Elderly frail mother who is so demanding but refuses help

I am knew to the forum,
I have read a few posts from people who are in the same situation.
My elderly mother has always been a difficult and demanding woman. She suffers with depression and anxiety as well as other health issues.
The last few years have been really difficult. She has refused help of carers even though she needs them. Myself and my brother do not live locally to her infact I live 7000 miles away but travel every 8 weeks to see her. She insists i call every day,which I normally dread as she is doom and gloom doesn’t ask anything about me, just complains about everything and everybody.I try to do my best in the situation.
She has good friends who visit weekly but always complains she is all alone.When I do visit she doesn’t want my company she just wants to order ne around. I get a huge amount of emotional blackmail, she says nasty things at times which I have started to call her out on.
She fell a couple of weeks ago and ended up in hospital, now I am stuck looking after her 2 small and irritating dogs.
There is simply no gratitude at all, I am away from my family and husband which she doesn’t care about at all.
I am stuck in her house which I hate, she seems to have lost the ability to say please and thank you.
I set the house up with stair lifts, lifeline which she hasn’t used hence the fall on the stairs.
I feel sad that her mobility has declined but she hardly eats anything even though I order her nice food and leave meals in the freezer therefore weightloss and frailty. This I believe is a mental issue but once again refused to get help.
She is extremely self centred, and at times not a nice woman. I know she slags me off to people and that really hurts.
I feel completely lost in the situation, I want to just walk away right now as it’s become unbearable. I am worried it will ruin my marriage.
Reading other people’s experiences helps though.

Hello and welcome!

Have you requested a needs assessment or not? Call your local council today to ask for a social worker to come do a assessment of need with you. They should also carry out a financial assessment at the same time as well to figure out how you will pay for her care. You need to be there for your husband and try to repair your marriage.

Can you afford a counselor or therapist? This is a good idea if you are serious about salvaging your relationship. Tell her “I’m afraid the only other practical option is a care home” and watch her reaction carefully. Who owns the property?


Mum’s situation is very sad indeed, but it is of her own making, and now she’s got you just where she wants you!!

It’s not clear if she is back home, or still in hospital?
How old is she?

You MUST get away as soon as possible, for the sake of your marriage and your sanity. Make it clear to mum that you are going back home at the end of next week.

It is NOT up to her to choose you rather than have care, because you have your own life to lead.
Her choice is to have carers in, or to move into residential care.
Whatever she says, turn it back on her. SHE made her own life the way it is, and it’s time for her to take the consequences.

Don’t ruin your marriage and your life trying to please her or to get a thank you. It will never happen.

I know what it is like to have a mum who is impossible to please and make happy.
My own mum has died now, but try as I may I can never remember mum laughing out loud with joy and happiness.
She wasn’t nasty or vindictive, but clearly had psychological problems. Now, too late, I wonder why I never realised just how bad they were.

As for the phone, put your answering service on and leave it on. Believe me, it really works.
Make sure she has a Lifeline pendant (from the council, very cheap) so that she can summon help 24/7 in case of a fall.