Follow
Share

My mother is 84. She was a school teacher who raised me as a single parent. So she is use to being in control. I am an only child.(56) and my mother is stressing me out. She lives alone and seems to be doing ok managing her home on the surface. My mother has always been a controlling person. Now all she does is complain. Everything seems to make her unhappy and she blames me for almost everything
I don’t know if it is a health issue because she refuses to go the doctor. Has not had a physical since the late 1980’s. She is losing her vision because of glaucoma (in denial), but was complaining even before that. My mother has caused her few friends and family to avoid her because she complains about everything they do. Now she wants me to be her outlet for everything. I work full time and run a cottage business and have a collage aged daughter.
I truly understand that my mother is lonely. She never developed any interests. So now she really has nothing to do. When I have suggested that she join The Red Hats group so that she can get out of the house more..she will cast that idea aside because she does not see herself as an old lady and really wants nothing to do with people who do.
What is real stressful is when she does get out… she wants to return home right away..but then complains that I don’t take her out enough. When I take her out to the movies she complains that I did not do it sooner.
The worst days for my daughter and me are the days when she gets very little sleep. The telephone becomes her friend and she will call either of us at 6AM to complain about something that we did or did not do, then call later to complain about something else. I am at my wits end. I love her dearly and will do whatever I need to do for her. I just need help learning how to cope.
She is so angry about getting older. Because of her anger we are walking on eggshells. She will then flip and be very pleasant...as long as you don’t disagree with her about anything.
I am so afraid that the next few years a going to be a living hell.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Sammoz, your mother may have vascular dementia. Has she been seen recently by a geriatrician, a neurologist, or even just her GP?

If she does have vascular dementia, or any other sort, she genuinely can't help her behaviour. Of course that doesn't make it any easier on the rest of you, but it's important to understand what is going on in her head, and not to hold her responsible for what she can't control.

Stay positive for the sake of all of you, but it's no good trying to change your mother's thought patterns. Try reassurance instead; and if she's abusive don't respond, just walk away.

Depression (which can be expressed as anger, or as complete blankness) is also common after strokes - is your mother being given any help with that?
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

My mum is 74years old 8 months ago she lost her vision in both her eyes she can see straight ahead but people walking at side of her she gets scared cause she cant see them this is because of a stroke. She didnt know she had she has had 2 strokes in 2011 a mini one a a big stroke but d4s say its a set back of one her legs have gone bad aswell her legs whete bad before but now she uses a stick, the past month she has changed one min nice then next falling out with family members im there for her all the time but im getting worried that she is going to lose it we all trying to help her by giving positive thoughts not bad ones but she says its others
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

You'll have to take that up with the medical professionals. We're just the caregivers. :)
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Acting like that is irresponsible, to say the least. However, to call it a disease only prolongs the behavior. I am saddened to say that a friend of mine suffered greatly due to the diagnosis alone. I can also say that "therapy and meds" only worsened what would have otherwise been a brief phase. Sadder still, her family was frightened by the diagnosis and disowened her. Thankfully, she was able to get away from her doctors and started life over. Finally, years later, her family welcomed her back and realized that the diagnosis is what caused the behavior. I would say she is now a rather pleasant person to hang out with. We are all quite relieved that she got rid of those psychiatrists in her life. She also got married recently, and has not looked back.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

BPD can be managed with meds and with good therapy. I'm sorry you've not been fortunate enough to experience a good outcome.

Years ago, I knew someone who, in retrospect, would probably qualify for this diagnosis. She sapped my time, energy, told lies about me and to me; lies that destroyed relationships that I had with other friends. I finally had to put up boundaries to prevent her from doing further damage.

It was not the diagnosis that caused that damage. It was her distorted thought process and her behavior that did that.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

BTW, one can have a borderline personality without having the disorder, just like one can have a narcissistic personality without having the order. It just means that the traits are ones that are described for the personality type. For example, I have a sensitive personality, though I don't have the disorder... At least, I don't think I do.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Ibeenscammed, you apparently have not been lucky enough to deal with a borderline personality. It is not a bogus diagnosis, no matter how you might wish it to be.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

