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Your mother is never coming to live in your home. The decision is made and irreversible. She can't move into your home without your active consent and project-management, which will not be forthcoming, which you are fully in charge of. So just nod and smile. There's no need to discuss anything unless it flatters her and you feel like it.
My stay-at-home SIL - the one who wasn't quick enough off the mark when it came to running like the wind - once cautiously broached the subject of how things were going with my mother living with me. "I wouldn't recommend it," I said. "Why?"
In fact I didn't need to ask why, I knew very well that MIL had been chipping away at SIL's barriers and was attempting to use my situation as a model. Happily for SIL, the more immediately comparable precedent was her husband's mother, who had only been kept out of their marital home by dint of crucifixes, garlic, and everything short of armed sentries.
Don't fear lunch today, it will be fine. Pretend the upset never happened. Tell her it's lovely to see her. Be extremely busy in the kitchen. When it's over, remind her how lovely it is to have her own peaceful space - perhaps daughter could bring some friends round to rehearse their X Factor routine?
Thank you for your articulate, perceptive and finally funny reply. My husband wants to frame it. I felt consoled but also a little more confident having read it. As my daughter would say "You rock". T
There was just one teeny weeny flaw in this otherwise eminently sensible plan. Namely, your mother.
One of my SIL's moved 10,000 miles away from my MIL (literally, I mean - she went to Australia). The other, like you, is holding out from ten minutes away thanks to a lovely husband and adamant ground rules. But don't underestimate the strain of keeping those barriers in place.
I have never had an easy relationship with my mom but during that time it was very difficult and we lost our tempers frequently because my dad made all the decisions financially ( really bad decisions). He told me he was sorry that he never taught her anything but that her anxiety and ruminating constantly deterred him from talking to her. She gets angry very easily which was why I left home and never went back as soon as I left for school, which I worked almost full time hours to pay myself in order to be independent.
At the same time my husband my dad was dying he was dealing with his mothers sickness and subsequent death at 64yrs old across the country. The toll of it all,including my mothers anger and needing to learn to live independently at 55 yrs old has been difficult. She doesn't drive and refuses now to even take transit now at 69 yrs old and in reasonable health. She has acted 80 most of the time she has been widowed, with me taking her shopping every week to get groceries and liquor and going to her non urgent doctor visits, which she insists I go in with her for. Over the years we have not always treated each other with due respect, but I am working on it.
I went back and upgraded my degree so I could get a better job at 45 yrs old and now I have a career. My mom has decided she needs to live with me because they are phasing out her subsidized housing and the housing market is becoming out of reach to buy and rental unit availability is 1 percent vacancy.. I can not see her on the streets, but having her living with me would be almost intolerable. Even if we got another unit with three bedrooms they are tiny and have 30 steps. The only bathroom even has steps up and down to it, which could be problematic for even my husband and I in the future. Mom is use to having things her own way and I know it would take a toll on my health and marriage. I feel caught between a rock and a hard place.
Ask yourself this - if Mom did what she could and you did not feel guilty about not being able to absolutely everything for her, could life with her be good again? If not, then your brother has a point, and she would not be less happy than she is now by moving to assisted living, where she also might not feel as entitled to having everything done for her. Lots of people have some sense that they can't run a staff member ragged 24x7 but a son or daughter they see as owing it to them. You can't right now imagine it, because of the false guilt, but she and you might both be happier with her in assisted living, and she might not be entitled to have the deciding vote on it. But, if that is not what you want, and you thing you can change some things, then by all means set limits that make your life with mom not just tolerable but livable. Think outside the box of guilt you have been living in. I know that is easier said than done. And do realize that "self-absorbed" is a product of fear, illness, depression, and waning social and empathy skills. There may be medication and.or counseling that would help with that too.
My cats wandering more think hes fed up with this too! LOL and HUG
She is a sweet, caring & loving person BUT, is so dependent on me to be her filler of lonliness even if she has friends popping in everyday. I do her hair for her every week, make sure she has meals that I cook and freeze in single meal sizes so she can just heat up. Take her to Dr's visits, take care of all her finances and accounts. All this I have no problem with, it is the mental strain.
She is extremely sensitive, and always thinks she is putting one out, or that we are talking behind her back, etc. If, I lay in bed on a Sunday, which doesn't happen often, I had a knock on my door, "when are you getting up, I am lonely."
Sunday If I am home is my only day I feel I can "chill", and my bedroom is the only room that is really my private place. If I choose to spend the afternoon watching TV or resting and reading, in my own space, she feels like I am neglecting her, and I tend to feel guilty.
If my friend (male) comes to visit, she needs to control the whole visit, like he is there to visit her, I know this sounds selfish, I don't mind her being there, but she needs to also understand that ok now let me give them some time alone too, and perhaps go to her room. We have one living room.
She has often mentioned, that she will never go to a home, so I have her for the rest of her life.
I have told her that one day she will need frail care, which I cannot do, and will have to look at going into assisted living one day.
She does not even want to discuss this.
I sometimes feel like I am being throttled!!!!
If anyone has a similar situation, would love to chat. Need to speak to someone who understands. She loves me dearly, and would do anything, but it is the mental strain more than anything.
Do you have family members nearby who could help out. Maybe if not on a daily basis ; they could spend a weekend now and again to give you the time to get away for a weekend or more.
It isn't a matter of being all about anyone...it is about a balanced life for you. You've done a remarkable job I am sure of caring for your Mother; howver, we all reach the point of needing to take care of ourselves.
Our responsbility to our parent is to see that they are safe and comfortable. We need to be physically and emotionally healthy to provide them the support they need.
Good luck and god bless!
Wow thanks! Just getting that off my chest was helpful!!
I too am taking care of my mother in my home and it has been more exausting than I ever thought it would be.
I am also married, but my kids are grown, so at least I don't have to worry about neglecting the children ( which eventually would happen ).
When they are lonely they become extremely dependent on you to fulfill their time more often than not which leads to a lot of things not getting done.
Your children are young and need you...that in itself is a full time job.
Talk to her about assisted living or somehting else, just be sure to explain to her that your not leaving her completely to others, that you'll always visit her.
Find some way to let her know your there for her, but that you also have a family that needs you too.
Maybe when the kids are grown and you and your hubby has had a little down time she could move in.
Whatever you decide, be sure to talk it out with your Husband and kids because it will effect them too.
it's a 24/7 job ...even though you love them with all your heart :)
Does your mom have any hobbies? Does she enjoy her own company? She must think you're her entertainment committee. I told my mom one time when she got possessive like your mom is that I wasn't her entertainment committee, didn't want to be, didn't have time to be, and she should be ashamed of wasting her time feeling sorry for herself when she could use her talents doing something worthwhile, make everyday count, be thankful you're alive. You aren't guaranteed a tomorrow so why waste today being miserable and making everyone else around miserable too.
I agree with naheaton, that pity party train gets real old, real fast.
You deserve your freedom. You need to build a new life. You're a parent with kids who need you. Mom needs to get a number and wait in line.