Anybody from NC have experience with "Home Instead"?

bevangel_i_h8_h0uzzNovember 9, 2013

My 84 y.o. father and 90 y.o. stepmother live in N.C.

Dad is mentally alert but has ideopathic pulmonary fibrosis so he needs supplemental oxygen in order to breathe. He also has type 2 diabetes which is fairly well controlled by diet. Worst of all, he is currently in the hospital recuperating from emergency surgery that was done one week ago for a bowel obstruction. In fact, I'm writing this from his hospital room. Doctor is saying he will probably be able to go home on Tuesday or Wednesday.

My Stepmother is in fine shape physically but she has dementia to the point where she basically must be supervised like a 5 year old child to keep her from burning the house down or otherwise hurting herself. Thus, despite his physical ailments, Dad has been her caretaker for several years now.

I live in Texas so while I knew she was declining, I wasn't really aware just how bad things had gotten until this week. I flew in on Saturday and have spent the past week staying at their home and trying to look after stepmother as well as running back and forth to the hospital to visit Dad. I'm 25 years younger than Dad and in good health but after less than a week, I'm utterly exhausted! Among other things, stepmother constantly picks things up and puts them away and then has absolutely no recollection of having moved the you have to hide anything and everything that is at all important to you or spend hours looking for it.

Obviously Dad is going to need nursing care for a few weeks while he recuperates from his surgery. That's problem #1 but I think I've got a handle on that. Problem #2 - which is what is really giving me fits - is that Dad really needs long-term "caregiver help."

I know that there is no way he will ever agree to move her into a nursing home or away from her house
in NC... and I cannot move to NC to look after them. So I need to find someone I can hire to come to their home and relieve him of at least some of the caregiver duties.

I found the website below about a service in North Carolina called "Home Instead Senior Care" that sounds like it might be the kind of thing I'm looking for. Being a long-time GW member (I usually post on the homebuilding forum) I figured I should post here and find out if anyone has any first-hand experience with this company? Would love to hear from you re what you liked and don't like about their services. Also some idea about what they charge would be helpful.

Alternatively, if anyone has hired a caregiver assistant independently to do similar chores rather than going thru a company like "Home Instead," what can you tell me about handling things like Social security, taxes, worker's comp insurance, etc? Did you check references? Insist that the person be bonded?

I need to make some decisions fast and I've come to rely on the GW forum members for good advice so...

Thanks in advance for any and all insight.

Here is a link that might be useful: Home Instead Senior Care

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CA Kate

I don't know about the company mentioned, but we do have Caretakers almost 24/7. Some things you need to know:

1. Caretakers, from a company or private, need daily supervision to make sure they are actually doing their jobs on a daily basis, not stealing things, and not coercing the elderly to give them things, or abusing them. Many caretakers don't like this, but guess why. So, this is all going to be quite difficult to monitor from Texas.

2. Companies take care of pay, Social Security, taxes, etc. If you go with private people get a good CPA to take care of this for you. However, most 'private' caretakers really don't want this; they want to be paid " under- the-table" so to speak and not pay taxes, etc. Doing this can be dangerous however, and has been documented several times in the news.

3. You may need to have a serious talk with your Dad about moving to Texas, because even nursing homes need to be monitored on a regular basis... the watched watch, the rest don't.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2013 at 5:50PM
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Check with the hospital's social person Do they belong to any church? Chaplin at the hospital might help. Contact the Alzteimers's Associaton for help. They have trained people for that (anyway in ND they do). Is there a council on aging for seniors? Other that that, be very honest with Dad and have a conference with his medical staff/dr etc look at something closer to where you live. Does your stepmother have a dr? Talk to them and tell them your concerns.
Hope that helps

Is there other siblings on either side that could help?

This post was edited by marie-ndcal on Sun, Nov 10, 13 at 16:51

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 4:50PM
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thank you for replies. Sorry not to have responded but haven't had 10 minutes to myself since getting Dad home from hospital day before yesterday. Sleep has been in half hour spruts. Somthing has to give.

