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Difficult situation with parent and family

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Hi everyone,
I am new here but appreciate the posts I have read so far and the resources.
I have been caring for my parent for several years now, in my own home including keeping them safe during Covid. It is reaching a point where a care home needs to be considered. Not because the parent is losing capacity totally but because it's a combination of the disease and our own family needs reaching breaking point sometime soon.

I have been dealing with a lot of guilt over this but now need to do the right thing for us which is still hard. I know I have completelty changed their health for example from when they were on their own and were no longer coping. I am managing all finances, all bills and they do not need to handle a single thing. I do believe they appreciate it but I rarely hear it, and understandibly my partner feels it's now time, esp as our child is about to enter a new stage in their own life and will need alot of our attention.

Another complication is a sibling who is in a delicate mental state, low on income, and now becoming quite intent on seeming to 'get' what they can as I have taken more control over the parents finances (who for example at the ATM locks the pin, or hands purse to cashiers etc). Parent doens't believe there is any ill harm and wishes to help but the repeated loans (a large one unpaid) have all been since diagnosis and there is also mingling of finances in an account which parent did not know about but now does. In my gatekeeping for the future (ie when a carehome is needed and they look into finances) I am being accused of all sorts because sibling access to cash is harder. I never expected to be in this position and the sibling does not help me in any way, or parent very much, plus suffers from anger management which is frustrating and adds even more pressure to a stressful situation. I simply feel when the cash runs out, there will be questions about loans and cash withdrawals that could affect state funding. Hence trying to get things clean now but it's causing agression and ill feeling and I truly believe they feel entitled to cash. They do not bear any of the responsibility for care nor financial management etc, so it would be me picking up the pieces if you see what I mean.

I suppose I would like to ask for any thoughts, tips on how to get through this with what I have left of my sanity. Partner is completely on board and sees parent not really caring. Sometimes I have wanted to hand all control to the sibling but I know this is not the right thing. Once a care home is found, pressure will be removed somehow but the rest will still be there. I do not want to make it worse but I would dearly like the fact sibling walks her to ATMs to get cash out to stop, because it's putting them potentially in worse positions and I feel helpless.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
If you are your mum's attorney then you must take full control and prevent your mum from loaning or giving money away to anyone, this will be considered deliberate deprivation of assets when it comes to local authority funding should that be required. It sounds as if you need to cancel her credit and debit cards. End any mingling of finances now. You must manage your mother's money in her best interests and nobody else's.

Of course if you are not her attorney you need to read up on power of attorney and deputyship as a priority.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Hi yes I have POA. I am struggling, it's causing alot of stress, had I not put a lock on the acc more than £100 would have been taken on the last visit to ATM. I have put everything in writing in emails which has caused more stress because sibling doesn't want everything in black and white. It's being seen by mum as on one side squabbling, on the other she doesn't know why they are saying she owes money and is trusting plus feels sorry for their situation. Asks me lots of questions though and has said it's just loans, as she knows she doesn't owe anything. As she still handles cash widhdrawals etc and is very much 'normal' to others, what can I do? I feel like canceling the card will be the final straw. I have suggested many times she only uses contactless and as few cash withdrawals as poss, esp as she doesn't handle money well anymore.
 

Dunroamin

Registered User
May 5, 2019
259
0
UK
Hello @T1000 . I realise you are all over the place emotionally, and feeling stressed. The bottom line is that as POA you are responsible. Read the post by @MartinWL again. He explains it much better than I can.

If you are your mum's attorney then you must take full control and prevent your mum from loaning or giving money away to anyone, this will be considered deliberate deprivation of assets when it comes to local authority funding should that be required. It sounds as if you need to cancel her credit and debit cards. End any mingling of finances now. You must manage your mother's money in her best interests and nobody else's.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
18,483
0
South coast
I know we dont like curtailing peoples independence, but your mum is no longer able to manage her finances. Its no use keep telling her what to do - she wont remember and she is getting very anxious about her finances. My mum was constantly drawing money out of her account because she was worried that she had none. You have to take control for both your sakes. You may find that she copes with just being given small amounts of cash better than cards.

Go to the bank and book an appointment with the bank manager so that you can register your POA and talk to him/her about strategies you can use with your mums finances. My mums bank manager was really very helpful about this and explained what could, and what couldnt, be done. Cancel her credit and debit card (though she might like to keep them if she thinks she can still use them and removing them would cause problems) and sort out her accounts. You might like to set up internet banking so that you can keep an eye on everything (dont tell your sibling you have done this)
 

MaNaAk

Registered User
Jun 19, 2016
7,576
0
Essex
Has your sibling got a partner that they are living because if so they should be helping that sibling as you have enough on your plate? Also do you have all the benefits such as Attendance Allowance, Carers Allowance, etc.

You are doing a brilliant job and your parents are proud of you.

