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Show ALL Forums  > Over 45  > Caring for our parents......      Home login  
 AUTHOR
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 26
Caring for our parents......Page 2 of 5    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
John at this point im too tired to even recognize being hit on if it landed in my lap.... but in any case....

As I mentioned in my original post.. with the grace of God and my parents hard work they are pretty financially secure. However... I could care less what they leave me because I want them to use ALL their money to keep them comfortable.
Which is why I argue with my dad a lot. ( not argue but protest) because he is always saying he worked hard all his life and made wise financial decisions so that he could leave his family with something.... but when I tell him SPEND IT on their heath needs.. all of a sudden he becomes scrooge and doesn't wanna spend a dime!! Which frankly wears on my last nerve. I just dont get it sometimes.
 SueCat51
Joined: 8/11/2007
Msg: 27
view profile
History
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/3/2007 7:00:12 PM
OP - gosh you're in a bind, my heart goes out to you. It's not quite time to hit the panic button but some things to think about:

#1 - assess their needs. Do they need help with bathing, grooming, housework, shopping, preparing meals, etc. Do they need help in managing their finances and paying bills? Do they need help in making legal decisions or other business decisions? Are there any modifications that need to be done at their home (grab bars for the showers, wheel chair ramps, etc)?

#2 - this is the nitty gritty legal stuff and it's important to get it done and known while they are of sound mind:
* financial power of attorney to make financial decisions and pay bills
* living will to make life-support decisions
* medical power of attorney to make health care decisions
* durable power of attorney to make legal decisions
* access to safe deposit box
* may choose to be added to deeds and mortgages
* may need to be added to automobile insurance
* know the person's wishes (medical treatments, funeral, finances, etc.)

#3 - Information to have on hand (know where these documents are)

* insurance (Medicare / Medicaid number, supplement, other policies)
* doctors (names, phone numbers, and other contact information)
* medical history (medications, allergies, conditions, procedures)
* identification (social security, military ID, driver's license numbers)
* address list (friends, neighbors, family)
* service providers (attorney, financial advisor, clergy, accountant)
* financial (account numbers, checkbook, investments, tax records)
* legal (wills, powers of attorney, health care directive)
* deeds (house, other property, car title, boat title)
* insurance (life, medical, auto, homeowner's)
* household (mortgage, apartment lease, property tax records)
* vital records (birth certificate, marriage license, divorce decree)
* final wishes (organ donation, burial, property distribution)

#4 - focus on YOU! Don't be afraid to ask for help. That includes support groups, even some of the forums, people that have been there can help you through this time. Make sure you keep your health up, take some "breaks", etc. Too often, Caregivers get burned out and you don't want to go down that road. This is something that you cannot do alone!
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 28
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/3/2007 7:06:58 PM
awwwwww SUE that was PERFECT!!!! A great "to do" list for anyone in this position!!!!!

Personally I was all good up to # 4 because it was 1 through 3 that has me exhausted!!!

I think tonight I just need a glass ( or 3) of wine and a Calgon bath.

Once again that really is a PERFECT list and until this very MOMENT I didnt realize just how much I did get done these past 6 mos.

To all the other people who will sadly find themselves in this predicament.... PLEASE copy and paste this list to your favorites..... just in case!!!!

I know this is sappy and I dont know any of you.... But I LOVE YOU GUYS!!!!
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 29
A tear or two....
Posted: 10/4/2007 5:50:42 PM
Someone sent this to me and well......

Look for yourself. ( Have tissues handy)

http://parentswish.com/site01/big.html

jj
 Malley
Joined: 5/12/2007
Msg: 30
A tear or two....
Posted: 10/5/2007 2:43:35 PM
justjanice ...

aaah welcome to the wonderful world of the sandwich generation ... I was the sole caregiver for both of my parents ... little or no help from family ... they did offer and promise but never really came through ... do I regret it? ... NO ... I forged a deeper bond with them than I ever would have otherwise ... did I miss out on my life ... yah, probably ... but that was a price I was willing to pay ... they, after all gave up a lot for me ... however this is a very personal choice and one that can only be made by you ... do not allow yourself to be guilted ... nor should you allow this to consume you ... because in the end ... who cares for the caregiver? ... a lot of major centre have day-care programs for seniors ... personal hygiene can be assisted, physio as well as occupation therapy can be assessed and assist with teaching your dad how to maneuver your mom with minimal effort on his part ... home assessments can be done to determine what is necessary to aid in the day to day tasks ...
there are a lot of volunteer organizations that do visitations ... check your local churches, VON, senior agencies ... one call can direct you to a lot of resources ... if a volunteer were to drop by for a friendly visit ... dad could scoot out for groceries ... take a nap or whatever he needs to re-charge his batteries ... be aware though that volunteers are not permitted to do any of the things that a professional can ... another option would be to find a student nurse ... perhaps if it was put to your father as ... this poor little thing needs some experience before she graduates ... he would feel he was helping her ... if you have any kind of power of attorney over their finances ... you could be paying this person without there knowledge ... or out of your own pocket if possible ... if it eases your burden of guilt ...
at the end of the day ... this could go on indefinitely ... and do not waste your time arguing and fighting with them as to what is in their best interests ... as stated by many, if they are of sound mind ... let them decide what is right for them ... many seniors fear that going into a home means they are being discarded and will be ignored by family ... going to a place to wait to die ... it must indeed be extremely difficult to face the fact that the end is in sight ... so sometimes they tend to ignore these decisions ... if their decisions end up to be in opposition to yours ... and turn out to be wrong ... then so be it ... at least you have maintained a relationship with them ... think back to your teen years ... did you listen to them?? they had your best interests at heart ... sometimes we need to back off and let 'em do what they gotta do ... hope all turns out to be beneficial to all ... you have my sympathy as well as my envy ... you have what we all wish we could recoup ... time ... use it wisely ...

