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Old 07-30-12, 10:30 AM
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Default My parents....

**disclaimer** this turned out very long and personal, so beware and bless you for reading!**

So, my parents aren't perfect, and neither is my extended family. We don't visit a lot, don't talk all that much, and are all spread out over the east coast. We are just not a close knit family and never have been, so it is something I am used to and have dealt with.

My mom and I don't have that sort of BFF, share-everything, relationship. It has gotten better over the years I think, though. But lately she seems to be forgetting things, insiting she told me something or that I didn't tell her something. So on Friday I called and left a message at their house b/c I hadn't spoken to them since the 14th of this month. My dad calls me back and tells me that my mom is out of town for 2 weeks, visting my brother and his family in New York. She never mentioned this to me that I recall. So I ask my dad if Alzheimer's runs in my mom side of the family and he wants to know why I am asking this. And I tell him because me and my younger sister have noticed her forgetfullness lately. Well, that just opened a whole can of worms! My dad says he is glad to hear someone else noticed and that he tried to bring up going to see a doctor to my mom (because she is always humming and constantly making noise he said, along with the forgetting things) and she got very defensive, asking him if she thought she was crazy and telling him she wants a divorce.

Now, I've heard this from my dad before. (and even once from my mom) My dad says he has heard this for the past 20 years; they have been married for 31. He says my mom tells him that he is dumb, stupid, can't do anything right, and she wants to sell the house and split up at least every few years, sometimes only a few months will go by between rants. But then on the flip side, they have talked about selling the house together and retiring to Tennessee...what the heck they would do there together is a mystery to me! My dad even told a few years ago a doctor prescribed depression medication to my mom, but when she saw how much it was she declared she couldn't afford it and didn't need it anyways.

But this time my dad sounded a little more defeated; he said he doesn't want a divorce, but he is tired of fighting it. "If that what she wants.." He said he would probably go back to Indiana, where he is from. He has not been back there since his parents died when I was in highschool. I'm not sure if that is b/c my mom didn't want to or what, but I have an aunt & uncle that I have not seen since then either. He is hoping during this 2 week seperation she will come back to her senses; he even wants to fix up her paint job on her car so it is all nice and shiny when she comes home.

Selfishly, all I could think of was having 2 parents in seperate states and how on earth we would do holidays or even have the kids get to see their grandparents if they were apart, especially miles apart when we have so many other relatives all over the place that we don't get too see very often either. (b/c travel is expensive and getting time off of work, etc) I feel streched so thin already most days. But then I started thinking that maybe it would be best, maybe thet would be happier. But I fear for my dad. His health is not the greatest and he has no life. He is not social, so he has no male friends or a club, or anything he participates in. I don't know if he became that way because of my mom, or was always that way.

I mean, this may turn out to be nothing...they could end up staying together until the end, just griping and complaining about each other until they no longer can speak. Which apparently is what my maternal grandparents did.

I know this is a little heavy for a Monday, but I haven't told anyone else about this. I feel like I would be betraying my parents privacy if I talked to a friend who actually knows them, especially if nothing comes out of this. I told hubby of course, but no one else. I have not even had a chance to speak to my sister about it. I tried Friday night, but she was busy and then I was busy the rest of the weekend with my in-laws visiting. I have 2 older half-siblings but since my dad is their step-dad and it was a somewhat strained and forced relationship I am not sure how much they would even care. My brother would probably be happy.

And I told my dad, even though I have older half-siblings, when it comes to my and my younger sister, since I am the oldest I feel like decisions about their health and other things it will come down to me when it is time and I don't have a clue where to start. I struggle to organize my own life as it is! My parents are in there 60's and I feel like I don't know how to process this. I'd rather they had done this when I was kid, ya know?

Last edited by MrsS1stbaby; 07-30-12 at 10:56 AM.
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Old 07-30-12, 11:18 AM
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Wow. **Hugs**. Sounds really rough, but hopefully it may work out between the two. And also hoping your mom may just consider something is wrong and no one is trying to jump on her. Not to thread jack, but my grandma seems to be going through it and she doesn't want to admit it or try to help. She's bounced back to the 1970s on many occasions. I have no advice for you there since we are still battling with her. But keep your head up!
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Old 07-30-12, 01:26 PM
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Do your best to try to get her to see her doctor. Even if it is just needing an antidepressant there are lots of generic inexpensive ones. If you can prove to her (without her freaking out) that she is getting forgetful maybe that will help.

If they do split, are you closer to your dad? Hopefully you could get him to move near you instead of someplace like Indiana.
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Old 07-30-12, 02:44 PM
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Sounds like she brings up the splitting thing as a bluff, I doubt she'd go through with it all if it came down to it.

Take her to a Dr.! You go and your Dad too. You can bs and say you need to go because it concerns family medical history, etc. It can also help if you talk to you brother and see if he can collaborate anything having just spent two weeks with her (i.e. "I was just a little worried until I talked to brother and he confirmed the same"). Try to leave you dad out of it until the Dr. asks him any direct questions, that we she can't bring it back to him.

Good luck!
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Old 07-30-12, 04:21 PM
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That sounds awful.

It sounds like many of you are concerned about your mother showing signs of Alzheimer's and if that's the case, that disease often comes with some sort of dementia, which could easily be causing her disposition toward your dad. I think the best course of action is to seek medical treatment, even if she is resistant at first, to get a start on what could be a quick downward spiral for them both.

Gretchen, this is the pits! I hope you're able to get something figured out. Seek the assistance of other family members. Don't try to do it all on your own. And keep coming back here to vent, because you'll likely need a sounding board.
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