This is from my brother who was in town visiting with my parents when I was away.
After spending time with my (memory and behaviorally challenged) parents this past week, I came home with the feeling both they are and I am being cheated out of the things that give us value in life. When I get emotionally wrapped up with my mom’s antics, I find myself continually responding as her son, helper and then (sometimes) disciplinarian. I feel like I need to get her to understand that she is not making sense, and/or she can’t remember that she can’t remember anymore. Part of me needs to win the crazy argument logic, and the other part of me realizes this is not my mother, and there is no win if she is beaten down. Sometimes I see the fear in her face as she cannot process or comprehend what is happening. As Neil Young would sing, this leaves me feeling helpless, helpless, helpless.
There are still some things I just can’t let go of, like false statements, risky behaviors and meanness. What I cannot get my mind around (while with my parents) is that none of what we try to do for them really matters anymore, and part of the problem is my behavior. Sure we need to look out for them, but they do not recognize or care about our (siblings) efforts almost all of the time now. After spending exhausting days with them, and feeling like I am too losing my mind, I return home and feel guilt and resignation that we have already gone over the edge and are not coming back. Weakened.