April 26, 2019, 09:59:25 am


"Welcome to WiseWomenUnite.com -- When adult children marry and leave home, life can sometimes get more complex instead of simpler.  Being a mother-in-law or daughter-in-law can be tough.  How do we extend love and support to our mothers-in-law, adult children, daughters-in-law, sons-in-law, and grandchildren without interfering?  What do we do when there are communication problems?  How can we ask for help when we need it without being a burden?  And how do our family members feel about these issues?  We invite you to join our free forum, read some posts... and when you're ready...share your challenges and wisdom."

I am being treated as ""on today" "off tomorrow"

Started by Jeannine, November 25, 2015, 01:08:09 pm

Previous topic - Next topic

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


Hi, I am new and have been reading some of the posts, hoping someone can relate to the problem I am having as I really don't know what to do... let me put you in the picture .

Three and a half years ago for many reasons I agreed to live with my daughter and son in law, they have a lovely large house and I have my own lovely 3 piece suite in the home. I gave up my own home to join them, I was hesitant at the time but there were some health problems with my husband that made it seem logical. My husband has Alzeimers and my  mobility is getting less all the time, my daughters husband is a mental health nurse, they have absolutely no money problems, the suite is lovely and one would think the situation is ideal  however.

My daughter has Bi polar disease  which she does rather use as an excuse for everything, I know  that sounds harsh but one would have to see it to know.

The situation is not what I expected, I was promised help with my husband and my own health, the reality is I  have had to put my husband into care as the help I needed was simply not there,  I was managing to cope but felt my husband needed more than I could give him alone..bathing, incontinence etc.My health started to fail quickly and finally I agreed to follow my drs advice and let him go. I had looked after him for 14 years after his diagnosis. It had gutted me as we were very very close.

My daughter goes from one extreme to the other, maybe this is her illness, but it is now affecting my health. She will willingly give anything moneywise, house renos that are not needed etc. She has replaced the kitchen in my suite because she didn't like the colour of the cabinets although they were just fine, only 6 years old...she seems to want to buy me and if i say no, she is invisible for days. then she will pop back up and she is in and out 20 times a day.. there is no stability. She loves to bring her friends in to see the lovely suite she has given her parents, always quoting the cost. Several days ago I had symptoms of what could have been a heart attack, mild but significant, I had chest pains, pain down me left arm and i was breathless, I phoned upstairs to let them know about 9.30 pm..just in case.. her husband came down , looked at me from a distance and said to phone if I got worse. I didn`t fortunately but no one checked on me till 4 pm the next day when I got a phone call from her mobile while she was out shopping, I told her I was Ok but said i was uncomfortable that no one had checked, she  seemed annoyed with me for chastising her and hung up.. that was 6 days ago and I have seen no one since. I am very concerned about the future as i am not getting any younger and feel very vulnerable.

I had lived in a seniors apartment complex before coming here, where we all supported one another, now I am isolated, sometimes go days without any contact and am getting very worried. I am in a situation that I see no exit from but.....

There is so much more I could say, many similar incidents but I think this is enough.

Is there anyone out there in a similar position that can advise what is best to do, I would be grateful as I really don`t have anyone to ask.

Thank you


Welcome, J. We ask all new members to go to our HomePage and under Open Me First to read the post put there for you. Please pay special attention to the Forum Agreement to be sure it's a fit for you. We're a monitored Forum. (This my standard welcome.)

WWU is my Website...it's six years old. I am 88. I ,too, cared for my husband until I broke. Then he was in a Nursing Facility for three years until he passed at age 101.

My take is for you to remove yourself from that abusive environment. Your life may depend on it. I live in a Senior Retirement center...in a low-income studio apartment. We came here together and had a lovely unit but I had to move to the HUD section of our campus (which is still really nice) because of the cost of nursing.

I want you to know that I am in your corner 100%. Your description of the support that living in a senior community brought you is what I have experienced every day for the last 15 years. They aren't all wonderful. The best are non-profit. We found www.warmbeach.org on the 3rd try.

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama


Welcome to the site, J. I hope you can find a new place ASAP. You need support during this time and it doesn't seem as if anything is going to change with your DD & SIL.

