I have been taking care of my mother now going on five years. Last year, I got married after returning from a deployment overseas. I have come to realize that I have been enabling my mother to lose her independence, and do not know how to undo the damage I have done.
I had made a promise not to place her in assisted living, until she was unable to do the basic activities of daily living, but I am now realizing that she is unable to not because of disease, but because of obstinance.
She is capable of doing a lot more than she does, but uses her diseases to hide from doing them. Simple tasks are not done because of this. We have a respite care provider come and help, but mom crosses the line.
I have set up transportation through the local public transit system, which my mother refuses to use saying that they come late to pick her up or early to get her from her appointments. Or, she will say that she can not go out on her own, because she gets too exhausted. Her exhaustion comes from refusing to realize that she is disabled, and not limiting herself. Instead of a 30-45 minute trip to get a few groceries, she stays 2 hours.
She refuses to take a shower in the winter months, because the bathroom is too cold (the house is set at 78 degrees, and the bathroom has a salamander heating lamp). She instead only sponge bathes.
Over the holidays, I spoke with my older sibling, and our wives about the situation, and realized that I have really been enabling this behavior.
Any tips/advice would really be appreciated.