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I have been taking care of mom seven years now, and it seems like as time goes on she wants to control my life, and what I do more & more. It's just too much! I am 35 yrs. old, and have a fourteen yr. old son I am raising w/o any help from his father. I just feel like she wants to have all the control she can get. Is it to maybe keep me taking care of her? Or afraid I'd leave her alone? I don't get it. I can't even use washer & dryer in any peace because she bought them. So ridiculous stuff like that makes me want my own place so much more. I pay my bills, and deserve to do laundry in peace, at least one would think. I'm buying my own car in a month, and I know she will freak out. It's my choice, and I won't my own car so I can run errands in peace without any questioning or clock-watching. I love my mom, but this whole thing has caused me so much stress over past couple years, and now that I am full-time college student I really need a quiet place to study with out her distracting me, Having a car will help me to go to quiet place like library to get some work done. If any of you can relate, or have any advice on "how" to deal with this then Please let me know. Thanks so much for any support you may offer. Have a Blessed new week:) kelly

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Go to child services and get an order for child support. If you have one, and he isn't paying the court should be helping you.
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This os true. I really don't believe in using threats but...don't be mad when doing this...the next time she starts tell her that the controlling must stop. That ur an adult. You r there to help her but her controlling is gettingbtoo much to bare. If she doesn't lighten up, then youmay have to look for a place of your own. Let her get upset, scream, hollar and walk away. She will think about it and if she continues to be controlling then start looking. At 14 your child is old enough to have a small job. Money he earns can go towards his personal needs. You can get help with housing thru Social Services and other agencies. Food stamps etc. Its for ur sanity.
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At some point or another, we all run into controlling people. People who control like to be in control of everyone and everything. What we can do is stand up to them and not let them cross our boundaries. One time I ran into a situation where I had to stand up to a controlling person, and much to my surprise they not only backed off, but I gained respect from that person almost overnight. Sometimes you just have to stand up to people and not budge
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I just re-read this thread, and want to affirm how surprisingly beneficial the "setting of boundaries" can be. Even with the most controlling fearsome parents, its astonishing how their treatment of a person will change when that person gets clear about what boundaries they are going to set while staying in the relationship and not abandoning them. Totally bending over can feed the monster in a way that never ends.
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I agree! You are setting an example of grace under pressure. The example that we do not turn our backs on people we love because they are difficult. We take care of our loved ones! But mostly, you are teaching your son how to treat you when he is your caregiver! Bravo!
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I don't believe she/he had any business asking what kind of an example you are setting for your children. I know you are putting family first, and I hope you don't leave.
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KellyB,
Get your mom into daycare. Elder daycare is less expensive than full time nursing home and some centers will accept Medicaid and VA benefits. She will be with nurses and other people her age doing fun activities all day. You will be free to get your duties done during the day and spend evenings and weekends together as a family.

In the beginning, she may be angry about losing control or accuse you of abandoning her, but many folks start to love the stimulation and social activities.

Connect with www.NADSA.org to see if there is a center near you. I hope there is one close.

Good luck and God Bless.
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wiseone: You should be able to go online and get your mom's doctor phone number. Good for you to sticking to your guns!
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Kelly, please reconsider leaving..... there are way more supportive and loving people here than 'bad apples'..... consider that you are so tired and stressed.... go back and read the supportive ones and ignore what hurt your feelings.... we are here for you.....
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kelly, some of the answers here are pretty harsh at times. People have bad days. Sometimes people have a mindset about how things should work without considering that family situations can differ. I've learned not to pay any attention to answers that don't fit my circumstance or what is right for me.

I actually know what you are talking about. I wanted to write to you earlier, but things I had to do kept coming up. I finally have time to sit down and write. Parents can treat us like we are forever teenagers. I am 63 and my mother still treats me like I'm 15. If she wants me to do something and I don't want to, she'll get angry and say this is my house, too. But if she doesn't want me to do something, then the house magically converts to hers. She uses belittling as a way to try to keep some control. It is irritating, but I try to let it slide. If I protest, it just escalates the situation. I know that if I ignore it, the situation will calm down and things will return to normal. (But yes, I do get angry with it.)

