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I think tough love is best with my elderly mother. After a health crisis, I firmly told my mother to come home with me. My narcissistic brother gave in to her desires to go to her home. His "plan" involved me and his girlfriend dividing our time in her home. He didn't even bother to consult me. I tried at first, but backed away because he was too domineering, controlling and judgmental. Now, his girlfriend is backing away also. He is taking time off from work to care for mom himself rather than admitting that he was wrong. This has been ongoing for 6 weeks. He and mom are in this co-dependent dance. He gets narcissistic supply and she gets to stay in her home even though she can't care for herself. He is currently on FMLA leave without pay. I fear that his next step will be to take control of her money....out of necessity. He is acting as gatekeeper. He recently changed her locks so I no longer have a key to her home. When I call, he often answers and won't let me talk to her. Do I have any legal remedies?

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I suggest paying much more attention to what MOM wants. Quit putting any energy into hating what brother is, or did, do. Make sure your MOM has her paperwork the way she wants, including her Health Care Directive (also her Health-POA). don't get bogged down in minute details of what brother may have done or his reasons or motivations for doing it......focus on MOM. What does she want? She may truly want to live at her home, or brother's home. She may want to spend more money on brother--it is her money after all. She may want to give him some or all of her possessions-- as long as she is not incompetent, she can do that. If you go to court and ask for Guardianship and all you have to say, is, "my brother is a narcissistic S#&" that won't endear you to the Judge, who will be more impressed if you can document how you prove you know your mom better, and hundreds of things you have done for her over the past 40 years, showing yourself as more reliable and someone your Mom would feel more comfortable being around, in her most vulnerable final years.
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Family disagreements are the worst. If your mom is mentally incapable of making decisions, then the only way is through guardianship. You can contact an attorney regarding the legal issues. Maybe mom's illness has your brother scared of losing her and he's doing what he thinks is best. What is more important is what does mom want? I know she wants to stay in her home. There are in home programs that can provide in home services. Contact your local Area Agency on Aging for more info on these programs. Have you sat down with your brother just to talk, to make a plan for mom? Mom has the right to live at home. You can always contact your local adult protective service, however that may make him more resistant. He should have spoke to you and his girlfriend before making plans for mom's care. It's a family decision, not just the decision of one.
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I have been reading all the posts and it feels like dejavu, except the situation is reversed. I was the caretaker and the sibling was the sociopath. I never took a cent of my parent's money or possessions. I am a medical professional and carefully monitored Dad's health issues while caring for him yet heard criticisms that I was doing everything wrong...My conversations and Dad's were recorded. His caretaker's possessions were rifled through. So many hurtful statements to me, my Dad and other family members. Slanderous statements made to extended family members and friends of mine.....Actual harrassment of Dad's 24 hour live-ins during his final years.....If people actually believed the false statements about me , they would think I was a criminal. I actually had to go to court and sue the person for harassment. I am continuing to go through this nightmare because I am the executrix of Dad's will. He was 96 when he died. The estate is split evenly between family members and I am not even taking the stipend I am entitled to as exceutrix because I want everything to be fair. I continue to get criticism from the sibling because of the perceived hurts when she was a child. It never ends.......I really feel for all the abused caregvers who devote themselves tirelessly without any appreciation or help from other family members.....
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Thanks for your response zookeeper...I know the minute I get a lawyer involved it will cause a huge wall to go up against me and you're right - WWIII will break out. I think most of my sister's actions have been to secure the money for herself. She has a fairly good relationship with our mother and appears to take good enough care of her needs. So I don't really question the "care" my mom is getting, other than the fact that my sister is a sociopath that does drugs. What could go wrong?? Sigh. So if I were to involve a lawyer it would only be for securing the financial end of it. My sister has already gotten our mom to give her about $200k - a downpayment on a house, a new kitchen, and I believe she secretly signed over an insurance settlement to her that was about $145. So using her undue influence she has already worked things in her favor quite successfully. I don't need the money that would be my share of the inheritance, but my brothers do. They aren't smart enough to see what is going on right before their eyes. So really my only sensible option is to just let things develop on the course they are on and if my brothers ever come to their senses maybe we can jointly do something. But I think it's already too late. My mom is secretive about her intentions and my sister is the only one that has been included in meetings with my mom's estate attorney. My brothers blindly trust my sister as well. She is a very convincing liar and actress. I HATE her now...it took literally decades to figure out what I was dealing with having her as my sister. But now after extensive reading I know what she is. All the lying, backstabbing, and smearing of my good name - it all makes sense now. That's what sociopaths do.
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I agree with BlueJean Baby. You did the correct thing by backing off. If your brother is that domineering, controlling and judgmental, things could be worse if you had your mom in your own home. No doubt your mother feels happier in her own home. Harsh reality and the days of "no choice" will come soon enough for her, so be sure to tell your brother that things worked out for the best. Your mother's money is her's to use for her care as she see fit. Your brother (and mother) may or may not come to regret his "takeover", but in any event, be grateful for your bit of freedom. In the meantime and in a nonthreatening way, work to have yourself listed as a "medical advocate" for your mother. This allows you full communication with all her doctors, and can be done easily at the time of a doctor's visit. Develop a good relationship with your mom's doctor and a nurse in the practice. Call with any concerns you have about her health/mental status. Make sure the office is very aware of her living arrangement. Perhaps also use this time to get informed about true symptoms of elder abuse so you don't misread situations that are merely personal differences in care techniques. For your mother's sake, stay amicably connected to your brother. If you do see signs of true abuse, call the proper authorities.
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Dear Deniece,

