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s/o Who do you expect to take care of your elderly relatives?


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#51 transientChris

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 02:39 PM

No one. The only older relatives are our little bit older siblings. The oldest we have tried to help but doesn't have phone, email and isn't responding to letters. We live more than a thousand miles away and it is a bad situation with brothers fighting, (Not my dh).

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#52 SparklyUnicorn

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 02:40 PM

My mother is dead.  My dad lives in another state with my sister and at this point is in his early 60s (he had me quite young).  My FIL is dead.  My MIL lives in another country and already has a spot reserved in a posh nursing home when the time comes. 

 

So as far as I can tell I won't need to think about it for awhile or ever...



#53 WoolySocks

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 02:47 PM

I don't think parents are owed elder care by their off spring nor should they count on it.  If they have maintained a good and healthy relationship with their off spring, I think they can hope for emotional and administrative support through those years.  So I fully expect we will be involved in emotional care giving.  I don't expect anyone to come live with me or to go live with anyone else to support them.  Nor do I expect to financially support them.

 

My father died very suddenly a couple years ago, but it wasn't entirely out of the blue since he had been living with very serious heart disease for many years.  He was just 71 when he died and could have lived another 20+ years had it not been for his heart.  He was hiking and golfing to the end.  My mom is in her lower 70's and has some manageable health conditions and is living on her own.  My in laws are in their mid 80's and still living at home.  My MIL has had lots of heart problems and it's a miracle she is still in as good of shape as she is. 

 

I have friends right now who is working on getting her elderly parents into assisted living and they have very little in the way of money.  They found a program to help with that and will have them into a home within a few months.  So ask questions and look around if you do have elderly relatives that need help.  Not everyone is financially, physically, or emotionally equipped to be a full time caregiver should the rise need and I don't think it should be assumed.  If you can do that for your parents, that is a huge gift.  But if you cannot, that's ok. 


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#54 maize

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 02:56 PM

I have 9 siblings and dh has 8.

The surviving parents are all of the "independent as long as possible" variety, but we'll work out care when/as necessary. FiL took care of MiL until her final hospitalization. He has now moved to an apartment closer to several of the kids but likely has many good years ahead of him. My dad has Parkinsons but my mom is in good health. I expect her to outlive dad by at least a decade; I think several of us kids would be quite happy to have her come live with us.

My grandmothers are both still alive. One lives two doors down from her youngest daughter and has her support as well as paid help, the other moved in with her own youngest daughter last year.

Edited by maize, 17 October 2017 - 02:57 PM.

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#55 SparklyUnicorn

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 03:00 PM

I don't think parents are owed elder care by their off spring nor should they count on it.  If they have maintained a good and healthy relationship with their off spring, I think they can hope for emotional and administrative support through those years.  So I fully expect we will be involved in emotional care giving.  I don't expect anyone to come live with me or to go live with anyone else to support them.  Nor do I expect to financially support them.

 

My father died very suddenly a couple years ago, but it wasn't entirely out of the blue since he had been living with very serious heart disease for many years.  He was just 71 when he died and could have lived another 20+ years had it not been for his heart.  He was hiking and golfing to the end.  My mom is in her lower 70's and has some manageable health conditions and is living on her own.  My in laws are in their mid 80's and still living at home.  My MIL has had lots of heart problems and it's a miracle she is still in as good of shape as she is. 

 

I have friends right now who is working on getting her elderly parents into assisted living and they have very little in the way of money.  They found a program to help with that and will have them into a home within a few months.  So ask questions and look around if you do have elderly relatives that need help.  Not everyone is financially, physically, or emotionally equipped to be a full time caregiver should the rise need and I don't think it should be assumed.  If you can do that for your parents, that is a huge gift.  But if you cannot, that's ok. 

 

I agree.  I do not expect my kids to take care of me.  And heck I hope they don't have to because I don't want to ruin their life.


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#56 Murphy101

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 03:03 PM

My mother died over 20 years ago.

My dad is currently alone in another state and on hospice. (100% his choice.) He is going to die probably within the next year, if not the next few months. He is leaving everything and all legal powers to his only son, not a surprise at all and also not my problem. And really, he is an extremely angry and bitter old man who refuses to accept that he is dying bc he has a lifetime of regret that he can never make right at this point. It's sad but... not much I can do about it.

My dh is an only child and his parents are approx 14 years younger than my dad. It is looking more and more likely that we will be moving out of state. His dad has a very old mother in another state and had a brother die this year. His mom has 3 older siblings, but only one in this state. My mil is adamant that they will go to a nursing home when their time comes, so I hope they can make that happen on their own, bc we sure can't afford it. I doubt we will be able to afford repeated trips back to check on them and care for them. If they want their son at all involved in their elder care, they better come to grips with moving to wherever we have to live.

Idk. We would struggle but by golly we'd figure something out if they wanted our help. There's always room for another person at the table here.

#57 Heigh Ho

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 03:28 PM

I expect the elderly relative to make no plans, and the dd to honor the request to not go into a home. Age in place will be die in place. The last few times the end was close, the elder decided the dils should be cooks and maids...that didn't work too well due to the various work and childcare schedules, but the sons did take the cue and persuade the elder to cooperate with the doctor and comply with treatment. None of the dc can take care of the elder...elder is unwilling and would prefer to die if its not possible to be in the hospital. Elder has been crashing for the last 25 years, so reallly nothing dc can do. No one can force medication on anyone that is not a danger.
My advice is live your life. Cross the bridge when you get there.

Edited by Heigh Ho, 17 October 2017 - 03:33 PM.


#58 LarlaB

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 03:45 PM

My parents moved into a retirement community at 66 years old...they are in their own home (the nicest they've ever lived in) and my dad still works full time @68.5 years old.  They will be cared for, in that community, until they die.  I am 1500 miles away, so its a huge peace of mind for me and I'm so thankful for their careful planning.  I have one sibling 3 hours away from parents, and the other is even further away than I am- so my parents knew what they were doing facing reality that we won't be in town to care for them.

