still trying to take care of mom - and smile. NOT.

funkillApril 21, 2008

Hi all Â

Well, it certainly has been a long time since IÂve posted. How time flies  sometimes even when youÂre not having fun. This is what IÂve been doing Â..

I have had a very difficult year with my mom. I placed her in what appeared to be the "best" ALF in our area. It has been the best at draining her savings  thatÂs for sure. Now sheÂs about out of money and IÂm trying to find alternate living for her. Because of her age (65) and high level of functioning, there arenÂt any real good alternatives. What she needs is someone to manage her medications, provide her prepared meals, minimal laundry and give her HEAVY cues on when to bathe and clean her dishes. I researched getting her an apt close to my home but the cost of having a nurse dispense her medications and diabetes management makes it cost prohibitive. (I am her only living relative  so I would need to hire several services to help with her care.) Fortunately, I did find an ALF that is about $2,700 less than where she is now and her monthly income should almost cover the cost. It is not memory-care, but itÂs the best I can find for her. Thankfully she is not a flight concern and (unfortunately) spends 23 hrs a day on her couch watching TV. She will not use her bed, interact with any other residents or participate in any activities. I did hire a companion for her who visits once a week (though she goes much more often) and they go out for lunch, shopping, etc. This will have to cease soon because there arenÂt the funds to continue! My mom will be very angry about this Â. But I refuse to pay for any of her care out of my own funds. You probably donÂt recall, but she and I have never been close  as she spent my entire life drinking and being an abusive wife and mother. SheÂs lucky I acknowledge her  let alone spend hours each week caring for her affairs (including all the responsibilities of caring for her home  that will need to be sold ASAP). I regard my Guardianship as a second job (and it easily accounts for one with the amount of time I work at it). I try to employ the same standards I do for my primary job in ethics and quality of work. I give it my best  but not my all. I wish I could visit my mom more  mostly because I know it would improve the attention she gets in the ALF. But I have set boundaries and know that I cannot contribute any more time or energy now.

What a ride.

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I understand the feelings that you have trying to do the best for someone whose company you don't especially enjoy. About all you can do is just what you feel comfortable with and forget the rest.

Here's one way of doing it. A little tricky, but it can be done. Sell her house. Then she lends that amount of money to you at a certain rate of interest. Put the money in CDs. The amount of money that the CD earns should about offset the amount of interest that you will owe on the "loan". This interest then goes to help pay her bills. Have it set up so that when she dies, the loan is forgiven and you get all the money in the CD.

We did this for my aunt when she had to go into a NH and her pension and SS money was not enough. I, as her agent, lent her money to the family business paying "her" a monthly interest payment which was paid to the NH. When it was all over, the principle of the note was intact and was distributed according to the terms of her will.

Just a thought as to a possible solution for you.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 5:58PM
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You're doing that second job responsibly & diligently, & that's an outstanding achievement indeed, given the situation.

My mother was an abuser, too, & when she began to fail, my brother, the favorite, & his wife handled things.

thank goodness.

It's a brave & responsible thing that you're doing, & it shows backbone & character.

Look after yourself.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2008 at 10:58AM
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