Have you ever had an argument with a loved one and started to cry? And then the other person asks you what's wrong and you superglue your lips shut and grunt like the other person is the stupidest person on the planet because any psychic can FIGURE OUT WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOU. The male version of this scenario is you ask him what's wrong and he goes outside and mows the lawn. Even though you live in a New York high-rise surrounded by concrete. So he has to mow the balcony. Another thing you don't have.
Which brings me to my Mother's meltdown.
Due to her macular degeneration, she's convinced she's going to go blind in the next 15 minutes. And in her own passive-aggressive way, she found a way to stick the guilt stake right through our hearts.
"But I LOVE to rrrrread."
"How will I get arrrround?"
''My friends cannot believe I have 2 daughters who neverrrr come to visit me."
In 2001, when my dad died in Florida, it took me 3 years to settle his estate, sell 2 apartments, write twenty zillion letters and notarize everything but my ass. The money we spent on lawyers alone was outrageous. It was the only time I wished my dad had been poor. I told my mother that I was not going to fly 6,000 miles to Paris and that she needed to move here.
She did not.
So the other night at Lindy's she started to cry. And wouldn't stop. Or talk when Lindy asked her if she wanted to tell her what's wrong. Crying is a manipulative game and is about the worst thing you can do to yourself. You never get out of your system what is bothering you. I don't play this game. I did it in my dating years and it NEVER worked. Men just shrug and walk away.
For those of you have lost your mothers at an early age and think that I'm being mean or selfish, let me fill you in on the aging parent syndrome. Angry, bitter, nasty liars. My mother told me she never went ANYWHERE while she was at Lindy's. I chose to out my mother to my sister and while Lindy rolled out about 200 things they had done and how hurt she was that mom would say that, my mother turned to me and said "YOU HAVE A BIG MOUTH." I think we'd all agree that is true.
I know so many sons and daughters who have gone through this nightmare with their aging parents. Oh and P.S., they will NEVER move to assisted living, even though Mom isn't there yet. I'm sure some of your older parents are lovely but eventually they'll do a quid pro quo on you because they gave birth to you and were in labor for 3 months. They will fight you to move out of their own domicile.
Mom threatened to sell off all her assets and hire someone to live with her. I told her that sounded like a good idea. I spent half my life in France and I choose not to do it again. If she dies in Paris we'd have to hire French Notaires, American lawyers, sell her considerable amount of antiques, a garage, a maid's room and her 2 bedroom apartment. Did I mention she has a sister who lives 5 minutes away?
Did I mention Paris is 6,000 miles away from Los Angeles?
What would you do?