Wife has 2 children (independently wealthy) and 5 grandchildren (all professional with good income). All have turned their backs on us. We are slowly dying without support. Do we have any recourse here?

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Hi Erwash, you are getting some comments here that you probably don’t like. However you say that you “Gave up on regular doctor, then gerontologist, then elder care specialist, then az/dementia specialist. None of them knows what they are doing”. You also say that all the local agencies are “severely lacking in experience, competence and general caring”. It sounds as though you don’t like a lot of things that most people find helpful. Perhaps your children and grandchildren find you difficult to deal with?

It might be best if you ask for financial help rather than close contact. However as everyone in the family seems to have good jobs, income and assets, you might need to put together the sort of financial information that a bank or loan company would want, to explain what you need and why.

It isn’t easy getting old, or dealing with people who are getting old. I hope that you and your wife can find some happiness.
Helpful Answer (25)
Poster does seem very difficult to deal with. Who knows the history between them and their children. There's always two sides to every story, and perception is not reality. Poster asked how he could "force" them to help. Perhaps therein lies the problem with their children.
Recourse? No. There is no legal obligation for adult children to financially support their parents. Same with grandkids and grandparents.

If both of your wife’s children and the adult grandchildren have cut ties with her, there has to be a reason. Usually the one who is cut off seems to never know why. Not saying it’s all due to your wife, but something has happened along the way for it to be like this.
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So I am going to make an assumption and make loads of people mad.

From er responses, he is the only one in the room that knows anything, he also stated that his wife's children have endowments, so that means their dad had money, financially set his children up for future and that means that he left his wife financially secure. If she has alienated her children by marrying the poster, it means they thought he was after her money. I say that because that is what he is now trying to do with them. You have it stepchildren and now I am entitled to force you to fork over anything I say we need, because no one, not even doctors know as much as me. So pay up and avoid a lawsuit, if I can figure out how to sue you. Mom is on Medicaid and poster obviously doesn't get a good pension or ss for that matter. Mom probably was a stay at home mom and 1st husband left her secure enough to not worry that she would run out of money, never considering that she would remarry and forfeit his ss benefits she received. Then enter husband #2 who blew through all of her financial future because, hey her kids have money and we will force them to pay up when she is broke. He just didn't bargain for healthy children that can set and enforce boundaries, but he won't know about those things.

Sounds like the wife isn't the only one with loss of executive function. When anyone believes that they are the only ones that know anything you are dealing with dementia and/or NPD. Terrible situation for the poor woman that can no longer make her own choices.
Helpful Answer (23)
Somewhere in all of this, his children feel the same way. It is a second marriage for both. Appears not a lot of financial planning on their part, just sue kids and grandchildren and force them to pay.
ER, you sound angry and either nobody knows anything or they are not available or there are no services or the kids don't care. Maybe you need to listen to some of the resources and what they have to say. Do the kids also feel they don't know anything?

Maybe counseling would help you, but you would have to LISTEN to what they have to say.
Helpful Answer (21)

Parents make a choice to have children and make a choice of what level of involvement they want with grandchildren. They aren’t “forced” to do these things. These choices also do not create a “debt” to be repaid when they are older. Caring for elderly parents or supporting them financially is a choice for adult children or grandchildren to make.
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You say you can’t afford respite care and your wife is on Medicaid. Good news-Florida Medicaid pays for respite care. You should contact Medicaid and arrange for respite care.
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Hello erwash - first of all, I am so sorry that your wife has dementia, now at the late stage. It must be so difficult taking care of her by yourself without help. I don't know how you do it. You must have a lot of patience and love for her to be able to endure the caregiving job for four grueling years and counting, and without help. My hats off to you.

I am also so sorry that your wife's children and grandchildren are not helping her. There must be reasons for that but that doesn't matter at this point. If they don't want to help, even if there are some laws that force them to, I don't know if it's worth the fight and the time to go after them.