I understand about daily supervision of caretakers. I can't do itfrom Tx. Have a stepbrother in the area that I thought would do that but, since getting Dad home from hospital, he has disappeared into his own in, I asked him to come get his mom and take her out of the house for a few hours so I could 1) get an uniterrupted nap and 2) replace a door knob on one small generally unused bedroom with a key lock door knob so Dad would have SOMEWHERE that he could put things and know that she wouldn't be picking them up and moving them and losing them. Stepbrother stopped by, spent about 20 minutes, and took off again without even suggesting to her that she go with him.

Stepmother wonders around the house all day pickingthings up and squirreling them away...and of course 2 minutes later she doesn't remember having ever touched whatever it was that is now lost. Since arriving here,I've had to spend hours practically everyday looking for something. Found my purse in her closet, my shoes in her bathtub, my car keys side a bowl in the cupboard, Dad's diabetes test hidden under a stack of towel's in the linen closet, and my jacket in the washing machine being washed! Fortunately I brought a second coat with me.

She needs to be watched every single minute that she is awake. Right now she is trying to fry a piece off frozen chicken breast. I'm watching her thru the kitchen door and shoudl probably go divert her...which will result in her pouting. So I decided to just let her do it. I'll step in if she sets something on fire or tries to eat a piece of half-raw chicken. Hopefully she won't gett too badly burned by the spattering grease.
And I know I'm goonna have to clean up the kitchen when she loses interest and wonders away. Sigh.

Dad is finally sleeping after wakign up about 8 times during the night with wet Depends or needing to go pee RIGHT NOW. He hasn't yet regained bladder control. He still has to have help getting up out of bed and then help getting back into bed although, thankfully, he was able to change his own Depends once he was on his feet.

Social services nurse stopped by today to check on him. Basically, under medicare guidelines, he can have a home health nurse stop by three times a week to help him with bathing and LIGHT cooking and house keeping. He doesn't need help bathing and when I asked what was meant by "light cooking" - it means they'll make things like sandwiches. Dad is on a very low sodium diet AND, until his bowel surgery heals, he is supposed to be on a liquid diet. Clear liquids only for a week and then "full liquids for the second week" and "low residue for at least 2 weeks after that."

Between his low Na requirement, diabetes, and current requirement for liquid diet, the only way he can get sufficient nutrients is Glycerna plus homemade soups made by boiling down fresh veggies into a broth and then straining out the remaining solids. That isn't something that can be done quickly. I've looked nd thelowest sodium soups on the market contain about 5X the amount of Na in a single serving than he is supposed to eat ALL day. So I'm cooking soups in between everythign else... and trying to keep stepmother from throwing them out just about the time I get done.

Sorry to vent. I'm at wits end already. How does anybody do this??

    Bookmark   November 14, 2013 at 6:15PM
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CA Kate

Caretakers 24/7. You need help on-hand to watch your stepmom... if for no other reason. It sounds like she needs to be in a Alzheimers unit in a really good care facility.

You need sleep, so get help NOW... even if it's only over night. BTDT

    Bookmark   November 14, 2013 at 7:07PM
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googled "caretakers 24/7" and found a company in Ohio and indiana... not in N.C. Anyone know of a similar company in NCarolina?

    Bookmark   November 14, 2013 at 7:30PM
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You need to place both of them in nursing homes for their own safety. Am aware that it is not the solution you would want but until your father heals he needs 24 hour care and you need some sleep.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2013 at 9:00PM
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CA Kate

Surely the local town/city or county has an organization that has info for Seniors, Elderly, and Disabled. They will have info on the various Caretaker companies in your area..... and possibly even a rating for them. Check under In-home Caretakers.

I was lucky in that I knew a number of people who had used caretakers and chose the one that was recommended the most. Whatever happened to the Home Instead?

