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Remember my dying MIL and narcissistic SIL?


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#1 mykdsmomy

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:01 PM

Well....MIL took a turn for the worse last week and is basically in a coma. We were there almost all weekend long. Friday night she was still sort of communicating with us so we all said our goodbyes. It was actually very emotional. The grandkids all came in and said goodbye and gave her hugs and kisses.... It was sad but also a positive experience for them, I think.

Ok, well, where MIL left off, SIL is picking up :mad: She (Sil) has told me at least 10 times this past weekend that the reason she called us all on Friday to come and see MIL is because she knew once they started the Attivan, MIL would not be able to really communicate. She continued to tell EVERYONE over the weekend how SHE has been there the most and has taken care of MIL this whole time. Extended family was there on Sat and they were asking me questions about MIL's current medical state...but SIL would butt in and say "ask me, I'm the one who's been here". Ok, fine...we get it....you guys moved in (partially because they were getting kicked out of their own apt!) to help MIL because you think that regardless of what MIL has done to you, she's still family.....but that doesn't mean that we are evil for having a different view!!!!

Ok, so last night, dd and I went over to see mil (dh had been there in the morning) MIL now has a round the clock nurse that stays there. Dd and I walked into her room and SIL followed us in. I wanted to ask the nurse questions but I could tell SIL wanted to be the one to answer....grrrr
I then was counting MIL's respirations (sp?) and noticed she was at 8 per min. The night before she was at 12. I also noticed they had taken her nasal canula out (oxygen). I asked SIL how mil's respirations were and she said "oh they're fine" . She said they took her off the oxygen because she didn't need it. :glare: SIL kept telling me "oh, she can breathe...she was just anxious so she THOUGHT she couldn't breathe".....bullcr*p!

So now SIL is telling us that the nurses are saying to not go talk to MIL because it agitates her and then she gets upset and wants to try to get up. Ok, I understand this....however, family is EVERYTHING to my mil. She is literally on her death bed. It will be a few days if that as she's not on any IV and hasn't taken anything to drink or eat in several days.

My other SIL has sort of given up on the whole thing (she's just done with her mom). DH is like "don't rock the boat..it's almost over"....and SIL's husband (who is MIL's other son) goes along with SIL because it's his wife.

I have animosity towards my mil that I'm trying to let go but it almost seems like what SIL is doing right now is cruel. She is purposely keeping us away from MIL's bedside using the excuse that it agitates her :glare: maybe it does....but it shouldn't all be her call.

Ok, sorry for the long vent.....

Also, has anyone else experienced the dying process with a loved one? I think we're down to a matter of hours at this point (the nurses all have different opinions ranging from less than a week to up to 10 days). I don't think it will be that long at all. She's got so many of the symptoms of it being imminent. :(

#2 QuirkyKapers

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:07 PM

:grouphug:Yes. I thought my mom's breathing seemed calmer because it was slower. Really, it was just slowing down until she just stopped breathing altogether.

If you want to be in the room, I would. I would be tempted to ask the nurse who is in the room if it seemed like MIL seemed agitated to let you know and you would leave. Make sure whatever choice you make, to listen to SIL or not, that you are o.k. with maybe not being in there at the end.

Edited by QuirkyKapers, 20 August 2012 - 03:10 PM.


#3 Occasionally

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:10 PM

:grouphug: Wish I could help more than that.

When my dad was dying, I remember him trying to "pick" at his clothes and being told it meant he was almost at the end. His fingers also got bluer and his respirations slowed way down until we were on tenterhooks waiting to hear if there would be another one. I'm afraid I don't remember everything.

:grouphug: again.

#4 Night Elf

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:19 PM

I don't know if I like the idea that your SIL is dictating whether you go in to see your MIL or not. I can understand how it's possible that the visitors could agitate her but you don't have a medical opinion on that, only your SIL who you know is not looking at this like everyone else. Isn't there a doctor or a nurse nearby that you can speak with? If SIL butts in, just look her in the eye and say 'Excuse me but I'm talking.' I'm sure it isn't that easy but this situation won't last long and it's just too serious to let her call the shots.

