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Mom, 93, has dementia and living in ALF. Brother, 55, has been thorn in our sides nearly his entire life. He barely dodged prison and seems to be clean now from a long-term heroin addiction, is underemployed. He manipulates everyone, especially Mom, always about money. Strong and smart dad who stood up to him and ruled the roost, passed away and put me in charge; I have DPOA and have control of finances, thank God. I have done everything I can to protect her assets according to the trust. But she will not be denied helping her precious baby boy (she refers to him like he's a child). Because of several instances where she's lost money, I keep her supplied with $60 for her wallet, more than she needs living in ALF. Now she's nastily demanding, daily, that I give her many hundreds of dollars so she "can feel comfortable". Sis and I know this is all about bro, so she can shower him with all the money she wants to, at any time. Mom has a long history of enabling him which is just what he DOESN'T need, he needs to finally stand on his own, and get a real job. I have been forced to give him rent money etc just to keep him off Mom's back and arousing her intense anxiety about his welfare. But she wants to give him far more than what I give him. She loves him so much more than she loves me and Sis, who do all the caregiving and watch out for her welfare, and she lures him to visit with the promise of money. I feel I'm in a balancing act between keeping him satisfied enough that he doesn't dump his problems on Mom and cause her terrible anxiety, and keeping her satisfied enough so she doesn't cause me sleepless nts. My brother has been a huge problem especially since Dad died that I even hired an Elder Care lawyer to advise me. But this new large money demand from Mom is stumping me. Anyone have this issue and have found a happy medium? There is no reasoning with Mom, and her anger is driving a wedge between us, and I'm her primary caregiver.

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I feel for you... im going through the same situation too. I feel so used by my mom.
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I'm impressed with your decision. Unfortunately, it's a no-win situation and apparently fairly common. It always makes me wonder why a parent will get so hooked into a dysfunctional child. Too often the "responsible" sibling spends a lot of time and emotion in these situations. Life is too short!
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Same sort of situation here with MIL's 55-year old deaf son that she has coddled all his life and who has lived with her for years. He contributes nothing to the household and like a child, stands by while she pays for everything when they're out anywhere. She has spent tens of thousands of dollars trying to keep him happy, including paying around $25,000 to bring a Filippino woman half his age that he met on the internet to the US. (She flew the coop after nine months of being a virtual prisoner.) My husband is POA and she had a meltdown this week because we had discontinued giving her cash and started buying her groceries and cooking her food ourselves when we had to clean all the rotten food out of her refrigerator because her dearest baby wasn't cooking (and she's no longer able). My husband assured her that her dearest received money monthly (disability) and he could pay if they ever went out. Her reply summed up his whole life and the source of all our problems: "He shouldn't have to." However, her nastiness toward my husband, when she's usually grateful for our help, was a reminder to us that our desire is to make her happy and honor her wishes as they were before the Alzheimer's, and unfortunately her wishes are to continue to treat him like a four-year old. We've tried to save her from him but she doesn't want to be saved. So we've started giving her some "mad money" and will turn a blind eye to where it ends up. It's the best we can do.
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I'm always amazed at the number of low life family members lurking around, taking advantage of an elderly parent, and making life miserable for the person(s) who are doing all the work. Most counties have an aging and disabilities department. You might start there for some guidance. If you can afford it (and a reputable attorney will give you an idea of cost), you might want to talk to an attorney to see what your options are. And, if there's any way to get your mom to designate you POA, do it! You can probably get the papers online, but you'd need to have a witness to you and your mother's signatures. Tell your deadbeat brother you're taking her shopping. I hope you get the help you need!
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Sorry I should have posted this in the question area. SP
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Here is my problem, any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. My mother is 84 and lives in her own home with my 50 year old quadraplegic brother. Who was disabled from car accident while driving drunk and high 20 years ago. She has arranaged for (in event of her death) my brother to live in the house for several months until house is sold and then equity will go to him. He has always been coddled by my mom but now she is seeing her mistake. He is very manipulative and has always been verbally abusive to my mother. He is trying to convince my mom to allow a women he met online to move in with them and take care of them.
