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Mom had her shower this morning by the great CNA I love. I made her waffles and Carnation Instant Breakfast. My Drs appointment was at 11:30. I got back to mom's at one and the door was locked. My keys were inside so I didn't lock it. I asked the secretary that works in the front office what happened she said all she knew is mom went out in a gurney 15 minutes ago. I called the hospital they wouldn't give me any info over the phone. I went down to the emergency room and they were swamped and wouldn't let me in or give me any info. I'm freaking out at this point. I went to friends where I keep spare key and went into mom's. There's a card from APS!! God I'm beginning to really hate them. All of mom's nurses have been saying how good she's doing and what a good job I've been doing. When I finally get to see mom at 8:30 pm. She's scared the nurse says that her thyroid is a little low, her salt is high and she could use more water. The reason listed for her emergency room intake is "not thriving". She's doing better than she's been doing in a month. It was too late to call APS I'll do it tomorrow. I was told a concerned neighbor called. I know which one it was, she's called on at least 8 people. I'm just so tired of these people who are supposed to be helping hurt instead. It takes mom weeks to get over hospital stays. I'm so pissed I've got to end this post now. Just wanted to know if anyone has been able to get APS off their back once they start coming around?

I also had a neighbor keep calling APS. Her goal was to separate my parents from me in order to force them into a NH. That neighbor had decades of abusing my parents and doing everything she could think of to hurt them.

i was finally fed up. Sick of these weekly calls to APS. They never told me it was her...but, they knew.

I. called the family attorney..told him what was happening. Told APS to talk to my Moms attorney.

once I moved my parents, she no longer had anything to try to convince APS I was doing...since she wasn’t around us any more.

PS...this same neighbor managed to get the HOA to tear down my fathers handicap ramp!!! The lawyer dropped the lawsuit when I decided to get them moved and try to quiet the whole thing down. Mom had a stroke, Dads dementia was getting worse fast. Time to get out of the neighborhood for their sake,
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Wow Sparky, sounds like you have a big “X” on your back!

When I was a visiting nurse and saw clients in those high rise Senior buildings, you are so right, everyone makes it a point to notice the comings and goings of all. The group hangs out in the lobby area and checks out everyone being buzzed in.

In some instances it was good - like a commune - for those truly living alone with no family or any visitors.

In other instances, it was simply none of their business what was going on in a resident’s apartment.

Sounds like the latter group are putting their noses where they don’t belong.

You have been really good with the whole situation so far thus I commend you.
It sounds like they are harassing you now and that’s not good.

I suggest dropping into the management office to check in & made some mundane convo and then tell them to “Have a nice day”. Fight fire with fire - charm them but ignore them.

I would take on APS too; I mean engage them in a conversation or meeting to ask what concerns they have. If they won’t discuss, you’ve done your part by reaching out to them. Take notes.
While it’s nice to be good neighbors often there isn’t much to do in the course of a day for the lobby group & any change in routine will prompt a huge hullabaloo.

You are a good son/daughter to your mother. Carry on and I hope theAPS issue is resolved soon for you, as you don’t need added stress trying to do the right thing.

Good luck fighting the good fight!
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SparkyY May 20, 2019
Thanks Shane. I'm her only son. It's gotten so much worse or surreal. Both words work. I had an appointment to speak with someone at APS. I'm getting ready to defend my caretaking of mom and this guy has her last six bank statements in front of him! Wanting to know if I have receipts. The most she makes is $930 a month. I didn't know she didn't get disability while in a temp nursing home so for at least the past 8 months $99 has been coming out of her disability check. She gets 2. SS is $633. SSI is $340 or something. This last time she was in a temp rehab I called so the stopped her disability check for three months. So three of the bank statements only had $633. And he's asking me for receipts. Her rent is $300 phone $40 burial plan is $50 that leaves barely $200. I pay friends for dog sitting. And the first thing I buy are adult diapers which I just got approved for medical paying for until these idiots put a kink in our program. Top it off the did an emergency conserator and I wasn't notified just mom I tried to go to the court proceedings but my name wasn't on anything and she's in the hospital. The judge granted temp guardianship to the assholes. They won't let me get my clothes out of her apartment and the moved her to a place on the other side of the county and I have no car. I know she's freaking out. I just can't understand why someone who's seen her once can make so many life changing plans. I just still am in shock.
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Sparky, I have been thinking about your answer regarding not ‘blaming your neighbour’ without proof. I have had to deal with several cases of theft and fraud in organisations, and I have found that it’s common for people to have a correct gut feeling about who is responsible but feel that they can’t say anything without proof. The fact is that you don’t have to have the evidence to convince a judge – that isn’t your responsibility. Check the gut feeling if you can, but don’t ignore it.

