Mom the Barfly

by Wynette
(Cullowhee, NC)

Hello, I am new to this, my first discussion so bear with me.My mother is 85 years old, to be 86 next month. She lost her husband of 13 years back in late October, he was 85. I am the youngest of three daughters and live twenty minutes from my mother. I also have a sister and brother-in-law close by, my oldest sister is five hours away.I was placed as POA for my step-dad (also for my mom) and was his advocate for 1.5 years till his death.

In that time I learned much about his condition, the system and how this can affect other members of the family. We had to place him in long-term care due to his condition. I am grateful that it was a good care facility.

I was able to get my mom to go to grieving counseling through the local senior center when her husband was failing rapidly in his health. It took some doing, she only went four times and after her husband's death she would not go back.

My mom is a very independent woman, she volunteers at the local thrift store 4 times a week. After her husband's death, the house was just too much to care for so we found a small 2 bedroom apartment in town on the first floor for her. She still drives.

Mom has COPD and asthma and when it gets bad enough she has an oxygen concentrator for use. I was hoping to get her to volunteer in the library or a place where she is not exposed to so many allergens like the thrift store, that has not happened.

Her behavior over the past year has changed as well as her endurance. She has a small dog that she wants to keep in the car all the time when she goes places (even to volunteer) as she does
not want the dog to be alone for long periods of time at home.

This means that the dog stays in the car a lot. Many talks about the heat and that she may get fined.

What has happened since her late husband went into long term care is that she goes out to a local bar almost every night and drinks. She will have up to four stiff drinks and sometimes stays out till 11pm at night.

I know how much she is out because I know the person who owns this bar and I also have a tracker on her phone. We live in a small town. On top of that she takes many types of medication.

Several times I have gone there and taken her home. It is then that I have to let her know I am concerned. She just looks at me with a blank stare.

There are several dents on her car (new car) and the interior is like someone living in it, full of garbage. Dog smell all in it cause she keeps the dog in there a lot.

I have talked to her about getting involved at the Senior Center or going back to the group therapy. She won't have it. She wants to be about young college kids in a bar at night and this concerns me greatly.

I talked to my two other sibling about this and they don't care for it. I seem to be the one that has to take action and discuss matters with my mom. I guess my sisters don't want to feel her wrath.

I can handle the constant insults from her and her negativity, that I can handle. I am trying to save her the embarrassment of getting a DUI or even worse harming someone else while she is behind the wheel.Any feedback is greatly appreciated, thanks for listening.

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