Aging brings with it many losses. Some seniors feel enraged by these changes, and others are terrified by the lack of control. Sadly, when people feel backed into a corner, they often "let fly" with the safest person: the caregiving family member. If spending time with your relative leaves you feeling worthless, picked on, or controlled, that’s cause for concern. And action.
In the extreme, your relative’s angry or controlling behavior may constitute emotional abuse:
- Threats and demands. “If you don’t spend the night, I won’t get out of bed. I’ll just lie here wet.”
- Humiliation. “A 10-year-old could do it better.”
- Dominance and isolation. “If you go to work, I’ll know you don’t really care about me.”
- Blame. “Since you started giving me my pills, I haven’t felt good. You must not be doing it right.”