Follow
Share

My mother has had Alzheimer's and has been living with me for about 2 years. I have one sister and one niece that live in PA and refuse to even give me a break to go on vacation. They say if I even think that my mom is going to come there they will put her in a home. Mom is now were near needing a home. I love my mother very much and have no issues with having her live with me however it has doubled my expenses, would it be rude for me tell my sister that I need mom to pay the utilities every other month? everything has doubled as far as electric, gas, etc. I have been doing this for 2 years now, I pay for everything grocery's, utilities, and never ask for anything but I'm so tired of my sister acting like Mom's money is hers. If they were taking care of mom half the time I would not even ask but they want to sit back and have me do it all and its getting very hard financially. Mom has plenty of money and of course the caregivers salary is paid by her trust account but I get quizzed on her credit card bill all that is on there is her hair appt. and cigarettes but every month my sister will send me the bill and have me account for everything. I know I will take care of mom for the rest of her life and I'm happy that it will be that way, My sister just does not care and I think this is best but it is causing a financial issue to the point that I can't really do anything except sit at home. My sister even went as far as telling me that I needed to pay for part of my mom's caregiver because she would be helping clean the house.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Here is a reality check for your sister: your mom should be paying rent, which may or may not include utilities, your call. You should be getting respite so that you can go on vacation. Who has POA? You need to get mom to an eldercare attorney and draw up a rental agreement and caregiving contract that is Medicaid compliant .
Helpful Answer (8)
Report

Aveeno, one thing we all need to realize is that not everyone is cut out to be a caregiver.... some of us are good at being hands-on... some of us are good at logistics/financials.

Have you put together a contract saying how much utilities cost, groceries, gasoline, misc items that your Mom uses? Sometimes people need to see this in print to realize there is a cost involved with caring for a love one under one's roof. Compare the cost of Mom living with you compared to her living in a senior apartment at independent living.

Not all elders will volunteer to pay for room and board... it all depends on who took care of the finances when Mom and Dad were married. Some never learned to write a check thus have no knowledge how much it cost to run a household and aren't familiar that one has to pay for water and electricity.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

I can't even TYPE what I want to say. Your sister is unFREAKIN'believable.

Here's what I would do' in letter or email: "Dear Elaine: wanted to give you plenty of notice. Effective July 1st, I will need mom to pay for half of the utilities every month. They run about X for electric, phone, water, garbage, telephone, etc. Her share will run about $X monthly. Over the past two years mom has lived with me, our food has run an average of $X I expect mom to pay her share -- which will run about $X a month. I'll send you copies of all receipts. I expect 100% of mom's caregiving to be paid by the trust with no contribution from me at all for these costs. I am sooo tired. I love mom to bits and pieces, but your failure to show adequate appreciation is beyond the pale. Sooooo, If this isn't acceptable, then please begin making other permanent arrangements for mom. I think she'd be far better off with a higher level of care, frankly. A nursing home will help her be all she can be. I know you'll find a good one. Let's discuss this in writing, should you so desire. I think it'll be easier to do it that way. I've copied this letter to our local Council on Aging. In case you need any assistance and want to know where to start,call them. They've always been helpful. Love, Your worn out sister, sue."

I WOULD talk to your local Council on Aging and would get a name to forward your letter to.

This is what I call the Nuclear option. Your sister is a miserable stingey control freak. When she should be sending you a gift certificate from mom for a mani-pedi, a bouquet of roses on your birthday from mom and a separate generous gift from HER, and really so much more, she is hoarding mom's money. And making sure you account for every dime. WOW!

If you do nothing, you are allowing her emotional blackmail to continue. And make no mistake. That's exactly what it is.

Something else . . . You might go see an elder law attorney and ask him what to do or tell him about this letter suggestion and see what he has to say.
Helpful Answer (8)
Report

Why does your sister even have a say about this? Why is she seeing the credit card bill? Your mother lives with YOU! If your sister has POA, the first thing I would do is get Mom to change her POA so you are the only one, and drop Sis completely out of the loop. She's not contributing either money or effort- she shouldn't have a say in how Mom's money is spent or how the caregivers are paid.