I am hoping that you read my post because some states carry laws protecting the elderly under such circumstances as what had happened to your Father. Speak to an Elder Attorney as it can be illegal to make alterations to an elderly persons assets within five years of their death, even if a person has a legal Power of Attorney or regardless if the elderly person has alzhiemers/dementia. A P.O.A. gives an individual the right to sign anothers checks, but in doing so legally you sign their name, then yours followed by POA. All checks written against the bank account can be interpretted by the family or an attorney if there are any questions regarding an elders bank account and how that money was spent.

In the state where I live, if anyone tries to move assets of any sort, into their name, for whatever reason within five years prior to the elderly person passing away and gets caught doing so they are automatically thrown into jail along with whatever fines the judge deems fit for the crime. Making the family members entitled to recovery of those assets, be it a home, property, cash, automobiles, etc.
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2nd Best: It is a train wreck happening in slow motion. We have a very similar situation in our family. You can check some of my posts to see what I've had to do, and am still doing to try to make sure mom is getting care for properly. My advice to you is this: forget reporting to local agencies, or mom's lawyers or doctors. Forget about the inheritance - if she's taking care of mom (even if she's not doing it well or the way you like it), isn't she entitled to compensation for that? (Yes, another issue, there are lots of posts on this one, too, but you need to stop and think about that...) More importantly, you need to find out if your mom is getting care for, and that your sister isn't going something dastardly, either with mom's care or her money. The only way you are going to really get what you want, without running into brick walls everywhere, is if you bite the bullet and put the money to hire a lawyer to help you. Nothing else will work -- I know, and you'll beat your head bloody against the wall trying. A lawyer might not be able to succeed in making you feel completely comfortable about your mom's situation, but can at least get access to the info you need a lot faster. Be prepared for WWIII with your sister, and be prepared to leave that relationship in the garbage heap, where it probably belongs.
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I am in a similarly sad situation. My sister seized total control of our mother after our father died. It was then we learned she was named successor trustee and executor for both of them. She since had the trust revoked and talked my mom into buying annuities that mature in 10 yrs. She was almost 80 at the time. I have just backed off and let her take over - letting her "win". I do worry though because she smokes a lot of weed and takes whatever pills (who knows what?), and she is the one that dispenses my mom's daily doses of 17 different medications. I also worry that she is "gaslighting" my mom to try to make her question her sanity and competence. One example is some jewelry that was missing that my mom and I searched for in her drawer where she keeps her valuables. A month later my mom said she found the jewelry in that very drawer. I personally had helped her search for it for 20 mins, so I know it wasn't there when we looked. And my sister claimed to not have it. Also I worry that my sister has gotten our mom to make her POD on bank accounts, sole beneficiary to the annuities, etc. Pretty much hijacking any future inheritance from my two brothers and me. She has also worked to make my mom distrustful of me by accusing me of things after I visit (I live out of state and stayed at my mom's place for a few nights on my last visit there). I believe my sister is a sociopath and have cut all ties with her after my father passed away. I don't really know what to do to combat this situation since my mom blindly trusts and relies on her. I want what's best for my mom and my sister appears to be her favorite, so I have just let her take over. Since I live far away I can't really be involved in the day-to-day care and interaction with my mom. I feel like it's all pretty much out of my hands. My brothers are both clueless and don't see through my sister's charade. Perfect setup for my sociopathic sister having nothing standing in her way of grabbing my parents' $1M estate for herself. It's like a train wreck happening in slow motion that I feel helpless to prevent. Any suggestions?
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Taking care of parents is stressful. It doesn't help if a sibling questions everything you do and accuse you of everything from alienation of their affection to stealing their money. Having personally gone through this with the care of my Father, I empathize....I practically gave up my own life for six years taking care of Dad....I received no help aside from rare visits and "vacations" at Dad's house during the Summer, (Dad lived in a beach area), during which my Dad's care and routines were disturbed by the "vacationers" and their visitors. After all, the sibiling and her family could not be disturbed because they were on "vacation".....Dad would get so upset with all the turmoil that he wanted me to change the locks on the house so he could live in peace....I did not change them...It got so bad that the caretakers would leave because of the verbal abuse and the "vacationers" treating them like dirt. It was a nightmare dealing with them. I question when siblings criticize when the burden of care of a parent falls on one without help from others....
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I would involve both an Elder Law Attorney and the local Ombudsman to get some advice and support. This situation can quickly spiral out of control and, in the case of DeNeice's comment above, many bad/unfortunate things can happen in a controlling situation like this one. Log everything so looking back you can clearly show the trail when/if you have to go to trial. Stay ahead of it the best you can, plan well and get lots of support and professional advice on your side.
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If bro thinks he can live on Mom's money and put her in a NH he has another think coming. Medicare will get him.
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Oh, boy he is in denial bigtime. Mom will take his side because she wants to stay in her home. My advice is back off until the GF bails out and the Mom pushes him beyond his limits. That will be soon, because nobody can do this alone.
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I totally understand your feelings and I get your frustration. My siblings and I have been attempting to work together to help my parents but my sister keeps trying to run the show. Her need to control borders on pathological. Fighting her is futile and unproductive to our goals which are to make sure our parents are safe and cared for.

