Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

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corn18
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Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by corn18 » Thu Dec 20, 2018 10:49 am

Wanted to get some advice and maybe illuminate some unknown unknowns as we consider what our next steps are in life.

Current situation;

MIL: 78 yo. dealing with COPD and heart failure. Is living on her own, but shouldn't. Lonely and depressed. On oxygen 100% of the time. Still drives but shouldn't. Lives in MD. No debt. Plenty of money. Will NOT consider assisted living. But needs it.

Us: 52&48. moving to TX in Jan for job. 2 years from FI or we could be FI now if we really wanted to.

We are a family first kind of family (the department of redundancy dept). We have talked to MIL endlessly about her need to go to assisted living and she will not. So, instead of fighting her all the time on it, we have decided to consider how we could make her life as wonderful as possible. We floated the idea of her moving into our TX home (we bought one with an in-law suite) and she said heck no. Will not leave MD. Ok, what if we moved to MD and bought a house with an in-law suite? That was not rejected, but no commitment.

We will be with her over the holidays and I want to get a vision in place. I have no beef moving to MD and buying a house that works for all of us (just me and my wife, kids are out on their own). We could afford to buy the house and cover all expenses with just our money. But if we shared the expenses with MIL, then we would be FI and I could retire. Seems like a win-win if we share the expenses.

That's as much clarity I have at this moment. What should we be considering as we approach her about making this a reality vs. just a thought?
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bloom2708
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by bloom2708 » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:02 am

You made a gracious offer for her to live with you in TX.

If you are moving for a job, are you willing to give up that job?

I would make it clear the offer to move in with you in TX is an open ended offer and leave it at that.

For some scenarios, there is just no good solution.
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TN_Boy
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by TN_Boy » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:15 am

corn18 wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 10:49 am
Wanted to get some advice and maybe illuminate some unknown unknowns as we consider what our next steps are in life.

Current situation;

MIL: 78 yo. dealing with COPD and heart failure. Is living on her own, but shouldn't. Lonely and depressed. On oxygen 100% of the time. Still drives but shouldn't. Lives in MD. No debt. Plenty of money. Will NOT consider assisted living. But needs it.

Us: 52&48. moving to TX in Jan for job. 2 years from FI or we could be FI now if we really wanted to.

We are a family first kind of family (the department of redundancy dept). We have talked to MIL endlessly about her need to go to assisted living and she will not. So, instead of fighting her all the time on it, we have decided to consider how we could make her life as wonderful as possible. We floated the idea of her moving into our TX home (we bought one with an in-law suite) and she said heck no. Will not leave MD. Ok, what if we moved to MD and bought a house with an in-law suite? That was not rejected, but no commitment.

We will be with her over the holidays and I want to get a vision in place. I have no beef moving to MD and buying a house that works for all of us (just me and my wife, kids are out on their own). We could afford to buy the house and cover all expenses with just our money. But if we shared the expenses with MIL, then we would be FI and I could retire. Seems like a win-win if we share the expenses.

That's as much clarity I have at this moment. What should we be considering as we approach her about making this a reality vs. just a thought?
You should understand up-front the enormous time commitment (caregiving) you and spouse are volunteering to take on. Do not underestimate this.

What if she declines further? Which she almost certainly will. At her current level, it sounds like you will merely spend much/most of your free time helping her. If she declines, all of your free time and some of your non-free time.

And the two of you might not be able to travel much (including weekend trips), if that matters. Be sure and talk to friends and family who have first hand experience with extended caregiving.

Your commitment to family is admirable, but I think her refusal to move to you, forcing you to move to her AND take care of her, is not a shared set of sacrifices. (Though if she moves, you and spouse are the only ones she knows, which means all of social interaction is with you, at least initially). As another poster said, few great options.

delamer
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by delamer » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:28 am

Purely from a financial point-of-view, you need to be clear as to what happens when she dies and there is no one to share expenses.

Will your wife receive enough if an inheritance to compensate? You need copies of an up-to-date will, not promises or expectations.

And what if she develops dementia or other health conditions that require her to be institutionalized for safety reasons, or even require professional care at home 24/7? How will you deal with that financially?

You could end up in a lose/lose situation where she runs through her money and you are no longer FI.

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corn18
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by corn18 » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:36 am

delamer wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:28 am
Purely from a financial point-of-view, you need to be clear as to what happens when she dies and there is no one to share expenses.

Will your wife receive enough if an inheritance to compensate? You need copies of an up-to-date will, not promises or expectations.

And what if she develops dementia or other health conditions that require her to be institutionalized for safety reasons, or even require professional care at home 24/7? How will you deal with that financially?

You could end up in a lose/lose situation where she runs through her money and you are no longer FI.
The financial part is less cloudy right now. She has $1.8M in savings and $65k annual income from a COLA pension and SS. Wills, trust, POA's are all in place naming my wife as heir and executor. That should be plenty to handle any situation.

