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10-18-18 07:00 AM
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Xeogaming Forums - Sunset Waterfall - Living with a demented old woman | | Thread closed
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Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 08-20-10 08:40 PM Link
My 89-year-old grandmother has been living with us for the past few months.

She's getting too old to be left alone, and she's had several accidents in her home. She's left the stove on and gone to bed, she's fallen down a few times. She's blind in one eye and hard of hearing (although she seems to be able to hear pretty well from time to time). Since she's also originally from the Philippines, sometimes she'll insist on speaking to me in Tagalog (which I'm far from fluent in).

Since my dad is self-employed he's able to be around most of the time, but he works elsewhere on Tuesdays and Fridays. Since she has a caretaker who comes in Tuesdays and Wednesdays, I've been having to stay home on Fridays and make sure she's OK.

Things have been all right most of the time. She tends to just sit in one of the chairs in the living room and sleep. Or she'll sit in her room. I've tried taking her out, but she's unable to walk more than a few feet at a time. If I have a car, I take her to the library, but since my car is also currently my dad's and he's in the next county with it on Fridays, we usually sit at home.

She's now HEAVILY dependent on her cane.

I've been noticing things have been getting worse this week.

A couple nights ago, my dad cooked fish for everyone. She usually loves fish. She sat through the meal chewing it, and then either spitting it out onto her plate or onto the floor and grabbed for her crackers that were in a container on the table.

Sometimes she goes on about hearing people singing loudly. There's no one there.

My dad found her crying yesterday. She wouldn't tell him why.

She's suddenly incontinent, and urinates everywhere and blames it on our cats. I figure incontinence is typical for an elderly person, though.

But just now, she was screaming up the stairs for me. As I rushed down she started shouting about all of the doors being closed and looked as though she was about to cry. She was also really dismayed about the curtains being down on the French doors in the back.

I walked around and opened all the doors. She then went out the front door and started screaming over and over about how my father was trying to kill her.

...

I called my mom, and she said this is part of her "sickness" and that I should just ignore it.

My grandmother's house is a couple neighborhoods over. It's about a mile away. She can't stay there because her neighbors are really nosy. If she was there alone, they would call the cops and try to have her put into a home or something. They had started saying we were being negligent when she was living on her own. They were constantly calling the city for different reasons (oil streaks on the driveway, trashcans too close together, lawn not mowed regularly, etc) to try and have them remove her from her home.

My grandmother really wants to live in her own home.

She was briefly living with my aunt. When my aunt had to go to the hospital, she insisted that if she kept my grandmother there, it would kill her. So we took her full time.

With her living here, though, it's given this aunt the opportunity to raid my grandmother's house for furniture, tools, knick-knacks, wall decorations, and other things she wants. She's saying that my grandmother gave her these things and that anything that was given before she dies does not need to be split up as part of the inheritance.

When my grandfather died 14 years ago, the family was ripped to shreds over who got what, even though my grandmother was alive and well. My aunts were fighting over how they deserved money, my uncle sort of sat back and tried to play neutral, and my parents said everything should stay with my grandmother.

To this day, these aunts have been pressuring my grandmother to move out of the house so they can sell it and keep the money. Doesn't have to be split up if it's a gift, right?

In the meantime, while being upset about visiting my grandmother's house and finding so much just taken, I find myself watching her scream bloody murder about my dad into the open air.

I just don't know any more. We have our own set of nosy neighbors. The lesbians next door would LOVE to report something like this to the police. They've reported us for less (a fan in the window, people standing on the roof during a party, etc).

I'm tired. I'm weary. I'm starting school on Monday and I still have to watch her on Fridays. Things just keep getting worse when it comes to this situation.

Anyway... my parents just got home. I'm going to talk with them now.


(Last edited by Rogue on 08-20-10 09:23 PM)
Xeoman

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Since: 08-14-04
From: 255

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Posted on 08-20-10 08:54 PM Link
So you and your family are against putting her in a home or something though? It sounds like she could definitely use full attention but things will always keep the family busy.

I've had some older death's in the family over the last few years and it's pretty tough and a lot of work. Hope you guys can get through this the best way possible.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 08-20-10 09:19 PM Link
Originally posted by Xeus
So you and your family are against putting her in a home or something though?

I really don't know any more.

I mean, I worked at a convalescent home/hospital when I was in high school and vowed never to put my parents in one since. It was really depressing environment. The nurses had a betting pool over who was going to die next and they frequently ignored the patients. Every single day patients were coming up to me asking when their family was coming for them. Many of them looked heartbroken all the time.

