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  1. #1
    hillview's Avatar
    hillview is offline Blue Diamond level (20,000+ posts)
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    Default Intro for elder care

    I thought it might be good to have a thread of intro of who has what going on re elder care.

    My parents are in their mid 70s and live with us and are in pretty good shape. My mom has pre diabetes and is a stage IV cancer survivor so she has ongoing medical challenges. My MIL is in her 90s and not in good health but they live far from us. She often needs urgent care. We support them all financially.
    DS #1 Summer 05
    DS #2 Summer 07

  2. #2
    Zansu is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    Parent/ILs are all 79-80. We're dealing with Parkinson's, relocations, possible co-housing.

    My biggest frustration is loss of hearing in my mom. Every conversation is held with raised voice, which raises my blood pressure and causes me to be less than patient. She has hearing aids, but doesn't wear them if it's just family.

  3. #3
    hellokitty is offline Pink Diamond level (15,000+ posts)
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    We do not have parents living with us, however I do think about elder care often.

    1.5 yrs ago my parents moved several states away to live closer to my brother. This sounds horrible, but it has taken some of the load off of me. My dad is in his mid-70's, but has never taken care of his health. He's a walking trainwreck, his diabetes has resulted in chronic heart disease, including open heart surgery (he is about due for a re-do, but we doubt he could be a candidate), he has neuropathy, his diabetes is poorly managed, he self-medicated himself for decades (he is a retired MD... whoever said that MDs make the worst patients are completely correct) and as a result he also suffers from end-stage renal failure, which is also in part due to his diabetes. He also has back issues and refused to get treatment for that, so to me he is an accident (falls risk), waiting to happen, on top of all of his other issues. He needs to be on dialysis, but refuses, but this is MO, everything is done kicking and screaming with lots of drama and resistence. We don't think he will live for more than a couple more years. Worse yet he is NPD and has a very toxic personality (which is why I wasn't sad to see them move)... even without the chronic disease that makes him grumpy, he is already a very unpleasant person to be around, it makes it difficult to feel sorry for him when he has always been such a giant jerk to us and his own actions have led to these results (despite my mom and my brothers and I trying to dissuade his unhealthy habits). My mom is healthy, and a saint for putting up with him. However, I worry about her, the caregiver stress and what will happen once my dad dies or worse yet, she dies first for whatever reason, my father is such a bear. It sounds awful, but b/c they now live closer to my brother and my brother has never had to deal with my parents before, most of this will be on him now that they've moved closer to him. For 14 yrs, I was the one who dealt with all of this crap.

    My in laws... ugh. They are luckily relatively healthy, but they live only an hr from us. Mil has hypothyroidism, but is a hypochondriac and has anxiety and depression that combined together make her a negative, needy, dramaqueen, soul-sucking, emotional vampire to be around. They only live an hour from us. However, they are very needy. Fil was always ok, until he retired and how he is stuck with mil 24/7, and going crazy, and he projects that onto dh and so my dh has been miserable for the past yr. I blame it all on mil. She needs to be on meds, but refuses to take them. We are, "stuck" with them. Bil is barely in the picture and shirks his duties as a son. He did invite them to move to their city, which is in a much nicer area... several yrs ago, but unfortunately mil wanted to stay here. Dh said that means that they are chosing US to take care of them in their old age. I cannot deal with mil and her personality/mental issues, so I avoid her as much as possible and I dread what will happen if fil dies first and mil is left. I KNOW she wants to live with us, but I feel like that will only happen if dh and I get divorced. FTR, if it were the flip situation where fil outlived mil, I would have no issue with fil coming to live with us. This is one reason why bil and sil have nothing to do with mil/fil, b/c sil could no longer tolerate mil. So, we got stuck with the boobie prize and yes, I resent it.