But one thing we had not considered is the effects of changing mental ability. What if she absolutely needs 24/7 care and she isn't willing to pay for it? We can cover that as long as she doesn't change the estate documents. The worst case scenario is she removes my wife from the estate documents and we have to cover all her care. That would suck. Is there any way to mitigate this?
Last edited by corn18 on Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
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corysold
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by corysold » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:37 am

We moved into an in-law suite arrangement a few years back.

The biggest thing to me was a relationship shift for my wife and her parents. It went from a very healthy relationship to a reversion to almost childhood dynamics if that makes sense. They didn't really see her as almost 40 with a family, but as their teenage daughter again. It's been more difficult for her, but just a strange dynamic that wasn't present before the move.

Depending on your exact set up, we have a separate in-law suite with access to the main home, it has changed our fmaily living dynamic a bit. It took a while for "our" living space to truly become respected as "ours", but even now that it has, I still think about what I'm doing on occasion before doing it. Little things like having her for dinner every night, how that changes dialogue between my wife and I and our kids (in your case, you and your spouse). Who takes her to the Dr if she needs help. Just a bunch of little things that don't get thought about until they come up.

I'm glad we made the move, it's better for my kids and our family life. My wife is coming around, but she isn't as happy, she's tolerating it as she knows it's best, but it's been hard for her.

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SquawkIdent
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by SquawkIdent » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:43 am

bloom2708 wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:02 am
You made a gracious offer for her to live with you in TX.

If you are moving for a job, are you willing to give up that job?

I would make it clear the offer to move in with you in TX is an open ended offer and leave it at that.

For some scenarios, there is just no good solution.
+1

These situations are very hard but we do what we can. You have a life too, always remember that. My main concern is the new job in TX and what happens with that. What will you do in MD? Are there similar job opportunities there? Many questions.

Good luck. :sharebeer

msk
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by msk » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:47 am

You made the offer for TX. I suspect that she expects to die very soon and simply does not see the need. My MIL was much more healthy, living alone, but she was approaching the time to go into an old people's home. Everything was arranged and she died just before moving. At age 80. My FIL was too sick to argue. He spent his last 18 years in bed at home incapacitated, with 2 care givers living on site. Do not under-estimate the commitment you are making if indeed she ever takes up your offer. Just leave your offer for TX open-ended. Reality sucks and when the situation gets very bad, she will recognize it.

delamer
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by delamer » Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:51 am

corn18 wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:36 am
delamer wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:28 am
Purely from a financial point-of-view, you need to be clear as to what happens when she dies and there is no one to share expenses.

Will your wife receive enough if an inheritance to compensate? You need copies of an up-to-date will, not promises or expectations.

And what if she develops dementia or other health conditions that require her to be institutionalized for safety reasons, or even require professional care at home 24/7? How will you deal with that financially?

You could end up in a lose/lose situation where she runs through her money and you are no longer FI.
The financial part is less cloudy right now. She has $1.8M in savings and $65k annual income from a COLA pension and SS. Wills, trust, POA's are all in place naming my wife as heir and executor. That should be plenty to handle any situation.

But one thing we had not considered is the effects of changing mental ability. What if she absolutely needs 24/7 care and she isn't willing to pay for it? We can cover that as long as she doesn't change the estate documents. The worst case scenario is she removes my wife from the estate documents and we have to cover all her care. That would suck. Is there any way to mitigate this?
Does your wife have siblings or other relatives who are receiving an inheritance or could try to claim one? That can complicate things.

Maybe this is a situation where moving your MIL’s assets into a trust controlled by your wife would be a good option.

One other thought — I know of a family where a man ended up living with his MIL when his wife died prematurely. Or what if you make the move to Maryland and your MIL dies 3 months later?

The odds are very low, but families are disrupted every day by random events.

badger42
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by badger42 » Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:13 pm

She has the money for professional live-in help.

Even if she won't spend it and you pay for professional live-in help, that' way cheaper than a divorce.

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Cranberry » Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:28 pm

In my state, and at the assisted living facility where my family member lived, employees were not allowed to touch oxygen equipment. It was considered a prescription drug. If an employee noticed that the oxygen line had slipped, they were not even supposed to reposition it. Neither were privately hired CNAs. Only hospice could handle the equipment. Any resident who couldn't handle the oxygen alone would be judged unsafe, and the facility would insist on a move to a nursing home. Is it possible that your MIL has already investigated these details?
Where I am, around the clock CNAs from a service run about $30/hr...

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by c1over8 » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:05 pm

corn18 wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:36 am
delamer wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:28 am
Will your wife receive enough if an inheritance to compensate? You need copies of an up-to-date will, not promises or expectations.
The financial part is less cloudy right now. She has $1.8M in savings and $65k annual income from a COLA pension and SS. Wills, trust, POA's are all in place naming my wife as heir and executor. That should be plenty to handle any situation.

