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Step-father .... angry and uncooperative

Millymop

New member
Jul 28, 2021
6
0
I have read through lots of posts, but can't find exactly the help I'm looking for.
My situation is that my mum was diagnosed with dementia 2 years ago. She lives with her husband, my step-father, and my siblings live abroad.
In 2017 they both drew up new wills and Power of Attorney documents, and I was named as her representative should the need arise. Whilst she still lives at home, with him caring for her, he has resented the fact that I registered the PoA - done originally as he wanted to sell her house, renovate his house and live in it.
He is threatening and abusive when I visit, and only doesn't shout at me when I take my daughter with me. I have resorted to recording my visits on my phone as I genuinely don't know what he may do as he seems totally irrational in behaviour, despite many many attempts to explain why I registered the PoA.
Mum's mental capacity has obviously declined greatly over this time, and whilst she seems physically well, would be very vulnerable if left alone for any length of time.
Up till now, I have not interfered with her finances, although I do have concerns about the set up. I called into her bank last week to see what the procedure would be to establish control of her account, and although I only asked for advice, they have frozen her account stating that they have to follow protocol.
So now I have a furious step-father who insists he can manage my mums affairs, she's cross too as she only is fuelled by his conversations. He will not recognise that I was nominated her representative, and now I feel the few fractious visits I had, will be more scarce and fraught with tension. I have called with the police to see what steps I can take to see my mum in safety, but I'm not keen on pursuing a Safety Order as I don't want to to make things even worse (his adult children are very much in his side).
What a mess, mum is 80 and I only want to try to make the most of her remaining years.
 

SewHappy

Registered User
Feb 3, 2019
26
0
I know how all that feels. Mum lived her husband, my stepfather, when she was diagnosed with dementia. He was adamant he could manage when clearly he couldn't. Before mum and he married (back in the 60's) he lived in a house that was dirty and he was a bit of a hoarder. Without mum to help manage it all got very bad again and quite frankly mum was living in filth, mess and they were both very dirty. His own daughter cleared off a very long time ago and never stayed in touch in any substantial way so it was all down to me. I didn't have LPA and he wouldn't consider them dealing with this before it got too late.

The problem is he wouldn't take practical help or advice from me, the medical system that diagnosed mum, charities they were referred to or anyone. He was rude and abusive to mum's sister and nephew so they wouldn't visit anymore . He also upset and attacked my husband while he was in our house - that was his last visit to us.

So, I used to visit mum once a week for an hour or two and put up with all his bad behaviour so at least I could see mum. She knew things weren't right but if I gently broached anything around helping, cleaning, taking mum out for a while he went nuts, then we'd argue and mum would cry and tell us to stop. Once he threw me out of the house and told me not to come back. A few days letter he received a letter he didn't understand so he had to call me - mum was the admin side of their relationship other than money. At least by biting my tongue I got to take a deep breath and enter the house but oh I hated each visit, the stink, the mess. I was just beginning to think I needed to report the situation to Social Services but was worried about the problems that would cause too.

My stepfather had a few medical issues of his own and things only started to resolve when he had some medical incidents resulting in paramedics being called to him - mum still remembered 999 and the address. Eventually the paramedics reported it as a safeguarding issue and all hell broke loose around him with officials. Finally I had people on my side and he was losing wriggle room - he got really angry about that and it was all my fault too. However he did have to agree to an action plan.

We were implementing it with him still loudly protesting when he had a fall, banged his head and died a few days later. I was just in time to get mum to sign an LPA at the solicitors to be sure she had capacity. A few years down the line she is now happy in a loving care home and doing more than sitting in a filthy chair in filthy clothes watching TV all day.

So, the only way things started to get better for me and mum was when officials got involved. However even though I didn't call them it was still all my fault. I'm sorry that this isn't the solution you were looking for but it is something similar that happened to me.
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
3,524
0
Hi @Millymop and welcome to Dementia Talking Point. I'm sorry that your problems with your step-father and your mother's care brought you here, but this is a great place for support and advice.
Your situation sounds quite complex so I think talking it through with the Support Line would be a good idea. You can contact them on 0333 150 3456 or email dementia.connect@alzheimers.org.uk.
Do you think your step-father might also have dementia, as his reactions do seem a bit extreme. The sort of irrational behaviour he is displaying could be a sign. It might be a good idea if you could try and talk to his children about the care of both of them. My husband and his siblings very nearly fell out irrevocably over the care of his mother, having the step-parent situation must make it even harder. If you could talk through your concerns it might help. Do make sure you are safe when you visit, having a charged phone with you and a means of escape. Your step-father may not be physically violent, but his behaviour could escalate.
I'm sure others will be along soon with their suggestions.
 

