What do I do in this horrible situation that has placed me in peril?

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I need to update my profile so I don't repeat myself so much. In short, my dad died in 2010 and mom was depressed and lonely, I visited six months prior to his death to visit him in the nursing home, he did not know me, he had alzheimers, I was also shocked to see the state of my mother. I was in the US and she in Ireland.

I talked to my mother at least twice a day every day on the phone. I knew she was slipping, repeating herself, and since I had been helping from afar with her finances and other matters, I noticed I had to really explain more and more to her about writing numbers, I knew this was not good and I would have to be with her sooner than later.

I gave up all I owned which was a great deal, sold my car, shipped things at a great expense that I just did not want to lose and jumped through hoops with USDA, customs, etc to get my cat over to Ireland. The red tape was paralyzing.

When I arrived in Ireland, the car service man, a friend of my mothers, told me to be prepared because my mother was not quite the same. We called her to let her know I arrived, she said she wouldn't be home because she had to go to my dad's anniversary mass. This was in April, dad died December, yet she was thinking it was Christmas, so I was stunned.

The next few months I spent trying to figure out what was going on with her. The neighbors insisted she was fine just old age, and still yet, I said why didn't you let me know how bad she was getting, they said we didn't want to alarm you since you were in USA, yet they in the same breath say it is just old age and she is fine. I found out it was more than that with all the crazy things she was doing and saying.

It got to the point where she became at times hostile and accused me of being a bully. She told the neighbors I was hitting her. I was serving her all her meals, doing everything I could to make her feel comfortable. She refused to go out with me to get her hair cut or get a manicure, pedicure, lunch, anything to make her feel good. The neighbors said I was keeping her from going out?? I tried to wash her clothes, she refused to dress just wear pajamas, I tried to wash those and just washed what I could. Whenever I told mom she needed to try to bathe, go out, she said I was yelling at her. When I told her what she did not want to hear she said I was yelling at her. The house was ovewhelming cluttered, I would plow through a pile and move to another to go back and see her filling it up again. She would take piles of garbage into her room with various things, pictures, her handbag, and put under her pillows. When I told her this was not good, she said I was yelling at her and being a bully.

The long and short of it came to this, she went out to go to the neighbors house and locked herself out, I did not hear her banging on the door. The cops came and she started screaming that she didn't love me and to get me out of the house, I spent a few hours in my pajamas being detained in station while they arranged for me to stay in a homeless shelter. The next morning they let me call her and she said where have you been all night, they talked to her and she told them she missed me and wanted me home, they let me go home.

When I got home traumatized, she smirked at me telling her what happened. I couldn't believe it, she had been talking to the neighbors and her doctor who insisted she come in that day. The public health nurse came by to as she said, check on us. She said she thought my mother should go into a respite care for a few days, mom didn't want to go, I didn't know what to think or say. Off she went to doctors, the nurse said she would call me and let me know what was going on. I heard nothing, it was Friday, I couldn't find out anything, Sat or Sun. Monday, I am freaking out, what is happening, should I find out or am I supposed to wait and not interfere with her diagnosis, get her excited and upset. Tuesday, I find out she is in respite care 160 euro ride from me and I can visit for an hour. What the heck is going on, I am led to believe they are waiting on diagnosis by consultant, I wait. Then I find out my neighbors knew where she was right away and went to visit her without taking me, they ripped into me saying I didn't love my mother and should be ashamed of myself for abusing her and that she was in there because they wanted to keep her safe from me??? I can't describe how broken hearted all this has made me. Right now they are getting various people together to meet with me and find out if they can release her to come home with me here. They are trying to get her to remove me from the house, I have nowhere to go and am at wits end. I continue to pay the bills online the way mom and I agreed to do it. Do they have a legal right to keep her, she is crying to come home to me, telling them I didn't do anything to her. Could a lawyer help me, I don't know what to do, I am sick to my stomach over all this. This forum is my only help.

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Thanks, Madeaa. As you mentioned, you are aware that it will progressively get worse. The neighbors are a catch-22 situation. Bad association can spoil useful habit. If you can just find a way to be NEUTRAL with the neighbors. If you can find a truce in your relationship with them, it will be soooo much easier to discuss mother and the need to keep her stable emotionally/physically. Because it's like Eddie said, in the long run further down the road, you WILL be needing others. And your neighbors are the closest.