    Bookmark   November 15, 2013 at 12:57PM
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I have used Home Instead in NC with great satisfaction. It was 18.50 per hour .... This company is all over the states and from what I have read and heard, they are reputable and as said, my experience with them was great

Good luck

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 6:22AM
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Turns out "Home Instead" does not cover the area where my Dad and Stepmother live. Their website lists our town and county but their nearest office is about 35 miles away in then next county over. When I called them, they said they don't cover this county. Back to square one.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2013 at 10:41AM
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Just a follow up to let those of you who responded to my original posting know that Dad has decided that assisted living is the best option for him and my stepmother. We've located a facility about 35 miles from where they are now living so it'll be close enough that my stepbrother can easily check on his mom and take her to church or out for outings on a regular basis.

I can't say that I'm totally thrilled with the idea of them moving into assisted living because my husband and I had an absolutely HORRIBLE experience with assisted living for his mother when she was in the early stages of alzheimers. I had forgotten that I posted that sorry saga here on gardenweb more than four years ago. See the link below if curious.

The facility where Dad and stepmother will be moving is called Emeritus an the Pines of Goldsboro and it is one of the highest ranked AL facilities in the state of North Carolina. If anyone has 1st hand experience with them, I'd love to hear about it. (I know Emeritus has gotten some really bad press recently but also know that every facility is only as good, or as bad, as it's I'm hoping for the best. Plus, since Dad is in full command of his mental facilities and I'm in daily contact with him by telephone, if Emeritus does not live up to expectations, I'm sure Dad will let me know toot sweet!

Dad and stepmother will have a 2 bedroom apartment with the smaller bedroom turned into a lockable office where Dad can keep his computer and other things that need to NOT get misplaced. Hopefully, not having to worry about cooking, grocery shopping, running a household, or having to keep stepmother from wandering out into the street or setting the place on fire will reduce some of the load Dad has been carrying and will allow him to recuperate to the maximum extent.

I'm also hoping that Dad will also benefit from having other seniors around who are still in full control of their mental facilities. He could definitely use some new friends.

Thanks for caring and please say few prayers that all works out for the best.

Here is a link that might be useful: posting about previous bad experience with AL

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 8:26PM
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Bev, my mom was in an Emeritus assisted living facility in Sacramento the last two years of her life. One year is the assisted living section and then moved to memory care. I have only good things to say about the experience, especially the time spent in memory care. The caregivers were wonderful -- warm, funny, & friendly. The administrative staff was understanding and helpful.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 10:28PM
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My 90 year-old dad has been in the nursing care/physical therapy section of Emeritus here in Carlsbad, California. I did much research and they were my first choice.

He fell (numerous times before that) because he doesn't want to use his rollator and mistakenly thinks he is getting more steady on his feet. My dad had surgery for a broken leg and after two days was sent to Emeritus for recovery.

The staff doctor, nurses, aids and physical therapists have been so warm, friendly and helpful to all. My dad wants to come home but is really pleased with how everyone interacts. The facility has a lot of activities offered as well as entertainment. The monthly program is listed near the nurse's station and in each room. The menu for each meal is posted as well.

It is a lovely setting with a library, two dining rooms, a hair salon/barber shop, housecleaning/laundry available, centralized mailboxes for residents and small pets are allowed. I have nothing but wonderful things to say about them. Today my dad asked me how much it cost to have a studio apartment there and I told him it was $2600/month. That includes all meals, laundry/housekeeping, weekly shopping trips, activities, driving to doctor appointments and more. I love the idea that someone could stay at Emeritus through all levels of personal need.


    Bookmark   December 2, 2013 at 12:16AM
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Dad and stepmother wound up NOT moving into the Assisted Living facility after all. Instead, I brought Dad home to Texas with me and left stepmother in NC in her son's care. The reason?