~Malley
 springazure44
Joined: 9/1/2007
Msg: 31
A tear or two....
Posted: 10/5/2007 4:38:11 PM
OP!!!! I'm a female currently caring for my mother 24/7. But I can't contact you, due to your restrictions....

Feel free to contact me just to chat.....
 Ann_Marie_2008
Joined: 7/7/2005
Msg: 32
view profile
History
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/5/2007 6:34:42 PM
JJ,

I haven't been around in a while, but stumbled across you post. My heart goes out to you because I am in a simular situation.

I take care of my 83 yr. old dad. I don't get out much at all. My only communication with people is via online. I also have a 15 yr. old daughter, and I'm divorced.

Try not to stress out so much. Let your dad spend his money on your mom and him so someone can come in and take care of them. This may not happen with your parents, but if the time comes where they can't make their own choices, you can file for POA and use their money to provide care for both of them as you feel it needs to be.

Try not to feel quilty about not being there 24/7. Be there as much as you can tho. When I had to go into the hospital, I needed help. As someone else suggested and it did work for me , be there the first day when having a health care worker in.

I'm not sure if your state has this, but in Pa. we have Area Of The Aging. They have all kinds of info to help you out. They even have people their age come out and visit. Do a google search in your state for Senior Citizens and that should point you in the right direction for help.

(((HUGS))) And good Luck Sweetie
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 33
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/5/2007 6:50:41 PM
zoe thank you so much! First of all may I say.. lord help us just for having young daughters!! haha....

I appreciate your kind words and good wishes!

No one told us how hard it was going to be to watch your parents get old. What I hate the most is the look in their eyes KNOWING what they need to do... but not quite ready to do it.

I wonder to myself when Im older... will I know when its time to make the "right" decisions for myself and not to put my daughters in this position?

who knows.....

thanks so very much!!

Springazure thank you for reading posts!!
 Ann_Marie_2008
Joined: 7/7/2005
Msg: 34
view profile
History
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 9:52:36 AM
What I plan on doing is talking things over with my children and signing POA over to all 3 children while i'm able to, so that when the time comes, they have to sit down and do what we all talked about and agreed to. Nothing can be done unless they all agree.

The only thing that may change it a little, is if I met someone and re-married. That person would have to be included and we'd all have to agree.

That's my suggestion to you and you'll live a less stressful life. You won't have to worry about the future and neither will your children.
 pctreehugger
Joined: 6/17/2006
Msg: 35
view profile
History
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 11:21:18 AM
My mother is currently in an ALF as she is insulin dependent diabetic, quadruple bypass, legally blind and a breast cancer survivor. I had her with me for 15 years. I am bringing her back home for several reasons. She enjoyed the company of people her own age, but missed the daily interactions with family. Her sugar levels have been out of control, and unlike the staff at the ALF, I can argue with the doctor over her care, but they have to follow orders strictly. I felt a lot of guilt at first in placing her. In deciding to bring her back home, I told her we have to have help come in, for cleaning, healthcare, etc. If she refuses, I will place her into another facility, as I cannot do it all alone. In addition to watching her, I babysit for my two grandsons, ages 2 years and 3 months, and work full time, at home, on a computer. You have to review your parents' needs with them, yet not compromise your own life, or those of others you love. My mother and I spoke of this, and she did not realize how much stress doing everything on my own caused me. If you do place your parents into an ALF or nursing home, check it out thoroughly, and keep on top of their health. Do not visit at set times, but be random, and become familiar with the staff. Our parents need advocates, and in the case of my mother, I am hers. It is a hard decision, but one we have to make whether for our parents, or ourselves one day....
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 36
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 11:32:09 AM
Princess thank you so much for your input!!
I am all too familiar with what goes on in those nursing homes, with all the neglect and over site.