If your Mom has plenty of money, use some of it for respite care while you take a much-deserved vacation. Your sister doesn't need to know about any of it.
Helpful Answer (9)
Report

Thank you all so much for your response. It is so hard to watch your mother deteriorate plus deal with my sister, her daughter is just as bad she only knows what her mom tells her so she told me off the other day for no reason. I'm so disapointed in them As family i just don't even know what to say
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

The reason my sister has a say, when we found out that mom had alzheimer's we were advised to put everything in trust at the time we went on paper as 50/50 trustees. All this has occured since that and all my sister will do is pay the bills and bark orders. Everyone knows that i take care of mom but my sister turns on the tears when she is around everyone trying to make them feel bad for her its unreal. She will say stuff like I have noone to help me if mom was here so I can't do this WTH i have hired several people and mom accept them all. We went on a family vacation with my inlaws on memorial day weekend mom had a bad accident she used the bathroom on the floor one night they were so kind and helpful as to my sister would have been nasty for years about it. I realized at that point that my sister was just awful. Thank god for my new family they are a blessing
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Barb, mom should be paying her share. Take the total of rent plus utilities and groceries and divide it by the number of people in the house. Send that to sis with a note of what money is due to you. That's only fair.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

ALL elders should have the dignity of paying their own way, to the extent that is possible.

Consult and Elder Law attorney. I think Mom should make you POA and give you authority to spend her money on her behalf. Proving everything to your sister is horse puckies. But see a lawyer and get this set up legally and appropriately should Mom ever need to apply for Medicaid. (Let's hope she doesn't, but it is better to be prepared.)

I think I'd let the lawyer explain the new facts of life in a letter to your sister.

Two years is about 23 months too long for this to be going on. Do it quickly.
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

I have felt so guilty for even asking this to you guys, thank you so very much what a great support group
Helpful Answer (7)
Report

Well that did not work well, I told my sister last night that I was going to take the bills and divide them into 4 since we have 4 people in the house, she went ballistic on me, the conversation ended by her calling me a self rachises B----
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Get to that elder care attorney ASAP.....Document everything and find copies of your utilities and cancelled grocery checks from 3 years ago. This is SOO typical of the criticism of absent children as they swoop down to find fault with the caregiver who is doing all the heavy lifting.

It is a small price to pay of your own $ to get this elder attorney to draft a letter like Maggie mentioned. I asked for relief from a sibling for 2 years of "Christmas vacations"....even had reservations at a resort in Santa Fe....but always had to cancel, because it never worked out!!!! Take care of your own family's future.

We all forget that we need to save $$ for our own retirement, too!
Helpful Answer (7)
Report

These situations create very high emotions. Stick with what you know is right. I know its hard because family always knows just the right(?) thing to say to trigger a response. That unfortunately probably wont change; the way you react can though. Good luck.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Aveeno - I'm sorry your sister reacted badly to your news but that doesn't mean it didn't work, not unless your sister is the one controlling Mom's money. If that's the case, that has to change, and Mom is the one who has to change it. It's typical of the uninvolved siblings to try to lay blame this way - it has nothing to do with reality buy only reinforces what you know about her priorities. Stay strong and don't be cowed by her anger. Of course she's hoping that if she shows her disapproval loudly and scathingly, you will back down and kowtow to her. Don't do it!
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Well, good for you!!! Who cares what she calls you, anyway? You're going to need to toughen up and stop being the doormat if you're going to stop the disrespect from draining you physically and emotionally. This sounds like a good place to start. Next time she starts yelling just walk away. You're not there to take her abuse.
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

if she does get to the point she needs more care than you can provide, is that money available, since it's being used to pay the caregiver now?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Aveeno, don't let this drop. If she doesn't pay those bills, go to your locAl dept on aging and get them involved. Your sister exemplifies why I'm sometimes grateful I'm an only child. Stay strong.

Send those bills a sap.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I understand.My sisters son,took me to COURT!!!! Demanding that there was a 'drawer full of 'precious metals and cash' that was supposed to be dispersed between the 3 sibs. Well,of the 3 sibs,Im the only one who has been there,paid for my dads funeral,moms apartment ,etc.Get a GOOD lawyer.And tell your family to kiss your a**.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

She's hiding something! Get to an Attorney!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

with mom being diagnosed with Alzheimer's I was under the impression that I could not change anything due to her mental state. Yes, emotions do come across very heightened. I begged her to come down to let me have a break more huge fights over that issue, she told me off and finally she found a week of vacation. How do you find a week of vacation. She also keeps telling me that Mom can come anytime as long as her caregiver comes with her. funny that time is far and few between. There is always a reason why she can't do anything. I'm sorry I feel so bad going on and on but I don't have anyone that I can talk to about this. I think the worst part of it all is that she is so uncaring when it comes to Mom and I know I can't change the way she feels but I sometimes feel she is really not going to force me to do this 24/7 but if I don't do it then she will put mom right in a home. How is that not going to tare to people apart. Any relationship that we had is bound to fall apart through something like this.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Okay I'm joining the "elder care attorney" advice camp. You need to know what your options are given your mother's current state of mental competency. Good luck!!!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sister is not just uncaring about Mom, she's uncaring about you. It's inhumane. It's wrong. She may just have blinders on, and the anger serves to camouflage her guilt and denial, but the legal or estate planning advice is essential. You ought to have a caregiver contract and someone with a little authority and credibility should be pointing out to Sis that's she has got it all wrong about who "should" be doing what and what should be funded by whom. Your making an extra effort to give a complete accounting is also commendable and ought to get you some respect. Don't return hate for hatefulness, but if you are giving us the straight scoop and not leaving anything out, you are clearly being treated unfairly and need not feel guilty about trying to protect yourself, at the very least with a sound caregiver contract.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

