My Mom lives in a mobile home and refuses to have an a/c installed. She's of sound mind but adamant. Advice? - AgingCare.com

My Mom lives in a mobile home and refuses to have an a/c installed. She's of sound mind but adamant. Advice?

Follow
Share

t's very hot in the summer. She refuses to give me POA. Mom handles all her finances and it is her mobile home. She is 92. She has casement windows that open side to side, and she doesn't like the way it would look to have a hose sticking out her windows if we move forward with a portable unit that I have ordered for her. She becomes very agitated and upset when something changes in her home. When the company came over last week to measure the window and discuss what the a/c would look like, she practically threw the guy out, along with me and her aide. I am afraid her aides will resign from her case due to her house being so hot, and I am worried about her breathing with the hot weather, but mom insists a fan is all she needs. This has been a very difficult situation along with many other situations I encounter with her. Mom is lucky to have aides assigned to her since she was discharged back home from a nursing rehab facility last year. I am her only child and I have been stressed to the max with mom being so difficult, adamant, and reluctant to change. Please help.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
18

Answers

Show:
On the issue of parents not listening to their daughters (or female relatives) but listening to men, I'm told by friends that children, young and adult can be the same way. Sometimes parents have their friends give children the advice they themselves would give if they weren't parents. Coming from Mom's or Dad's friend seems to mean more than from Mom or Dad themselves.

There's also still the attitude that men automatically know things in certain areas, such as fixing things, even though women are doing more of that kind of DIY work, and some even have handywoman businesses.

Attitudes change slowly (not that I'm excusing them). Sometimes it's actually amusing (but not too often for me!)
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Caring4Mom, your words about threatening your mother with going back to the nursing home sounded very bad. First, it isn't good to threaten them with losing their present home. Second, it makes NHs sound like bad things or punishment. We don't want our elders to see them as anything but good things. If I mentioned a NH in this circumstance I would say something along the line, "We want to keep you comfortable and healthy so you can stay home longer." It is a positive way of presenting the same idea. It says you care about her, and it says the AC will help to keep her out of the NH for a while." Our statements can sound mean or caring depending on how we word them. We know that you are being caring having the unit put in. She needs to know the same thing.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Kind of like the scenes in Golden Girls where Dorothy would look at her mother and say "Shady Pines, Ma! Shady Pines!"

Don't feel like you have to have an answer to every question. You can probably save yourself a ton of nitpicking if you just say you don't know the details, but it was the one that fits in her window. The end. You can't get sucked into the quicksand if you don't step in it!

Once it gets put in, she will probably gripe about this or that, but ultimately it will help dehumidify and cool the air, and breathing will be easier. If it's anything like my mom, you'll know it's working because it will be easier to gripe and complain longer and louder. ;-) You can't do that when you're short of breath.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

When the installer comes to her house next week, I will be at work and won't be able to be there. She is already questioning me about what kind of unit will be installed, where it will go, etc. It seems that whenever I threaten her with 'going back to nursing home' talk, she becomes more agitated and aggravated.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

JessieBelle - I would literally have to structure certain conversations in advance of mom coming into them. All the men in her life were willing to play ball except one doctor who blamed me for her problems, because I should have stayed home to take care of her. I asked him exactly what year did he think it was because on my calendar it did not say 1802, but 2002. I have an aunt who also blames me, so I've learned to take it with a grain of salt. I did finally get that doctor on board to tell mom she needs to live near family who can help her. It was some progress.

My husband had crib notes I gave him for the conversation where he told her she was moving into a senior apartment, and would no longer live in her home. She did not argue with him once and was very compliant. With me.....the very opposite.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

sandwich, I had to laugh when I read the thing about being on the bottom rung. It is so true when comes to many daughters and daughters born "in the day." My mother once thought we had a plumbing issue. I told her there was no problem, but we had to get my 14-year old nephew over here to look. He told her no problem and she believed him. So a 14-yo learning-challenged boy knew better than her 60-yo professor daughter. Some women can't get past that block when it comes to women being dumb. (I also think there may be a competition thing going on.)
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I should have added that POA doesn't fix stubborn or cognitive decline.
Way too many people I talk to think it's a magic wand, and it's not.

POA lets you act as your mother's agent up to a point. It does not let you override her.

Guardian/Conservatorship does, but this is expensive, hard to get (as it should be), and comes with court reporting requirements. I am going to court 6/3 to gain guardian/conservatorship for my mother.

How to get POA? Well, it depends on if your mother can understand how it's good for her or not. She might have to hear this from a lawyer or somebody at the bank. My mom could only hear new information about legal things from one person at the bank she trusted. I could sit there and say the very same words, but since it came out of my face it was not credible and was probably going to take all her money away. Unbelievable but true.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

The problem really has nothing to do with hot or cold rooms and comfort. It's about control.

Your mom knows she is not in total control anymore (somewhere deep down inside if not consciously). She's going to become Xena, Warrior Princess over the little things to retain a feeling of control.

If she has cognitive decline going on, no amount of reason or logic will win the day. It could be 250 degrees in that house and she would still not turn on the air and to heck with the caregivers' needs.

With my mom, I had to be Machiavellian to plan WHO could tell her certain things, to accomplish certain results. I am 44, but will always be an incompetent stupid 5 year old to my mom. My husband could tell her certain things because he is a man. Her doctor could tell her other things because he is a man and a doctor (bonus points!) Her older brother could tell her some things because he's her brother and a man. She basically would do the opposite of anything any female told her regardless of their profession or credentials. In the list of women qualified to tell her anything, I am on the bottom rung.

It's hard to do, but sometimes you have to let Humpty Dumpty fall off the wall so you can get in there and make necessary changes. With extreme heat, you can call the local police to go do a welfare check on her. You can call Adult Protection and explain you are worried about her because she won't allow you to put AC in.

Things like this require some creative or innovative approaches. As a last resort, you can play the "just get it done" card.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Caring4Mom, I understand your concern. Mobile homes can be like heat boxes on a hot day. I stayed in one for a while when I was doing field work. When I would come home, the heat would rush out as soon as I opened the door. It was like an oven, concentrating the heat inside.

How big is the home? Could a unit be installed in a room so it wouldn't be blowing on her when it is on? That way it would be available on days that got very warm. It is always better to prepare for those days than hope they won't come. Heat exhaustion can be very dangerous.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I just visited a friend today who lives in a log cabin.. she has a free standing unit in her kitchen.. sort of like the space heaters we all see ( and probably live with.. or at least my mom does..lol) It seems to work pretty well in the space, maybe this would be enough for the CGs?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Related
Questions