I just found out my mother does not have a Living Will nor a Health Care Proxy.

Follow
Share

Nothing. All she has is a financial POA. She is 82. She believes my brother and I can just make decisions for her. Like she did 15 years ago for her father. I don't know what to say to her to get her to see the importance of having this. Any suggestions from those who have had to deal with this sort of thing before would be appreciated. She is like pushing a rope up hill..............

This discussion has been closed for comment. Start a New Discussion.
15

Comments

Show:
Madge, everything is about them, and they play games to get attention.,They also are very good at getting you to feel sorry for them, and then they use it. Be aware of that. I don't take that kind of bait any more. You are 100% corerct that no good deed goes unpunished.My dad, when he was failing called me in tears one day and asked if I would come for a visit. We found out later that he was in the early stages of vascular dementia, I arranged to have someone look after my 3 kids and travelled across Canada to stay with them for a short while. Mother was working at the time, thank goodness, so I had day time free with my dad. It was obvious to me that he was not himself and much less capable that he had been. They had plans to build a house and mother was ranting at him to get going. When she came home in the evenings i took her out for walks to give him some peace and she raged, and raged, and raged about him. Finally I made some suggestions to her - to sell the land they had as he would never be able to build, to buy a house with their savings which would be a good investment and a nice home, to let his car, which needed repair, to sit in the driveway as he was not safe to driive it anyway, and buy her own car and keep the keys in a safe place away from him. She did all of that, and they were good moves for both of them and he lived at home quite a few more years. However, during one phone call not long after I returned and she had started making those changes, she criticized me and said, "Don't think you have been of any help to me," As you say - you get blamed even when it works out well for them.

I have realized that any time I start to feel sorry for my mother, or anyone, not to act on that, as it never works out well. To act out of true concern is one thing, to act because you are feeling sorry for someone is another, and less healthy in my view, and experience. Narcissists are very adept arousing pity in ordeer to to manipulate. Hey you are learning, Madge!!!. your husband sounds like a good support for you. His radar is well tuned. (((((hugs)))))
(3)
Report

dw -so glad you are not paying $$$ for your parent's care. I hear you about the lots and lots of time - in fact, too much time, in my estimation. Can you see your way to giving yourself and your immediate family more of your own time, which would mean cutting back on what you give your parents. On another thread someone mentioned not being so available. When I examined my life, I realised that I was cutting myself short in terms of looking after my health, getting to know my grandchildren etc. in order to be at my mother's beck and call - so I stopped, and started putting myself first. I will address serious issues and a few not so serious, as I choose, but others do her shopping, and look after various things, and she pays them to, and I have my own life.It is a much healthier balance, (((((((hugs)))))
(2)
Report

Elaine, thank you for a wonderful answer and getting me back on track. My mother will not go to church, so no pastor to talk to. She has the Living Will and Health Care Proxy at home, right now. It just has't been signed or notarized. She knows and I know about the living will at the hospitals, nursing homes, etc. But the problem is "if" she is able to sign them. Like with your father, things happen and people are not able to sign the forms, then it is too late. Her neighbor is a lawyer and has been just an angel to mom. Mom loved her until I mentioned getting her to talk to mom about the papers she needs. Now seems neighbor is an "ambulance chaser". This lawyer worked for the US government and now in retirement does pro bono work. Geezzzzzzzzzzzzz

I really appreciate the information you have given me. I have explained to mom many times that the only things I want is to be able to care for her in case she can no longer do so. As I discussed with Emjo, mom has many issues that are preventing normal discussion and decision making. I feel she may have the beginnnings of dementia as well. Time will tell. You are very kind to respond.
(1)
Report

Emjo, Just to clarify, I am not paying for anything for my parents. They pay for everything themselves. They just haven't done anything to protect the money that my father earned through stocks in a company he worked for for over thirty years. So they have money and pay their own way -- when I said four households, I meant, my son, my daughter, our house and my husband's office. I guess I wasn't very clear. All I am giving them right now is TIME, LOTS AND LOTS OF TIME.
(0)
Report

