Can we force a frail abusive mom into a skilled nursing facility?

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Mom keeps trying to reverse decisions she and dad made to live in a very nice independent living apartment, so dad can have his meals catered, etc. while mom ws in the hospital. She is very frail and has an in-home nurse in the apartment 11-13 hours each day. My sister and I have set up a living trust, with their credit union and an attorney as financial POAs, specifically to avoid any misunderstanding between our parents and their estate. Regardless, mom has become very paranoid that dad is spending their money fooliishly on himself and we daughters, and is denying dad minor purchases, and complsining to her nurse that they can't afford her per their contract. She is constantly waking up at night demanding thair financial papers, and cursing us and her nurse, telling us that she wishes dad would just die and leave her their money.

Mom and dat have enough money to live on for quite a long time, which was shown to them using a financial plan calculated by their credit union. Her nurse keeps calling in tears, as she is getting the full force of her abuse, and is afraid for my dad. The facility has a skilled nursing facility, but they don't want her to return due to her behavior during her last stay.

Is there any way we can declare her incompetent due to her irrational behavior? She is very manipulative, and could probablyfool people into feeling sorry for her.She has done so before, never desitating to lie and cry on demand..

Question: Incompetent and irrationl,or just plain old mean?

Answers 1 to 10 of 10
Top Answer
I worry when people are black-and-white about stuff like "drugging," as if one could simply decide on principle that therapy is ok and meds are not. Paranoia can come from a bunch of possible sources; it sounds like there are old mental health issues here but also some new ones and certainly a new degree, so something is up in your mom's brain. Waking up at night and so terribly afraid, she's not very happy herself, is she!? As for you, no wonder you want some relief; this situation isn't working. Nursing Homes are a business, and here they are turning down a client -- so that says something about how bad it is. So try to think in terms of everybody having a problem: you, the nurse, your dad, any potential professional facility, AND your mom. Everybody in this story has one thing in common: they all, including your mom, need some professional evaluation of what's going on with her. (Getting someone declared incompetent is possible but very difficult; and it may make it possible for you to get her out of the house but doesn't guarantee where else she can go. In any case, the first steps in that direction would involve getting professional evaluations of your mom anyway, so start there.) Ask your or her doctor, and your local depts on eldercare/aging to find who should be looking at your mom's physical and mental health. Faulty brain chemistry can be hell for the person; skillful interactions can make a big difference (read a book called Talking to Alzheimers, whether you think she has Alzheimers or not), but just talk therapy may not hit the spot.
People who SAY what they would do IF their loved one was still around are clueless. You ONLY know what you would do when it is REALITY. When you are ACTUALLY dealing with the issue.

From experience I can only say you must do what you believe is RIGHT, if not what is BEST for your circumstance. Pray for wisdom, search, wait then apply whatever God has brought to you. And it will probably be more than one solution. That way whatever choice you make with the options given to you, you will not be wrong.
Kristine2012, did you carefully read the originl post? This is not about parents who don't have enough money and need their children to contribute to the "POT." The parents have plenty of money, and it is being overseen for them by an objective outsider. The parents have cognitive impairments and don't understand their financial situation. How on earth does that translate to neglect or abuse?? Have you ever dealt with a loved one who was cognitively impaired? Have you lived with someone with paranoia? Dementia? Do you have any first-hand experience with what merc55 is dealing with? I'm sorry that your mother died when you were young but that doesn't make you an expert on how to handle mentally impaired parents.
Kristine 2012, are you new to this site? If so, it is important to understand that we are all here to support each other and make suggestions based on our OWN experiences. From what you have said, you unfortunately appear to have little, if any, experience with elderly parents so I am unsure of the basis of your comments to merc55. Also, on this site we do not judge the actions of others, especially since it appears that you may have have misread the original post.

However, we would love it if you kept coming back to learn from those of us who walk a mile in similar shoes every hour of every day. We would be very grateful for the benefit of your suggestions on topics that fit in with YOUR life experiences.
Kristine2012: I am sorry your Mother died when you were so young. I had a very loving Mother who would have fought a bear to protect any one of her kids. But age can sometimes change them into different people. My Mother is now 96 and she has accused us of stealing from her, throwing her out of her home and selling it, and getting rid of all her "stuff". We would never steal from her, She fell, had hip surgery and could no longer live alone so she came to live with me. She pays the electric bill--less than $200. a month and I pay just about everything else. She has a large SS income but it is accumulating in the bank because she is afraid she will not have enough money to last her the rest of her life. It would be funny is I didn't have to stretch my money to take care of her. So you never know what life is going to be like down the road. Some people get mean or contrary as they age and some siblings turn out to be dishonest and greedy. I guess what I am trying to say is don't judge unless you know all the facts in a situation.
Ill tell you for sure some of the people havent dealt with this problem 24-7 they would sing a different song
To Kristine2012: The scenario you paint for others is quite quaint. I have given my mother a buttload of money and her behavior towards me got even worse after that. Fact is, you do not know how you'd feel about your mother at this point. This isn't Disneyland, it's the real world with real people trying to cope and if you haven't experienced the problems firsthand, you're just a bullying voice.
What isn't mentioned here is what Mom's personality type has always been. Has she always been somewhat manipulative and demanding, histrionic or ordinarily suspicious/skeptical, and what you're seeing is really an exacerbation of old traits? Or has she been a kind, considerate person in her lifetime, and this is a real personality change? Answering 'yes' to either or both of these, but especially to the latter, indicates a cognitive impairment or early dementia, in which case a geriatric psychiatrist (or even Mom's PCP, if they are comfortable with their level of proficiency in the area) could determine that your Mom lacks capacity, thus a court hearing to determine competence could ensue. This is, however, expensive. And if Mom 'presents well,' it may very well not go in your favor, giving Mom more ammunition to use against the family. Have you or the tearful nurse contacted Elder
Services to report your Dad as an 'elder at risk?' Elder Services may be able to take some of the burden off you and your family. Best wishes on this difficult dilemma.
One more thing I wanted to add. Please check your mom's meds. Many times these meds can dramatically change a person's behavior especially elderly people. Doctors love to tell us how safe some drugs are for our elderly parents YET the clinical trials on these drugs are usually done on much younger people and doctors use this information to apply it to older people which is very scary for older people because they tend to be affected a lot more by the side effect of those drugs. So please check what the adverse effects of any meds your mom is taking and if you don't understand anything ask the pharmacist to explain and re-explain until you understand it. Never assume that the drugs she is taking are safe.
The skilled nursing facility might end up drugging your mom if your mom becomes difficult for them. Why ever would you want to do that? Your mom might need some psychological therapy. Perhaps you folks might want to schedule a therapist to come to their apt. to see her. Also the only person who can force your mom into a facility is the person who has the POA/health care directive over your mom. Would that be the attorney? if so, then you need to talk to the attorney about your mom's situation. If you don't want the attorney in charge of your mom's health, then ask your mom to switch the POA to both of you.

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