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Hello everyone,


My grandmother is approaching the age of 102 this year. I relayed before that my mother is doing all the caregiving, while my husband agreed to pay for her nursing home costs, which are $4K a month. This has been going on two years. The rest of the family has completely ghosted. No visiting, no financial help. It is what it is.


Last night my gran slumped over during dinner, and was completely unresponsive. They managed to get her in her bed, and it took a long time to get her to come to. My mom rushed over, and says that she couldn't talk for a while, but then slowly regained speech.


We talked about taking her to a hospital, but she has no health care. Not a US citizen. We've paid thousands in hospital bills in the last five years. We both feel so horribly guilty about our emotions and decisions. Do we treat her? Do we allow nature to take its course? I can't ask my husband for any more money. I feel like we're playing God, and it's all in the name of money.


Hospice has come in twice and she didn't qualify either time. She doesn't have any health issues, just dementia and sheer age-related difficulty.


I can't even tell my husband about gran's episode because I'm so afraid that I'll detect that he's relieved she might go soon, and that will make me upset, yet he's in his right to feel that way. It's been a big financial burden for him for two years, and she's not even his grandmother.


I wish an angel of mercy would take my grandmother. She's a shell of her former self, and my poor mother has been caring for her for 20 years. Her golden years are gone. I want to relieve my husband of this financial burden but feel guilty that my wish is based on finances.


We are all feeling like crap over here! Thank you for listening!


Edited to add: I looked up this type of episode, and it seems possible it was a transient ischemic attack - mini stroke. Again, really struggling if we should treat or not treat. When she was in the hospital five years ago with double pneumonia I recall she had a DNR bracelet.

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I am so happy that your grandmother was able to be admitted to hospice. That will be a tremendous relief for all of you. Thank you for the update.
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BBS2019, for some reason I can't respond to your message. She is not here illegally. She moved here at the age of 80, has never paid in to Social Security, so she's not eligible for benefits. She has a green card but that means nothing. My mom managed to get her Obama care, but that doesn't cover hospice (as far as I know) or nursing homes.
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I work in a Memory Care facility; on Sundays, a deacon from the Catholic church comes in to administer communion to the residents who'd like it. Last Sunday, he came in and we got talking about his 90 y/o mother who he prays daily would die. She has dementia & lives in Assisted Living. When he'd heard a resident here had died the night before, he said loudly GOOD FOR HER! With a big smile on his face.

People of faith know that death is not the 'end' but a new beginning for our loved ones who are SO old and suffering the ravages of that age. When it's time for them to go, it's cause for celebration rather than mourning. A hard concept for many of us to grasp, but one that's fostered by many faiths and many clergy.

Paying a staggering $4k a month for a woman of 102 years old is something that most people could not bear, never mind doing so for years. Your husband has done a remarkable thing by facilitating such an arrangement for your grandmother, and neither of you have ONE single thing to feel 'guilty' for.

She's lived a very, very, very long life and it's okay for her to pass onto the next phase of life any time now. Allow her to do so without reservation.

Wishing you the best.
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BaileyBoo Feb 15, 2020
Thank you - yes, I will try to do so. I just want my grandmother's suffering to stop, and for my 76 year old mother to have a few years before she needs to be cared for herself.
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My thought is that your grandmother should qualify for hospice care but has been passed off because she is not on Medicare. There are a number of not-for-profit hospice organizations in the Austin area. Contact every one of them and see if any will step up and provide some assistance. It may work and it may not but I believe it is worth the effort.

In the meantime, continue to love her and care for her as you have. You’ve done a remarkable job and should be very proud. Wishing peace and blessings to you and your family.
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BaileyBoo Feb 15, 2020
Hospice came in last night and agreed to take her on as a charity case. At first they said she didn't qualify because she could make whole sentences, but the nursing home staff helped persuade them otherwise. So she is now officially on hospice. I believe that means my mother can stop paying for her Obama care, which was seriously taxing her. Thank you for your kind words.
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Thanks for all your answers. Guilt is a hard emotion to let go. And when I do, I feel guilty for not feeling guilty!
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At 102, most people would be on some kind of palliative care simply due to their AGE.

She had an 'issue', which while she may have resolved to baseline--she is not going to live forever and you need to plan for sooner rather than later.

You have NOTHING to feel guilty about. In fact, you should be praised to the skies for paying/caring/loving your grandmother.
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I agree that none of you should feel guilty - you’ve enabled your mum to care for your grandma, and reach 102, that’s a grand old age. Yes it does sound like a stroke.

Whilst I advocate re quality of life I also consider what that person would want : If she was wearing a Do Not Resuscitate bracelet I think I would ensure she received palliative treatment for any pain symptoms and let nature take its course. Sometimes it’s kinder to let them go and certainly nothing to feel bad about.

I think i would focus on how it would affect your mum. Is she still fairly active socially or is caring her sole ‘role’. If active socially it would, despite both your loss, enable her to have a better quality of life to enjoy. If however, she denotes her life through the care she provides it would be much harder. On some occasions it has followed that the former carer may well decide it’s their turn to be cared for. I’m not saying that is/will be the case with your mum - just that it has happened. So in effect I would consider your mum’s welfare too.

Please, don’t feel guilty, your grandma would not want that after all you all have done, I’m sure.

My very best regards to you all during these hard choices
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BaileyBoo Feb 15, 2020
My mother has complained several times that her life from age 60 until present has been consumed with this caregiving role. I would love for her to be relieved of this responsibility. Thank you for your kind words.
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You need to revisit this with the doctor. Anyone 102 and in this condition should qualify for hospice. And pallative comfort care should be her care. Time to speak with the doctors.
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BBS2019 Feb 14, 2020
If "she has no health care. Not a US citizen," she may be here illegally. In any event, Medicare hospice coverage would not be available to her if she is not a US citizen covered under the Medicare system. Private pay hospice would be possible. It will be expensive.

The DNR bracelet should be present. Try to get another. Otherwise, if parameds are called in, they may need to try CPR which will be physically painful and possibly cause rib fractures. A DNR bracelet allows comfort care measures but no interventional lifesaving measures.
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I would say Gma had a stroke. At 102 how can u feel guilty. She has lived a long life probably because of your Moms care. Try Hospice again.
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