But one thing we had not considered is the effects of changing mental ability. What if she absolutely needs 24/7 care and she isn't willing to pay for it? We can cover that as long as she doesn't change the estate documents. The worst case scenario is she removes my wife from the estate documents and we have to cover all her care. That would suck. Is there any way to mitigate this?
A will is nothing more than an expectancy because MIL can change it at any time. Regardless of whether your wife has other siblings who may interfere, MIL may decide to leave her assets to the pool boy or a charity, or even get scammed out of most of her assets. When MIL changes her will, she may not notify you and your wife and you both will think the old will still stands until you are surprised at MIL's death. Also what do the documents say happens to what would have been your wife's share if she predeceases you, although possible, it probably doesn't pass to you. An irrevocable trust would ensure your wife's inheritance or a contractual agreement about the care you are providing could provide more certainty (though you may still have to sue or pursue a debtor's claim to enforce your contract if it provides for payment at/after MIL's death).

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Cruise » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:32 pm

OP: You and your spouse are very caring. You folks are also in a no-win situation: Either you give up your lives for MIL or you feel guilt for letting her waste away in her current situation.

My use of the phrase "give up your lives for MIL" was not accidental. You will be entering a situation of enormous stress and that can have a tremendous impact on your own health. Now, if your MIL seemed like a reasonable person, perhaps the stress might be manageable. Your description of her makes her sound like she is very inflexible. Guess who will be wrapped around her every desire going forward?

My sibs and I were able to get my resistant father in an assisted living situation only after numerous falls, hospitalizations, and need to go into a rehab facility. We "forced" him to fly to a rehab facility nearby one sib, knowing full well (and planning for it) that he would end up in an assisted living facility nearby. As we expected, once he experienced the facility, he grew comfortable with it, and gave permission to sell his residence. Perhaps you can wait for the right opportunity with your MIL, and have her admitted to a rehab facility nearby where you live.

Good luck with your MIL and protecting your own health. You only have one of each.

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by GAAP » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:36 pm

You might want to look for a place with a detached MIL quarters (AKA Granny Flat, or ADU). She can feel more independent, but have immediate help and family access as needed.
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Ybsybs
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Ybsybs » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:42 pm

Please don't do this to yourselves.

If you do it, I hope it works out for you.

My personal experience with eldercare is that it gets more and more draining and more and more thankless as time goes on and the elder's health and capacity for gratitude diminishes.

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Shallowpockets » Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:58 pm

Ybsybs wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:42 pm
Please don't do this to yourselves.

If you do it, I hope it works out for you.

My personal experience with eldercare is that it gets more and more draining and more and more thankless as time goes on and the elder's health and capacity for gratitude diminishes.
+1
+2
+3

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Mlm
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Mlm » Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:08 pm

I'm sorry that you and your MIL are in this situation. Have you actually toured Assisted Living Facilities in her area or yours? I have found that they are pretty good at "selling" reluctant people on their services. If she is lonely and depressed she might like what she sees.

If she is dead set on staying in her present home then upending your life and moving near her isn't really going to change anything in the long term.

Probably the best you can do is to let her know how concerned you are for her safety because she is so isolated where she is. Is she unreasonably stubborn or just slow to accept her situation?

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by RickBoglehead » Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:31 pm

Ybsybs wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:42 pm
Please don't do this to yourselves.

My personal experience with eldercare is that it gets more and more draining and more and more thankless as time goes on and the elder's health and capacity for gratitude diminishes.
This ^^^ I second it, third it, and fourth it.

Here's some harsh statements, that some may not agree with.

It is the responsibility of people to act responsibly, until such time as the lack the mental ability to do so. In other words, your MIL needs to accept responsibility for herself and act accordingly. If she is in need of additional care, and she resists, and she is of sound mind, then she's made her bed.

If she is unsafe to drive, then you should either take her keys or file a report with the State of Maryland. I didn't see a form on their site, many states allow you to report someone anonymously, and then they will investigate and if necessary test the individual. http://www.mva.maryland.gov/safety/olde ... -tools.htm Years ago my Grandfather passed out, went through some bushes, and hurt no one. They pulled his license, he used his pull and got it back. They took his keys, he got new ones made. So we stole his car, he reported it stolen, police knew we had taken it and ignored him.

The OP offered his mother assistance, and she has repeatedly refused him. Ding, ding, ding - Danger Will Robinson! You cannot make her do what she doesn't want to do. Period. (I noted COPD, was she a smoker, even though she knew she shouldn't smoke)?

My in-laws refused any assistance. Doctor told them, "you are very unsafe". Family told them "you are very unsafe". They agreed to in-home help 3 days a week for 4 hours, and fired them 2 weeks later. Down the road, FIL, the healthy one, had issues. Eventually he said "find us a place to live". So, we did (independent living with assistance available), but MIL continued to act out, cause issues, dial 911 for ambulance to waste doctors and hospital's time (and risk lives of ambulance drivers rushing to help someone not needing help, and being unavailable for a valid response), while FIL watched and did nothing. After 4 months of this, when MIL was in hospital again for nothing, we took steps to put her into assisted living and declared unable to make her own decisions and potentially causing harm to others by her decisions. FIL stayed in independent living for 2 more years, then moved to the same assisted living (but in a separate building so he wouldn't enable her). They both lived out their lives there.

