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My concern is that some of these neighbors are on the board in the condos and have the power to make decisions and have tendencies towards bossiness. They seem to be paying attention to how often I am doing laundry (daily) and asking if mom is incontinent, etc. I am re-luctant to give them a full report as it seems to me this would be inviting them into areas of our life that are none of their business.
I live with my mom, who will be 96 yrs. in April. It IS getting more challenging mostly due to staying on top of the toileting issues but I am hiring help more often, mostly cause I am getting more burned out. Overall Mom seems to be doing pretty well actually.
Cadams

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I'd look at them a bit taken aback and ask why in the world they would be asking about such a personal matter.
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Do you really need to be gracious?

"Is your mother incontinent?"
"Why on earth would you ask just a personal question?"
or
"If she were, is that against the rules?"
or
"Thank you so much for your interest in Mom's health. Her doctor says she is doing well. Of course, I cannot reveal confidential information."
or
"We're doing just fine in the condo Mom has owned for three decades."
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"Why do you ask?" If they do have a good reason for asking, they'll tell you. And if they know they're out of line, hopefully they'll go away and mind their own business.
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I would have mom give me a POA and I would take that with me to the next HOA meeting. In fact I would attend EVERY meeting, because you know darn well they are attempting to trash her at the meetings. If they ask about diapers, ask them what brand THEY use. Watch their jaws drop, LOL. Ask what meds THEY take, ask how long THEY have had Alzheimer's. Once they see you do this, they will run away when they see you coming....
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To add - I've found that an icy stare while asking a terse "excuse me?" often makes people aware they've just said something not right. Then again, there have been the oblivious dumba**es who repeat it.
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"Is your mother continent?"

"We're managing, thank you. Are you?"
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The only answer is that you have things under control and then thank them for their inquiry. Nothing is worse than letting HOA busybodies get any information that is not required. Read up on the CC&R's - understand what the rules are and that will help you understand the intrusive questions are not part of their job, nor is it appropriate. At the same time, you don't want them to start a whispering campaign - sometimes all it takes is one person who likes to stir the pot to cause all kinds of trouble. Insofar as you and your mother's lives, she is entitled to age in place in her own home. Be pleasant and direct - don't challenge them. HOA boards are breeding grounds for bullies and fines are a way of filling the HOA coffers - give them no excuse and they'll look elsewhere for someone to intimidate.
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It's just none of their business. Period. And you should tell them so.
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Be very careful about flashing around a POA or discussing anything financial. Not only should you never give out too much info, showing a POA can be a disaster if it is an HOA. Understand that these people will outwit you because you are not looking for trouble - but often those who ask intrusive questions are. The question goes back to who is competent, is your mom still in charge if it's her home and she's on the deed, and the real question *why are you there*.....people can invent all manner of things and stir up trouble. Keep your legal documents and agreements you have w/ your mom private. Just stay firm polite and in control - anything else and they will find a way to mess with youj.
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cadams, just because someone asks a rude or personal question doesn't mean they are entitled to an answer, much less an honest one. Think of it as acting - you adopt a pleasant, superficially upbeat demeanor and play the game.
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