My mother (90) has been living in AL for 5 months. Recently she has decided she wants to take her life back, move out on her own. - AgingCare.com

My mother (90) has been living in AL for 5 months. Recently she has decided she wants to take her life back, move out on her own.

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This coincides with visits from an "old friend" who was her neighbor who tells her she is perfectly fine and we (her daughters) are trying to make her think she is helpless. She entered AL after a fall with broken bones where she received wonderful care. Once or twice a week I have to reorganize her pills because she "can't figure them out, has been working on them for hours" according to Mom. When I drive her places she always doesn't know where she is in her home town. A few days ago she said she was so depressed she wanted to kill herself (because she was in AL and hated it), now she has demanded to drive her car again, to live on her own and handle her own life, remove my sister from her POA, change her will (like that's a threat). She is also convinced that she has a divine purpose on earth, that is why God keeps her here - she is searching for what she needs to do. As a result, she says everyone thinks she's just wonderful except me and my sister. It's true,people tell her that at her age she is amazing. A couple of people from her church have told her she can heal by her hands because she is blessed by God. Who knows, maybe she can. But this totally seems to feed into her belief that she can handle everything on her own and is "special". I am recently dealing with my own 2-year breast cancer survival, a flood that has wiped out my home 2 weeks ago (so I had to move into my mother's empty house - this also may relate to her onset anger), my stepdaughter's breast cancer (which is killing her), my sister's son who just today found a lump in his chest and is unsure what it is (he is a 20 year cancer survivor at only 23). I'm not sure I can take much more of her craziness. Her doctor is her "religious friend" whom she "loves". He will not tell her not to drive, only hint at it, plus he believes she is "blessed" and just a sweet old thing. Getting in touch with him without her is really difficult as we have a history of problems before although he has helped somewhat before. She has always sort of been this way, even before my dad died 6 years ago. But he controlled her. Now it's me. Just putting this out there if anyone has any ideas of what to do. I love my mother but I feel her dragging me down.

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Thanks everyone for your help. Let's see. I am ok. My mother's house did not flood, although about 60% of our town did (Baton Rouge). My house has been completely gutted, walls & floors removed, now waiting to dry so we can treat for mold - like everyone else here. It will be months before we can get livable. Cost for a nurse to administer medicine at AL is $500/month, so I won't be doing that. My sister and I have medical POA, but she would kick and scream before going to a new doctor -- how do you physically force someone? However -- that gave me an idea. If I could ger her doctor to recommend she go to someone new for total reval, that would work. He would test her and be the bad guy. I'm going to work on that one. My sister is very frightened now, Matty had cancer when he was 3 years old and life was saved by serious radiation so now he has issues with that, has a colonoscopy every year at his age. We will know something I hope by Friday. My sister is fed up with mother too, she has less patience than me, so I try to buffer between them while keeping a relationship.
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Does someone have medical POA? If so, I think they could get her a new doctor. She may benefit from having a total evaluation by an objective outsider.
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I like Jeanne's idea very much indeed. Lay it on with a trowel about how much she has to offer her fellow residents, and how important it is even in the best ALF that there are people like her, with plenty of vim and vigour about them, to encourage the others.

Could you not hand over the medications formally to the ALF team to supervise? That is the sort of thing that you can't be relaxed about, but with all you have to cope with surely it's a commitment you don't need. Then you might perhaps feel happier to revise your boundaries and visit only if you're feeling strong enough, rather than needing to go to see her. Also, if there aren't those important tasks to attend to, you'll be able to let your attention wander and just murmur sympathetically and not take her too literally when she moves on to wanting to leave the ALF, revoke POA and so on.

How is your sister coping?
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Oh my goodness! How difficult for you, when all you want is your mother to be safe and have a chance at happiness.

If you mother is being kept here for a purpose, how does she know it isn't at the AL? Seriously. If God has a purpose for her, wouldn't it make sense it is where she is now. As us hippies used to say, Bloom where you are planted now.

If she is not legally incompetent and especially if her doctor won't be straight-forward with her, you may be limited in what you can legally do to keep her in the AL. If you are going to try persuasion, perhaps you should put it in her own terms. She needs to find out what her purpose is, right where she is.
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So sorry that you have all this to deal with. Is it safe where you are staying? Flood damage?
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Tell your Mom there has been a flood and it will take some time to get her house ready.
Then, refocus her.
Ask her friends to tell her the same.
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