desert, my family didn't go quite that far but after my mom died my 80 yr. old uncle came down and insisted on pulling dad's car out of the garage to get to the pull-down stairs to the attic, going up them to see if his toys from his boyhood were up there - that he'd been told that when their childhood home was torn down that they'd still been there and mom had brought them to her house and put them in the attic - that she couldn't even climb the stairs to - nope, sorry - I mean, I let him look but, nope, they weren't there - I'd never heard anything about them being there - but the real thing is mom did leave a will leaving a brooch to one of her brother's daughter's and a ring to one of her other brother's daughters but not saying where they were - dad and I had gone into her - or their, don't think she had her own separate one, no, guess not, haven't ever heard anything about it from a bank - safe deposit box, nope, not there - I went through every piece of jewelry - rings/pins I could find, brought them out to show them - nope, none of them was it - had no idea what she was talking about - they finally described them to me - never saw anything like them - didn't quite let them just go through her room and stuff - didn't really want to chance them taking anything else in place of it - though don't think they really would have - they finally told me they'd been my grandmother's that my grandfather had given her, might have even been her engagement ring with pin to match, why so special, but didn't make me find them any better - finally my one uncle told me he'd asked mom about them before she passed away and said she started crying; he thinks he's pretty sure what happened to them, that they got gone and she'd just hated to let anybody know, even though yes, they had done a lot for her over the years so probably did, in a sense, deserve to, is a shame what happened, but really got to me, though, the way they did me about it afterwards, especially after finding out what he'd already found out and felt like he pretty much knew - why didn't he just tell me that to begin with and save us all of that - and believe that if I'd found them I - maybe - would have let them know - considering I did my part, not sure can really say for sure but then was in her will
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I've only just seen this thread. Aveeno, is your sister having a laugh? No one lives on nothing. What makes her think your mother can?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I'm confused - are Aveeno and Barbgschantz are you one in the same or are you two different posters with the same issue?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Truth is, if your sis does put your mom in a home she runs the risk of having to deal with arranging things by herself. I personally think she's bluffing and has no idea how to take responsibility for your mom's health and welfare. However, you both need to see the Elder Attorney together and stop all this school girls acting out with each other behavior.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

When it gets this troublesome... Contact a lawyer. It doesn't hurt to find out your rights in this situation. I understand with some lawyers the first visit is free. Then it will be clear on how you need to proceed. Good luck
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

do you have your mother with you or are you with her? and not sure if she's bluffing but she's not the only one to bluff like that, if she is, with the solution being to just place them if it's getting too hard; granted, they may not realize what that entails or that they can't typically just do that, that, if nothing else, there are often waiting periods - though might not hurt to try to find out if she does already have her on a waiting list
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Teaka123 good question.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Aveeno, hold your ground - your sister is trying to bully you and the more you take the more she will dish out. Having your Mother pay for her share of the expenses is only fair. If you are able talk to your Mother and have her agree and understand might make things easier. Caring for your Mother is not going to get cheaper or easier - so do this now. You are very fortunate that a caregiver is helping take care of your Mom - but unless Mom is paying for 24 hour care, you are still providing a large amount of care. If your Mom were to be put into a home as your sister would do - she would be paying at least 5,000.00 a month - so if your sister is willing to pay that rather than care for her - why is she not willing to have Mom pay for the care and board she is receiving from you. Perhaps you could get a social worker either from Dept of Aging or from your Mom's health insurance carrier to come in and meet with you, Mom and sister to work out a reasonable agreement. Good luck
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Aveeno, maybe this is coldhearted, but I think your sister is bluffing. I would call her on the threat of putting your mom in a home and tell her to do it.I think she is spending the money on herself. Does she ever give you an accounting of the funds? You have done this long enough and it is taking its toll. You need to get your life back. Your mom could be placed in your location and then you could still tend to her needs, but all the other resources would be in place. If your mom qualifies for assisted living, I would look there first.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

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

Ask a Question

Subscribe to
Our Newsletter