At Wits end

I work 30 hr’s a week, look after my Grandchildren once a week over night and as I live alone try to do overtime when ever I can.
I look after my elderly mother once a week over night.
My mother has become increasingly abusive to me when i am there, to the point I just sit in silence as everything I say she jumps on and starts arguing with me.
She presses my buttons and I start arguing back.
Last time she phoned my brother to throw me out the house and told me to effing get out and not come back and to shut my fat mouth.,
She makes many comments about my weight and how my skinny sister is so healthy.
My brother and sister also stay there, neither work, neither have Grandkids.
My brother and sister said she is never abusive to them, she is kind with them.
I told mum I am changing jobs and from the 22nd. I can’t come my regular day I need to change it. She also does not like me bringing my dog with me and she said I am lazy and sit on my fat arse all the time I am there… despite her never having asked me to do anything, as I would of helped without problem.
I am at the point I dread going there and my doctor has asked me not to go as it is having such a negative effect on me but my brother sister and Mum all go on and on at me to stay if I don’t go.
Mum said my sister won’t be happy about having to come a different day as she prefers the day I will need, yet I work and she doesn’t.
I told her if she doesn’t swap I won’t be able to go.
Things are awful, I thought dementia etc but now I know she is nice to the others it is as if I am the target for all her anger.

Hi Julie,
Does your Mum need overnight care or do you all visit to keep her company and help out with chores?

If it were me, I honestly think I’d say that with my new job, grandchildren etc I’m sorry but I can no longer stay over.

It sounds as if this would be better for both of you.

Arrange to drop by or to do a regular chore that fits your schedule, instead, if you want to.


I would stop doing everything, at once.
She has absolutely no right to demand your attendance, expect you to do things, or stay overnight.
You do not have to accept her verbal abuse.
Yes, I know she’s your mum but that does not give her the right to treat you like this.

Maybe it’s time for residential care?

We lost my brother 6 weeks ago, also my step dad Jan. It’s mostly company as she is pretty independent though my sister does pamper her a bit, my sister puts her to bed but it’s completely unnecessary.
I go after work and my mum is a really heavy smoker, I dislike sleeping in a Smokey environment, she refused to not smoke when I am there.
We have all been in bits since losing my brother. It’s been a sad difficult time for all of us.
I love my Mum but she won’t accept carers and demands that we provide her care. I am the bad daughter for saying we also need a life and she shouldn’t be expecting it off us. We are all happy to help but I am the only one who works. It’s stressful for me.

You really do need to stand up for yourself and your life.
I had counselling at 60, becasue I was on the verge of a breakdown.
The counsellor realised that I was still behaving like an obedient child that never said “No” to mum.
I had every RIGHT to put myself first. I also had a brain damaged son, ran a business and was recently widowed and recently disabled om a car accident. Mum was disabled, 3 carers a day and a gardener but still “saved” jobs for me!

Maybe a good counsellor could help you too?
I was encouraged to set priorities, son had to come before mum, because he couldn’t speak for himself. She could. I told mum, she didn’t like it, but had to agree it was right. If she wanted me to do things, it had to be done strictly on a “one at a time basis”. doing one at my pace, not starting anything else until it was done.

I know how devastating it is to lose a family member, I found my husband dead in bed at the age of 58, from a massive heart attack - before mum died at 87.

Your mum has to work through her grief herself, as we all do. If she needs care, she can have carers.
I spent 30 years helping mum, dad worked away from home a lot, mum didn’t drive.
Mum has NO right to demand you sleep there to keep her company!
Get your husband to tell her it isn’t going to happen any more. You should be sleeping with him, not her!

I do say No to her but then I am made to feel guilty by my brother and sister, while Mum smiles at me behind their backs like a naughty child.
I am just going to say No and see what happens.

Thanks, That does help, it’s hard when your already low dealing with Grief and trying to keep all your every day things on an even keel.

Julie, you are the one that works, brother and sister don’t.

They don’t want to be bothered, so they “guilt trip” you, as the one who cares, into doing things, to save them from doing it. They are blackmailing you. Mum is probably happy because you do a better job than they do anyhow.

Three people who are all using you to get out of them doing things.

Time for you and your husband to plan a break away. There are lots of self catering cottages etc. that are really cheap this time of year. I use Sykes Cottages most of the time, or Holiday Cottages. Go away, together, enjoy going for walks, cuddling up together in front of a woodburner, lazing in bed in the morning, and then a pub lunch.

Turn you phone off. Yes, you can. It’s time the others pulled their weight.

I told Mum today that I am not going back, I said I don’t want to argue with her it’s not good for her or me, I also don’t appreciate being called fat. told to shut my fat mouth and made to watch documentaries about obese people. She said it’s not personal… I said Mum, it very much IS personal and I am not putting up with it.
She slammed the phone down on me.

Well done.
There is a direct relationship between caring, stress, and weight. I’m heavier than I’ve ever been now.
The last thing I heard mum say about me to someone else was to a nurse in the nursing home saying “she (me) never used to be that big!”
I’d had life saving cancer surgery, been widowed, nearly killed in a car accident, but STILL expected to run round mum and disabled son. I’d been left to empty my brother’s house when he died, and mum’s hoarder house which took an entire YEAR to empty because it was rammed full of stuff she never used. All when I’d been told never to care for anyone ever again!!!

I learned too late that if you don’t stick up for yourself, no one will.
Expect your mum to have toddler tantrums now, and also spite from brother and sister.
It will take a while to realise that you are serious, they cannot intimidate you any more.
Ask your husband (who is probably delighted) to help you when they call with sob stories.
Might be worth blocking all their phone numbers for a while.