Reply with quote #1
My sister and I are having to care for elder parents. Mom had surgery 4 weeks ago. Dad had surgery 1 week ago. Both are having early signs of dementia. Pain medication is increasing dementia problems. Any suggestions on how to care for them with dignity and their finances. Dad handles all finances. They have always prided themselves in being independent.
Reply with quote #2
Hi shorty, and welcome to the board.
Oh...dear -- both recently had surgeries, and father wants to handle all financial stuff. You are in for a rough ride.
Do you or sister have medical and financial POA? I will assume no, since you say Dad wants to handle the finances.
If their minds are starting to slip, it's vital you get the POA set up - at least the financial one. Would your parents be amiable to this?? There are different "levels" of POA that can be set up, you could go for a level that is comfortable for your father. However, it has been my experience, and I've noticed, that full durable POA is best, especially if they can trust you or sister. And do NOT do co-POA with sister, that is a recipe for disaster. It should be you OR her, not both together.
Are they back home yet? Or are they at the NH for rehab?
What level of involvement do you have right now? Are you going to see them every day, every week, once a month, etc.
Watch out for that pain medication, it can really do a number on their cognition, their abilities to function. My mom was sort of in a fog after her first surgery, it took her several months to get back to sort of "normal". I was pretty worried! She forgot how to do a lot of stuff once she got home. Slowly but surely, some things came back to her. Some stuff never did. Part of that is the anesthesia effects on them during surgery too. Many of us have noticed our parents were not the same, after surgery. And - it was a permanent change sometimes, too.
Hang in there, feel free to post here anytime, and ask questions or just share. We can give advice until the cows come home, we're good at that! But just remember that it may not pertain to your particular situation or parents, so take what is useful, and leave the rest.
Reply with quote #3
shorty, everything 'daughter' says is true.. Often the anesthesia, the pain, the change of location, follow up pain meds. All that may magnify dementia symptoms, some times temporary and some times permanent.
POA is often misunderstood. See this site and others http://www.lawdepot.com/contracts/powerattny/?pid=google-pwratt_us-main_b1b-s-ggkey_power%20of%20attorney&&s_kwcid=power%20of%20attorney|644638869&gclid=CI__qvnBg5ICFQgRGgodOUHZ-Q Everyone, Check your state law to see exactly what it means. In all states I have examined, the person accepting POA or assigned POA is in fact swearing to the court to represent the party and never to use this power for personal gain. It is not permanent and may be revoked and reassigned at any time for any reason. Durable (medical) POA is assigned "in case" of incompetence. Until, "incompetance" is established, reassignment can be made by the person involved.. If it is suspected that mismanagement is involved by the assigned party, Adult Protective Services is the agency to invoke. Believe me, a party having power over the funds of an incapacitated human is very likely to end up in jail for abusing this power. At the least, it is contempt of court. Maybe Molly Tx can kick in here. At the very least, you should have a release so that their docs can discuss their situation with you. Ha, I should probably sign myself "experienced gurney chaser". Bro and I do manage to work together , even if we don't always agree. I lead you to the google page for POA http://www.google.com/search?q=Power+of+Attorney&hl=en&start=0&sa=N There are several forms, different limitations and different definition by state I know this is hard to face, but believe me and 'daughter' , the earlier you face this the better. .
Reply with quote #4
shorty, i love that name! anyway, since your dad still wants to handle the finances you may have to approach the subjet delicately. maybe tell him how scared you were when he had to have surgery and what would have mom done if anything had happened to him or does. ask him if he will show you how to do what he does and maybe he needs to look at someone being available to take care of those things if he ever has to go into surgery again and what if the recovery time takes longer. let him know it is just a precaution but it sure scared you. let him know he can have the poa undone at anytime, and hopefully he will forget he signed it. even the most stubborn can sometimes see the sense of that. good luck and god bless. you do have your hands full.