Overnight I became a caregiver to my 82 years old mother-in-law. Any advice?

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feeling exhausted and tired. Mum needs full assistance as her mobility is very low, Mum needs assistance to washroom, eating, bathing, in everything, 24 hours. I am a full time working person, do i quit my job to look after mum or do i send her back to India and hire nurses for her, as i can afford it in India.

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Joanna, do not quit your job. Here's the reason why.... Here are some things to think about if one is trying to decide whether to quit work to care for an aging parent.... on average if a working person quits work he/she will lose over the years between $285,000 and $325,000 which includes not only loss of salary over those years...

it also includes the net worth loss of the health insurance coverage.... loss of money being put into Social Security/Medicare..... loss of other benefits such as matching 401(k).... profit sharing.... workman's comp insurance.... company sponsored life insurance.... vacation pay, sick pay.... tuition assistance, etc. [source: in part Reuters 5/30/12]

Curious if in your family it is the daughter-in-law who drops everything to tend to the husband's mother? My good friend, who was born and raised in India, now a U.S. citizen, says in her husband's family it is still that way, even though she herself has a high stress high paying job where she does a lot of traveling. She refuses to quit her job. Thus that brings a battle. If her MIL remained in India, MIL could easy hire a cook, another person as a cleaner, and another as a caregiver.
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This is your mother-in-law. Why are YOU providing all of her care? Where is your husband in all of this?
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Are those your only options? It sounds like she needs more care than one person (who works fulltime) can provide in a private home.

If you quit your job and didn't work for 5 to 10 years, what would that do to your lifestyle? To your ability to provide for your own old age? How feasible would this really be?

And even if you quit your job, you still need your sleep, some private time, and some time to spend with your husband. How can one person provide the care that 3 shifts of trained people can provide?

I take it that you cannot afford to hire nurses (or other help) where you are now. (US? UK?) Can you afford some limited help, like someone to bathe your MIL? Someone to clean your house? But it sounds like MIL needs someone with her all day. That increases the expense.

Does MIL have relatives back in India? Would they be involved in overseeing her care and in visiting her?

What does Mum think about going back to India? Is she homesick for India? Would she love to go back? Or would this seem like a terrible punishment to her?

You face very difficult decisions!
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