Only Child

by Chris
(Baltimore, MD)

I am an only daughter taking care of my elderly mother. She can only afford adult day care one day a week. She has not started yet and is not sure she wants to go at all.

I am single and self supporting and still working (I am 61). I have no husband or children to help so I am always tired. My mother has a difficult personality, does not like to listen to much of anything and thrives on negative attention.

She likes to irritate me. I think it is because her brother was my grandmothers favorite child. My mother is also a pathological liar. Any suggestions?

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Not alone
by: Anonymous

I feel for you. Often when I am struggling to figure out an answer or having a pity party it helps to look at others. We have similar scenarios except for a couple factors.

I'm only 45 and facing similar aspects. I'm not an only child however all my siblings have passed. I have 3 children however they are in their early 20's and not at a stage that they can be helpful.

I am married but my spouse doesn't really have a clue what I am experiencing as his mother is about 20 years younger than my mom.

I too find myself alone in this trip. It is a frustrating mixed up mess. I always knew I would face this adventure at a younger age than most however that doesn't seem to make this any easier.

Today I called the Area on Aging. My mother is beginning to face more decline and I want to be ready. Financially speaking there really aren't many options for her. She is in the fall through the cracks status. Doesn't make enough to do it on her own but makes too much to get much assistance. It sucks! We sit and wait and wonder.
Good luck to you on your adventure. Keep your head up and it is nice to know you aren't alone.

Only child
by: Anonymous

I am an only child, but I have the help of a wonderful spouse. He looks after my mother while I am at work.

I know that it is true that even if I had siblings, it doesn't mean that they would help with my elderly parent's care. I am sure that if I did have siblings who would not help, that I would find it difficult to cope with.

I don't ask for money from my mother, but if I had siblings I would be tempted to ensure that I was compensated just in case my siblings talk her out of some of her funds. That would be the ultimate injustice, that you do all the work and they end up with what little she has.

Make sure you look after yourself too because this is necessary for both of you.

What an Ordeal!
by: Anonymous

I really feel for you, what an awful situation! I'm guessing you feel very alone right now?
I know that there are no easy solutions to your situation, but try to remember that you have a life of your own, and an absolute right to try to enjoy it.

You say that there are underlying issues with your mum, but honestly, they are not your issues. Don't try to be your mums analyst, it's not your job and don't become the one that empowers her.

If she loves you, she won't want that for you, and if she doesn't love you, why are you trying so hard? I don't want to sound callous but sometimes you just have to decide how far you are prepared to go. That's not selfish, it's just acknowledging that you are a person too! Good luck and best wishes......

Get Your Own Life
by: Anne

Get your own life. If your mother is nasty then don't live with it. My dad is a really nice guy but if he was not, I would be out of there.
Tell your mom, that she either goes to daycare and gives you a break or you are out of there.

Appointed Ones
by: Jann

All I can tell you is that I have two totally able-bodied sisters living right here in the same town with me, and I might as well be an only child. They leave all my 85-year old mom's care to me.

Just didn't want you to feel cheated because you are an only child because most times that makes no difference. Maybe we are appointed to carry the load, I don't know. At least you don't have to feel the resentment that us with siblings have who don't do their part. It's all so hard no matter what the situation. But as difficult as it is, some of us have empathy for the once who gave us life and some don't.

God sees, God knows who we all are. Hang in there sweetie, do your best, and know that you are not alone. I wish you the best and I pray every day that it will all come out in the wash for all of us who are the appointed ones!

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