Well, at the last minute.... literally, less than an hour before we were supposed to be at the facility to start moving my Dad and Stepmother into the Goldsboro Emeritus Assisted Living , my stepbrother balked at the idea. (Stepbrother holds her health care and legal powers of attorney so, once he said "no" to the idea, there was nothing Dad or I could do about it.)

Stepbrother SAID that the reasons he didn't want her going into assisted living were 1)she might not adjust to not being in her own home and 2) she would have to have a different primary care doctor because Emeritus requires that all their residents have a doctor within 10 miles of the facility. Balderdash - I think stepbrother is rationalizing a decision that he made purely because he's interested in making sure his inheritance doesn't get spent!

While stepmother would have had to get a doctor of record within 10 miles of the assisted living facility in case of emergencies, there is no reason at all that she could not have continued to see her regular doctor in her home town for regular check ups. All that stepbrother would have had to do was come get her and take her to the appointments. It is only a 35 mile drive.

And, as far as her not settling into AL and "wanting to go home," half the time stepmother no longer recognizes her own home even when she is sitting in her own living room surrounded by furnishings she has owned for 40 years and pictures of her children and grandchildren! At least two years ago, I was talking to my Dad on the phone when I heard her say something in the background and Dad interrupted our conversation to answer her with "Honey, we ARE at home...this is our home...look, here on the wall are pictures of your sons and here are your grandchildren and there are the baskets and quilts you made and here is our wedding picture." The same sort of thing happened at least a couple of times every single day during the month I spent with her. No matter where stepmother is, she is going to start asking to "go home." That is the nature of her disease.

The real reason stepbrother balked was because he didn't want to spend that much of her monthly income on her care! Dad and Stepmother each have slightly over $3K in monthly INCOME from retirement and social security. AL would have cost for the two of them would have been $5.5 by splitting the cost, neither one would have had to touch their savings. At least not until their "level of care" requirements went up. But it WOULD have taken the lion's share of their incomes so neither one would have continued to accumulate assets. And eventually, yes, they probably would have begun spending down their principals. But neither one is likely at this point to live more than another 10 years of so and each of their accumulated savings would have carried them that far.

We had a 2 o'clock appointment to get them moved in. At noon, Stepbrother stopped by the house where I was packing up clothing for them and fixing them lunch. He asked Dad how HE planned to pay for Assisted Living. When Dad said that their combined incomes would cover the cost and still leave them with some spending money each month, Stepbrother replied that he didn't think that was fair and then said: "You've been living rent-free in Momma's house all these years and NOW you want her to subsidize YOUR medical care needs!!!"

I asked stepbrother what he thought was fair and he said he thought Dad should foot the entire bill for the two of them because it was Dad's recent surgery that was the cause for the move! He also seemed to think that it would have been fine to hire someone under the table at $8/hr to come in for a couple of hours each day to fix a meal and "help out:" until Dad healed from his surgery and then, "things could go back to the way they have been." In other words, Dad could keep providing 24/7 care and wearing himself to a frazzle in order to save Mary's money for sons to inherit!!!

Stepbrother claimed that I had been "dumping on his mother" ever since I'd been in NC and had shown no appreciation for all the time HE (stepbrother) had stepped in to help when Dad would get sick and need to go to the doctor. Basically, he appears to be in total denial that his mother now needs 24/7 care and that, at 83, even if Dad were perfectly healthy, the job is simply too much for him. Stepbrother has apparently never observed that, when the telephone rings, she is as likely to try to answer using the TV remote as to pick up the phone. He has apparently never gone thru the drawers and found half-eaten hamburgers wrapped in paper towels. He's never spent two hours trying to find his car keys after she grabbed them and moved them when his back was turned...and then, five minutes later had absolutely no recollection of having ever touched them. He has apparently never walked with her around the pond in her back yard...that has been there 60 years...and heard her say "this sure is a pretty resort, how long are we staying here?" He has not tried to go grocery shopping with her or he would realize that there is no way an 83 year old man with pulmonary fibrosis and congestive heart failure can possible grocery shop AND keep her from wondering off at the same time. He has not watched her try to cook a meal and forget what she is doing right in the middle of cooking. He has not watched her make coffee and pour both the ground coffee and the water into the back of the coffee maker. He has not had to stop her from putting food wrapped in tin foil into the microwave. He has not been awakened night after night by her wandering thru the house at 2 AM turning on lights in all the rooms and wondering agitatedly why her "boys" are not home yet. He has not set up with her till dawn patiently explaining that her boys are grown and married and living in their own homes with their own wives. And when I told him about observing these behaviors, stepbrother apparently thinks I'm exaggerating them all and that, if need be, his mother could live just fine by herself!

