Should I ban my father's companion from calling and visiting him? I can't stand her, but is it really in his best interest?

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I'm an only child and my father has no living relatives. He has always been difficult to deal with and has alienated what friends are still living. He no longer remembers his two grandchildren. His female companion of 15 years is a toxic, dysfunctional person. I have tried to get him to leave her alone over the years, but due to being lonely, she is the one person who would indulge his poor behavior. He has always treated her poorly; even now, he once told the staff "I don't wanna talk to that b*tch." When he does talk, it's with no sense of happiness or comfort; he just babbles about whatever delusion he's having at the moment.

He's in a geri-psych ward and there are no phones in the rooms. Recently she called the front desk requesting to speak with him. She was informed their cordless phones were being replaced - she would have to wait or call back. She did so, several times. A nurse put her on hold for apparently too long of a time - mind you the nurses have to take care of the patients and are not always able to immediately run down the patient's room and hand them the phone. His companion yelled at the nurse, filed a grievance with the center, and calls repeatedly every day, demanding to speak with my father, even when he is asleep.

She lies and says she's a family member or that she is his girlfriend. Even when my dad was healthy, he always said they were friends and that's it. He always told her he didn't believe in love like that and no woman would be better for him than my mother was. I can't understand why someone would claim to be someone's girlfriend when that person didn't claim them back.

I don't want her causing problems for the staff. They have been nothing but nice and reassuring and they go to great lengths to care for my dad, whose behavior is at times horrible. But they do their jobs. I am satisfied with his care. She exacerbates his paranoia. She always has. But, she is the only person who would ever call or visit him besides me. I don't think it's worth letting her continue to be involved in his life. She has been nothing but a thorn in my side and in my dad's side as far as I'm concerned. She constantly stirs up drama. I'm worried my contempt for her is driving me to make a decision that is in my best interest, not my dad's. I need advice from an impartial source. I'm already struggling as a single mom to deal with the fallout of him being placed in a nursing home. I live an hour away from his old house and I have to deal with Medicaid applications, Veteran Affairs, his bills and everything else. This woman is useless to me and from what I see brings no pleasure to my dad. He lights up and cheers when I visit. He has no reaction whatsoever when she comes around, unless it's annoyance. She's not a reasonable person in my opinion. I just wish she would leave him alone. Should I step in? I told her when he first went in that I would only allow it if she didn't aggravate him. He's so indifferent to her that's not really aggravation. But she is aggravating to me and his caregivers. Please share your thoughts. The bottom line is his best interest, not mine. What would you do?

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I know how hard this must be. You are doing the right thing. She was right about one thing -- this isn't about you. It is about your dad and creating a safe, comfortable, sane environment for him. You can feel good that that is what you have been aiming for all along. You did not put your dislike of this woman first, you put your dad's interests first.
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So this Monday morning at 8:00am I get a call from the nf telling me this woman has been calling all weekend; several times a day. She even went to visit him. The nurses said she was rude and demanding to know what his medications were. She's convinced the trans-dermal exelon patch is what makes him "talk out of his head". Each time he spoke with her, he would then hide the phone and claim it was his. Although the visit seemed ok, the staff said he was agitated after speaking with her on the phone. He became uncooperative with the staff, although he had been behaving well prior to talking with her. This has been really bothering me all weekend. When I went to see him yesterday, he looked well and calm. I thought everything was going ok. But getting that phone call this morning has really upset me.

The social worker asked me how can better deal with this woman. The staff had to search the entire wing of the unit to find where my dad put the phone. Twice. That's not at all good. She said they will now only let him use the corded phone. My dad has never been much for talking on the phone anyway. When I call, I just want to talk to the nurses to see how he's doing. And I don't call 4 to 6 times a day. Does anyone else think this is excessive? I surely do. She would call him that often before he got sick and even then it never made sense to me. Their relationship was a constant state of turmoil and toxic behavior. I would try to reason with my dad about it, and he would agree. But then he'd talk to her and she'd convince him I was wrong. That's one big reason I post this; I want to do what's in his best interest and not mine.

I decided to go ahead and ban her from contacting him or me again. I told the social worker at the nf to remove her name and no longer accept her calls. Even if she doesn't upset him, I feel it's wrong for her to be so contentious with the staff. I need everyone involved in my father's care to be on the same page. She is disruptive to his care environment. I called her immediately to let her know she is no longer welcome to contact my dad. I told her I got a call from the nf about her behavior with the staff. She told me it wasn't about me. Really? I think it is when I'm POA and they are calling me asking me about how to deal with her. I try telling her she can't be calling and cursing and upsetting the staff. She tells me they were rude to her first. But my thought is, even if they were, how is your response helpful? She doesn't listen to anyone; you can't tell her anything at all. I told her that I tried as hard as I could to deal with her but I can't do it anymore. I feel bad that I'm in this position. I don't want to do this, but I can't take her ridiculous behavior. My next step is to contact a lawyer. She has no legal claim at all to my dad and I don't think she stole any money from him, but she did bounce checks every month because she didn't wait until his pension checks were deposited. I just want her to go away, but I feel like she won't.
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First of you can give them a code and it works for the hospital just as well before she can talk to ur dad she has to know the pw and that will limit other actions. It also seems she is predatorial and making slander about you doesn't help. Ur his daughter and ur in charge of who sees him at the facility take her name of the list and inform their security she is not to see him and if you go the next step put a restraining order on her preventing her from talking to him on the phone or stepping inside the facility she will be arrested for violating it but you also have to remember you can't talk to her or see her. I would also dig up any info as if she taken any of ur dad's personal money etc. You can do this ...do not let her control the situation u control and if it is the best interest for your dad since he doesn't remember his grandkids then this will not be an issue and make sure her name is no where on any medical documents and or his will to be exact ....investigate and investigate and if the situation gets out of control call the cops and they will put her in a 72 hr hold if u view her as danger to you and your father especially if she has shown violent outbursts in the past.
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Thanks for responding jeannegibbs. I will talk to the doctor about it, but my dad has only been in this particular facility for one week. Prior to this nf, he was hospitalized. She had removed him from another nf because she didn't like it, even though she had no authority. In fact, she has moved him in and out of 4 different nfs. I was not aware of any of this; she had convinced my dad I was a greedy selfish child. I stayed away because I would not support his abusive behavior, even though I loved him dearly. I only even found out about his condition a month ago. She filed for guardianship. I found out he had given me DPOA several years ago, without telling me. Once I became aware of the situation, I went into action mode. Had I known about the DPOA, this whole situation would not have occurred.
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Good for you, for trying to make this decision on an objective basis! You are a very caring daughter.

I would not be so concerned that she aggravates the staff. I have a feeling that they can look after themselves.

As for whether Dad gets anything positive out of her visit, could you talk to his doctors and get their input on that topic?
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