youre mother is nuttier'n a GD fruitcake , and why wouldnt she be ? shes 84 FFS ..
kiddin aside , i think old mothers are especially ' hard ' on their daughters .
i saw my demented mom punch my sister in the belly only 3 + years ago . evidently moms mood and state of mind werent compatible with my sisters image and " yap " at the time .
well , youd have to meet my sister to understand i guess ..
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Borderline is a bogus diagnosis. Not only that, as soon as a person is called borderline, I promise that person will be treated a lot worse all around, by her friends, by her family, and certainly she won't get treated well by anyone in the medical field. Diagnosing people (mostly women, and male doctors do the diagnosing) with BPD does nothing but attempt to demean and control them. Please do not go that route.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Sissisu, do you think your mother would fit the profile of a borderline personality. Their ups and downs will drive you crazy. So many of the things you said about her fit the profile. If she is borderline, there is nothing you can do or say that will fix her. It sounds like you are handling things very well. We need to take lessons from you about keeping healthy boundaries in place. I don't envy you with what you'll be facing in the future when she needs more help. I would be looking around for good assisted living and nursing facilities to have something in place for her future. Living with someone with a borderline personality can drive a person crazy in no time.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Going through a similar situation right now. Mom is 89, Dad died over 40 years ago. Mom was the typical 50's housewife, but always in control. She did not know how to drive as her parents only really believed that men should know how - plus they said she was too nervous. I hear that story all the time, plus how she's done everything for everyone and now that she needs help, she doesn't get any. She needs to be the center of attention 24/7. I live a good 4 hours away, brother is local. He comes in and does errands for her, but the brute labor - cleaning, gardening, etc., she wants me to do it. It's like she wants her pound of flesh out of me. Oh she paid for our education, which my Dad had always said they would do. Had he not said that not sure if it would have happened. But yes, I'm spoiled. She does not take into account the hundreds of things we have done for her. She even says who put a roof over your head, who fed you....well that's a parent's responsibility. She then says oh I hate hearing that. When she has to make a real decision, like moving, she hems and haws about it. She'd rather have someone else tell her what to do, then she can blame them. She moved into a condo roughly 15 years ago (basically a double house). She made a huge garden in front, side and back of the house, now cannot maintain it. Now, I'm supposed to take care of it. She was having a landscaper come out to do the heavy lifting once in the spring, but honestly, they could come out every month. She wants it perfect. I don't even take care of my own smaller garden as much as I have to trim hers. She keeps saying she wanted to buy a house with me and we'd live together. I have told her endlessly, no that would not work. Oh because you say no, it's just a no. Yes, two votes and I vote no. Not happening. We are like oil & vinegar. Plus the anger and moodiness - cannot deal with it. One day sunny, the next day stormy. All of her friends see her only in the sunny mode, rarely does she go very dark and stormy with them. On the occasions she's gone dark with them, they've been super concerned. I've had two friends reach out to me and say she needs help - only to have her agree. She didn't understand they meant mental help - as in a psychiatrist. I don't know what the answer is. I call her daily (she's not picking up tonight - she likes to pout, too), and I use the mute button a LOT. I've also started writing in a journal to vent my frustrations. Better than getting in a fight, which inevitably happens each time I visit. It's all my fault, too. She asks me to sit and have a conversation, which means she yells and lectures me. I really think I may find an excuse. not to go there over Thanksgiving, as I would be there the entire week. Not sure I can handle it. Christmas would be a few days, so that may be a better option. She's still griping about how "no one" would eat all the ham she made (no I cooked it along with every holiday dinner), so we may be just having baloney. I said fine, then she tried to argue. I even agree then she wants to argue. I told her one time I get it she's angry and bitter and she got even angrier - I AM NOT ANGRY. The last time she had a huge meltdown, I finally walked over and gave her a huge hug, like you'd do to a child who had a tantrum. She got surprisingly calmer. I swear we revert to being children (well some do). I've tried to get her interested in other things, but she just seems to want to sit and wallow. I even told her not moving back to my hometown, been a good 35 years since I've lived there - her response? Well, why did you bother to be born here? I told her I wasn't moving back and she wouldn't like where I lived because it's not her (our) hometown. She only knows that town; every time she's been here the way this or that is done locally is stupid. She also started calling me in the wee hours of the morning - like 2 a.m. I finally stopped answering, but that meant I had scads of voice mail. What if this was an emergency? Uh,you'd have to call 911 because I can't be there in a nano second. "I don't want to call 911". Not sure what to tell you, but I can't tele-transport myself like in Star Trek.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I truly feel your pain. My mom is 92, and in remarkably good health, but is very angry, and has been angry all her life (I'm literally just coming to recognize this with the help of my therapist). I want to recommend a good book: "Coping With Your Difficult Older Parent: A Guide for Stressed-Out Children" by Grace Lebow and Barbara Kane. Very quick read and very insightful. I wish you relief! Don't blame yourself.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

If the counselors themselves caused the harm, there's little I can do, JessieBelle. I stick with supportive people and stay away from those that deny that the harm occurred. Since therapy caused much of the harm I cannot go back to therapy for "treatment." Much as I would love to hire a friend, it seems much like prostitution now to pay a person to be a friend in an office. What does one get but an office, appointments, and a diagnosis that further separates and labels me as different and disordered all over again?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Ibeenscammed, this is not going to be very supportive, but the only one who can help you with your situation is you. I read what you wrote and there was very little that couldn't have also applied to me. I imagine other people may see their own situations, too. It can seem like everyone but us has charmed lives, but few people do.

