I have brought my mother to live with my roommate and I last October. She had open heart surgery during May 2009 and prior to then, had lived independently in another state. I on the other hand enjoyed my career and my total freedom. I have always been a great daughter or so others have told me. Taking my mom on trips; buying her a home to live in; spoiling her. We have always had different personalities and she has always been selfish of my time. I have always dealt with this in the past due to the fact that while I would visit her often on weekends and take her shopping, etc., I could then return to my home. Lately her selfishness is so apparent. For example, my Goddaughter whom I love like my own daughter came by the house recently for she and I to go out and do some shopping. I took her into my mom's room to say hello and my mother didn't even look at her. She just held her head in her hand and claimed to have a headache. On another occasion my roommate and I took at walk to the house next door and when we returned my mother said sarcastically to me, "well, did you enjoy your walk?" She has never been welcoming to my friends. (I am single and never married.) I told her recently that I am angry that she defends my brother who lives in another state but only a few walking steps from my mother's home and who has never done anything for her. Yet, she thinks he has hung the moon! My roommate got into a heated discussion recently with my mother telling her that I get tired from working full-time and attending to her needs during the evenings and weekends yet she worries about my brother and what about me? My roommate told my mother that I never ask my brother for help because he is never available. I am driving my mother to her home in Pennsylvania this Thursday for the weekend and am dreading the drive and all of the care I will need to provide (she has a trache and requires suctioning and breathing treatments.) I have a very heavy humidifier that supplies her with oxygen during her sleep and at age 61 will have to most likely get that into her home on my own. I am doing this for her. She hasnt been in her home for almost 3 years. I am starting to get caregiver burnout. I have been "comfort eating" and have gained about 8 pounds recently. I am trying to take care of me as I realize at age 86, my mother who has a very sound mind is selfish and its all about her. I have spent the past three years sleeping at hospitals; taking exceptional care of her and working with all of her doctors as she recovered from open heart surgery. I have 9 notebooks of documentation..every treatment; condition; medication etc. I have been her advocate and drove 33 miles one way four days a week from my home when she was confined at a chronic care facility at Baltimore. I don't feel as close to her since she has moved in with us. I really feel as though she doesn't see or doesn't want to see all that I give up in my life to care for her. I can't take a vacation and I am too tired to make plans with friends. My eating is getting out of control and I am going to join Weight Watchers at some point. I love my career of 42 years and would like to work some more but this is just all so depressing. I feel as though there is nothing to look forward to. I will be caring for her until she passes and I love her and don't want her to die but I am just depressed. I will try to find some time to get another counselor with everything else going on in my life. I appreciate this support group. It means a lot to have others share their experiences as quite frankly I feel so alone. I don't talk to my friends about this. What can they say? No one really understands unless they are going through this. At 61, I thought I deserved some fun in life but all of my life I have taken care of her. Protected her when her alcoholic husband who is now deceased beat her and have always been there for her. I just never imagened in my wildest dreams that following her surgery she would not be able to continue to live alone. I never had children. Never wanted any. Now I have a child in my home that I never signed up for. Oh by the way, she made me promise never to put her in a nursing home so once again, its all about her.

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I can relate in many ways to your post; especially always caring for my mother since I was 12 basically. Long story short; we make promises at times when we don't know the impact of the future. Assisted Living or a nursing home are viable options. I didn't realize until my mother was in a NH that nursing homes of the past are not the same now. Of course, there are the exceptions. But, by doing my homework I found an outstanding one and after a period of adjustment my mother is finally adjusted.

After becoming well acquainted with the facility she is in; they offer regular entertainment on a weekly basis, and on-going activiites that my mother finally will take part in. Also, there are people in and out of her room daily; including the nursing staff of course, but also she receives communion daily (we are Catholic) and the nun who comes in stays to visit. This facility also has a concierge to give extra attention to the residents and this is a blessing. Also she has made friends and they dine in the lunch room together daily or when she is up to it.

She has a daily interaction with people that I could not provide. And, of course she has medical and mental problems that only a facility can deal with.

She will never be happy wherever she is as she has never admitted to being happy in her life, ever. I have peace in knowing in my heart it is the best possible place for her even though she continually complains. She has been complaining her entire life; it is a pattern.

She continues to "try" to make me feel guilty - I have lost the guilt as it is destructive and I have done everything I possibly can for her. I have a family and they need me too. Hope you find a solution that works for you. Hugs and prayers and take care.
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