Those who weren't catatonic were begging for cigarettes as their only comfort, which some of the nurses gave them. Most were demented and left in their rooms.

I figure if she stays with us at least she's among family.

For the last couple months I've been going out and getting her fried chicken because she really likes it. It's always Church's chicken thigh and biscuits, every day.

She's also on medication.

I just talked with my dad and apparently she went to bed before they could give her the rest of her meds last night.

Right after our talk, he went next door to see if the lesbians heard anything and to explain what's going on.


(Last edited by Rogue on 08-20-10 09:27 PM)
Elara

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Since: 08-15-04
From: Ferelden

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Posted on 08-21-10 04:00 AM Link
1) Who is the executor of her estate? If you have to end up putting her in some kind of hospice or home then unless it's the aunts they can't touch a dime of money from the house unless the executor allows it. If there is none, get something drawn up.

2) The home you worked at before sounds absolutely horrible but they are not all like that. I would say look around, since it really does seem like you guys are going to have to seriously look at that option soon.

3) Since the incontinence and other really odd stuff started, has she been to a doctor?

4) Unless the aunt that stole stuff can provide written proof that your grandmother gave it to her, then you should report her for theft and elderly abuse.
Kyoku kun

Phan Phan
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Since: 06-19-06
From: Northern California

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Posted on 08-21-10 07:32 PM Link
Having gone through something relatively similar with my grandmother, and my mom being a caregiver and having had several for my grandfather, I know what you're going through.

There's a point where it becomes beyond manageable. Though there are some really horrible elder homes..etc, there are some really wonderful ones as well. They really try and make it as friendly as possible.

I don't know about your money situation, but another option would be to hire 24 hour live in care. That's what we did for my grandfather and it was absolute heaven. The caregivers, from Fiji, were beyond amazing. He was able to live in his own house and live his life. I really recommend it if you have the money.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 08-22-10 04:33 AM Link
I'm not sure about the executor part. As far as I know she and my grandfather had a trust with my mom, her brother and two sisters as trustees. I don't know anything other than that in terms of how the estate will be legally handled on her passing.

The incontinence has been medically checked out. She needs adult diapers. There isn't much else for it, I guess.

Since she has a caretaker come in on certain days of the week, it does free us up when it comes to worrying about who's going to be with her while we're at work or school. The problem is this isn't the caretaker's only gig. She's almost entirely full-time (except for those two days, obviously) elsewhere.

Actually she's a whole 'nother set of drama. She wants to be paid in cash, and was asking my grandmother to pay her despite the fact that my mom was paying her. So she was collecting double.



Last night, while everything was all settled down and we all sat down to dinner it was nice. Since my grandmother seems to have problems chewing, after dinner, all five of us got in the car and went to the store to see about getting softer things for her to eat, maybe get her some Ensure or something.

While we were eating, though, my mom mentioned that Lola (Filipino word for grandma) has paranoia and other issues. She's seen doctors and that's what all her meds are for, along with vitamins and supplements.

My mom made sure to give her all her medication and there wasn't any sort of eruption today.

Apparently the night before last, when my grandmother missed some of her meds because she had fallen asleep early, my mom was on the phone with one of my aunts. My mom mentioned Lola being asleep and questioning whether or not to wake her to make her take her medication. My aunt insisted that it was best not to wake her up. And then that whole my-dad's-trying-to-kill-her tirade happened.

My mom confronted her about that, actually. Lola said she was joking.

Mom has her degree in sociology and her job is mainly in job coaching mentally disabled people (mostly autistic). She was explaining to me that people who are mentally ill will sometimes throw a fit about the smallest things and you have to find out what it is, fix it, and usually things will go smoother. I suppose, in the case of yesterday it was the fact that the curtains were down on the back doors.
Elara

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Since: 08-15-04
From: Ferelden

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Posted on 08-22-10 12:54 PM Link
Well at least it is calming down. Though I really think that you guys should look into finding another caretaker since this one is obviously shady.

But yeah, the executor thing... not as bad but something similar is going on with my grandma, with my aunts kinda doing the vulture circle now and then. My dad is executor of the estate, so we don't worry too much... other that for the shitstorm that will happen when they learn how little they are getting because of how they act.


(Last edited by Elara on 08-22-10 12:57 PM)
Rogue
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Since: 08-17-04

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Posted on 08-22-10 02:10 PM Link
This is how stupidly complex the situation with the caretaker has gotten. My uncle's wife is a nurse and hired this woman who is one of her friends to be Lola's caretaker and at a lower price than one would usually find one.

