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help with mum

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Over 50s Money Saving
64 replies 4.3K views
kazzykazzy Forumite
787 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Over 50s Money Saving
my mum is nearly 71 and over the last couple of years has changed and seems to be depressed that she is getting old.Now this is understandable and I will probably be the same.The thing is I just don't know how to make her feel happier about things.She is always moaning about everything and she used to be good fun.I am one of 3 sisters .I am the only one who regularly visits and (every day on the phone or see her 4/5 times a week).I feel cross my sisters don't do more but they won't change.I feel like moving away but i won't.My mum is fine when she goes on holiday (she goes on cruises regularly iether with her friend or on her own) and is great on the first day back .Then she changes into a different person.Any suggestions please on how I can approach her or help her(she's driving me round the bend!).I went round today with good intentions to talk about it but within minutes she was moaning and i thought 'why do i bother' and stayed for a cuppa and shot off!.
Any suggestions gratefully received!!
I want money..........that's what I want !!:j
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Replies

  • mandycmandyc Forumite
    160 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    My own mother got like that when she was no longer able to go out which was understandable but she was very aware that if she moaned all the time it would put people off visiting.

    I am an only child so had no-one to share the burden (and it was a burden at times) but it must be sooo annoying that you end up dealing with all the moans.

    You mother is obviously fit and active. Does she belong to any local social groups. If she goes on cruises she must be sociable. What about day trips out on coaches etc.
  • kazzykazzy Forumite
    787 Posts
    Yes ,she does do a lot-voluntary work in hosp and theatre.Just doesn't seem to get a lot of visitors dropping in to keep her company.She has osteoporosis now which is painful.I just hear all the moaning cos i'm the nearest to her.My husband and I do everyhthing.We have had her here at Christmas for the past 12 years.She doesn't phone up and invite us for tea or anything anymore('I don't do that now i'm old'!!)Sorry...just feel like screaming!!00000054.gif
    I want money..........that's what I want !!:j
  • clairebclaireb Forumite
    142 Posts
    Constant pain from her osteoporosis will make her grouchy and depressed. Maybe she could get a referral from her GP to a pain management clinic, to help her cope with her condition better?
  • mandycmandyc Forumite
    160 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    I think you are right. You will get all the moaning because she knows you will not abandon her.

    Do you sisters live near by? Do they know how she is acting now?
  • margaretclaremargaretclare Forumite
    10.8K Posts
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    Hi kazzy

    I am the same age as your mum - will be 71 in August. and I don't expect visitors dropping in 'to keep me company'. You said your mum goes out, does voluntary work etc - this is great for making her feel useful and valued, and also keeping in contact with other people of all ages. You said she says 'I don't do that now I'm old!' Well, I'm the same age and I don't consider that I'm 'old'. I've still got a lotta living to do.

    About Christmas - why not suggest that she goes away for it this year? It's what we're going to do - a 5-night cruise up the Rhine, here it is: http://www.travelscope.co.uk/Christmas_Cruise.html

    Last Christmas I was only just out of hospital and still on crutches. We invited a friend of DH's from the silver surfers because we felt sorry for her. We invited her for Christmas meal and then discovered that she 'didn't want to go back to an empty house' so she stayed until the evening. She also 'didn't like driving in the dark' and I began to worry that she was going to stay the night!! I think she only went because she didn't like our choice of TV-watching. Never again!! I've told DH we'll go away every Christmas.

    Re osteoporosis, has she been in touch with the National Osteoporosis Society? - https://www.nos.org.uk. There is treatment nowadays, and it's important to keep active, weight-bearing exercise like walking is of great importance. I agree it's painful, but there are painkillers.

    There's a lot to live for - look out of the window of a morning, see the birds all feeding the babies that have just hatched, give thanks for every day that dawns!

    Best wishes

    Margaret Clare
    [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]Æ[/FONT]r ic wisdom funde, [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]æ[/FONT]r wear[FONT=Times New Roman, serif]ð[/FONT] ic eald.
    Before I found wisdom, I became old.
  • flossy_splodgeflossy_splodge Forumite
    2.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker Photogenic
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    :o:o Hey kazzy, you have my deepest sympathy.x I have an elderly father who I give so much time and support to but my 2 brothers do nothing but are always the ones 'talked up'. It is very difficult I know but I found out last night that my 2 brothers are executors for my father and have had discussions with him and 'put their mark' on certain things in dad's house they 'want' and have I been included in these discussions in any way? Three guesses. Anyway I have now decided that I will have a direct conversation with my father and tell him that I am not the drudge to be moaned at and if I am to be treated as a second class person because I am the female then I am sorry but I withdraw from the equation. I am already suffering from high blood pressure with worrying about him , I am virtually running his life for him( bills savings, services etc) and am simply not prepared to be on the receiving end of his *** any more. I feel that if we accept it we get it! So maybe a direct, open and CALM conversation explaining how YOU feel would be advisable and might even help. You're getting dumped on and that's not fair. Also did you know your local Social services have specialists that will come round and do an assessment of your parent AND your needs and if they can help, they will. Might be worth looking into? It surprised me what was out there for the asking. Very best of luck but please don't be a doormat, people dont respect them they just wipe their feet on them! Chin up.:confused:
    ;)
    "Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”
    ― John Wooden
  • margaretclaremargaretclare Forumite
    10.8K Posts
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    Hi flossy_splodge

    I agree with you so, so much. Looking at it from the perspective of the same generation as kazzy's mum and your Dad (how old is he, BTW?) I would be absolutely mortified if I thought that any of the family were coming around putting marks on whatever they want in the house.

