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'AITA for leaving my disabled mom with no caregivers after giving her over 6 months notice?'

'AITA for leaving my disabled mom with no caregivers after giving her over 6 months notice?'


Recognizing your limits with family members can be an emotionally awkward process, to say the least.

"AITA for leaving my disabled mom with no caregivers after giving her over 6 months notice?"

TL;DR: I moved in with my disabled mom (65) to get back on my feet after a divorce and caring for my 5-year-old and finishing school. Her disability has increased greatly and she can't care for herself. She is still working. I told her 6 months before I would move and provided her with a lot of information to help her.

Now I'm moving in 2 weeks, nothing is set up, and she's scrambling to figure out what to do. I'm going to move regardless but I'm worried about her and feel guilty. AITA?

I (27) work at a skilled nursing facility as an occupational therapy assistant, have a 5-year-old girl, and have been caregiving for my mom (65) after moving in 2 years ago after a nasty divorce left me broke and I was finishing college. My mom has spinal stenosis, which is essentially causing her to be slowly paralyzed from about the middle back down.

When I moved in, she was still able to walk to the bathroom but used a wheelchair when going further. I didn't really agree to become her caregiver but ended up do more and more because she suddenly started to decline.

By the time I was in my last year of college I was spending around 6 hours throughout the day helping her transfer to and from the toilet (two times at night), helping her get dressed, caring for her reoccurring wounds, taking her to appointments, as well as taking on all the house work as she now can't do much more than take a single step.

Because I wasn't able to pay rent I did all this even when my mental health started to take a massive hit. At that point, I made it clear that she should start looking for a caregiver because I planned on moving after working for a few months.

After I graduated and began looking for a job I started bringing up finding a different caregiver more often and even took the time to provide information from caregiver agencies, home share programs, senior center discounts, helped her sign up for Medicare, and find a lawyer that specialized in financial and estate planning to prepare for qualifying for Medicaid without loosing the house or her savings.

She still works (work from home, computer work). After getting a job I told her outright that I would be moving in June and she needed to move forwards with one of the options. I even offered to help pay for care and meet any caregivers so I could show and explain to them how she wanted things done. She kept brushing it off every time.

I told her I was going to at least have a meeting with an agency that was lower cost but when they got here she told them she didn't want to pay their rate ($38 per hour). I'm moving in 2 weeks. Nothing has been set up. Her current plan is to find a nursing school student and offer them $30 and hour to drop by whenever she calls them.

She doesn't want them around while she works in case they make noise while she's on a call. So, I'm going to move no matter what. I am going to help her for 2 hours after work 3 days a week and help her shower every weekend but she's going to be on her own for the most part. AITA?

Commenters had a lot to say.

Excellent-Count4009 wrote:


"I'm moving in 2 weeks. Nothing has been set up."

She is doing this on purpose to guilt you into staying.

"So, I'm going to move no matter what."

Very good. Escape, and reclaim your own life.

LoveBeach8 wrote:

NTA. As long as she's able to make her own decisions, meaning she's not suffering from Alzheimer's or any other form of dementia, you can't force her. You may both want to consider appointing you as her DPOA since you say she's declining. Call your local Social Services. Check out Assisted Living facilities and what they cost.

They can be a little pricey, depending on where you live. You gave her 6 months so she's had plenty of time to get on her computer and check other options. Promise her that you'll check in with her as soon as you get settled. She needs to be on her own so she realizes how much she needs help. She's currently in denial.

OP responded:

That was part of the research I did. We even went on many tours but she said she didn't want to give up the house. So I went the route of home care and hiding assets for Medicaid. Honestly, paying for all the costs of a home and a caregiver costs about twice as much as living in an assisted living at the highest level of care.

Gwywnnydd wrote:

NTA. Your mom is refusing to take appropriate care of herself. Honestly, the only reason she is still in her own place is because she has had a live-in caregiver. You need to move out. This is going to infuriate your mom. That's her problem, not yours. She's probably going to scream, cry, and send you on a deluxe guilt trip. NONE OF THIS IS YOUR FAULT. Don't let her convince you it is.

Compensatorypause wrote:

Sometimes leaving things to the last minute motivates you to do great things...hopefully your mom is that way. NTA.

Dana07620 wrote:

NTA. Did you mom think that if she did nothing that you would stick around? Or did she refuse to believe that you would leave? Sounds like you have done a ton of work prepping her for the move. It's time to move. But you do know that she's probably going to be calling you all the time asking you to come over and help her. You need to figure out what you're going to do about that.

Though I question if your mother can live by herself. If she can't even transfer to the toilet by herself then she either needs someone living there full time or she needs to live in a nursing home. (The level of care you describe her as needing is above the level that an assisted living facility would do.)

AdministrationLow960 wrote:

She's been procrastinating because she likely does not want to deal with this problem. It is daunting to find a caregiver that is both cost effective and trustworthy. Also, she is delusional if she thinks a nursing student can come by on a moments notice. Those students are extremely busy every day, all day. They cannot walk out of class or clinicals without being kicked out of their program. NTA.

No-Sample-5262 wrote:

Looks to me like you did try to help her find a solution but she’s just in denial, probably thinking you’re not gonna leave or something. It’s quite unfair of her to expect you to shoulder this burden. I know she’s your mother but you also have a life. NTA.

Sources: Reddit
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