My Mom is 86 yrs young. She is fairly healthy and gets around well. I moved in with her 11 years ago, shortly after my husband died. He was only 52. I think it scared her and she didn't want to be alone when it was her time.
For the most part it was just our normal close relationship. But somewhere along the way it has changed. I can't say I'm a caregiver because she can still take care of herself, but as she has gotten older I have noticed changes.
Sometimes a childish behavior, as in, when I can't do something she wants right away, she comes back with a guilt imposing comment like "Never Mind, I'll do it by myself."
She gets frustrated and stressed and just throws her hands up and says she can't handle this or that.
She now assumes that wherever I go, she's going with me. Before, she would have asked to join me. She just expects to go with me for company parties, visiting my kids, etc.
She has given up driving very far, so I take her where she wants to go most of the time. I have to rearrange my schedule to accomodate her appoinments and so forth. We live a long way from anywhere, so I seldom get to go to town or anywhere else by myself.
I have two sibling within a 5 mile radious but I cannot get them to offer to take her to town once in awhile or even invite her over for dinner once a week. So unless I am at work, we are together.
Some of this I expected with increasing age, but she has continually stopped doing other things. When I realized this was happening, I stopped doing some things like dishes, and her laundry, to keep her moving and active. Things I know she's capable of doing. It scares me everytime something comes up in conversation and she tells me she doesn't think she can do that anymore. I'm afraid that the less she does the less she'll be able to do. I don't want her to give up on life. I know somethings are more difficult and sometimes frustrating for her to do.
I'm just not sure when to push.
I don't know if any of this makes any sense to anybody. I'm just frustrated and worried.