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Old 03-22-2015, 04:20 PM
 
39,257 posts, read 20,360,961 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theoldnorthstate View Post
OP, I think there is an obligation to care for parents when you are retired or not but the level of that care is up to you to decide and should be what you consider rational. And it can be done many many ways.
Actually there is no obligation to take care of parents if they become ill.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:22 PM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,482,868 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petch751 View Post
Actually there is no obligation to take care of parents if they become ill.
Potentially there can be if government funds are expended on their behalf.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
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The obligation on arranging care should fall on the one most likely to need the care, the parents. The parents should make the judgment about what they need, the extent of the help they need, and how to pay for it, provided they have the capacity to make these decisions. They shouldn't try to impede the child's life because of their own inability to pay or poor planning.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,975,704 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emigrations View Post
The obligation on arranging care should fall on the one most likely to need the care, the parents. The parents should make the judgment about what they need, the extent of the help they need, and how to pay for it, provided they have the capacity to make these decisions. They shouldn't try to impede the child's life because of their own inability to pay or poor planning.
There is a distinct line here between lovingly helping an elder, even going so far as to bring her into your own home and/or helping financially, and trying to aid a belligerent, noncooperative and angry elder who will not budge on the most common sense issues. I would take my MIL into our home, she is the kind of person you want to help, she cooperates and isn't demanding. My own mother, well, not.
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Old 03-22-2015, 05:30 PM
 
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I would never have lived with my mother (who died at 77 in 2005). I had little to do with her my whole adult life and she was demanding, nasty and likely rather crazy, too. My father moved back in with her and took care of her (sort of) in her final illness, although she likely belonged in a facility for hospice. When she went to a hospice finally, she was gone in three days. I would have ponied up the $20k needed for her to go to a nursing home before Medicaid would kick in, but he didn't want to "pull the trigger." (They were divorced. He said, "Your mother shouldn't end up in the gutter because she married a bum like me once.")

For myself, I am planning on a continuing-care retirement community when/if I decide that my current house and situation isn't suitable. They even have a packing/moving/real estate service.
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:34 PM
 
Location: Tucson for awhile longer
8,872 posts, read 13,552,358 times
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It's very easy for people who aren't members of a family to give advice. I've entered the 10th year of having my elderly, disabled mother living with me. Up to now her problems have been strictly physical, but now I see clear signs that we are entering into a stage that will have mental issues, too.

When I made this "choice," I didn't really feel like it was much of one ... my mother is one of the ones who overestimates her abilities and was stubbornly opposed to any plan that would assist her living arrangements after our dad died. She finally relented to family pressure to move in with me after her doctor said she could no longer manage alone in her inappropriate dwelling. (To here her tell it now, that never happened. I invited her to move in just because that's how generous I am and how much I love her.) But that was the only option she would even entertain. She wouldn't take help from "strangers," she wouldn't even "want to impose on 'the boys' because they have their own families to deal with." So caregiving during my retirement is my reward for being the only daughter and choosing not to have children, I guess.

Having her in my home would not have been my first choice, but allowing her to make a spectacle of herself and eventually have the government step in to force care on her didn't seem like an acceptable alternative either. My siblings swore they would help but, in fact, their assistance has been minimal.

Those of you who do not have a stubborn, willful elder for a parent have no idea how those of us who do live from day to day. Some of the statements made on caregivers threads such as "they will eventually relent" or "leave her alone and she will see the light" or even "don't give in to them" are easy for others to say. I feel for the OP's wife and her sister. They're damned if they do and damned if they don't.

Another thing to keep in mind is, even when plans are made with love, the best intentions, and professional advice, after a decade those plans don't always look the same. I made my commitment when I still had a job and the economy was stable. Things are very different now and I enter my own elder years in a very weakened financial state due to my responsibilities as a caregiver, a tanked economy, and the mortgage crisis.

OP, my advice to you is to follow through on family meetings with ALL the siblings AND a profession social worker knowledgeable about the laws of the state the parents live in. Make a decision as a family and stick to it. A written contract is a good idea. That was my mistake. I thought my siblings would follow through on what they promised, but they haven't. Your wife and her siblings didn't ask to be born to stubborn, willful people and different people react to that differently. You might have married your wife for better or worse, but you did not marry her parents. Go where you two want to go. Make a good faith effort to participate in the parents' care whether your contribution is time or money or both. PLEASE do not abandon the sibling who does end up with the biggest burden (which will be the one who is physically the closest and/or the biggest martyr). Help him or her because it's the right thing to do, not because you're relenting to the parents' unfair demands.

