I am 64 and my mother is 82-I recently moved to the area she lives in. She lives by herself in a retirement community. She is selfish, controling and is alway lying. Now she is always been this way but getting worse. I am trying to help her but when I do -she says I need to mind my own business. If I cant go take her someplace she pitches a fit like a 5 year. Please someone give me some advice. I have seen therapists in the past and all told me I needed to divorce her. Not sure I can because of guilt and also thinking about my dad-who died four years ago-he loved her even though she was awful to him. Please what should I do

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Set boundaries! Otherwise she will drain the life out of you and drag you into depression. My mom is 96. She was a trophy wife, very beautiful and she knew it. My dad was a Naval officer and valued her mostly for her looks. They were devoted to their image, and the five kids were just part of the supposedly perfect picture. I was a well trained little maid of all housework by the time I was 10 (the year my youngest brother was born) and 13 when my sister was born. Then I was the nanny. I don’t know where my mom was those years. My sis has no memories of my mom bathing or dressing or tucking her into bed. I was the mom. My mother was sort of a silent vapor around the house (unless she was having a tantrum over some purse or dress my dad wouldn’t let her have). I mopped floors, washed dishes, changed sheets and ironed. I realize now, that she wasn’t really interested in us as children. It was all about her and my dad. But we thought at that time all homes were like this. Needless to say we all left home at 18 on the dot, and didn’t hear much from her over the years, mainly at Christmas. She didn’t even call me when I gave birth to the first grandchild. Mom and Dad were busy traveling the world and looking perfect. Fast forward to now. Now that Mom is is 96 and her physical beauty is just a memory, which makes her angry! Now that the putter shell is failing I have come to see who she really is. It’s hard to see ANY internal beauty! She lives in a very expensive, beautiful senior living complex, and my sister and I see to her every need, but she complains, demands, whines, and manipulates. She is in good health and has everything to be thankful for but shows no appreciation. She criticizes everyone and everything about her complex. I’m sure the lovely caregivers there must hate it when she needs attention. We manage her money, her insurance, her healthcare appointments, and take her out shopping, to lunch, for drives, and all she does is whine about how no one comes to see her. It’s demoralizing and depressing. She blames us for moving her into the assisted living section, but we did that so she could realize some of the long term health care benefits she has been paying over 30years for! She thinks she doesn’t belong there, she’s too good for it! But she’s incontinent, and get this, refuses to wear depends because they “show through my slacks.” I dread calling or visiting her. It’s so draining, and she’s getting worse. Of course her three sons who are MIA can do no wrong while she beats my sis I and I down with her complaints. She asked me once, four years ago if she could move in with me. I thank God that I said no. That’s the most important boundary you can set. I would be a total wreck if she was living with us. I’m already struggling with depression and guilt which is overflowing into my marriage and doing damage. I’m irritable and flare up with my husband. God help me that I never put my children through this. People are living to be too old now. The struggle with the loss of their lives as they knew them. Dementia creeps in. They revert to childlike, selfish behavior. It’s not a pretty picture. I won’t “divorce” my mother, but I will be seeing less of her, and on my terms, to preserve my mental and physical health!
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BlackHole Sep 2018
Stay strong, Wheezie. These years are so hard. Save yourself. ((((big hugs))))
I am really feeling like there is hope for me to deal with my mother Today I found myself snapping at my husband because of being so hurt and angry at my 81 year old mean mom. I plan to come and read these posts instead of complaining to the rest of my family and instead of being depressed!
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Grandma, the best way to deal with a dysfunctional parent is how you would deal with a neighbor's barking dog. First, put up a fence to keep it from trespassing and crapping on your property. This also keeps it from biting you. You might try being nice to it, but you choose how much energy to put into that before ignoring the dog becomes your best option. On the one hand, your mother built the bed you can now make her lie in. On the other hand, most dysfunctional people had their dysfunctions abused into them. Compassion for her is not unjustified, but martyrdom is. Give your mother the time, support and affection you can afford, and take control of how you react to how she reacts. Reward good behavior, ignore counterattack after protecting yourself. Find the tools to support yourself. Do your best and let that be good enough. Good Luck. God Bless You.
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You will never find peace until you learn to accept her as she is. I didn't say you have to "like" her and the way she is, just accept her. When she gets on your nerves, excuse yourself - go to another room. Don't argue or explain. She may eventually get the message, but don't count on it. She is what she is. You cannot change her. Only God has the power to do that. Good luck.