DH's parents are still working full time in their own business, with no retirement plans to speak of- 71 & 68 years old. I have no idea what they will do when physical limitations beset them.  And, they refuse to talk about it or plan for it, and still pretend (NPD that MIL is...) that they are younger than they are.  So there is no plan. And its likely going to be a sudden, chaotic mess when they need help-just as the rest of their life has been.  DH has 4 sisters, so I'm not chomping at the bit to take care of his parents even though DH is the eldest.  IL's have homes in 2 states, and would prefer to live in our state.  So my guess is that the responsibility will fall onto us, at least partly.  THat's the most I will take, to be honest.



#59 Rosie_0801

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:02 PM

I already care for my mother.

 

My estranged father will be my estranged sister's problem, should she choose to take it on. If not, he will be one of those oldies where the residential workers think nasty things about his children for not visiting the dear old man. 

 

I should have been my aunt's carer when she gets to that point, but she has also well and truly burned that bridge.

 

 



#60 Dust

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:03 PM

On my side of the family, I expect that they will live in their current home until they die, really. That is what their parents did. Barring any health problems that require full time nursing care. They've been told that they would be welcome to live with us if the need ever arose, but I think they, like their parents, would be too proud to do that. If daily care was a necessity, they would either hire a home care nurse or move to an assisted living facility. I haven't spoken to them about it, but I assume that they have sufficient retirement savings.

 

On DH's side, its culturally expected that the parents live in the son's house, even if there aren't any health concerns. The only reason they aren't living with us now is because their daughters are still unmarried, at home, and our home is too small for the 4 of them. 

 

I'm really resistant to the idea of them living with us. If they are healthy and independent, the most I would be ok with is them living in a separate building on our property. When we buy a home, finding a place for them to live reasonably close to us, or on our property will be a priority. 

 

My husband thinks it would be ideal if our basement was big enough to have a kitchen/living area and bedrooms and they could live there. 

 

My current state of pessimism leads me to believe that we will likely end up living in a 3 bedroom house MIL in a room with DD and FIL in a room with DS, assuming they are both alive when they move in. DH would not allow his mother to live alone, so if FIL dies first, she would move in with us.

 

Oooh it's a mess, but hopefully, it's still long off.



#61 ErinE

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:04 PM

One parent passed away a few years ago and the other is still active, but making plans for the future. The struggles with my living parent's own parent probably helped convince my parent to plan for the future which includes some sort of long-term care planning. I have two other siblings so between the three of us, we'll probably manage.

 

For DH's parents, I don't know.  DH's parents haven't shared plans for their future with DH and it's not something they are likely to discuss.

 

When we bought our current house, we deliberately chose a home with a bedroom on the main floor just in case we have less mobile adults living with us. We also have a zero-lot line community, an active adult apartment complex, and a nursing home within walking distance something we didn't know until we wondered at the high number of EMT visits just down the street. So if we need to open our home or move family nearby, we can.



#62 SamanthaCarter

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:13 PM

Sadly, I think my kids are going to deal with some of this. There are two sets of aunts/uncles on my side and one on dhs side who are childless. It kind of annoys me to think that the brunt of the elder care for them is going to land on my kiddos.


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Edited by SamanthaCarter, 17 October 2017 - 04:14 PM.


#63 J-rap

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:36 PM

My parents are approaching 90 and are only now starting to need more care.  Up till now, they have not wanted it.  But, my sister, brother and I are all within 2.5 hours of them.  I often go and spend a week with them at a time (many times/years), and a grandchild has lived with them almost continually (different ones) for many years now.  My dd is living with them now.  But within 6 months I think they'll need be out of their home.  My mother's health is definitely declining, and it's difficult for my father to care for her.  My siblings and I take turns stepping in to do things like cutting their toenails and deep-cleaning their kitchen and throwing out spoiled food. and my dd of course helps with a myriad of things too.  But they will probably move to a nice independent senior living facility where they can eat meals in a common dining room if they choose, and have the option for more help when they need it.  My sister will probably be within 10 minutes of wherever they end up, so she'll be at the top of their list anytime they need anything.  



#64 Jane in NC

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:45 PM

About nursing homes:  no one wants to end their lives in one, hence the promises made to spouses and parents about never ending up in one.  My mother in law made that promise to her husband.  He died at home, but it was a slow decline that taxed her own health.  She needed surgery for cancer but she could not do it while caring for her husband.  This shortened her life and certainly affected the quality of her last years.

 

My own father expected to live independently with help from my sister as required.  What he didn't think about was toileting.  I do not think any adult should expect their child to assist them with toileting.  This is one of those things that people don't want to discuss when making end of life plans.


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#65 Julie Smith

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 04:56 PM

I hear lots of talk from women about what they think they'll be doing as empty nesters, but it rarely includes talk of caring for elderly parents. Do they expect other relatives to do it? Do they not think about it?  Do they talk to other relatives in their generation about dividing things up? Or are most people ignoring it until they get that phone call and them scramble when it all goes down?
 

 

My MIL passed away years ago. My FIL is already old and needing care. He lives with my SIL who, in the next 6 months will have a brand new house with a room with a wheel chair accessible bathroom just for him. He has lived with her for the past 3+ years. They are all happy with this arrangement. She has power of attorney over him, and already does all his money stuff. It has worked out just fine, and has never caused any problems. 

 

My parents are young (66) and healthy. They have saved enough for retirement and can afford a home, and yet they both still work because they like to. My Mom has worked in and around old age homes and they plan to move into one, when the time is right. My brother and wife plan to help them out and take care of them, and perhaps live with them for that time period between being fine living alone, and moving into an old age home. We have all, already talked about end of life care, and their will. 



#66 LMD

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 05:16 PM

My mother in law works in a role that takes her into many many nursing homes. She wants to go to one! Her advice will be invaluable.
I suspect that my dh and his two siblings will all rotate helping as they are able, as their parents did. Family all pitches in. They are only in their 50s though (dh and I are in our 30s) so we hopefully have a long while.

