I am my mother's sole caregiver since 2021 and I live with her. I have a sister but she only helps to take her to doctor's appointments. When she was being discharged from the hospital my sister said to me- "You're on your own now". Nice, right?

I have been seeing my boyfriend for 8 years. He always wanted to move to South Carolina but I didn't want to leave my mom alone because even though she didn't get diagnosed with all her health issues until 2021- COPD, Congestive Heart Failure, high blood pressure, erosive gastritis, low thyroid, etc., I knew she wasn't well. She never wanted to see a doctor. She was nearly dead until she finally agreed to go.

So back to the boyfriend, he got fed up and moved in July 2023. We are doing long distance but he is getting tired of waiting. He wants my mother and I to move. My mom refuses. I'm stuck in the middle. What do I do? I asked my sister if she could take care of her. Of course- she said no. She said she would put her right in a nursing home. If my mom gets to the point that I can no longer take care of her by myself then I would have to do that but not right now.

What would you do? If I don't move soon- I will lose my boyfriend. If I move- my mom will go in a nursing home and I will feel awful for the rest of my life. I have been feeling completely stressed and depressed for such a long time now. I just want to feel happy again.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you so much!

You're telling us you'll be miserable with EITHER decision you make!

Move to SC, get mom in a SNF "and feel awful for the rest of your life."

Or live with mom and lose your boyfriend who you've been with for 8 years.

And all because mother refuses to move.

Who's holding YOU hostage here, my friend? Who's put you in this miserable position in the first place?

Put the ball back in MOTHER'S court now and let HER make the decision FOR you:

She either chooses to move to SC with you or she chooses to move into a nursing home.

Why on earth does SHE hold ALL the cards here? There in lies your mistake. She's been given way too much power. By YOU.

You're fortunate the bf wants her in SC at ALL.
Helpful Answer (14)
Reply to lealonnie1
JeanLouise Mar 8, 2024
I am amazed he wants Mom to join them.
I think mom AND bf are both being selfish.

Personally, I think the best thing for YOU is to 1) place mom in an AL and 2) tell your BF "It was fun while it lasted, but I'm moving on". Find a career where you can support yourself, so you NEVER have to depend on another person to live. If need be, look into grants for students and go back to school to get your degree. Pursue a career that will afford you both purpose and financial independence. Then you can seek a relationship with someone who will view you as an equal partner, not someone who can be strong-armed into making a decision that will leave you unhappy, no matter what you choose.

If you are getting "pulled" in two different directions, cut the cord on both sides and come up with a third option that suits YOU.
Helpful Answer (14)
Reply to notgoodenough
Karsten Mar 7, 2024
In my humble opinion, this is the best comment of all. UpsetCareGiver is being pulled between two selfish people, and I am guessing UpsetCareGiver is such a good and caring soul, she wants to please everyone. These two selfish people have been taking advantage of her kindness.

So yes, notgoodenough (though I suspect he/she is very good enough) has wise words here. Tough to implement on both sides but the right action.
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OP had her mind made up to live with mother and care for her at home w/o moving to SC all along. She just came here for backup of that decision, to hear she's a Saint, the boyfriend is a bum for even asking her to move to SC WITH mother, and that we all support her. Period.

OP, if that's what you want to do, then do it! You surely do not need the "support" of a bunch of strangers on the internet telling you you're "doing the right thing" because you won't get that. Ever. What happens when mother dies and you're all alone, no job, no boyfriend, no nothing?

You point your finger at the sister you think is "horrible", yet she's living the life SHE wants and you are not. Believe it or not, there IS a compromise between sheer misery and depression devoting your entire life to mother, and being happy. Doing enough for Maxine that she's cared for w/o giving up your entire life in the process. To the best of my knowledge, the "bible" says nothing about that, whether you're Christian or Jewish. And btw, Maxine at 79 can live another 2 DECADES. My mother lived to 95 with afib, congestive heart failure along with dementia, neuropathy and having taken 95 falls. In a wheelchair.

