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I am 62 years old, never married, no children, and no family other than my 93 and 94 year old parents. I left a great job 3 years ago to care for my mentally and physically declining parents. It has truly been 3 years of hell, but they are now secured separately in a skilled nursing facility and an assisted living facility, and my life is finally better.
This experience has certainly challenged me to look at my own future, and to ensure I have the proper legal documents in place in the event that I am no longer able to handle my financial affairs and make my own decisions regarding medical care.
Certainly, I have friends, but they are my age and older, and I do not expect they would be in a position to help me.
What do people do when they have no family to act on their behalf?

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Chicago1954, is the Concordia you mentioned known by another name? I tried to find more info about it on the web, and only found info about Concordia University.
Thanks!
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AlwaysMyDuty, that is sort of what I am thinking, about the atty being the DPOA, and perhaps the care facility could have the medical POA but I will consult with an eldercare atty.
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ellentz, sorry I must've been writing while you were. Can you have an attorney be your DPOA, etc? I've heard people say a lawyer had POA so I think they do that type of thing. Maybe someone else has more info. It's just an idea.
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As MishkaM stated,it really does suck the wind out of you when you realize you have to plan your elder years. I have kids and grand kids but who's to say they'll be around when the time comes. I've got the documents in place and a list of elder care facilities in my area which I will update periodically. I've verbally stated my wishes. I like Chicago's suggestion about the care facility waiting list. I don't know what else can be done. I do know that I've tried to be prepared so as not to be a burden on my kids. That would break my heart to know I made their life a living hell like so many of our parents have to us.
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Chicago1954 and MishkaM, I greatly appreciate your comments and thoughts, and particularly your desire not to burden loved ones. As we've read many times on this forum, caregiving responsibilities can destroy marriages, families, and relationships, as well as shut down caregivers' lives for many years.
My question is not about finding facilities - there are plenty of them in the Dallas area where I live, but WHO would manage my finances AND healthcare decisions, assuming I have dementia? Would an eldercare attorney do that?
MishkaM, I'm impressed that you have thought so much about this yourself, at your young age, and I do understand why. I am encouraged by your thoughts that this issue is becoming more prevalent, and that solutions will evolve for those of us in this situation.
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Hi ellantz,
I am 41, married with one child but my daughter has a syndrome ( similar to Down's) and , realistically, will not be able to care for me or my husband as we grow older. Nor will we be grandparents, I think. As I try to balance the needs of my aging parents and my daughter I came to this conclusion and , well, it did kinda suck the wind outta me but I look to God for comfort and am trying to place this worry in His hands. BUT, I do find great comfort in Chicago1954's post!!- and , as I age, I will look into such places for my care. I have a few nieces and nephew's but do not want to count on them to take care of me.
Also, I think that there is a trend for people of my generation to not get married and have children as much as the last few generations. Many of my high school friends , at 40+, are not married ( my brother is single and plans to stay that way at 45 ) and do not have children so I hope there will be even more options down the road. And the friend's that do have kids have one or two only-usually. Who is to say the one child or even the two children will want to care for their parents. It is wise, I think, for anyone and everyone to prepare for their OWN care and not rely on their children. IMO. So, at 62, I would say you are ahead of the game. :0)
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I know what I think that I would do and probably will do, as it shouldn't be up to my grown children to step in.

In IL. there is a wonderful organization called Concordia that has all levels of care. It is not too soon to get on a waiting list, there. You don't have to go, when you get to the top. But you don't drop off of the list, either.

I am determined not to leave my children property and real estate that they have to mess with. None of them live here and they are all employed full time.

So, if I am at all able, I will do it myself, even though I have relatives.
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