My parents are more complicated and in their 70s. My father is interstate, I am the only one of his 5 children who speaks to him. I won't relocate. He is welcome to live with us, or near us in a assisted care facility and I will certainly help. A lot will depend on the health and capability of his wife. Our relationship isn't very close so it's going to be awkward.
My mother and I have been estranged for 5 years, and my sister lives a few minutes away from her. I will support my sister but at this stage I'm not getting directly involved. I won't let my mother end up ill-cared for, but I have my hard won boundaries. Both of my maternal grandparents were independent in their homes with only a little outside help until the end (ie no intensive day to day care) I think my mum assumes it will be the same for her - I think there's a higher chance otherwise due to some lifestyle issues. She also has a lot of siblings who will help too.
Eta- before our estrangement we had said that my mother could live with us, she wanted to go travelling and a granny flat here would be a home base. Dh says that we would consider a granny cell block waaaaaaaay on the other side of the property!

Honestly I'm dreading this stage with my parents. It's such a mess. It's going to cause great strain beyond the emotional side. I have thought about it and spoken with dh a lot...

Edited by LMD, 17 October 2017 - 05:44 PM.


#67 lavender's green

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 05:18 PM

Sadly, I think my kids are going to deal with some of this. There are two sets of aunts/uncles on my side and one on dhs side who are childless. It kind of annoys me to think that the brunt of the elder care for them is going to land on my kiddos.


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Why would it land on your kids to take care of their aunts and uncles (or is it great aunts and great uncles)? Genuinely curious. Is there a law? Is it a certain family culture? I can't imagine turning my life upside down to care for rather distant relatives, unless they had been exceptionally close.


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#68 Amber in SJ

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 05:40 PM

My mom is gone now (she was 68) and when she got sick, I dropped everything and stayed there, in my childhood bedroom for 7 weeks.  I am the only one of my siblings who could do it.  I live 3 hours away and one of my sisters lives in the same town, but she is a single mom & works full-time.  We thought that once the first intense 6 weeks was over we'd have a chemo schedule where I'd be there for one week a month for 6 months and during that week I'd help my dad care for her and do things like fill her freezer with healthy meals for them while I was gone.  That was supposed to be the 6 month plan & it was supposed to give us 2-5 more years with her, but that isn't what happened.

 

My in-laws are messier.  My MIL currently at 71 lives in a long-term residence home & has for the past 6 years.  She has MS and she also has diagnoses of bi-polar disorder and NPD.  She is in another state and while her youngest son lives close by she has damaged that relationship so badly he doesn't visit.  She gets a visit from us annually in some form; sometimes just Dh, sometimes Dh & I, sometimes all of us.  We call, FaceTime, send b-day, Mother's day & Christmas gifts.  I assume that is where she will live the rest of her life.  It is paid for by a combination of her retirements and disability.  

 

My FIL re-married a widow with 2 adult kids 25 years ago so they are obviously family.  I worry about them getting older because they live waaaaaay out of the nearest tiny town and even further from anywhere with a big medical center.  They have expressed that they don't want to come live in the "big city" with us, so aging with us is out of the question.  When we try to bring up the subject we are told it is none of our business, so we stay out of it.  There is $$ involved & FIL likes to play the kids off each other so I am sure it will get ugly.

 

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#69 katilac

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:01 PM

 
I hear lots of talk from women about what they think they'll be doing as empty nesters, but it rarely includes talk of caring for elderly parents. Do they expect other relatives to do it? Do they not think about it? 

 

 

I think about it, but it wouldn't come to mind in context of someone asking me about my plans for empty nesting. When people ask that, I assume they mean more along the lines of whether I am going to work or fill my time in other ways, I don't think of it as them asking about my family responsibilities. I plan to help no matter what, but I also don't plan on being a 24/7 caretaker no matter what, so my other plans don't really play into it.  

 

Both sets of parents are alive and in good shape, but approaching or at 80. My parents are 15 minutes away from me and 5 minutes away from my sister, so we will be able to provide routine daily assistance without too much trouble. We plan to provide some monetary assistance over the next year or two so they can go on a few nice vacations while they can still enjoy it. My brother is doing his part by taking them on of those vacations, bless him, so I'm super happy to just be providing money, lol. My dad and I would kill each other by week's end. 

 

Everyone knows I don't do anything resembling nursing or personal care. I will pay for someone to do it as needed, and I will do other stuff, but I don't give shots and I don't give baths. My sister will do some of that stuff. We will all do stuff like mowing the lawn, cleaning the house, bringing meals, serving as taxi, and so on. We'll do a few things to make the house more senior-friendly as well, like automatic lighting in the hallway. When needed, they are fine with us getting them a medical alert and fall detection system. 

 

His parents are more difficult; they are eleven hours away from us. We won't realistically be able to do much more than go up for a few days every few months, particularly while still working. His sister is six hours away, so she can go more often. His brother is even further than us. They have money, though, and some kind of care insurance. 

 

Sadly, I think my kids are going to deal with some of this. There are two sets of aunts/uncles on my side and one on dhs side who are childless. It kind of annoys me to think that the brunt of the elder care for them is going to land on my kiddos. 

 

I don't imagine they did it on purpose  :lol:

 

Why would it land on your kids to take care of their aunts and uncles (or is it great aunts and great uncles)? Genuinely curious. Is there a law? Is it a certain family culture? I can't imagine turning my life upside down to care for rather distant relatives, unless they had been exceptionally close.

 

There's a wide area between helping out and turning your life upside down. I'm not going to move to a different city to care for an aunt or other extended relative, but certainly I would bring them to the doctor, provide frozen meals, help them navigate elder services, and so on. That and more would be very typical in my family culture.  I'd see that as more valuable and more of my responsibility than official volunteer work (which most of us try to fit in). Of course, this is to the extent that I am able to do so, and that my own parents are not requiring every bit of my caregiving. Many older people never require the sort of help that would turn someone's life upside down; if they do, your help might have to consist of helping them find a decent assisted living. 



#70 lavender's green

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:20 PM

I think about it, but it wouldn't come to mind in context of someone asking me about my plans for empty nesting. When people ask that, I assume they mean more along the lines of whether I am going to work or fill my time in other ways, I don't think of it as them asking about my family responsibilities. I plan to help no matter what, but I also don't plan on being a 24/7 caretaker no matter what, so my other plans don't really play into it.  

