Mom was supporting my brother because he hasn't worked in about 10 years and they live with me. Once my mom moves to a memory care facility, what do I do with my brother? - AgingCare.com

Mom was supporting my brother because he hasn't worked in about 10 years and they live with me. Once my mom moves to a memory care facility, what do I do with my brother?

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My brother is about a year older than me. Two years ago when my mom lost her home, they both came to live with me (supposedly temporary). Then mom was diagnosed with early onset Alz. She rapidly progressed and now is in early Stage 6.

Mom is on the waiting list at a really good memory care facility. But once she is there, my brother will still need somewhere to live.

He hasn't worked in about 10 years and mom was supporting him. He does have some health problems related to morbid obesity, but Dr. will not declare him disabled. So all he has is $200/mo in food stamps and money he's getting paid for part-time caregiving of mom. Once mom goes to facility, ALL her money (plus some of mine) will need to go to her bills.

I want my home (and my life) back. There are things that I want to do with my life that I cannot do if I have to support my brother - like have a family of my own. I keep thinking - why do I have to support him just because mom was?

Right now it isn't an issue - if he wasn't there it would be even harder to work and I would never get to go out occasionally with friends. But this is only for a few more months (I hope) until there's an opening for mom. I don't see him doing anything about looking for work, trying to lose weight to help his health, etc.

I am MORE stressed by him than by taking care of mom. Any time I bring this up, all I get is a flip response. Like once I told him that he can't live in my basement for the rest of his life - his response was that he isn't going to live very long anyway.

I can't imagine putting him out on the street. But I also can't imagine him living with me forever. The very thought makes me frantic.

What would you do? I can't get a job for him or even make him do it. (Even if someone would hire him, which I doubt.)

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Your mother enabled your brother into his lifestyle and now you are doing the same. He has manipulated you and your mother with his unhealthy lifestyle. He is selfish, spoiled and lazy and will use you to continue his disgusting sedimentary and over eating lifestyle if you let him. It is about time he take care of himself. Only you can take back your life, but you have to be willing to take the tough way out or your guilt will cause you to take care of brother dearest for the rest of his life.
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Thanks Dayle - I'm currently taking care of my mom at home. She has medicaid and we have a caregiver come in while I'm at work until noon or 2 pm. Then my brother takes over. She also comes 3 Sat a month from 8-2 so I can sleep in or get up and go run errands, etc.

I have made the decision that my brother and I cannot give mom the care she needs long term. She is already in Stage 6 and it is getting harder. She is young (64) and very mobile. Among other things, this makes it harder to keep track of her.

The memory care facility that I chose is great. I'm very comfortable with my decision. My concern is with after she is in her new home. She was supporting my brother for many years and I don't want to be stuck with doing that just because she did. Although he has some medical problems, he is young and intelligent and needs to determine how to support himself.
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Hi I'm Dayle from R.I. and the only thing I can think of is see if you can get him a ward of the state where you live and maybe they can find a group home setting where he would have 24 hour superavision. I used to work with the handycapped here in R.I. just retiring in 2008. My mom began showing signs of the alzhimers and dementure but instead of putting her in a facility I've been taking care of her at home. What I've enrolled in is shared living with my mom and there is a program called care for home and you sign up see if your mom is elegable for medicaid and medicare then you find someone like a friend or a relative who would want to be a seconday caregiver to give you time to go out shopping with friends or go on a date. On Wensday afternoons when I get out of my 3 hour a day job at the high school I pick mom up at the adult day care and I leave her at my neices home, she is my secondary person so that I can go to my Diabetic class and I know that she is being taken care of, the after class I go back and pick her up and bring her home. She's happy that she spent a couple of hours with her granddaughter and her two great grand children. Check with the elderly affairs in your state and see if they have such a program where you live. It wouldn't hurt to try and it will releave any stress that you might be under ..Good Luck and I'll be praying forou that someting works out for you.
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I agree, you love him and want to help but you can't just abandon him. If he was dangerous or did things that damaged your home or self that would be different. He may just be one of those people who need to be looked after by others. but with good care and helpful cognitive therapy he can help himself to make a life for himself. but it will not be easy. I speak from personal experience here.... I wish you the best and hope you both find your way....
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Thanks to everyone for taking the time to answer my question and provide your opinions. The answers have given me some ideas and opened my eyes in some interesting ways. Although I agree he needs to get his own life outside of my home, he is not an awful person. Although the situation is frustrating and stressful, I don't believe he is as calculating as it sounds.