This women is a resident of another country, has 2 children and they have never met. My mom is extremely against this idea and things blew up a few months ago and I told him that I would not allow him to bully my mom into something she was not comfortable with. I am the executor of the will, but I do not have a POA. I know he is plotting in the background to get this women and her kids here. I am not sure of his plans after that. I know he has sent this women money and has used various excuses not to pay his share of expenses. He listens in to phone calls between me and my mom and pretends he has changed and doesn't verbally abuse my mom as much. I beleive it is all a sham. I don't know how to protect my mom without being in her home all the time. I live about an hour away. Please if anyone has been in this position or something similar please comment. I have another sibling who lives 5 hours away but is a druggie with a gambling habit. I feel alone and don't know what steps to take to protect my mom. SP
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wow! I am in a similar situation where mom favors her sons and they abandoned her. I have a strong relationship with Christ and can clearly see and hear my part. It is to continue to honor my mother and father. That means if she wants to give "her" money away to them then I will not stop her. I have a choice to step away from being a caretaker who will keep peace and happiness as best I can. I can let her know this choice of mine and why I would choose it. I do know that my being her only caregiver was my choice,but truth be told I am not "the only one" able. I know also that God cares for "us" more than we even deserve. I see that my being a caregiver did not start out by being controlling, so it will not end that way iether. I will do my best to keep her happy and allow God to take care of the rest. Thank you for sharing.
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I have eleven years dealing with a controlling and manipulative mother and sister. The most important lesson I have learned is don't compromise your integrity for family members. Do the right thing, your heart will guide you if you think the process and senarios through thoroughly. Don't waiver, be firm but respectful. Above all don't feel guilty and learn to take the criticism with a grain of salt, after all people throwing stones at a glass house haven't walked in your shoes and no nothing about caregiving for the person you are charged with making decisions for...............
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Thank you Knownunknowns. I think we all realize this at some point, but it can feel like we just tell ourselves this to ease a "guilty" conscience. It is good to hear from someone else. It's so true.
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All caregivers be forwarned, especially POA, you have to be able to accept being hated by all of your family and friends of the family. Everyone will second guess every decision you make. You have to be strong willed and know in your heart that the decision you made is the right one and don't waiver. Guilt will eat you alive so make well informed decisions and use critical thinking to make those decisions............be firm with you charge. You are making decisions based on the incompetency of the individual you are caring for.........
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OMG you sound just like me!!! I have the exact same maniplative, underemployed brother who only calls and wants to see my mom to get money from her. He lost his wife and kids due to infidelity and his drinking. His life also fell apart after my dads death. My dad also was a big influence on my brother and was the only one who could set him straight. I think my brother is narcissistic and totally uses my mother to get money. My mom is 86 and has alzheimers and lives with my husband and me. My husband doesn't allow my brother in my home because he knows he just wants money from her. I finally had to seperate myself and not let his poison get in my life. I have POA for my mom and control her money, but she also ask me the same thing every wee. She wants me to give her $300 per week from her account. She wants to have money available to give to him if she see him. Luck for me, she onlt see him when I take her to see him. All I can tell you is that just give her a few dollars to keep her happy and maybe tell her she is running out of money and you need it for her care. I have learned to just stay away from my brother and not make him a part of my life. it is so hard when your mom will always love her son. You can't blame her but do your best to just give her enough money to keep her happy and tell her she is running out. If someone is upsetting you the best thing to do is DETACH from the situation. It is hard cause it is your flesh and blood. I hope this helps Good luck!
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I'm just wondering, if your mom has dementia, can't she somehow be declared incompetent? Maybe you need to talk to a lawyer. I'm POA for my dad and, mentally, he's fine. However, my mom's dementia is bad enough that her decision making skills are definitely compromised. I think you need some professional help.
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If Mom is diagnosed with dementia, she is not capable of conducting her own affairs.
Therefore, her DPOA does that for her.
The DPOA is to protect the elder who can no longer do that for themselves.
FAILING to do that, becomes a form of Elder Neglect.

No matter what she says, or how angry she gets, her manipulations are part of her illness. Part of the illness she has had all her life [co-dependent type?], plus now, it is magnified by her dementia.
It is common for siblings to sucker for her behaviors.
It is the DPOA's job to make sure all accounts are meticulously kept, in case of question, and to make sure the elder is properly cared for, no matter what they rant, yell, accuse, spit, bite, hit or whatever to try to get you to give in.

As DPOA, you are required to make sure her funds last long enough to take care of her, not your brother.
