another bad daughter

normal another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - Children.1 .2 .3 .4 .5 .6 .7 .8 |

Just popping in
Joined:
2006/9/13
Posts: 1
Hi
I am in desparate need of support. We had to relocate my 91 year old mother to live with us due to the death of her spouse. We are as different as night and day. She is tiny and petite, loves beatiful material things and is super critical. Nothing I have ever done has been good enough or right. My husband is 70 and I will be 65. I don't know if I can continue to live with the constant criticism. We have her seeing a geriatric doctor and he advised that I give her as much latitude as possible but her mother lived to 100 years 4 months and 7 days and I don't know how I will be able to handle ten years of this. I should also state that I am border line severe with sleep apnea and have restless leg sydrome all accompanied from time to time with low oxy levels. I also almost single handedly raised a border line severe ADHD son. My husband is an over the road driver. Mom thinks are hugging and kissing each other when he comes is abnormal and that our obsession with each other is not good. What on earth am I to do?
Diane


Posted on 2006/9/13 20:24




normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Quite a regular
Joined:
2002/12/10
From: Rowlett
Posts: 56
Dear Diane:
I'm sure that you have already considered and discussed the option of your mother moving to a retirement community or, depending upon her needs, an assisted living center . . . this way, she can live near you but not WITH you. Also, are there no other family members with whom she can live for a time? Maybe, she can live some time with one family member and other months with you . . . or, if all else fails and you really have no other option than she living with you - can you and your husband get away every once in a while for a weekend or something, so that you can cope a little better?
A really wise person once told me that I had to understand that I would NEVER be able to make another family member happy - that no matter what I did or said, I could not make her happy. Period. So, once I understood that, it really did take some of the pressure off of me and my expectations about our relationship. If your mother is going to be living with you for some time, I'd consider doing all you can to protect your boundaries and well-being, knowing that you are the only one that can do that!! Try to not take everything that she says personally; go for long walks; find support from other people; take reallllly long walks:); and do whatever you can to take care of yourself in the process.
I'm sure that other readers can offer even better thoughts about ways of coping because we've ALL encountered somewhat similar situations like this with other people, one way or another. Please let us know if we can offer any more suggestions regarding my options above . . . believe me when I say, I am sorry for your current struggles and past ones - it sounds as though you have gone through quite a lot in your life. Please take care . . . Barb


Posted on 2006/9/14 8:39




PamP 

normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Just popping in
Joined:
2006/10/28
Posts: 1
Diane,

I sympathize with your situation. I found your post by searching for "bad daughter". I, too, feel like a bad daughter. What I would like to know is WHY you feel like a bad daughter?

Do you feel like you SHOULD take care of her? Who told you that it was your job to take care of her? Do you feel guilty if you don't take care of her?

I personally think it is the SHOULDs in our lives that cause us stress.

Another reply to your post (Barb) said the following:
Quote:
A really wise person once told me that I had to understand that I would NEVER be able to make another family member happy - that no matter what I did or said, I could not make her happy. Period. So, once I understood that, it really did take some of the pressure off of me and my expectations about our relationship.


I found that bit helpful. The SHOULD in my expectation in my relationship with others is that it is my responsibility to make them happy. I become angry when I cannot fulfill this expectation. I also ASSUME many things about what others expect from me (I didn't even ask).

So Diane, what would happen if you asked your mother to live in an elder care facility? Mine has already told me, she would never live in a nursing home!

BTW, I am only 45, an only child. My mother is Deaf (all her life), legally-blind, and a stubborn independant individual. Communication with her can be difficult (mostly because she is stubborn)!

Right now, I wish she would pass away. I have been her "parent" since I was 11 or 12. I absolutely hate the fact that I'm the ONLY one who communicates with her. I avoid her like the plaque. I feel guilty because she is not happy. I feel guilty because this is not how a mother/daughter relationship should be. Note the 'should'.

It seems to me that some mothers still try to control their adult children. They manipulate, twist things and even lie when you confront them on this. Why SHOULD we put up with this? Because we feel sorry for them? Who said we had to love our parents?

On the other hand, some of her problems aren't her own fault and there is no one else to help her.

I'm so sorry Diane, it is difficult to take care of an aging parent. I hope that someone else can post and help both of us. 'Cause I'm not coping at all right now.

Pam


Posted on 2006/10/28 18:38




normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Webmaster
Joined:
2003/4/26
From: Dallas
Posts: 262
These posts reflect the despair and anger that attend the difficulties of caring for someone with a "caustic personality." I imagine that it is much like living on a planet with two magnetic poles and having one's compass always twirling round and round, never being able to settle on one pole or the other. These kinds of poles, anger and sadness, expectation and internal need, the need for our own life versus the need to care for our own, often wreak havoc on our well-being, especially when we are caring for our family and they are so demanding. I think that both of you have captured the dilemma of such circumstances perfectly. There is no good or safe place. Even when our loved one is an ideal person, it is difficult to feel satisfied with the care we give. It is only made worse in these circumstances.

