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I know there are no answers, but I need to vent a little. I called my mother today to wish her a Merry Christmas Eve morning. I found out that she had fallen two days ago in her home. My brother told me this. I asked my mother if she had fallen and she said "no, I sat". She said she had been trying to put on a pair of pants and fell backward onto a bed, and then slipped off the bed onto the floor. She couldn't get up. She didn't have her cell phone with her, and she couldn't reach the wall phone (which was in the next room. Her grandson was home, but he has Down Syndrome and he refused to help her get up. So, she told me that she "scooted" through two rooms until she reached the clothes washer in the kitchen and used that to pull herself up (I don't know how). I suggested a life-alert or some type of alert system that she could wear so that someone would be called if she fell and couldn't get up. She said she doesn't need one. I asked if she would use one if I got it for her. She said "No, not for this" (meaning her fall?) I explained that someone would be alerted and would come to help her. She repeated that she wouldn't use it "for this". Then she said "You don't listen". That's when I said good-by and hung up. I'm so frustrated and demoralized after almost every contact with her. She lives in a house packed with stuff. Obstacles to walking, definite fall hazards. I don't know if she really slipped off the side of the bed or not, she won't tell me the truth about any falls. She fell a couple of months ago and didn't tell me. My brother told me (again). When I asked her about it, she said she "fell asleep standing up in the kitchen". It is very obvious to me that she should not be living alone, but she insists that she is NOT going to move. I know there are no answers, I'm just grateful to have a place to vent my feelings. On Dec. 26th, I'm going to try to get an appointment with a counselor to try to deal with my feelings.


Thank you all for listening.

Thank you all for your comments. Much good advice here. I've come to accept that it will take a medical emergency (probably another fall, but with a serious injury) before anyone can help her. She used to take the recommendations of third parties, people she did not know, rather than her own children. Now, she ignores everyone's recommendations, including her doctor. Whew! Just talking about this is exhausting. I hope you all have had a peaceful Christmas.
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Lauren88 Dec 25, 2018
We are living parallel lives. It is crazy. Try to have a peaceful holiday.
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Oh my goodness. Do we have the same mother? You should read my story. The thread is called What should I do? There is so much more to it, but I have tried Life Alert and she won't let anyone in the house because of all the stuff. We cannot touch ANYTHING. We tried to clean up- and yes, throw out junk- and she has been furious for years about that one day. She will never forgive it. It happened 10 years ago and she talks about it still. And is just as angry.
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janeinspain Dec 25, 2018
There is just no reasoning with people who have this mentality. It is a sickness. During one of my visits home my mother agreed that I could take a few of the broken vacuums (yes, a few! which had been sitting around for about 10 years or more) and a box of other unused items to the Goodwill. My mother always complains bitterly about the junk piled up in her house. She was happy to see the stuff go but my brother then accused me of giving away “family heirlooms.” If and when my mom ever asks me to help her clean stuff out again I will politely decline.
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Sorry for anyone here who reads this and notes that I’ve shared it before....I have a social worker friend who often says “events will happen that will make the decisions for us” It’s proven true time and again. While it’s no fun waiting for these events, and knowing it’s to our parents detriment, sometimes it’s what has to happen. You can’t change your mom or make her choose better for herself. But life will bring about events that will make changes happen, whether she likes it or not. Don’t keep trying to force or even suggest what she’s not ready to do, just be available when she needs help when she has no choice left. You’re kind for caring
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Lauren88 Dec 25, 2018
You are wise. I wish I had not tried so hard to get my mother to make decisions while she was still somewhat able to get out and see places she might could live. We told her we did not want to get to the point that she could not make those decisions. Now she is almost completely disabled and so angry. She is mean and maybe it is dementia- I am no longer sure what might be dementia and what might be anger. It is awful and I am considering leaving her to the enabling sibling and walking away.
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I agree with freqflyer! My parents also in serial denial about the need for any new assistance, starting with using canes, getting a hearing aid, throwing out spoiled food, having caregivers in the home, using walkers, giving up rolling chairs in the kitchen, dealing with clutter. And other more serious issues. It is sad that - as FF stated - it seems common that something bad has to happen before the advice is heeded. You are not alone. Great that you are seeking therapy! I also find reading the posts and responses here to be very helpful and enlightening. I spent a fair amount of time yesterday re-visiting a few that I had saved in my phone browser. This forum is full of smart, compassionate people!

Jane
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mally1 Dec 25, 2018
Helpful, enlightening, and fairly often VERY funny! Most of the humor is because what's being discussed is so darn familiar; we've either lived through it or are dealing with it now with my hubby's folks and my mom. So while sometimes I could cry for someone and want to jump in and help (though with my luck they'd live in Europe), a good laugh is not something to spit upon....
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guiltandanger, my Mom had also refused help of any kind. Both Mom and my Dad were in their mid 90's and I knew they weren't in an elderly friendly environment living at home with a lot of stairs. But I was just the "kid" and what did I know being in my late 60's at that time :P

An elder does not want to admit to defeat, that they need help. When my parent's primary doctor recommended a life alert type of device, my Dad chimed in saying that's for old people. Guess we would have needed to revisit that topic when he and Mom reached 100 !!

Many of us here on Aging Care had to wait for a medical emergency before we could do something major to help create a better situation for our parent(s).... [sigh]

Oh talk therapy is helpful. My therapist was around my age and she had recently had to deal with elderly parents, so she really did understand.
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