Has anyone had to place their husband in a care facility when the husband was only in their 60's? - AgingCare.com

Has anyone had to place their husband in a care facility when the husband was only in their 60's?

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He has a Traumatic Brain Injury. I work full time, go home and spend the rest of the day caring for my husband. He refused to go to the doctor, had a very severe heart attack and went without oxygen. He now has a Traumatic Brain Injury and Parkinson's now. He has a caregiver with him while I teach school. I have done this for five+ years now. I am only 57 and need to continue to work for my financial security. I am finding that both my mental and physical health are starting to fail. The GUILT is overwhelming when I think of placing him in a care facility.

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Age doesn't matter. Your husband needs round-the-clock care that he can only get in a skilled nursing facility. You will then be able to give him the loving attention he deserves without overburdening yourself. My husband had Parkinson's and was in such a facility for two years. I will always cherish that time together. You will be of no help to your husband if you get run down and sick, and you could lose your job.
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Sadly, for his own safety you have no option.
Make your visits often and enjoy your respite without reservations or guilt.
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I am going through a similar situation except that my husband, 61, has frontal temporal dementia. I have a caregiver for the hrs that I work then I care for him the rest of the time. I am 62. Talk to a eldercare attorney, financial planner, get all the facts before you make a decision. I talked with all these people and have decided to keep him at home as long as possible or until the end. I will see what hospice can do to help me closer to the end. I am a RN so caregiving is a bit easier. My husband is total care for me but still able to walk. I will get a 24 hr caregiver when I need to, that will be cheaper than a nursing home. Igloo572 has some good info but who can live on $119K, keep the car and house at our young age???? I still need to work. I too have guilt putting him in a facility. I am afraid I will be left with no money for me to live on if I put him in a facility. The nursing home will use up all his 401K, etc, then go into my 401K, etc to pay the bills because we are married. It was suggested to me by the attorney to get a divorce, that would save 50% of the funds we have together. I do not want to get a divorce.. Who can live on SS and a little money in this day and age. How far would that $119K go at our age?. The rules for medicare and what the living spouse can keep is made for older people not us younger spouses. Things need to change in the government who makes these financial rules. More and more this is happening , where younger spouses can be impoverished. 1949caregiver I feel for you, I know what you are going through. God be with you.
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I think it is okay to admit that he needs more care than you can provide. This is not a reflection on you, but the reality of the situation. I visited about 9 AL/Memory Care facilities before finding one that would work for two friends for whom I was given POA authority. They had to go as a couple. I delayed as long as I could, but when the wife became incontinent and started to wander, she needed 24 hour care. I was very happy with the facility I found for them and was able to make their bedroom and TV room just like their condo, so the transition was easy. The care was excellent, as was their advice for me on how to handle things since this was all new to me. They had wanted to live independently like always, but that was no longer a possibility. Rather than feel guilty, I felt thankful that I found a solution that would work for them and me. You deserve the same. Why blame yourself for what happened to him? My friend's wife and I were both teachers, too, and loved it. You deserve an environment that gives you time for yourself to grade papers, prepare, recover, knowing your husband is well cared for.
Best of luck on this journey you are on.
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I did. My mm. Im an only child and my husband and I moved next door to try to care for her. But we were in our late 40's & 50's and both of us disaled with out backs & legs & it was just to much. Mom had a brain tumor removed and she wasnt normal when she came out. The social worker said we can take her home or place her. I had to place her even thought I didnt like it 1 bit I had to do what was BEST for her as well as myself. My mom didnt really fuss too long & she kinda understood and I know my mom in her right mind would want what was best for me as well. I would say do it because you matter as well & a good loving husband when with a right mind would want what is best for his wife as well. Place him but dont just leave him there if you can take him on outtings etc when you can and as often as you can. I took my mom to the County fair. I was so glad I did. She passed 2 months later and she had a ball there.
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I know I commented already--but I do know how the stress of caring for a sick hubby can take a huge toll on you. My hubby had HCV, liver cancer, a liver transplant and 84 weeks of a brutal chemo-like treatment to "kill" the HCV. It didn't, and so he relapsed. (Luckily in 2015 he did the Harvoni TX and he is cured-- after 40+ years with this disease!)
My story is that I had to work 2 jobs, plus take care of a very sick hubby for a very long time. Also had 2 kids and a foster kid at home. When hubby finally was able to go back to work--I collapsed, Literally and figuratively. I'm never going to be the same, and this was 10 years ago. I did NOT even try to preserve me sanity, I was too worried about losing the house to even think.
He gets that sick again....I know I could place him in a NH (a very nice one!) and try to retain some sanity. He was not himself during all that time--and the 'real' hubby? I don't know where he went. His brain chemistry was altered forever by all the drugs, anesthesias. etc. I "get" that living with a person who is not the same anymore is hard, if not impossible. I wish you good luck and finding peace in your decision.
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I'm so sorry you've found yourself in such a position with you husband, you have my empathy in spades. I think one of the worst promises we can ever make is that we'll "never" place a loved one in a nursing home. There are simply too many scenarios and variables in what life can throw at us. Our family certainly saw this with my mother. During her four years in a nursing home we saw other residents in a wide range of ages, some in situations much like you describe your husband. They weren't the majority but they were there, often getting more visits and attention, I think possibly due to an extra sympathy factor at the hand life had dealt. I'd encourage you to look into it. I know the guilt all too well, but there's a very true reality of preserving your own health and sanity so you're available to see that his care is good. Best wishes and please keep us posted
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My heart goes out to you. I have never had to do this with a loved one, but I do know of several people who were placed in Long Term care in their 60's. I know it happens, and you just don't expect this in one so young. (I just turned 60 and that seems to be the "age of doom" for some reason!)
Look into it. You realize he isn't going to get better, and as much as you want him at home, that may not be the best thing for both of you. He might likely receive far better care, make new friends and be better off, all around. I'm sure you will beat yourself up about it--but life is hard and we often find ourselves in situations far sooner than we'd like.
As far as the "steps" you need to take--Igloo572 has great advice. I can only offer my sympathy. The "new norm" may make your life less stressful, but it will be a hard change.
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1949 - make finding a place for him your main resolution for the new year & "I can do this because his care needs to go to the next level" your mantra.
Realistically you could be looking at his being in a facility or a decade or two & your needing to also take care of yourself. You need to do whatever to optimize his care and your own well-being (both physical & financial) and plan on having both done within 2017. Unless you all have a huge retirement income and investment portfolio, he is going to need to apply to and become elgible for Medicaid so that he can go into a ltc facility that accepts meducaid. He will need to become impoverished for Medicaid. He NOT you; you as the "community spouse" /CS do not have to become impoverished. For couples dealing with the maze that is medicaid it is probably not ever a DIY project as there is just too too many details and you basically have your brain & body full between caregiving and your full time job. You all need an elder law atty, I'd suggest you get one that s NAELA certified as couples divesting & restructuring is more complex.

