My 92 year old narcissistic ( lifelong) mother refuses to believe she has age related dementia and memory loss. i have posted on here frequently in the past due to her emotionally abusive behavior toward me . I have successfully established Shipt delivery of her groceries so I only interact with her once or twice a month and immediately curtail the visit when she starts on her delusion of me making her sleep on a 69 year old mattress ( she has bought 2 new ones since moving into her senior apt 5 years ago.) Long story I wont go into, other than to say she feels it is the matresses faults that her back hurts, and not the fact that she has body wide arthritis, refuses to take muscle relaxer pills her Dr suggested , and she sits in her apt all day having a pity party with little to no exercise. I had Adult Protective Services in to see I feared and suspected , because she is still independent in cares, cooking and basic finances, this does not meet the definition of incompetence so I can activate POA ...even though she believes my brother and sister in laws new grandson is their baby, and that her Dr delivered me as a baby ( he is about 20 years younger than me) . i just had surgery yesterday and she is mad as a wet hen and barraging me with calls about this mattress delusion. I have blocked her already on my cell, but hate to block our house phone if she has an emergency, but Im not taking any more calls. I told her not to keep calling me as I am trying to rest and get strength back..she of course doesnt care, because I was " nasty" because I told her she need to accept the reality of her memory loss and early dementia per her Dr and APS worker. She has been presented with receipts for the mattresses and still will not accept reality. I will continue to have her groceries delivered but that is it. She has been reimbursing me so far , but if that stops, her groceries stop. Her Senior Living community director is aware of situation and has been encouraging her to tour assisted living there but she wants no part of it and truly believes she has no limitations. Ive been the sole back up for her and my late dad for close to 20 years now and I just dont have the mental or physical energy to keep dealing with her ..I pray for the day when she passes and puts both of us out of her misery. My Dr attributes all my significant health issues for the past 25 years from the stress of this poor dad , who she beat down emotionally, apologized to me on his death bed that she would try to also tear me down. Trying not to let her. I am 68 with a wonderful husband and family that deserve me to be around.

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While you wait for the crisis, you are probably wondering whether you go non-contact or whether you try to keep the relationship going in spite of its problems.

One line you could consider trying is to say ‘I can’t come to see you until you are being properly cared for’. You fill in the ‘care/ facility’ that seems best. It’s time-out, without being permanent.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to MargaretMcKen

"I told her she need to accept the reality of her memory loss and early dementia".

Just give that up.

If you break your ankle, it swells & hurts! You can see & feel it.

If tiny cells in the brain break, the brain cannot see & feel it.

Just work at keeping her safe from a distance (as you can).

Then, as Lea says *await the crises*. A crises will force change. Welcome to the club!
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Reply to Beatty

My advice is to realize your mother suffers from dementia and nothing you say or do will get thru to her, including the mattress debacle. Read up on the subject to learn all you can about how dementia presents itself, and then sit back and wait for mom to have a crisis that forces her out of IL and into Memory Care Assisted Living. In the meantime, cut your contact, as you've done, and let her ranting calls go to voice mail where you can delete them instead of listening to them. As long as you can be reached in case of a real emergency, that's all you need to be do. Send her groceries as you've been doing, and if she stops paying for them, she can eat in her senior living community if she's hungry, or figure out her OWN way of getting groceries.

There is no magic advice you can get here. Many people are in a situation like yours waiting for a crisis to happen which will get their stubborn parent placed appropriately. Until that happens, protect your own health so you don't die before she does. That happens many times due to the stress these women cause us. Don't be a statistic tygrlly! You've been dealing with this woman for 25 years, and "trying" not to let her tear you down. What are you going to do now to insure that she doesn't? To stop "trying" and make changes to see it happen? Start by taking a nice vacation with your wonderful husband for some well deserved alone time on a beach somewhere. Call a travel agent tomorrow or go online and book something yourself. Take a step to help yourself!

Good luck
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to lealonnie1

tygrlly1, your Mom's brain is broken, of course she would be in in denial that she has dementia.

Learn all you can about dementia so you won't be surprised at anything your Mom is doing now and in the future.

Go to the blue/green bar at the top of the page.... click on CARE TOPICS.... click on Alzheimer's/Dementia to reach all the excellent articles explaining this disease.
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Reply to freqflyer
tygrlly1 Oct 26, 2022
Nothing she does surprises me any more. I have been very well self educated about dementia and Alzheimers and if she had just dementia , I would be so much more able and compassionate and willing to comtinue to try to handle this ....but it is a lifetime of her being enabled by my poor handicapped dad, who gave into her every whim just to survive her constant whining and verbal abuse. My brother and I endured a childhood of her extreme emotional abuse, entitlement and narcissism. My brain is also becoming broken with her constant bullying to get her way and volcanic meltdowns when I say no or set boundaries to preserve my sanity and that of my husband and our marriage. She has rebuked every kind way I have tried to help her, and get her help so she can continue to live in her own lovely senior apartment. All the knowledge in the world about why she is the way she is will not help if she refuses to accept her current reality and continues to sabotage everything everyone is trying to do to help. Wondering what you would suggest in this scenario...still competent but mentally ill and refusing any and all assistance which doesnt fit with her denial that she has any decline, and that everyone else is the one with the problem.
I’m so sorry. I am not there yet but experience many of these things as well. I know you want to live your life. I unfortunately had a bad divorce and I moved in with my mom. Big mistake I am in California rent is so high and I am stuck with her. She tells stories on me. Makes phone calls and messes things up and I have to fix. The mattress debacle must be more than you can handle. That’s just horrible that you beat down so bad and having medical issues. I’m next. Actually I had to have radical hysterectomy last year and she made it all about her. We have got this I know it feels good to vent. Also I am only one......
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Reply to Bondgirlbelle
tygrlly1 Oct 26, 2022
Sending a hug to you, my sister in misery....Ill keep you in my prayers. Some women should have never had children. I am so tired of people telling me that I should feel honored to be able to look after her, or that I should be more patient because of her age. She presents a very different facade to the world, but turns into a tantruming she devil when she hears the word no or when we try to live our own life or care for our own health. I pray that you can somehow escape, but from personal experience I know all too well those tentacles reach way too far. Know that I care about you, and so many of us that are trapped in this miserable cycle. I have a brother but no help there....Hugs...
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