Is there advice we can give? I'm not sure we're in a place where we can give advice... Whatever we say might be intellectually accurate (taking care of yourself, watching boundaries, etc), but probably feel empty to those who are going through such painful experiences. What we can say, as Barb already said, is to let you know that you're not going crazy, that your experience is normal for the circumstances as you describe them, and that you are blessed for carrying such a heavy load and trying to do the right thing by your family. No one is in any place to judge you, least of all those you are caring for. It is hard not to hear the voice of judgement from our family. I hope - we hope - that you hear our affirmation of your care and your attempts to be there. Please know that whatever gifts you give to your loved one are a choice - you can and could abandon them (not saying you should - but just an acknowledgement that people do - by choice - abandon their loved ones all the time for no reason at all).

But, you choose to be there. I hope you will affirm the choice you make to care for them each and every day. You could decide NOT to make that choice on any given day. Perhaps availing yourselves of that right, just as a reminder, would be a helpful thing to them and to you - to them as a "teaching aide" - and to you as an opportunity to care for yourselves.

Well, I have to get to work. Take care and continue to share your thoughts, positive or negative, on this subject. What helps to hear and what doesn't.


Posted on 2006/10/30 9:46


_________________
<strong><span style="font-size:medium;"><span style="color:#990000;">For every human problem, there is a neat, simple solution; and it is always wrong.<br /><br />--H.L. Mencken</span></span></strong> <img src="http://www.elderhope.com/uploads/smil3db...


Guests 

normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Bad Daughter Guilt:


Enclosed is a copy of the will that your law firm drew up for your client ____________.


Please advise your client immediately that I decline to serve as Trustee for this estate.  Due to my stepmother's difficult personality and the combative nature between my stepmother and her own family members as well as our family members, I would suggest that an "outside of the family" Accountant or Trustee be appointed and given Power of Attorney to take care of this matter.  Though I care about my stepmother and am willing to help out, I do not want to be placed in a position where I can be sued if I happen to make an honest mistake.  With the volatile nature of my stepmother and the various family members involved, I can readily see that happening.  I am sorry to disappoint my Dad, but this is what I honestly feel would be in my stepmother's best interests as well as my personal family's best interests.  In addition, I must state that I do not feel that my stepmother should be left alone in the house should my father die, and that Social Workers and/or other professionals should evaluate her competency from time-to-time to determine her living status.  Some days, she is okay, but other days, she has no concept of time, etc.  My father is a Diabetic with heart problems, prostate cancer, and bladder cancer.  He is not well at this point; therefore, this matter needs to be taken care of immediately.


Sincerely,


Bad Daughter


 


 



Posted on 2006/12/6 22:20




normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Webmaster
Joined:
2003/4/26
From: Dallas
Posts: 262
HI, Bride:



I cannot imagine how hard this must have been to write.I think it is a perfect example, though, of setting appropriate. It states flatly the reasoning that has informed your decision, the wish for good for all those concerned, it has no vitriole common to letters of this kind, and it leaves no doubt as to what the boundary is expected to be. Still, this must have been a very difficult place to have come to and a painful letter to write. I think, though, that you have done well to draw these lines, for yourself and for your family. Lines like this are important and essential for survival in caustic families. Please be gentle to yourself in having made this decision.


Posted on 2006/12/7 7:15


_________________
<strong><span style="font-size:medium;"><span style="color:#990000;">For every human problem, there is a neat, simple solution; and it is always wrong.<br /><br />--H.L. Mencken</span></span></strong> <img src="http://www.elderhope.com/uploads/smil3db...


normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Just popping in
Joined:
2006/12/11
Posts: 1

I'm one of three "bad daughters" watching my 87 year old mother starve herself to death. She lost a child 40 years ago and - not surprizingly - has been depressed ever since. She refuses to help herself, and for the last 26 years has talked about having nothing to live for. (four children, 7 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren don't count in her mind). Two years ago she had a similar health crisis - also at holiday time - and my sister and I flew out, met with her, offered all kids of support and after a week, finally conceded that if she doesn't want to live anymore, it's her right to choose. So for the last 2 years she's eaten barely enough to keep herself alive.



Now she's down to 72 pounds, left the hospital against medical advice, and I just wish she'd get it over with..................                 



Are we really bad daughters? We've spent our lives trying to make her feel loved - to no avail. I thought after 6 years of therapy I had a good handle on it, but now that her death is more imminent, I'm a mess. It's hard to accept that she'd rather be dead than be with me or anyone else in the family.  I keep looking for the lessons to be learned.  How do we avoid doing this to our children?   I agree absolutely that we can't be resposible for how someone else thinks... we can love them and care for them but in the end, we each make our own decisions. She cared for us when we were helpless children, and it feels like we should reciprocate - but it IS different.  Adults make choices - to be hostile, beligerent, hurtful, etc. or to compromise.  Just as I'd extract myself from an abusive marriage, I think we should be able to extract ourselves from abusive parents without feeling all this guilt? 