I've mentioned to my parents that we need to find someone else, but it would come off as a slight against my uncle and his wife if we did.

So I'm completely with you on this one. I just have no control over the situation.

Sonya, the caretaker, does her job pretty well, otherwise. She bathes my grandmother, takes her out, gets her hair and nails done, and my grandmother seems to take to her.


I should explain the she "said she was joking" part. She tends to say things like that. She never really liked my dad. And in the past she would make comments to me while no one was around about how bad she thinks my dad is. And yet, in her eyes I can do no wrong. Well, I can do plenty actually (she's always telling me to adjust my clothes or wear other things because she doesn't like how they make me look, etc).

I happened to be the one who lowered the curtains a few days ago, which caused her to freak out and claim my dad was trying to kill her (with the heat). When my mom explained this to her, suddenly she says, "Oh okay, you can leave them down." This caused my mom to facepalm while I laughed (as this came after my mom explained the paranoia thing as well as my grandmother being horribly bothered by little things).

Anyway, whenever things happen around Lola, she's like a little kid, saying things so she won't get in trouble. My mom: "Were you just outside screaming that someone's trying to kill you?" Lola: "Nuh-uh!!" Mom: "Yes you were. Christine saw you." Lola: "I was joking!" Mom: "Did you pee on that chair?" Lola: "Nuh-uh, it was your cats!"

I guess I just feel as I mentioned above that I have no control over the situation other than when I watch her on Fridays, or other days if the situation calls for it. Most of the talks between my mom and her siblings are conducted over the phone, in my parents room, before they go to bed. I guess I'm just left wondering what's going on all the time and left in the dark, and the situation is wearing my mind thin from time to time.
Bitmap

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Since: 09-05-04
From: His Laughin' Place

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Posted on 08-22-10 07:53 PM Link
This reminds me of my Grandmother before she passed away.

Mind you, I love her to death. But before she had altimeters she was a total bitch to me and completely neglected me. She would send birthday cards to my sister and would not acknowledge that I was even part of the family. Quite frankly, she was upset that I was born male. Kinda fucked up I know, but eventually she came around, and started talking to me more and more.

Then altimeters kicked in and she became a completely different person. My mother and her two sisters had to take care of her while they all lived together in the same home. There were times where the situations were much like yours rogue. Except I am not going to try and compare problems. What I can say is that there were instances where she would start screaming and throwing things at me at the sight of me. She thought I was some kinda demon incarnate. In her calm "Normal" days, there have been times where she would stand outside with no clothes on wondering where her car was or something. Granted, it's not a sight I like to see, but while I was visiting my mom there were times I would walk out with blankets and try to get her back inside. Hell, I had to call my aunts a couple of times because she would try to hurt herself if I tried to help her back inside. I was afraid I was going to be in jail or something if she would have "Believed" that I hurt her.

Then came the time when everyone decided to put her into a home. She had the best money could buy thanks to her deceased husband being in the military and all. And she was not happy. But at least she was safe, very well fed, up until she passed away. She had a pacemaker, but that was not the cause of her death. It was just her time to go.

So now, onto my thoughts on this: but before I continue...Does she have altimeters?
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 08-25-10 01:11 AM Link
After finally asking my parents what Lola has, it appears to be Alzheimer's.

I figured as much.

Things have been all right so far this week, although she's definitely been running my mom ragged.
Elara

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Since: 08-15-04
From: Ferelden

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Posted on 08-25-10 08:34 AM Link
Such a horrible disease. I have watched it destroy so many people, and it seems sadder and more painful each time. Don't they have some new meds that are supposed to stop its progression or something?
Xeios

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Since: 08-16-04

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Posted on 08-26-10 09:46 PM Link
That is horrible Rogue

I hope you can deal with this problem as best as anyone can, with devotion and love. It may be tough, but the challenge of it will make you feel better in the end. It will make you feel better to know that you've done something to comfort her in the end.

I used to take help take care of someone with Alzheimer's, it was terribly difficult to do. Having the gentleman not know who I was, even though I had visited him every week for over a year. It also had it's moments, it taught me more patience, and it taught me to enjoy broken records. I could probably recant from heart one of his favorite war stories.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 08-27-10 03:13 PM Link
Thanks, guys. While it's comforting that I'm not alone, it's very unfortunate that this disease is affecting so many.

When we were all trying to sit down together for dinner, my grandmother was doing something in her room. My mom kept trying to get her to come to the table and eventually told me to bring her over. After I kept telling her things like food was getting cold and she could do what she was doing later, she suddenly said, "I'm tired of this. I just want to die," in a very serious tone. When she got to the dinner table and sat next to my mom, it was like she never said anything.

