We're caring for spouse's mom. His brothers gave us a VERY hard time when she went to respite at a local nursing home. What to do?


Mom has dementia. We care for her as she went to the hospital with malnutrition and failure to thrive while living with the younger brother. I am angry! She has sundowners and does not sleep, therefore I do not sleep and I still care for her during the day. We needed the 5 day break in care (my husband still works and has been sleep deprived also). All his brothers do is bitch about where she was for the 5 days. We are also looking to a more permanent placement as she is a handful. I am disabled and she is turning to be too much for me to handle with a bad back. So I trying to find a place, nice, within her budget, but the younger brother is the one on the checking account. None of us has power of attorney or conservatorship so this has to be a family decision, but I think they want me to continue to care for her! Any ideas?

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You pick a place, anyone who wants to veto your choice has to provide an alternative place. The alternative cannot be your home must be within budget and in desired geographic location. These are the rules for the discussion. You are dealing with the problem, your predecessor failed, so you get the strongest voice. Do not be afraid to lead. You are already doing all the work, so you have earned the right to lead the decision.
Spectators in this situation do not get an equal vote.
If your respite choice was not acceptable why did a sibling not offer to stay with mom at your place, while you and hubby stayed in a hotel. A moderate hotel like a Hampton inn can be pleasant for a week and cheaper than respite.
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I think if the younger brother balks about placement, you need to ask him what time is a good time to drop her off at his place. I would explain calmly that since he has financial control, it is best that Mom is with him so he can make the proper decisions for her care. In my experience it is always the ones that do not do the caretaking that are most critical. They want everything to be perfect for Mom or Dad, but they have lives that are much too busy to do the work. I understand that he did not do a good job caring for her before. But perhaps now that he has had you handle all the caregiving, he may be more receptive to a care facility rather than taking the work/responsibility back himself.
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The one doing the care makes the decisions and should have total access to the money. The complainers should either step up or shut up!

If it is a well organized family of love doing the caregiving better yet...that is found few and far between, unfortunately for the one needing the care.
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Ask the family to set up schedule of when they will do their shift of caring for your family member. Everybody will have a say and everybody will have their lives disrupted or everyone will decide on the facility they need for mom. I'm sure their minds will refocus on what will work for EVERYBODY. GOOD LUCK.
There is never enough family in this situation.
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