Keep us updated! We're your support right now, even if all we can do is listen. Best wishes.
Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb

Green Thumb

Oh, this is very hard for you, I can hear it in your voice (of your writing). I work in the field of elder care and first wanted to say that taking care of someone with Alzheimers is very very very difficult to do in the home. The care they need is usually more than a person can manage on their own. Plus, being isolated and alone in the home, like you are now, and he was then, is not good. Most older adults want to stay in their own home but reality is they are often lonely and isolated and just watch TV. Their nutrition suffers and they often have difficulty taking meds or driving. So many become a prisoner in their own homes but a good long term care facility is very expensive. A good long term care facility or an independent senior living place can be wonderful if you have the assets, you get healthier meals than you'd make on your own, transportation to stores or doctor appointments and socialization, being with other people your own age who have your same hobbies,  and who want to talk and be friendly.

Are you able to cook and clean house and bathe yourself? How about are you able to take your medications by yourself and doing it correctly without confusing one for the other. If the answer is yes, then an independent senior apartment community would get you out of your dependent state and you'd have more socialization than you have now. If the answer is no, if you need help taking your medications or showering or dressing or cooking or cleaning, then consider an assisted living. A good one will help you and give you your dignity back.

It sounds like you have no dignity living at your daughters place.  Not everyone is a giving person and from your post it sounds like your son in law and daughter are not into giving or helping you. It just is what it is and your job now is to look at this in a realistic and blunt manner so that the rest of your life is good. Do you pay them rent? Perhaps they looked at your living there as income (your rent) for their huge house. They may see this as a business relationship. While you see this as a helping relationship.

What I hear in your post is that your desire for more help and more giving by the people you live with is not being met in your current situation. You must find the courage to make a move that is better for you.


Welcome J. I echo the others.  Find somewhere where you are comfortable and safe.
We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -
Joseph Campbell


Hi Thank you all for the help and advice.

I think I may have given the wrong impression. My main problem with my health problem is my mobility. I am gradually losing the ability to stay on my feet for any length of time so everything I do is ...sit.. stand ..sit ..stand etc,but if I get anything like a chest infection which puts me off my feet entirely for the most part it is very difficult and my biggest concern is that my health problems can only worsen over the next few years and I am very worried about my situation when that approaches.

Right now the emotional  drag is hard to deal with and I have made a few decisions over the past two weeks that I feel a bit more empowered about. Usually my daughter is absent for several days then wants to be there all the time so the roller coaster starts again.This time when she finally showed up I told her I was just going to have an early night so she left in a sulk, now she is valiantly trying to get my approval back, she knows she has done wrong and  wants off the hook.. I can do that but I have decided I won't be dragged on to that roller coaster again.

I have made arrangements for a cleaning company to come in and for a grocery and medication delivery, she doesn't like it as it takes away from her control but  too bad.

I am not a shrinking violet but I don't like to hurt folks feelings  and she  relies on the fact that I won't give her a piece of my mind.. well she is finding out now I can. I told her and her husband that leaving me alone for so long with signs of heart attack was thoroughly wrong and in the future I will call an ambulance as they are unreliable, they were both stunned but realistically if I rely on them I am doomed.

She dangles Christmas in front of me like a carrot to a donkey, it's on, it's off , she says it is emotional and she can't do it so I end up cooking for a crowd. I love Christmas so she knows I will try to do it, well this year again she said it is off, she got quite a shock when I told her " maybe that is best if you feel that way" what she doesn't know yet is I am am going away. I have  a very close friend, sadly she lives 30 miles from  me, but me and my two little dogs are going there for 3 days. So she can do what she wants. My friends son is picking me up.

I do still drive by the way, it is not a problem I am fine behind the wheel, it is the walking when I get out so my lack of mobility keeps me in the house.

My husband no longer recognizes me  so if I don't get to see him as much as I like he is not aware of that .