As a young girl I watched my own dad care for his parents as long as he could and then for 12 years btwn grandma and pop ( grandpa) we spent many many days and holidays with them at the nursing home.

I am trying with all my will to get them to remain at home and have someone come in . I have provided them with ALL the info.. Now I have to sit back a week or two, let it absorb and then once again go have a heart to heart with them.

Thanks so much, you all have no idea how much this thread helps!!!!

Hugs...

jj
 ndru1028
Joined: 6/24/2007
Msg: 37
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 11:51:09 AM
My thoughts in prayers are with you. We just had my mother placed in hospice care within a nursing home she has been in for 7 yrs in Modesto California, She is 87. Being in Texas it is so hard since her & I are so close. I was there over the July 4th holiday & saw her twice a day. I usually read to her from Better Homes & Gardens or Southern Living which are her favorites.
I wish there was more I could do for someone who gave the world to me...
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 38
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 12:24:41 PM
NDRU... Im very sorry to read about the Hospice, I'm sure its tortureous to be in your position.... However, there is the FMLA act which is the Family Medical Leave act where your job will be protected in case you need to care for a family member.

I clearly don't know your situation but if you can afford to take some time without pay to be with mom in her final days Im sure it will be well worth the pay you will miss.

Here is a link that can provide you with some info if this is an option. I know I use it when ever I need to run to NJ to be with mom/ her doctors/ hospital stays etc....

http://search.live.com/results.aspx?srch=106&FORM=AS6&q=FMLA

Family and Medical Leave Act
Home » Employment Law » Family and Medical Leave Act » Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) entitles a covered employee to take up to 12 weeks of leave in a 12-month period for the birth or adoption of a child, or the "serious health condition" of the employee or the employee's child, spouse, or parent. To protect this right, the FMLA prohibits an employer from interfering with an employee's attempt to exercise his leave right or retaliating against an employee for opposing practices made unlawful under the FMLA. If an employer engages in these prohibited acts, the FMLA allows any one or more employees to bring suit for damages.

The Family and Medical Leave Act covers employees who have worked for a covered employer for at least 12 months and for at least 1,250 hours during the previous 12-month period. A covered employer is any person engaged in commerce or in any industry or activity affecting commerce who employs 50 or more employees for each working day during each of 20 or more calendar workweeks in the current or preceding calendar year.

The Family and Medical Leave Act entitles employees to retain any employer-paid health benefits while using FMLA-protected leave. Upon return from FMLA leave, an employee must be restored to the employee's original job, or to an equivalent job with equivalent pay, benefits, and other terms and conditions of employment.

In addition, an employee's use of FMLA leave cannot result in the loss of any employment benefit that the employee earned or was entitled to before using FMLA leave, nor be counted against the employee under a no fault attendance policy

 ndru1028
Joined: 6/24/2007
Msg: 39
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 12:58:37 PM
Janice,

Unfortunately I am starting over in every aspect of my life. I have been battling with the SEC & a former best friend & business associate that got me pulled into his legal woes because he used our marketing group to market some illegal entities unknown to myself till I was served a subpoena.That said, I don't work I lose my apartment. I do have a niece who currently has a roommate that is moving out in May so that is my target date for now to be out West. My Mother is not terminal. Her demensia is getting worse & at 87 her vitals will eventually start to fail. They are giving her anywhere from 8 months to 2 years.One of my biggest concerns & what I think is the major reason the demensia has progressed so rapidly is that she has been on oxycontin for 7 years.
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 40
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 1:03:24 PM
oh my mistake.. Here in NYC hospice is used in the final days to make the patient comfortable with pain killers ( ie morphin) , yet not sustain life in any way.

7 years?!?!?!? I would have her medical professionals subpoened.

I wish you and your mom all the best.
 ndru1028
Joined: 6/24/2007
Msg: 41
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/6/2007 1:58:39 PM
Unfortunately because of her medical condition the pain meds are needed. She has poor cirrculation & has skin grafts on her lower legs that have not healed after 6 years.
I think in almost every state they have hospice care within nursing homes for patients who can do nothing for themselves.
 Tramp
Joined: 2/8/2007
Msg: 42
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/15/2007 6:55:53 PM
Though one.
I would say as long as they manage, let them be.
It you take their environment and habits away, they will soon get worse.

My mother is 90, put her in a retirement home; it killed us both, she felt out of place...
After one month went back home; she is doing fine.
What ever time she has left, I want her to spend it the way she pleases.
 FriendlyGuy61
Joined: 9/4/2007
Msg: 43
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/15/2007 9:34:13 PM
If I could do one thing, magically, from a thousand miles away, it would be to remove your guilt. I know how hard it is to balance what you *want* to do for your parents with what you *need* to do for yourself. They've given so much to you that you want to give back so much more to them... but, as one health care professional told me, if you burn out, from giving/caring/carrying too much then you're no good to anybody, including yourself.