As another example, where I live, bush fires are as big a problem as in California, and every year some are caused by arson. Arsonists like the feeling of power, and love to watch the fuss as the fire is fought and put out. Unfortunately, arsonists even volunteer for the fire services. I would be staggered if there are no people who have the same feelings about reporting on everything and everyone they disapprove of, and it may certainly be true that your neighbour is one of them. Keep your eyes and ears open, and don’t forget the legal option.
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NYDaughterInLaw May 10, 2019
I like your analogy to arsonists.
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I’m really surprised about APS doing this. Here in R.I. they do nothing. My 96 yr old mom has dementia, has fallen in her house numerous times & lives alone. I don’t feel that she is safe, but OB has POA & refuses to let myself & my kids see or talk to her. I really think she’s afraid to go against what he says for some reason.
Just the other day I was told by APS that if something happens to her OB will be responsible...........what kind of answer if that!
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NeedHelpWithMom May 9, 2019
Oh my word! Geeeez!
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I would have Mom evaluated at this point. Let a neurologist determine if she should or should not be left alone. Get it in writing. I like the phone monitoring idea.

I have a friend who lost his wife. He took care of his MIL till the day she pasted. He ran her business for her. Don't think she had Dementia but she was not mobile. He would get her up, dressed and given breakfast. He would then put her in her recliner with snacks,a container of water, TV remote and phone nearby. The business was local, so he was back for lunch and checked on her if near the house. Then later home for dinner.

You know Mom. If you feel she can still follow directions then I see no problem. Its when she starts to forget that she is not mobile enough to walk. Puts a pan on the stove, etc. I did not place my Mom into LTC until she had no idea where she was and I physically could not care for her. If you feel you want to care for Mom, then I see no problem.
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NeedHelpWithMom May 9, 2019
Scary what can happen in a matter of a few minutes, isn’t it?
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Sparky,

Have you tried Council on Aging? It’s a long wait list but worth a try. The respite care is free. They don’t give a lot of hours but it’s a help nevertheless. What about churches in your area? Do they have volunteers? Is hospice or palliative care available? Just tossing suggestions out. Don’t know what you have tried or have lined up. You can’t do everything yourself. It will kill you trying. Take care, Sparky.
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SparkyY May 20, 2019
I'm trying everything but they've already had a court date set up for temporary guardianship and didn't tell me. Mom couldn't go because she's in the hospital. I don't believe these people are truly malicious but I'm missing something they aren't telling me. Because no one with any brains would have done what they did unless they got their facts mixed up.
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Once I met a man in my lab office that left his mom with ALZ in his car. He periodically went to check on her. I asked him if he felt that was safe and he told me that he had no one to stay with her. His only sibling, his sister, worked full time and if he left her home alone it would be worse. When I asked him if he could bring her inside the doctor’s office, he told me, no way! He said she was aggressive and she fought with him all the time. So sad.

Once your name is called it only takes a few minutes to draw blood but I am sure waiting for him felt like forever.

He mentioned to me that he was so stressed one day that he took a bicycle ride around the block and a neighbor saw him and called APS. He said once they investigated and saw she was okay they were fine but that he was scared.

I don’t know what the answer is and how many people go through this. I would be afraid to leave a loved one alone with ALZ. I guess people who are desperate and stressed take chances every once in awhile and they need to care for themselves as well. It’s certainly a difficult challenge for caregivers. My heart goes out to everyone in this situation.
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NYDaughterInLaw May 9, 2019
Again, too many busybody neighbors are out of control calling APS. Unbelievably sad situation in which that lab office mate of your found himself.
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Perhaps get a live videocam for inside her apartment so that you can monitor her from your phone. It is possible that this busybody neighbor waits for you to leave and calls APS and watches the fireworks she's set off. People are out of control.

Many on this forum are quick to suggest "call APS" as if it results in perfect harmony being wrought from chaos. What resources has APS managed to secure for your mother?

