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Question
Posted by: sue | 2010/05/20

Elderly Parents

Hi Doc,

My mon (75) and Dad (80) decided at my mothers pushing, that they would go and live with my brother and his family in Australia a few months back. My mom is a very difficult depressive person, and has drien my sister in law to the edge of sanity with her victim mentality and constant moaning and nastiness. My mom has decided that they must come back to SA for a holiday (I know she''ll try andstrong arm my father into staying, although they cant afford it as they sold up at a loss to ove over to Oz). I''ve been tld by my parents that they will be coming to stay with us (I''m a single mom with a 9yr old daughter) for 6 weeks +. The problem is, I lve in a one bedroom flat, which is hardly big enough for my daughter and I. My mother and I have never hada good relationship, as she is so negative and mean spirited. I''d have to put them up in my lounge, turning it into a bedroom for them - they go to bed at 8pm, so we''d have to leave he lounge at that time. i get up at 04h30 to get ready for work etc, so that wouldnt sit well with them either.
I bathroom etc etc. I am besides myself . I cant bear the thought of having my little home taken over, and I cant bear the thought of havin my mom on my back for 6 plus weeks.
Would I be spiteful and selfish to tell them no? I''ve told them I''d fin them a rental to stay in for the duration (it could go on for months or years even if my mom as her way). They said they wont stay anywhere except with me.
I could sit and cry! How do I do this?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Gosh. Sounds like your mom's range of planning and expectations are highly unrealistic, and selfishly focussed on what she wants rather than on whatever is reasonable or even feasible.
Before they leave of finalize their plans, tell them clearly and firmly that it will NOT be practical for them to stay with you, as it will not work for them to share a 1 bedroom flat with you and your daughter, especially with the demands of your essential job, etc. Don't accept any argument about that. It would not be in the least spiteful or selfish to tell them these facts. By all means offer to HELP to find them a rental, but be cautious even then not tomsign leases or furnish deposits, etc., for them. As Woman wisely says, give them some options as to other flats, and let THEM choose, so they can't blame you if, as is likely the don't like the flat they use.
And if they refuse to come unless they stay with you - then let them refuse to come. This is to be assertive, nor aggressive, and to stand up for your rights as an individual and for those of your child. Don't fear her anger - its probabl inevitable that she will continue to be angry about many things - that sounds as characteristic of her as the colour of your eyes - and equally not your fault or responsibility.
When you're a child, you have few altyernatives but to follow your mom's directives, whether they be sensible or senseless. Wen youj are adult you have choices, and she has only the power you choose to give her. Don't choose to give her any

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3
Our users say:
Posted by: LG | 2010/05/20

Oh I know exactly how you feel. My elderly parents came for an operation and have been staying with me for a month, hopefully leaving in the next 2 days.It souds like you are describing my mother!! All I can tell you is good luck. I have nearly gone (or maybe I have and don''t know it yet) mad. I have thought many times over the past month to rent a room somewhere for myself, since they won''t go and stay elsewhere. Maybe that is another option, I know that you don''t want to leave your place, after all it is your place, but if your mom is like mine, she''d take over anyway, I got interogated about my bathroom habits, the sms'' that I received and when I pick up my car keys to go somewhere, so maybe moving out for the six weeks is not such a bad idea. I know that is probably what I''d be doing if I knew beforehand that it was going to be an extended stay. All the best for you.

Reply to LG
Posted by: Woman | 2010/05/20

You know, if I were you, I''d find them a short term furnished rental. Find one, email your mom the site or pictures of all the different flats and have her arrange her own stay. Fact is, you just do not have enough space to have an extra 2 people in your very small flat. That way, you choose when to see her and your and your daughter''s schedule isn''t completely buggered.

Write her a letter and merely explain that you just don''t have enough space for 4 people in your apartment, but that you found alternative accommodation for them and it will cost them Rxxx for their 6 week stay. If she''s angry about that, it''s her problem, not yours.

We have close family all over the world, when they come visit, they stay in their own place, it makes the reunion sweet, and with minimum fuss. - for everyone.

Reply to Woman
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/05/20

Gosh. Sounds like your mom's range of planning and expectations are highly unrealistic, and selfishly focussed on what she wants rather than on whatever is reasonable or even feasible.
Before they leave of finalize their plans, tell them clearly and firmly that it will NOT be practical for them to stay with you, as it will not work for them to share a 1 bedroom flat with you and your daughter, especially with the demands of your essential job, etc. Don't accept any argument about that. It would not be in the least spiteful or selfish to tell them these facts. By all means offer to HELP to find them a rental, but be cautious even then not tomsign leases or furnish deposits, etc., for them. As Woman wisely says, give them some options as to other flats, and let THEM choose, so they can't blame you if, as is likely the don't like the flat they use.
And if they refuse to come unless they stay with you - then let them refuse to come. This is to be assertive, nor aggressive, and to stand up for your rights as an individual and for those of your child. Don't fear her anger - its probabl inevitable that she will continue to be angry about many things - that sounds as characteristic of her as the colour of your eyes - and equally not your fault or responsibility.
When you're a child, you have few altyernatives but to follow your mom's directives, whether they be sensible or senseless. Wen youj are adult you have choices, and she has only the power you choose to give her. Don't choose to give her any

Reply to cybershrink

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