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DT
Reply with quote  #1 

Just need to vent.  My mother in law has been living with us for 6 LONG years now.  My problem is I feel so guilty for hating her soooo much.  I am a very spiritual positive person.  She is the most negative individual I have ever met in my entire life.   My husband and I took her in because no one else would have her.  We tried to include her as part of the family but now I feel she is nothing but an intruder.  She sits in her room and any time we are trying to discipline our twins daughter (age 16) she comes running out to see whats going on and then just stands there with this screwed up look on her face.  When we are gone and the girls are left with her alone she is constantly in their business, and telling them what to do.  I have confronted her many times about her actions.  In no uncertain terms about what I expect.  She does fine for a while then reverts right back to her MEAN agitated self.  My husband feel s as if his hands are tied between whats best for us and whats best for her.  She cannot afford a retirement home.  Lately she just comes into our bedroom lays across the bed and strikes up a conversation.  She just doesnt allow any of us any privacy.  We are five people living in a three bedroom home. Which means my daughters are sharing a bedroom so she can have her own.  She doesnt appreciate us or anything we do for her.  She is constantly telling other family members and our own friends when they call about how terrible she feels  we treat her.  I am at wits end!  I cant even stant to look at her.  I pray daily that God will give me the strength to handle  her just one more day....The Christian side of me tells me I am so wrong to feel this way about another human being, but my intellectual side tells me I am totally right about my feelings.  Please pray for us.  That we will not fall apart as a family because of this devilish selfish woman.

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NoName
Reply with quote  #2 

DT,

Trust me, you are not alone in your feelings.  I feel the exact same way about my MIL.  I can not stand the woman but am forced to live with her.  Others think that she is this poor pitiful frail woman that my husband and I  should be so happy to share our home with.(family members who don't lift a finger to even take her out for an afternoon to give us a break, quick to feel sorry for her though) even though we have a wonderful comfortable home for her to live in, I drive her everywhere, do her grocery shopping for her and any errands she needs done, cook the meals because she decided when she moved in with us that she doesn't like to cook so she isn't going to do it anymore.  Well, guess what, I don't want to do it either so she eats microwaved meals.  I never go into her "area" which used to be part of my home because if I do, there is always something she needs done for her, some stupid thing that she forgot to tell me etc. I stay upstairs but mind you, she has no problem with coming upstairs to "my area" any time she feels like it and intruding in my privacy.  My husband is an only child and she has no money so she can't go to a retirement home and has threatened death if we try to move her to one.  His parents lived for the moment and just expected that hubby would take care of them in their old age, which is what we are doing.  Not because we want to but because my husband is a stand up guy and is taking care of what he considers his "job".  I have been through all of the emotions that I think we all go through, feeling crappy about my feelings for her, how selfish I feel, that "dumb" look that others give you if you dare complain about having someone in your home 24/7, after all it won't last forever and she is just an old lady trying to enjoy her last years.  Well, what about our best years that are spent caring for someone that we don't want to care for?  How much "duty" does an adult child owe parents? Unless someone lives the life that we do, they just don't get it do they? 

Don't beat yourself up, just keep posting to us who really understand how you feel.  We are all living a life that we are no longer enjoying so that these selfish old people can have their last years happy. I want my life back.  I was really happy then and I am unhappy now but for my hubby's sake, I will stick it out.  You really need a strong marriage, relationship to survive the problems having older parents live with you.

 

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Laura
Reply with quote  #3 

Hi NoName and DT,

 

You guys have come to the right board!!  You will find that there are many of us here that intensely dislike (and I say that while clenching my teeth) their MIL.  Some of us unfortunately live with them and some of us just deal with them from afar.

 

My story is this:  My husband's mother was retired and living in this big 4 bedroom house alone (she and my FIL were divorced).  She then had 2 strokes that paralyzed her on her right side.  Since hubby, myself and our 2 children were living in an apt and the lease came up for renewal at the same time she had her stroke (coincidence??) and sibs lived on opposite coasts, we were voted to take care of her.

 

No rules were made up, nobody said anything about coming out to help, although by my admission, they have helped when they could.  When they do come out, we are able to get away.

 

It has been 3yrs and 4 months, but I really still don't like my MIL.  I didn't like her when we got married (she treated my 18mo old son by a former marriage like he didn't exist - until her son threatened her with no contact at all if she didn't get over it).  She butts her head into all of our situations, we have NO privacy, and she is non appreciative.  Negative also.  She sits in front of the tv and internet all day.  She had this thing when she first got home from the hospital that no one else could change her except me because it wasn't right for her son to see her like that.  That changed quickly. 

 

She has opinions about everything.  It is just so hard living with another person, let alone a parent.  It all starts with "well, the kids have their lives" and then turns into "I want to die in this house".