The reality of life is that each person has to tend to their own needs. You can't depend on other people, though in theory it is a sweet idea. If people are lucky they'll find a mate who will help out with things. And it they are lucky when they get old, there will be family to make sure they're cared for.

If the things that have happened to you have caused PTSD, only you can take yourself to a counselor for help. If you're angry and depressed, you really can't expect other people to want to be around you. You first have to be a friend to make friends.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

I am single and lost my boyfriend 13 years ago. My own friends (ex-friends now) are accusing me of "anger problems" and put up insane boundaries thinking it was the "healthy" thing for them to do. I was always an independent person. Gradually, I had no outlet, no one to bounce things off of, and every time I needed something from anyone, such as a simple favor like a short ride somewhere, some financial advice or simply to talk no one was there. These were not huge, long-term favors, just little things. So I had to make do. When I had an injury, no one helped me out so I had to hire a dog walker. I spent hundreds of dollars on cabs those months having no one to drive me to doctor appointments. A few years later I was raped, which was random bad luck I suppose. Again, no one was there so I simply moved on with my life, knowing it was useless to try to do anything like report it. I quietly relocated. But shortly after, my whole life spiraled out of control. People in my new location were not friendly at all. I couldn't explain to anyone why I had suddenly had to move there, so I said nothing (figuring I wouldn't be believed anyway...) and it all got worse.

A few years later I was abused in a hospital. No one believed me. My friends said it was "impossible." However, shortly afterward, the hospital was proven wrong.

I ended up with very bad PTSD as a result, I cannot get a lawyer without money.. I cannot sleep, so I am always exhausted. I cannot get medical care at all since I am a malpractice victim. I still snap at people due to constant fatigue. Very few even speak to me anymore.

Anger issues? Those that refuse to apologize and continue to blame and accuse are definitely making it worse. Those that know they are wrong should simply apologize. Those that cannot endure being with me out of shame or embarrassment or because they don't like my appearance should fess up to that instead of lying. I do recognize tokenism.

Yes, I am angry, and it's only going to continue and continue as long as I am unable to find friends. I cannot find love, understanding, compassion, and community. These are the things any person would want. A family that wants me. People who cherish me for who I am, who value me for the things I am good at. I do go out daily and I am not shy and I continue to try out new approaches.

I believe that every human deserves another chance and I believe that angry people got that way for a reason. They are not "personality disordered." Because I was not that way a few years ago, and YES, something happened that caused it, I can see very clearly how it all came about and how it can be reversed. I wish I could make those changes happen faster. I do believe it'll turn around. So please do not dismiss your angry relatives as "disordered" nor having moral problems and know that somewhere, someone needs to say a simple "I'm sorry." If that person is no longer living, then an apology needs to be said for that person. It's much easier to get over trauma if harms are acknowledged by all, not dismissed and not denied.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Hi everyone,
My mom is 84 and I am 56. Mom gave me everything so now she is similar to many of you have described your mothers as she brings that up and I have taken and am STILL taking everything from her. She accuses me of stealing money, her bank cards, how everyone she knows said I was spoiled. Even my own dad, who was never a dad to me and very mentally abusive, said to her that one day I would take everything from her. I get so down i can hardly live. I now drink to stop the feeling.... I don't know what to do. On top of it all she is going to the Casino with almost every penny.
Then blames me the money is gone. I pay for all I can but it's becoming not enough. Please how do I know if its Alzheimer's or Dementia or Depression. I already took her to the Doctor once and she is really defensive. I can't hardly leave the house to go grocery shopping let alone an appointment with anyone....... We use to be so close. Now I don't know. Was I, am I really a bad daughter who just took. Your mom is your world. Her opinion means everything
Help
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Possibly a sign of reality that she has something that is not going to reverse, alzheimer's dementia, old age, with illness. Growing older, is really very stressful for everyone involved including the sandwich children (adults), even though our children are in their 20's and 30's it is no picnic. Both sets of children regardless of their age need us.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Well, at least I'm not the only one struggling with the demands of a dysfunctional mother! I think I should take my own advice and stay far away from the situation. At 48, I think if there were going to be any improvements they would have happened by now. It is so hard to love someone incapable of loving you back. Best of luck to all of you!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I can relate to you 100%. My mother always had her way. Did what she wanted to when she wanted to. When I was growing up I was always shoved in the corner. She focused on my brothers. Now, I am 61 years old. She thinks she can boss, talk to me like a dog, and thinks I should never talk back to her. I had it rough. She spent money on the boys like it was going out of style. She never gave me one thin dime to pay for my college or anything else. My youngest brother was in the same boat as me. He has left for good and will never be back to live in this area. The other boy which she so doted on doesn't even care if she is breathing. It is hard to try to take care of someone like that. Being selfish is my mother's main priority. I know one time when she was in the hospital we needed to stop at a store and pickup some things. She told my me my husband did not have time to do any shopping that he should be home sitting with my dad while she was in the hospital. My brother would go visit her and stay a whopping 10 minutes. My youngest brother was with me. He could not believe she would be so selfish. Now that my dad has had a stroke she thinks we shouldn't even go to the grocery store. It is my life. I worked 12 hour shifts as a nurse for many years. I worked when they were in the bed sleeping. I went days when the snow was so bad they closed the local factories. Mom never had to work. I have a very bad back. I live with pain everyday. I am diabetic and have problems keeping my blood sugar under control. I have neuropathy in my hands and feet and digestive problems from a bout with pancreatitis. Yet to hear her talk to other people, I am a big fake. I really don't know how much more I am going to be able to take. I would like to run away and never let anyone know where I am. The biggest joke is she threw her own mother into a nursing home.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

