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For the last 10 years, my husband, the youngest of 3 siblings, has been given no choice but to take care of his 82 year old elderly mother who, now has dementia. NOBODY ASKED HIM IF HE WANTED TO - he was FORCED to. Reason being is because, his sister, who has Power of Attorney, and lives 3 STREETS OVER from us, decided she was "done taking care of her "overbearing" mother and also because her mother "didn't help her in a time of financial crisis", she decided she wanted nothing to do with her. Because she did it for most of her life and now it was OUR turn". She never bothers with her mother. Visits once in a blue moon. Tries to convince her mother to sell the house and rent it out - because she's in debt and wants to pay her debts off (this is the truth because she asked her mom for money and her mom said NO! *THIS* is the reason she wants nothing to do with her mother!)

The problem is - she has Power of Attorney. My husband and I can no longer take care of his mother. She no longer wipes herself, and it's a huge problem to get her to take a shower. Sometimes she won't shower for days. She's eligible for homecare and they (his siblings) had put her on a waiting list for a home and consulted a social worker through CCAC (Ontario) but nothing ever came of it, but because his sister has Power of Attorney, nobody (even his brother who lives in California), has helped get the ball rolling. His brother can only do so much from where he's at (apparently)

Now my husbands mother doesn't know my name, sometimes doesn't know where she is, and constantly asks where HE IS. We no longer have a life. Quite frankly since this was put on us - we never did. Nobody asked us to take care of her. We were forced into it, and gave up our life. We don't even have children and my husband said "I'm forced to take care of my mother because nobody will help me. How am I gonna help you take care of a child?" So we have no life.

**PLEASE DO NOT TELL US "SHE'S HIS MOTHER - HE OWES IT TO HER TO TAKE CARE OF HER** For the last 10 years - even when she wasn't sick, she's been SO overly CO-DEPENDENT, that she CONSTANTLY NEEDS HIM IN HER SIGHTS. This can really wear a person down, and cause a lot of problems for someone trying to make a living, and trying to live a life. But now that she's sick, she's LITERALLY LIKE A PIECE OF VELCRO. My husband deserves a life. My husband deserves to be able to get up and go to work, without his mother begging him not to go because "She's scared". - No - she's also manipulative. But her dementia has now amplified this trait she has. It's extremely DIFFICULT.

He has admitted he cannot take care of her. He's asked for help and has received none. To him it's not about the money. He doesn't care about it. He wants to get her into a home, but his sister is so money hungry, she figures as long as there's someone taking care of her, why spend the money on a home?

HE ***CANNOT** take care of her. She deserves the dignity of someone being able to wash her. Her SON ***cannot** do it. Will not do it. He does not feel comfortable bathing his mother or wiping her private parts. He has asked for help several times and nobody is stepping up.

His brother lives in the States and takes her occasionally to give him a break, but his sister NEVER HELPS. But taking her occasionally for a few months is only a short term fix for an impending long term problem.

How can we revoke Power of Attorney from his sister if she doesn't care for her mother? She wants nothing to do with her. All she wants is MONEY.

This has practically ruined my husband and taken every ounce of happiness out of him. He is extremely resentful towards his sister (and yes, a bit towards his mother because she;'s always been manipulative and extremely co-dependant after his father died), and her dementia makes it 100 times worse.

Any advice?

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THANK YOU!
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Forget what may or may not have been done in the past, get on the phone TODAY with CCAC/LHIN and ask to speak to your MIL's case manager. How was she evaluated without you knowing what is going on when she lives with you? Make it clear that YOU are her full time caregivers and not SIL, that YOU need support asap and have reached burn out. And yes, I would insist on having POA if at all possible, you can download info and forms from the Ministry of the Attorney General website.

Also be sure you/hubby are listed as contact person and not SIL so that nobody drops the ball going forward from here.

A further postscript: contact her doctor and get them working with you as well
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She is no longer competent. She can't/won't even wipe herself, and doesn't/can't cook for herself, and won't even bathe. She also will lie about these things and tell us she's done them. Sometimes she will say there's no toilet paper there and I'm looking right at it telling her there is. She often doesn't know who I am, and she often doesn't know where she is.

