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Last July I suggested my husband bring my 100 year old mother-in-law to live closer to us because she was living across the country in her own home, with her husband living in a nursing home and members of our family were stealing all her money from her. Most of the family where she lived had passed away or couldn't help her anymore. He went and picked her up and I let him know that she could stay for a few months and he needed to find a nursing home or something for her. My husband and I still work full-time and we just bought a smaller townhome because our girls are both grown. Of course once she moved in, he hasn't even looked for anything to move her out. She is a very sweet lady, but even though we set up a bedroom for her, she has wanted to sleep on our couch everyday and snore and talk in her sleep. Everyday when I come home from work, that has been the situation until recently--her snoring on my couch and talking. It was like having another child in the home again. My husband ignored it, but it was like nails on a chalkboard. Then, a month ago, she has been digressing and I suggested he take her in for medical advice. They kept her in the hospital for a week, because her thyroid was off and to do testing. They ended up setting up hospice and my husband had the option of a nursing home or our house and he chose our house. We discussed it and I hesitantly agreed; I didn't want to insist on a nursing home and she die the next day. So, now the whole downstairs of my townhouse is a hospital room with bed, oxygen tanks, potty chairs, her clothes, books, dishes etc., I love her and I know she could die at anytime, she is 101, so, I feel guilty not wanting her in my living room and I've told my husband I just want to leave because I work all day and have to come home to a depressing hospital room with her snoring and talking with the whole downstairs dedicated to her. I have to sneak upstairs to have space. I just bought this home three months before she moved down here and this home isn't big or really set up to have her here. My husband's attitude is that she isn't going to live forever, and that is true, but it has already been six months and her needs are only becoming more. Am I selfish for wanting her in a nursing home where they could care for her needs since we work all day and can't? Our 18 year old daughter just graduated from HS last May, and she has become her part-time caregiver during the day and it is really stifling her moving on with her life and getting a job or going to college, because she doesn't want to disappoint her father and not stay home with her grandma everyday. She doesn't have a life with friends, a job, college, etc, because she is tending to her grandma during the day. She loves her and they have a precious relationship, but I feel like my husband is wanting to put our daughter's life on hold to take care of his mother. She is not a nurse, and even though now we have hospice because of her dementia, I don't feel this should be my daughter's full-time job. We work all day, and this is what I come home to everyday. I can't have people over, and I don't have a place of solace, it is depressing and I feel like I want to run away. I am almost 50 years old, I have been working on a doctorate degree that I have almost completed and my girls are finally both grown now. I have been responsible for taking care of someone for the last 26 years of my life, and I was just ready to have a nice house that was clean, that I could decorate the way I wanted, and now my lower half of my house is a hospital room. Help. I want to know that I am not selfish and regret insisting her to go to a nursing home. Every time I tell my husband my thoughts, he just gets angry and says, "fine, I will put her in one." And then I feel guilty in case she did die soon while in there. Thanks for any help.

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It absolutely should not be your daughter’s job! If he wants mom at home, it’s your husband’s job.

It’s selfish and inconsiderate of him to expect you to sacrifice your home and even worse, expecting his daughter to put her life on hold... but hey, it keeps him from feeling bad about placing mom in a nursing home.

He is not doing this for mom. He’s doing this for himself, so he can have her die without feeling any guilt. When she does die, he’ll be proud he kept mom home, feeling like he was a good son. Never mind how it ruined you and your daughter.

You may have to pull a “she goes or I go”... but he may indeed choose mommy over you. He obviously doesn’t care about anything but his own feelings in this situation. She needs placement ASAP.

This sets a bad precedent for your daughter. She’s learning to put herself last, sacrifice her youth, that her goals don’t matter... to be a people-pleaser, all that matters is everyone else is happy. You don’t want her to eventually be in a marriage with this mentality.

I swear, it’s like some men never left the t*t!!
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pointyocelot Jan 13, 2021
Thank you. It is really good to hear someone else that sees what I see about this situation. I agree, he has been really selfish our whole marriage and this has just been another example of it. I agree with what you said about setting a bad precedent for my daughter as well. I struggle so much with her sacrificing, even though she has had a good attitude about wanting to help, I feel like it is unfair to her for this to be her life. Thank you for your input, it helps a lot.
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Nursing home or divorce are the only two options, really.

He sounds like a real pos making his daughter sacrifice the best years of her life to care for a 100+ year old woman.
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She will die when she dies, it could be tomorow, next month or longer.