 

Both sets of parents are alive and in good shape, but approaching or at 80. My parents are 15 minutes away from me and 5 minutes away from my sister, so we will be able to provide routine daily assistance without too much trouble. We plan to provide some monetary assistance over the next year or two so they can go on a few nice vacations while they can still enjoy it. My brother is doing his part by taking them on of those vacations, bless him, so I'm super happy to just be providing money, lol. My dad and I would kill each other by week's end. 

 

Everyone knows I don't do anything resembling nursing or personal care. I will pay for someone to do it as needed, and I will do other stuff, but I don't give shots and I don't give baths. My sister will do some of that stuff. We will all do stuff like mowing the lawn, cleaning the house, bringing meals, serving as taxi, and so on. We'll do a few things to make the house more senior-friendly as well, like automatic lighting in the hallway. When needed, they are fine with us getting them a medical alert and fall detection system. 

 

His parents are more difficult; they are eleven hours away from us. We won't realistically be able to do much more than go up for a few days every few months, particularly while still working. His sister is six hours away, so she can go more often. His brother is even further than us. They have money, though, and some kind of care insurance. 

 

 

I don't imagine they did it on purpose  :lol:

 

 

There's a wide area between helping out and turning your life upside down. I'm not going to move to a different city to care for an aunt or other extended relative, but certainly I would bring them to the doctor, provide frozen meals, help them navigate elder services, and so on. That and more would be very typical in my family culture.  I'd see that as more valuable and more of my responsibility than official volunteer work (which most of us try to fit in). Of course, this is to the extent that I am able to do so, and that my own parents are not requiring every bit of my caregiving. Many older people never require the sort of help that would turn someone's life upside down; if they do, your help might have to consist of helping them find a decent assisted living. 

 

Ah, I think there's a definition issue going on. More on my end. :) I guess I consider those things friendly favors, not necessarily elder care. Based on recent experiences in my family, I hear the term "elder care" and think of a whole lot more. And my kids are so little that I just can't think of caring for them, plus the level of care that someone like my grandma, with diabetes and dementia, needs. I would literally break. So, I hope that clarifies where my question was coming from. Now I feel silly for asking it. LOL. Obviously, obviously, there's a wide range in care.
 


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#71 fairfarmhand

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:24 PM

My dad and step mom have taken steps to ensure that nobody has to do hands on care. They've got money and long term care insurance. My mother, before she died was an invalid for 12 years and it was super important to my dad to plan so his kids don't have to do that for him. He's literally told me that he does NOT want his kids caring for him. He's afraid it would ruin our marriages and stress us too badly. He asked me to find a nice place for him, and COME TO SEE HIM. That's what he wants. He wants that relationship, not the caregiving.

 

My mil will be an entirely different story. I'm not sure how that will play out, but I doubt we can give hands on care. I can't see her leaving her area, and we live 2 hours away. The money and long term care planning will be an issue. This is head in the sand stuff. I can't do anything about it, as an in-law, I can't nudge people that direction, so I just try to not think about it!

 



#72 Sassenach

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:36 PM

This is a s/o of the current reinventing yourself thread for veteran homeschoolers. 

I hear lots of talk from women about what they think they'll be doing as empty nesters, but it rarely includes talk of caring for elderly parents. Do they expect other relatives to do it? Do they not think about it?  Do they talk to other relatives in their generation about dividing things up? Or are most people ignoring it until they get that phone call and them scramble when it all goes down?

I'm right on the verge of this and already helped care for elderly grandparents so I think about this all the time, but I'm not sure that's typical. 

Anyone else facing more parents than reliable, available adult children to handle it? Siblings living away from parents is a factor in other people's situations too. How is that working out for the BTDT crowd?  Anyone having to use facilities elderly parents said they don't want to fill the gap? 

Any thoughts or advice on this constellation of issues?

We live 7+ hours away from all of our parents.

 

Dh's parents are quite a bit older than mine. His mom will go into whatever home medicare covers. She's mentally ill and I don't see any scenario where she lives with us. His dad is in his mid-70's and we would gladly care for him. Right now he's doing quite well and so is his wife (he's divorced from dh's mom and remarried). She has a bunch of children that live nearby. I know they'll want to stay together if they go into a different living situation, and they have financially planned for it. I think if he goes first, his wife and her children will do the care. If she goes first, he will probably come live with or near us.

 

My parents are still young. My mom isn't even 60 yet. I feel like we have at least a decade or 2 before we have to address anything. My dad is older, 65, but he and his whole side of the family ages phenomonally. My parents are also divorced, and my step-dad doesn't have any kids. He's actually the one I think will go first because he really isn't taking care of his heart. No matter what, I'm sure it'll be me who takes responsibility for it all. My brother will be willing to help, but he's not the take charge kind. I would have to direct him. He's single and right now his profession is a long haul truck driver, so not exactly conducive to elder care.



#73 Tibbie Dunbar

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:41 PM

My dad and step mom have taken steps to ensure that nobody has to do hands on care. They've got money and long term care insurance. My mother, before she died was an invalid for 12 years and it was super important to my dad to plan so his kids don't have to do that for him. He's literally told me that he does NOT want his kids caring for him. He's afraid it would ruin our marriages and stress us too badly. He asked me to find a nice place for him, and COME TO SEE HIM. That's what he wants. He wants that relationship, not the caregiving.


I'm with your dad, to the point that I've already told my kids and will put a directive about it in my will. I've told them that if ever insist on living with them, or expect them or their spouses or children to care for me, no matter how I behave, that is NOT what the "real Mama" wants. It will be childishness, loneliness, dementia or something else talking. I, right now with my sound mind, do not want my children's families' daily lives to revolve around my care. Put me in a home, with my peers who are in the same stage of life. Visit me. Check on me. That's enough.

Related - I worry so much about dementia or Alz and breaking their hearts. So I've also told them that if ever say I'm disappointed in them, or that didn't enjoy raising them, or that I don't forgive them for childish mistakes, ANY of that, they will know I'm not in my right mind. Because the "real Mama" will always love, accept, and treasure each one of them, unconditionally. Whatever happens, I hope they remember.
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#74 Sassenach

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:41 PM

Sadly, I think my kids are going to deal with some of this. There are two sets of aunts/uncles on my side and one on dhs side who are childless. It kind of annoys me to think that the brunt of the elder care for them is going to land on my kiddos.


