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Archive for June, 2016

Talked to the lawyer + other things

June 22nd, 2016 at 07:01 pm

N talked to granny's lawyer on Monday. Luckily, N and the lawyer are completely on the same page. Granny can't kick MIL out unless and until she has in-home care. The lawyer has a lot of elderly clients so he has some referral for in-home caregivers. N has decided (and I agree) that Granny should start with in home care and then assess whether to push moving to an independent living situation. It might be easier with someone else (the caregiver) recommending that she go across the street (literally).

N is going down to take her out to lunch tomorrow and explain that there needs to be in home care and also that she has to be in his corner while he is in hers. He doesn't want to sit down with MIL to tell her she needs to find other arrangements only to have Granny equivocate or tell MIL she can stay. N will help no longer if that is the case. He is also going to tell granny that the lawyer recommends, and he agrees, that if she wants to keep a relationship with her daughter (MIL), then she's going to have to pay MIL some kind of living allowance so that she can support herself. It's stupid but that is the price you pay for bailing out your kid every time they get in trouble and not making it so they have to figure out how to live on their own and not off of someone.

If MIL doesn't agree, on advice of N's dad (who has been divorced from MIL for many, many years) is first going to beg MIL in order to stroke her ego and then if that doesn't work he is going to tell her the hard truth: no one in the family will want to have any kind of relationship with you if you keep this up because it is clear you are using an elderly couple only for their money and that is disgusting. But he doesn't think it will get that far.

N asked the lawyer what kind of legal rights MIL has and she has very few. Even if she tried to claim that Granny and Uncle-Grandpa are incompetent and that she needs to make their decisions, she'd have to hire her own lawyer (which she doesn't have the money for) and that no judge would agree-even UG who has short term memory problems is deemed competent to make his own decisions under the law.

Hopefully this will get Granny and UG the care they need, eliminate a lot of stress in their lives, and keep MIL off of SIL's doorstep. It has been a stressful week, and there is still a bit more to come but at least there is a path to a solution.

Granny Update

June 20th, 2016 at 01:07 pm

We've been dealing with some issues with Granny that at minimum have been frustrating. I will try not to write a novel about this but a lot has happened in the past couple days.

We planned on visiting Granny, Uncle-Grandpa and MIL the weekend before last, for Granny's birthday. Due to poor planning on our part (we had to flip the airbnb space on Sunday morning) and MIL dental problems we postponed to this past weekend. Friday morning N gets a call from a very upset granny telling him that her lawyer will be calling him and MIL needs to leave the house and that she wants N to be the one to tell MIL to get out.

According to granny MIL has been aggressive and increasingly mean and it came to a head when MIL got up into granny's face which caused uncle-grandpa to try to intervene and got him very upset. Uncle-grandpa is dying; he only has 10% function of his heart and just moving from a chair to the wheelchair wipes him out. He does not need this added stress.

Knowing what we know about MIL and granny, we know that there is a lot of truth to what granny was saying, but N wanted to take the weekend to observe before confronting MIL or making any changes.

After this weekend it is clear that at minimum there is neglect. MIL is being paid $2500+ a month from Uncle-Grandpa's insurance to be his caregiver. She put on a good show for us and every time her alarm rang she made a big fuss to me about how regimented her life is and how she never has any time for herself because she is always taking care of something, but there was a lot of talk and not so much action. She does make sure UG takes his medicine and gets his breathing treatment, so she is doing the minimum.

But he has a lot of short term memory loss. That's just the way it is. And she makes fun of him and talks to him like he's stupid, and that is so unnecessary. I know it is easy for us who don't live with him to answer the same question a lot, but this is how she is treating him when there is someone else around. I can't imagine how bad it could get when it's just the three of them.

There is no food in the house. Scratch that-there are 7 different kinds of cookies, a cake, several bags of different chips and several boxes of crackers, frozen pot pies and cheap cheap cheap frozen pizzas. Food Granny and UG have never eaten in their life and food that really shouldn't be given to people with heart problems. MIL kept complaining about how she can never find time to grocery shop and N stated several times "we're here now, do you want to go and get some grocery shopping done." and she got upset with him. "I don't want to waste your visit!"

The state of the house is filthy. MIL lets her dogs pee in the house and doesn't clean it up. N woke up and there was a puddle of pee on the floor outside our bedroom. Granny didn't notice it and was walking through it and dragging her walker through it. MIL said just to leave a paper towel on it and got upset when N cleaned it up.

MIL is not a trained caregiver. She just isn't. She may mean well but this is not the right job for it. The problem is is that she has never earned her own living and saw an opportunity and moved into Granny's house to "care" for her. MIL literally has no where to go once Granny kicks her out. So N needs to come up with a kind of solution for that so MIL doesn't end up with SIL.

However, Granny does not accept that she and UC need a caregiver. Great, MIL leaves, then what? Granny gave up driving 11 years ago. How will they get grocerys? What happens if Granny falls, who will be there to help? UG absolutely can't help. Granny is doing a reasonable good job taking care of herself, but she is 91 and TIRED. The few minutes N had alone with Granny he tried to bring this up and that she needs someone in the house to care for her but she said "we don't have that kind of thing around here. Maybe in the big city but not here."

Okay, that is just absolutely not true. The literally live across the street from an assisted/independent living community. I mean, you walk down their driveway, cross the street and BOOM there the community is. They live in the country but we found 5 different places that offer in home care. Granny gave us permission to find her "options" but she doesn't want someone in her house and she refuses independent/assisted living.

N is going to talk to the lawyer today but we don't know how fruitful it will be or how much he can discuss with N. N is going to implore him to wait to send a letter requesting MIL leave (that is the plan-ugh) until other care for Granny and UG is in place. That is when it will become clear to MIL that her services are no longer needed and hopefully police won't have to become involved and some of the relationship can be salvaged.

We're afraid if their care isn't in place first then MIL will just take off and then how will granny and UG eat? All it will take is one accident-UG falling, or granny falling, before social services is called and they will decide what "home" to put them it. We're going to try to frame it to Granny that she should be the one to make the choice and hopefully she'll go to the place across the street (assuming it is a good place. We haven't looked there yet.) We know the place that social services will chose is awful because UG was there for many weeks last fall and it was depressing and cheap.

I am not a decision maker here but I am trying to offer N as much support as possible and offer different perspectives so that he can make the most informed decisions. He's been in contact with his sister but I don't have much confidence she'll be of too much help-only because she brings so much emotion into it and might not be able to stand up to granny or MIL for what's best in the long run.