I took her to the doctor today. He refilled her prescriptions and prescribed more meds. She has pills for dementia, and now some for arthritis. She was really, REALLY upset when he said there was no way she can get better and not need a cane any more. In fact, she might need to start using a walker soon.

My dad requested the doctor test and her and write up a letter saying she's of sound mind and able to sign legal documents. The doctor started testing her by asking things like who's the president, what's the date, and so on. I kinda laughed when she said the president is "Ebona." That wasn't meant to sound as it did. She just always has trouble with names. She couldn't remember the exact date, but she did know it's August and when the doc asked what year it was she said, "2-1-1-0." I think she's just confused.

The doctor recommended a neurologist (who's conveniently also a lawyer), fasting blood tests, x-rays, and a physical since they don't have those up to date.
Elara

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Since: 08-15-04
From: Ferelden

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Posted on 08-29-10 12:51 PM Link
Neurologist and a lawyer? That's a double whammy if I ever heard one.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 10-29-10 02:29 AM Link
The situation just keeps getting worse and worse and, frankly, more exhausting. Every morning I wake up to my mother and grandmother fighting. The last couple days have been the worst.

My grandmother's caretaker is really doing a shitty job of actually taking care of her. Part of the deal was to bathe her, she's not doing that. She brings animals and kids while she's watching my grandmother and spends more time attending to them. She's leaving my grandmother alone and unattended when she wants to go out. She's taking things without asking for them. Now she's asking my grandmother how much she gets from social security, how much she has in the bank, how much the house is worth, and if she can get into the garage. Since she's my uncle's wife's friend and she assumes my uncle has control of my grandmother's assets, she's really abusing this.

We're speculating that she wants to try to move her family into the house or get more money out of my grandmother. A couple days ago, my mom packed my grandmother a lunch and the caretaker ate it and didn't give my grandmother anything for lunch.

She also keeps getting angry with my dad when she flat-out asks him for money for things and he says no. She asked him for $20 so she could buy deodorant. We shop at Costco and have like 5 sticks of deodorant under each sink. My dad goes and gets her one and she still demands the money.

So Tuesday night, we're sitting down to dinner and my parents are talking about firing Sonya. My grandmother is freaking out and going on about how she wants to move back into her own house and retain Sonya. Since my aunt cleaned out the house and took everything to hers, there's no way she could really live there without trying to get everything back. She and Sonya go there on the days Sonya watches her, but it's still not much for sustaining a person.

I think my grandmother sees Sonya as a friend and companion.

I really feel sorry for my mom. She fights with my grandmother in the morning, goes to work, and then has to take care of her (and usually end up arguing with her) when she gets home.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 12-26-10 11:15 PM Link
So... things are continuing to suck.

When my parents went to South America for a couple weeks, earlier this month, my aunt flew down from the Bay Area to take care of my grandmother. Since I wouldn't have the time to watch Lola 24/7 since I was still going to class at the time and was taking finals the second week they were gone, it was more to help me out.

My dad told Sonya she wouldn't be needed those two weeks, and when she threatened to quit if my dad didn't pay her anyway, he just told her to go ahead and do so. Since we didn't like her much anyway, we were actually kind of relieved.

When they got back from their trip and my aunt left (who took the time to go through the house for documents and valuables apparently), Lola started asking where Sonya was. Even though my dad kept telling her she quit, she got really upset thinking we either fired her or a woman she considered her only friend left her.


Anyway... Lola's mind is continuing to go. I mentioned in the holiday plans thread that she didn't realize it was Christmas.

I woke up this morning to her and my mom arguing about money yet again.

I don't know if I explained before, but my aunt who lives in L.A. pretty much took all of Lola's money and made herself the irrevocable executor and such. Lola insists she didn't sign any documents making her such (she did, though), and she keeps railing about how she wants her money back.

My parents keep arguing with her to stop worrying about it and just live her life and not think about it any more. It's the same fight over and over again. Today, it was over her saying someone stole her will from a suitcase (probably the aunt who was down here). My parents, enraged that she keeps picking fights, just picked up left the house.

I'm sick of this shit, because I'm always the one who's stuck at home having to watch her, and they leave for hours at a time whether or not I have plans. They went to see my dad's sister today and said they would only be gone two hours, which really panned out to 9 hours. In the meantime, Lola kept trying to get me to take her side against everyone and call up my aunts to curse them out.

