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I'm writing for my Mother in Law who is in a world of pain. She and her husband have moved in with her Mother who is 89 to be her caretaker. My Mother in Law and Father in Law are miserable and feel trapped. There is no one else to watch after this woman. Her mother is showing signs of dementia, not remembering people, can't remember to take her medication. She also says weird things and tells people that my mother in law and father in law won't feed her and yesterday, she told someone that they hit her on the head. These are completely outrageously false. My mother in law and father in law are staying with her in her teeny house and wish to purchase a large house for them to all live in. However, when they bring this up to her mother, the mother starts crying like a baby and pitching a fit. I think they just need to let her have her fit and do what makes them happy. After all, they are caring for this selfish, miserable woman. Does anyone have a similar situation or can help guide us? Thank you!

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Being friends with your MIL in my view is a good thing. You said she is in pain. Is this physical pain? If so it is high time for her to give up the caregiving roll. Definitely do not invest any of GMs money in a new home as Medicaid will be after that. let GM pay for extra care and supplies that she needs this is legitimate use of GM's money. Agree with all the above GM needs to be living in a more supportive environment. Whatever the inlaws do it is not going to satisfy GM, she will continue to pitch a fit, hurl acusations and be generally obstructive but they own the house so they have the power and have to exercise it or suffer the consequences or shut up. Unless GM can be drugged into submission she will not agree to anything and I guess people are against the overuse of medications to modify behavior in the elderly.
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I disagree with not listening to your MIL. I was very close to my exes father...closer than his own kids were to him. His wife was killing him and stressing me out due to her manipulative behavior and lies. If we didnt have each other to vent to, he would have been in the grave earlier and I probably would have lost ot worse than I did. As long as your MIL trusts you, I think its good she has someone to talk to.
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Yes, Kelly. Draw your boundaries closer in. It is not your role, imo, to hear your Mil problems.
Perhaps you have already experienced some division or stress on you and your husband's relationship with your involvement in this dynamic.

Whatever will you do with the extra time you will have left over to have a great life?
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Sendme2help...yes, it is my husband's mother who is caring for her mother. Do you say Beware because perhaps I'm overstepping my boundaries here? I've wondered. My MIL tells me all her problems but doesn't seem to be taking any of this advice.
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Beware Kelly10. Beware.
This is your husband's mother?
She is caring for her mother?
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Kelly, if Grandma signed over the house, they are stuck taking care of her for at least five years. Medicaid won't pay for her care if she gave away the house.
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My experience with this type of person has jaded me some so for what it is worth...you and your husband need to have a heart to heart with his parents. They need to leave the situation and put her in a facility. Dealing with the unfounded accusations and fits will wear on her sanity. I am not trying to go against what others are saying but there is a point you need to let go.
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Kelly10, while your parents have been doing the honorable thing of caring for your Grandmother, we do have to accept, that sometimes, we just aren't all cut out to be long term 24/7 caregivers, and that sometimes, the Loved ones needs are beyond our scope of care. As above, having your Grandmother evaluated by a Geriatric Physician to determine her type of Dementia is a very good idea, to get her on the proper meds, to help stabilize her condition, plu meds to help her to be mor manageable and of course, to rule out any other disease issues is imperative. Your parents also need to do sme serious soul searching to decide if Grandma may be better off in a Memory care/dementia care facility. If Grandma has no money besides her SS, then she may qualify for Medicaid, making it possible for her to get into a Medicaid facility. You might also want to check out your states Area on Aging, as every state has one, but sometimes they go by a slightly different name. Use the search box on this site to find othe care options for your area. Its wonderful that you are helping to advocate for your parents, your a very nice daughter yourself! Take care and good luck!
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Hi, I should mention, the home they are all living in is owned by my parents in law. They fully support my grandmother in law. They only want to purchase a larger house for them to all live in because this house they're all in now used to be just my Grandmother in law's but they moved in to take care of her because she needs 24 hour care. My Grandmother in law won't even let my Mother in Law visit her children or grandchildren and insists on being with her at all times.
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Kelly, your Grandmother-in-law needs to have a visit with her primary doctor. Something as simple as a urinary tract infection can make someone her age act out, say crazy things, accuse others of hitting, etc, this happens in both men and women.

