Follow
Share

My mom, who's 83 and has been diagnosed with dementia, came to live with us 2+ years ago after my siblings took everything she had. They were all up in Washington state. I was kept in the dark but tried to do the right thing and bring her to live with us after her other 2 kids died of alcoholism. This is a crazy long story so I’ll try not to ramble...I brought mom home and got her with Kaiser/Medicare. She's had cataracts removed from both eyes and a total knee replacement as of December 2106. She's basically mobile but prefers to be left alone to watch her TV or read. She's "seems" to be coherent only when she wants to be and manages her bathroom and eating habits as long as we clean up after her. I have to remind her all the time and she doesn't like that at all. But, these are her personality traits as long I can remember so we have been patient. We are being forced by the IRS to close our small business after 30 years because we are not “solvent” on paper. Since we can’t pay over $80K in back taxes, now my 71-year-old husband and I must “get jobs”. So, we must file bankruptcy, and move in with my son, his wife and 3 little girls under 7. I am 63 and have health issues of my own. Right now, anxiety has me shaking so bad I can barely type this. Our lease on our rental home is up in August. We CANNOT take my mom with us and there is NOBODY else in her family alive that can take her in. PLEASE HELP!

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
I feel SO much better than a week ago after read everyone's Q & As on this site! I've made more progress than I would have thought possible just reading your advice and stories. Thank God for all of you...You are in my prayers always and I am certain that with information and due diligence we will all succeed.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Grateful, you are in a very difficult and uncomfortable position that is doing no one any good. Not you or your husband, but not your mother either.

Your mother needs support and practical help that for very sound and fair reasons you simply cannot provide. But as long as you are there on the record, with POA and attending appointments and actively involved, the agencies that otherwise would be responsible for ensuring her basic needs are met defer to you. Of course they do. How many families would appreciate being overruled or overtaken by external authorities? As long as you're there, nominally in charge of the decisions that your mother cannot make for herself, they expect you to do the work.

You do have the option of resigning your POA, formally writing to your mother's doctors and her case worker to inform all concerned that you are unable to act for her. They would then be forced to take over and make the necessary applications and decisions. The major problem would be the problem you originally faced when your brother sadly passed away: that you baulk painfully at the idea of "abandoning" your mother.

What I suggest is that you sit down with a big sheet of paper and list all of the things that need to be done. Such as...

researching and inspecting facilities
negotiating placement
organising finances
having your mother's loss of capacity formally established, so that your DPOA comes into force
physically moving your mother and her belongings
deciding what to do with her property, including real estate
liaising with medical and care teams...

... and meanwhile, which should have started some months ago by the sound of it, supervising her day-to-day welfare.

I suggest that you can't do this. Look at the time involved, look at the mental and physical demands. You and your husband are no spring chickens, and you have your own health to consider. It isn't a matter of callously abandoning your mother; the point is that her needs far outweigh your ability to meet them, no matter how much you would like to.

Talk to her case worker again, and be very clear and frank about the true condition of your own and your husband's health. Your family has already lost one brother through attempting to please your mother; and here's the key problem - where did that leave your mother? Neck deep in the soup, with nobody to care for her. Don't make yourself another futile and needless sacrifice. The job needs doing properly, by people with the right resources, authorities and expertise to do it.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

OCWoman
My friends sister lives in Orange County. Sister lost her husband back in October. Long story short sister was in bad shape (practically catatonic) my friend ( who lives in NM) called area on aging who contacted Kaiser. They came to sisters home and got her medical attention and gave her options. Because she has a condo with equity ( still facing foreclosure) and is much younger (68) she might have more options than your mom, but still the AOA social worker told my friend to call her back when sister had one month left before being removed from her home and she would help place her. The psychologist from Kaiser was amazing and encouraged sister to move closer to her childhood home. It turns out sister has been rescued by other means but the help was there. The choices weren't great in OC because Sisters SS was too low to pay for INdependent living or ALF but they were told there were more reasonably priced facilities outside of OC.
They did look in OC and found long wait lists on the better places and some of the places were really shocking to them. I wish your family well. I hope you and your husband will be out on your own soon and your mom finds a safe place.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

