Follow
Share

We're currently treading in unfamiliar territory. My mother and father in law recently moved into an independent living apartment at our insisting after she took a fall and was hospitalized. We didn't find out she was in the hospital until 3 days later because he never called us or asked the hospital to contact us. My father in law is in his mid 80's and very controlling of my mother in law. He's just a horrible, manipulative person, and I believe his mind is slipping. We're terribly concerned that he will not make the right decisions for her when her health begins to fail, and in her absence there's no way he could handle anything financial. Not only would he make the wrong decisions in our eyes, we're just not sure he's even capable of making sound decisions. We have asked my mother in law on numerous occasions to sign the Power of Attorney over to my wife. In fact a POA was required prior to moving into the apartment, but she never filled it out. She knows that we would always make sure she's cared for properly and that her best interests would always be our priority. Still yet, she has not filled out the paper work and won't talk about it because he might hear her. We would love some advice on what to do. We're very afraid something is going to happen and we're going to be unable to ensure her proper care. Our constant nagging for her to fill out the form is going nowhere and just creating stress on both sides.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
This is so typical of old men. He is probably developing dementia and the attendant stubborness that often comes with it. Guess I shouldn't assign gender, many old ladies are the same, but men are so used to being in control and feel threatened when anyone tries to intervene for their own good. It sounds like Mom is very submissive to him and it all adds up GP one tough nut to crack.

The only way I was successful with my Dad a couple of years ago was to totally frame the disscussion of POAs and finanancial access in terms of "Down the road" or, "In case something happens" . He thinks Mom does all the bills and banking and doesn't have a clue that I've been doing it from 3 states away for over a year.

The well may already be poisoned but you might convince mom to stand up to dad a little using the Just In Case logic.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Another thought - does he ever go to a doctor? If so, you could spirit MIL away for at least long enough to talk to the IL staff about a POA.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Maybe it's time to divide and conquer? Can you spend some time with FIL while your wife spends time with her mother to accomplish even just a basic conversation about her planning needs? And she doesn't even have to tell her husband; once the POA is executed, you'll have conformed copies, and you can provide them to the IL staff but not to her husband.

Are there any guy type activities that you could take FIL to? A woodworking show, gun show....maybe even just to Home Depot or Lowe's? Then he wouldn't have any idea how or where your MIL spent her time. She could go to an attorney's office and be back before he knew she was gone.

Of the IL staff could be helpful in diverting his attention as well if there are activities that he enjoys.

And sometimes elders do listen more to others than they do to their own family.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Thank you for the response. I don't think she's confused, I think she's just afraid he'll be upset if she takes the power of attorney away from him, as her husband. I also think he's filled her head about the possibility of us taking over decisions and preventing them from spending their own money while she's still capable of making those decisions on her own. Clearly the point of the POA is for the time when she is not capable of making those decisions.

I think the idea of speaking to an attorney or the staff at the independent living facility is probably a good idea. I think she needs to hear from someone other than us. The difficult part is that he rarely lets her out of his site. It's a complex situation. Thank you so much for the input.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Do you think she's confused, uncertain, or afraid of her husband's finding out if she did sign?

Perhaps you could take her, just her, out for lunch, having made an appointment to later stop by the office of the attorney who drafted the POA and have her explain it to your mother. That could go either way - she might feel more comfortable without her husband being there, or she could also feel pressured.

It could also just be an informational meeting during which the attorney explains to her the need to have protective documents in place in the event of an emergency.

You might also contact her doctors, if you know who they are, and the hospital to which she was taken after her fall and ask for HIPAA forms which your mother could also sign while at the attorney's office - just away from her husband so he doesn't give her grief for signing.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter