I'm haunted about a distant relative who took control of my elderly mom and stepfather's lives. I fear that she manipulated them. They had complete trust in this woman who's an opiate addict. Every time I went to visit my mother, this relative, who lived in an apartment upstairs, was there or came down. She didn't try to contact me to let me know that my mother was ill and starving herself to death, and she didn't try to get my mother help.
When I got the Department of Aging involved, and my mother was finally taken to the hospital, I witnessed this relative's cruelty to my stepfather, 81, twice when she was angry that my son and I were taking him to pay bills. Once she told him that she wasn't going to feed him after my mom died.
On the one day that I wasn't at the hospital due to a snow storm, the hospital sent my mother home via an ambulance with this relative, (because her Medicare benefits had run out), and this relative managed to get my dying mother brought to her apartment.
Again, she was in complete control not only of my mom, but also my stepfather who slept on a futon in her one room apartment.
At first I thought she wanted control of my mom in order to get the morphine that hospice supplied. But I realized that she also wanted my mom's belongings as she, along with her son, were going through my mother's things and taking whatever they wanted.
My mom was something of a hoarder and not only had an apartment full of stuff, but also a rental house and several storage units. I was shocked when, a few days before my mother died, I saw the mat on this relative's kitchen floor that I'd given my mom for Christmas a few weeks earlier.
She and her son were also managing my stepfather's finances.
My mom died on January 19, and this relative is still in control as my stepfather, whom doctors at the hospital deemed to be mentally incompetent, is still living with her. She wouldn't even let us pick him up to take him to the funeral home to sign the papers for my mom's cremation (which, I paid for). She insisted on taking him as if she didn't want us to get him alone. I think she intends to financially exploit him.
She's still going through my mom's things. By Missouri law, when one dies without a will, 50% of the estate goes to the spouse and the rest to the deceased's offspring. I don't really want my mother's junk, but I want photos and there may be some memento I'd want--perhaps some jewelry. There has been zero consideration for me in this matter. No one has even asked me if I might want something of my mom's.
I'm also worried that she's financially exploiting my stepfather. As I'm not his next of kin, there's nothing I can do about it. Me and other family members reported our concerns to the Department of Aging, but they said they could do nothing without proof.
This situation tortured me through the weeks that my mom was ill and it still does now, but I feel powerless. I don't know what I can possibly do.