countrymouse....its so so crazy...I had to get my mother to her family dr for her arms burning...its what my mother says is happening to her...but intending to get his take on her mental status..i slipped him a paper stating on it to access her mental status and he said it out loud...my mother immediately became enraged and started yelling and carrying on...the dr saw that and read my lips...asking him to access her and he started asking her questions and she became irate and then I calmed her down and she started telling the dr her same old stories we have heard over 1000 times...after this he said tome he would leave a note ..I sent for the record on that meeting and have it...it says late onset alzheimers...well, I didn't know what to do after that...my mother kept going to emergency at all hours using her alert system she has at home costing her 1003.00 a trip. finally I got the ER to assess her and the dr there said she has dementia and psychosis and suggested to her family dr to reevaluate her. well, then he made an apt with a neurologist and when I got her there the neuro said..what do you need me for..???.....I said what....I told her why and that she couldn't say anything about dementia...she agreed and went into evaluate her and started again on her same stories...and then they finished up and I was in there and as the neuro was leaving I said okay what is her eval. on this and she acted frustrated as my mom can do to people and she said okay she has alzheimers and psychosis and I'm done now wit this okay , next you see adult services ..so an apt was made and I got her in the next day...we live 4hrs away from my mother..i saw the gal in adult protective services and she spoke to mom and said..since my mother is so obstinate and hard to deal with and doesn't want to go into any form of assisted living that I'm going to have to get guardianship .....just so she is safe...so my mother once again was assigned a case worker to see her...the gal came once that I know of...so far...they are only interested in me getting guardianship and even that takes time...my husband and I have to come there and have so many times in between our own health issues....we are home now because my husband had several apts as he is 70 and just came through cancer...and we are due back to her house again for her roof and ceiling being taken care of through her insurance company. I was able to get durable power of attorney and power of attney for her health and a will ...so....I have been ill and stressed out to the max....I don't want to do guardianship...I want things to just work themselves out but I was told if I have power of attorney then I can be held liable if anything happens to her because she is alone in her home. my husband is frustrated at that...my mother has a lot of power and as affected many lives to the negative..however, I need something and I'm going back to her family dr and let him know I didn't get much out of that so called neurologist...we will be moving there but have to be careful as we aren't rich to buy a house...I don't want to live in my mothers home...I would rather sell it and put the money from it in her account...it will help pay for her stay at an assisted living or alzheimers unit...
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

the only way that VA WILL enter into it...will be when all monies are exhausted ...I have seen this for others seeking care for their parents ..they want to know all means of income and if there are any savings otherwise...my husband is retired military..
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Thank you everybody that gave me good advice and support. There were a few nay-sayers that appear to have their own issues but you can't win them all. Anyway...
GOOD NEWS! I called Kaiser and I was put in touch with an organization that is giving me step-by-step direction on how to proceed as far as tapping into my father's vet benefits while they check on placement availability. I am at work but my daughter is currently going through the boxes in the garage gathering any information that will assist us. I know somewhere in there is mom's marriage cert, dad's death cert., etc.
It is looking hopeful...I will give you all updates. I pray my circumstances will help others that wind up in my boat!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

One of the posters on this thread mentioned a father who had been in the Army? That might bring something in the VA system into play.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

OC Woman,
Let's keep this going until you can work your way out of the issues you have presented here on your question, because it is many faceted, including the tax issues and bankruptcy.
It's not over yet.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Agreeing with others. You can contact your local county and apply for Medicaid for your mother. Many nursing homes will accept Medicaid payment for their beds. In general, I think filing for Medicaid may take 60 days. But contact as many people through your local county as possible. It's amazing how many people can help you. In my area, the Area Agency on Aging was also administered through our County.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Grateful, when you say your mother has Alzheimers Disease - but she's living alone, and is shall we say not exactly winning friends and influencing people among the professional caregiving services in her area - has the AD been diagnosed formally, and has her mental capacity been assessed? Is she competent, in the technical legal sense?

It's just that when you say she screeched to a halt over the move to memory care, or AL with memory care, if she does have progressing dementia it will ultimately not be her decision to make. Meanwhile, though, while she is making or being allowed to make these decisions, then let her.

You will indeed go the way of your poor late brother if you allow yourself to get sucked in to a position of responsibility without authority. I appreciate how harsh this sounds, but if your mother makes the decisions then she also has to take the consequences. So that, although you say she's your mother and you can't "let her be like that", unless she permits you to do what's necessary for her welfare you must refuse to accept responsibility for it.

