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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.

6 Responses to “Granny Update”

  1. ceejay74 Says:

    Wow, that sounds like an impossible and heart wrenching situation! Hoping for an ok outcome for everyone involved. ((hugs))

  2. snafu Says:

    You have described a serious situation that needs immediate action to avoid even more serious outcomes. My initial reaction was to suggest presenting the facts to granny with worse case scenario explained because once social services step into the picture, her wishes and her money will disappear at an alarming rate. If MIL is to remain, she needs the riot act read. Who has Power of Attorney for gran and UGP? Is there an Advanced Care Directive in place for both gran and UG? N can't act without legal authority.

    If N holds emotional responsibility, there are added duties no matter how difficult needed to manage that household. Tasks and daily routine to complete those tasks need to be written and monitored [verbally]. These will be needed for MIL or any hired care provider. It needs immediate attention or the two seniors will be in social service provided care. For a fee, groceries can be ordered and delivered, doesn't even need to be local. I'd consult a nutritionist to create a simple, basic, rotating, monthly, menu to focus on GPU's medical issues and senior's bone density requirements for example. I don't think this is a good place for MIL's pet. If she can't/won't put pet out for body functions, that is cruel and dangerous for everyone's health!

  3. CB in the City Says:

    Is MIL Granny's daughter? Her behavior doesn't sound like a daughter, but I know there are all kinds of daughters. Is MIL your husband's mother? I am seeing some difficult emotional issues to get through in order to untangle this mess.

    Well, clearly, MIL shouldn't be a caretaker. She has to keep up some standards of care, not just take the money. She shouldn't have untrained dogs around sick and elderly people. These are obvious things.

    I sympathize with Granny's wish to handle things on her own. She must be afraid to trust anyone, considering what she's going through now. I hope you can find good care for her and her husband, whether it is someone dropping in, someone living in, or relocation to a facility. My heart goes out to you and N.

  4. Carol Says:

    Sending hugs for you and N at such a hard time .

  5. SecretarySaving Says:

    Life Alert has the necklaces that they can wear that call for help if they need it. You could also call Meals on Wheels to have food delivered. I'd probably have the house deep cleaned, carpets cleaned and check with Home Health companies or a senior sitter service to see how much they'd charge. I'm sorry you all are going through this. It sounds like tentions are high.

  6. creditcardfree Says:

    ((Hugs)) They definitely need improved help!

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