I suspect that many of Dad's physical health issues are caused (or at least have been exacerbated) by the fact that he has been wearing himself out trying to provide 24/7 care to someone with stage 5 to stage 6 alzheimers! 5 know for a fact that I lost 15 pounds during the one month that I was in NC and developed a hacking cough that I'm still getting over!

Besides that, Dad and Stepmother's agreement before they got married was that they would always split their living costs equally and that, when one of them died, whatever that one had brought into the marriage and/or saved during the marriage would go to that one's children. Each of them owned a house and, yes, she has paid the cost of the electricity, water, and utilities, taxes and insurance at her house...but Dad has paid those same costs for his house. And yes, they have stayed at her house most of the time since they married... but their original agreement was that they would live half the time at her house and half at his. The reason they wound up staying at her house 99.9% of the time was because fairly early on, Stepmother always wanted to "go home" whenever they tried to stay at Dad's lake house and he gave into her.

Dad's house is much nicer and is NOT filled with the detritus of 50 years of pack-rat behavior! But Dad gave up on going there except for stopping in now and then for an hour or two to make sure all was well. He kept his lake house though because, if stepmother passed away first, he wanted to have a home of his own to move into so that her kids could have possession of her house immediately. Furthermore, since he and stepmother weren't using the lake house, he made it available for free to stepbrother and stepbrother's grown son to use for vacations whenever they wanted. None of Dad's children live close enough to take advantage of the lake house so stepbrother and his family got far more use out of it than anyone else! Stepbrother ignored all that!

Up to the point that stepbrother suggested Dad had "lived off" stepmother, I had not paid any attention to how my Dad spent his money. It was his to spend and if he spent every penny before he died, that was his choice. But I KNOW my Dad and I knew that there was no way he was "living off" his wife.

Since stepbrother made his accusation, I've found some of his mother's bank records that got stuck in with my Dad's things and I've been able to compare how Stepmother's assets have grown as compared to Dad's assets since they've been married, Other then their real property, both of them kept their money in savings accounts at the same credit union rather than investing it. So they were earning the same interest rate and had almost exactly the same amount of money coming in from outside sources. IF they had been splitting expenses evenly, their savings should have grown by about the same amount.

But, from the records, it is evident that Dad has been paying the lion's share of their combined living expenses over the entire eight years they've been married! In eight years, her saving's account has grown from $15K to nearly $200Kwhile Dad's savings have gone from about $190K to $215K. In other words, she has saved over $180K out of $36K/year income while he has saved $25K! Who has been "living off" of whom?

Before they married, she was apparently giving money away to every ne'er-do-well relative that came begging. Dad insisted that stepbrother take over handling her money shortly after two of them got married when it became evident to him that she could no longer handle her finances. Dad did not want there to EVER be any question that he had taken advantage of her! And Dad admits that he has paid for all of their food, travel, gasoline, automobile repair, medical copay's, clothing, and other daily living expense since getting stepbrother to take over her finances because he did not want to ask stepbrother for money. Yet my stepbrother still had the gall to accuse him of that very thing! You can imagine how LIVID I am!

When stepbrother decided that he would not sign off on her moving into AL with him, I told my Dad that I didn't see any viable option except for him to come home with me to Texas and I was actually surprised when Dad not only agreed but didn't even argue.