So, where are we? Is she competent or not?
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

wow I thought I was the only one. I'm going on 66 and my husband is 70/ my mother has alzheimers and psychosis...whatever all this is together...she is 83 and can out run us. we are actually slugs. my husband and I have bad health problems and my mother doesn't except for alzheimers. my father died in 2014 and then my brother who was helping her out died suddenly. the two tragedies were too much for her and her hair started turning gray...mind you she is 83 and its just now turning gray. well, she has been living in her own home now for 3 yrs since my dad died and 2 yrs since my brother died..mom had 5 kids ..im the oldest and live in another town 4hrs away and my two sisters live in Washington state and the other in Delaware...across the country from my mom...I have one brother who cut her off...he couldn't have anything to do with her as he lives in a little town right next to her. she wanted him there 24/7...and he has a family and works. mom is very demanding and wants her way all the time. well, she started calling the police on my brother for not mowing her grass...and harassed him at his work on the phone. he almost lost his job over it and she knew it and doesn't care. so to save himself and his family he had to cut her off...well, I'm the oldest daughter...so I couldn't let her be like that...I was told by a nurse who lives above me and handles the elderly that my mother is toxic. she will mow over anyone and that I would die before years end if I didn't just do what my brother did. well, I couldn't do that...my mother insists I live with her...im still married to my husband of almost 48yrs now and my mother and husband do not get along. they really fight and she can hold her own. my husband drives me to where my mom is and then stays in one of her bedrooms to keep out of her way. she is insisting that we live with her...that is impossible..she says she has a big home and she does...and is so lonely that is her gripe....I tried to get her into assisted living w/memory care. I paid for her apartment and got a moving truck and it was coming and at the last moment she said NO. she said I wont be happy there. well, before my brother died, she went through 14-15 visiting angels. she had to have them day and night. what money my father left my mother was going fast and my brother before he died told me. well, my mother caused so many problems with the visiting angels that one of them had to get phsychiatric treatment. they black listed her where she lives. she functions as to everything but driving. she calls a taxi cab when she needs to and her grandson from my bro that died comes once a week to do her bills and she had a friend who had a stroke who was also taking her to other functions. I'm sure that stroke was caused by my mother. she is a combination of I LOVE LUCY AND MOMMIE DEAREST....her world isn't the real world but she functions in it and insists on her way. I was able to get POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR EVERYTHING INCLUDING HER HEALTH and A WILL and ON HER ACCOUNTS AT THE BANK so that I could at one point take over paying her bills. she gets very little from my dads retirement from the army and civil service. when I saw what she got I was grateful my dad left her pretty good with some money. we had the phone alert system in her house but we had to pull it out as she was using it to go to the emergency room for what she thought were emergencies and were not..costing $1003 one way trip to hospital. they didn't have to use anything on her at all...I don't think that emergency ambulance service should be that expensive...I asked why and was told well everyone else is that high so we have to keep up. I think that law needs to be changed...like the drive maybe 300 and then charge for the cost of whatever was done in the ambulance and show they can prove they did those things. my husband and I decided to move closer right near where she lives. EVERYONE THERE KNOWS SHE IS messedup and wonders why we aren't taking care of her...we go down all the time and do what we can to help...but in no way can we live with her because she is toxic...I hate to say that about my own mother...we can just be in the house with her..she orders us around and argues to no end like we are children. I looked at my poor husband who just retired his second retirement..1st from the air force 23yrs and then from civilian life work and after that he found out he had cancer of the prostate and had surgery to take it out and then he had severe foot problems and then eye problems as he has severe diabetes....I have a seizure disorder and have had 2 strokes I knew nothing about and I have a cyst on my brain and my brain is folded over and I have liver disease I don't drink ...a little heart problem and barrets esophagus and severe sleep apnea....so our health is on the line here....my mother has enough money to pay for her to be in a home for a few years...im sure she wouldn't get any support because she has money plus a home....I have heard people say that before Medicaid or any other type of help would be able to help is if there is no money had...so...some families exhaust the demented persons finances so they can get help....God bless you I do know what you are going through....my health is going down because of my mother who could care less....
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

