Everything Southern & So Cotton Pickin Cute

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Have You Seen My Ugly Side

I don't like it.  I do my best not to have one.  But we all do.  I do my best to keep it to myself, hidden from others.  I've never seen a reason to be ugly to people or mean just because I'm having a bad day.  Of course I can be ugly.  I can get mean right back to someone who's horrible to me.  I'll probably hear from some of you telling me that I should be more understanding, less selfish.  For 3 years she has gotten ruder and meaner but and I for almost the whole part have lived with, tried to pretend it wasn't said and on and on.  But now it is so much worse.

My MIL's 90th birthday is tomorrow.  It should be a time of great celebrate.  A milestone that few get to mark.  She has alienated everyone and now there is no one to celebrate.  Her Granddaughter did call to say she'd like to get together tomorrow.  For years I put on birthday celebrations, bought many gifts, landscaped her yard, went shopping with her, took her to Drs., painted her house several times inside and out, sewed curtains and on and on.  She always said birthdays don't mean a thing.  She kept a calendar with her second husbands children, grandchildren and her children's birthdays and never mine or my son.  That hurt but I still always never said anything.I just tried to be as good to her as I would my own Mother.  She never has been the type to say thank you or to do for others but she was not rude.  In the last 2 weeks she has cursed us out as well as the rehabilitation therapist, the nursing aid and anyone else who speaks to her.  Rehabilitation said there is no point on them coming back because she won't cooperate.  You say that shirt makes your eyes look pretty and she say something rude and smart.  I've changed her sheets every day this week.  One evening she went back to bed after going to the bathroom and didn't put on clean panties  That morning when we woke her and she was wet she still refused to clean up or let me help.  She actually was so out of control when Neil and I tried to get her into the shower I told him to just help her stand up and I would clean her.  She was slapping and hitting the entire time.  What do you do?  I couldn't leave her like that.  But her  words are even worse and more painful.  The way she speaks to the people who come in our home to help her.  She tells us daily that she doesn't know how she got here but she'll never step foot in here again (with many explicative's) and she puts her finger in our face and says I never want to see you or you again.   One time she even took my childhood bible that I put on her beside to read since hers wasn't there and she tore out all the pages with my family history and when the bible was given to me, ripped them up and through them behind her beside table and of course denied it.  I never said a word though Neil did.  I was so hurt.

I know you all want to tell me how it's not her fault and how I should be more understanding.  It's true, I'm sure, but I'm so tired of burying the hurt, pain and yes anger that I feel.  I'm tired of  being nice only to be treated like a maid. I have feelings too.  My tension headaches are getting worse, I can hardly eat (which may be a good thing).

So friends I have a request.  Please, Please say a prayer for my heart.  Please pray that it will soften again,  pray that I can be someone Jesus would be proud of.  But also pray that just maybe my family can appreciate what I try to do.   Pray for me not to be selfish or stubborn.  I hope I  haven't run off all my friends but I was going to scream if I didn't get this out.

With a heart of sorrow and tears.....Tracy

P.S.  I bet there are a ton of mistakes in this but I'm to tired to read over it so I hope it makes sense.
And yes I know she is scared and this is probably her way of dealing with it unfortunately I'm worn out from dealing with it to long.  I just want to love her but maybe I don't have enough love.


  1. *HUGS* Hang in there hun and just know you are a good person!

  2. Tracy I have a mother in law very similar. The thing to do is move far away from them, which my husband did as soon as he turned 18. I always said I had a mother in law from Hell !! Mine is 93 and it seems there are a lot of women like this when I talk to others. It's such a shame you are stuck there near by and I really feel for you but what can you do? It sounds like she is really loosing it mentally. Try and stay away from her as much as you can if that is possible it's taking down your health too. You know this is all on her and does not reflect on you in anyway so don't feel bad yourself, it's not worth it.
    Hugs Nan

  3. Hi Tracy ~ Not Your Ugly side at all, Just Your Human Side ~ You so Need a Great Big Hug, I so wish I could be there to help you out with whatever it is YOU NEED! You are Certainly in My Prayers, for Strength & Guidance..... the lady I take care with Alzheimers has had Horrible Outburst, I have been choked, had fists in my face & Yelled at many times, Believe Me, I have walked out for moments, knowing that I can turn around & come back in just a few minutes & things will be totally different, she has forgotten about the entire scene. I do feel for You, Your MIL seems like a Bitter Woman, Nothing You have done, Nothing You Can Do. I really feel that sometimes, People Lash out & Hurt the People that they Feel they Can Hurt the Most!
    A few suggestions that may or may not work:
    Have you tried, just ignoring her? Doing what you need to do for her at the moment, but not directly speaking to her or even looking at her? Sometimes, they are just asking for a fight & when they have No interaction, they will lose Interest.....
    Does Your MIL have Dementia, Alzheimers????
    My Mom had Dementia, from Diagnosis to Dying was less than 3 years. My Mom was the Sweetest Most Gentle Mom Growing up, but as the Brain deteriorated, Her Disposition flipped, she Swore, Hit & was Bitterly Anger, all from such a horrible Disease...... Sounds like Your MIL has had issue for quite a while.... Is it at all possible to move her into a nursing home, I know Your Husband is probably against that & the costs can be out of the question, but you both need to think of the consequences of furthering this behavior. If you ever need to talk, please call me, I would be so happy to just lend my ear~ email me if you ever want my # zanymaydoriginals@yahoo.com