Kelly, I feel like you're doing what you need to be doing now. You seem to have a good feel for what you're doing and where you are going. Try not to let your mother get to you too much. A lot of mothers do the same thing. To mothers, we are always willful teenagers in need of control. As long as we know differently, we can try to let the remarks slide past us.

I hope you can find a good car. I know that you need something that you can say "This is MINE." I know that feeling so well.
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Kellyb, dont log off for good. I know you dont want to hear bad things but tune those out and listen to the good. You have to remember everybody
does not think the same due to their
own bad experiences or just plain
ignorance. I am sure you have a great
idea of what you need to do just for
your own sanity or just continue to let
things be the way they are and figure out what works best within your homw with your mother.
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Thank you, for all the positive & helpful comments. We all are on this site for caregiving. We care, and we give! So when anyone questions why I stick around for my mom when I'm 35, well they can stick it where the sun don't shine, lol. To say I haven't cut the cord with my mom is stupid. I'm her daughter, and you all don't know all we have been thorough in our lives. Family is first, and you take care of your own. period. I think I may sign out of this site for good. I will miss all the positive feedback, but thiers a few rotten apples in every bunch. I don't ask advice to have my feelings hurt, and to be talked down to. So good luck to all in your caregiving journeys and best wishes:) Kelly
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Off the subject here, but good for you Wiseone !!!!! So awesome to read someone who really stands their ground and means it....hope many who are having trouble setting boundaries read your post..
kellyb, so many great answers here, you are trying to help, it started out right..... find a place for mom if she has dementia and you and your son go live your lives.. and congrats on being in college..... that is awesome.... keep us updated...
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I and my husband are now on call people. We know ahead of time if we will need to work. We cannot call out ourselves, or we will be without a job. Anyway, Mom will call and say be here to pick me up at x time and x day.... knowing ahead of time I have got to work that day, she makes an appt. anyway for me to take her to. I have said give me the phone number, and I will change the date and time. She refuses to do so. I say well then I cannot take you. I am working that day. And I do NOT take her. This has become a really bad problem at times during the last four years since my Father died.
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God Bless you! It sounds like you need to do what I did when I was 20. I had been cooking, cleaning house (since the age of 9), carried a full load at college, helped raise my sister, & worked a part time job. It's time to leave the nest & live your own life! Your mom does not want to be alone.You have clearly been a wonderful daughter. Now you must think of your own health and that of your son.
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Generally speaking, controlling people will control anyone they can. It's not the person on the other end to firmly stand their ground and just don't let anyone control them. Just don't cater to the demands of the person trying to control you. Are you even had an elderly friend who started trying to control me especially at my most vulnerable times when I was sick. This happened several times even when I wasn't sick, and all I did was firmly stand my ground and not cater to his demands. I have the advantage of having a very loud voice, and I use this to my advantage, especially since he lived in an apartment complex across the street from me. I was sure to use situations against him and gain the attention and awareness of other neighbors. You just have to find a strategy that works for you and stand your ground to prevent being controlled. If this happens mostly when you're alone with that person, just don't be alone with them.
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You all be glad that the controlling was right out there where u can demand borders. My MIL was passive/aggressive. She used tried to guilt her sons or pout. Didn't work, TG. She wanted my DH to move nearer her in Fla. I had responsibilities here in NJ. My Mom and disabled nephew.
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Dealing with a person like this takes a lot of energy. I had to be honest with myself and my husband when it came to dealing with his mother. I had no desire in helping her and didn't feel bad at all about my decision. She is a handful and takes no desire in her own well-being at all and that turned me off. We had to give her a bit of tough love and believe it or not we see a small change in her. I am not saying to turn your back on your mother but give her boundaries and stick to them. Dont let her control your life because you build resentment and you will be like me and stop helping all together.
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If u are 35 how old is your Mother?
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My mother wanted to control my not living there with her-out of state for me! I said "you've loss your choice on where or who will live with you b/c you waited too long to make any decision. "
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I was wondering what things you have to do for her to take care of her?
I also want to vote YES on getting the POA and healthcare directive done. You don't have to use it for anything now, but it can help a great deal in a few years when things get more difficult for one and all.
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I think alot of times they want control because they have nothing going on in their own lives. You have to set boundaries and stick to them. People can only be control if you allow them to. I think that is a horrible way to treat someone and having dementia or any other disorder is not an excuse to accept it. I feel if it is mental related then the person should receive professional help and be moved into a different setting.
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Hi Kelly, congrats on your going back to school! Lots of people put that on the back burner when the children come along, then never do put it back up front. Good for you, anything you can do to improve your own future and income ability will be a great example for your child, and certainly helpful when you are wanting to help buy a grandbaby some extra things.