 

My MIL seems to think it is her house and her rules.  I tried going with that, until she got to be a dictator.  Then we made it plain as day: "You don't have enough money to live in this house unless we live in it with you and split the bills".  She has a caregiver she pays as we work, and our "rent" is taking care of her on the weekends.

 

She saves over 3500 a month.  We pay more because expenses go up living with her, instead of down.  She pays all her bills, the house bills, her grocery and car bills.  We split gas, electric, gas, water, the maid (who doesn't really do a good job, but she keeps her because she is reliable??, the gardner, and the pest control (for ants, but we have 2 dogs, so I pay half for the flea spray). 

 

And then we pay for cable so that she can watch all the channels in the world and veg out, but don't ask her for that money..

 

I wish we could move.  I really do.  Living with this woman has caused more stress in my marriage and health that I never thought I would have.  A couple of health problems have cropped up that I never had before I moved in.  I constantly think about how to act, what to say, how to say it, and I am constantly P.O'd. 

 

This was supposed to be helping us by us saving money (a opportunity of a lifetime) but the stress has caused me to be out of work, which makes it so we can't save any money. 

 

I love my husband, but sometimes I just want to leave the state and start over somewhere else.  I am worried about him too. His health isn't the greatest.

 

So keep posting.  Venting is helpful and maybe we can all come up with an idea (short of dropping them over a cliff) that will help all of us

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Jeannie
Reply with quote  #4 

When my FIL passed away last year, we took in my MIL to live with us.  What a terrible terrible mistake that was.   MIL has always been a negative person along with being manipulative  and controlling.  We believe she whined my FIL to an early grave.   You can talk to her until you are blue in the face but she will not even attempt to change.  She thinks we're all wrong and because she's elder, she's right all the time.

 

I cook and wash and she complains that she doesn't like this and that.  I've gotten to the point that I just don't care and I just go deaf when MIL starts to whine.   I'm come to the conclusion that MIL will never be happy with anything and I just gave up trying for my sanity.  This is my house and it's my way.  She's lucky that she's here, no one else in the family wanted her because of her nastiness.

 

I feel trapped and miserable in my own home.   I have no privacy and recently I've had to put a lock on my bedroom door because MIL cannot keep her nose out of it.   What's the matter with these old folks that think that they can look and touch every hing that's not theirs.

 

I am a totally different person from last year.  I find myself very unhappy and angry all the time and quick to snap.   MIL must go or I'm afraid I'm headed to an early death.   Every day is filled with the misery of my MIL.

 

We  have checked into senior housing and with the  help of the rest of the family, we can put her there.   I'm at my wit's end, I can't take it anymore and I don't care what people think of me.   You have no idea how terrible it is unless you're lived it.

 

I thank this board for keeping me sane.

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DT
Reply with quote  #5 

Thanks to all of you for listening.  Its nice to know there are real people out there that truly understand what we are experiencing.  Peace be with you all!

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Olivia
Reply with quote  #6 
Hello to those who have posted on this topic--

I am new to this board, and want to say "thanks" for your help to me and my husband, and everyone. This is only my second or third posting. (If you want to read my story, it's on the POV of univolved siblings topic).

Just wanted to add two cents, with a small idea.

Find a private hour to yourself, a space/room, the classified section of your local newspaper, and clear off a table top. Take out one clean sheet of paper, a pencil, and a calculator. Figure up your entire budget, including some or all the money needed to stick mom in a very small apartment. Figure out what you can live without in your life, in order to gain your sanity. Also write down any ideas you might have for additional income, including selling aluminum cans. There is no pride or guilt or emotions on this sheet of paper. Only ideas and plans, and the cold hard financial truth.

If you can find a balance or a plan on this little piece of paper, then who cares what anyone thinks of you? It is YOUR life, not anyone else's. You do not owe your parent your life. This exercise might help you feel less trapped, or resolve your mind that you are going to have to continue to deal with this situation.

The final number will be the cost of your sanity. It does not lie.

If you find at the end of this illuminating exercise, that you must continue to deal with this situation, then I gently suggest you take out one more sheet of paper.

Write down five reasonable things you can do that will help you feel more in control and more sane. Killing your MIL cannot be on this list. Take list to your spouse. Get five ideas from that person, if desired. Have pow-wow. Implement plan.

Then pray.


Olivia.



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DT
Reply with quote  #7 

Thanks Olivia.  Although we have done the financial thing.  We are still raising our 16 year old twin daughters.  You can only imagine with school, Drs., etc.  just how expensive that is.  No at this point we cant possibly support her living outside of our home.  As you said Pray.  I do that daily.  I have totally put this woman in his hands.  its all I know to do.  We have absolutely no outside help.  Except one cousin who takes her off sometimes.  She is definately our escape...thanks for writing.  Please continue. 