Posted on 2006/12/11 14:42




normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Webmaster
Joined:
2003/4/26
From: Dallas
Posts: 262
Clearly, this topic touches a very deep nerve. Of the posts we have had in these forums for the past several years, this perhaps has received the most response, as well as the emotional response.



It's sad that so many folks have this experience: trying to care for a loved one who rejects their efforts, and does so angrily. Eric Berne spoke about having tapes that we play over and over in our heads. Those tapes project voices that we may have heard in our past and contaminate our ability to think in a more adult fashion - they prevent us from processing our experiences in a more helpful and constructive way. It's not easy to deprogram these tapes. Transactional analysis has a whole system developed to help with understanding and helping with this behavior. We all struggle with it to some extent.



My invitation, in the short space I have at this moment is to encourage some homework: 1) Try to identify the tapes you have that you keep playing over and over; 2) When you identify that a tape is playing, consciously stop, reflect upon the fact that you are playing the tape; 3) Choose to stop the tape!; 4) Choose to play a different tape ("I try to help people as much as I can. I give them the freedom to accept my help or to go in another direction. Whatever they choose is their choice, not mine. In any case, I know I love them and have given them the opportunity to receive my care. I can only do what they let me do."



In any case, when you allow that tape to play, you become a victim of the tape that was, somehow, implanted in you - the tape that says, "You're a bad daughter." I am not a particular advocate of any school of psychology. In this case, though, Berne's words may be appropriate and may offer a way to help make sense of the struggles expressed in this thread. The fact that the thread is titled as it is serves as an interesting demonstration that such a tape is playing. For more on TA and Eric Berne, go to the following link:  www.itaa-net.org/ta/CoreConcepts/CoreConcepts.htm


Posted on 2006/12/14 9:46


_________________
<strong><span style="font-size:medium;"><span style="color:#990000;">For every human problem, there is a neat, simple solution; and it is always wrong.<br /><br />--H.L. Mencken</span></span></strong> <img src="http://www.elderhope.com/uploads/smil3db...


normal Re: another bad daughter


Just popping in
Joined:
2006/12/16
Posts: 2
Foud this website today after another round with my Mother -she is 91 - lives in a retirement home near me -was moved here two year ago after it was decided by her doctor it was risky leaving her so far away from any family -she has been angry ever since -her house just sold and that doesn't help -anyway I am the only daughter aand a nurse like my Mother -I was always doing things to please her so I guess my situation is from a lifetime of conditioning -I have 2 brothers who live a piece away and have no intention of visiting her -they just fight with her as well - I visit her every day -she EXPECTS it - she can't see that her dependence on a wheeled walker,inability to do stairs,hearing loss,etc make her next to impossible to take anywhere - Christmas is bad as I will have my 2 boys with us for the day and I told her we will come and visit her so she decided well she will just book a dinner somewhere in town - she is angry she can't come and I feel guilty thinking about the short time I will have with my kids who live 2 hours away - every holiday brings the same issues -I can see how she has lost many things and I do as much as I can- she keeps me running with shopping,etc - reminds me all the time of things wrong at her retirement home -she refuses to eat in the dining room so gets her meals in her room therefore isolating herself more - I see other people also have issues - just seems when you are 60 years old this should be behind me!!! Thanks for listening -


Posted on 2006/12/16 15:16




normal Re: another bad daughter

Previous post - Next post | Parent - No child |

Webmaster
Joined:
2003/4/26
From: Dallas
Posts: 262
You're welcome...

That's what we're here for.

One other thought that may be of some help, which I haven't yet mentioned is that of journaling - basically as you have done here only over a longer period of time. Over the twelve years I worked in hospice care, the single most healing thing that bereaved folks did that helped the grief process was journaling. For some reason, the writing down of our thought processes, and then later reviewing those processes, or seeing where we've written the same thing for so long, etc. tends to help us 1) make sense of our experience, 2) get past the events of our experience and get to the heart of what we are thinking and where we need to go with it, and 3) to jog us to make changes where need be.

I remember when I was going through a rough personal time, I had written notes from therapy I had had some years before. When I returned to those notes five years later and realized that I was rationalizing in exactly the same way as I was five years previous, it gave me the push to set in motion permanent changes: "No way I want to be in the same place after another five years. I want to live." I made some difficult and very painful choices, but I'm glad I did. I'm not saying you need to make such choices. Only that journaling can give a different perspective than we might otherwise have.

I hope this helps in some way. Take care...


Posted on 2006/12/23 0:24


_________________
<strong><span style="font-size:medium;"><span style="color:#990000;">For every human problem, there is a neat, simple solution; and it is always wrong.<br /><br />--H.L. Mencken</span></span></strong> <img src="http://www.elderhope.com/uploads/smil3db...


Post into this topic

Subject
guestname   :
Body
url email imgsrc image code quote
SAMPLE
alignleft aligncenter alignright bold italic underline linethrough   

 [more...]

  Advanced search