SewHappy

Registered User
Feb 3, 2019
26
0
Hi @Millymop and welcome to Dementia Talking Point. I'm sorry that your problems with your step-father and your mother's care brought you here, but this is a great place for support and advice.
Your situation sounds quite complex so I think talking it through with the Support Line would be a good idea. You can contact them on 0333 150 3456 or email dementia.connect@alzheimers.org.uk.
Do you think your step-father might also have dementia, as his reactions do seem a bit extreme. The sort of irrational behaviour he is displaying could be a sign. It might be a good idea if you could try and talk to his children about the care of both of them. My husband and his siblings very nearly fell out irrevocably over the care of his mother, having the step-parent situation must make it even harder. If you could talk through your concerns it might help. Do make sure you are safe when you visit, having a charged phone with you and a means of escape. Your step-father may not be physically violent, but his behaviour could escalate.
I'm sure others will be along soon with their suggestions.
It's worth checking him for dementia too. However my step-father was checked during one of his hospital visits and he didn't have it. He was just irrational, scared and out of depth.
 
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Millymop

New member
Jul 28, 2021
6
0
Thanks for your replies.
Since registering the PoA, communication in any rational form has totally broken down with his children too. They only listen to what he says and will have nothing to do with me. I get the impression they feel 'poor dad, doing all he can for X , without help). I want nothing more than to be included in her care, but I get sworn and shouted at at any visit, so trying to establish a team-effort has been impossible. He is in his mid-80's with health issues of his own, so I know he needs support. I had thought about dementia on his part, but tbh, I think mentally he is as sharp as a pin.
It's tricky.
 

Dunroamin

Registered User
May 5, 2019
117
0
UK
They may be concerned that you will spend all 'their' money (inheritance.) I saw this sort of scenario many times when I was still working.
 

Millymop

New member
Jul 28, 2021
6
0
Funny enough, I'm concerned he will move it into his and his children's accounts. From what I know of the situation, she is the one paying the bulk of their spending.
 

Millymop

New member
Jul 28, 2021
6
0
@SewHappy Your situation certainly seemed very similar to mine. Any time I visit, I have
my phone in my hand so I can press record anytime he comes near. Really nice to be called a f...... c... by your step father (among many other choice names) as he shakes his walking stick in my face! And my mum of course doesn't remember that his behaviour is so rude and bullying.
 

SewHappy

Registered User
Feb 3, 2019
26
0
@SewHappy Your situation certainly seemed very similar to mine. Any time I visit, I have
my phone in my hand so I can press record anytime he comes near. Really nice to be called a f...... c... by your step father (among many other choice names) as he shakes his walking stick in my face! And my mum of course doesn't remember that his behaviour is so rude and bullying.
It's an awful situation. I'm a couple of years down the line but writing it down brought back the stressful feelings I had then.

Seeing mum tomorrow in her lovely home. I'm sorry I can only empathise as I don't have any suggestions to help you.
 

TNJJ

Registered User
May 7, 2019
2,206
0
cornwall
Thanks for your replies.
Since registering the PoA, communication in any rational form has totally broken down with his children too. They only listen to what he says and will have nothing to do with me. I get the impression they feel 'poor dad, doing all he can for X , without help). I want nothing more than to be included in her care, but I get sworn and shouted at at any visit, so trying to establish a team-effort has been impossible. He is in his mid-80's with health issues of his own, so I know he needs support. I had thought about dementia on his part, but tbh, I think mentally he is as sharp as a pin.
It's tricky.
As you have LPOA of attorney he shouldn’t be able to move her money. I have LPOA for my dad and pay all his bills etc through online banking which I have set up. Dad has no debit card or credit card as he has lost capacity.
 

Millymop

New member
Jul 28, 2021
6
0
I registered the PoA in order to stop the sale of our family home, I didn't want to make matters worse by impacting on daily banking too. But certain issues have meant I've had to take control of this too, with great opposition from step-father. He's not happy.
 

TNJJ

Registered User
May 7, 2019
2,206
0
cornwall
I registered the PoA in order to stop the sale of our family home, I didn't want to make matters worse by impacting on daily banking too. But certain issues have meant I've had to take control of this too, with great opposition from step-father. He's not happy.
He probably isn’t. But at the end of the day you are protecting your mum..