#5 Denisemomof4

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:21 PM

I would speak to a hospital social worker, explain the situation, then ask to be allowed in the room without sil/bil so you could speak to her without agitating her. Your sil is probably the reason for her stress.

Now is the time to let all animosity go and just make mil comfortable and at peace.

My mother shocked all the Hospice nurses and she outlived all their predictions. She went 3 or 3.5 weeks without food, and her only hydration was when I swabbed the inside of her mouth.

#6 fairfarmhand

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:29 PM

:grouphug:Yes. I thought my mom's breathing seemed calmer because it was slower. Really, it was just slowing down until she just stopped breathing altogether.

If you want to be in the room, I would. I would be tempted to ask the nurse who is in the room if it seemed like MIL seemed agitated to let you know and you would leave. Make sure whatever choice you make, to listen to SIL or not, that you are o.k. with maybe not being in there at the end.

:iagree:

:grouphug: Wish I could help more than that.

When my dad was dying, I remember him trying to "pick" at his clothes and being told it meant he was almost at the end. His fingers also got bluer and his respirations slowed way down until we were on tenterhooks waiting to hear if there would be another one. I'm afraid I don't remember everything.

:grouphug: again.


If she's breathing 8 times per minute, she is right at the end. She may linger a bit, but really, I doubt she is conscious of very much at all, as far as having things agitate her or upset her. This is a hard thing. I might sit with her quietly, especially hold her hand. Whisper I love you's. Just let her know, quietly, that she is not alone.

:grouphug:

Just reading your post reminds me of 1.5 yrs ago when my mom passed. So sorry. It is a hard thing.

#7 momto8blessings

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:39 PM

8 breaths per minute sounds like she is getting close to the end.

I think people can live for 3 days without water.

When my dad passed away about a yr ago his heart rate started dropping and the nurses knew the end was close. He passed away about half an hour after his heart rate dropped.

Google "stages of dying"- it helped me a ton when my dad was passing.

#8 Harriet Vane

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 03:52 PM

:iagree:

I would speak to a hospital social worker, explain the situation, then ask to be allowed in the room without sil/bil so you could speak to her without agitating her. Your sil is probably the reason for her stress.

Now is the time to let all animosity go and just make mil comfortable and at peace.

My mother shocked all the Hospice nurses and she outlived all their predictions. She went 3 or 3.5 weeks without food, and her only hydration was when I swabbed the inside of her mouth.



#9 mykdsmomy

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 04:01 PM

Thank you all :grouphug: She's at home and Sil and Bil have moved in with her so they are sort of "in charge" of her care right now.

I'm going to speak directly to the nurse tonight even if SIL is in the room.

She is picking at her clothes. As a matter of fact, SIL has to go and cover her up before visitors come in because she's essentially topless right now because she was trying to pull her nightgown off.

I did google the dying process and have read so much about it. I think this has gone as good (so far) as could be expected. When my grandma was dying, she had the "death rattle" and it was so disturbing. She was also gasping a lot :( It was awful to watch.

Mil's breaths are more controlled ...but she does have quite a bit of apnea ...

SIL is just driving me nuts with her whole martyr act. Yes, she has been there for MIL and it's great they moved in with her...but it's not all out of selflessness....they are planning on staying there after MIL passes....they haven't asked the landlord yet but they've already moved their stuff in :001_huh:

#10 Elizabeth in MN

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 04:26 PM

Well, I'm kind of with the SIL at this point. She has been the one who is around and dealing with all the medical drama that death necessitates. She's the one calling Hospice, dealing with nurses, and she is the one who will have the "joy" of dealing with all the bills after your MIL dies.

Do you honestly expect reconciliation with your MIL at this point? She is for the most part gone and what you have now you have to deal with. It's an ugly truth, but it's there.

Yes, do speak to the nurse but I bet donuts to dollars that they will say that visitors are too agitating. We got the same song and dance when my Dad was in ICU and they banned his friend and minister. I had to fight tooth and nail to get our family minister all access to my Dad.

Right now is about your MIL. When she's passed you'll all still be around to deal with the fall out and standard family drama.