The boyfriend can be dumped, fine. But take a realistic outlook on whose going to be super thrilled to share his life with you AND your mother down the road? I got married 2 years before my parents moved here and invaded my life, as an only child. I set them up in Independent Living and then Assisted Living, then Memory Care when needed. And it STILL was nearly a full time job for me! Make no mistake that managing an elders life at home or in managed care is a LOT. I am fortunate my husband has the patience of Job, and even then, it was tough for over 10 YEARS of our marriage. But it was manageable. I was happy AND caring for my parents at the same time AND working a full time job for a lot of the time so I could maximize my Social Security benefits. Now I have stage 4 cancer and a wonderful husband to care for me, thank God.

Stick around & read the forum. Learn and absorb the messages here. Realize the messages you DON'T want to hear are those that are most important for you TO hear.

Good luck to you.
Helpful Answer (14)
Reply to lealonnie1
Missymiss Mar 16, 2024
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Let the boyfriend go.
Stay as your Mother's fulltime caregiver.
Your committment is to your Mother.

Move with your boyfriend.
Make a life with him.
Accept your Mother needs a new solution for her health care needs.

Brutal choice.

Which one does your gut instict tells you is right for you?

Which would you regret more?
Losing your relationship with your boyfriend? Or losing your identity of being Mom's Caregiver?

How to have both?
Could you be with your BF but remain a loving daughter who calls, visits & advocates for your Mother?
Helpful Answer (13)
Reply to Beatty

If your mom is so bad off that she needs a nh, then she can’t have just one person taking care of her.
Helpful Answer (13)
Reply to PeggySue2020

I wouldn't sacrifice the only life I'll ever have for mom. If you love your boyfriend and want a life together, you deserve that. If you lose him and never find anyone else (because no one wants a relationship with you because your mom always comes first), you'll feel awful for the rest of your life. So in your mind you've set up feeling awful for the rest of your life whether you choose your mom or your boyfriend. This isn't a good way to think.

Then the nursing home - there are good nursing homes where a person gets 24/7 care by professionals. This could benefit your mom a lot. She'd have friends, outings, birthday celebrations, entertainment, medical supervision, visiting musicians and pets, and transportation to medical appointments. That looks a whole lot better than living with either you or your sister.

Go visit several skilled nursing facilities. Or maybe assisted living facilities, if she doesn't need skilled nursing yet. You will be pleasantly surprised.
Helpful Answer (12)
Reply to Fawnby

Your sister is the smart one here. Be more like her. Get your mother into AL and get on with your life.
Helpful Answer (12)
Reply to olddude
JeanLouise Mar 8, 2024
Men are not as patient as women when it comes to moving on. You can't stay with mom forever. Don't waste your youth like I did. I had a daughter when I was young in a very early marriage. Met a guy after my divorce, and he wanted me to move with him back to Massachusetts after he got set up in his dental practice. He told me what he wanted, and I wanted the same thing. We both wanted a commitment. I was to go and get further training and a job. Family mess got in the way for the both of us. He had problems at home. I got stuck in a mess taking care of my mom and my disabled sister. My dad left me holding the bag and went to live with his girlfriend. I made one trip one weekend and stayed with a relative. I could tell he was disappointed because he wanted me to come to him but he read my actions as being otherwise. What happened was he ended up marrying someone else in the next state from where I lived in the DMV area. I ended up in a hellish relationship with a second loser husband. He ended up divorced from the woman he married. I made some very crappy and self-destructive moves due to my first husband screaming about paying child support a whopping $130.00, and I was in a state of confusion. Even though I worked and was in college here in my hometown, things were never the same for me.

I missed my chances. After a second divorce, I stayed single for seven years before I met my late husband, and he died in 2016.

I contacted this guy the following year. I sent him a Christmas card, after I looked him up thirty four years later. We had one conversation, and I didn't hear from him anymore. I sent him a thinking of you card but never heard back. So, I let this go. Two years later, I found his obituary.

I'm saying all this to say; go visit your boyfriend. If nothing else, you will be able to tell if you want to be with this man or not. Don't let your mother's needs take precedence over your own happiness. Men get tired and move on, and you will become a distant memory in their minds. I wish I had the guts that some of these young women have today. I would have flat out told my father, I'm out of here. Handle you own damn mess you created with your wife and your family, took my daughter and went to live in another place. Now, I'm an old woman, scared all the time and live with a house full of cats. LOL The two men I loved are dead. One was during my youth, and the other was during my middle-aged years.

