My dad and step mom are both 85 years old and have been married for about 25 years. My step mom has always been the more agressive person in the relationship and has pushed dad around for a long time. Then again, dad has let himself be pushed around.
Dad was diagnosed with dementia about 10 years ago and my step mom has used that as a weapon against him for a long time. There are times now he needs prompting to tie shoes or zip his zipper but generally functions ok. The other day I called home and my step mom said, that dad would call back in a little bit because they were eating lunch. Ok, no problem. Then she added, "You know your dad eats more than me." I was a little dumbfounded and answered "ok" I didn't want to give her statement any power because in the big scheme of things it was pretty meaningless. For whatever it is worth, they are both of an appropriate weight.
So here is my question, are these snitty little remarks a passive-agressive thing on my step mom's part or could it be a sign of dementia in her because she doesn't know what else to say? Or do I just need to get over it?
thank you for your thoughts, after rereading my post, I thought I souded a little harsh.
I deal with my own guilt being so far away but this is a decision I made a long time ago and would be difficult to change now. I am grateful for my step family as they have been very good to the folks.
I live a long way away and even though I speak with them several times a week, I do not know everything that happens.
Please, don't get me wrong, I am not looking to vilanize my stepmom, and I also realize much of what goes on between them is a two way street and she is reacting to what he says or does.
My step mom will use the dementia as a weapon by saying things to dad like, " No you can't drive because the doctor said you will get lost." The next day she will want to go shopping or visit her sister and tell him to drive her there because she doesn't like to drive. Dad will admit to having gotten lost a few times and if I had my druthers he wouldn't be driving, nor would she. Unfortunately I live 2000 miles away. I suppose weapon is a strong word, control is more like it. They have a pretty robust support system around them and my stepmom's daughter and adult grandchildren have treated dad like gold. Both of them have siblings and a church family and are still pretty active.
I really appreciated your thoughts, we are also caregivers of an in-law who has alzheimers and there are new challenges every day.
I guess I really needed to think out loud to someone. Thank you, again!