#11 PrincessMommy

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 04:52 PM

I'm sorry you're dealing with such family stress right now. Try to be gentle with yourself and your SIL. This is such a hard time on everyone. Your SIL probably has a lot of anxiety right now and it's probably why she's being so difficult. I'd suggest you offer her a chance to get out of the house for an hour or two, but it sounds like she's not the type to want to do that. Sigh. Try to let her annoyances fall off you - I know easier said that done. If it were me, I'd probably be just as irritated as you.

As to the actively dying process. I've volunteered with hospice for nearly 4 yrs. There's no way to actually tell how long it WILL be, only how long it might be. I've had two patients recently who were actively dying for more than a week! I felt awful...they both seemed so ready and it was hard on the families. But, unfortunately, we just can't say for sure what keeps someone going when the body is obviously giving up. :grouphug:

#12 Zebra

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 04:57 PM

As to the actively dying process. I've volunteered with hospice for nearly 4 yrs. There's no way to actually tell how long it WILL be, only how long it might be. I've had two patients recently who were actively dying for more than a week! I felt awful...they both seemed so ready and it was hard on the families. But, unfortunately, we just can't say for sure what keeps someone going when the body is obviously giving up. :grouphug:


:iagree:

This is a very emotionally charged situation, no matter how you look at it. :grouphug:

#13 elfgivas

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 05:05 PM

:grouphug: i'm sorry. its never easy, but it doesn't have to be this hard. maybe your dh could speak with his brother about his brother taking his wife out for 30 minutes or so while you are there to give her a break, and to allow you all to say your goodbyes without extra folks around. hopefully, he'll understand. if not, then perhaps you can just go and sit in a chair and hold her hand, and talk with her in your head and strive to find the peace and forgiveness. :grouphug:
ann

#14 Tammyla

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 05:16 PM

:iagree: Speak to the nurse that is there regardless of sil. You might try working out how you will respond to sil's butting in...Something like, thank you, but I'm still speaking with the nures.

I would speak to a hospital social worker, explain the situation, then ask to be allowed in the room without sil/bil so you could speak to her without agitating her. Your sil is probably the reason for her stress.

Now is the time to let all animosity go and just make mil comfortable and at peace.

My mother shocked all the Hospice nurses and she outlived all their predictions. She went 3 or 3.5 weeks without food, and her only hydration was when I swabbed the inside of her mouth.



#15 soror

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 05:26 PM

It sounds like your sil is a jerk. I would however follow my dh's wishes in this manner. If he didn't want to push the visiting issue then I wouldn't either (although if it were my own family I sure as *(& would). I would however want to do whatever my dh thought best during this time and make it the easiest I could on him and I would not want to add extra conflict into that equation. Lots of things bother me more than him and that is ok. He has to deal with things in his own way.

#16 besroma

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 08:49 PM

It sounds like your sil is a jerk. I would however follow my dh's wishes in this manner. If he didn't want to push the visiting issue then I wouldn't either.


:iagree: and:grouphug:

#17 Katy

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 07:34 AM

:iagree:

#18 Ruby Rose

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 08:23 AM

At end of life breathing continues to slow as the body shuts down. She will also have episodes where she stops breathing all together for what seems like forever and then start again.

Your DH needs to tell SIL to back the h3ll off! It's HIS mother and he will be with his mother as much as he wants! Maybe he should kick her out!

Sorry you are going through this. Death brings out the worst in people.

#19 lvbnhome

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 08:28 AM

I can offer you one bit of advice...

Do whatever YOU need to do, so that when You look back..
You won't regret
anything you have said or done
during this "emotionally charged" time.

In other words...make good choices in words and actions...
These times do try and challenge us...:grouphug:

You all will get through this...you will just want your response to be what it should, so you will have peace with yourself later :)

BTW..I think we might be related because your SIL sounds just like mine..hugs...:)

#20 soror

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 08:40 AM

At end of life breathing continues to slow as the body shuts down. She will also have episodes where she stops breathing all together for what seems like forever and then start again.

Your DH needs to tell SIL to back the h3ll off! It's HIS mother and he will be with his mother as much as he wants! Maybe he should kick her out!

Sorry you are going through this. Death brings out the worst in people.