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I have an aunt and uncle who are childless, but I'm pretty sure they are multi-millionaires. They're the type who have saved and planned to the nth degree.

 

It's my aunt whose 2 kids are total pot-head bums that I worry about. She's terrible with money and my cousins have never held a job (they're in their late 20's). I'm hoping I don't get stuck with a mess there. 



#75 Heigh Ho

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:44 PM

Ah, I think there's a definition issue going on. More on my end. :) I guess I consider those things friendly favors, not necessarily elder care. Based on recent experiences in my family, I hear the term "elder care" and think of a whole lot more. And my kids are so little that I just can't think of caring for them, plus the level of care that someone like my grandma, with diabetes and dementia, needs. I would literally break. So, I hope that clarifies where my question was coming from. Now I feel silly for asking it. LOL. Obviously, obviously, there's a wide range in care.


Agree. Meals, transportation, groceries, and senior services are all supplied by the community at low cost here. What the elder wants as elder care is cleaning, driving when the senior bus or taxi isn't available, assistance with personal care, household chores, and medication. Then add in some discussion about medical plan and wise use of.

#76 Kassia

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:49 PM

he will be one of those oldies where the residential workers think nasty things about his children for not visiting the dear old man. 

 

I should have been my aunt's carer when she gets to that point, but she has also well and truly burned that bridge.

 

We are in this situation, too - estranged mother and distanced ourselves from in-laws.  Public forum so that's all I can say.  

 

My father lived out of state and I worried about this issue all the time.  He refused to move closer to me (he lived in FL and I live in a cold climate with lots of snow).  He died pretty suddenly which was hard on me, but it was a blessing for him because he was terrified of hospitals and any kind of assisted living/nursing homes.  I don't know what we would have done if he had gotten to that point.  



#77 Sadie

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 06:52 PM

I really differ from many of you. So long as one's parents are not abusive, I do feel, as children, we owe them whatever care we can manage. 

 

Being a daughter (or a son) comes with responsibilities as well as rights; I didn't cease being a daughter simply because I became an adult. 

 

I may not be able to offer the kind of care my parents would like; my children may not be able to do the same to me. But yes, to me, family (so long as that family is functional) owes each other care of some kind. Otherwise, what is the point of family?


Edited by Sadie, 17 October 2017 - 06:53 PM.

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#78 Rosika

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:02 PM

We are a baker's dozen, and two of us live within 10 miles of our parents. The bulk of the work will fall to us two. Of us two, my brother is single and a high wage earner. His help will largely be financial and respite. I don't work outside of the home, and will not return to work once my last homeschooler graduates (current youngest is in 7th but I have a caboose who's nearly 1 ... not sure if I'll homeschool that one, I'm ready to "retire" from that job.) In part, the decision to stay home will be so that I'm 100% available for the day-to-day of our parents. My husband is completely on board with this decision.

 

Our brothers and sisters who are not local will help however they're able to - financial, respite, doctors stuff. I have two brothers who are physicians, a sister who is an accountant, a sister who sells life insurance, a sister who is a lawyer (she's not estate planning, but dates a guy who is!), and a sister-in-law who does worker's comp (and is able to help navigate health insurance issues for us) - lots of them are in a position to help in their own way. Our parents are in their early 60s, and very active and healthy. They currently help with day-to-day care for their parents - my grandmother who is 94 and my other grandmother who is 88. Both are very active and still living in their own homes. Their "own homes" are homes shared with one of their children, each grandmother having moved in more than 20 years ago to help care for grandchildren. 

 

My in-laws are in their late 70s. One is in great physical health, the other is showing signs of early dementia/suspected Alzheimers (runs in her family). They still live in their 5000 sq ft house, master upstairs, but are looking to downsize in the next year. They're trying to decide between a townhouse in the same area, or a move into a residential living facility (the kind that starts with an apartment and goes all the way to hospice care.) They have five kids, all very involved in their lives and all who will pitch in to help anyway necessary. He sells life insurance, so they've planned for these years for any contingency. "Help" will be things like driving to appointments and making sure spiritual needs are met. They'll probably hire a chef to prepare food on a weekly basis, and already have a live-in housekeeper. 

 

My ex's parents are in their mid 60s in mediocre health - not super healthy, nor sick; just "normal". They only have two children, including a strained relationship with my ex and a hot/cold relationship with his sister. I'm still close to them and worry that some of their care will fall to me and my children. Their kids are too self-absorbed and busy with their own lives. My ex-MIL juggled a business of her own while being the sole caretaker for her own mother, father, and FIL (all died of cancer) in their final years/months. Her siblings offered no help, just criticism for how ex-MIL managed their care. I won't uproot my life for them (they live in another state) but I will be sure my kids and I do what we're able to in assistance to them. They own a home near me that they use when they visit. If they end up moving here, I'll help with the day-to-day if they allow it. MIL will; ex-FIL likely won't.


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#79 Jane in NC

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:10 PM

I really differ from many of you. So long as one's parents are not abusive, I do feel, as children, we owe them whatever care we can manage. 

 

Being a daughter (or a son) comes with responsibilities as well as rights; I didn't cease being a daughter simply because I became an adult. 

 

I may not be able to offer the kind of care my parents would like; my children may not be able to do the same to me. But yes, to me, family (so long as that family is functional) owes each other care of some kind. Otherwise, what is the point of family?

 

I essentially agree with you, Sadie, although I did draw a line at toileting for a specific reason.  My elderly father found it humiliating to have help from a daughter in this case.  He recognized that he would need outside help in the home to assist him with bathroom stuff or move into a nursing care facility which is what he ended up doing.

 

I have several friends who have moved into new homes or adapted their existing home to accommodate aging family members.  I had asked my parents to consider moving nearer to me when they were still able bodied but they did not want to leave the city that they had called home for all of their married life.  That seems to be a problem within many families.  If the aging parents refuse to leave their home, they cannot expect adult children with jobs and lives elsewhere to abandon those jobs and lives.

 

It can be challenging.


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#80 Homeschool Mom in AZ

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:15 PM

I do think we owe them what we can realistically do, but care at a facility may be necessary regardless of their stated wishes...if anyone could get them to articulate those wishes, that is.  What is it about American culture that makes people inclined to ignore their inevitable medical declines and deaths?