    You are in My Prayers & My Thoughts ~ I am hoping you have a much better restful night of sleep, things may look better in the morning.
    regarding her Birthday, a small cake with dinner & a card ~ or act as if it were just any other day.... Having other people over, may just cause more problems ~ I sure hope you have some one that is able to give you a break every other day or so.... You Can Not take the weight of the World on ~
    Big Hugs to You Sweet Lady

  4. Tracy...

    Oh my friend. I can relate in many ways to your hurting heart. Although my MIL has never screamed or yelled at me or cursed me out or done many of the things you mentioned, she was unloving to me just the same... For whatever the reason in her eyes I just never measured up.

    I've been married to this woman's son just a few days short of 32 years. I've been a loving wife and tried my best to not only meet his needs but also worked very hard to raise two beautiful children who have now grown up to be loving, beautiful, compassionate human beings.

    After years of snide remarks that attacked my denomination (not my Christianity mind you, just my church of choice), my parenting skills, my decorating style, my weight, my nails, my hair, my makeup, etc. I finally gave up. I've remained just like I've always been to her but emotionally I totally detached...with my hubby's blessing.

    This woman just turned 80 years old and although I still send gifts for Christmas, Birthday and Mother's Day I decided long ago that I would do it for one reason and one reason only. I chose to honor her for doing the ONE THING I felt she had done right...and that was to raise a son of the highest moral character, the kindest, most loving, gentle man I've ever known...

    My MIL never nurtured my children and as a result they grew up with little feelings for her. When she passes any sadness or sorrow they feel will be directed towards their father...not for her.

    As a result of this woman's behavior I made a decision a long time ago that I would fully embrace my children's mates and do the best I could to be a loving, kind, MIL. Although there have been a few moments of quiet despair (and sometimes verbal despair) I love them both so very much and I know they love me. At present I only have one grand-girl and she is the light of my life...I hope to have at least a couple more someday. I can't imagine being anything less than ALL God has called and required me to be for them.

    I'm sharing this with you so you will know you are not alone...

    I pray you will find the strength to continue to be the loving, kind and giving person you are. Your heart will never be judged by how this woman reacts to your giving ways...it will be judged simply by your willingness to love.

    Prayers going up in your behalf...

    Love to you~


  5. Thanks for visiting my blog and for the kind comment. And no this is not your ugly side at all. You are just human. It would be impossible to not let all this affect you. Praying for your strength. Although I feel you are so much more stronger and kinder than you think you are.

  6. Tracy,
    It sounds like it is time for her to be elsewhere...I know that sounds easy and hopefully there is another place for her to go....even if she doesn't really know what she is doing, it is far too hurtful for you and your family....I will pray that there will be another answer for her to live elsewhere....your heart is hurt and rightly so.....NO one can put up with this kind of behavoir for long....my grandmother was horrid at the end of her life. ANd thank God there was a residential community that took her....I know she would have been mortified by her behavoir....but I have heard a lot of elderly folks get down right mean and nasty in their last years. Pleae look for another solution! ALways enjoy your blog....:)

  7. I'm so sorry to hear about your difficult times with your MIL. I went through the same thing 8 years ago. Luckily one of the nurses at her doctor's office told me to ask the doctor about giving her Risperdal.

    The doctor said that just like with everything else in the body when "old age" sets in the chemicals in the brain start to malfunction.

    Risperdal is a calming med. It is an antipsychotic medication. It works by changing the effects of chemicals in the brain.

    Risperdal is used to treat schizophrenia and symptoms of bipolar disorder and it is also used in autistic children to treat symptoms of irritability. And, it is used to aid the elderly when their brain chemistry changes.

    I called it my MIL's Happy Pill. Ask her doctor about Risperdal.

    Great blog!


  8. Tracy, you most certainly have all my prayers.
    This is a difficult situation, and even though you rationally know that she is suffering from some sort of mental incapacity, it still hurts.

    Rest in God's arms this night.

  9. Oh Tracy darling *hugs*
    I have seen just how ugly older people can be when the mood takes them, (I worked in care of the elderly many years ago) but you dear lady are doing this out of nothing but kindness and love.
    You should be commended for how you put up with this abuse instead of worrying that you have an 'ugly side'.
    Love and prayers from across the ocean.
    Em xxxxxx

  10. aww..i'll be praying...and its good to let it all out...anywhere b/c holding thngs in is just terrible...you need a vacation! May the Joy and Peace of the Lord rest upon you!!

  11. My prayers are with you and your family. It is a difficult thing to go through, but God will reward you for loving and caring.