If it isn't urinary tract infection, then it sounds like more than first or second stage dementia. Sadly there isn't anything one can do but deal with this journey. But there are meds to calm her down. This is only going to get worse, much worse.

As for moving into a larger house that's ok if none of Grandmother-in-law's money was used in the purchase. But as her dementia gets worse, then your in-laws will need to hire paid caregivers to help, as this will be too much work for your mom-in-law to deal with. Would they have enough money to do that?

I would scratch the idea of getting a larger house and look for Assisted Living for your Grandma-in-law, as she will need a higher level of care before too long, especially if she starts falling. The way I look at it, for each year an older gets older, it is more like 10 years. They can go downhill pretty quickly.
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pfontes16, I am so glad that having your father live with you is fulfilling. Cargiving often is very rewarding and life-enhancing.

I think the in-laws in this post are in a somewhat different situation than you do. They are not in their own home, but in a too-small space that they intended to be temporary until they all moved into something bigger. AND -- this is huge -- they are dealing with dementia. They are dealing with a loved one who is accusing them of dreadful things. This is probably new and a big shock to them. If they are feeling like they want their life back I wouldn't stand in judgment of them.

ALL caregiving is hard, difficult, challenging, and stressful. Caregiving someone with dementia is in a class by itself! It too can be rewarding and life-enhancing but it can also be beyond the skill and endurance of loving relatives.

It is good to keep in mind that each situation posted here is unique.
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Being Grandma's caregiver sounded like the right and kind and dutiful thing to do, I'm sure, until they actually did it and now feel trapped. Poor things. Poor Grandma, too.

I agree with pfontes that GM needs to see a doctor. If she doesn't have one I strongly suggest a geriatrician. Getting a diagnosis will help everyone know what to expect. With dementia the symptoms will change over time. Dementia is progressive, meaning it gets worse.

I also suggest that your in-laws take a crash course in dementia. There is an amazing amount of information available on this website, on the sites of dementia organizations such as Alzheimer's and Lewy Body and Parkinson, etc. It will help them not to take accusation personally, for example, to know that this is common.

If GM is accusing them of elder abuse this could be a Big Deal, even though the accusations have no basis in fact. This is another reason for seeing a doctor and documenting GM's cognitive decline.

Before taking any additional drastic steps, like buying a different house, your in-laws should definitely consult an Elder Law attorney (with GM's money). This is especially true if GM has limited funds and might need to apply for Medicaid some day. Even if she is very wealthy an attorney who specialized in Elder Law can provide very valuable guidance and help ensure that all the ducks are in a row concerning things like POA and Advance Directive. The lawyer can also advise about protecting themselves against false abuse accusations.

Your poor in-laws! They were only trying to do the loving thing!
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PS - This isn't about your in-laws getting their life "back" - this IS their life for the time being. My 90-year-old father lives with me now that my mother passed away. Did I ever think I'd be a caretaker to my elderly parent? - NO. Would I ever consider any other life now that my father needs me? - NO.

My life with Papa, as difficult and frustrating as it can sometimes be, is worth 10 times more than my life would be if Papa was in a nursing home. I don't want my life "back." I want to cherish the time I have with my father and be there to help him enjoy every minute he's got left. My life will be better from here on out because of it.

Perhaps your in-laws share those familial values.
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Take Grandma to the doctor & get a diagnosis. She might not be a selfish, miserable woman - she might have dementia or Alz. She's 89. She has earned the right to be cantankerous if she pleases,,,but there are MANY things that could be seriously wrong that cause the symptoms you describe. This is a difficult time for seniors, as well and the lady might actually need assisted living.

And please try to remember that Grandma is your mother-in-law's MOTHER. Your M-I-L is not only struggling with her own life change, but with perhaps with conflicting feelings about taking care of her mama.

If Grandma is needed to financially help with purchasing a bigger house - perhaps your in-laws need to re-think that plan. Asking an elder who clearly has some dementia going on to "invest" in housing everyone is taking advantage of the elder and may not even be legal. If your in-laws have the money, perhaps they could buy a larger home close by and slowly transition Grandma - if Grandma doesn't need assisted living.
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