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Jeanne
Reply with quote  #8 

Did you say mother-in-law living with you?   Ahhhhhhhhh!!!!!      

It's been 3 years, 5 months, 16 days, 4 hours & 27 minutes. 

I went to see a priest for the first time in over 20 years recently to try to come to grips with my feelings toward her. 

I so understand what you're going through. 

You are not alone. 

You aren't a bad person. 

I, too, am stuck. 

Hang in there.

Keep posting it helps, these folks are great.

 

Jeanne

 

 

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DT
Reply with quote  #9 

Oh Jeanne you have made my day!  Just by reminding me that we are not bad people.  You know I can't think of anyone who actually knows what we are living with.  My best girlfriend is always saying well just put her in asst. living or a nursing home.  She doesnt even understand that this woman has no income, atleast not enough to cover her expenses if we were to send her off  somewhere.  Its funny how those who have the most financially, or as far as supportive family goes that seem to have all the answers for US!  My girlfriend has told me there is no way her or her husband will allow either of their parents to live with them.  Period!    Thanks for checking in and please continue.  Out of my mind in Tennessee!

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Only Daughter
Reply with quote  #10 
If mother-in-law has no assets and no income, you can apply to admit her asap to a nursing home and apply for Medicaid for her immediately.  You don't have to keep taking care of her at home and supporting her.  Medicaid is pretty easy to get for a sick senior with absolutely no assets.  I repeat you DON'T have to keep taking care of her at your own expense -- financial and mental.  You may have to put her on a waiting list at a Medicaid-approved long-term nursing facility, but pretty soon her name will come up.  Good luck!
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Laura
Reply with quote  #11 

Ah, Jeanne, my friend, and it seems the only person that understands.

 

Olivia, you have a good point about taking that sheet of paper and doing the numbers.  I think that I have come to that last one - the one where I can feel in control.  Killing MIL was at the top of the list - just kidding. She isn't worth going to prison for.

 

As Jeanne will concur, sometimes the best thing if you have reached the numbers and can't do anything - either because of the son's misplaced thoughts of having to take care of mom and putting her first above his wife (even though he doesn't think he is) or this being such a "wonderful" opportunity to save money (even though we aren't) and we will probably die of the stress first..

 

My 14 yr old daughter hates being around her and hates what it is doing to her parents.

 

I hate the fact that he caters to her even though he thinks he isn't. He thinks he is being "polite" by saying goodnight to her.  I say you can say "goodnight" and let her get herself to bed.  She can do it without help, so let her.  I do.  When he is gone, I tell her goodnight and she turns off her lights herself.  He insists on doing this for her.

 

Now, I had planned on the 3 of us going trick or treating.  She got upset because no one would give the kids candy.  She doesn't see them, so what the heck is the problem!!!  Now hubby wants to go out and get candy.  So either then I have to go out with our daughter, or I have to stay home and hand out candy to kids that don't need it!!!

 

UGHH>>>  Something small, but I think everyone can relate in some reason or another.  There is a total loss of control and it really upsets me.  I can't make any decisions etc.

 

Sorry, but sometimes I just want to throw "the mother" from the train.  Or down the stairs.. or just out!!

 

Laura

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Jeanne
Reply with quote  #12 

Speaking of killing MIL.  Hubby is away this week and he arranged for N-MIL's sister to come and stay because, get this, he doesn't want me to end up in jail.  Ha!  I think he was joking   You have to joke, it's a coping mechanism.

 

Now, her sister is here. The day before her sister arrived, she sneakily broke my ceramic Halloween witch, then put it back together so no one would notice until it was touched, and then it would fall apart.   I found it before her sister arrived. Of course, she didn't know anything about it.  Since neither hubby, son nor myself did it, I wonder if it was an evil ghost or spirit.  Duh!  Well, EVIL is correct.  I know it's minor and I don't care about the witch.  The thing that gets you is she does it on purpose, on the sneak, and then pretends she's just as upset as you are about it when you find it.  This is the kind of little stuff she does (as opposed to the big stuff which is another story).  And I should know better than to put anything nice out.  So, I put the rest of my Halloween decorations away, why chance it.  Since the broken witch didn't work, this morning I go to get in my car to go to work and the lights are on inside it, which only happens when you open the door to get in.  I closed up the garage at midnight and the car was fine.  She was the only one other than myself that was up and there's absolutely no reason for her to go in my car.    She's baiting me, hoping that I'll explode in front of her sister so she can play the innocent victim.  Freakin' nutcase   Oh, and last night when I went to bed they asked if I would leave the dog downstairs for awhile.  N-MIL knows you can't feed him people food because he  gets sick.  Well, he threw up twice during the night.  Did she allow them to feed him something?    Or, was it a coincidence?  He's fine today. 

 

Well, everyone, hang in there, stick together and post so we can stay sane.

