Having to defend onself against family or others.

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I went to visit mom in '07 in So CA. I did this often as my profession required that I only work approximately 12-14 days per mo. Most often, I would tell my parents I was coming for a visit and they would pass the information to my sister.

Dad died in '93 but mom continued to tell sister when I planned a visit. I assumed mom would tell sister when I planned to visit in Oct 07. I arrived late evening after a long drive. No one is permitted to call sisters home after 9 p.m.

Upon arrival mom showed me her stomach. Months prior we knew mom had a hernia. When I saw mom she looked 4 or 5 mo pregnant. I was scared to death.

Papers were strewn everywhere, unpaid bills, bill that were paid twice, collection letters and more. Not one piece of food in the house except for jar of mayonaise expired in the fridge.

The following morning mom had a list of things for us to do which was typical. I spent many days at multiple malls with mom when I visited, along with a stop at Starbucks etc. On this occasion she also wanted to go to her bank as her local branch had closed. Mom stated she wanted to close her account. I knew all of her retirement checks and SS check was deposited into the account and I explained to her that until we changed that she would not be able to close account. She persisted nevertheless.

I always went to the bank with mom when I visisted typically because she wanted to obtain some cash for coffee's lunch. Sometimes I waited in the car, sometimes I went in. When I stayed with my father in 89 for over 30 days (family leave act) because my mom was in the hospital as she had a cerebral hemmorage. Dad and I went to the bank everyday. The trips weren't necessary but he wanted to go frequently anyway. I paid all of my parents bills while mom was hospitalized as dad did not know how to write checks.

Post mom's thyroid surgery and nissen fundoplication surgery wherein I was nursemaid for 30 days or more (family leave act again) I had to pay bills again and do mom's banking. In the first few recovery days she would not go with me as she didn't feel up to it. I did all of her grocery shopping and to pay for the items she provided me with her atm card. Occcasionally, I would buy some food items that I liked but it was minimal. During one surgery I used her atm card to purchase a blender as mom's food had to slide now the esophagas so I had to puree/liquify foods.

In 07 mom and I ended up at her bank for the reason stated above. We were sitting at a table with a bank representative. There were no papers or monies on the table. Brother in law walked in and the air grew thick. We said hi but he was not joyed by seeing me./us. He left.

When mom wore me out for the day, we returned to her place. Like always I called my sister to say hi, which usually involved arranging when I would get together with her. This time was different as I needed to tell her about mom's stomach and disarray in mom's home.

Sister laid into me, ranted and raved and accused me of sneaking into town and taking mom;s money. She would not let up. Nothing I said was being heard. I was tired from having just driven 12 hours (and prior to the drive I had worked all week). Mom's stomach situation was not normal so I gave up arguing with sister and simply stated I am taking mom home (No. Ca) with me. She threatened nothing better happen to her.

My sister was so loud and so mean that I was crying...(sister didn't know I was crying) which made my mom cry. Mom was early mid stage Alzheimer's I know in retrospect now...the incident was very upsetting for mom who was never a cryer.

It's been 6 years now and it has gone from bad in 07 to worse. The stomach was mom's intestines. Surgeron urged quick surgery as he did not know if he could put the intestines back in mom's body cavity (that's how large the stomach was). I offered to return mom home for surgery. Sister would not respond to my email so as suggested, mom and I proceed to get me POA (so I could make medical decisions since she would be here with me for the surgery). Once that was in place mom had the surgery.

Naturally, mom wanted to go home. Multiple emails were sent to try to work that out with sister. I had to have some help from sister as it was apparant mom should not be living alone unless and until....no responses to my emails except for more blame).

In a final email my sister asserted "you have POA you figure it out" (where mom should live.

A final email from sister said "do not contact me again."

I contacted sister one more time vi a phone. Brother in law got on the line and expected me to drive to So CA immediately to put their names on mom's bank account. When I said I would do so but couldnt do so this week (did I mention I had a full time job?) he hung up on me.