Even people who were sweet and kind in their normal adulthood can become fearful, demanding, and unreasonable in their old age, even if they don't have Alzheimer's. I am absolutely positive my mother, as I once knew her, would be appalled by some of her behavior today. Adult children should not have a responsibility to give up their life's plans to relent to the demands of people who may not even be in their right minds.

Make plans in goodwill, follow through on commitments you make, and be reasonably flexible. But do not mortgage your future to people who think you owe them. You have no idea how many years they might live. You have no idea how long you and your wife might live. Try to make a decision balancing the needs (real, not perceived) of all concerned. Social workers get this. My best advice is to use the services of one. Contact elder care services in your in-law's county to get a referral. Good luck.
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:46 PM
 
Location: Hampstead NC
5,587 posts, read 5,100,423 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanderer0101 View Post
I freely admit that these people need a certain level of help which is sometimes difficult because they have always been as independent as hogs on ice though they are more than willing to accept anything you give them and the mother-in-law in particular is very adept at throwing the guilt trip if she doesn't think she is getting her due, they just won't do one damn thing anyone tells them. So very rapidly commuting distance to their house so they can be assisted is becoming a governing factor on what we do. I am very concerned about my wife becoming the servant, or at least one of two servants because her sister is doing a commendable job in assisting but rapidly reaching the end of her rope. My wife is spending a couple weeks at a stretch with them now with increasing frequency. The Mother-in-Laws stated position is that she sees no reason to use home help (she runs off everyone we've tried) when her two daughters can come and live in and take care of anything than they need.
You are on a very slippery slope. YOUR MARRIAGE COMES FIRST!

Your wife is accepting the guilt trip. She should not be spending weeks at a time with them to enable their lifestyle. Who is enabling your lifestyle? No one!

Does your wife truly think that the concept of moving in with Mom to take care of her at this time is a realistic, fair or practical solution? Does she see that as something that 'normal' people do? My mom is crazy as a june bug but never once suggested that we LIVE with her.

In your shoes I would express concern for your wife and her inability to stand up for herself. If she can't see this as a problem for you both, some family counseling might be in order. Maybe a counselor could help her address whatever it is that makes her vulnerable to her Mother's unreasonable demands. Or at least help you negotiate an acceptable compromise.

Yes, it is your retirement, you earned the right to spend it how you want.
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Old 03-22-2015, 08:33 PM
 
511 posts, read 384,764 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanderer0101 View Post
This is the scenario; here I sit on the edge of retirement (days to months) and the plan has always been to relocate. However, concerns about care for the aged parents of my wife are starting to impinge on the plans. I freely admit that these people need a certain level of help which is sometimes difficult because they have always been as independent as hogs on ice though they are more than willing to accept anything you give them and the mother-in-law in particular is very adept at throwing the guilt trip if she doesn't think she is getting her due, they just won't do one damn thing anyone tells them. So very rapidly commuting distance to their house so they can be assisted is becoming a governing factor on what we do. I am very concerned about my wife becoming the servant, or at least one of two servants because her sister is doing a commendable job in assisting but rapidly reaching the end of her rope. My wife is spending a couple weeks at a stretch with them now with increasing frequency. The Mother-in-Laws stated position is that she sees no reason to use home help (she runs off everyone we've tried) when her two daughters can come and live in and take care of anything than they need. Their son lives across the country and shows up occasionally but is typically not a whole lot of help. I have been probably too ready to help them financially in the past when they were in a bind. Being support to the in-law parents has certainly not been my retirement vision. My marriage is decades old and a good one, never expected or received a whole lot from my wife's parents and I am entirely happy with that. To be honest, I'm really, really tempted to relocate far enough away from that commuting to help is a real pain in the backside and then become as obstructive as possible. I really hate the automatic assumption that we're going to do this just because that's what they want. Hope someone has a silver bullet solution but I realize there isn't one, this is more a rant than anything.
Yes the attitude would have me upset also.
They've never experienced needing someone's help and them not being there. Try it for a week. Let them alone. Don't answer the phone and tell sis to do the same thing. There is no reason they would agree to an assisted living until they experience a need to need assistance eh? just a thought. Good luck in whatever choice you make
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Old 03-22-2015, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,581 posts, read 17,567,761 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
There is a distinct line here between lovingly helping an elder, even going so far as to bring her into your own home and/or helping financially, and trying to aid a belligerent, noncooperative and angry elder who will not budge on the most common sense issues. I would take my MIL into our home, she is the kind of person you want to help, she cooperates and isn't demanding. My own mother, well, not.
True - it depends on how compliant the person is. Even if the person is grateful for the help, that doesn't make it the child's obligation to care for an indigent elder
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Old 03-22-2015, 08:46 PM
 
378 posts, read 227,084 times
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Shouldn't you love them, and not see them as an obligation?
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