 

Love ya,

Jeanne

 

 

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Jenna
Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DT

Oh Jeanne you have made my day!  Just by reminding me that we are not bad people.  You know I can't think of anyone who actually knows what we are living with.  My best girlfriend is always saying well just put her in asst. living or a nursing home.  She doesnt even understand that this woman has no income, atleast not enough to cover her expenses if we were to send her off  somewhere.  Its funny how those who have the most financially, or as far as supportive family goes that seem to have all the answers for US!  My girlfriend has told me there is no way her or her husband will allow either of their parents to live with them.  Period!    Thanks for checking in and please continue.  Out of my mind in Tennessee!

DT, 

Did I miss something about your MIL's health status? Does she need nursing care? If not, and she can live independently, has she checked out the local senior apartment complexes? (I assume that there are subsidized senior apartments in your area..? In Ohio there is subsidized housing all over the state. Are other states not the same?) 

 

Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio

Subsidized Senior and Disabled Apartments – Individuals who are at least 62 years old or disabled, and meet low income qualifications, are eligible for rent subsidies. Income levels are set by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), but are generally 80% of the region’s median income. Rent will be calculated as 30% to 35% of ones income, and government programs will cover the additional housing cost. 

 

My FIL lives in one of my husband's rental units, but if we didn't have that available, he would have to move into a senior apartment building of which there are several within 20 miles from our house.

 

Jenna

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Dinah
Reply with quote  #14 

Jenna,

 

  The MIL has chronic emphyzema, and polio from childhood.  She gets around very slowly due to the effects to her leg from the polio and must be on oxygen at night for the emphyzema.  I personally feel she is becoming very senile.  Her lungs are very congested as I speak.  She gets pneumonia  very easily.  We have been told by her Drs. the next time she ends up in the Hospital ICU due to Pneumonia we can have social services get her on the list for an available Nursing home.  If she should require nursing of any kind.  The last time she was hospitalized for this, she almost didn't make it out.  The biggest problem we have with her is although she is quite unhealthy, she still seems to have her negative and sometimes hateful mind. 

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Concerned
Reply with quote  #15 

HELLO YOU STRONG WOMEN WHO STICK BEHIND YOUR HUSBAND'S DECISION.  BUT I WANT YOU TO THINK FOR ONE MINUTE. WHAT IF THE TABLES WERE TURNED AROUND.  JUST THINK.......WHAT IF YOU WERE THE ELDERLY WOMAN WHO HAD TO LIVE WITH YOUR CHILDREN AND THEIR FAMILY BECAUSE YOU HAD NO PLACE TO GO.  REMEMBER.... WE ARE NOT GETTING ANY YOUNGER. WE WILL GET OLD TOO ONE DAY.  TRUST ME NO MATTER HOW MUCH YOU WORKOUT, EAT HEALTLY, AND TRY TO LOOK YOUNG. IT WILL STILL COME. 

 

IF YOU ARE THE ELDERLY WOMAN, HOW WOULD YOU FEEL ABOUT LEAVING YOUR SURROUNDS, LEAVING THE THINGS THAT ARE SO COMFORTABLE TO YOU, TO GIVE UP YOUR FREEDOM, YOUR INDEPENDENCE AND YOUR OWN HOUSE RULES.  DEEP DOWN YOU KNOW YOU ARE INTRUDING AND YOU KNOW YOU A BURDEN TO YOUR CHILDREN AND HIS FAMILY.

 

WHAT HAPPENS TO THIS WOMAN...... NOW YOU ARE MAD BECAUSE YOU CAN'T DO THE THINGS YOU USED TO DO. YOU HAVE TO DEPEND ON SOMEONE ELSE TO HELP.  LONG AGO YOU WERE THE ONE WHO TOOK CARE OF YOUR CHILDREN AND NOW YOUR CHILDREN ARE TAKING CARE OF YOU.

 

I KNOW IT IS HARD BUT FIND THE GOOD THINGS ABOUT THE MIL.  LOOK DEEP INSIDE THE INDIVIDUAL.  FIND OUT THE THINGS THEY USED TO DO.  BEFORE, THEY MOVED IN.  GET THEM INTO ACTIVITES ( WHICH WILL KEEP THEM BUSINESS. IT WILL KEEP THEM OUT OF YOUR BUSINESS AND YOUR CHILDREN BUSINESS) FIND THINGS THAT MAKE THEM HAPPY. 

 

I HOPE I HELPED.  MY MOTHER IS ELDERLY. SHE HAD A STROKE AND CAN'T DO THE THINGS SHE USED TO DO.  SHE IS SO UPSET AND LOST. I HAD TO THINK ABOUT WHAT SHE LIKED AND TRY TO HELP HER GET HER LIFE IN SOME TYPE OF ORDER. 

 

 

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