So, in about 2 hours time, I finished packing up all of Dad's stuff that was as her house, put it all into his van and the two of us went to his lake house and spent the night there. Then we headed for Texas the next day.

That was three weeks ago. Dad is resting and recuperating. Today he and my husband and I are celebrating a quiet Christmas together. Next week my youngest brother is coming and bringing the two grandbabies to see their grandpa. My brothers and I are ecstatic to have Dad safely home where I can keep an eye on him and he can spend quality time with us. Even when he and stepmother came to visit - or one of us would go visit them - we could never really have much of a conversation because Dad's attention was always focused on what Stepmother needed. So, stepbrother actually did me a huge favor by balking on letting his mother move into Assisted Living.

The only downside is that we have no way now of KNOWING if stepbrother is actually providing someone to look after his mother 24/7 as she needs or is leaving her in her home alone for hours at a time. I hope and pray that he is providing proper care and supervision because it would be absolutely horrible if she hurt herself trying to cook a meal or wandered off and got lost in the middle of the night because of his negligence. If he is providing proper care, I suspect that he is quickly going to find that it is costing him far more to pay someone on an hourly basis - even doing so "under the table" and at less than minimum wage, than her half of assisted living would have cost.

Maybe stepbrother will come to his senses but if not, no matter how healthy my Dad manages to get, there is no way I'm going to allow him to step back into 24/7 care-giving duties...even if I have to have Dad declared incompetent!

Thanks for listening. And please pray for all of us.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2013 at 3:15PM
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(( Hugs )) Make sure that your Dad's affairs are all in order, cause if you're getting flack now just wait until one of them passes on.. It won't be a picnic in the park to say the least & make sure that everything said is in writing cause ya never know..

    Bookmark   December 25, 2013 at 6:28PM
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CA Kate

I am soooooo very glad to hear that you, at the least, have your Dad with you. I know how incredibly wearing it is to care for someone disabled.... and I have help! I felt so sorry for your Dad needing to do that all alone.

You step-brothers attitude is one that is not uncommon. And, ogoopogo is wise to advise you to consult an attorney and get your Dad's affairs in legal order. He may need to get a legal Separation Order as well.

(Here I'm going to step into none-of-my-business territory:) when your stepbrother decides to send his Mom to you - to be with Dad --- say 'no'...... please! Also, do you dare call that old County's Elder Care (Abuse) Hotline and question her care under her son? I'd be willing to bet it's none to good by now.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2013 at 5:43PM
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I am so sorry for the awful last-minute decision that was made. In all fairness, you don't have to use the doctors on staff at Emeritus. It is easier for a lot of residents because the doctor comes to see them there. The 10-mile rule is for when their van takes the patient to any medical appointments at no additional charge. I thought it was pretty neat that they would do that and have me just meet at the doctor's location. My dad's doctors (of all sorts) are less than 10 miles away but I don't mind taking him to them.

I did pick up my dad to attend my church's Christmas Eve service, go out to dinner and then go to his churc's service. I had him back by around 9pm and got no flack from any outings. I returned Christmas morning at 9am to bring him home because many family members were coming over. I will tell you that just arriving early, getting him ready, into my car via wheelchair and then putting that thing in the back (had to put down the back seat to accommodate it) getting him out, up the ramp, into the house and situated was tiring. Then I had a meal to make (with help) but just handling things throughout the day was tiring. Then I had to take him back to Emeritus and that took an extra half our after arriving to get him settled down for the night. I was dead tired that I was in slow motion all of yesterday.

It means a lot that he is temporarily in Emeritus. I know that once he is released to come back home and continue the physical and occupational therapy plus nurses visits I will never be going anywhere without him or needing to get a caregiver for me to do the littlest thing leaving the house. My daughter is due with baby #2 in about a week and I won't have the freedom to go and help her during labor (she requested that I be there) and a few days after the birth. I won't know when she will go into active labor and it is notoriously hard to get last moment caregivers.