In some ways I think he's as stressed and more scared than I am. This gives me some perspective, thank you.
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Julie, I feel for you, lets be realistic, who can throw someone out? Really now, how can you? I think you are going to have to find him a job yourself and create a life for him as he doesnt know how to, or want to. You dont want him becoming suicidal either, you need to treat him with kid gloves as he is your brother and althou he is a burden, I am sure you love him. I think him as a caregiver is a great idea! How about him working as a cook or in a nursing home or even delivering newspapers every morning, something... tough situation, real tough one. My husband had sleep apnea and he wore something at home at night to show IF he needed a sleep study or not. Well he did, had one and tried the cpaps for years without success, He just had the apnea surgery 2 months ago and he snores no more, a complete turnaround. Maybe he can get the at home machine first to try it. Good luck helping your brother get his life together, its going to be hard but worth it if you can do it.
I think there is no other alternative, easy to say "get out" but not realistic when he is your brother , homeless and jobless. Hang in the girl!!!
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This is a hard position to be in, he is probably attached to your mother and scared to make major life changes. He is not totally disabled just a bit un abled. Encourage him to get support to get his own life, what ever he chooses that to be, some have mentioned looking into being a live in care giver for others. this may be an option AS LONG AS HE IS HEALTHY ENOUGH. tell HIM THINGS ARE CHANGING AND HE NEEDS TO CHANGE TO AND MAKE AN EFFORT TO HAVE THE LIFE HE WANTS JUST AS YOU ARE CHOOSING TO DO. sorry CAPS LOCK.

You deserve your own life, and even though you care for him, he is not your responsibility. Change is frightening but it can be done and you will both be a lot better off after wards, it just wont feel like it to begin with...Very best wishes to you both.
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I too have to worry about my brother who has autism. I am bringing my mom back home because she is being asked to move due to aggression. I think your brother is severely depressed and needs help in that direction. It is apparent that his doctor isn't doing his job by checking this depression. I know that if you are extremely overweight, you can apply for Social Security Disability. Perhaps a different doctor is the solution for you and your brother. Good luck.
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One thing you really need to check on is his legal status in your home. In some states he would be considered a tenant and you would have to actually evict him even if he pays 0 in rent. Now, he may not know this, but cover all your bases or your stress levels will zoom. I've been through this, and what I do is make a list of all possible senarios (good and bad) and try to get a workable solution to each. Also, have a third person with you when you tell your brother your final decision. Don't "take the bait" and argue beforehand. You have the power, not him. Sometimes, a minister or "sane" relative can be there for the final formal talk. Put it in writing. Check the landlord/tenant statutes in your state. It might even be worth it to consult a lawyer. Your state and local agencies may have options to help him to be declared disabled and or find some vocational rehab for him. He can consult a disability lawyer and they don't bill unless you have a case. But, check out your rights, make a plan and schedule reasonable deadlines, present it to him and tell him you won't fight about it but you will help him work the plan. If he starts to fight, walk away. He might get even more upset, but it sounds like he's not stupid, let him have alittle time to "save face" and come back to you. And this whole time, you stay calm, nice, and stick to the plan schedule (in the plan you should list what repercussions will happen if deadlines are not met). I know this is easier said that done, that's why it will help you to get knowledge, don't take his word for stuff-double check things on your own, and continue to love your brother. I know for me a long habitual routine is one of the toughest things to change. Knowledge helps alot. Best wishes to all of you. Karen
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Brace yourself for a possible health 'crisis' from your brother if he thinks you are actually going to put him out. (He may genuinely become frantic about suddenl;y having to support himself.). You might try contacting a mental health office in your city or county for advice/services, too. Lilliput's suggestion that he look for a job as an assistant for an elderly or disabled person sounds good except that you say he often crashes for a day after an insomnia binge. Obesity & sleep apnea are putting his heart at risk.
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