Welcome to the forum and hugs

MaNaAk
 

Hazara8

Registered User
Apr 6, 2015
655
0
Hi everyone,
I am new here but appreciate the posts I have read so far and the resources.
I have been caring for my parent for several years now, in my own home including keeping them safe during Covid. It is reaching a point where a care home needs to be considered. Not because the parent is losing capacity totally but because it's a combination of the disease and our own family needs reaching breaking point sometime soon.

I have been dealing with a lot of guilt over this but now need to do the right thing for us which is still hard. I know I have completelty changed their health for example from when they were on their own and were no longer coping. I am managing all finances, all bills and they do not need to handle a single thing. I do believe they appreciate it but I rarely hear it, and understandibly my partner feels it's now time, esp as our child is about to enter a new stage in their own life and will need alot of our attention.

Another complication is a sibling who is in a delicate mental state, low on income, and now becoming quite intent on seeming to 'get' what they can as I have taken more control over the parents finances (who for example at the ATM locks the pin, or hands purse to cashiers etc). Parent doens't believe there is any ill harm and wishes to help but the repeated loans (a large one unpaid) have all been since diagnosis and there is also mingling of finances in an account which parent did not know about but now does. In my gatekeeping for the future (ie when a carehome is needed and they look into finances) I am being accused of all sorts because sibling access to cash is harder. I never expected to be in this position and the sibling does not help me in any way, or parent very much, plus suffers from anger management which is frustrating and adds even more pressure to a stressful situation. I simply feel when the cash runs out, there will be questions about loans and cash withdrawals that could affect state funding. Hence trying to get things clean now but it's causing agression and ill feeling and I truly believe they feel entitled to cash. They do not bear any of the responsibility for care nor financial management etc, so it would be me picking up the pieces if you see what I mean.

I suppose I would like to ask for any thoughts, tips on how to get through this with what I have left of my sanity. Partner is completely on board and sees parent not really caring. Sometimes I have wanted to hand all control to the sibling but I know this is not the right thing. Once a care home is found, pressure will be removed somehow but the rest will still be there. I do not want to make it worse but I would dearly like the fact sibling walks her to ATMs to get cash out to stop, because it's putting them potentially in worse positions and I feel helpless.
Some very constructive posts here in respect of POA and communicating your predicament with the Bank et al. Unfortunately it is a running theme that siblings often have no notion whatsoever about what the care/ responsibility which is a fundamental in dementia care with a parent ( s) entails. When the time comes to look at professional care ( Care Home) then there will be other elements which require close attention and these can challenge both energy and emotions combined . You do not need peripheral pressures from family members to compound what is already one of the most demanding challenges in a life, your life. Dementia ravages loved ones and in a parent this can literally be life changing for the one who is acting as Carer. I experienced elements of misunderstanding or just plain bland ignorance within the family and occasionally wished l could take those concerned by the scruff of their necks and thrust them into the " actuality " of what Care truly entails and how it affects profoundly your overall mental and physical state. But of course you don't do that - because your whole time is taken up in that Care. No, you should glean the practicable advice so kindly offered here by long term members and focus on "best interests " for your parents, a credo which all good Care Homes embrace from the first day that a new resident enters that facility.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Thanks everyone, have been dealing with more emails today on this to see if I can progress anything. Bank already has POA etc, it's just she likes having some cash and obv wanted to help with yet another loan. Since I have put pressure on, it's now been agreed today that the loan will be repayed over a few months, though the claim had been it was 'owed' to sibling. But the account co-mingling is another headache, is not in this country, and sibling has POA there and keen to keep it as is hiding funds there, plus her pension accrues there monthly. I hope to make progress on this too.

Attendance allowance I sorted ASAP once we had the diagnosis here which helps, as she has a carer 2 hours per week from that. I am doing everything else, and I guess it's taking a toll. Said sibling simply has no clue what it is like for us doing this 24/7, I tried to communicate this but as I said there are anger management issues. Problem is mum has never held this person accountable for anything, so they feel entitled to cash and feel like they 'work' and so cannot care for her. Yet I manage, and I work from home, plus everything else in family life.

I can't talk to mum on it really, nor other family as don't want to add burden, and we are the only stable space she has aside from a care home. But that will be so costly, we have been trying to help as much as poss as we have a room, though I think this Summer we need to do something. Esp as she is able to go out on her own still, at the beginning of her journey in her own mind, I think a care home shouldn't be considered the End, but I think she sees it that way and told her carer 'I will wait until they kick me out I suppose' It should not be like that, hubby thinks she will not make any effort to go, so the pressure falls on us to 'force' her out.