You won't be much help to anyone if you don't take care of yourself! Seek support from a social worker or support group for caregivers, and try and stay calm. Stress kills. You may likely meet others who are or have been in the same sort of situations, and have possible answers to many of your questions, that really helps!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Have you checked if Kaiser has social workers that can help?
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Don't panic.
There is a plan B, you just don't know what that is yet.
Hubs can work? Mom can get SSI?
Please do not move in with your son.
Remain independent, stay together, keep mom with you as long as possible, work your way out of this problem.
Think outside of the box.
There is some affordable housing in California-try mobilehomes.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

I'm soooooo sorry dear girl... ! Oh! I will imagine that you WILL find some direction, some guidance... some relief... soon...
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

In indiana she would probably be made a ward of the state. And sent to a state hospital. Or possibly a nursing home using her ssi to pay, The last obligation law is rarely in forced and only applies to children who can afford to support there parents. You some times can get free info from a paralegal some lawyers have them to do probono work as part of there training. I have gotten help from them and been very satisfied, most times they can at least point you in the right direction to get government advisors.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Definitely contact your state AOA. Senior Center should be able to provide information.
There are programs to help elders. May not be ideal, but you need some direction to help you.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Thank you for the info. I will keep y'all informed as I progress. Happy Memorial Day!
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

OCWOMAN, you should call your Counties "agency on Aging", look it up online, or in the phone book, you can also inquire at you local Senior Center, as they often have someone there who can point you in that direction. Once you have contacted them, they will set up a "needs assessment" with your Mom, and you in attendance. They can point out all the available services she might possibly apply for, and then it's up to you to force the issue of her needing inpatient care, as you are financially and physically unable to continue being her full time or even part-time caregiver.

It might take some time, and due diligence on your part, and you must not give up! You will also need to be in contact with her Dr, as there may be Dementia assessments that need to be addressed.

Unfortunately, your Mom may need to become a ward of the state, and the state may assigned guardianship of her, but you will still be able to be her daughter and your family won't have to give up their relationship with her.

In the meantime, the AOA should also point you in the direction of some RESPITE CARE for YOU! You need to be very frank with them about your own needs, and hopefully they will find you a state/county grant or other funding, to get you some much needed time off and a break away from your responsibility of her, where she will be placed for (unfortunately) only a week or so, so you can get some rest!

As so many of us here have found, persistence is key, in finding the help you need! Don't give up on yourself or her! There is help our there, and the more you search it out, the more you will find! Good Luck!
Helpful Answer (7)
Report

I don't know the details about your state. I'm going to provide you a link for a website that may help. I'm sending it to you by PM, since we aren't supposed to post links here.
I hope you can find some options that help.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

We are in California...please tell me something good?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

OCWoman, what  state are you located?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

You need someone who's really knowledgeable about the benefits and processes that apply in your area; so that counts me out, but I hope others will know either the details or where you can find professional support. You may also find a lot of useful information online if you search for your county or state services.

I just wanted to offer huge sympathy with the terrible stress you must be dealing with, and to second Sunnygirl's reassurance that none of this is your fault.
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

In some states, dementia is considered a disability for benefit purposes and there may be coverage for her in a facility, like a Memory Care unit. Some states offer this. It's similar to Medicaid, but, for Assisted Living and not nursing home care. I'd find out where to apply on her behalf. Qualifications are normally based on income and assets, similar to Medicaid. You can explain how you are not able to provide for her care any longer and see what options there are for her in your community.

You might see if any other family member is able and willing to come forward first. This is not your fault. Even families with large homes, ample resources and lots of time find it very challenging to provide around the clock care for a family member with dementia. It is a huge undertaking. People with dementia normally progress to need constant assistance with every aspect of their daily activities. (feeding, bathing, toileting, etc.)

Try to get some relief and know that you are only human. Try to stop stressing. I hope you'll get some more suggestions.
Helpful Answer (8)
Report

You need to engage the help of a regular GP doctor as soon as possible - because residential care is not just a service needed for dementia patients, it's also needed for people who have all their marbles but are physically incapacitated. He may be able to find you a care home for your mother that is low cost - then you contact your siblings immediately to split the costs - between their contributions and whatever pension your mother gets because you have no income. If your siblings cleaned your mother out of cash, you must now face them with the consequences of that - and get a lawyer on your side too.If they refuse utterly, then consult the lawyer on what would happen to your mother if you and your husband moved away and left her "on the state". There may be some geriatric charities that you haven't heard about who could sponsor your mother in a care home for a short while while things get sorted out.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.