    DH and I think we've tied things up pretty well. We decided against having any family member as an executor, we realise that the solicitors charge for their services but making our solicitors the executors was, we felt, the only fair and hassle-proof way. DH has a son and a daughter, I have a surviving daughter. Obviously I'd like any personal things of mine, things that came down my side, to stay in my side of the family. We've also left detailed instructions for our funeral(s), this is to prevent bro-in-law getting involved and causing trouble because DH has changed his religion and bro-in-law says he can't, it's impossible, he'll die as what he was born as.

    No, you are not a drudge. Be assertive! I have a good friend who was being given this kind of cr*p from her in-laws from whom she's suffered for nearly 40 years, age has made no difference, they've always been like that. She says now that she has learned a lot from me. You could almost see the light-bulb go 'pop' in her head the first time it dawned on her, in our conversation, that she DID NOT have to go running every time MIL wanted this, that or t'other.

    It sounds as if you are the victim of sexist attitudes which still prevail in some parents - boys get everything while girls do all the work. Stand up to it! Stop worrying about your Dad, withdraw from the equation as you said.

    Re bills, savings etc. We don't worry about things like that. Pensions and annuities are paid straight into our bank accounts and all household expenses go out by monthly direct debit, no hassle, no worries. We don't even have to think about it, and I would be mortified if I thought anyone had to come around to pay our bills etc. Nowadays there is no need at all for anyone to have to run around drawing out cash and paying bills over the counter as used to be the case. Couldn't be simpler!

    Good luck to you

    Margaret Clare
    [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]Æ[/FONT]r ic wisdom funde, [FONT=Times New Roman, serif]æ[/FONT]r wear[FONT=Times New Roman, serif]ð[/FONT] ic eald.
    Before I found wisdom, I became old.
  • kazzykazzy Forumite
    787 Posts
    :o:o Anyway I have now decided that I will have a direct conversation with my father and tell him that I am not the drudge to be moaned at
    drudge to be moaned at!!!Couldn't have put it better myself.
    I have spoken to both sisters ,who,have both sent mum an email!! To be fair one always emails but never phones and lives about 100 miles away.The other one used to live round the corner but never had anything to do with mum really(goes back to childhood and Mum was an alcoholic).I never forget those days but have forgiven whereas my sister cannot forgive.She says she really doesn't know what to say to her.
    I think i will try and speak to mum in a calm way (i'm scared to argue with her!!).Meanwhile my sister's advice is to not go round there or phone and wait til she phones me or comes round and asks what the matter is and then tell her i am sick of being a 'drudge to be moaned at'!
    Of course I understand everyone needs a good moan now and again .It's just all the time and only me and it gets tiring.
    Thanks for all of you taking time to read and reply to me.
    I want money..........that's what I want !!:j
  • Kazzy you've just cheered me up. I've just spent an hour listening to my stepdad moaning about everything and anything and it's nice to know the gods haven't singled out just me for this particular trial. He does it because he has no-one else to moan to, which sounds like the situation you're in.

    She may be depressed, but perhaps not as she's able to go away and enjoy holidays and still does a significant amount of voluntary work.

    One way of dealing with it might be to latch on to her first moan and suggest solutions to put right what she's having a moan about and stick with it until she reaches a decision on what she's going to do to , then when she brings it up again point out it was discussed and decisions made to fix it. Do this every time, until she gets the message - bit like dog training really.

    I wonder if despite her getting out and about, she's actually bored? She certainly doesn't seem very happy.

    Another way of dealing with it is not to reinforce her moaning behaviour. Do this by ignoring it, changing the topic , or if she won't play ball cut the visit short asap. If she queries this tell her why you're doing it - the conversation is not interesting.

    One thing that might help is not paying attention to what she's moaning about, but how she feels about it and what she would like to happen. Mind you if she's moaning about the weather this one won't work !

    As Margaret has pointed out, she's not old (not much older than me either, and I'm still having it large when the opportunity presents) and still has a lot of years left. Is it worth remembering all the toddler and kiddie chatter she had to listen to and which wasn't necessarily that interesting when you and your sisters were small. You know your own mum best and how she reacts to you and what you say. I've found it very useful to burst into tears when pa gets too much, it really brings him back to earth and makes him remember understand I have feelings too.
    And finally - get on the phone to your sisters and tell them to read mum the riot act.
    Chin up - keep posting if it helps to get it off your chest.
    Parents, eh - who'd have 'em. HTH
  • flossy_splodgeflossy_splodge Forumite
    2.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker Photogenic
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    Hey margaretclare, thanks so much for your response. I so understand how kazzy feels and its truly heartening to get a sympathetic hearing. :o The problem I have is my father, (who's 85 BTW) is now beginning with vascular dementia although he is in total denial! He is negative about just about every single thing in the world including direct debits, standing orders, banks, bills, oh I could so go on!! (won't tho' in case I sound like him!!). I went round past his house today to see if all looked ok (couldn't yet face going in to see him after the 'will' thing, still upset over that) and his car wasn't there but he had left all his front upstairs windows wide open. I couldn't just drive on by so I stopped, went in intending to go upstairs and shut them and guess what? Yep, he arrived back. I just had to leave. I explained what I had intended to do and he just said"oh yes I often forget to close them"! Aaargh! When I said I was leaving again as I had stuff to do I got an instant guilt trip! Know I must deal with this but am afraid of what I will say to him and that I will undoubtedly end up the loser as he does not appear to have any emotions at all. I can cry in front of him and he looks at me as if I were a fascinating specimen he is studying! Honest! Anyone know of a good home in outer Mongolia!! Perhaps kazzy and I ought to get together and swap horror stories? Oh I know - or write a book! It would read as too far fetched! Hey hum.
    ;)
    "Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”
    ― John Wooden
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