Do NOT commit your personal finances to this situation, when your MIL has $1.8 million of her money. If necessary, you'll need to get the courts to step in and make your wife her guardian. You said she has POA documents and when the time comes, doctors will declare your MIL unable to make good decisions and it will kick in and your wife will make the decisions and have financial POA to spend the money.

OP - there are professional organizations to help you through this. Parents become children all over again. At first, dementia and Alzheimers has nothing to do with it, it's just someone fighting the fact that they need more assistance as they age. Eventually, illness kicks in and things must be done. It's the responsibility of the grown adult children to know when to step in and make the hard decisions to keep people safe. It stinks, but that's the way it is.

We lived through this for 4 1/2 years. Until they were both in assisted living, everytime the phone rang it startled us, wondering "what now"? The level of tension, stress, and impact on YOUR health will be huge. It's a no-win situation.

Seek help in the process, don't try to reason through it yourself.
Last edited by RickBoglehead on Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Katietsu
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Katietsu » Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:38 pm

Is your wife the only child? Where do you live now?

As a family first person, I would not be moving to Texas for a job at this time unless I had no other option. You said you are very close to FI and retirement, are leaving your current location anyway, and don’t mind living in MD. So, I would be moving to MD. I think the best exact arrangement, eg living together vs nearby, is not clear.

However, for those of us who are family first, being 1500 miles away from a elderly parent with serious health conditions would be hell. It sounds like that right now your MIL is just able to keep things together on her own. A small worsening of her condition is going to change that. Then what? I suspect things are already closer to this turning point than you are aware.

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by ChrisC » Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:32 pm

corn18 wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 10:49 am
We have talked to MIL endlessly about her need to go to assisted living and she will not. So, instead of fighting her all the time on it, we have decided to consider how we could make her life as wonderful as possible. We floated the idea of her moving into our TX home (we bought one with an in-law suite) and she said heck no. Will not leave MD. Ok, what if we moved to MD and bought a house with an in-law suite? That was not rejected, but no commitment.
This reminds me of our situation with my MIL, who fiercely valued her independence to the point of abject stubborness-- until she became helpless. One of our regrets is that the last few years of her life would have likely been so much better had she faced down her pride.

With us, at age 85, we bought an upscale condo for MIL to live -- a 15 minute walk from the condo we purchased for ourselves in Arlington, Virginia, in a walkable neighborhood with public transportation, medical facilities, green space, and grocery and drug stores a mere 50 yards away. MIL was quite able to care for herself as she was always mentally alert and very mobile until several months before she passed. But a few months before closing on the purchase, she told us she was having none of that -- this was even after she had picked out the cabinet finishings, appliances, and flooring for this new unit a number of months before. We became involuntary landlords as a result of her decision to stay put in a home, which she purchased 20 years before to be close to us after her husband had died.

After this debacle, we later decided to move from Virginia to North Carolina. We actually found a house in NC in which we could all age in place, including MIL. And MIL at 94 expressed an interest in moving down with us and even toured our house before we bought it. She kept on telling us she needed to downsize, declutter and then she would be ready; this went on until we just gave up with asking her about when she would be ready to move. Unfortunately, we didn't realize until much later that part of the reason, in retrospect, she appeared to be reluctant to move in with us was that she was embarrassed over having incontinence issues. Well, finally, we had to make a medical emergency visit when she was 97, when her health had deteriorated rapidly and my BIL who had been looking after her could no longer watch her. (We had to move BIL into our house to care for him as his MS was rendering him in need of assistant living.) She was later forced to move in with us, and then it was really too late, as the extent of the care she needed was simply to great for us to handle. She spent 2 months living with us and then we found an assisted living/care home for her where lived for an additional 3 months -- we had expected her to live to 100 and she passed a few months beyond 98.

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by TN_Boy » Thu Dec 20, 2018 7:53 pm

corn18 wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:36 am
delamer wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:28 am
Purely from a financial point-of-view, you need to be clear as to what happens when she dies and there is no one to share expenses.

Will your wife receive enough if an inheritance to compensate? You need copies of an up-to-date will, not promises or expectations.

And what if she develops dementia or other health conditions that require her to be institutionalized for safety reasons, or even require professional care at home 24/7? How will you deal with that financially?

You could end up in a lose/lose situation where she runs through her money and you are no longer FI.
The financial part is less cloudy right now. She has $1.8M in savings and $65k annual income from a COLA pension and SS. Wills, trust, POA's are all in place naming my wife as heir and executor. That should be plenty to handle any situation.

But one thing we had not considered is the effects of changing mental ability. What if she absolutely needs 24/7 care and she isn't willing to pay for it? We can cover that as long as she doesn't change the estate documents. The worst case scenario is she removes my wife from the estate documents and we have to cover all her care. That would suck. Is there any way to mitigate this?
She is in pretty good shape financially. If she needs 24x7 care, well, that gets a lot more expensive. A nursing home is probably running around 100k or more. She could cover the less expensive assisted living with the cash flow from her pension and SS. Is she living in a house now? If so, how much is the house worth?