I understand what you're feelings are about the neighbors - somewhat. I have my oldest bro and his family living right next door to us. I have spent the past 23 years angry and resentful towards them for not helping father and I physically with mom's care. When father had the stroke last year, I assumed that they would step in. They didn't. Brother only started helping, when he found out that his younger brother (competitive brothers) was helping me financially. I found this site just this year. I had soooo much anger, resentment and bitterness towards bro of next door. I learned from others here the importance of letting it go. Accept it "as is" and as "my siblings rights to NOT help with the parents." It was something I had to struggle Within Me to let go of all that negative emotions. But I did it. And if I can do it (23 yrs of resentment/anger), I'm sure that you can, too. No need to be bossom dinner guests to one another. Just be friendly enough that they will be there in your time of need in the distant future. And if this is something that you're not ready to do - then so be it! Go with what you are comfortable with. So far, your guts/instincts have gotten you this far. Don't hesitate to update us or VENT here if you need it! HUGS!!! Book
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Kate, there's nothing incoherent about your words. The only thing I recommend is not to alienate the neighbors. It seems they look out for one another, and will be very supportive as your Mom declines. I apologize if my words don't seem uplifting, but I like keeping things real and try not to sugarcoat anything. Not when you're dealing with Alzheimer's / Dementia.

Anyway, the Seroquel will alleviate the mania and stabilize her. In the meantime, do your best to find out the Irish way of coping with this kind of situations. I think it's a blessing in disguise that there are concerned neighbors who might be willing to share the responsibility of caring for Mom. Their ways are a pain in the a__ while you adjust, but in the long-run they'll be a support system for your golden years.

Our hearts are with you.
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(((((((Madeaa)))))) Thanks for lettng us know what is going on. Sounds like you have made the best of it you can, I am so glad that they have arranged for help for you - finally someone gets it, but not the neighbour, apparently. Your mum will need more care as time goes on, and maybe more than you can give her, but you can cross that bridge when/if you come to it. You certainly are a survivor. Wish8ing you a merry Christmas and all the best for the new Year. Be sure to take caree of you! Love, hugs and prayers, Joan
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Blessings to you and keeping you in our prayers.
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Do they have restraining orders in Ireland? Get one against your mother's neighbors. It should forbid them from coming around your mother and interfering in your care of her.
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Hi my forum friends, I am so glad that I have you all to help me, I would be lost and alone without you all, knowing that I am not alone and that I do have people who understand makes a world of a difference.

The update: Well you all know what I went through, the jail, the homeless shelter, yada yada. On October 12th my mother went into Respite Care, supposedly for two weeks. I was glad because it gave me time to regroup and I hoped that a diagnosis and bloodwork check would be done. She was diganosed with advanced dementia and they said that she needed to be put in a nursing home since it would be too much for me to take care of her alone. Of course you all know how conflicted we become, plus how do I come up with the exorbitant amount for care with no income myself, they insisted there is some help available to apply for it, still it would be at least 400 or 500 a week! I don't know about you, but we don't have it, I was frantic. They said if It comes to push to shove that she would be made a ward of the state and they would take over her bank account and sell the house, which I found out would be difficult since I do have the right to life in Ireland and they can't remove me from the residence, but could collect the money upon my death from my estate, well all is bad in my book. I intend on leaving my money if I have any to an animal agency of my choice. They kept her for two months, I spoke to her everyday, and for God's sakes she sounded normal, go figure. Apparently she was getting lavish attention that she had sought in a negative way before, was on an antidepressant, and said she was eating well, the food was good. She implored me to get her home, despite saying she was happy there, she wanted to come home and be with me and be in her own home. Of course she emphatically stated that she never had said anything bad about me, did not know why the police came, etc. I just went with the flow. In this time the neighbor across the street, who knew where my mother was before me, who visited her without taking me, knowing fully well I have no transportation, don't know where the hell I am, and this place is about fifty miles away, a short trip of 180 euros by cab which is way over 200 dollars, this was the woman who insulted me by telling me I had to make amends to the nursing staff to get my mother home. I told her that I did nothing to require making amends, that I was the one abused and hurt in this situation. She came over my house and I told her I did not want to talk to her, her son had told me that I didn't love my mother because I left her in this respite place, and if I loved her I would go and get her. I was hurt, stunned yet again, I told him they will not let me take my mother home that they have a mandate to ensure her safety and she is diagnosed with advanced dementia. He continued to tell me this was nonsense she is fine just age. I looked at him, and said, you just don't believe me, I will not hurt myself trying to convince you, I am done with you. His mother came by my house at 10PM as I said above drunk. She stunk of wine, it repelled me. She said she wanted me to get my mother out of the home for Christmas and she wanted me and my mother over for dinner. I was disgusted because she did not hear anything I was telling her, so finally she left. She called again, and I told her to stop bullying me, bye.