There are things you can do.... Like right now till early Feb. all the paperwork for taxes & those awards letters (like from SS & retirement) are being mailed out. You need to start a file or box for them to go into so your atty. can get an accurate picture of what's what. If some things need to be changed, they get changed so that he can be eligible maybe this summer. Your atty relationship probably is for years so I'd try to speak or meet with maybe 2 or 3 and find one that you mesh best with. Often it's little things that become sticky... like for Medicaid you are allowed 1 car as an exempt asset but most couples have 2 but if you give 1 car away it causes a transfer penalty as its "gifting"; another sticky is life insurance as most couples have each other as beneficiary but if you should get whacked by a bus that insurance $ to him from your death causes him to be ineligible for Medicaid and just who will be there to deal with this for him?..... It's planning for and changing things like this that make an atty invaluable.

Your apt to hear that you have to become impoverished. Not true. All states allow for the "Community Spouse" /CS to retain assets outside and seperate from his needing to become impoverished for medicaid. Most have it at $ 119k plus whatever exempt assets (house, car). In addition should you need some of his income to maintain your lifestyle, you can apply for CSRA or MMNA. Community spouse resource allowance / monthly maintenance needs allowance, think of it as kinda like alimony for the NH set. Some states have CSRA pretty high. Like for TX it is abt $ 2,800 a mo. So say hubs income is 3k a mo but you qualify for full MMNA so his medicaid required copay (or SOC share of cost) could just be $ 200 a month as you get the first $ 2800. Really it's not a DIY to wade through.

Atty may suggest you do a SPIA if you all have assets taking you over the $ 119k. Personally I hate annuities as an investment strategy, but for a CS doing a medicaid compliant SPIA to get hubs Medicaid eligible is a solid plan. At your age, I'd bet you will outlive any SPIA, so it totally makes sense. There aren't a lot of underwriters for theses type of SPIAs but a good atty will have FAs that they work with regularly who can get it done. I'd plan for maybe 6 - 8 mos to get legal & financials all Medicaid compliant. Whatever needs to be done BEfORE he applies for Medicaid, as your & his financials will be based on day 1 of his Medicaid application.

You start looking for places during that 6 -8 period of time . Getting hubs name on waiting lists. It may be that your first & second choice have no room. But a facility in the next county has a open bed & will take him "medicaid pending". You can move him to another & better LTC later on. It can be done, I moved my mom from NH # 1 to an eons better NH #2 at month 10; mom was Medicaid pending for 5 & 1/2 months then got the eligible letter at mo 6. & it took another couple of months to work out a glitch with her copay at NH #1. As an aside on this, her NH #2 deliberately had the rooms at the end of the wings by stairwell were set aside for spouse in the NH situations; Medicaid requires shared rooms so they all have roommates. But if there is something about the place that doesn't allow for this, the rules get suspended. The room next to stairs just too small for 2beds so single bed only! Often CS would spend the nite too as it had a small sofa bed. Hey what happens in a room stays in the room.....

Please realize that Medicaid is run by each state but within overall federal guidelines, so how TX does things could be way different than MN. good luck in all this. Make a plan & remember to include time for yourself.
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My brother in law was put into a nursing care facility in his late 40s, he passed in nursing care at 50. He was obese, had a couple of small strokes, and heart disease. His mother, who he'd lived with for years, was elderly and unable to care for him, said brother in law never married, had no children. Another brother in law was put in nursing care in his early 50s, lived several years between nursing facilities and hospitals with a rare heart disorder. He passed in a hospital. You really don't have a choice, I can tell you both of these men were able to have a nice life where they lived, they both lived in different facilities. One was even able to bring in his own recliner and a nicer tv than what the facility offered. Because these men were very vocal about what they wanted and well, bossy, they were able to pretty much have whatever they wanted in facilities. Everyone went to visit them both often. It took a huge load off their mother, and she made it to 80. She wouldn't have if she'd continued to take care of them.
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