    Both sets are emotionally draining to deal with and barely know my kids at all, due to being so wrapped up in themselves. How do you seperate the resentment that you feel with emotionally needy and aging grandparents who were also crappy parents and grandparents?
    Mom to 3 LEGO Maniacs

  4. #4
    lovin2shop is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    My mom is close to 70 and my dad is 73. They live about 4 hours away, in a somewhat rural area that they moved to in retirement. It is very pretty, but it does bother me that they are out there alone and somewhat secluded. I've tried to convince them to move closer to us, but have not at all been successful. My mom has terminal brain cancer, and her life expectancy was about 14 months at diagnosis. She is at that point now, and doing very well considering. She does have lingering issues from her surgeries and radiation over the last year and half. These include vision, speech and hearing deficits, but she manages all of them pretty well. The vision issue concerns me the most, as she has little to no peripheral vision on one side and has taken a tumble on a couple of occasions. The speech issues seem to bother her the most. I haven't been able to get her to do any PT/OT or rehab type therapy, but I'm not sure exactly how much that would help overall. My Dad is not in great health, but does manage to care for my mom well. He has diabetes, which he says in control, but he eats HORRIBLY for a diabetic and never tests his levels. He has gastroparesis as result, and really struggles with it and has not found any effective medications to treat it. He also has high blood pressure and cholesterol, but did just do a full cardiac work up and is reportedly doing well. He was scheduled for angioplasty or stent a couple of weeks ago, but once they put the dye in all of the plaque moved right out of the artery, so they did not have to do anything at all. So, I worry a lot, but they seem content to make the rounds of Dr's appointments by themselves. I do struggle to get complete information on all of the medical issues from them. My parents do well financially as they both have pensions; and despite never having high dollar professional salaries, they were very big savers.

    My MIL is 73, and she lives alone, and is also four hours away. She also has diabetes, though she takes better care of herself. She has macular degeneration that requires her to get injections in her eyes every month. She had a big scare a few weeks ago with a really serious eye infection post injection that could have left her blind. We have also tried to get her to move closer to us or to BIL with no luck, but clearly the vision issues could eventually cause her to change her mind. We have supported her off and on over the years, as her retirement account dwindles, I expect we will ultimately provide full support at some point.

    Needless to say, I believe that I will be a big reader of this forum because we definitely have a lot of issues to face. Thank you for the getting this started Hillview!

  5. #5
    abh5e8 is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    Thankfully, mil/fil live 12 hours away, 20 mind from sil. I assume the burden will fall on her. But they are 61 and in excellent health. My dad is also 61, excellent health and has a 41 yo wife, who I assume will take care of him. they live 2 hours away. My mom is 60, still works and is 2 hours away. She doesn't exercise or eat well, but is so far healthy. No meds or anything. Her husband is older and not in great health... I am sort of planning on her coming to live with us later on. So... All that to say, I'm not really there yet, but it is something I want to learn more about.
    Last edited by abh5e8; 02-15-2016 at 04:02 PM.
    loving my dh and our littles (dd ~ 11 yrs, ds ~ 9 yrs, ds ~ 7 yrs, dd ~ 5 yrs and baby brother ~ 20 mo)

  6. #6
    ArizonaGirl is online now Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    I worry about this a lot as my Dad just turned 70 and is scheduled to have his second knee replaced in mid-March. My mom just turned 65 and is in good health but right now my priority has been trying to get them to downsize.

    They are living in a two story house (almost 3800 sq ft) on 1/3 of an acre. They are the nicest most helpful people every day, they help me with my kids (one of which has special needs), they are amazing.

    I am worried though because they are products of not having much growing up and as a result have hoarding tendencies. This house is full, I mean FULL, of stuff, most of which I don't want. I am so the opposite of this, I live a relatively simple life and don't need "things" at all. They have a 4 car garage and the minivan and Miata barely fit because of all of the stuff.

    I am literally overwhelmed by the thought of trying to get the house cleared out and fixed up to sell. My mom is motivated because she is feeling the toll of taking care of such a large home. My dad just doesn't seem motivated to move.

    I feel very lonely because all of my friends and my husbands parents are much younger than mine so I don't really know anyone that can relate to what I am feeling.

    My DH parents are a disaster, but of their own making, they are younger (early 50s).

    They have been using illegal drugs for years and abusing alcohol, they don't have insurance and so they never go to the doctor, hell my FIL doesn't even have a bank account.

    We are not really close to them though so we will see what happens later on.

    My MIL lives about 25 minutes away from us but about 5 minutes away from BIL and his family and they are pretty close.

    My FIL lives in another state...