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Why is it that aging mother's seem to be so difficult with their families? playagrandma, my mother also has a personality disorder (schizoid personality). She has always been abusive, distrustful, paranoid and most importantly...she is never wrong. When I was in my twenties, I realized my mother would never love or accept me. I was her personal property to treat as she wanted for her own needs. That was a turning point for me where I was able to disengage from her on an emotional basis. This is not the same as divorcing her but it protects you from being hurt because you can now love yourself and accept yourself. Disengaging emotionally from her means you no longer need her to love you. When you reach that point, dealing with her is so much easier. You will have to stand up for yourself, set boundaries and stick to it. I also hold her accountable for the things she says and does. She does not hurt me anymore because I have no emotional attachment, I only do what I have to do to provide for her care and see that she can be independent. It takes practice doing this but it works. My sister is only now learning how to do this with out mother. My sister has spent her 59 years enabling our mother's behavior and she has suffered for it because she wanted to be loved by our mother. Believe me, my mother is incapable of living anyone. People with personality disorders manipulate others for their own needs. They can not empathize or feel anything for another person because their world is all about themselves. I may sound harsh but for you to persevere and protect your emotional well being. Emotionally detaching requires that you change many of your attitudes, beliefs and behaviors. Detaching is not about enabling your abuser; it’s about disarming your abuser by eradicating her or his ability to hurt you. There is a great many books and articles out on this subject. God Bless you and I hope you find peace in all that is going on around you.
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Why do we with a narcissistic parent put up with the verbal and psychological abuse that we would divorce such a spouse for. Because we were trained to and they planted those buttons in us for their emotional blackmail in us long ago so that they could continually hoover us into their drama using fear of making them mad, obligation to their needs alone, and guilt if we even have an idea, feeling or want a life or our own.
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Ask yourself this: What did you do that you should become a victim for her horrible personality and traits. And ask what makes you think that you SHOULD be her victim and what gives her the right to treat you this way. Then you will see that she is who she is, and she is getting worse. Forget the why's of her actions. The fact is she is making your life hell and YOU are not getting any younger. I have learned a hard lesson in life - sometimes there are situations or people in you life who are making life a miserable hell for you and nothing you do or don' do is going to "fix" things. So then you have two choices. You stay and be destroyed a little at a time until there is nothing left of you. OR, you can walk away, never look back, start a new life and HAVE THE LIFE YOU DESERVE. You owe something like this, and I don't care if she is your mother or the actual devil, you owe it to YOURSELF to get away. The therapist is right. You can't change or control the relationship between your father and her. But you can get out of this hell. Do it NOW.
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I have one too. I definately set boundries. I moved to Ohio years ago. She has lost all her friends ( few she ever had) She calls and is drama . Dr finds no major issues that she complains about. Dr get glassy eyed listening to her. I do just call once a week. If she gets drama I just look up her symptoms and find it is nothing and do not hold onto it. I hold the phone away from my ear as she goes on and on.
If your parent is in a retirement community then she is looked after safety wise and let her go. Do not call or answer ( get a machine)
She has lifelong psyc issues and she can't ever change now. She is bitter and do not her drag you into bitterness. it is sad we had to have that kind of parent but save yourself and get some distance/less interaction. You care and that is enough. She will never thank you
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Three choices: distance yourself, go low contact, or go no contact. Narcs don't change because they lack the skills of self awareness and growth. If you set boundaries, they disregard them leading only to more conflict which they like because it fuels them. Sadly, their victims/anyone in their path pays the price by constantly feeling drained and in a state of conflict with them. If you want peace in your life, if you want to put yourself first in your own life and be happier and healthier, it seems the avenue is one of acceptance for what the situation is, forgive them for their shortcomings, focus on your own life without them.
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I have a friend who is dedicating her to an extremely selfish and greedy mother. My friend does not have a life at all. She works all day, goes home to a screaming,selfish mother, who demands all of her. My friend says that her mother ran her father to an early grave, being the type of person she was. As I tell her, and she seems to be getting it, STEP AWAY. Your mother seems to be in good hands. It isn't as if you are deserting her. You would not allow a friend to abuse you. Why allow your mother these privileges. Abuse is abuse no matter who it comes from. Incorporating this stress will only weigh heavily on you. You can always keep an eye on her to make certain that she is being treated well. Maybe you need to do as she says, and "mind your own business." See how that works out for her.
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