With her income and savings, you could have home health come into her home (or a new place she moves to, possibly even your house). But if she really needs assistance 24x7, home health coming into a residence is going to be well over 100k. (Think $20 to $25 per hour).

I don't know how much you should worry about her needing 24x7 care and not be willing to pay. Your reaction in that situation should, I surmise, be to talk with any local government agencies that work with elderly people, and frankly, work to get her declared incompetent. If she needs care, has money, and won't use it, I would think you could get that done. No way you should pay anything if she can. But, I haven't been in that particular tarpit.

Note that if she moves into with you, and starts needs lots of help, she might or might not let you bring in home health to offload you -- elders tend to insist (perhaps understandably) family help them instead of strangers. Think about that scenario a bit before you go that route.

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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Rwsawbones » Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:27 pm

I am a 77 year old practicing geriatrician. The posters have identified most of the problems. An issue that can be problematic is early and developing dementia. Wanting to stay in the same place is natural for most people but people with dementia show greater tenacity in desire to be in their accustomed location. COPD is a major contributor to dementia. It may be easier to work with your MIL and her attorney to do a living trust with you and your spouse as trustees. This is best done with your MIL in the soundest mental status as possible. Since we cannot go back in time now is the time to put this in place. She should execute a health care proxy (in some states is referred to as a durable power of attorney for health care) appointing you, or your spouse or other appropriate person as the proxy to make medical decisions when she cannot. The proxy would be invoked when her attending physician determines that she cannot make her own medical decisions. This can be temporary or continuing. It is important that the person identified as proxy know her values and goals. It is critical that the document itself be readily available. (It is for this reason that physicians like to have the document scanned into their patient’s chart since they may not be otherwise available). There are also forms known as MOLST or POLST forms ( medical orders for life sustaining treatment or patients orders for life sustaining treatment). You can read these on line. They are an opportunity for the person usually in consultation with the persons physician to state desires regarding resuscitation, hospitalization, artificial nutrition and dialysis. The forms are printed on brightly colored paper (in Ma bright pink) and can be taped onto one’s refrigerator which after looking at the patient is the first place paramedics look. If your MIL agrees it is a good idea to accompany her on medical visits and per part of the conversation. Patients tend to give their physician a somewhat rosy view of their functioning at home. Your input can be invaluable. Physicians deal daily with the situation you face in that we have great concern and worry for the safety and comfort of patients.

About 10 years ago I priced the cost of 24 hour care at home and found that it was twice the cost of skilled nursing

Care of caregivers is critical since caregiving is physically and mentally exhausting. Hopefully it is not financially draining as well

Kennedy
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Kennedy » Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:52 pm

Good luck, and consider carefully what you might be getting yourself into.
Last edited by Kennedy on Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Watty
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Watty » Thu Dec 20, 2018 10:06 pm

One thing that has not been mentioned is that she should have one of the emergency alert buttons that she can press to get help if she needs it, and she should wear it 24 hours a day even in the shower. My mom insisted on staying in her house and was often alone. She had to use it twice.

Even if she moves in with you she should have one of those.

I am don't know much about the current options but the last time I looked at them a lot of the problems people reported were because they did not understand the contracts. Be sure to understand the contract and check with several companies until you find one that is reasonable. One thing to look at is what happens if the person moves into assisted living or dies.

Prudence
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Prudence » Thu Dec 20, 2018 10:25 pm

Sounds like she will be a danger to herself. So, what happens when this comes to a head? You may need to consider obtaining legal guardianship and then making decisions for her. She will hate you for it but sometimes there is no other way. Good luck.

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corn18
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by corn18 » Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:19 am

I got some great advice on another forum that I wanted to share:
ivinsfan;2160217 wrote:Just so many red flags flying in your post.

Is your MIL mentally incompetent? If not her desire is to live out her days in her own home. You might not think it's the best option for her, but it's what she wants. She doesn't want to move, she doesn't want assisted living, she's not sure she even wants to live in the same house as you do. You might call it stubborn but perhaps she see you as the stubborn bossy ones. And who are you to override someone's decision about how she wants to live the rest of her life? I'm speaking as someone who has lived this and came to realize that taking over control of someone's life because you know what's better for them in your mind is just a form of trying to control something that's uncontrollable. You see her a ungrateful when in fact she isn't ready to give up control of her life and in fact a lot of her dignity.

My DH Uncle at 92 is going thru this right now and insisted on being discharged from the NH with the full awareness that a slip and fall at home, which has a good change of happening could kill him. He wants to be home and doesn't care that he might have longer life in the NH, he's ready to accept whatever happens. He sons freaked out and they had huge arguments over his decision that could very well linger and cast a shadow over whatever days he does have remaining.

If your MIL is mentally compromised you have other issues to contend with. In that case see an elder care attorney about the pitfalls of caring for someone in a compromised state and protecting yourself from misuse of funds issues.

Let me say you are not just leaving her there to die. Honoring her wishes and letting her have a say about the rest of her life is one final tribute you can give her.


You're putting too much pressure on yourself by saying you are a "family first kind of family" what does that even mean? You will have failed some internal test if you simply let your MIL's life play out the way she wants it to?

