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Massive row with my parents

(12 Posts)
shortsaint Sun 21-May-17 16:56:10

My 78 yr old mum broke her hip 2 weeks ago and has been living with me for a week after being in hospital for over a week. She's with me because of mobility issues and my home is more practical for getting about. She's active but frustrated. I am also active and frustrated (I also work f/t, 2 kids, it's full on).

Anyway, I just had an almighty row, my dad included (who's still living at their house, we don't have a great relationship. He'd be incapable of looking after her and is also feeling sorry for himself because he's not being waited on hand and foot). This was a full teenage type row, the type not had for 30 odd years - I am 48 ffs. I just needed to get out and my mum was driving me potty. Her little foibles winding me up (penny-pinching, not really telling me what she wants but kind of controlling what she wants to happen) plus she was getting emotional. It was awful.

I nearly came to blows with my dad. I stormed out, and have calmed down but am back, my dad has left and I am sitting upstairs sulking, feeling trapped in my own house.

I know this is so childish but I hate it. What can I do? Kind of helps writing it down. My OH is being patient but he's off on a work trip Mon-Wed so I will be on my own (+2 kids who think
Granny is great). Arghhhhh....

erinaceus Sun 21-May-17 17:05:05

Hugs shortsaint

That sounds really difficult. Do you have a non-judgemental friend who can listen to you let of steam IRL?

It sounds as if you, your DMum and your DDad need some better communication strategies. Your DMum might find it hard to tell you what she wants clearly, especially if she is used to playing the "carer" role toward your DDad and not used to being dependent on others, even her own DD. I'm not surprised that she was getting emotional, a broken hip and a loss of previous freedoms are massive deals, but it is not okay for her to handle her frustration by taking it out on you.

I am not sure about the implications of the penny-pinching. In your home, it's your budget. Is she trying to control your decision making when it comes to finances?

If you feel trapped in your own house, and Granny is great according to the DC, are you able to leave the three of them together and go for a walk to clear your head? This might not work, depends the ages of the DC and how poorly Granny is and so on.


picklemepopcorn Sun 21-May-17 19:24:49

What sparked it? I have huge sympathy with you and your mum, who are both having to manage in difficult situations. Less for your dad, really.

What would it take for you to feel better? Do you need him to help with something? To only come at specific times, like lunch time when you are at work?

shortsaint Sun 21-May-17 21:29:04

Thanks, messages appreciated. I feel guilty really. I shouldn't have lost my rag. I am not a natural nurse. And my mum is not your generous-spirited mum mum. I thank her for making me independent. We rub along fine at a distance but this is just too much. This is probably a sign of times to come & it gets me really really down. Probably all of us think that, my dad included. We just can't admit it.

Oh, the row was over a sandwich. You have to laugh!

picklemepopcorn Sun 21-May-17 21:33:10

I've got a mum like that. I feel your pain...

Viserion Sun 21-May-17 21:38:30

I feel your pain. My MIL fell and broke her hip while staying with us to give her a break from her DH, who has dementia. They were here for 3 months because he couldn't look after her, nor her him​, with me juggling a full time job and 2 kids. FIL couldn't be left alone for more than about 30 minutes, she had to be taken to physio etc. It tried my patience beyond all natural limits.

mummymummums Sun 21-May-17 21:42:49

I'm not really sure what your Mum's done wrong as it sounds like she just is a certain way, which isn't going to change at 78. I expect she's feeling quite frightened at the loss of her independence and what's to come.
Sounds like the close proximity is the issue.
I look after both my very unwell elderly parents, and my Dad is easy and now lives in full-time care due to nursing needs, but my mum can be hard work. I end up biting my tongue because I always think 'what if this is the last time we speak??' which is far from unrealistic. So I rage internally.
Not easy all round.

RedBugMug Sun 21-May-17 21:46:05

why can't she not stay at home.
is your dad too frail to care for her or just an arse?

shortsaint Sun 21-May-17 21:54:59

My dad is an arse, he's been a bully in the past but is getting more frail (83). Their house has a really steep staircase and at mine she can stay on one floor.

Oh, the other thing that was winding me up. My mum always goes halves. I hate it. Like if we go for a coffee, she will give me her share. It's never - 'oh let me treat you' or 'you paid last time, let me get this'. It's just the way she is. So, I have spent quite a lot over the last 2 weeks, new bed for her, bedding, some nighties, toiletries etc etc. She wants me to write it all down. I'm happy to just say, oh it's about £x, give it me when you're better, but she wants EVERY amount noted, and, on one item, implied I was overcharging her! I joked that I would charge her a nightly b&b charge. She didn't see the humour...

Problem is I have a 15 yr DS - he is very similar (ha! They even share a birthday). I am in a teen/mother sandwich!

mummymummums Sun 21-May-17 22:20:59

That's not good - shame she's being so tight when you're doing so much for her! Hope she's paying a share of bills!
My mum might be hard work at times but she's acutely aware of the strain I'm under with both her and my dad, with work and young children, and she regularly offers money to treat us to meals. I never doubt for a moment that she's very grateful for what I do. That seems to be a bit lacking in your case (not the ££££, I mean the simple recognition). Good luck!

shinynewusername Sun 21-May-17 22:28:28

I feel your pain, having nursed both parents in the past- and they both fought me tooth & nail grin

You need space to maintain your sanity. Can you leave the kids with her each evening and go out for an hour? Also, don't be afraid to set clear boundaries e.g. asking her not to come into the kitchen just when the breakfast rush is on. She'll probably be a bit huffy at first but, in the long run, it will avoid a big blow-up.

erinaceus Sun 21-May-17 22:55:12

The penny-pinching might come from controlling behaviour of your Dad? I am speculating. Money is such an emotive issue. If your DS is the same you could delegate keeping track of Granny-related spends to him? The comment about her paying B&B is not really a joke. If she is going to live with you long term it will affect the household finances. You may need to have a calm adult conversation about this if you can.

If she insists on going halves, well, at least you know where you stand?

Does the set up have and end date it sight, or is it open-ended or contingent on her medical status?

I agree with pp re setting boundaries and blocking out some space for yourself each day.

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