I had mom move in with us after dad killed himself because she couldn't stop vomiting. I was worried we'd lose her, too. I'm divorced and have two daughters. We got a puppy to help cheer up the household.

Six years later, one kid moved out and one's living here with her boyfriend. All about to graduate from college.

I'm ready to get back to living after being cooped up here with my mom. She's sweet, but she started the non-stop talking like grandma did when she hit 80, It's driving me crazy.

She made me promise to tell her if she ever got as annoying as her mom was. I don't think she can stop it, so telling her would just hurt her feelings for no reason. Her mom drove her nuts from three states away. I never get a break!

Most of the litany is a non-stop rundown of all her health concerns. I'm tired of asking if she told her doctor. I just want her to have a friend.

She always had my dad as her best friend, but I can't be that for her. It grosses me out to even hug her anymore because I feel like I'm his stand-in. I wish she could meet someone, but she never wants to leave the house.

How can I quit feeling guilty about wanting to get away from her and renew my friendships? How can I get her interested in having her own friends? I can't be her everything! The kids have taken to eating upstairs so they can do their homework without her constant talking.

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Welcome, JustTired!

A couple of thoughts...

1. Mom needs to see a geriatric psychiatrist.

2. Mom needs a social, congregate living setting, not your home. She is clearly DESPERATE for company. Find her a good IL or AL, depending on her level of need.

3. If those are financially out of the question, get her to Adult Day Care.
Helpful Answer (10)
Reply to BarbBrooklyn

No one seems to be addressing the fact that your father did not die a normal death. He committed suicide. The grief of this is a different kind of grief. You and your mother each need a grief counselor to help process the emotions that are bound to be coming up as a result of this. I know you said your grandmother also did the nonstop talking, so there is a learned pattern, but my guess for your mom is that it's a way of processing all that has happened to her, even if she's not actually talking about that. She's needing someone to listen. She's needing someone to care (that's what the medical concerns are likely really about). You love her and care, but this is overwhelming for you and you need someone who can come in and meet her need. Yes, friends would help, but I honestly think she needs counseling/therapy to help her process her husband's suicide. (I have a younger friend whose husband killed himself, and it utterly wrecked her life until she got help.)
Helpful Answer (9)
Reply to StacyAa

Consider hiring a companion aid for your Mom. Can be someone with no special medical training except understanding someone with memory impairment and cognitive issues. Someone with a driver's license to take her out for errands and entertainment. Could be a nursing student. Doesn't have to be every day, but just enough so that you feel like you've gotten a break and can recharge/refresh yourself.
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Reply to Geaton777

You have choices. Your mother can be placed in an appopriate care facility for her needs.
You can put her into adult day care and insist that she go as a condition of her remaining in your home.
You can hire a companion to spend time with her and take her out.
What you have to do is pay her less attention. Tell her that you are not her doctor and do not want to hear about her health problems.
Also, you set a time at night when she goes to her room. After that time there's nothing. No talking to you. The kitchen is closed too. She can watch tv in her room. Or read a book. Or take up knitting, whatever. Get her some snacks and drink boxes to keep in her room if she wants a snack. You have to set boundaries. This means speaking plainly to her that you and the kids do not want to talk to her every waking moment. That there has to be alone time every day because everyone needs a break from her constant talking. When it's time for the kids to do their homework, she goes and watches tv in her room. No exceptions. You would also do well to lay down the law with your kids too. No eating meals in their bedrooms. That is unacceptable. They eat at the table and do their homework before or after supper. Not during. Set some boudaries and in the meantime, look into some assisted living facilities for her. She would get socialization with people her own age too.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to BurntCaregiver

Your mother “made me promise to tell her if she ever got as annoying as her mom was”. Well, now she is. Have you followed your “promise” and told her? If not, why not?

Your 'answer' to that is “I don't think she can stop it, so telling her would just hurt her feelings for no reason”. Your guess may be true, but it’s not the answer to the question. Even if it does “hurt her feelings”, would she understand? If she understands, would it help her “stop it”?

Your “I don’t think she can stop it” is not based on trying your options. These include telling her what and where she could do to continue staying with you, and what her options are if she doesn’t make the effort. At present, you are accepting this, and she has no incentive to change. Your responsibility to your mother and to your “promise” is to lay it on the line.