Locally I have:

1. my mother
2. my step-dad
3. my MIL
4. my FIL
5. my dad

All are in their mid 70s and now all have ongoing health problems.

My husband's only sister (47) has stage 4 cancer and isn't expected to live through the end of this year.

My bio brother and his wife (mid 40s) the both work full time, they just adopted our niece (2), and have custody of brother's mildly special needs son (14) who may not be independent for quite a while.

2 Step-brothers (by step-dad) we were raised with  (early 50s) oldest is recovering from a nasty and expensive divorce, the other is childless and is married to an older woman (early 60s) who is still working and may continue to do so for as long as she can.

Step-sister (by step-dad) works full time and helps take care of her mother who is both mentally and physically ill. Was estranged (abducted) from step-dad and doesn't really know him well but is around sometimes for family gatherings.


We helped my mother, an only child, care for her parents at the end and it was only 3 years of care-I know people who have parents too fragile to live on their own and too healthy to justify the incredible expense of living in a facility or hired in home care for years and years. 

Our homeschool art teacher, a single guy whose mother died and whose father (early 90s) is in fragile health, is completely overwhelmed and has sister, who lives next door is a drunk unable to care for herself well, much less a dependent adult. It's been years of care giving for him.

My paternal grandfather (who I met twice in childhood-he lived on the other side of the country and was estranged from most family) was a horrible person who lived to see his early 90s and was in declining health.  He had been so verbally and physically abusive, someone only came by every week or so to check on him out of a sense of duty.  He fell in the kitchen, cut himself in the fall and spent a few days on the floor.  By the time he was discovered and taken to a hospital there was gangrene and blood poisoning. He died.

I have friends with 2 careers and 2 kids caring for an elderly aunt as much as they can.  Aunt has 1 child and 1 grandchild-neither are well functioning adults.  Aunt expected them to let her live with them.  They had to explain to her that wasn't realistic-they found a care facility.
 



#81 Rosie_0801

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:17 PM

Nursing homes need to be reliably decent places so oldies don't have to fear being incarcerated in one.



#82 Tibbie Dunbar

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:21 PM

I really differ from many of you. So long as one's parents are not abusive, I do feel, as children, we owe them whatever care we can manage. 
 
Being a daughter (or a son) comes with responsibilities as well as rights; I didn't cease being a daughter simply because I became an adult. 
 
I may not be able to offer the kind of care my parents would like; my children may not be able to do the same to me. But yes, to me, family (so long as that family is functional) owes each other care of some kind. Otherwise, what is the point of family?


I don't think the perspective is all that different - many of us who are noting that our parents have other caretakers, have moved ourselves out of that position because of the lifelong abuse we've endured. Looking at some of the names...I see a lot of people who have forgiven and kept trying because it's family, but eventually hit a moment when self preservation had to take priority.

For me, I'd do almost anything for family, because I was raised to believe that family was the most important thing, but they keep literally cursing me to hell. It's been over forty years. Up until this latest incident, I was still trying to be a good daughter, granddaughter, and niece, but it's starting to sink in that I'll never be accepted.

I think we are seeing people who really would wish it could be as you say, and agree with the ideal, but are carrying a lot of pain and can't also face the expense and trial of waiting on our abusers in their old age.
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#83 matrips

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:23 PM

My mom is 84 and I moved her to assisted living last year. She had a fall at her independent living apartment and then wasn’t allowed to return. It was a scramble but she is much happier now anyway. She and my dad (passed away 4 years ago) would have been so much better off if they had moved out of their house years ago. She agrees. But it’s tough to make that decision to leave your home. It came down to crisis mode and emergency move out of state to where I live in Florida. Not the way to do things. It’s taken several years to adjust to her new reality and loss of control. Mail still goes to her for that reason but I pay all the bills (her money) and make arrangements. My sister lives overseas and my brother across the country.

MIL lives about 1000 miles away and is 88 but very healthy and gets around well. My bil moved in with her about a year or so ago.

#84 Murphy101

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:29 PM

Nursing homes need to be reliably decent places so oldies don't have to fear being incarcerated in one.


Indeed. I'm far more scared of ending up in a nursing home than being a burden on my kids.
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#85 eternalsummer

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:38 PM

Nursing homes need to be reliably decent places so oldies don't have to fear being incarcerated in one.

 

To be perfectly honest with you, I am not sure if a nursing home can be good.  My grandmother-in-law lives in an expensive, clean, bright, outwardly cheerful one.  It is pretty much what you'd want if you thought you wanted something specific in a nursing home.

 

Visiting her there is like walking into an orphanage, but worse.  It is horrifying.  The cleanness and bright colors and soothing music and activities and decorations just make it seem macabre.

 

Most of the people there are desperate for human contact, especially with children.  They are lonely.  They are beyond lonely.  They are the toddler you dropped off at daycare and then didn't come back to pick up for 2 weeks.  It can be the nicest daycare in the world, and the toddler is still missing an essential component of life - love and connection to their family.  

 

Plus, esp. with my grandmother-in-law's place, there are some patients (my grandfather-in-law, when he was living there with her, called them "inmates"), including grandmother-in-law, who have dementia or (maybe?) Alzheimers.  So instead of having the person who has some memory problems and isn't that sure of her surroundings living with a family full of largely mentally competent people, she lives with 40 other old people who have memory problems and aren't sure of their surroundings.  one of them spends his entire day - literally hours every day, every time we visit - saying (loudly), "Oh, Lord.  Oh, Lord. Oh, Lord."  Others carry on conversations with people who aren't there, or ask everyone they see if they can be released, or just sit like zombies in their wheelchairs (they are pretty regularly drugged, including grandmother-in-law, to be compliant and quiet and peaceful).

 

DH worked at one of these places temporarily as an administrative worker but also did a fair amount of pushing around residents in their wheelchairs and taking them to dinner and this and that.  It was the same at the place he worked when I visited.  

 

 

I have nothing good to say about nursing homes except as a last resort, or about people who consign their elderly to them except as a last resort.  I would have nothing good to say about someone who dropped off her child at an orphanage because the kid was too expensive, or inconvenient, or unpleasant to care for, either (except as a last resort).