Why? If her dh doesn't want to why does he have to? We all have different needs with dying loved ones. My needs are not the same as my dh's. My dh's grandpa and grandma have passed away and the dynamics between his family is not always what I would want for my own. I do agree with lvbnhome as well you want to make sure your own actions are not something you will regret, you don't want to be dragged into a brawl on anyone's deathbed. I think the primary concern should be to attend to dh and exactly what his wishes are and needs are. I'd be the witch if my dh wanted me to in a situation like that, no problem, but I'd also be the quiet supportive wife that was a shoulder to dh if that is what he needed.

#21 mykdsmomy

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 03:51 PM

Thanks again, everyone :) Dd and I went over again last night. (Dh asked us to go).

Sil told me she hasn't asked for any help (cue the violins) up until now. They will most likely be discontinuing mil's nurse starting Weds night ...so sil said she will need some help during the day while bil is at work. She then tells me that mil's sister offered to come over and help on Thurs...so it's just Friday she would need my help...during the day. She then says "I know you have court for dfd on Friday but we all have to make compromises" :glare:

When I came home and told dh this,he was LIVID. He said "They're living rent free in MY mom's house...they moved out of their apt without even checking with mil's landlord to make sure it was ok they moved in!"

DH's sister (nice sil) has offered to pay for a nurse to stay with MIL when none of us are able but (narcissistic sil) says she only wants to use her at night because she thinks it should be family that is there as much as possible....OK, fine...but she CHOSE to move in with mil. None of us asked her to do that. She has been giving all of us the guilt trip on how family should always come first even if the family is toxic.....:glare:

She has spun this whole web of her own rules that apply to everyone but her!

DH told his sister that we need to use the nurse now because I can't be there on Friday and if sil needs extra help,then a hired nurse makes most sense.

Oh and get this: She tried to tell my dd last night (in front of me!) that she doesn't expect her to come and care for MIL...since she's just a little girl (she's 17) BUT ....just a month ago, sil told ME that if dd was her dd, she would MAKE her come because she teaches her kids "family values"....:001_huh:

Drama Drama!

Again, this is all just venting so feel free to ignore me :lol: DH is in contact with his dad (who is the one paying the rent where MIL is (they're separated) ) and he has offered to pay for a nurse as well for mil.

I can't imagine it will be long now anyway....her breathing is slowing way down and becoming more labored :( Plus she hasn't had water/food for at least 5 days now :(

#22 PrincessMommy

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 03:57 PM

I'm so sorry that SIL is making a difficult situation even worse. :grouphug: Hang in there. It sounds like you're making reasonable choices.

Thanks again, everyone :) Dd and I went over again last night. (Dh asked us to go).

Sil told me she hasn't asked for any help (cue the violins) up until now. They will most likely be discontinuing mil's nurse starting Weds night ...so sil said she will need some help during the day while bil is at work. She then tells me that mil's sister offered to come over and help on Thurs...so it's just Friday she would need my help...during the day. She then says "I know you have court for dfd on Friday but we all have to make compromises" :glare:

When I came home and told dh this,he was LIVID. He said "They're living rent free in MY mom's house...they moved out of their apt without even checking with mil's landlord to make sure it was ok they moved in!"

DH's sister (nice sil) has offered to pay for a nurse to stay with MIL when none of us are able but (narcissistic sil) says she only wants to use her at night because she thinks it should be family that is there as much as possible....OK, fine...but she CHOSE to move in with mil. None of us asked her to do that. She has been giving all of us the guilt trip on how family should always come first even if the family is toxic.....:glare:

She has spun this whole web of her own rules that apply to everyone but her!

DH told his sister that we need to use the nurse now because I can't be there on Friday and if sil needs extra help,then a hired nurse makes most sense.

Oh and get this: She tried to tell my dd last night (in front of me!) that she doesn't expect her to come and care for MIL...since she's just a little girl (she's 17) BUT ....just a month ago, sil told ME that if dd was her dd, she would MAKE her come because she teaches her kids "family values"....:001_huh:

Drama Drama!

Again, this is all just venting so feel free to ignore me :lol: DH is in contact with his dad (who is the one paying the rent where MIL is (they're separated) ) and he has offered to pay for a nurse as well for mil.

I can't imagine it will be long now anyway....her breathing is slowing way down and becoming more labored :( Plus she hasn't had water/food for at least 5 days now :(




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