"Past the very early stages, a dementia patient cannot and should not be left unsupervised." Okay, and yet most Americans are not flush with cash. Most Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. Most Americans are one paycheck away from disaster. Most Americans cannot afford private pay. Most Americans have not saved for retirement. What exactly are most Americans either with dementia or dealing with a person who has dementia to do when supervision costs $15 per hour and it's a choice between $30 for supervision versus $30 for gas? We must contend with reality.

Sparky - does your mother qualify for longterm care in a public nursing home? I think perhaps it's time to get on with your life and prepare for the inevitable. You still have time to get your ducks in a row. If you're worried about APS and if there's nothing you can do to stop that busybody from calling APS, then perhaps it's time to step back, reevaluate, and change course. Nothing but hard choices here.
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JoAnn29 May 9, 2019
Thank you. I find that we sometimes talk about how our parents didn't look to the future. Maybe, because they lived from pay to pay. There really isn't any middle ground for elderly care in this country. If u have no money, LTC is your only choice. Who wants to live maybe 20yrs in a NH enviroment?
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I’m so sorry this happened. Is she not supposed to be alone at all? You left her in the care of the CNA so what is the problem? Did CNA leave early? What exactly happened? Sounds like your neighbor is one to mind everyone’s business.

Sparky, with a neighbor like you have and most of all for your mom’s safety she can’t be left alone at all. Call an agency to help when you have future doctor appointments.

Hugs!
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You say that you know who called APS and that she has called on 8 people before. Do you know who the other ‘victims’ are? Are the things the caller is saying to APS true or untrue? If they are untrue, it’s libel, a waste of public funds, and also bad for the health of the ‘victims’. This is one situation where a ‘frightener’ letter from a lawyer may be worth the small amount of money it would cost. Lawyer writes to say ‘it appears that’ blah blah blah, any further instances if not justified will be met with libel proceedings or any other appropriate legal action blah. If you can get agreement to mention the names of the others, better still – or even a reference in the lawyer's letter to the fact that there are others. A ‘frightener’ letter does not commit you to further legal action. APS cannot ignore the caller, but it should stop. If you have a neighbour who is vindictive and is doing this because they like to feel important, this would be fully justified.
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SparkyY May 9, 2019
She's only been here a year. I shouldn't have started with blaming her because of course APS won't tell you who called. Other residents told me she called and that she seems to have taken it on as a personal cause to get people out who she seems nursing home ready. She had commented to me on mom's behavior when mom was downstairs with her PT in the lobby. That confused me as they do her Therapy in her room. Then I realized she had mistaken me for a PT. They sprayed for bugs on the 19th and mom had to be out of her appt for a few hours. We were in the lobby for a while waiting for her ride.
It doesn't seem to matter I've told them everything she's safer alone here for a couple of hours than most anywhere else. She's still mostly herself and she can't walk so she doesn't wander. There are 100 rooms in the apartment complex it's 9 stories and you can't get in the building without either calling the person you want to visit from the outside phone or the office. The office is in the main lobby in front of the only entrance. There are cords all over the apartment and two residents on call mom didn't pull the cord she's not so far gone that she would have done that and forgot. She was a resident on call her first seven years here. She's lived here for almost 13 years.
Anyway they're talking about conservership (sp?). "Because old people should be in a home together". Swear to God that is a direct quote from the last idiot I talked to. I feel like I'm in a twilight zone movie where all the idiots are the "professionals" now. It seems to me that our culture has placed so much more value on the youth that it's now ok to say that unless we are free from our responsibility to our older loved ones then we won't "have a life". Who decided that you can't have a life caring for your older loved ones? Everyone is so worried about my well being it feels like they think they're doing this more for me than mom.
It's like. Ok get the old lady away from him he's got a few good years left maybe he can get a life. I have a life.
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Most people I know look more relieved and less stressed once their loved ones end up in long term care. You seem to be living mom's life and not your own. Plus risking your own health. It may be time to get her in a facility. Then you can plan on visiting her and focusing on your relationships
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SparkyY May 9, 2019
I know for most people that would be true but as unhealthy as it may seem to most people this is my life she is my life. I went out into the world kind of. I wasn't always with mom. I had my own apartment etc. But I never went a day without talking to her. She was a good mom while I was growing up. It was always her who pushed me to get a life. I had this great unrealistic idea of what this time would be like. Me and my incredibly rich good looking boyfriend would have a home with a mother inlaw apartment attached and mom would make us breakfast and babysit our beautiful adopted Oriental daughter while we went to work. One day we'd wake up and not smell anything cooking for breakfast and we'd find mom in bed passed away in her sleep. We'd cry and morn for a while but then move on.
Well didn't quite go down like that but so far in my life I only knew one truth. My mom loved me unconditionally and sincerely. I always knew this without a doubt. She could be a total bitch but nothing ever made me doubt that. She never remarried and the few relationships I had put the fun in disfuntional. I know people think it's unhealthy but it is what it is. I'm fifty I never considered her not being with me at the end. I don't want a different life either does she and whether or not someone else's opinion is different shouldn't matter. I don't need that much help just some. As for money I am living it seems the same as I was when I was getting $300 a week unemployment. That was $300 more a month than what mom gets and now we are both living off my $200 food stamps and her $940 SS and nothing has really changed much except I haven't gambled in over a year and I haven't done drugs in a long time. My point is if she's happy and taken care of and I'm happy taking care of her what's wrong with that?
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Ya I know anger is a gut reaction. I try and step back. The neighbor who called is the same one that thought I was mom physical therapist. Her appt was sprayed for roaches on the 19th and she had to be out for four hours. The lady was telling me she saw mom down in the lobby arguing with physical therapist and proceeded to tell me what mom should be doing. I talked to everyone on mom's team and finally figured the lady mistook me for PT. Anyway that's neither here nor there. The IHHS people stopped mom's case on the 20th until she could be reevaluated so no caregiver until then even though she'd already been approved for 96 hours a month. Instead of keeping that until they reevaluated they cancelled everything. I appreciate everyone's advice. It's a complicated situation and not close to normal. The building she's in has emergency residents on call mom has a string right by her bed she can pull in an emergency and has one of those"I've fallen and I can't get up buttons". She can't walk so she's not going anywhere. Her nurse said she thought she'd be fine for a couple of hours by herself still. Anyway I can't argue with logic. It just feels wrong to put her in a home now. I know it's inevitable but she was happy again and now she has hospital dementia again and the only thing they found wrong was high sodium and low thyroid. She's taking meds for those so no big surprise. It takes her a couple of weeks to get over a hospital stay and I'm tired of defending myself to these people who just want her in a nursing home. If she did better there I wouldn't mind sending her. I've got a lot to figure out. Thanks 😊
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Sparky Y, Barb is right. APS has concerns for your mother and couldn’t care less whether you are “pissed” or not. APS is very persistent and will not give up until they’re convinced your mother is ok. You are on their radar now, no matter who called. They are aware that your mother is not at full mental capacity and the fact is that she was home alone. They are aware that Mom had an “incident” and had to be 911-ed.