My last bit of advice would be to tell you to love her and respect her wishes and tell her if she ever wants to change her circumstances your family will be there with bells on to make that happen. Don't make it you vs her and perhaps when she thinks it her call she will be willing to open her mind to life improvements.

Enjoy your holiday with her and don't even bring this up. Make it about family and Christmas just dial back and see what happens.
My response:

Wow. Thank you for your candor. We have definitely been imprinting our desires onto the situation. But my MIL is very sound of mind and knows what she wants. We should honor that. And we will.

It's funny because as a business leader, I am always emphasizing servant leadership. I tell my direct reports that they should start every meeting with "How can I help", not "This is what we are going to do". I should follow my own advice.

We will start our talk with DMIL with "How can we help" and then just listen. And help her do what she wants.

Thank you for the clarity.
Don't do something, just stand there!

Cruise
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by Cruise » Fri Dec 21, 2018 12:56 pm

I’m speechless that you chose to share your thanks to a poster from another forum, yet said squat to all the BHs who tried to help you out. Happy Holidays.

ChrisC
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by ChrisC » Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:33 pm

corn18 wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:19 am
I got some great advice on another forum that I wanted to share:
ivinsfan;2160217 wrote:Just so many red flags flying in your post.

Is your MIL mentally incompetent? If not her desire is to live out her days in her own home. You might not think it's the best option for her, but it's what she wants. She doesn't want to move, she doesn't want assisted living, she's not sure she even wants to live in the same house as you do. You might call it stubborn but perhaps she see you as the stubborn bossy ones. And who are you to override someone's decision about how she wants to live the rest of her life? I'm speaking as someone who has lived this and came to realize that taking over control of someone's life because you know what's better for them in your mind is just a form of trying to control something that's uncontrollable. You see her a ungrateful when in fact she isn't ready to give up control of her life and in fact a lot of her dignity.

My DH Uncle at 92 is going thru this right now and insisted on being discharged from the NH with the full awareness that a slip and fall at home, which has a good change of happening could kill him. He wants to be home and doesn't care that he might have longer life in the NH, he's ready to accept whatever happens. He sons freaked out and they had huge arguments over his decision that could very well linger and cast a shadow over whatever days he does have remaining.

If your MIL is mentally compromised you have other issues to contend with. In that case see an elder care attorney about the pitfalls of caring for someone in a compromised state and protecting yourself from misuse of funds issues.

Let me say you are not just leaving her there to die. Honoring her wishes and letting her have a say about the rest of her life is one final tribute you can give her.


You're putting too much pressure on yourself by saying you are a "family first kind of family" what does that even mean? You will have failed some internal test if you simply let your MIL's life play out the way she wants it to?

My last bit of advice would be to tell you to love her and respect her wishes and tell her if she ever wants to change her circumstances your family will be there with bells on to make that happen. Don't make it you vs her and perhaps when she thinks it her call she will be willing to open her mind to life improvements.

Enjoy your holiday with her and don't even bring this up. Make it about family and Christmas just dial back and see what happens.
My response:

Wow. Thank you for your candor. We have definitely been imprinting our desires onto the situation. But my MIL is very sound of mind and knows what she wants. We should honor that. And we will.

It's funny because as a business leader, I am always emphasizing servant leadership. I tell my direct reports that they should start every meeting with "How can I help", not "This is what we are going to do". I should follow my own advice.

We will start our talk with DMIL with "How can we help" and then just listen. And help her do what she wants.

Thank you for the clarity.
Well, I think this is sound advice especially since your MIL is only 78. I thought your concerns were a bit premature, as she's not a major fall risk and seems to be doing fine, nothwithstanding your views that life could be better for her in assisted living. What does her physican recommend? My mother was 79 and had some home care, when our family and her physician after some surgery, decided that she could not live on her own and needed sklilled nursing care -- she had cardiac issues, was a major fall risk, and was beginning major cognitive decline with the onset of dementia. On the other hand, my MIL, who we wished would have lived with us her last few years, didn't become a major fall risk until she was 97, continued to drive her car throughout her life, was mentally sharp, and became totally incontinent at the time we made a medical intervention for her at 97.

Clearly it was my MIL's choice to live independently until she couldn't -- it would have been nice for us if she had settled many of her affairs for her next transition in advance of us taking them over the last 6 months of her life. We had to scramble around and run around like chickens with no heads to get things settled for her. In some respects, she still thought of us as children (at ages 66 and 64) and that she was still the only adult in the room.

delamer
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by delamer » Fri Dec 21, 2018 2:00 pm

ChrisC wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:33 pm
corn18 wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:19 am
I got some great advice on another forum that I wanted to share:
ivinsfan;2160217 wrote:Just so many red flags flying in your post.

