Originally Posted by mamazee
The issue is that the mother shouldn't be expected to be obligated to drop everything at any time for adult children.
I will always want to help my children, but that doesn't mean I will drop EVERY thing at ANY time. I would evaluate the situation and decide if I'm truly needed right that second or not. My mom has done the same thing for me. She's dropped out of school before to help me with DD, when she was fighting for her life in the NICU. I would do the same for my children. A school quarter can be taken later. A child and grandchild needing help can't wait. I've called my mom in the middle of the night to watch DD while DBF took me to the ER (bad allergic reaction). She knew it couldn't wait. Sure, I could have hauled DD to the ER with me, but then she would have been around tons of germs, which is very, very bad for her.
If my mom is in an important meeting, and I call her upset about something, she will tell me to wait and she will call me back. If she's in a meeting and I called to tell her DD was taken by squad, she'd leave immediately.
I don't think many people are going to indiscriminately cater to every single one of their child's wishes. The OP already put a disclaimer about unhealthy co-dependency situations. We're talking real-life NORMAL situations where people need a family member to lean on. I'm having a hard time believing that anyone here thinks it's ridiculous for my mom will drop what she's doing to help when I'm in a bad situation. And I don't mean "bad" like I burnt dinner and need her to run and get me some fast food. I mean "bad" like my kid is in the hospital or I just left my husband.
Is it "expected" that she should do these things for me? No. But if she didn't we wouldn't have the great relationship we have now. If my DD was taken by squad and she said "Oh well I'm out shopping right now so you're on your own!" I wouldn't be close to her. That is a selfish attitude and I wouldn't want to be around her. And I certainly wouldn't be giving back to her. She'd still be my mom, but I wouldn't have any attachment to her. Knowing she cared more about shopping than her granddaughter or her daughter would pretty much fizzle out the relationship.
Thankfully she is nothing like that.
And yes, I intend to take care of her when she is old. It's a two-way relationship.