I feel badly that your dad and stepmom have to be separated. Even if she isn't aware I know that he is and will be sad about it. How unsettling for the both of them to be torn apart at this late stage of life.

I do think you are in for a problem with your stepbrother. I know I am with my sister as she is used to running things in his life even though I have been caring for him full-time for three years. Last year my dad met with his trust lawyer and had the medical power of attorney and general durable power of attorney (financials) given over to me. She had made sure she was all of it previously even though she only sees him every 6 weeks for a few hours and calls him every 2-3 weeks. She is more than happy to let me handle the day-to-day. She wants me to spend all his money to hire the $20/25 per hour caregiver and has never once offered to come and stay with him even though she only lives 45 minutes away. He has been at Emeritus nearly 7 weeks and she has come twice. I go every day because he seems to like the continuity. I have had his newspaper delivered there and I bring him the fun parts of his mail.

I hope that something can be worked out in the future because dealing with dementia (my dad's is early stage) is hard work and you must always be on your toes. You are a sweetie to take your dad with you and I am so sorry that it has come to this. I think that Emeritus is a wonderful deal overall considering the activities and safety net provided.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2013 at 9:17PM
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Thank you all for your advice and expressions of support!

Believe me, there is no way that I will EVER agree to having stepmother come here to Texas to live...and having refused to agree to let her move 35 miles away, I don't think stepbrother would have the balls to suggest that she ought to move 1400 miles away! Even HE would have to see how utterly illogical such a suggestion would be.

I agree that is sad that Dad and she were "torn apart" and I would never have done that if stepbrother had given us any other options. I know Dad is worried about whether she is being cared for properly but I don't sense any great deal of sadness in him over the loss of her companionship or anything like that.

I think, in the truest sense, Dad had already lost the woman he married a long time ago. In helping him get his computer set back up at our home, I wound up with access to his email and learned that he had begun email conversations with "A Place for Mom" well over a year ago in an attempt to locate an alternative situation for the two of them. So even that far back, he had already realized that their situation really wasn't viable any longer. I'm just sorry he never asked me for help earlier instead of continuing to try to go it alone for so long. As for Dad feeling any sorrow over leaving her behind, I think he had already done his grieving over "losing her" and about the only thing he is able to feel now is relief over having the burden of her continued care lifted from him...and possibly a small amount of totally uncalled for guilt over feeling such relief. I and Dad's new doctor are doing our best to help him realize that he should not feel any guilt, that he did all that he could possibly do - and more than he should have been called on to do - and that the situation was taken out of his hands.

I am well aware of the potential for legal trouble from my stepbrother. And Dad is still furious at the accusations my stepbrother made! We're doing everything we can to forestall any future issues with stepbrother making any sort of financial claims on his mother's behalf. It would be different if my stepmother were broke and needed Dad's financial support. But it seems fair to me - and to Dad - that HER assets (and HER children's potential inheritance) should be spent for HER care before another penny of my father's assets is touched for that purpose.

Frankly, while I too was furious at my stepbrother over his accusing my Dad of having "lived off" his mother, I have come to realize that he us a HUGE FAVOR by refusing to consent to his mother moving into assisted living with my Dad. Had he not done so, there is no way my Dad would be sleeping down the hall from me this evening and no way he would have gotten to spend today playing with his two pre-school age grandbabies. So while I'm leery about what my stepbrother may do in the future and concerned over whether he will or will not care properly for my poor demented stepmother, I'm not even angry with him anymore.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2013 at 2:15AM
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CA Kate

I've found that many times that which seemed awful at one time will eventually be seen as a blessing -- or at least a new path to a better life than one would have had.

It sounds to me me as if you're on top of the financial situation too. And, I just bet Grandpa LOVES being more a part of his grand babies' lives now.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2013 at 7:42PM
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