Controlling, I think you nailed it that some of it can come from fear. It's like they are periodically testing the water, ..."you'll still do what I ask, ...right?". I've noticed too, as people age, the ones who stay indoors and home more, the few things they still have interest in seem super important. Like, since they don't have a lot going on, they want to control the heck out of the things they do have. Of course for a person that has time intensive things like a teenager to keep up with, classes, errands, laundry, the knit picking seems pretty nutty. :-) (Yes, I'm speaking from 1st hand experience with my Mom.)

Yes, you need your own car, your own future, your own corner of the world to call home, and it sounds like you are working on those. That's good, otherwise you'll look up in the forest without a trail of bread crumbs and wonder how in the heck you got there, how you're going to get out. Heehee, my Sister once said to our very controlling Mom when she was trying to boss her around on several things, as well as tell her what job to take, "Well, Mom, if I let you live my life, ...then who's life will I live?". :-) That was over 10 years ago, but still makes me smile. Chin up, you'll get there in due time.
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Sometimes you just have to decide what you actually can do, and what you will do, and let the rest go by. This is particularly difficult with a parent, perhaps especially with a mother. There is a special bond with roots in childhood that call forth feelings that don't help in the current situation. She may be becoming more controlling because she feels she is losing control of her life, but knowing that (if true) won't help you change her behavior. There is very little, if anything, you can do to change her behavior. What you can do is change your response to it. I would suggest you devise some scripted responses to her complaints and repeat them word for word when the subject comes up. Calmly. Even robotically. When she complains about how you use the washer: "This is how I'm doing it." The car? "It's my car." Whatever fits. And, if she freaks out, leave the room, not in anger but matter-of-factly. If necessary, go in another room and close the door. Quietly.
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At 35 years you have not yet broken the umbilical cord with your mother. What kind of example are you setting for your child? Get your own place, your own car, your own college education and lead your own life. When you do this, your mother won't be able to control your circumstances. Remember, you are allowing this control. Without your participation, she has no control. Good luck with your education!
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Maybe it's time for you and your son to move out and get her nursing in for all your sakes its better you are a visiting child and grandson less stress more love she will still be bosssy but it won't be 24/7
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KellyB, you say in your profile that your mom has dementia. I would read a lot about dementia. Since her brain is not working properly, it's not unusual for people to act oddly. Sometimes they see things that are not there. Sometimes they become obsessed with something or become controlling or agitated. It's difficult to deal with, but if we can understand that it's due to brain damage, it makes it more bearable, IMO.

Before I realized my cousin had dementia, I had a horrible time tolerating her. I stayed with her to help her run her household and take care of her and her cat, when she broke her foot. She was so rude and constantly would accuse me of putting grease on the counter. (There was no grease.) She would sit at the door and start complaining about odd things as soon as I walked into the door. (I didn't know what she was talking about.) She was terrified her cat could escape the house through a hole the size of a pin head! It wasn't until later that we realized it was the dementia causing all that irrational and controlling behavior.

There is no way to stop that behavior, only tolerate it and redirect it. Eventually, your mom won't be able to stay alone at anytime. I would consider the options at this time and make sure you have all the proper documents like Durable Power of Attorney, Healthcare POA, etc. if she is still capable of signing them. I might also see an Elder Law attorney to get advice on financial matters, as long term care for those with dementia is expensive. I would see what the options are for her situation.

It is very stressful to deal with someone with dementia and I bet your child is stressed too. These are things to consider when thinking of your long range plans.

Also, my cousin is now in a Memory Care unit. She is no longer complaining or controlling, as she doesn't have much to say. Everyone's progression is different, but I would prepare myself for what lies ahead.
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