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I think siblings start making accusations because they resent that they were not chosen as the POA . They are angry and jealous because they probably see it as favoritism toward their sibling who was named as POA. Sibling rivalry at its best.
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Correction to my post (omitted the k) mom had 5K more in her account than she had when she arrived.
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Tidbit: going through some of mom's papers and came across one police report that was done one time shortly after mom came to stay with me..she had walked to a nearby drugstore...in short the police returned mom to me. I was interrogated. Police officer wanted all of my mother's bank statements...Its funny now...the report reads in short that mom arrived on XXXX date with XXX dollars in her account...XXXX months later the report states, the account had XXX more than when she first arrived! yes. mom had 5 more a month or two after arrival....I guess this is some proof of some kind that I was not taking money. Mom was actually saving money because I was paying all utilities (my home), all of her utilities had been shut off, including but not limited to her phone, auto insurance etc etc...what can I say?
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Thank u for the responses because I don't feel so alone. Each of you represents a family of strangers but all of you have big hearts I know (only a person with a big heart would support a stranger like myself in their personal struggle(s).
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momhouseme - I so so sympathize with you in dealing with sibling troubles. I had a similar situation wherein my brother-in-law, his wife and daughter (my husband's brother) did not help my mother-in-law with anything for 6 years. They barely visited her, and when we moved her in with us because she needed more care, they came even less. When we had to finally move her into an Assisted Living facility, they didn't visit her one time. I texted them every time there was something major or she was sent to the hospital, which was numerous. They got to where they never answered back. She hadn't seen them in two years when she was placed on hospice. I texted them anyway, and even gave doubt that maybe they had changed cell phone numbers - so I asked a nephew that still had contact with them call them and ask him to call his brother. He still didn't call. They snuck up and came to see her in the hospice hospital, but she was too far gone really to appreciate it. She passed, and we planned the funeral and everything ourselves and texted them the date/time. Still no answer. They showed up at the funeral - didn't speak to us - and left, slamming the door as they were leaving. I guess that was supposed to bother us - it didn't. Like you are doing, I did what was right by my mother-in-law and I really tried to do what was right by my in-laws. But now that she is gone, I never want to see them again. And if they try to make any contact, we will not have any. Enough is enough. So hang in there and know you're not alone. ((HUGS))
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My sister and I were co-executors of our parents' estate, but after a major conflict almost ten years ago I told my parents I no longer wanted that responsibility. I suggested they make my son and my sister's oldest son co-executors of their estate. The cousins get along well and are sensible men. And my parents don't have an accumulation of wealth anyway. They have their home, vehicle, etc., but nothing of major value (anymore) that would likely lead to a fight over who gets it. The only really valuable thing that needed to be sorted out (in my opinion) were the diamonds from my maternal grandmother's wedding ring. I told my mom for years she really needed to have a plan about who would get the diamonds when she passes. A couple of years ago she asked me what I thought she should do with them. I told her to give them (now in a pendant) to my sister BECAUSE my sister will take good care of it, she wears diamond jewelry and I don't, and she has a (wonderful) DIL and granddaughter to whom the jewelry can be passed when she (my sister) kicks the bucket. Problem solved. My mother gave my oldest niece my paternal grandmother's wedding ring--a large Ruby surrounded by diamonds on a wide yellow gold band (which she never wears).

My parents have a reverse mortgage, so when both of them are gone we will sell their home and no one gets any money from that (except the bank). Problem solved. Plus my parents were able to have some fun with the reverse mortgage money until my father's health got so bad.

I've told my mother I would like to have her wedding rings when she is gone. Not being a fan of diamonds or yellow gold, I will probably give her engagement ring to my niece-in-law and her wedding ring to my other niece.

They've lived in their home for almost 62 years, so they've accumulated a lot of STUFF--nice furniture, etc. But we'll deal with that in an estate sale and split that however my parents have indicated in their will.
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WOW.

I think a guilty conscience triggers this response from siblings. They get defensive and start accusing the caregiving sib of all kinds of crap to divert attention from the real issue(s).

Stand your ground. Be assertive and proactive. Sounds like you have been already, so just keep doing what you're doing.
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momhouseme~You are doing all the right things. You are setting healthy boundaries between you and your sister/bil, detaching with love allows you to see things logically instead of all the emotional entanglements of wanting to preserve a relationship on their terms, you are doing that too. Your sister and bil will probably only start up with you if you contact them...having your mother's attorney notify them of all things you want them to be aware of is an excellent idea. They aren't going to argue with an attorney, make accusations and if they call you after they have been notified of something, get caller ID so you can choose whether to answer the phone or not and they can choose whether to leave a message. You can also ask your mother's attorney to include in his/her letter to them that all communication between you and sister is to be done through the attorney. I know how you feel in regards to notifying your sister, I have a brother who, by his choice, is estranged from the family. When my mother passes, if I have my way with my siblings, I would like to send him by mail, a copy of the announcement that is put in the paper. He didn't let us know about his son's passing until the day of the funeral. He lives out of state so we would never have known. You are doing great with your mom!! Many Hugs to you!!
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momhouseme,

"Mom can't even say the word POA." LOL

You made me smile....thank you. :-)
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My sister hasn't spoke to us since 07; i will never add her to poa and my mom, although happy and smiling and talking jibberish all of the time would never be lucid enough to change poa; mom can't even say the word poa...my mom no longer can write...we are safe in that regard...she doens't talk to us so i don't have to avoid her but if she were to attempt to reconnect i would not....i only need to be burned once to know to stay away. ....even tho sister told me to never contact her again, and later the bil hung up on me, I will still notify of mom's death from the notification will come from a friend, mom's attorney or other ---my mother's funeral is arranged and I have been writing down the personal touches that I want....she has been with me 6 years and I will have my own funeral for her...I will not have my sister be a witness to my grief. Sister, should she chose to can contact me and I will direct her to arrange her own arrangements for her and her famil but she most definately will not be a part of anything I do. At the gravesite I intend to also be alone...I banged my head against the wall at the beginning but no more. Thanks for all of your advice.
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