Is your MIL mentally incompetent? If not her desire is to live out her days in her own home. You might not think it's the best option for her, but it's what she wants. She doesn't want to move, she doesn't want assisted living, she's not sure she even wants to live in the same house as you do. You might call it stubborn but perhaps she see you as the stubborn bossy ones. And who are you to override someone's decision about how she wants to live the rest of her life? I'm speaking as someone who has lived this and came to realize that taking over control of someone's life because you know what's better for them in your mind is just a form of trying to control something that's uncontrollable. You see her a ungrateful when in fact she isn't ready to give up control of her life and in fact a lot of her dignity.

My DH Uncle at 92 is going thru this right now and insisted on being discharged from the NH with the full awareness that a slip and fall at home, which has a good change of happening could kill him. He wants to be home and doesn't care that he might have longer life in the NH, he's ready to accept whatever happens. He sons freaked out and they had huge arguments over his decision that could very well linger and cast a shadow over whatever days he does have remaining.

If your MIL is mentally compromised you have other issues to contend with. In that case see an elder care attorney about the pitfalls of caring for someone in a compromised state and protecting yourself from misuse of funds issues.

Let me say you are not just leaving her there to die. Honoring her wishes and letting her have a say about the rest of her life is one final tribute you can give her.


You're putting too much pressure on yourself by saying you are a "family first kind of family" what does that even mean? You will have failed some internal test if you simply let your MIL's life play out the way she wants it to?

My last bit of advice would be to tell you to love her and respect her wishes and tell her if she ever wants to change her circumstances your family will be there with bells on to make that happen. Don't make it you vs her and perhaps when she thinks it her call she will be willing to open her mind to life improvements.

Enjoy your holiday with her and don't even bring this up. Make it about family and Christmas just dial back and see what happens.
My response:

Wow. Thank you for your candor. We have definitely been imprinting our desires onto the situation. But my MIL is very sound of mind and knows what she wants. We should honor that. And we will.

It's funny because as a business leader, I am always emphasizing servant leadership. I tell my direct reports that they should start every meeting with "How can I help", not "This is what we are going to do". I should follow my own advice.

We will start our talk with DMIL with "How can we help" and then just listen. And help her do what she wants.

Thank you for the clarity.
Well, I think this is sound advice especially since your MIL is only 78. I thought your concerns were a bit premature, as she's not a major fall risk and seems to be doing fine, nothwithstanding your views that life could be better for her in assisted living. What does her physican recommend? My mother was 79 and had some home care, when our family and her physician after some surgery, decided that she could not live on her own and needed sklilled nursing care -- she had cardiac issues, was a major fall risk, and was beginning major cognitive decline with the onset of dementia. On the other hand, my MIL, who we wished would have lived with us her last few years, didn't become a major fall risk until she was 97, continued to drive her car throughout her life, was mentally sharp, and became totally incontinent at the time we made a medical intervention for her at 97.

Clearly it was my MIL's choice to live independently until she couldn't -- it would have been nice for us if she had settled many of her affairs for her next transition in advance of us taking them over the last 6 months of her life. We had to scramble around and run around like chickens with no heads to get things settled for her. In some respects, she still thought of us as children (at ages 66 and 64) and that she was still the only adult in the room.
While I understand the motivation for the advice (from the other forum) and can see the value, ChrisC makes an important point.

Does your MIL get to live her life exactly as she wants, while you and your wife get to scramble around and make it work for her?

This has to be a two-way street. MIL gets some help to hopefully live her life out at home, but you and your wife don’t have to totally upend yours in order to provide that for her.

Honoring your elders is a good thing, but elders have an obligation to their family to not make unreasonable demands (as long as they are not cognitively impaired).

TN_Boy
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by TN_Boy » Fri Dec 21, 2018 3:52 pm

delamer wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 2:00 pm
ChrisC wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:33 pm
corn18 wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:19 am
I got some great advice on another forum that I wanted to share:
ivinsfan;2160217 wrote:Just so many red flags flying in your post.

Is your MIL mentally incompetent? If not her desire is to live out her days in her own home. You might not think it's the best option for her, but it's what she wants. She doesn't want to move, she doesn't want assisted living, she's not sure she even wants to live in the same house as you do. You might call it stubborn but perhaps she see you as the stubborn bossy ones. And who are you to override someone's decision about how she wants to live the rest of her life? I'm speaking as someone who has lived this and came to realize that taking over control of someone's life because you know what's better for them in your mind is just a form of trying to control something that's uncontrollable. You see her a ungrateful when in fact she isn't ready to give up control of her life and in fact a lot of her dignity.

My DH Uncle at 92 is going thru this right now and insisted on being discharged from the NH with the full awareness that a slip and fall at home, which has a good change of happening could kill him. He wants to be home and doesn't care that he might have longer life in the NH, he's ready to accept whatever happens. He sons freaked out and they had huge arguments over his decision that could very well linger and cast a shadow over whatever days he does have remaining.

If your MIL is mentally compromised you have other issues to contend with. In that case see an elder care attorney about the pitfalls of caring for someone in a compromised state and protecting yourself from misuse of funds issues.

Let me say you are not just leaving her there to die. Honoring her wishes and letting her have a say about the rest of her life is one final tribute you can give her.