I hope my ramblings make sense, bit of a day and just have an hour to myself at the mo to put thoughts to this thread.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Some very constructive posts here in respect of POA and communicating your predicament with the Bank et al. Unfortunately it is a running theme that siblings often have no notion whatsoever about what the care/ responsibility which is a fundamental in dementia care with a parent ( s) entails. When the time comes to look at professional care ( Care Home) then there will be other elements which require close attention and these can challenge both energy and emotions combined . You do not need peripheral pressures from family members to compound what is already one of the most demanding challenges in a life, your life. Dementia ravages loved ones and in a parent this can literally be life changing for the one who is acting as Carer. I experienced elements of misunderstanding or just plain bland ignorance within the family and occasionally wished l could take those concerned by the scruff of their necks and thrust them into the " actuality " of what Care truly entails and how it affects profoundly your overall mental and physical state. But of course you don't do that - because your whole time is taken up in that Care. No, you should glean the practicable advice so kindly offered here by long term members and focus on "best interests " for your parents, a credo which all good Care Homes embrace from the first day that a new resident enters that facility.
Sorry just figuring out how to add quotes - Yes exactly, I just want to shake them and explain I have eleventy billion other things to do, and could really use some support on many items she needs. Not just coming over and having a cup of tea with her and considering it job done. Sometimes it's just emotional support, which the family has given this sibling no end of for months on end now and yet seems to not come back to any of us. Yet I am the sensible, polite one, who does the right thing, they all know this and I am somehow still being 'mean' for enforcing these rules to protect her best interests with no real thanks even from her.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Thankyou Sarasa, thankfully there is very little left in the other country but I am trying to force the issue to resolve things asap (within reason and practical terms), and have had to put things in writing last few months so I have a paper trail. There was much upset at formalising it, I think because it crystalises what has been done. Sadly neother of them see an issue with it. Another sibling does, but seems to want to let us resolve things and hasn't got the headspace or time, I don't blame them as such but wish they and parent would simply be clear given they know who has the stable history and who does not if that makes sense. There is no way I am doing it out of meaness but I do see them both in a fragile situation, not being able to see the overal picture or caring much even when it's made clear to them.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
3,208
0
High Peak
I believe you can be made her appointee with the Dept of Work & Pensions. In which case you could then make sure her pension is paid into an account you control and not the overseas one the sibilng controls.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Hi it's a foreign pension, so I don't really know how to get it transferred to here. Sibling has POA out there but has stated once I raised the issue that they do not have time to handle the transfer, and that I should handle it instead. I know they are frustrated that I have not left well alone, and that they are losing control of accessing finances.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
@T1000 Do write to the pension provider, enclosing a copy of the POA, instructing the provider which account the pension should be paid to. It must be an account in the sole name of the person, but under your control.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Hi thanks Martin so write to the pension provider abroad (government), and a copy of the POA with info on the UK account yes? That should be fine. I wonder if the POA active over there supercedes this though
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
Awful night sleep, more emails from sibling but this time completely attacking me, which I am becoming used to. They are trying to distract and accuse, it's saddening and I can't do anything but keep asking for the same info/actions they need to take in writing so there's a record. I am so glad I had the POA put in place as otherwise right now might be worse I imagine. At the moment they are trying to force an expense which is not needed, and I suspect will do it and then are stating she needs to cover all related costs also. At the moment they have been told not to incur that spend but I have no idea what recourse I have if they claim they had 'already' done it. So stressful and imagine there's no support. I have heard of safeguarding teams, does this apply? If so what do I need?
 

jugglingmum

Registered User
Jan 5, 2014
6,309
0
Chester
These sort of situations occur regularly on here, and normally a permanent falling out with sibling results.

As POA you are the only one that can authorise and pay expenses and if sibling pays out and asks to recover you can refuse. You are legally obliged to act in your mum's best interests and only spend money on her needs. If expenditure is made which you don't agree with you don't have to refund it but the likely fallout will be ugly.

The overseas POA does cloud the waters somewhat.

As for safeguarding, legally this exists as a recourse but trying to get action taken is a minefield and may cause more issues than it solves for everyone including your ability to manage your mum's affairs.

I think you need to get the other sibling to understand the legality of the position and support you seems the only option.

From what you've said your sibling has clearly been living off handouts from your mum and this shouldn't happen but sibling is used to it and is going to fight, so any fallout will be ugly.
 

Whisperer

Registered User
Mar 27, 2017
318
0
Southern England
Dear @T1000

I have read through this thread and there has been a lot of helpful advice given. However the lovely people here are perhaps a little shy sometimes about spelling out some brutal points to consider, one especially. My comments from here onwards are meant with the best of intentions regarding you and your beloved mother.

1) You need to do a harsh analysis in your own mind about your relationship with your sibling. You are doing a wonderful caring job, the sibling is frankly part of the problem not the solution. This far and no further on loans, or claims your parents owe monies without real proof they do. Have you considered your sibling is a grown adult, but behaving with a child like sense of entitlement. Has the sibling considered the financial loss to your mother when it comes to care home costs most likely needing to be paid in the future?