It is not the job of an 18 year old girl to provide care to her grandmother while your husband is at work. This is wrong on all levels.

You have the right to come home to a sanctuary, not a hospital room.

I fully support you in wanting your home back and asking your husband to put her into a nursing or Hospice home.
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If you aren't going to put her in a nursing home, you need to get in home caregivers scheduled. Your daughter's part time hours are a good place to start, and your after work hours, add a weekend day.

If she has taken over the living room, then repurpose the bedroom allocated to her as a alternative living room, so you have somewhere to be. Leave the caregiver with her in the living room and take your guest into the sitting room.

If you are going to try this for a month or sixty, try to add ways to make it tolerable.
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What irritates me is your husband's angry attitude towards YOU in this situation, when you agreed to have grandma come stay for a few months, not a few years. "Putting" grandma into a hospice home/center sounds really bad, when in reality, placing her in a hospice home/center so she can be looked after 24/7 by professionals is the right thing to do. Not some uncaring, nasty thing people do who don't give a flying fig about their loved one. Plus, your husband seems fine with burdening his WIFE and his DAUGHTER with grandma's care, but what about HIM? Is he tending to her at all? Is he changing diapers, wiping butts, doling out meds, ANYTHING? I would venture to guess the answer is no and he's playing the guilt card on you while 'supervising' her care from afar.

You need to have a heart to heart talk with your husband here and remind him that HE is the one who's breaking the terms of the original agreement here, not you. A hospice home is in order now for grandma, before you're all left with a terrible memory of this woman's last days and your daughter is perhaps traumatized as a result. Visiting her in a hospice home will allow you to retain special memories of your times together rather than these bitter recollections you'll wind up with.

So many people seem to insist that it's the only 'loving' thing to do to keep elders 'at home' to die, never taking into account the true burden it presents to an entire family. Not to mention, grandma can hang on for a year or more, who knows? Only God knows the answer to that question. She will continue to deteriorate and require more & more hands on care as she does, too, which is something you need to keep in mind.

I find the whole 'Covid19' issue to be irrelevant, frankly, because the woman is already at the end of her journey here on earth. She will certainly NOT die immediately if she goes into care; my mother is 94 and living in Memory Care and not ONE single resident has come down with the virus. I'm looking into placing her in a local nursing home soon and it's the same situation there; no cases of the dreaded virus there either. Don't let unfounded fear drive your decision on this matter, okay?

Wishing you the best of luck with a tough situation and a husband who's being difficult.
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Homecare123 Jan 15, 2021
I think it depends on where you live. Multiple nursing homes in my area have had huge out breaks with many deaths. For example a facility with 100 residents and 55 staff members had 19 deaths and 92 cases total. We are considering some care options for my family members but not until COVID is managed better.
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Oh my gosh. What a mess! I am so sorry.

You and your daughter are stuck in the middle.

You are very busy with work and school.

Your daughter needs to move ahead in her life.

Your husband feels as if he should provide care for his mom. It’s terribly sad.

What does her doctor say about all of this? Did he feel a nursing home would have been more suitable?

Are you in a high Covid area?

I wish that your husband would have selected a nursing facility.

Do you know of a suitable facility for her?

What exactly was his objection? He could visit her there.

I wonder how this is effecting your daughter too.
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pointyocelot Jan 13, 2021
Thank you for your response. They have suitable facilities and we are not in a high Covid area, but I am sure that has definitely played into his decision making. I appreciate your feedback so much, it really helps to hear another person's perspective that isn't directly involved.
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Ok, so I might be the only one that disagrees to some extent with the others here. While yes, it is a major inconvenience for you to have your 101 yr. old MIL in the lower half of your house, it was you yourself that agreed(although hesitantly)to have her brought back home from the hospital, when you then had the perfect opportunity to say no at that time. You say that it was because you would feel guilty if she would die shortly after being placed in a nursing home. You also say the same thing in your second to last sentence. You seem to be talking out of both sides of your mouth. You want her out, but yet you don't, because you don't want the guilt if she would to die shortly after being placed. You can't have your cake and eat it too. You either make the best of the situation, and be grateful that your daughter gets to spend this precious time with her grandmother, or you put your foot down, and get her placed in a nursing home. Your MIL is 101, for crying out loud. She will not be here too much longer. And instead of looking at the fact that your daughter is helping with her, negatively, you should look at the positive side. Your daughter is learning some great life lessons, that cannot be taught in a book. She is learning that life is not all about her, and how to put others before herself. That's a great life lesson to learn, while she's still young. You say that they have a "precious" relationship, so to me that is time well spent with her grandmother, who some day soon, will no longer be with her. If she's really wanting to go to college, she could take some online courses, that she could do in the evening when you and your husband are home, along with spending time with her friends then as well. And if you were really concerned about your daughter having to care for her grandmother, you would look into hiring some outside help to come in to assist with her instead.
There is nothing easy about caring for a loved one in your home, but it can be done, if all parties are on board. And if they're not, then changes must be made, despite the feelings of guilt. In your case, you know that there is light at the end of the tunnel, because of your MIL's age. This too shall pass. Perhaps sooner than you even know. Wishing you wisdom and discernment in this situation.
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LoopyLoo Jan 13, 2021
This is bad advice, on many levels.

