What can I do if my elder brother is trying to dominate the discussion about Power of Attorney for my parents?
Our 80's parents live in their own home and have diminishing health. My brother lives 650 miles away, and sees them a week or two out of the year. I live 250 miles away and see them every 2-3 or 4 weekends depending upon the current need.
Its time to put POA in place, and I talked with my parents about this on the last trip. They agreed that it could/should be between my brother and myself (not the remaining 3 sibs). My parents told me to discuss it with my brother and decide how we want to handle it and they would agree.
I called my brother to let him know of the situation and suggested that he become POA for Finance and I become POA for Health. It is my intention to start attending their important doctor visits as backup. Brother's response is to postpone any movement on the subject until he can speak with my parents face to face which is another month or two. He claims that as executor of their estate, he will be POA for Finance, but will not discuss my being POA for Health.
It is better to get POA in place sooner rather than later because my mother needs the care of a Neurologist and as soon as she goes there, she and my dad could both be diagnosed with dementia. Dad is her primary care giver, hence the possible complications from all this.
I have approached this topic wanting to collaborate with my brother, to come up with a plan for caregiving and to start assuming more legal responsibilities, along with on-the-ground responsibilities.
His response to me is to be rude, dismissive, domineering, bullying, and insulting. He talks over me, he dismisses my input, he lectures me, he talks down to me, he ignores any ongoing discussions he hasn't been involved in, he is deciding to do what he thinks is best on his own with no sense of collaboration, he refuses to have an open discussion, he refuses to express his real motives and he accuses me of pressuring him.
If I start a conversation, he interrupts me and starts explaining things to me that I already know and starts giving me direction. When I finally get a word in to give him information, or tell what is already occuring or what has already been discussed, it seems to inflame him beyond reason.
He does not understand or respect that I have been a part-time caregiver to our parents for the past 3 years.
i believe that his world view demands that he drive the ship, and that everyone else is his inferior and underling. He is a high placed administrator in health care for elderly, and the elder brother.
My world view is that birth order, age and gender are irrelevant. Its down to who is capable and motivated to take tangible responsibility for our parents. That we should collaborate in a loving way that makes it easy and comfortable and safe for my parents, and that there is no need for contension. I am a professional in a position of responsibility and have lead a stable, interesting life. I am financially, emotionally and intellectually capable of taking care of our parents, and my husband supports my effort fully.
I have let him and his ego and rudeness go for years, but now its getting in the way of something that I really, really care about, and I am not going to back down. I am not going to be treated in this way, or to be edged out or dismissed as a helping hand who isn't capable of holding real responsibility.
I am letting him stew in his own juices for now, but I am so hurt and insulted by his behavior that I can think of little else.
My question is this. Can anyone give insight into why he is behaving in this way or how to handle it?
Many thanks in advance.