Only Child. No Choice.

by Nancy
(PA)

I had a very controlling childhood. My mother was terrible and I had to fight for the simplest things such as going to a movie. I was always put down and my decisions questioned. Since I had not much of a life I listened to my father who kept telling me this was “My house” and rather than fight, there would be a “Someday”.


I’m 52 and I know I made the choice to stay because not only was it easier but who would think parents would steer you wrong? Especially my father.

My whole life I heard from my father that he wanted a girl because they never leave you. Now I know what he meant. My mother died 16 years ago and I have been taking care of him ever since. My mother did everything so.

I ended up doing everything. He can’t even write a check.

So, I never got my life. I’m trapped here. I suffer from catholic guilt and when I get up in the morning I’m angry and resentful and bitter. And guilty. He was the good parent too.

He won’t move and he really thinks I have my own life!! I am on my own here. I do have a boyfriend who will help but it really isn’t his responsibility. He’s a lot older than me so he is done with all this.

His mother remained independent until her 90s and even though he was the only child left, he had relatives that would take her to appointments etc, because he worked. Now I’m out of job. I’m so angry that this is how my life turned out.

Bitter in Pa.

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Chugging along
by: Nancy

I chose not to leave home. I keep thinking if I had, he would have gotten married again. He did date someone but when it didn’t work out I think he gave up because he had me.

Right now he doesn’t need an AL. I am the "assisted ".

The thing is I didn’t get married or have kids because I can’t handle responsibility. I kept my life streamlined so I wouldn’t end up like my mother who waited hand and foot on my dad. It’s an Italian thing. She used to cut his meat and iron his underwear. Would YOU want to get married if you saw this growing up?

I foolishly thought this would let me live my life. No strings. But...only child. Catholic.

Thanks for the advice

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keep plugging along, Only Child
by: Anonymous

Yes, you made the choice, but keep hanging in there. I've got guilt too; I promised to take care of my parents and can't leave either. I do have a wonderful husband who's stuck with me through all of it though.

It has put a strain on our relationship though. It's hard, I know. Could you possibly put your dad in an Assisted Living(AL)? I know it's rather expensive, but it would give you some amount of freedom. They would take care of everything he needs and all you would really need to do is write a monthly check and visit (and probably listen to him complain).

You mentioned that you don't have a job - putting dad in an AL would free you up to get at least a part-time job to get you out of the house. That would go a long way to help you feel better about your life.

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