magmarconis Asked October 2009

My siblings are upset that my mom is giving me money to take care of her. How can I cope with this issue?

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The issue is my three sisters are very upset that my Mom is giving me her S.S. Check of $1,480. per month for living with me.
She has lived with me now for 1 1/2 and I have done pretty much everything for her. Make Dr. appointments take her, fill her scripts and pick up, call her insurance company make her meals etc. No one was interested in doing anything for my Mom for a 1 1/2. Now they are "up in arms" and focusing on her money. I have mixed feelings, I feel very justified that what my Mom wanted to give me is okay and guilty becasue they no longer want to talk to me, feeling like I did something wrong. I have been very depressed about the whole issue. I always thought my family were my friends, but it appears just the opposite. Need some feed back please!

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195Austin Jan 2010
Tell you family 24/7 care here not including food or no help with meds and usually no transportation to docs is at least $1,500.00 a week and some aides are very lazy even from an agency so they are getting a bargin and if she was in a nursing home they would take all her money they use to get 50 dollars a month when on medicaide but if they still do the nursing home usually use it for clothes not for snacks or what the resident really wants my MIL had plenty of clothes and wanted Mc donalds once in a while and candy and such and the dietician had a fit we had to get her doc to say she could have comfort food brought into her.
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deefer12 Jan 2010
Quit my job almost 2 years ago to take care of Mom full time.Her 4 family house was just signed over to me.I'm in Mass. and there is a law allowing this because I live in the same house and am her caregiver. Although we are in separate apartments, we have a connecting door for easy access. The house cannot be taken away from me even if she goes into a nursing home. I have 6 siblings that the house was to be divided between, but the state could have taken it in the end. Now they can't and I don't have to worry about having my home taken away. Now I need to figure out what to charge Mom for room and board so that her money can continue to help pay for expenses, as I no longer have a job. Is there any formula for deciding what to charge an elderly parent for room and board? I would appreciate any suggestions. Thanks!
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I ditto the amens! Fabulous posts, ladies. You are all a blessing and an encouragement. Along the way, we learn to leave behind the guilt and shake the dust off our feet. Thanks for the good words of advice! :) Take heart in knowing that we serve with pure motives the best interests of our loved ones. When others complain, we can look at ourselves and them. If there is a discrepancy, why? Once we have satisfied our conscious, and know our loved one's needs are met, we've done the best we can, and don't have to cater to negative drama of others. We stand or fall on what we do, and our motives. Actions speak louder than words. Serve with joy, and be a blessing to someone along the way. Some won't get it, but the ones who do will thank you for it.
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toadballet1 Nov 2009
Magm: please do not feel guilty for one moment. ou owe them NO explanation. What we do as caregivers could never be repaid in dollars and cents. Just smile and invite them to take over any old time.
We can keep track of costs, but not all the time spent in-between the "big" things that we do for our parents. Not to mention lost time at work, having no social life to speak of, and the big one for me: advocating for my mother with doctors, hospitals, agencies, researching for her on the internet etc....exhausting and frustrating!
Ann: I could not agree more. There is nothing more humbling than walking around in someone else's shoes for awhile. The minute siblings complain tell them how nice it would be for you if they could take her for a month or two. Worked for my mom when her siblings were complaining. Now, here I am in the same boat.
There is another type of sibling that you have to watch out for and they may be the scariest type. They say nothing while you are busy taking care of your parent until the day they pass away. Then, there are all the questions about "where the money went." At least they are consistent; they used their parents while they were alive and now want to continue using them after death. And those of you who think, "my siblings would never do that." What the siblings don't think of, their spouses will.
I have so much on my plate right now, I hate that I have to do "bookkeeping" now in order to protect myself later. Meanwhile, my sibling was dipping into my Mom's accounts until I put an end to it.
I've said this before: Money is just dirty paper. What counts is how we treated others while we were on this earth, the friendships we formed, and how we treated our family members. I want to leave with a clear conscience.
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Annlidiot Nov 2009
I don't know where you gals live, but in a metropolitan region these days you can't even rent a single apartment for $1,400 a month. Keeping the records is a good idea, but I also suggest for your own peace of mind and a reality check you look at the seniors living below the poverty line reports online and print them out.

A nursing home is $75,000 a year - medi-caid picks all costs for people who have nothing. what is the world comming to? I am tired of hearing about family members who sit on their fannies and complain while one person does it all. Might be nice if some of them tried trading places for a week.
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Very important that your mom sign a letter wherein she states that she is giving you her ss check for the following reasons: XXX amount is for you for room and board and the remaining xxx is for you to use towards her everyday expenses (co-pays, otc meds, clothing, glasses, etc. etc. etc. etc.) She signs it in front of a notary. You give her a copy and you keep the original. As long as your mom doesn't have a separate entrance, her own kitchen and her own bathroom, you don't have to report that room and board as income. Secondly, keep every single receipt for money you spend on your mom (except for food, that's in the room and board amount) .... the government could come back on you someday a nd say what happened to your mom's ss checks .... and secondly, if your mom ever has to go to a nursing home, they look back five years to see how she spent her income .... she can onlyhave 1600.00 or less to her name before she can qualify for Medicaid (Medicaid is the government insurance plan for the indigent that covers nursing home care (not retirement or assisted living), just skilled nursing home care .... don't discuss money with your siblings, but instead, keep that letter and a running tally of how much money you have spent .... that, plus all you do that is priceless and dear for your mom will stand in any c ourt in the land if your siblings take you to court ... but please get that letter signed ... and also have your mother give you both medical power of attorney and durable, financial power of attorney .... very important ... there are legal forms on line you can use or go to legal aid in your town for almost free legal advice and assistance ..... you are blessed and are so dear ....
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txmaggie Oct 2009
Amen to both of the above comments!!!!!!! The only thing I would add is to think of those darned legal implications. Perhaps you and your mom should draw up a contract about the SSI money, just in case in becomes a bigger issue down the road. Do you have power of attorney for your mom? Are you able to handle her finances and/or medical issues should she become incapacitated? Just food for thought.....
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Annlidiot Oct 2009
Tell them it works out to $2.70 an hour based on an 18 hour day at 30 days per month. If you deduct for all of the direct expenses that go for your mom's exclusive benefit like meds it would be less than that.

Hand them a brochure from all of those companion agencies that charge between 15 - 20 an hour for tasks like "getting mail" and "remembering" and "phone answering" (seriously they actually list those items - as a bonus if you haven't laughed wait till you read nonmedical home agency marketing materials). Tell them any time they want to chip in to make up the difference you'd be pleased to accept it.

Then smile, shake off the comments and live your life. They may never get it, but if you and your mom are happy, to heck with them.
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idocare60 Oct 2009
I donot know of anyone who provides 24hr care for the elderly for $300 -$400 a week. I'm sure your siblings donot consider that you buy more food, use more utilities, pay for meds and use gasoline for trips here and there. If you are not aiding in personal and hygienic care you will eventually also be doing that also. Each hat you wear comes with a price, nurse, cook, housekeeper, laundress, business manager, health care surrogate, poa and chauffeur. Try paying each hat a monthly check out of $1480 per month. No one knows what it takes to care for an aging parent. Are any of your siblings helping you?
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