You're putting too much pressure on yourself by saying you are a "family first kind of family" what does that even mean? You will have failed some internal test if you simply let your MIL's life play out the way she wants it to?

My last bit of advice would be to tell you to love her and respect her wishes and tell her if she ever wants to change her circumstances your family will be there with bells on to make that happen. Don't make it you vs her and perhaps when she thinks it her call she will be willing to open her mind to life improvements.

Enjoy your holiday with her and don't even bring this up. Make it about family and Christmas just dial back and see what happens.
My response:

Wow. Thank you for your candor. We have definitely been imprinting our desires onto the situation. But my MIL is very sound of mind and knows what she wants. We should honor that. And we will.

It's funny because as a business leader, I am always emphasizing servant leadership. I tell my direct reports that they should start every meeting with "How can I help", not "This is what we are going to do". I should follow my own advice.

We will start our talk with DMIL with "How can we help" and then just listen. And help her do what she wants.

Thank you for the clarity.
Well, I think this is sound advice especially since your MIL is only 78. I thought your concerns were a bit premature, as she's not a major fall risk and seems to be doing fine, nothwithstanding your views that life could be better for her in assisted living. What does her physican recommend? My mother was 79 and had some home care, when our family and her physician after some surgery, decided that she could not live on her own and needed sklilled nursing care -- she had cardiac issues, was a major fall risk, and was beginning major cognitive decline with the onset of dementia. On the other hand, my MIL, who we wished would have lived with us her last few years, didn't become a major fall risk until she was 97, continued to drive her car throughout her life, was mentally sharp, and became totally incontinent at the time we made a medical intervention for her at 97.

Clearly it was my MIL's choice to live independently until she couldn't -- it would have been nice for us if she had settled many of her affairs for her next transition in advance of us taking them over the last 6 months of her life. We had to scramble around and run around like chickens with no heads to get things settled for her. In some respects, she still thought of us as children (at ages 66 and 64) and that she was still the only adult in the room.
While I understand the motivation for the advice (from the other forum) and can see the value, ChrisC makes an important point.

Does your MIL get to live her life exactly as she wants, while you and your wife get to scramble around and make it work for her?

This has to be a two-way street. MIL gets some help to hopefully live her life out at home, but you and your wife don’t have to totally upend yours in order to provide that for her.

Honoring your elders is a good thing, but elders have an obligation to their family to not make unreasonable demands (as long as they are not cognitively impaired).
Delamer has it exactly right. If MIL cannot live by herself, without numerous interventions from friends and family (and if she shouldn't be driving then she clearly needs help), then she is living her life AND EVERYBODY ELSE'S LIFE the way MIL wants to. This is often neither fair nor practical. The right choice may not be obvious, and if obvious maybe not easy, but I don't believe an elder has the right to run everybody else ragged so they can get their way.

The other thing to remember is that "frail elders" (a phrase I saw in a book on helping elderly parents that I found very descriptive) generally get worse, not better. If things are marginal now, it is magical thinking to believe that it will be okay a year from now.

oldlongbeard
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by oldlongbeard » Fri Dec 21, 2018 7:09 pm

Shallowpockets wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:58 pm
Ybsybs wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 1:42 pm
Please don't do this to yourselves.

If you do it, I hope it works out for you.

My personal experience with eldercare is that it gets more and more draining and more and more thankless as time goes on and the elder's health and capacity for gratitude diminishes.
+1
+2
+3
+4

SrGrumpy
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by SrGrumpy » Fri Dec 21, 2018 7:46 pm

corn18 wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:19 am

It's funny because as a business leader, I am always emphasizing servant leadership.
Huh?

gmc4h232
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by gmc4h232 » Fri Dec 21, 2018 7:54 pm

corysold wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:37 am
The biggest thing to me was a relationship shift for my wife and her parents. It went from a very healthy relationship to a reversion to almost childhood dynamics if that makes sense. They didn't really see her as almost 40 with a family, but as their teenage daughter again. It's been more difficult for her, but just a strange dynamic that wasn't present before the move.
This is happening to us now that we have the inlaws' first grandchild. It's kind of sickening to me to watch and I hate it.

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corn18
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by corn18 » Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:13 pm

SrGrumpy wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 7:46 pm
corn18 wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 11:19 am

It's funny because as a business leader, I am always emphasizing servant leadership.
Huh?
Look it up.
Don't do something, just stand there!

prairieman
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Re: Considering living with Mother in law (MIL)

Post by prairieman » Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:19 pm

Having been through the experience, we had good times and very bad times. In hind sight, I’d still go through with it (living with MIL). Going through the slow dying and, ultimately, death experience, isn’t easy no matter how you slice it. But I could not live with myself had we not made every effort to provide my wife’s mother with every confidence that we had her back as she was going through her difficult end-of-life experience. She had our backs all the while before it.
That said, she did not go gracefully, and there came a time when we had no choice but to tell her that she could not return to our house unless we knew we could provide the care level she needed. She was in denial, but she eventually believed us, and agreed to stay at the assisted living center.
When I think back, I try to remember the many very good times - and forget the period near the end when she was often times no longer herself.

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