I personally think they've left it too long, (and I personally think his sister left it too long on purpose) to get to the point that once her mother has lost all her faculties, to take full advantage of her.
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As long as your mother in law is competent, you can have her sign another form revoking the original POA and assigning a new POA. I highly recommend having your husband speak to an elder care attorney. They can guide you best on what your options are. Hugs to both you and your husband.
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We are desperate to put her ANYWHERE. She desperately needs care. She needs 24/7 eyes on her.

I'll be completely honest (as an outsider here, I'm only his wife, and sometimes I feel maybe I've been kept in the dark about stuff) = but I also think my husband has been kept in the dark about stuff too!

My MIL has been evaluated by a social worker from the (formerly known as CCAC). She was told she was covered for home care. Where papers even filed? My husband was under the impression his older siblings would see to it (because they said "we will take care of it") - this was 2 years ago. Nothing ever came of it. As for a waiting list? It's been 2 years already and we've heard nothing. I asked my husband "Are you sure your sister even put her on a waiting list? Or is she just feeding you B.S?"

I guess you can put a bit of blame on my husband for not having the sense to ask for copies of documentation, but to be honest, he's so mentally drained, it forced him to almost stop caring because of his resentment.
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Gee, I'd put her in the car and drop her off at sister's house.

No one forced you or your husband. When sister could longer care for her, that was the time to step back and say " she needs more support than we can give her"
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She was on a wait list for homecare and long term care but nothing came of it... why not? Are you sure you understand how the system works? You don't have to be POA to contact CCAC (and by the way they changed their title now and you will be contacting your local LHIN). Was she actually approved for and on the wait list for long term care? So did her name come up and she declined the bed, or is she still waiting? Would you consider putting her in a place with a shorted wait list, with the option to move her later?
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Chances are, that's the route we're going to have to take.

I know my husband has faults. Sometimes he won't stand up to either of them because his reasoning is "Why should I? I'm not going to get anywhere" - imagine fighting and fighing for help for so long and nobody gives a hoot...that's why he's at his wits end. It's really making him resent his mother too. Not because she's sick, but because she has never ever EVER let him have a normal life. In the beginning, when we first met, he was living at home because his mother was a widow. He also worked from home. When we got married, a few years later (we've been married for 8 years, together for 10) it just got worse. His mother has manipulative traits, and possessive traits towards him. (Treats him like "he's mine - not yours") Now - imagine having dementia, and constantly saying "don't leave me" when he's on his way to work? Or "Where are you going?" - when he just goes to the washroom or goes into another room? Sometimes she will even ask where he is when he's already IN the room!

He even said to me, "I hope nobody ever ends up with a mother like mine". He is heartbroken that he ended up with a mother like this, but he's not the kind of person that will see her suffer. He recognizes that she needs better care and he's just not equipped to do it. He's admitted this. But his sister doesn't care enough to help her, and I think his brother - who lives in California, isn't doing much either - but we aren't on bad terms with him.
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Time for your husband to stand up to his sister and other siblings and tell them he no longer is able to care for mom -- she needs more care and assistance. He should have a plan on where he will place mom (look at some nearby residential care facilities) and costs and tell sister and sibs this is what has to be. Get their buy-in.

If sister has POA -- does it cover both financial + health and well being? If so, SHE IS LEGALLY RESPONSIBLE; not your husband. So he just turns mom's care over to her and tells her, mom will be moving to her home or outside care in 30 days and sister is responsible for the bills via POA -- which would give sister right to sell or rent mom's home to help meet residential care expenses.

You may have to go to court if sister will not cooperate and sue for POA rights or guardianship. Thats expensive and you cannot reimburse yourself for these court fees at least here in the US.
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Well he feels forced. Nobody had the decency to ask him to take care of her. He has never been able to make life changing arrangements to be able to accommodate this. Our livelihood is affected by this. His sister just completely washed her hands of her mother and has left total responsibility onto my husband.

I told my husband -the only bum I wipe will be my OWN mothers.  But even in saying that- I felt so bad for my MIL one day that I offered to help her bathe. She flipped out at me because she forgot who I was, and wouldn't let me go near her.
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I understand your feelings, but the "forced" issue is confusing me a bit. Did someone put a gun to your husband's head to "force" him to take his mother in? I don't believe this is a situation where she has to continue to live with you.

"HE ***CANNOT** take care of her. She deserves the dignity of someone being able to wash her. Her SON ***cannot** do it. Will not do it. He does not feel comfortable bathing his mother or wiping her private parts. " So who's doing it...you? I hope not!
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