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#86 Sadie

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:39 PM

I don't think the perspective is all that different - many of us who are noting that our parents have other caretakers, have moved ourselves out of that position because of the lifelong abuse we've endured. Looking at some of the names...I see a lot of people who have forgiven and kept trying because it's family, but eventually hit a moment when self preservation had to take priority.

For me, I'd do almost anything for family, because I was raised to believe that family was the most important thing, but they keep literally cursing me to hell. It's been over forty years. Up until this latest incident, I was still trying to be a good daughter, granddaughter, and niece, but it's starting to sink in that I'll never be accepted.

I think we are seeing people who really would wish it could be as you say, and agree with the ideal, but are carrying a lot of pain and can't also face the expense and trial of waiting on our abusers in their old age.

 

I'm sorry I wasn't clear enough. Sons and daughters are not obligated to care for their abusers. Abuse most definitely breaks the family obligations. 

 

My own parents weren't (aren't) perfect. In fact, in my teens, my mother was my emotional and physical abuser. Thankfully, she was remorseful and made amends and we now have a functional relationship. Absent those things, I would not consider myself to be obliged. 


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#87 Sadie

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:41 PM

To be perfectly honest with you, I am not sure if a nursing home can be good.  My grandmother-in-law lives in an expensive, clean, bright, outwardly cheerful one.  It is pretty much what you'd want if you thought you wanted something specific in a nursing home.

 

Visiting her there is like walking into an orphanage, but worse.  It is horrifying.  The cleanness and bright colors and soothing music and activities and decorations just make it seem macabre.

 

Most of the people there are desperate for human contact, especially with children.  They are lonely.  They are beyond lonely.  They are the toddler you dropped off at daycare and then didn't come back to pick up for 2 weeks.  It can be the nicest daycare in the world, and the toddler is still missing an essential component of life - love and connection to their family.  

 

Plus, esp. with my grandmother-in-law's place, there are some patients (my grandfather-in-law, when he was living there with her, called them "inmates"), including grandmother-in-law, who have dementia or (maybe?) Alzheimers.  So instead of having the person who has some memory problems and isn't that sure of her surroundings living with a family full of largely mentally competent people, she lives with 40 other old people who have memory problems and aren't sure of their surroundings.  one of them spends his entire day - literally hours every day, every time we visit - saying (loudly), "Oh, Lord.  Oh, Lord. Oh, Lord."  Others carry on conversations with people who aren't there, or ask everyone they see if they can be released, or just sit like zombies in their wheelchairs (they are pretty regularly drugged, including grandmother-in-law, to be compliant and quiet and peaceful).

 

DH worked at one of these places temporarily as an administrative worker but also did a fair amount of pushing around residents in their wheelchairs and taking them to dinner and this and that.  It was the same at the place he worked when I visited.  

 

 

I have nothing good to say about nursing homes except as a last resort, or about people who consign their elderly to them except as a last resort.  I would have nothing good to say about someone who dropped off her child at an orphanage because the kid was too expensive, or inconvenient, or unpleasant to care for, either (except as a last resort).

 

I've worked in nursing homes. I agree with what you've posted here about nursing homes. 

 

I doubt I will ever forget the sight of an elderly woman being strapped to a chair 'so she didn't wander'. And no, this wasn't considered abuse. This was standard operating procedure. 

 

I really hope neither of my parents has to go into one. I will do my best to ensure they don't. That's not always possible, of course. 

 

 


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#88 Sadie

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:43 PM

Nursing homes need to be reliably decent places so oldies don't have to fear being incarcerated in one.

 

Yep. Sadly, the oldies lobby doesn't seem to have the power to force through neccessary change. 


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#89 eternalsummer

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:46 PM

They say you can judge a society by how it treats the weak and powerless (children, animals, the elderly).  On those three counts we are not doing great, IMO.  Old people aren't even cute.  We're generally decent to babies and puppies, but we're not great with older kids/teenagers (put them in solitary for years!), farm animals like chickens (not cute, not fuzzy, who cares?), and the elderly.


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#90 2ndgenhomeschooler

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:57 PM

DH’s grandparents live 1500 miles from us. He has a couple of aunts who live in town and help care for them. MIL travels out there for several weeks at a time several times a year. His grandmother has severe dementia and is in a nursing home but his grandfather still lives at home. He has heart problems and DH’s cousin has recently moved into his house to help care for him.

My grandparents live about 10 hours from us. My paternal grandmother is 85 but still fairly independent. My grandfather died 10 years ago and she’s been living on her own since then. My dad’s two siblings have passed away and my dad is the only one left. He tries to arrange to work down there every month or so so that he can check on her. His SIL lives locally and sees her every week as well. My grandmother is a spirited, fiery, independent woman. I have no idea what will happen when/if she’s no longer able to live alone. That won’t be easy for anyone

My maternal grandparents are still very independent and physically strong. They are 79, live in their own house on 5 acres with their horses and dog and are mentally very sharp. They have four children and 29 grandchildren so there will always be someone available to help them out. Several of my teenage cousins already go over once a week to help them with their yard. My parents plan to move back in the next few years to be available to help care for their parents when it becomes necessary.

My parents are 57 and 60 years old and DH’s are 63 and 65. They are all still fairly healthy although my dad had several major health events a few years ago. My parents should be pretty set financially. They are months away from paying off their house, my dad has good retirement savings, and they have good insurances. I also have 7 siblings to help care for them when the time comes. DH’s parents aren’t as prepared. They don’t own their home (it’s the church parsonage), and I don’t think they have anything saved for retirement. Since having to care for DH’s grandparents they are trying to get things set up for their future. DH has only one sibling who will do what he can to help but we are much closer and, at this point, better positioned to care for them when the time comes. We are starting the process of selling our home and purchasing a home that is set perfectly for elder care. It has an attached but private apartment for those who are more independent and a smaller living area/bedroom/bath in the main house for those who need more help. (It was built by friends specifically for caring for their aging parents.) We also have a single friend with no close family nearby that we may help care for. He’s 75 but based on family history probably has 10-15 years of independent living ahead of him.

#91 LMD

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 07:59 PM

Nursing homes need to be reliably decent places so oldies don't have to fear being incarcerated in one.