I agree that sometimes you just have to stand back and get out of the way of a control freak and let them have at it... They will either come around and start to play nice (my hope) or they will martyr up and run themselves ragged trying to do everything. The choice is theirs. Either way the elder will be taken care of.

Meanwhile we can let the elder know we love them and will be there if they need us.
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bloujean: I wish you could get my sister to understand the gist of your message. It makes such perfect, logical sense. In our case, the impossible complication is that I live with mom part time and have until recently been expected to provide all the care, and sis is POA and is withholding access to medical care, medical information, food, etc. There are some siblings that you just cannot trust to do the right thing.
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Toughlove.... please tell about your Mom's health issues, then it would help us know what is going on. If she has Alzheimer's/dementia, then that is a whole different situation.

In any event, your brother has the max of 12 weeks for his FMLA [Family & Medical Leave Act]. I hope he has Plan B since his two original Caregivers [you and his girlfriend] are no longer there.
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Your question was, What do you do?" My answer would be "Let him". If he lives with your mom now he has a right to some privacy. Being a care-giver is no picnic. Knowing what I know now, I would love it if someone who could "Handle my Dad" better than I, would do it. It's better for the person who lives with your Mom to handle the medical & money matters which is also an enormous undertaking, considering he is caring for everything else. I don't think it's to exclude you that he wants control. But, that it would make things easier for them both under the circumstances. You have to ask yourself some things. What is it that I want for Mom? What's the best way to care for her? If my bro leaves, then who will take over her care in her home. You are smart to know that it's not going to be you who moves in w/ Mom & to stand by a decision you can live with. Your Mom wants to stay where she is & your brother is the only person willing to do that, right? Ask yourself how much control you really want in all this. Then, ask yourself how controlling her money or deciding where she lives would matter. Do you really see that working? Sometimes we have an answer to our prayers right in front of us & working to make all happy & we let our fear of what could go wrong mess up a good thing. So, if bro moves out, & you are in charge of things---I can already tell you , you WILL practically be living at her house & spending way more time taking her places, doing this & that HER way. Just picture it. I don't think that is what you want. Maybe a little praise & support thrown your bro's way will Help everyone to relax. If you are afraid of someone taking advantage of Mom, Who do you suggest do it? You HAVE someone already very good & you trust him more than a stranger because he's family. He's not perfect & he will make mistakes. Sometimes it takes someone outside a situation looking in to remind us that we really love our family & if we keep saying we love them we will remember to treat them better than strangers & work on showing support & love for each other when we need each other the most instead of how we are going to get them back when they really probably think they are doing something nice. Communicate your fears. But, be ready for a workable solution or two that you have up your sleeve or it will be taken as criticism and caregivers simply hate that, you know.
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Ditto, here. Sis is our "culprit". Get to your own attorney and secure POA or guardianship ASAP, before the bro does. He probably already did and you just don't know about it. My sis actually had my mom's changed (removing me as shared POA) and no one knew about it until long after mom wasn't able to change it back. We are in the throes of a nasty battle over getting mom the care she needs. Things only get worse when dealing with those personalities, and they are so good at making everyone else look like they deserve all the blame, while they retain all the credit. And the money will be gone before you know it, if you don't intervene immediately.
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I have a narcissistic sister who managed to "take over", too. She somehow got my Daddy to sign all his property and bank accounts over to her 4 years before he died. It has be a terrible experience for me; one that I would NOT wish on anyone. I contacted "Elder Abuse" in my home town. They warned her before they came to inspect so she had time to move him into his rental home with around the clock care givers. She plotted, schemed with my cousin and managed to take EVERYTHING my parents had. When my Daddy died she was left "in control". I had no recourse. There was literally 2 of everything; 2 houses, 2 cars; 2 bank accounts; 2 coin collections; etc. Of course, she was executor and she took everything! I had no way to "fight" her because everything was done before he died! So watch your brother carefully and I would suggest checking with an Estate Attorney. I tried but Daddy had added my sister's name on to all his property as "co-owner" and put her "pay-upon-death" on all the bank accounts, needless to say, I still have nothing! She recently landed in jail and attempted to "double-cross" me by having our cousin (her partner in crime) mail her a Power of Attorney at the same time I was paying an attorney to draw up the paperwork. Check with the "Elder laws in your state" and seek legal advice. Please do not let "what happened to me also happen to you." I wish you the best. Take Care. DeNeice
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Guardianship is your only legal recourse in this situation. And you might want to do it quick before your brother beats you to the punch.
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