It sound like depresion to me
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Aunthelper, you are welcome to write whatever you like. Not everybody has an answer per se but your comments are still allowed. Glad you joined AgingCare!!!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sorry my comment really isn't an answer to your question. This is my first time on this site and just realized my mistake. Best of luck!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Oh I have an 87 yr. old aunt just like this! Though I am not her daughter (and she is childless) we were always close so now she expects me and my sister to take care of her. She has physical problem but mentally sharp and was a school teacher always in control. When I suggested getting help because I couldn't handle it she called me a coward and she would have done it for her family. Well, she did take care of her mother for the last month of her life, and her husband when he was dying of cancer, but that's different. I live 400 miles away and stay with her 4 times a year for a week or two to give my sister a break. My sister is local. My aunt may go on for years like this and she has plenty of money to hire help, but she refuses to bring in outsiders. It is so frustrating and she is so stubborn. I refuse to call her since the last two calls she laid on very hurtful guilt trips, but she is always on my mind. Damned if I do and damned if I don't. damn!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Good point, JesseBelle. Losing her vision could be causing her to focus on what will happen if she loses her vision completely! Anger is the other side of fear:(
Perhaps if you address this with her and take the bull by the horns she will be relieved. I hope you are able to do that. Keep us posted and take care of your own stress, too:) xo
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

asks was, oh my goodness. You are not facing a bright future, I'm sorry to say. I don't know the methods to use to turn around a controlling, headstrong, unrealistic person like your mom because I had one just like her. I couldn't help her no matter how hard I tried. She had always worked, had interests, hobbies but she went into major denial about getting older and turned into a stubborn mule. I thought I was going to lose my mind. She had many physical problems but she didn't have dementia, I was told to my face by her doctor.
Can you choose not to answer her calls at times and let her leave a message? That gives you time to collect yourself before you return her call. Get stern with her and tell her you are not her entertainment committee. If she's lonely and board, it is NOT your duty. She should've thought of that before. It's selfish of her to put you and your daughter in this position and its up to you to stop it now. My kids and I had to do that with my mom. Selfish was her middle name. She had had a life but she didn't want any of us to have one just because she was hacked off about getting older. Get rid of the eggshells!!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

One thing I would do right away is tell her a trip to the opthamologist only takes a few minutes. The doctor will test her eyes for pressure and vision. If she has glaucoma, most likely he'll prescribe one or two bottles of eye drops to put in her eyes. This will go a long way toward saving her vision. However you can, get her to the opthamologist soon.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sounds pretty annoying already. She has formed some negative habits. For all she has accomplished, she has gone into her own head instead of continuing to serve others. She could volunteer at an elementary school to read to kindergartners, do tutoring, any type of mentoring for children at risk. The key is to get her to think of others and how she can use her gifts and talents. Let her know she has much to offer and be positive. That could be her new habit, which is possible to change! She may need a little nudge, or maybe a jolt. Don't be afraid to have the discussion with her as an objective adult.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.