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My mother-in-law is 90; suffers from mid-level dementia as well as multiple maladies attributed to aging. She is becoming less and less cooperative more and more self absorbed. She has lived with us for approx. 18 months since my father-in-law died. My wife is her eldest child of three and has assumed the role of caretaker and POA. We appear to be having more personality issues that medical at this point. My mother-in-law had always been a strong willed individual who was use to being in control. She can be manipulative and eager to use guilt as a motivator. She also is expecting of getting her way simply " because you love her". She refuses to go weekly 4 hr. adult daycare for us because she "doesn't want to." My wife needs a break, but is not yet ready to move her into a facility permanently. My mother-in-law seems to not be willing or able to accept that she has few options. Neither of the other children is able or willing to take a turn having mom live with them. My mother-in-law is becoming more child-like in how she is dealing with our situation. Any suggestions regarding how to handle getting her to restbit? Do we have any legal options that would help us get her into a facility for either the short term or permanent stay?

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If you haven't done so, start looking at care facilities in your area. The staff can give you a basic idea of what level of care mil needs. When you find a suitable place they can send a staff person to do an evaluation on your mil to pin down her exact needs.

Most places offer respite care, usually on a monthly basis. Many elders are eased into care using this " trial" basis. You may even convince mil to visit a facility with you. I was pleasantly surprised at my Moms pleasant reaction to the place I took her forba tour.

The staff from these facilities are usually quite helpful. They seen it all and know how to charm elders and help you use some healthy deception to get things moving.

Currently, your family is her only outlet for complaints and her unhappiness. In a care facilty there are all sorts of activities and interaction with other people. It would be good for her and good for your family.
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You wrote that your wife isn't ready to place her mom in a facility but you want to know if there is any way to get her into a facility. Is placing your MIL in a facility an option?

There are some facilities that offer respite services for families. For example, a weekend where your MIL would go and stay so you and your family can get a break. Not all facilities offer this and I'm not sure of the cost but it's worth looking into.

Then there's guardianship where your wife would obtain legal guardianship over her mom. It's a lengthy and very costly process but in some situations it's appropriate.

I'm sure your MIL doesn't realize that she has few options. The longer the dementia goes on the less options the person has. It's very sad.
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