    I am more worried about my DH grandparents who live in a smaller city about 3 hours from us. My DH is their executor for their will and is responsible for releasing the monetary gifts to the 3 children (his Aunt, Uncle and Mom) and that I am dreading something fierce.

    Good luck to you all, and I hope to learn a lot from here.
    Lindsey

    Married to DH June 2005 gave birth to Shawn December 2008 and Lilian August 2012




  7. #7
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    My mum will be 73 this summer with fair range of medical issues. Chronic heart disease (3 different heart attacks in span of 10 years) 4 stents put in 7-8 years ago, and 2 main arteries clogged again. High BP and high cholesterol, landed in hospital for 10 days with pneumonia last year. Lifetime smoker with 2.5 pack daily habit, but stopped as of last year. Horrendous diet management. Retired 8 years ago but went back to work private practice 4 days a week. She lives alone in a 5 bedroom house with far too much stuff/clutter, but is overseas with 3k miles between us. Her care, when she can't cope one day will fall onto me down the road, and I've no idea how to manage since she isn't very forthcoming with details.

    Dad is 80, fairly good health apart from RH in his hands and shoulders. Lives in warm weather 75% year and split his time between his home country and warm state with his younger healthy wife. Wife will manage him if it ever comes to that point.

    MIL is 87, lives locally and fairly healthy apart from irregular heart rhythm. On medication for it. Doesn't drive nighttime and only drives very locally daytime, but prefers FIL to drive her. Fairly mobile. FIL is fairly healthy at 79 with no issues, wear hearing aids due to some loss from age. BIL/SIL and us will manage/care for MIL if she ever becomes infirm. Townhouse is paid off, sufficient financially with good health insurance from FIL state employment. Despite their older years, I'm not as worried for them as I am for my own mum, she's the one who keeps me awake some nights.


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    Mummy to DS1-6/11 and DS2-1/14

  8. #8
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    So glad to see this forum!

    My mom is in her 70s, divorced, and suffers from dementia. She lives in the US and I live in Canada. I put her in a retirement home against her will this summer. I was lucky in that she became hospitalized and 2 doctors were more than willing to sign off on her being incapable to make decisions. Otherwise, I would have had to take her to court I had previously applied successfully to the state to have her driver's license yanked, though she did contest it. Twice.

    I'm an only child and make all medical and financial decisions for her. It's been difficult but she's finally coming around to accepting her situation. She got hearing aids last week and we're hoping they help with the misunderstandings, but it's hard to know if communication difficulties are due to hearing loss (which is major, she's at 30%), or to brain damage due to dementia.

    We are also dealing with this with my MIL who lives local to us and has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. She's on some sort of medication, don't know what. No idea of the state of advancement, any estate planning that's been done, or any plans for a care facility. FIL is attempting to deal with all of this himself and refuses to discuss it. Both are in their 80s. It's a recipe for disaster.
    DS, Summer '07

    "My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world." ~Jack Layton

  9. #9
    kdeunc is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    My dad is 80 and my mom 77. Dad has a history of heart disease but otherwise is doing OK for 80 other than refusing to admit he needs hearing aids!! Mom is healthy. They just put their house on the market this week in order to move to my area. They are currently 3 hours away. It will be a good thing to have them close as they age. MIL is 67 and also now living in our area. FIL died last summer of cancer and we knew she would need to be close to us as well despite being healthy. Luckily DH and I get along with our families and having them close is not a burden.
    Kelly

    DS 1 12-02
    DS 2 12-04
    DD 07-08

  10. #10
    Neatfreak is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    My mom is in her mid-'60s. She's recovering from cancer treatment and is dealing with the beginning of arthritis in her knees. And she is also the main decision-maker for my 96 year-old grandmother, who is dealing with dementia. Thankfully, she's in a care facility.

    My sibling is finally moving out of my mom's house into her own place next year, so my mom is also looking to move, but seems to be struggling with the idea of actually down-sizing. The potential homes that she's keenest on have the same number of bedrooms and square footage as her current house, except there's more stairs. I don't get it. Next time I visit her city, we're going to start clearing out either the basement or the garage.
    ~ Laura



    One in 2004 and the other one in 2008

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