Back to subject of your mom not having a living will, health care proxy, etc. If she won't listen to you regarding getting these things, maybe your minister could discuss this with her. If at any point she goes to a hospital, they have these forms and you could ask the social worker to discuss the subject with her. I've seen that occur in many instances and then you're not the "bad guy" so to speak. Also check out some local Council on Aging organizations. They usually have these forms, in fact many times they have free seminars regarding the importance of having these forms in place. They are basic forms and just need to be notarized and witnessed by 2 people. If you take her to the bank, they have notaries. You can even download these forms online. Maybe just getting the papers and giving them to her very casually, she will see that it isn't that complicated and will sign them. My mom very willingly (thank God) agreed to fill out all the papers. She did not initially have a DNR - even though she kept saying she didn't want to be resuscitated. When she went into the hospital for a minor illness, the nurse asked if she had one - to which I replied "no" and kinda gritted my teeth. I said I know they're her wishes and the nurse finished the sentence and said "but it's hard to discuss it, right?" I said yes and she said "lets go in her room together and I (the nurse) will bring it up". We did and she explained it to mom who gladly signed the forms - mom said she didn't think that a form was needed - that her wishes were "known" by me. Anyway the form was signed. But I will tell you this - I found out with a DNR it is NOT ALWAYS the SAME form used in each facility and that matters! Same info but each facility has their OWN form! So when she went into rehab after the hospital she had to sign ANOTHER as the one from the hospital was not good. And when she went to another hospital a few years later, neither of those forms were valid - she had to sign one of their forms. So just check on that - State laws many differ. My dad who passed away in 1997 at the age of 79 did not have any of these forms - which I couldn't understand cause dad was the organized, everything up to date kind of guy. Anyway, he was rushed to the hospital, lost a lot of blood and went into a coma. They had to do surgery which was successful but he never came out of a coma. He coded 5 times over the next 2 days before he passed, and each time the doctors asked if they should continue (cause there was no hope), mom didn't want to answer and I couldn't tell them to stop all life saving measures including DNR. Why? Because even though Dad TOLD us many years before that he didn't want to live like that, I didn't have a piece of paper with his signature on it specifying it. I told the doctors, it wasn't up to me but up to God when to take him, so each time he coded they were to do whatever they could. And it was only because I didn't have his signature on a paper - I could not tell them to stop life saving measures. I then made sure mom had her papers in order (minus the DNR initially). Mom fell at almost age 89 and broke her hip and it was one complication after another but she beat them all - numerous trips to the hospital during her rehab stay of 4 months, then one month in assisted living. Then went to ER and they found out she had a hole in her colon and all the stomach poisons had entered all her other organs. She needed an operation to do a colostomy which the surgeons didn't think she would survive and she would have to wait 12 hours for surgery without much pain meds - as she couldn't go into surgery full of pain meds and they had to wait cause she was on blood thinners. They also felt she would have major complications even if she survived the surgery. They sedated her a little - she was out of it though cause they said the poisons were working fast on her body & mind - and she was still screaming even though she was not able to talk or understand anything at that point. I'm an only child and the doctor asked me what to do - before I answered both doctors held up the living will, DNR and health care surrogate papers and said if it helps you decide she has all this in place so don't feel guilty, you're just carrying out her wishes and she designated you. Yes, that made my decision easy, unlike dad who didn't have signatures on those papers. She was brought to hospice and lasted four more days - she never knew what was going on however; but like I said before, it was an easy decision for me because I had those papers. Hope this helps a little. Good luck!
(2)
Report

Emjo, I just realized today is my mother and father's anniversary. I guess she was feeling a little sad over that. She hated him when he was alive but now he was "her old goat" she likes to say. But emjo I think you are exactly right about how they behave. Everything is about them.

This is how the crazy making starts. I talked to mom last Friday. She has a small deck at the back door, my brother built it so she would not fall trying to get the back door open. She hates it, told me she wanted it removed and was going to call the shady carpenter down the street to take it out. I call my brother, since he built it, and told him she doesn't want it anymore. He flips out. Said it is going to stay and it is for her safety. And she is not calling the carpenter down the street. I asked him to just talk to her gently and remove it if it bothered her. No, he called her and got snarky with her and the deck will stay.

I asked her if she had heard from my brother and she told me the entire story. She was hurt he was rude to her (however he is rude to me often and that does't bother her). But the crazy thing is, she told me she was "just kidding" about having the deck removed and would have never called the "shady" carpenter. Then the conversation went to my brother's behavior, which I should accept, and how Dad wasn't so bad (he was horrible).

So as my dear husband always says, "no good deed goes unpunished." My husband said to me, "In the end you will some how get blamed." Damn, I am a slow learner.
(3)
Report

austin and madge - mother used to call my father down all the time - daily - and yet since he is gone, no complaints, and very selective memories. I think it is what serves her purposes, not that she has forgotten.
(3)
Report

((((((madge)))) it is an ongoing saga. Disassociation maybe your best route, I have broken contact for extended periods of time. Sounds like your brother is narcissistic too. It is NOT your job to make her happy, yet she will continue to see it that way because of the narcissism. Dear one, do what you have to do to protect yourself. What I have observed with my mother, that whether or not I am involved with her life, really makes no great difference to her, other than as grist for her mill - another person to ask things of, to spew her anger at over the latest perceived insult etc. I suppose there are some real feelings for me in there somewhere, but they take back seat to her narcissism and BPD. Truly, I don't think she would be greatly upset if I cut contact altogether, other than she would not have me as someone to rely on for certain things, It is not easy, nor nice to face this about a parent, but I find it is better for me to accept the truth, so then I can deal with it. ((((((hugs))))))
(2)
Report

My aunt said to us when we started visiting her regurly what a great husband my uncle was I almost fell off my chair and wanted to say were you married also to some one else and my Mom also has memories that I never saw-my sister says they are rewriting history-I think a lot of elders do that-my husband did that with his grandfather and he was not that old at the time-I do not know if they really do not remember how things were or tell it like they wished it had been.
(2)
Report

Hi Emjo, glad you responded to my post. I know your story and I am sure you know mine by now. An ongoing saga. I was better with Mom but just had a phone call that was not good. I think I will have to disassociate completely with Mom.

Getting her to make the proper POAs and Living wills, etc. are just the tip of the iceberg with her. My brother is like my father in some ways. Verbally snarky when he feels like it. No boundaries as to how to talk to you.

I mentioned to my Mom how my brother is somewhat like dad in the way he talks "down" to me and snaps at me when he doesn't want to be bothered. Just like Dad.

My Dad was verbally abusive to us, especially me. Mom loved to sit and talk about all the carzy crap he did. Especially to her. She never took responsibility for what he did to me. Just her.

Today I mentioned how my husband was told before we married what a nasty guy my dad was. My friends told him all of this. Mom wanted to know how they knew. I told them, I said, they were my friends. She turned on me asking just what he ever did, and he wasn't so bad. She didn't want me talking about her husband like that. Now you have to realize she talked about his bad behavior my ENTIRE life. But only how it affected her.

When I told her to please not take up for him (and this was the first time ever), because she knew what he was like, she told me, "all I really want you to do is have a happy life and call me and TRY and cheer me up." I told her it was not my job to make her happy.

I have forgiven her about many lies, stories and insults. I have forgiven her over slights and favoritism toward my brother. But this is just too much.
(2)
Report

This discussion has been closed for comment. Start a New Discussion.
Related
Questions