Want My Life Back

by Deborah

I left my alcoholic husband and moved back home 3 years ago to live with my parents at their insistence . Last year my father died. My mother is 89 and in fairly good health and I am 62 and single again. My mother is still driving but did run a stop sign and hit a car. No one was hurt.

She cooks every night and leaves a disgusting mess when I come home. I don’t even like what she cooks. But I clean everything up and try to eat it.

She makes all kinds of plans for me to go places with her like free lunches at retirement homes and I refuse to go and get a guilt trip. I have 2 other sisters but they feel I owe it to her cause she took me in.

On disability and don’t have much money but I buy everything but the food ( except for my own yogurts, bread and snacks and coffee) plus I give her 200/month.

I have rheumatoid arthritis, pre-diabetes, and a host of other immune disorders to deal with and my bridge broke and I have no front teeth until I can get the money saved. I’m to the point where I can’t even sit and eat with her because she shoves everything I’m her mouth like she’s going to the electric chair.

Now we’re fighting everyday. Everything she does and says makes me cringe. I’m at the end of my rope.

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I understand
by: Anonymous

I'm sorry about your situation. I can understand how you feel.
There are many similarities to my mom.

Like your mom, when my mom cooks (one or two time a week) she also makes a terrible mess. I wait patiently until after dinner, and then I go over everything and clean up what she already cleaned (it's not clean believe me).

When it's time to eat she doesn't even wait to sit down and then take her food, she stands up starts putting food on her plate and eating it while she's dishing it out as if she's starving to death. Nothing could be further from the truth.. she eats a lot.

She always complains that she's gaining weight and that she doesn't know why because "she doesn't eat that much".

She slurps her food and also sucks it in and inhales it. I try to sit next to her but after awhile I can't take it, so I will go and sit in front of the TV.

The other day I was going out to the store and she was supposed to go with me. Her legs were bothering her though, so she said she couldn't go. I went by myself, which was wonderful btw.
The next day she asked if we were going out. I was like.. no, I don't need to today.

I know she gets tired of sitting in the house but she refuses to get involved at the senior center or go get a library card so she can get some books.

I heard her tell my one sister that her life is boring and honestly, I don't care. I am done making suggestions.

We are supposed to take her to her sister's for a couple of days so my husband and I can get some time alone. She's now saying she doesn't think she can go. I told her that she would be sitting in our vehicle and then sitting in her sister's house. She sits here all day , so what's the difference?

She has this opportunity to get away but she acts as if she doesn't want to , then she'll complain that he life is boring?

This isn't an easy job.
I guess we just have to do the best we can and take things day by day.

Hang in there.

by: Anonymous

I think you perhaps feel "beholden" because you've been told you were taken in and though that may be correct, you also need to be credited for why you're doing this and that isn't happening so the belittlement of you continues.

At 89, I am sure there are things you help with (just cleaning up her mess) and handle things she can't, so you are providing a service she would need to pay for.

You count for something and it sounds like you aren't allowing yourself to feel that in this situation. With her age, she will never improve and matters will likely on escalate with health and aging so more burdens will fall on you.

Right now, you both need each other. You sound resentful because you have to be there (because of your situation) so don't direct that anger at her simply because she is being herself.

You don't know anyone really until they live with you or vice/versa. You are missing independence and that is only natural, but it isn't her fault you had to give it up. Really think about this and see if this is perhaps what is going on.

My mom has lived with me for a year. I understand disgusting. She burps and farts while we eat, spits up phlegm, etc. Makes me want to puke. All I can say is that it is what it is because there's nothing I can do about it. It's hard.

It kind of sounds like you're still falling into the little girl role and that's easy to do when you're around your parents again.

My suggestion would be to allow yourself to grow up and be an adult around her and begin standing up for yourself. If you don't want to participate in her activities, tell her that you need some time alone but she can go and you'll take her (she shouldn't be driving) and if she pouts, she pouts. She will get over it.

My mom pouts all the time, but it's forgotten eventually. Don't be afraid to be the adult woman you are.

If you're providing a service for her she would have to pay for then perhaps the money situation needs to be looked at again to give you a break. Don't be afraid to do that, either. Stand up for yourself or you're going to go crazy.

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