You sound a lovely person, doing a very tough caring role. Time to bluntly tell the sibling the nature of your caring role, the very likely need to have to pay for care in the future. Ask where their concern is for mother’s welfare. I am sorry to say but your sibling really needs to wake up and smell the coffee. Do not fret over upsetting them, your role is caring for and protecting your mum as well as you can. Whilst caring for my own mum my two siblings were rocks of support to me, sometimes a little slow understanding how the illness was progressing. Looking back that was my fault as I took on the caring role fully, trying to allow mum to live as well as could be with gathering dementia, enjoying her time with them as largely as it always had been. Only as things got worse did they inevitably see dementia in its dreadful full colours. But they never failed to help me, particularly during the long year of COVID shielding before mum died. Your circumstances are very different and I suggest kindly a time has come when lines must be drawn, truth told, etc. As POA it goes with the role. Sorry that might sound harsh, but it is said with yours and your mum’s best interests in mind. When dementia arises it can bring the best out in family members, but also unfortunately the worst.

2) You indicate your mum may well go into a care home later this year. Let me try and save you some emotional pain. You have helped your lovely mum stay independent over recent years, which has involved sacrifices for you, your partner and child. That cost cannot go on being increasingly paid. The strains and emotional stresses will become to much. I cared for my mum for six years but it was a simple choice. I loved her but most importantly I had no partner or children to be concerned about. My choice, my responsibility and I was previlidged to care for my wonderful mum.

You have other demands to consider which complicates matters, but only up to a point. You have said yourself a line in the sand is approaching. Now here is some well meaning tough love. When your mum goes into care, no guilt feelings are allowed. Sadness yes, but not guilt. You have done really well getting this far. Your mum will be safe, her growing needs met. You can visit and return to the role of a loving, not care specific daughter. You will look out for her ongoing financial interests, that all is well in the care home, but day to day caring will end. You slipped into the caring role, now you can step back to a degree, relax knowing your mum is being looked after and as I say embrace being a daughter more fully again. Also get back to being a full time partner and mother. Please understand I am not criticising your current efforts on that front. Your caring role, reading between the lines, is straining you to breaking point. Tired, stressed, etc, other roles in your life are suffering through no fault of your own. There is a book written to guide carers called “The 36 hour day”. The title says it all.

Finally if ever you have moments of guilty feelings ask a simple question. Who cared for your mum, made sacrifices, fought her corner, etc, you or your sibling. Who demonstrated love as opposed to a sense of entitlement. Deep down you know the answers. Hold onto them. I close in hoping my words are accepted as direct but well meaning advice. I had bleak moments in my caring role, all carers do.

We need to stick up for each other, offer advice and support,etc, and this forum is great at doing that. It got me through many issues in my caring role, somewhere there was always a positive and helpful voice. When mum died I walked away for a while. TBH I was emotionally, mentally and physically very badly run down. I have decided in recent months to drop by from time to time. Whenever I see a carer struggling with the demands of the role, I will try and offer positive advice. Others helped me, now it is my turn where I can.

Hope my words can help in the coming months. My very best wishes for your future. Remember an old saying said to me by another carer in a care support group. You are part of the solution not the problem. In years to come you can look in the mirror and remember you did your very best for your mum and family. I suggest your sibling will find that rather hard to do.
 

T1000

Registered User
Feb 3, 2022
108
0
These sort of situations occur regularly on here, and normally a permanent falling out with sibling results.

As POA you are the only one that can authorise and pay expenses and if sibling pays out and asks to recover you can refuse. You are legally obliged to act in your mum's best interests and only spend money on her needs. If expenditure is made which you don't agree with you don't have to refund it but the likely fallout will be ugly.

The overseas POA does cloud the waters somewhat.

As for safeguarding, legally this exists as a recourse but trying to get action taken is a minefield and may cause more issues than it solves for everyone including your ability to manage your mum's affairs.

I think you need to get the other sibling to understand the legality of the position and support you seems the only option.

From what you've said your sibling has clearly been living off handouts from your mum and this shouldn't happen but sibling is used to it and is going to fight, so any fallout will be ugly.
Thank you so much, the sibling of emails has ended for the time being, as I have stated clearly the cost should not be incurred yet and they do not like this as it would suit them. Mum is confused by it somewhat but in the end we are trying to help sibling have even less on their plate, and they use me as someone to blame when life for various reasons is not working for them. As a family we have supported them, but this withdrawal of financial support has caused upset and drawing lines is needed but with much agression. My sanity is still there but just. The vitriol I have experienced today is exhausting. Financial entitlement is a very key part of this indeed and several loans were taken since her diagnosis. Unfortunately, it's fallen to me to put a stop to it, no one else will stand up even though we have all experienced the aggression and behaviousr in the past.