When I mentioned I'd be out of town this coming week, they kept yelling that I had to be home by a certain day to take care of her.

What's really pissed me off was how my aunt (from the Bay Area) started chastising my parents for how I would be starting my internship soon and they should be making me stay to watch Lola.

I mean, I get it. She's my grandmother. And she's a human being. Everyone's treating her like a burden, and I suppose with how much responsibility I've been shouldering lately, I've been getting more and more annoyed about the situation.

Honestly, this whole situation is making me upset. None of the other grandchildren give a shit about Lola, and when they see her they kiss her ass. Her own daughters are only concerned about her money, and my mom is getting stressed out with having to reassure her that she shouldn't worry about money.
Elara

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Since: 08-15-04
From: Ferelden

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Last activity: 3 days
Posted on 01-03-11 04:23 PM Link
Wow, I am so sorry that you have to deal with this. But honestly you should just tell them all that it is not your responsibility, they are the children it is theirs. If she is a burden then find a care facility for her or hire a competent caregiver and quit being such cheap-asses.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 05-30-11 12:51 PM Link
A bit of an update on the situation.

My grandmother is about to turn 90. My mom is trying to throw her a surprise party. No one is flying down for this, and no one from L.A. is willing to make the staggering 20 minute drive.

In spite of the lack of enthusiasm, Lola's primarily living with my aunt in L.A. now, but my uncle who lives over an hour away has to come by the aunt's house to pick her up and bring her to our house on Fridays and vice versa on Mondays. It's not as though my aunt or my unemployed cousin could just drop her off themselves. Brandon and I have gone to pick her up a few times, but this whole having my uncle do it was apparently part of an agreement so no one could try to claim he did nothing in the process of taking care of Lola.

She's gotten a lot worse, and yet still playing mind games with people. For instance, she's telling my aunt she doesn't want to come here because we aren't feeding her, which is BULLSHIT. We almost have to force-feed her because she constantly refuses to eat. She keeps playing all of the sides against each other. Last night at a Mexican restaurant she through a fit over the fact that they didn't have clam chowder.

And to comment on the cleanliness of my aunt's house -- HOLY FUCK. She keeps collecting chihuahuas and she's up to nearly 30 dogs IN HER HOUSE. When we've gone to pick Lola up, we have to go through the garage and into the kitchen where you can't see countertop under the piles of uneaten, rotting, greasy food with the floor dirty and piles of things EVERYWHERE with the occasional dog barking and nipping at your feet.

Lola's been telling them that she's deaf and blind now. When I called her on this in front of my aunt (because Lola, despite the use of only one eye, is actually quite adept at seeing things in the distance. She was remarking on the length of a ship on the horizon when we were sitting in a restaurant in Seal Beach just a couple days before), my aunt refused to believe me.

And every-fucking-time we get Lola back she hasn't changed her socks and she smells like urine and fecal matter. After my graduation last week, she and my mom got into an argument about her diapers, because she says they're getting too heavy. She's able to go to the bathroom and change her own diapers, she simply refuses to change them until they fall off because they're so full.

On a positive note, she was ecstatic when I graduated and laughed uproariously, louder than I'd ever heard her laugh in my life, as I ran while pushing her in the wheelchair we rented. It was a great moment between us.

So, that's the story up 'til now. Still no caregiver. My parents can't afford it, and the L.A. aunt who stole all of Lola's money won't foot the bill on that. The Bay Area aunt doesn't give a shit. She's phoning it in at this point, only concerned with the money. My uncle, well, he's just doing the bare minimum, allied with the L.A. aunt.
Elara

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Since: 08-15-04
From: Ferelden

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 3 days
Posted on 05-30-11 08:14 PM Link
Part of me says you should either call in an anonymous complaint to social services or public heath about your aunt's house (or have one of her neighbor's do it)... complain about the smell, the dogs, the fact that there is an elderly woman living there being exposed to it. Maybe it can help get the placed cleaned up and the dogs put somewhere else if the county orders her to do it.

Your mom's siblings really deserve to be kicked in the face. Just saying.
Rogue
If you're reading this... You are the Resistance











Since: 08-17-04

Since last post: 3 days
Last activity: 2 days
Posted on 05-31-11 04:47 AM Link
Tell me about it.

Some situation came up a month or so ago where the L.A. aunt was saying she wanted to call the police on us for some reason or another and my dad called her bluff telling her to go ahead and do it since she's committing elder abuse.

When my grandfather died we went through the same shit. L.A. and San Francisco aunt fought over money, while my mom and uncle cried.
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