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I just became my dad's conservator. My mother is NOT happy about this. She is a narcissist who has controlled him for over 40 years. She is beside herself and is making every step of this initial process virtually impossible, taking his mail, taking his money, lying to him, turning him against me, etc. This is not good for my father or for myself emotionally. He's a victim of her emotional abuse as are my siblings and I. I want to take care of my father but, how can I go about this if he is tied to her hip and she is mentally ill but he still listens to her?

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First, file a change of address with the post office. Get a PO Box for your Dad...get his mail somewhere else.

Next, contact all the banks and credit cards. Send them copies of the legal documents that you are authorized on these account...then request new address change AND new cards.

If you cannot remove her name from these accounts...then open new accounts and move every dime you possibly can. Make an appointment with Social Security and give them copies of your documents. Get the deposit to the new account. Do the same with any and all pensions and annuities....basically anything making monthly deposits in your father's name. Make sure you find and notify brokerage accounts too.

Change the mailing address on everything. Contact the utilities, etc.

Yeah, huge amount of work..but as your fathers conservator you are obligated to take these steps because it is the only way you can act in good faith to serve your father's best interests.

Yeah..Mom is going to scream and yell. So be it. DO not invite an argument with her. Do not tell her in advance. When she screams about it, just say the legally you were bound by the law to do it.
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How did you become your father's conservator?

Presumably your mother opposed that from the beginning of the process. So how have you and your siblings successfully overcome her objections?

It seems that by presenting a united front you have already taken the key steps towards protecting your father. Now you need to gain increased, unobstructed access to his daily life in order to fulfil your responsibilities to him. So he's a done deal, so to speak: it's now your mother you all of you together need to tackle and, crucially, to help.

You say she is mentally ill - has there been any professional input into her care or support?
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Were you appointed conservator by a court?

After 40 years of marriage he doesn't know anything else and you will lose if you get into a battle of wills with your mother but not before becoming sick yourself from the stress of dealing with her.

If your conservatorship is legally binding talk to the lawyer who set it up and see if he knows of a way to bypass your mother. Your profile says that your dad is in a nursing home. If that's true at least that's a level playing field as opposed to your dad living at home with your mother.
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Dear xiomy00,

I'm so sorry this is an extremely difficult situation. Have you talked with a counselor or therapist about this? Do you think you can move your dad into assisted living or a nursing home?

After 40 years I know it would be hard for him to adapt, but hopefully you can talk to him and let him know what everything you do is meant to protect him.
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