  12. You are an angel to care for your MIL in her old age. Care of an elderly relative should be shared so no one person is carrying the whole load all of the time. You have earned your angel wings!

  13. Hi Tracy -

    I don't think you're being mean or unreasonable at all. I wish I had some words of wisdom to share with you that would help your situation but I don't. I do however have lots of big {{{HUGS}}} for you. Please don't feel bad for feeling the way your do. I will keep you in my prayers. Please feel free to e-mail me if you want to vent.

  14. Oh Tracy, Your mother-in-law's behavior is classic in dementia of the elderly. Please, please see past this to find some comfort for your heart. I fear she will be a bitter memory when she passes, and I know you don't want this for your husband. If she were in a nursing home, this is how she would react towards her caregivers as well. Stay kind, stay strong, stay yourself! All my prayers for you! Elizabeth

  15. Oh my heart hurts for you...My Dad got so mean the last years of his life that he eventually ran everyone off...There is just so much you can take...There were days he was violent...and days
    I feared I would never go back...Praying for you

  16. I don't know the whole story as I'm just now visiting your blog, but your story tugs at my heart. I too have had some "issues" with my MIL. I do hope you listen to all the comments here and accept that you are NOT being a bad person in feeling the way you do. The human spirit can only handle so much...but that doesn't make you thoughtless, bad, or uncaring. I agree with others that your MIL is suffering from "something" whether it's mental illness, fear, anger at what her life has become, whatever. But I also agree that it is time for something to be done IF there is any way out for you and I believe that where there's a will there must be a way. Talk with her dr., your pastor, local mental health services...somebody. Find out your options. If other family members won't share in the work, then you must find a way out of this for you. Your husband should understand this, too. You shouldn't let your health be endangered anymore than it already has and your spirit should not continue to be broken each and every day. You have done more than should be expected of you. In the meantime, I will pray for you and your situation. But YOU must decide in which direction you will go...and then live with your decision. God bless.

  17. Oh Sweetie, so sorry I've been away so long and so sorry for your situation...Thank you for your encouragement, and now if I can give you some... You have value...your life and the quality of your life has value...Christ does not call us to bear the burden alone...he calls us to lean not onto our own understanding, but on him. No matter what excuse can be made for your MIL behavoir now, the truth of the matter is that she has never been very kind to you. I once heard that old age doesn't change us it only intensifies who we were when we were young... A life time ago I worked in elder care as well, so I believe this to be true... I know Neil is very close and supportive of his mother...but.... You need kindness and love and a break! She needs a third party elder sitter. I know there are agencies out there somewhere, I'll see if I can help you research some... Even if someone can come in to bath her a few times a week and give you a break away from her. Or better yet, one of those volunteer organizations that will come and pick her up in a van and take her to a day center. She won't be the first combative they've handled. Ditto to everything the ladies said above. Your always in my thoughts and prayers...

    XOXO Keke

  18. I'll be brief and say that I "feel" for you and in some ways can relate...but mostly I WILL be praying for you.
    May His grace abound in your heart and may His peace guide you continually you beautiful daughter of the Most High King! <3

  19. My dear, she is mentally ill. At her age dementia is part of her life and one of the side effects is anger, unreasonable behavior and just plain hateful. Both my in-laws are in an Alzeheimer's facility at 94 and 87. Before they went in we went through horror with them. You aren't awful at all...you are worn out with this situation. She needs to be in a facility with trained professionals. I urge you to pursue this avenue. My husband and I can sleep since his parents are in the nursing home. It is really where she belongs. Honey, she is ill. Maggie

  20. This is not your ugly side.....this is your angel side. We can all be angels when things are going our way or even when the struggles are small, but this struggle of yours is enormous. From what i read, you are coping, and now you are sharing. You are taking excellent care of this elderly family member who might already be in a nursing home if it wasn't for you. I admire you so very much. To me you are a saint. Know that my prayers are for you, your husband, and your MIL. I will also ask my church family to pray for each of you. My advice as a registered nurse is to share all of this with her physician. There are so many good medicines today that could help her. She is coming to the end of her life and her spiritual side definitely needs attention. Maybe there is an antidepressant or antipsychotic that could help calm her so that you can start focusing on that with her. Right now that is impossible except in your own prayers. Another bit of advice which has been mentioned several times in the comments: get someone else to care for her while you and your husband go out (even if its to another part of the house)or go out with some friends. Ask other family members to help out. Home Health Care, home sitter services, ask your pastor or priest if they know anyone. Even Adult Protective Services would be of great assistance. They can provide referrals and a place to voice your concerns. Not that you have done anything to physically harm her, in fact, she has tried to physically harm you! The concern is for everyones emotional and spiritual health. My heart goes out to you. Take care of you, so you can better take care of her. Remember, if the plane were going down, you would put your own oxygen on first, then help someone else. May our Lord, the great physician, heal the hurt in your heart. Louise

  21. Thank you all for your kindness and love. Your prayers mean so much to me. Louise, if you read this I would love to have an email or blog address for you so I can thank you personally.

    Hugs...Tracy :)