Family & Relationship Issues

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Ask Dr. Schwartz
Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions

dealing with demanding mother

My sister died last year and I have had a very difficult time coming to terms with her death. She lived with our demanding mother (after my sister's divorce). On my sister's death bed, I even had to keep telling my mother to say "I Love You" to her as she lay dying. She passed away a short time later. Now I see how difficult my mother makes things and drives people nuts. I didn't live near her because my husband said we would be divorced because of her meddling and selfishness. How do I go on and turn off my mothers constant complaints. She now lives with my nephew (sister's son and his 4 children he is raising on his own). He tunes her out, but I feel guilt just like my sister did and she did not have a life because of our mother. She complains the house is noisy, not enough attention from the kids, can't go anywhere, etc... I do go and see her once a month and take her shopping, doctor, wherever she wants to go. If I mention my husband and I want to go on a vacation she guilts me into not going because she can't go. She is 84 and when my child was small I never stopped her from traveling and going with her friends, but she is always upset if my nephew has a date or my husband and I want a life. How do I get over this guilt about my sister's death and my mother's constant complaining? Thank you

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