Regarding cooking etc.. I still do cook, in fact I make everything from scratch even bread, this is one reason I wanted to go to my husband more often, the meals he was get at home are far superior to what the hospital provides and he loves his food but he seems to have adapted to it. Cooking has been a big interest all my life, I think I would have to be unconscious not to want to do it and it is amazing what one can do sat down. I have done a lot of cooking for my daughter and son in law,she doesn't cook anymore since the kids left she says . At first I took up the slack especially since  I enjoy cooking even though it is physically hard but since this last episode I have told them I am only cooking for myself now.

Since making these new rules I have started sleeping better, I am now eating much better and I feel generally better all round.

So as long as I can keep the control in my own life things seem to be looking up. Keep your fingers crossed for me girls, the reality is I am not a little weak old lady , I can be quite feisty, she relies on what she thinks is me feeling guilty to get her own way, however I don't do guilt but I did give in for a more peaceful life( till it crashed again ) but no more giving in, I shall do what I want  whether she likes it or not. I was a geriatric nurse for many years, then swapped careers and went onto the school system where I left the classroom to take up the job of child protection and parent assist. This trained me in all types of domestic abuse and counselling so really I have all the skills I need. I just needed to put my life in perspective and treat myself like a client which I have managed to do this last two weeks .

I now have to work on leaving the house more,this is my next tough goal as I have stated to be a shut in and am aware of that now. On really good days I could drive, not so good days I can taxi. I do have a mobilty scooter so maybe I will become a mall cruiser LOL.

Your replies mean much more that you realize ,after reading many of your posts and listening to my own common sense I seem to have got some balance back.

Thank you all again..

Yeah..hands up to Granny Power !!!!!




Oh one more thing, someone asked about them taking advantage of me financially, rent etc. Actually no, the opposite is true. They are quite well off and I don't pay anything. I did insist on paying half the utilities but this last year they refused to take that even.. I would prefer to contribute which is one reason whyb  I cooked for them but now I am not. Money is not an issue to them at all.  My daughter is constantly buying things I don't want or need which makes me uncomfortable as she will often come in  without asking and change something that is mine for a better one..if I say no I get temper tantrums and tears but now I am saying NO in a big voice, it is all part of her control, I think she wants me to feel a huge gratitude to her, I do to a point, but not to the point that she wants me to feel totally beholden to her.

XX Jeannine


Good for you. You're seeing the game clearly and make new rules!! Hugs...
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama

Things happens

Good for you Jeannie,

On getting out, do you have a senior center in the area? You should check with them to see if they have a bus that will come and pick you up, ours will even take you to Drs appointments and other places. Just need to give them 2 days notice. My FIL didn't want to do the Senior center, but once he was forced to go (Dr told him he had to get out of the house or else, he thought Drs were gods and did everything they said), he started one day a week, then he said they needed his help and went 3 times a week and then he made all new friends and ended up going Daily, from 10 - 3 or 4 depending what was going on, and had a great Lunch there. So you might look into that just to get you out of the house, and your prior nursing experience maybe you could do blood pressure checks etc for them.

Have a Very Merry Christmas with your Friend  :)


Hi Thank you again... actually I was on a roll yesterday. I had a parcel that was destined for the UK that had been waiting three weeks for someone to mail it.. so I plucked up the courage and went out. I hadn't driven my car for about 2 months  but I was fine, went to the PO and then the supermarket for some treats. It was very hard by myself especially as I was on two  elbow crutches but I did it and  another problem bites the dust. I was so proud of myself.

I have been to the seniors center, it is a very nice facility  apart from the food which is terrible. but there is nothing there I want to do They have a craft group which sounded good for me but in reality they were only knitters and  they only knitted to raise funds for the center. I have done charity  knitting for years  for a group who provide layettes to  low income Mums of new babies leaving hospital and I don't want to start knitting for a different group. I also knit shawls and am thinking seriously  of a starting a group from my home to knit prayer shawls. However that doesn't get me out of the house

The other things they do at the facility don't interest me, it is mainly card games  , exercise classes  or dance.. now I would love to do tap dancing as I danced from aged two till I was 17 . I even have my old shoes, but realistically my mobility is such that I can't.. I would have a go but I know I won't be able to do it. They have some nice trips  but most involve walking. It is a pity they don't simply have a friendship afternoon, just for chat..bring your knitting whatever. I did try to tempt the craft group to add something other than knitting in  the afternoon but the organizer said they wouldn't be interested, Sad really as I have taught crafts to other groups in other areas  for many years in the past and have tons of supplies that I would have gladly donated.