Agreed that OP did consent to having MIL there, albeit with reservations. That was a mistake, and I think OP knows it. But it's obvious by now that it is not working out and something needs to change soon.

I doubt the daughter is happy to put her life on hold. Caretaking for a 101-year-old woman is not "precious time with her grandmother". Visiting would be. Caretaking is not. It's not precious time when she's been pretty much forced to do it to keep the peace. If grandma were able to still communicate her wisdom, that might make it more 'precious'. She's having to babysit, watching grandmother die. That is not precious at all.

Her friends are out living their lives while she is home cleaning bedpans. She's not learning the life lessons she ought to at her age. Saying "she's learning life is not all about her" is unfair. Like she's a selfish, bratty teen and this is giving her some humility. She didn't need to be forced into this role just to learn a lesson.

The mentality of "suffering is a blessing and keeps you humble" is not true and keeps many people in abusive and unfair situations.

It does a disservice to mom when she isn't getting care from trained professionals. The father won't hire anyone because hey, he's got the wife and daughter to do it for free!

And 101 is certainly old, but does not mean she'll pass away any time soon. This could go on for a year or more. I know people whose parents died at 103.
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I struggle with this fear. I have two people I am caring for in my home. I have had to create pretty strict boundaries with my mom and grandma about how my house looks and how I want it to be. I want it to be their home too but it is MY house. If it were me I would take a couple days and get your MIL’a room set up move everything in there and if anyone gave me guff I’d tell them to move it back themselves but not to be surprised if I put all back again. Enlist your daughter to help move everything- she won’t want to move it back. If grandma tries to move Back on the couch tell daughter to steer her out of the living room. It might sound passive aggressive but you can do things to make it difficult to come back to the couch big throw pillows, move furniture a little. My grandma’s memory is horrible and those types of physical barriers helped her remember the rules. When she got mad about the barriers I said she could “move them herself but please put it back how you found it”. It was too hard and she moved on quickly. As for your daughter, I would line her out with something else ASAP and tell your husband that daughter has classes (or whatever) starting on X day and he’ll need to hire someone to take daughters place. Unless, your daughter is happy and helping YOU with this situation. My daughter helps me so much with my mom and grandma. I wouldn’t be able to do it without her. However she starts college at the end of the month and I have no expectations for her to do as much while taking classes.
My mom has a terminal illness and I don’t know she’ll be around another 6 months which makes me wonder how long my grandma will live. My husband and I have some pretty big plans when our daughter graduates and we will have to move grandma somewhere at that point. I am firm about deadlines. I know it will be hard but it’s all about planning and prepping people well in advance. If your MIL is on hospice she can’t have that much time left. I would tell husband “hey if we rearrange the house, I think I’ve got about a year in me” after that we are going to have to move her”. Or whatever amount of time the two of you agree on. It’s all about being kind and open to meeting each other’s needs. You can Be open to him wanting his mother safe and nearby and he should be open to you having a time limit. You mentioned something about him “always” being some way leave the past out of it.
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I would hang on now while covid is rampant. It would mean instant death for someone her age. I would make an agreement with your husband, that either Mom is placed after that, or you and you daughter (who is being used whether she loves her or not, and if/only if she agrees with you) will be leaving to get your own studio until Mom is placed. That makes him full time caregiver.
Wishing you good luck. He is correct. She is 101. We do have a caregiver who has an elder in family who lived to 107. So, there's that. As I said, while Covid is rampant I would not move her to an unvaccinated unit, given we are within 6 mos to a year of this being done.
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