I'm dealing with so many issues concerning my disabled spouse. It ranges from feeling guilty, depression over our situation to anxiety about not being able to pay the bills because every dollar we have coming in is going to assisted living. I honestly don't know what to do first. I'm picking a 'topic' but so many apply. I just want to hear from others who are managing life in a hurricane of emotions and financial despair. I'm not clinical, but I am confused. I really don't have the funds to hire an attorney although that is really what I should do. Ug. I'll be selling our home to get the extra money, but then where will I live? Sorry. I'll take a deep breath and move on. But every day that goes by is another day of angst.

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I know zero about VA assistance, etc.
What I do know is how I feel knowing that my mom and husband are way older than I am, and I will be facing big time issues with loneliness, grief, decisions, no relatives to lean on..... and I am scared.
I have friends that would / will / might help me then.
I have a strong faith and solid beliefs. My spirituality will keep me afloat. But, fear of the unknown lurks in the background.
We're only human beings with obvious frailties.
Others here in forum have experience with financial affairs, so I am sure you're going to have some good advice.

Can you and hubby live together in the assisted living community, financing that with the house?
Can you receive the Veteran's Aid and Attendance benefits ( Home care money)
and possibly bring him back home, with caregivers coming in?
All these things can be figured out with a little more information, we can help.

Many of us are living your dilemma. I am for saving your home, and have read on AC the many ways that can be accomplished. Are you in a community property state?
One way, as you know, to handle your finances, is to INCREASE YOUR INCOME.
Can you get your house in order and rent out a room?

If you are overwhelmed, like me, it is harder to go for professional help because then you are assigned many more things to do, and you just feel like giving up because you are already overwhelmed.

Practice getting dressed early each day, as if you are going to work, but your life is the job you are going to save.

You too are deserving of help,,I'm sure. Keep coming back.

Answer only as you are able. I know some more really great people who will stop by soon, and offer advice, comfort, love and support to you.

Everyday, TMI, too many issues, too many priorities...."too many" and "too much" often characterize many aspects of caregiving.

Make sure you take time for yourself daily to just sit down and let your mind wander to something pleasant, then reconsider the caregiving issues. And do prioritize them - not everything can or needs to be dealt with now.

And don't hesitate to post again.

Best wishes - these are not easy journeys that we travel, regardless of our individual situations.

Thank you all SO much for the advice. GardenArtist, I appreciate all of the resources you listed. I appreciate all of the time it took to respond to my dilemma. I wish I could go into more detail but it just seems like TMI to burden others with. I am thankful for the guidance. Hugs to all.

There is great advice above. BEFORE I sold the house or any thing of value, I would confirm the rules on Medicaid requirements. Some property is exempt, but when it's turned to cash, it counts against you. Find out the rules before making your decisions. There are many resources to check out.

There are some free resources available for legal help if you qualify. Check on-line in your area for Senior Legal Help, Community legal services, free senior legal or contact the American Legion for recommendations. Also, if your husband is a veteran he may be eligible for Aid and Attendence. I would also look into Government assistance to help with food and housing. My heart goes out to you and I hope you find some help.

Speaking only to the issue of financial despair....I just watched part of a PBS program on the growing poverty in suburbia, and the number of people who are relying on food assistance.

Do some research to:

(a) Find local food pantries and see what their qualifications for assistance are. Just getting some free food will help ease the financial crunch.

(b) Research Ohio's state website to see if there are any elder agencies. Michigan has an Elder Law of Michigan division which acts as a clearing house for advice on legal issues, food availability and other services for income qualified seniors. I've gotten very good legal advice through this service.

If Ohio does have a similar program, it might help alleviate the need for paid legal service.

(c) Ask also about assistance with bills. There are various local and federal programs providing assistance with energy needs, weatherization, etc.

(d) Contact you local Area Agency on Aging, or inter-county agency, to also find out about any programs that might provide home assistance, whether it's retrofitting, weatherization, etc.

(c) If your house needs repair, you can also contact Habitat for Humanity, the VA (see below), Christmas in April, or other local agencies. The city in which I live used to get HUD grants to help income qualified people with emergency repairs.

(d) Contact local law schools to see if they offer legal clinics and pro bono advice. It probably wouldn't be at the level of a skilled practitioner, but you might be able to get some free legal advice that will at least give you a foundation in what services are available and what steps to take next.

(e) I believe I read in another of your posts that your husband is a veteran. Pursue that angle to see what assistance you can get through the VA. I just received another VA e-letter addressing assistance for home loans, and assistance to veterans who are severely disabled. I'd pursue the issue to find out what qualifies as "severely disabled."

If you can't get to this link, Google "VA, home-loans-and-housing/adaptive-home-and-vehicle". Check the first and third hits that aren't ads.

The first provides insight into what might be available:

"Veterans with certain service-connected disabilities may apply for grants to build an adapted home or install ramps, widen doors, or make other modifications to live more independently. "

Before taking steps to sell your home, and worry about where you'll live, see how much the VA can help you.

(f) I don't know if the VA has support groups, but I'd check that out.

You can't afford not to hire an attorney. Sorry. It is tough and I understand the reluctance to shell out the money for that service, but the ins and outs are so complicated you really need help.

I like Pam's suggestion for starters, though. See what services you can find through the AL facility.

This should be bumped back up. Everyday, if you could supply more details, ages, Medicare or Medicaid eligibility, type of disabilities etc there are many folks here in similar situations that may comment.

Ask the Assisted Living to refer you to a benefits counselor. Ours was able to assist with VA Aid and Attendance forms, no charge. They can also advise on Medicaid waiver programs, also known as HCBS (home and community based services). If you can get Medicaid waiver, your best bet is to stay in the home.

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