On Friday, after many daily calls to this home, the nursing director agreed to a trial home placement, she said she MIGHT consider it. I went and met with this panel of social workers, doctors and nurses and told them among many things that I knew it would be most challenging having my mother home, but she is 84, I have no idea as we all have no idea how much longer I will have her around. I want to be with her for the time she has left, warts and all, and realize the work, but I also need help to do it.

They agreed, they arranged for my mother to go to a senior day center a few hours five days a week, she can get showered there, they will pick her up, she will get tea and scones on arrival, can socialize, they have activities and she thrives around people like she did in the respite center. They will give her a three course meal, and she will have tea and cake before she comes home. This will cost about 80 dollars or 50euros a week, so much better than the money we don't have for a nursing home. So, I won't have to worry about making a big dinner for five days during the week. Her medication was reworked, she is no longer on antidpressant, but is taking dementia meds. They said they want to ensure that I don't get worn out and go down hill, they want to remove as much of a burden as possible, I am open to help,all and any.

I told them there will come a time, when she will have to go in the nursing home, when I can no longer help her, but for now it is what it is. I told them I wish I had come back sooner to see my father when he knew me, yesterday December 23rd was his two year death, hard time for me and mom. When I came back to see him from USA in 2010 mom was wearing pumps and cooking, after he died she went teetering down hill.

It has been really hard, exhausting as a matter of fact like you all know, and some of you have so much harder circumstances than I do have. I just am now trying to work on establishing a routine. Today, I seem to have got it going better, I get up at 8AM and get dressed, showered, etc, give her a pre breakfast pill while she stays in bed till I am ready. I get her up have breakfast ready, she had cereal, sausages, toast, juice, coffee, fresh fruit ( this is the lady who says she does not have much of an appetite LOL), then I gave her my first shower of my life. We did well, I was surprised. She got fresh clothes and is sitting watching her crime shows on TV with her Christmas sweater on looking happy, comfortable and clean, me I am exhausted, I think once I have my routine down, it will get easier, like starting a new job.

During the time she was in the respite center, I started to declutter the place as best I could, I had to regroup, rebalance, process, grieve. The episode of Hoarders is looking better, I can breathe again in here, I just get nervous around dirt, clutter, I just can't think in such chaos.

So, that is what is new with me, I am doing it one day at a time, it is a great deal of hard work, but I am ready and willing to accept whatever help I can get.

Merry Christmas to all of you and God's speed to all of us that have chosen to take on the most difficult of jobs with so very little to no support, and no thanks. Hope there is a Caregiver's unit in heaven for all of us.
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Hi Madeaa, sounds like they will take the house for her care. I wonder if her neighbors believe that this is best for her. If they do, I wonder what you will do? Please try to figure out how to get out of this all in one piece. Very difficult situation. I will wish really hard that something good happens for you. HUGS!!!
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Okay, I am somewhat stronger than the day I was waiting for the doctor who said she is lucid and clear. No sleep, can't eat, sick to my stomach, my eyes are sore, my whole body aches from my heart to my toes. So, here goes, the doctor calls the next day to tell me my mother has advanced dementia, hello, I was astounded by him. I said I can not believe that you did not see this in her, would not address the two times I talked to you. Frankly doctor with all due respect I have no confidence in your abilities to take care of me or my mother. He said, umm, well, sorry, it was a surprise. I said well I want my mother out of this respite place, he said he is no longer her doctor, she is now under this place's charge. WHAT THE F.

So, I get several calls from the respite center after pulling teeth for each tiny piece of information. It went from the Tribunal panel, to it has been cancelled, you don't have to come all the way out here, it is far, I have ankle osteoarthritis, if I jam my foot or walk to much, I am on crutches, I can ride my bike, I just got to be careful with it or I am off it for a week or two. I know it gets better each minute.

