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When they want support you don't want to give

(10 Posts)
Licketysplits Sat 01-Apr-17 14:25:54

Not sure if this is quite the right place as my mum isn't elderly as such, but hoping for some advice!

She is 70, in good health, well off financially and can drive. Widowed a few years ago and moved 200 miles away to live near DB. She did want to move near me, but when I made it clear that we wouldn't be in and out of each others houses every day, that DH and I have busy lives and of course we would visit but she wouldn't be entwined in our lives the way she seemed to want, she decided DB was the better option! (There is a huge back story here about our relationship, but I'd be here all day if I tried to explain).

Anyhow a few years on and I don't think she's getting quite the 'service' she wanted from DB, he works very long hours and has 50% residence of DNs, and a new girlfriend, so she doesn't see much of him other than when she babysits.

She's now saying she's worried about when she gets older as she thinks he won't 'look after' her properly and saying she's going to move near me instead so I can do it! I've been quite clear that whilst I will make sure she's ok whatever happens, that is in the end likely to mean her being in sheltered accomodation, a care home, or at home with carers. I will not be her carer under any circumstances and she seems to think that's totally unreasonable. Comments about 'putting your own mother in a home' etc etc. I have tried to say she could be 10, 15, 20 years away from losing her independence as there's nothing bloody wrong with her but she wants reassurance now that if/when it happens I will 'look after' her (main points seem to be what if can't drive, what if I'm ill, what if I can't do things for myself any more, if I'm closer you'll be able to help me more, you'll be able to pop in every day) and I'm just not willing to give her the reassurance she wants as it would be misleading. I can't make it any clearer but it's like she's just choosing not to hear me and then a few months later we have the same conversation again. I wouldn't put it past her to just move down the road and assume I will cooperate! Has anyone else dealt with something like this?

Licketysplits Sat 01-Apr-17 14:26:53

Sorry just realised that is vair long and could have done with a few more paragraphs!

Crispbutty Sat 01-Apr-17 14:31:15

I'm sure there's a backstory to this. On the face of it she sounds very lonely and wants her family around her.

In my opinion I can't imagine ever wanting to tell my mum I wasn't prepared to look after her when she got unable to care for herself or tell her that occasional visits would be her only option.

But as you say your relationship with her isn't close so it's a different situation.

Licketysplits Sat 01-Apr-17 14:46:20

Backstory is looooong! Although I'm sure she'd tell you there isn't one. In a nutshell when I was young she acted in ways, and made decisions that I can't forgive her for. And she knows it, but chooses to gloss over it as if it's all fine, to the point that if i ever mention something she did that she knows was awful, she pretends i haven't spoken, even DH has noticed it. On the surface our relationship looks fine, and to an extent is fine, she is far more loving and supportive of me as an adult than she ever was of me as a child, but it's too late to repair the damage. And now she wants back what she didn't put in in my childhood, unconditional love and support. I think she is regretful perhaps, but I'll never know as she won't talk about any of it.

fuzzyfozzy Sat 01-Apr-17 14:51:19

It does sound complicated and probably not very obvious to an outsider.
Just keep being clear, she's welcome to move closer to you but you're not signing up to a,b or c...
Possibly show her some sheltered accommodation?

thesandwich Sun 02-Apr-17 19:51:01

I get what you are saying sadly. I understand how you feel and admire you for making that clear. As you say, you will ensure her care and facilitate - but not do it all. She is perfectly capable of finding somewhere where she can live with others - apartments designed for retirees etc...

jeaux90 Mon 03-Apr-17 10:18:27

Lickety the past is what it is. Practically speaking though it doesn't matter.

If you can't or don't want to be her carer then it's fine.

I have elderly parents, they have to have carers in every day because I work full time and I'm a single mum. I have POA which is something you can do for her etc

It's fine to spell it out to her and her options of which there are many especially if she has enough money. X

scaryteacher Thu 13-Apr-17 08:49:21

I am going to have this when we move back to the UK. Mum lives about 10-15 minutes away from us, and will expect dh to spend time doing little jobs for her, and for me to drive her to hospital appointments, shopping, tip runs etc. I was back in UK for 9 months in 2014 sorting out the house post tenants, and she thrashed the arse out of my being back. However, I had been abroad since 2006, and am again til late 2019, when she will be 79. Db has also been abroad since 2014, and will be so til mid to late 2020.

I am prepared to do a certain amount for her, but not so that its becomes all encompassing. I think we'll be having discussions about that prior to returning.

Penfold007 Thu 13-Apr-17 09:13:01

Lickety it really doesn't matter if there is a backstory or not. You are not prepared to commit to caring for your M in the future and that is fine. It's okay to be realistic and honest.
I allowed myself to be guilt tripped by my parents and social services drip by drip. Ten years on the pressure gets more, my DC are rightly resentful and my H openly hostile. Stand firm and be honest.

kaitlinktm Thu 13-Apr-17 20:51:08

I don't get this really - I am nearly 62 and not at that stage yet, but really would hate the idea of my DC "looking after" me. (Do you think this is because they are both boys?)

I would rather be in some sort of sheltered or semi-sheltered accommodation which would allow me my own room, TV, ability to make a cup of tea and snacks etc but help on hand if I needed it. OK I would like visits and help with admin type stuff, but the last thing I would want would be to be seen as a chore.

Did your mother look after her own mother OP?

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