As long as you are doing that job in the most accountable way you can, pretty much nothing others say is meaningful.
They can slng legal suits all they want, but as long as you are being accountable with the bookkeeping, records keeping, they do not have a leg to stand on.
IF, OTH, you start suckering to giving more money to support your brother, THAT could get you removed as DPOA, since the funds are for HER, not him, and someone else could show that, and promise the judge to do it better than you.

Understand, children raised by dependent/co-dependent parents [dysfunctional], will all learn some or all of those same dysfunctions, and be very vulnerable to the mind-games they play. You are one of those children, and so are your sibs.
They all manifest it a bit differently, but its still "an elephant in the room".
IF you recognize this, and take steps to set realistic, rational limits on them and Mom, and for yourself, and stick to them, as well as keeping good records of what transpires daily between you all, things have a good chance to work out to keep taking care of Mom the way it was set up when more rational thinking was present.
Good luck! It is hard work, and can be emotionally draining. Make sure you keep your needs met, too. Only you can choose when things have gone to a point of giving it up.
Oh--and keep in mind, a POA can be turned over to a 3rd party, too--there are people who do that job for elders who have families that argue, are irresponsible, or otherwise not able to care for the elder. IF things get too overwhelming for you, that might be an alternate path for you to take, to protect Mom from brother's misuse of funds.
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To Beekybird- (sorry i got your name wrong in my last post)- Amen to "simplicity works best." And remember that the problem with dealing with mothers is that the argument that they need to save the money for their own care often does not work. Many mothers will sacrifice just about anything for their children. You may just stick with assuring her that he's okay, she's okay and "$60 is all that's avail..." oh, you know :-)
Ditto on you getting some time to yourself!
BTW- is there any way to open up the brother's annuity so he can access x amount monthly starting now? He may still try to sweet-talk your mom out of extra, but maybe he'd back off a little.
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Beecky I think that is wise why put yourseld through so much misery -the older I get the more I get it to try to take care of me-after a while it becomes easier to push negative people away we can not change them only how we react to them-instead of crying with my mothers' firey arrows I am practing the face she has been giving me since I was born she simply does not like it is what it is. You take care of you ok.
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In response to IsntEasy's remarks, I shd clarify. Bro has been set up with a generous "annuity" via the Trust after Mom passes, he will be unable to access any principal. It's cast in stone, legally. So the cash he's getting now is chipping away at my and Sis's inheritance and Mom's living expenses. Rich, eh? I think he's clever enough to realize that. Thank you all for your viewpoints and suggestions. I like "that's all that is available." Similar to what I've tried to explain to her. With dementia I find that simplicity works best. Pointing out that she's blowing thru her money and may have to move to a new place that isn't so pleasant if the money doesn't last, another good one. And I do think I'd better spend less time with Mom, for my own sanity. Thank you all!
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I agree with Mary -can you limit you time with Mom and you might want to remind her that AL is a privalge for people with money and when her money is all gone because she has given it all away to dear son then it will be a nursing home for her with a roomate-also in order to get on medicaide she will have to account for how her money was spent for 5 years and someone has to pay it back there is no hiding from that anymore-but I think I would let er know if she keeps harping on helping your brother you will not be in her life as much and if she gives POA to him her money will be gone very soon-you can not change her only yourself and if seeing her so often upsets you -you may have to detatch some from her unless you can think of another way for your stree to be lowered.
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I wasn't finished :-)
Isnteasy has set up a good system giving her mother $60 to spend as she sees fit. I think that she should try her best to stick with that; be pleasant but be a broken record and whenever the mom wants more money, just remind her that she can give as much of the $60 to the brother as she wants to, but "That is all that's available". I say, no more details. Just repeat "That's all that is available". Assure her that you are making sure her expenses are taken care of, but $60 is ... "all that is available". It often pays to have a trusted professional from the bank, lawyers office, or a friend of hers get your back on that.
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I agree with knownunknowns that there should be no inheritance to anyone prior to the mother passing, but the difficulty here, as I see it, is keeping the mother placated and Isnteasy from having to bear her anger.
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Isn'tEasy's suggestion I disagree with. Our situations may be different though. My parent has Alzheimer's and has been declared incompetent, to remove me as her POA, my sibling would have to prove I wasn't acting in my parents best interest. Giving the brother his inheritance early could put their mother in a position of outliving her finances. There should be no inheritance until a parent has passed away. POA doesn't act if the parent is capable of making their own decisions. In my opinion, the POA, in this instance would not be fulfilling their duty if they allow the parent to give money to the manipulative brother resulting in the parent outliving their resources.

My advice, this brother will be a thorn in your side until you are 6 foot under,
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I'm an only child, and always the "bad cop" even when I'm doing good things, simply because I can't please mom and even helping her causes her to complain. That's how she is.
BTW- I want to thank you for reminding me that wishing I had siblings is wasted energy. It doesn't mean that things would be better if I did have them.
I don't have any practical advice for you, but but I would like to point out something.
It may feel like your mother "loves" your brother more, but I'm sure it only seems that way because (1) by being primary caretaker, you are seen as the mean parent, and (2) while your relationship with mom is that of a responsible and caring adult child, his is still that of a kid needing the parent to support him, and that will probably never change.
You are doing the right thing by protecting her nest egg, and that is for everyone's sake.
Can you just keep repeating to her that the money is in trust (or whatever) to make sure that it doesn't run out, emphasizing that this is so Brother will "always be taken care of" ? sometimes there is not changing a parent's mind, and I have found that as long as I know in my heart that I am doing what is really best for her, I have to just make myself ignore the complaining and just keep doing what's right. It's exactly like not giving in when your small child insists on having things you are NOT going to give them.
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It sounds like you are talking about my ex-husband. Don't believe for a minute he is no longer using heroin. He will be able to function unless he is in need of more. My ex was an alcoholic, addicted to cocaine and now heroin, too. Ex in-laws are affluent, and even though he robbed their home several times, battered me nearly to death, they have paid for lawyers, rehab, rent, and now bought him a condo in a nice neighborhood. They pay all his bills. They used to write him checks with 'drugs' on the memo line when they were angry with him. His mother says he is a lost soul. I did what I had to do, and what you may have to do also. I sent him to prison. No way is he sober. Drugs are illegal. My ex was not only using, but after getting out of prison the first time he started dealing large amounts. His parents paid for it. The police can help you. A confidential informant can bust him in no time. I never received a dime in child support from him. Never. He was dangerous. Your brother will be dangerous if he can't get the drugs he needs. 'His body needs drugs like your body needs insulin. He needs it to stay alive now', I was told once. I am diabetic. It will make keeping Mom's money out of his hands, and keeping your POA intact.
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As we have been told, it's mom's money and she can do what she wants with it. I too am in the situation of a sibling not being in the picture for 30 years to swoop in and gain POA and take all of mom's money, home, life insurance and all and put it into a trust for her and her kids. We have been to court, mediation, and continue to have no justice. When our father passed away, we were told his wishes died with him. I am having to distance myself from the situation due to the unbearable hurt and manipulative sister. Stay strong but remember to take care of yourself. Your mom can still remove you as DPOA if she wishes and feels pushed to do it. They can remove anyone anytime. Bear that in mind as a wedge is forming between you. I was told by my attorney that as long as mom was not deemed incompetent that she could do as she pleased and believe me after going thru it, it is hard to have them declared. Best wishes.
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I can tell you are hurt by your mom's apparent favoritism of your brother. (I also can empathize with the situation of having a sibling who never gets their act together.) That said, it's your mom's money and to the degree that she doesn't impoverish herself, she should be allowed to 'help your brother out'. Of course you know that she's enabling and that it's no help at all, but he is her child. Depending upon your mom's cognitive state, could you have a discussion with her about your brother's long term situation? If you're able to be objective about it – I'm not saying that to be critical of you, I'm just recognizing that would be VERY difficult to set aside decades of pain your brother has inflicted on your family – you might talk to mom about setting up your brother's inheritance now in a way that will provide for him when she's gone (a trust or annuity that he can't plunder, but that will give him a monthly check, even if it's only a small amount). I'm sure part of the reason she's such an easy touch for him is that she's worried about his prospects for the future (and likely always has been). You and your sister have probably always been a source of pride and comfort for her while he is a source of anxiety.
Making some decisions now might also protect you and your sister from your brother's mooching once mom is gone. He would surely run right through his inheritance and then, eventually, your phone would ring. My friend has a brother who was a similar sponge on their mom. Though he and she hadn't spoken for years, he didn't hesitate to harass her for money once his inheritance was gone.
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