So, not without some effort, there needs to be times when you realize you just have to step back and let someone else carry all the weight, even if its only for a time. Whether thats a sibling, a friend, or a paid professional, just make sure that you don't give so much that your own kids end up losing out and you end having nothing left for the others in your life. And for yourself.

There are some days when you have to have a 'day off' from your parents and make sure, if you get a chance to get away or take a break that you really don't pack along all the cares and concerns you carry on a regular basis. It's not selfish, even if it feels that way, to protect yourself from burning out.
 AgelessWonder
Joined: 4/12/2006
Msg: 44
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 10/15/2007 10:43:09 PM
Exactly ^^^^^^ Of course, I don't believe the OP is a live-in caregiver. I had my mother and took care of her 24/7. It was not easy, and I did get a break, as I hired a nurses aid to come in for a few hours a day, but over the weekends I had her all to myself. You really do have to take care of yourself or you won't be any good for the parents or your family.

Would I do it again? In a heartbeat! I wish my mom was here now.. and I don't regret any of the lost sleep or lost social life at that time.

JMO
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 45
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 3/31/2008 5:13:41 AM
update....

These past two weeks .. mom had to be placed into a long term nursing facility. ( one of the worst days of my life...) AND....

Thursday night my dad suffered a small stroke and is now in the hospital with pneumonia.

What an education I have had. All I can say at this point is that IF your parents have any kind of financial riches.... get that money OUT OF THEIR name NOW. Dont wait for the 5 yr look back and before you know it they are charging your parents 13,400 a month for a stay that could have been relatively and for the most part.. FREE!

It does not PAY to have money.

jj
 AgelessWonder
Joined: 4/12/2006
Msg: 46
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 3/31/2008 5:36:52 AM
JJ, so sorry to hear about your parents. It is very hard when they both get sick at the same time.

I understand! It was the hardest day of my life when I had to place my mom in a nursing facility too, but it was the best decision. There comes a time when we can't always take care of our parents if they are disabled physically or mentally.

Hang in there!
 Just JJ
Joined: 2/20/2007
Msg: 47
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 3/31/2008 10:35:04 AM
Awww thank you ageless... sometimes a hug is what makes the day go easier to know that someone out there can relate!

Have a great day!!

jj
 sweetluv2
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 48
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 3/31/2008 3:51:00 PM
JJ,
I've been doing a lot of thinking about my aging parents lately and wonder how my sisters and I will handle such as what you're handling now. I would definitely do some serious thinking about living quarters. Can they pay to have an area of your home accessible to them.

Possibly put their home on the market so that they can move with help to either an addition or apartment near or part of your home. I know you're busy already but I imagine so much energy is already expended on worry that having them nearer would be helpful. It sounds like they both already need your family's help very much.

Things won't get better as far as their health is concerned, but the decision making would be best if made by all concerned.

I've only read your opening post--I'm going back now to read the other replies.
 melodyxz
Joined: 11/23/2007
Msg: 49
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 3/31/2008 4:16:28 PM
Ok. I am 89 and will be 90 this August. I live alone in a two bedroom Mobile Home, two miles from town. [with two dogs] . My daughter lives two miles from me. She, also, has a bi-polar daughter with three children, and the daughter can't cope with raising the two small boys. My daughter has part physical custody of the oldest, an 8 year old girl. She right now is trying to raise the small boys, also. My daughter and son in law would like to retire in a couple of years. Their question is, will they be able to. The children need them. Ok. Let's move on. I am at the age most are in nursing homes. But I am in good health . Daughter has said all along that someday I would be living with her. Heaven forbid! Nursing home? But I will probably live to be a hundred. Suppose I do. I do have neurophy in my feet and that might just slow me down from chasing the old geezers down the halls of the nursing home. That would be a no, no, there, and that is why I don't want a nursing home. Too restrictive and I am an independent soul. This is the "sandwich" generation. Can you have a computer in the nursing home for email dating? I can imagine entertaining my date in the Lobby!!!!
 melodyxz
Joined: 11/23/2007
Msg: 50
Caring for our parents......
Posted: 3/31/2008 4:28:03 PM
I appreciated your list. I am of the generation of the parent. Will be 90 in August. I have done about all the things you listed. I also, have my daughter as Executor and have her name on my checking and savings accounts as [or] and setting it up so she can go online banking to take care of things without fuss or muss. She will have power of attorney in case I lose my marbles. I have simplified my life style, and do save for travel and trips or tours every so often. Since my income is SS and I remember my growing up on a farm in Ohio, that isn't hard to do at all. I live alone with two dogs and find activities to keep me from getting in a rut. The computer has openend up a whole new world. Writing my life story and sending them as emails from Mom to a son in Oregon. I only hope there is enough time left for me to finish everything I want to do.
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