Thank you for writing in with your question. It is very clear to me that you care a great deal for your mother and are worried about her. I’m sorry that she seems to be going through a rough time right now. Since it has only been a couple weeks that you have noticed a more severe change in her mood, it could be that she is just not feeling well and may pull out of it. It does sound like she has a lot on her plate raising 6 children with your father not being around much. She probably gets tired and overwhelmed. However, keep in mind that your father isn’t at home much because he is working to support the family. And though it may not be ideal, this may be an agreement that your parents have between them.
I appreciate your concern for your mother and know you want to help her if you can, but I want to remind you that you are the child and she is the adult. She is the one in the role of looking out for you and your siblings and making sure your needs are met. It is not your job to take care of her. Your job is to go to school, help out at home, and enjoy this very important part of your life.
I think you should talk to your mom about your concerns and let her know how much you care. I also think you should talk to your father about what you have observed. It may help if you tell him that you miss him and appreciate what he does for the family but wish he could be home more often. If you think your mom is getting worse, it may be helpful to go to family counseling where you can bring up your concerns in a safe environment.
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts