I posted back in February and then in April about my 78-year-old MIL moving with us out of state. My last posts have more detail that would be impossible to reiterate here, but bottom line is she was supposed to come stay with us as an independent roommate, but the week she got here she admitted that she lied about her income and needed us to essentially take care of her financially. After several months of paying all her bills, I nipped this in the bud — I began enforcing the original agreement that she was to pay $500 towards rent, and after months of paying her car insurance, medications, groceries, phone bill, etc I began flat out refusing. I told her she needed to get a job or figure something else out but that we would no longer be paying her way. She resisted very dramatically, acting as if we were forcing her to go without her medications and food, and allowing her car insurance to lapse so she could lament that WE “let it go unpaid,” and telling a neighbor that we refused to pay to fix her flat tire so that the neighbors chipped in and bought her a tire (😳), but I firmly kept telling her that she is a grown up and must pay her own way because we are still a young family and our responsibility is to our young child, not her.
Finally, after many weeks of my taking this tact, she got a small part time job in retail up the street. She now has her own money but still refuses to buy her own groceries and if I refuse to include her in all our meals (which was getting very expensive), she’ll act like we are abusing her and start saying that the doctor is concerned she’s losing weight or may be diabetic. It's all manipulation, and it's caused a lot of grief in my otherwise-perfect marriage because I finally began refusing to reward this behavior (my husband still allows himself to be manipulated by her and guilt-tripped —he always has).
After several really crazy incidents (her speaking badly about me daily to my 9 year old daughter, treating our daughter badly when shes angry at me, pretending to “break down” on the highway and making my husband leave a business meeting to go retrieve her to make him feel guilty for telling her we would no longer be driving her everywhere and running all her errands since she insists on keeping her $500/month car payment, and $200/month insurance, catching her in repeated lies), we told her this is not working and she needs to find her own place ASAP. However, she has refused to do so, and it has become clear to us that if we want her out, WE must find the place and WE must pay the security deposit and WE must move her. She no longer speaks to me, making my home so tense I can hardly bear it.
Anyway, here’s my question: when she first moved in, I took her to several doctors appointments to have her tested for dementia. The doctor says she does not show any dementia, just normal aging. However, her behavior is so bizarre we feel he has to be wrong. Aside from the constant lying and refusal to do anything for herself and all the daily manipulation, (I know this sounds really crazy) we think she has been cutting our clothes. When we told her we expect her to help out around the house, we began finding bleach stains and clear scissor cuts in our clothes. Last week, I left my phone on the counter and when I came back in the house, it was gone. We searched for hours, and after I mentioned I was going to try to GPS locate it in the house, it suddenly appeared in a place I already checked a several times. I found out yesterday she had “accidentally” told her doctor’s office to put all her copays on MY HSA card, draining my health account of over $300. What is my next move? Should I have her re-evaluated? Maybe she needs assisted care?