Mom plots to run away...with her ex-husband!


My MIL and her ex-husband plotted to run away today...after we graciously opened our home to him for overnight visits. They divorced in secret in 2016 for a very stupid reason (he thought he wouldn't have to pay taxes anymore, and according to our estate attorney - he is in for a very large, not so nice surprise in the very near future). Then he kicked her out of his home that she had lived in for 18 years this past October so we moved her in with us, an hour and a half away. He drove out to see her yesterday and they planned to just leave while I was at work today even though we have appointments out near our home that he would be unable to take her to.

He is not the only occupant in that home and the other 2 people that live there (his adult son and the son's girlfriend) do not want mom moving back in because she is rude to them and very derogatory towards them overall. We are unable to make mom or the ex understand that their opinions are not the only ones that matter.

I am tired of having the same exact argument on a daily basis only for them to both try and deceive myself and my husband. We have worked so hard to help them be together as often as possible, only for ourselves to be played like a violin. I lost a lot of respect for my former FIL last night when I looked him in the eye and called him out on it....he couldn't meet my eyes in return.

Mom has dementia and is believed to be in the early stages of Alzheimers (we still have some diagnostic testing to get done and neuropsych eval to establish a baseline), Pete is 15 years her senior and has his own health issues that do also include some memory loss but that has been attributed to normal aging deterioration. We had to inform them both that the reality of this siuation is that there is no "getting better" from her condition, only working to maintain and/or slow the disease's symptoms. My husband and myself have somewhat danced around mom's condition because it upsets her to acknowledge it but they crossed a line last night that I am sure will be crossed again (unfortunately). On good days mom knows she has a dx and plainly acknowledges her memory loss, on other days she wonders why she can't remember anything.

In the end, we agreed to let her visit at his home until Saturday...when we plan to sit down and have the same discussion we had last night only with his son and the girlfriend present this time around. Fortunately, they communicate well with myself and my husband!

We have worked so hard not to violate her rights but I will not stand for being lied to in my home while I am missing work for appointments, arranging others to spend days there when I have to be at work, offering other day care options (which are always declined). Is there even a way to enforce that she does NOT live in that home but in ours?

PS - an hour after I went to bed, mom had to balls to come into my room to ask if I was asleep because she wanted to know HOW I knew they were plotting to run away. Like it wasn't written all over both of their faces. ARRRGGHHHHH!!!!!!!! LOL!

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Pete! That's the feller. Sorry.

You and your husband do indeed have a say about who stays in your house. May I recommend that in future that does not include the said Pete? You let him over the threshold, next thing you know mother is running back to the snake house, and are you taking bets on how conscientious she will be about returning for appointments?

She can make crappy decisions but you don't have to endorse them, let alone enable them.
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Short visits (few days at a time, between appointments) is the only compromise we were able to come up with and last night was Pete's first overnight at our house with mom leaving to stay there until Saturday. Meanwhile, we have visited his home many times since October and this was his first visit to ours. He has made ZERO effort until yesterday to see mom.

We have no problem with her spending time there and made it very clear that at least until all appointments are done, she will have to split her time between our homes. Myself & hubby are ok with this compromise as WE also need time for ourselves on occasion.

Countrymouse is right...she's not been declared incompetent, she can make that bad decision but don't the other occupants in the home have a say who else lives there? I feel like even though they tell me and my husband no they aren't comfortable with her there, they don't say the same to Pete because the son is apparently afraid to confront his father about anything as Pete has a bad temper and everything has to be handled delicately so as not to incite an 86 year old's temper tantrum.

I do not treat Pete with kid gloves. Ever. & I likely never will. I told him last night that I am very direct and don't mince words, I will say things as I see them, I will not keep secrets or tell lies on his behalf and that I expect the same in return.
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So it seems to me the answer is to try to coordinate short visits for when she has no appointments, with everyone involved understanding that she returns to your house at the end of the weekend (or whatever days you choose). That way nobody has to sneak around, you aren't the bad guy, and when either one starts whining you just need to point to the schedule.
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Same one!  Pete is the name.  Do the other residents in that home (the son, who's name is the only one on the house deed) not have a say about who resides there? Because it is a resounding NO from them but they are open to short visits.
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Is their any way you can get Pete's son to work with you so that you could coordinate visits etc? It seems to me that he and GF wouldn't be eager for your mom to move back.
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Hang on. This isn't the woman with the partner of 18 years and he kicked her out and now she's come home and they both really really want to be together but he - Phil, is it? - signed the house over to his son and the son's girlfriend and you and your husband hate to see them both pining for one another but he wants chickens and won't move somewhere more practical..?

Unless and until MIL is evaluated and found to be incompetent, it is up to her where she lives. If she wants to be an idiot, you can't stop her.
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