Yes, you are proactive about caring for her. You have an aide. No one could predict how long you’d be at the doctor’s. But maybe you need to re-examine her care and supervision. Anger is a gut reaction. But maybe you need to speak with her aide and her doctor and see if there are other possibilities for her. Daycare? Can the aide stay longer when you need to leave Mom alone? If APS sees you are committed to giving Mom the best care, they’ll back off.
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kbuser May 9, 2019
I totally agree. I had a similar situation where my mom's doctor said she can't be left alone ever. I ended up finding a personal care agency that could stay longer if I was late getting back from an appt and enlisted help from my brother. Adult daycare is a great option if your mom is willing to go. My mom isn't mobile enough to take advantage of it.
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The simplest way to get APS off your back is to agree with everything they say, identify yourself what rules you have broken - picture a scene from the cultural revolution - and conspicuously comply with them in future. It may at times go against the grain but there is no other.

And, so, what happened between your leaving the house prior to 11:30 and your returning at 13:00? Apart from suspicions about the nosey neighbour, you don't know - and that's kind of the point.

Just idly musing... Is the nosey neighbour up for a little mother-sitting next time you have an appointment? Be a triumph if you could turn her and recruit her, no?
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SparkyY May 9, 2019
Nothing happened. The CNA had already left. Mom is able to be alone for a couple of hours at a time. They didn't take her because she was by herself they took her actually I haven't been able to get an answer on why they took her other than someone called and they have to investigate.
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Sparky, I think you need to step back for a second.

Your mom has dementia. She was home alone.

Past the very early stages, a dementia patient cannot and should not be left unsupervised.

Before you go off on APS or a neighbor, find out if mom got "scared" and called 911 ( it happens).

If mom is going to continue to live at home with you, you need to figure out how to have someone stay with her when you go out. Like the CNA. Or a neighbor.
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