So, I am what the HELL, Limbo, I call the lawyer that did the will, no response, I have been searching for an elder care lawyer, found one in Dublin east coast of Ireland, hundreds and hundreds of miles away, I am on the south west coast.

So, apparently, here they think it is fine for the public health nurse or social workers to just show up without even calling.

I get a visit from two social workers, who want to hear my story. I gave it to them, it almost killed me the emotional wringer they put me through. They said they would get back to me with some financial worker to tell me my options, I said fine. I am afraid that they want to take this house and use my mother's money towards nursing. What is going on.

Next day the social worker on the phone, frankly, I don't have an ounce left in me, I said, you need to back off and give me some space, I can't meet with you right now, I am not emotionally fit to go through this right now, she said fine I will give you a couple of days.

I don't want to talk to her or him right now, I want to get my spirit in balance, I want to emotionally and spiritually get myself in balance, I want to strenghthen myself and untagle this victimhood. I am a fighter not a wimp, but they got me against the ropes, like the Knights of Nee in Monthy python, they got me down to just my head, I cry out it is a mere flesh wound, come back you coward. I got to find that spirit again, I feel bullied by these people and pressurized.

So, I will take my time and talk to them when I am ready. I call my mother at this place to see how she is every day, they have her on seroquel. Oh Lord.

Thanks for listening to my incoherent rant, you guys help me so much.
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My first take is that your mom is Maybe having dementia. It would be best to have her diagnosed. The neighbors view you as an outsider – therefore they will believe your mother all the time – blinded by the truth. You may or may not be able to persuade them. If anything, they might think you are trying to persuade them to join you against her. If your religion does not forbid you to mix with other religion, are you able to attend their church? This way, you get to meet the locals and they get to meet you? Don’t be disappointed if the locals consider you as an outsider. Here on island, an outsider is finally considered a local when he has stayed long enough to embrace our customs and not try to force us to accept HIS. They talk like we talk, eat what we eat, and do what we do. I have known some “white” people who have been on this island and have done lots of good things for our island. But, you can tell that they have NOT accepted this island as their home. Those people, in our eyes, our outsiders – even if they’ve been here for 50 years.

As for the medical community, your mom made claims that you abused her. Of course they will NOT say anything to you. Even if she’s diagnosed with dementia, there will be still be some doubt in there. Just as here in the states, if you go to any doctor and try to get a parent diagnosed with dementia – they will shrug it off as “old age.” But if you find a regular doctor who Knows something of elderly care, then you are fortunate. For example, I just took my bedridden mom to meet her new doctor. I knew from the onset he has No Idea of elderly care! I had to give him some pointers…When I came home, I told father that we will need to find another doctor. A doctor familiar with Current Elderly issues will be able to spot the “unusual” behavior and not dismiss it as “old age.”

Therefore I agree with JessieBelle. It’s best to find an eldercare lawyer. Not just any lawyer. For example, a corporate lawyer specializes in corporate laws, a divorce lawyer knows the ins/outs of getting the best for their client when it comes to divorces. There are different kinds of doctors but there are those who are specialized. That’s what you need with your lawyer – one who specializes with elders or is familiar with it.

But my most Important Advice to YOU: PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH WHAT LITTLE YOU HAVE IN YOUR SAVINGS! You will need this money for EMERGENCY. Please, find a job as soon as possible. Even if it means waiting on tables at a Decent restaurant. Please do not be desperate and find a job at a "unsavory" or "disreputable" place. Try to build up your savings. I am soooo sorry that you're in this situation. HUGS!!!!
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what i dont understand is that i hear the same thing, elderly often say caregivers are abuseing them and people still belive the elderly person without even checking if the claims are true!
'oh, mr. so and so is so nice, how can you be so mean? or he wouldnt lie, thats not like him, umm, hello, the older they get the more their minds go, the more they blame the caregiver but people get all up in arms without even checking to see if its abuse or lonley elderly wanting attention! all claims of abuse should be checked out, but CHECK OUT ALL SIDES before running a poor , frazzled caregiver into needing care themselfs! pretty soon nobody will be a caregiver if were going to go to jail everytime an elderly parents says abuse when its never been true.
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