Here are some places you should call:
--your local Aging Agency, sometimes called Office on Aging
--Adult Protective Services
--local hospital and ask for a social worker
--local Alzheimer's/dementia support group
--local Adult Daycare center and ask to talk to a social worker if they have one
--an attorney specializes in elder law who can help you apply for Medicaid
--Veteran Affairs (if you or your wife had been in the service)

When you call these places, explain your situation and ask them for help or referral to resources that you can apply to help you and your wife.

Do come back and let us know what you find out.
Helpful Answer (18)
erwash Apr 2019
Have done all of the above, mostly to no avail. I can comment on each one, but will just generally qualify them all as severely lacking in experience, competence and general caring.
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erwash - you sound hopeless and bitter. I don't know why you say those resources we mentioned here (Aging Agency, social worker, etc.) are not helpful. I am sure in Florida, there are thousands of elderly who need help just like you, and I bet somehow they manage to find the right help.

You mentioned your wife have Medicaid. Since your wife is at stage 4 of dementia, ask her doctor if she is qualified to be in a nursing home. If so, the doctor can order that. Then, she can be looked after 24/7, and you can visit daily to make sure she's being well taken care of.

Also, have to talked to an elder law attorney? This is for the purpose of getting the type of Medicaid that will pay for nursing home.

If where you live is so isolated and no competent help and services available, then you should consider relocating to where there are better services.
Helpful Answer (17)

I can see why many of you believe erwash is a troll, but I'm not sure he is. Unfortunately his attitude is similar to what I experienced with my father during his vascular dementia. Dad grew up as the son of the town drunk (alcohol and phenobarbital) who would not support his family and heard often how he would never amount to anything. He took great pride during childhood in making the best marks at school, probably because it was the first place he could "win" over children from "better" families who were expected to amount to something. One month after his 15th birthday, Dad went to work supporting the family his father would not. Even while working full time, he got a GED and took selected college classes that could help him with work related tasks. His house was filled with books that he called opportunities to "learn from someone else's experience". He had a big chip on his shoulder all his life; the refusal to accept the voices that predicted he would never amount to anything would also become a refusal to accept warnings or advice from others. He considered himself "smarter than the average bear" and did do better financially with his 8th grade formal education than many of his complementaries did with completed high school and college educations. Because of his neglectful and abusive childhood home, Dad had paranoid personality disorder and never really trusted anyone. After every doctor visit, he came home and researched the prescriptions for the side effects - usually deciding not to take the medication or not take as much. He really thought he could make better medical decisions than any doctor. Dad went through dozens of doctors seeking someone "competent" and had liquidity problems in his later years, mostly because he would spent his money on "investments" before paying the monthly bills.

I think it's very possible that erwash has some form of dementia, maybe vascular like my father, on top of a life long personality disorder or other emotional dysfunction. He most likely really needs someone to interface with the SWs for him because his "style" is likely to demand a specific action/remedy and when someone tells him that specific option isn't available, label them incompetent and move on searching for someone who can deliver what he wants. Being insulting to the "incompetent" people who don't agree with him has become a coping method - nothing wrong with him, it's all those other people. Posters here may be able to give workable advice but it falls on deaf ears because OP is no longer capable of making reasonable compromises or dealing with the rules/requirements needed to get the needed help. Mostly likely all we can do is pray for him and his wife. Pray that when one of them comes in contact with a hospital SW, they will finally get some help.
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He says there are no social workers in his area. Go figure. What a croc. Florida certainly has social workers.

You make a good point about dementia. Glad your father’s situation was addressed.
This thread has been like a dark cloud. Usually there is a silver lining in a dark cloud if we look for it. Here is my silver lining that I see in this disturbing post, we are all going to die one day and when that time comes for me, I do not ever want to be as miserable as the OP seems to be! I will NEVER make my children feel like they OWE me anything. I am responsible for my life, not THEM.

We can be struggling through challenging circumstances and be sad or unhappy and still find joy in our hearts about something! I don’t ever want to leave this world looking at life in total misery because I don’t have everything I want like a spoiled child.
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