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My mother-in-law lives ~7 hours away from us. We recently moved her into an Independent Living Senior building. This is part of a large campus with assisted living, memory care living and rehab available. It took some convincing to get her to leave her home and she seems to be enjoying her new living arrangements. However, as we've spent a considerable amount of time with her during the past 2 years we realize that she is suffering from worsening dementia. She's mean (totally out of character), obsessive and paranoid. She used to have a neighbor that checked on her daily, but now she's more on her own. She could hire a "companion" to visit daily, cook a meal, etc.. but refuses, saying she doesn't need it. My husband has POA and I want him to get put on her bank accounts as I don't totally trust her to keep her finances straight. There are 2 other sons in the picture but they rarely, if ever, even call her. How can we help her long distance? I'm at my wits end. Talking to her on the phone is an hour of frustration due to her hearing loss and confusion. Any info on resources would be greatly appreciated.

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If your mom is able to go to the bank and put your husband's name on the accounts, that would be great. My parents did this so I could access their bank accounts by computer. I did have to supply my driver's license and SS card, which I was able to scan and send by e-mail to the bank.
It is common for our adults with dementia to not realize that they need more help....that's part of the dementia. I would be more concerned about the behavior changes. If you don't have MPOA, I would work on getting that, so you can be in contact with her doctor regarding your concerns.

I actually think moving from Independent to Assisted Living would be a good idea. She would have more interaction with the staff and having some meals prepared for her might get here out of her room so she could make some friends. It's nice that she is in a place with a continuum of care. Best wishes!
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Thanks for the suggestions. At this point, I think she's able to cover the dementia. Probably because she doesn't realize how bad it's gotten. My husband has POA, but I thought he had to go with her to the bank to get put on her accounts. We'd be fine with doing her banking online.The establishment has all the necessary information as my husband and I filled out all of the forms. Since we're new at this one,of my questions would be: If we let the Independent Living supervisor know of our concerns regarding her mental state, can they insist she move into Assisted Living? At this point, I really think having someone visit her in the late afternoon/evening would be enough.
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I am amazed that she qualified for independent living. My MIL lives in one and she just needs a little help showering. Her meals are prepared. I am thinking that your MIL needs more care than she is getting. Can't she walk right out the door?

Yes, to getting POA. We have all of the bills (phone, dentist, doctor) come to our address. My husband writes the checks. Just have her address changed to yours.
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You keep in touch with the Independent Living managers. Be sure they have your immediate contact numbers. Bank accounts can be accessed online, and you can watch over her spending. You also stay in touch with her MD's. Be sure hubby has a health care proxy at the MD's office.
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Your husband must get POA asap. Then he must get access to all of her accounts, and get in touch with her doctors. You can't afford to wait any longer.
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