We regularly get posters who have cut off reasonable options because of THEIR fear of HIS or HER “hurt feelings”. It’s the way to let your future depend on YOUR fears. For decades.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to MargaretMcKen

This sudden talking needs to be brought up to her doctor. Go with her and hand a note to the receptionist telling the doctor what is going on and the same thing happened to grandmom. Ask her to let you go in with her. Don't be afraid to talk to him in front of her. This is not the time to worry about hurting her feelings. This is the time to find out why she is acting this way. Could be anxiety and medication may help.

If Mom can take care of herself, then you can have a life. I have a number a friends that are now widows starting in their 60s and a couple in there 70s. They have all gotten back into life. 2 at the ages of 72 and 73 have boyfriends. Your Mom should have been finding socialization 6 years ago other than your family. If she was an introvert and Dad was her friend, thats OK. Introverts usually like their own company. My Mom was a widow at 78. She had her Church and friends who were also widows.

If you want to be with friends, then be with friends. Hire a Mom sitter on her dime. If she has money, once you find out whats causing the talking, maybe you can place her in an Assisted Living.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to JoAnn29
NeedHelpWithMom Feb 9, 2023
The note is a great suggestion! I also called before appointments to leave messages for my mom’s doctor if I didn’t want to say something in front of mom. Or leaving a message in the portal works too.
Well, my opinion is that she needs to be with people her own age. Day care, hire someone or AL, perhaps to prepare you and her for eventual MC.

You have a right to your own life why not do something to regain it? Your kids deserve better as well.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to MeDolly

I am terribly sorry about the loss of your father. I understand your concern for your mom.

You deserve a life for yourself as well. I had this problem with my mom too. She was very active before but as she aged with Parkinson’s disease she started to withdraw from others and became totally dependent upon me. I heard everything and it is emotionally draining.

We care about our mothers and often place their needs above ours and then we start to feel frustrated and hopeless.

It’s challenging when we make suggestions such as attending a senior community center and they won’t go. I even offered to go with my mom for awhile until she would get use to it and she still wouldn’t consider the idea.

My mom would admit that she had some anxiety and depression but wouldn’t take meds for them. Later on she agreed to try medication and it made a world of difference.

Speak with her doctor about the changes in her behavior and discuss any options.

Wishing you and your mom all the best.
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to NeedHelpWithMom

Your Mom's best friend (your father, you stated) committed suicide. This has not been addressed and needs attention. She has begun talking compulsively and non-stop, perhaps due to unaddressed depression and anxiety, as did her mother at age 80 years. Handing a note to her doctor when you accompany her to a visit is a good idea. Make sure your mother signs the HIPA release at your Mom's Dr's office so that you can talk freely with Dr. Another way to give a doctor valuable information is to FAX a concise overview of the problems your mother is experiencing: social isolation, unaddressed anxiety over the suicide, compulsive talking and obsessing on medical issues. A geriatric Psychiatrist might be a good person to consult about meds. Is it possible that your mother might have drifted into early stages Dementia? The social isolation will cause that to increase more rapidly. Hiring a 'sitter' for your Mom or transferring her to an Assisted Living are two alternatives. Do you work full time? Is she just sitting a home alone all day, waiting to barrage you will non-stop talk when you hit the door? The current setup is not helping your Mom or you. Handwrite a concise list of serious concerns, and either drop this off for your mother's doctor or FAX the one page overview to the doctor, days prior to a visit. And, yes, go into the doctor visit with your mother. Your mother might lack 'friendship making skills' due to anxiety and depression over Dad's suicide. I think you, too, could benefit from mental health therapy, as you likely have never had time to stop and grieve, with the multi-generational living situation you have been in since he committed suicide. Your mother's incessant talking is a compulsive behavior, and 'No', she can't help it. It sounds to be an "OCD" behavior and she needs help. You personally do deserve a good life, deserve time with friends, need to re-build your life following your father's suicide. Get help from a counselor who can assist you in re-building your life, one step at a time.
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to fluffy1966

Is there an Adult Day program in your area?
Is there a Senior Center that has activities?
If so to either ...or both.. get mom involved.
She will have contact with others, you will get a break and when she gets home she will have something else to talk about.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to Grandma1954

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