True. But I do think that part of the negative stereotype is not generally reality anymore.
My mil's job is basically quality assessment of nursing homes state wide and she reckons she'll enjoy life in one!
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#92 StephanieZ

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:06 PM

I agree.  I do not expect my kids to take care of me.  And heck I hope they don't have to because I don't want to ruin their life.

 

I took care of my mom for her last 18 months in my home. I took care of her long distance for the prior 2 years. She didn't ruin my life. It was a blessing and honor to be able to return a small part of the caregiving she gave me and my family during her life. The same goes for my children and my husband, who, like me, made great sacrifices to do what we did, and can now look back on what we did for Mom with comfort of knowing we did all we could to make her last months as beautiful as possible. 

 

Be careful how you phrase these sorts of things. It is painful to hear people say things that to my ears call my mother a burden or call my caregiving something that "ruined my life". I heard it loud and clear before I did what I did and during the entire time I did what I did, and still now, after both my parents are long buried, it is painful to hear that. It hurts, just like it'd hurt if (when?) you heard people (over and over) tell you that you staying home with your kids was wasting your life, or you homeschooling would ruin your marriage or your kids' lives. These sorts of decisions are profoundly personal and important. It's important to respect the choices others make. . . and to consider that when you speak/write. 


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#93 fairfarmhand

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:07 PM

two things though:

 

1. Here's an interesting piece NPR did on "elder orphans,' those who are aging without children.

http://www.wbur.org/...5/elder-orphans

 

Another thing.

 

My mother was in a nursing home for the last 6-8 months of her life. My dad did everything possible to care for her after her 11.5 years long decline from brain cancer and if anyone suggests that he "dumped her in a home" for convenience and money, I'd love to punch them in the face. SOMETIMES THERE IS NO OTHER OPTION.

 

When you have a dementia diagnosis, in many families, it's a safe memory care place or grandma burning the house down or wandering off naked in winter and freezing to death.

 

People do what they must do and putting someone in a nursing home does not mean that the family does not care.

 

From all the places that my mom went, we figured something out. (she was in and out of care facilities for a good five years) The people who have folks checking on them regularly...like more than 2-3 times per week, will get much better care than those who don't have visitors. My dad is a SUPER proactive, assertive (almost to the point of being a jerk) person, but he demanded good care for my mom AND HE GOT IT.

 

So, if you HAVE to put an elder in a nursing home, you can't just drop them there and visit at Christmas and Easter. You must check on them regularly and demand proper care.

 

I will not extract promises from my family that they may not be able to keep. I refuse to do that to them. I trust that I'll raise them right and have the kind of relationship with them that I can know that they'll make the right decisions, not only for me, but for their families.

 

Also, my dh and I plan to have assets in place to make it easier for them to pay people to do for us.

 

I also do not plan on extending my life artificially when I have a terminal illness. That takes a terrible toll on family. People's kids can care for someone for 6 months. But sometimes, people are in the process of dying for years. And that is unsustainable and unfair.


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#94 Jane in NC

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:10 PM

True. But I do think that part of the negative stereotype is not generally reality anymore.
My mil's job is basically quality assessment of nursing homes state wide and she reckons she'll enjoy life in one!

 

There were aspects of the nursing home that my father enjoyed.  He was lonely after my mother died.  At the nursing home, he had dining companions, occasional outings, optional activities, bible study class. He started attending services for various religions to learn more about other beliefs, something that rather astounded us.

 

Meals on Wheels also contributed to the quality of his life prior to the nursing home. My father enjoyed cooking but he wasn't eating a lot.  Still he'd make something like a pot of soup or stew and then eat it repeatedly.  He admitted that Meals on Wheels and the nursing home gave him more variety in his diet. 

 

There were things that were just hard for him.  He became a very messy eater toward the end.  It embarrassed him but the nursing home folks encouraged him to continue to eat in the dining room, to be social.

 

This may not have been ideal but I don't think it was horrible.
 


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#95 Sadie

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:25 PM

I hate to say it, but I think money can make a difference re nursing homes. Bad luck if you can't afford an upgrade to a better class of home, I guess. 


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#96 Murphy101

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:32 PM

True. But I do think that part of the negative stereotype is not generally reality anymore.
My mil's job is basically quality assessment of nursing homes state wide and she reckons she'll enjoy life in one!


Then she sure as heck isn’t spending time in one in my state.
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#97 slackermom

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:45 PM

My parents split up when I was in high school. Dad lives in west Texas, Mom lives in Florida. I relocated to New England, and stayed due to Dh's family being here. Dh and I are planning to separate soon, but our kid is just starting high school next year, so I don't plan to go far during the next 5 years. MIL is planning to move in with Dh, and I suppose she expected that I would take care of her, but I will not be around for that. The house is next door to more of her family though, and there is much extended family in the neighborhood.

 

My dad's extended second family is large. His wife wants to move across the state to be with her newest grandchild. My brother lives in that city that they are moving to as well, so there will be family around to keep an eye on each other. My mom is also remarried, and getting ready to move to another state, which they probably expect to be their final home. It is closer to me, like 4-5 hours away, maybe. I am not sure if I will move closer to her when the time comes. We will see.



#98 _______

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:48 PM

nm


Edited by Catheryn, 23 October 2017 - 08:42 AM.


#99 Janeway

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 08:59 PM

No one. The only older relatives are our little bit older siblings. The oldest we have tried to help but doesn't have phone, email and isn't responding to letters. We live more than a thousand miles away and it is a bad situation with brothers fighting, (Not my dh).

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I was about to post that I won't have any older relatives to care for. I am so far down the list, it won't land on me. But then you mention siblings. None of my older siblings have kids. I wonder if I will end up expected to care for them. My older sister I could see helping. Sheesh!!! I could never abandon any of them!!! Ugh! 



#100 onelittlemonkey

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Posted 17 October 2017 - 09:05 PM

Me. I’m an only. That scares me some, but it’s also a relief. *I* get to make the decisions as *I* see fit, without relying on anyone else’s input (well, dh will help me out, too). It’s kind of a freeing thought, tbh. And obviously I’ll do the best I possibly can for my parents and when the time comes, put them in the best place I can.