All my life until the last three years   I have done volunteer work but when my husband got really bad I had to stop. I did briefly try going into a local school last year.   Working with the kids was fine but there was a lot of walking to and from classes which was too much for me. I would really love to get some kind of volunteer work that I can do but so far there is nothing in my area. I have not given up on this plan yet though.

You know, I have no problem occupying my time, I sew, knit |I even have a kiln for china painting  but  I know it is not healthy to be on my own so much so changing that is part of my new plan....??

XX Jeannine

Green Thumb

Jeanine, at the senior centers in my area, they LOVE for seniors to speak up and suggest new activities. Why not be the hostess for a social afternoon (tea party, music afternoon, book club, guest speakers)? In other words, you be the leader and start one.  And at senior centers, they don't  mind people in scooters. Maybe you could be a greeter at the front desk?

Mostly I wanted to say that I am impressed at the changes you are making in your life. Maybe you have been expecting or wanting your daughter to be your company, your friend, to be there so you don't feel so isolated? I think she tries to be good to you but from what you write, but I don't think she is capable of being your "all in all." And really, that is okay, we all have our limitations. It is great you have changed the game a little and are saying no and setting boundaries. This is important for your own mental health. 

Your description of your daughter's behavior does sound a lot like my bi-polar adult children. Even though one is very stable, there is still a lot of mood swings and chaos, go go go stuff one day and I hate you the next day. You can't change your daughter, only your expectations and I think you are well on your way to mitigating the chaos and stress.


Jeannine, I love your attitude.  Enjoy Christmas with your friend.  I hope you continue to share your updates.  You inspire.


Respect ... is appreciation of the separateness of the other person, of the ways in which he or she is unique.
-- Annie Gottlieb


Hi all,I tried the head office of the seniors center a couple of days ago about a new group but they siad anything to do with crafts has to go through the craft organiser who has already turned me down.. I don't feel i should have to start a mini war to  volunteer something so their loss ..

It isd a few years sine I went to my church which I was very involved with. We went overseas for 8 years and when we came back it coincided with my husband getting worse plus a lot of my olf friends had moved on..then the house move took us out of the area. I didn't start with another church as it was now too hard with my husband and of course I couldn't leave him . Now I think that is my next move..either drive the 45 minutes to the old one or begin here with a new one.. I really feel I need to make this effort.

If there is anyone reading this that is in a similar position to me and is unsure what to do let me try to help.In the beginning it seems impossible but once I made the decision to put some  emotional space between my daughter and myself it gets easier everyday. I am a person , I am not a belonging or a pet and I don't need my adult daughters approval to choose what I want to do or own. It is not easy to accept the fact that the  probably cant/won't be very caring  but I have managed to cross over to being self reliant again and it feels very empowering,, so if you are struggling..just do it.. put aside the fact that she may not like  you for it, it doesn't matter. Practice the art of being selfish a bit more.

My daughter is coming down to see me but she came in a couple of days ago with a toaster that she had bought that she said was better than my one.. I told her to take it back as I liked my one..she argued it was on sale and non returnable , I laughed and said  " well when your old toaster goes you will have one waiting" She started to argue and I excused myself saying I need the bathroom  urgently, when I came back she had gone..2 days of sulking but I won the toaster battle. She simply doesn't get the fact that constantly giving gifts is not taking care of someone, especially when the gifts are unwelcome. I like my red appliances, she prefers stainless steel..what a silly battle LOL.

She keeps telling le I am too old to do things...the reality she just wants me to be needy and for a while there I nearly fell for it. 

One step at a time....even three steps forward and two back still means I am winning

Thought for the day... Never put anything off till you are older, otherwise you may find one day you are too old to do it !!!!

Thank you all again

XX Jeannine


Just a shift in perspective: To me you are 'younger'...I'm 88! And I'm still not too sure what I want to be when i grow up.So far, having my own Web-forum is pretty nice! ;)
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. Dalai Lama