My advice to you is go alone to visit even if you have to pay for care to come in to care for your mom while you take your trip. Do not drag your mother along on this trip. You deserve a trip away from your mother. Don't let your emotions bounce you all over the place. The question is this; do you and your boyfriend want a stable commitment?
Helpful Answer (12)
Reply to Scampie1
Beatty Mar 8, 2024
Warm ((((hugs))) to you Scampie.

"My advice to you is go alone to visit even if you have to pay for care to come in to care for your mom while you take your trip".

An excellant plan.
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In one of your responses, you say that your boyfriend abandoned you at your lowest. I don't see it that way. If moving was always the plan, he finally made a choice to stop waiting and make it reality. You have made your choice to stay with your mother. But, you resent her because she is unwilling to move with you.
You are not stuck.
You are just so overwhelmed with emotions that it is hard to think clearly. And you have two people pulling on you to do what they want. It is up to you to decide what YOU want. If you feel you belong with your mother, you can:
a) Let the boyfriend go. He got tired of waiting. And he may get tired of the long distance relationship, waiting for you to make a decision to be with him.
b) Tell your mother that you are moving. She has a choice. She is welcome to move with you so you can continue as her caregiver. Or she can help choose an Assisted Living Facility or Skilled Nursing Facility and let you go live your life.
In a healthy parent/child relationship, a parent would not want to be a burden and would want to see their children living their best life.
Is it possible that you have doubts about your future with this boyfriend, and you are using your mother as your excuse to keep from moving on?

As some respondents have suggested here, your mother may be selfishly manipulating you. Only you can ask yourself if that is the situation. If you are not moving on with the life you feel you deserve out of guilt, then perhaps it is time to stand up to mom and make it clear what your decisions are going to be.
You do not have to feel guilty about choosing a nursing home. And you can not expect your sister or anyone else to take on the burden that you have chosen.

Good luck. I hope you can clear your mind and decide what is best for you.
Yes, I said best for you. Not what your mother wants, not what your boyfriend wants. And if you are afraid of making a "wrong" decision, that you will later regret, You might. Life is a journey, and sometimes we find ourselves down the wrong path. But there are always new paths to discover, ones we can't see yet.
Helpful Answer (12)
Reply to CaringWifeAZ

Are you over the age of 18? If the answer is 'yes' then you aren't stuck anywhere or in anything. You are choosing to let mommy have total control of your life through her abusive neediness.

Do you know what abusive neediness is? It is when a person has needs and is dependent on another and uses their needs or conditions as weapons to manipulate and control the life of the person or people they are dependent on.

This is what your mother is doing to you.

You are very lucky to have a good man who is willing to take your mother in. He will move on if you don't make a decision and well he should.

Let me tell you something else too. Your mother is dependent on you to meet her needs. When someone is dependent on another they are not the one who makes the decisions or "allows" anything. So take the word "allow" right out of your vocabulary when dealing with your mother.

Tell her plainly that these are the choices you are giving her.

She moves with you to live with your boyfriend in South Carolina or she goes into a nursing home where she is. No debate. No discussion. Either it's move or a nursing home.

As for how you will feel guilty and depressed over it for a long time.
Grow up and drop the baby act and the fear of feeling guilty and depressed if you don't give mommy her own way. That's ridiculous. Aren't you embarrassed by such nonsense?

You're offering your mother a choice on how to stay out of a nursing home. Whether or not she likes it or it's exactly what she wants and how she wants it is up to her not you. You've offered to take her with you. Either she goes with you or to a nursing home. That's it.
Helpful Answer (11)
Reply to BurntCaregiver
UpsetCaregiver Mar 7, 2024
I know I am not physically stuck but mentally, spiritually, and emotionally- you betcha. I don't want to just abandon my mother. I understand where she's coming from. She doesn't want to move now with all her health problems from a city and house she loves. And my boyfriend told me for years that he would like to move but he NEVER would leave without me. I figured once my mom would pass- we would move at the same time. Then he just picks up and leaves and expects me to as well. He knew the situation I was in. He abandoned and left me when I was at my lowest.
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