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What did you say to your STEP CHILDREN to get them involved with their Dad
Internal Administrator
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Joined: 1/14/2015
Posts: 40463


Originally posted by: Montanaman

Your own children are different that the step children. I married their dad after they were grown and their mom deceased. I think they expect me to do everything. But the money has run out. I also need respite. Non subsidized in our state. How doe I start a letter, phone call? Do I ask for specific help or general help. I do not want this to turn into a blame game or inquisition. I am appalled that I have to do this at all cause I did not grow up this was. Any ideas?
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: LarryD

I would invite the kids to come for a visit to see their dad and discuss some ideas about his care. If your husband is coherent you can decide whether to involve him in the plan. At any rate, once they get there, ask them whether they are familiar with or have read anything about this disease their father has. Are they aware of the extra costs involved in caring for someone who can not care for themselves. I was amazed at how much the medications, diapers, special skin protectives, special clothing, cleaning supplies and machines, walking aids, wheelchairs, foods, ramps, bathroom remodel with grab bars, etc, and even someone to watch while I go to the store or bank, are costing us. Forget about mentioning your needs for respite; concentrate on their dad's needs and make them fully aware of the fact that the money is gone. Do they know you can't afford medications that would help their dad? Are they aware of what the future holds for him and are they willing to ignore it?

Finally just tell them you need help. Tell them they are welcome to examine your finances to make sure you are doing the best you can but tell them you need financial help with their dad. Even a few hundred a month would help. Then sit back and listen to what they have to say.

If you get a wishy washy answer like, "we will see what we can do", reaffirm that you need help,now!

Hang in there. From what I have read, you are not alone in your problems with step children ignoring their parent in the hopes the new spouse will take the full burden and problem off their hands.

This disease can alienate even the best of families and friends so good luck with your step family.

Let us know how it goes.

Blessings to you as you go forward,

LarryD
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Cathy J. M.

I'd say, in writing (letter or email) -- so you have time to think about how to phrase things so as not to cause offense or defensiveness -- and they have time to ponder your words before replying.

Think about whether or not you need to do any research or prep before asking them for help. Do you have POA for Finances? One of them should be your backup on that in case anything happens to you -- so do you want that to be your decision? Your husband's? Volunteer from the kids?

Same with POA for Medical Care.

Advance Directives done?

Have you consulted a lawyer re. protecting any assets and income you have now?

When you contact the kids, call it a family meeting (even if it's by email) and tell them you're sure they want to do what they can for their father, just as you want to do all you can do for him. You might give them some ideas of the kind of help you need -- financial (money for part time caregiver, plus help reducing household expenses), home repairs and improvements (to adapt home for AD care), emotional (encouragement and listening for both you and their father) -- and anything else that comes to mind -- bringing meals, spending time with your husband, sending cards and phoning him regularly, etc.

If there are books on AD that you've found especially helpful and encouraging, mention these too. If you haven't had time to read any, forum members often recommend a free online book, Coach Boyle's Playbook, and a long article, The Dementia Experience. There are also tips online about how to interact with someone with AD.

My favorite books for beginners are "I'm Still Here," by John Zeisel, and "Learning to Speak Alzheimer's." Many people love "Creating Moments of Joy" partly because you can dip into it at any time.

"The Alzheimer's Action Plan" is also good for a family because it deals with medications, diet, etc. along with how to interact with the person with AD.

I mention that relatives can sometimes help with cutting household costs because that happened with my partner's extended family -- saved us a lot of money because they had expertise in telephone things.

Speaking of extended family -- don't forget your own kids if you have any, and your husband's nieces, nephews, etc.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Jim Broede

I always encouraged my step children to maintain contact with their biological father. Even when he was healthy. I even encouraged my wife to be decent to her ex-husband. Because he did me a favor. By setting Jeanne free. So that I could have her in my life. When he was dying, I went to see him. And thanked him. For the blessing. Of, in a sense, giving me Jeanne. Another example of how something 'bad' (the divorce) really turned out to be good. For Jeanne. For me. --Jim
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: arteche

I have had it with stepchildren,all grown up when we married, got along with all of them, now, no patience anymore.

I get a respite in July because I have a family reunion in N.Y., the youngest helps me then but needed to go in May for my Granddaughters communion. Nobody could do it, the youngest is 52, next 56 and his son is 54.

I almost begged for May but no they couldn't do it but the 2 daughters came to visit in Apr.,I don't get it.

I also like to go see my family in Jan, I wouldn't expect anyone to come for Christmas, so I plan on mid Jan., his daughters come in Nov., so they can't come in Jan.

I had MY granddaughter (26) come in Jan., and my brother offered and stayed for my Granddaughters' communion. He has a son who didn't come or call for a 1 1/2, finally since I gave all hell to my SD. They said he calls, I told them no way have I missed his call in all that time, needless to say he has called 3 times since Apr. He tells his D he will visit soon but I'm sure I'm still begging around for Apr. Red Face Mad Mad
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: genevieveln

I'm in a similar situation. I'm so sorry. My husband is 15 yrs older than me, with dimentia and bi-polar disease. My stepchildren "think" they help. His daughters see him for lunch once a week, never an offer to stay with him. Ask how I am, etc. I am in my mid-50's but had a hip replacement a yr ago. Never an offer to do anything for us. Tnk God my family came from out of town to help me. but when there is a crisis, they come and then criticize the drs. and his care decisions I have made. His son rarely calls him, which hurts him.
I have given up asking them for help and work on accepting how limited they are. I have good friends and family (albeit out of town). I have done my best to put all legal ducks in a row financially and poa, advanced directive, medical poa, etc. I would suggest stopping the dream of something you cannot have (it is hard, I know) avail yourself of all info from social workers, programs in your area, etc. and start coming up with plans of how you will live when you have to live separately, or if you can find a reasonable $ caregiver to live with you so you can get out and have a life. It is really hard; everyone tells me to put myself first, but it is practically a very difficult thing to do. Be nice to yourself, as best you can. I just joined this forum and someone said, "You are not alone". Boy, just that sentence has helped me so much.
Take care.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Fluffy

It is so nice if step children are willing to help. Due to difference nin age between hubby and me his 2 daughters are older than me. Son is slightly younger. I had asked his 2 daughters quite awilke ago to stay with their Dad for few hours while I went out. They said they would although not happy about it. When day came for me to go out they never showed up. This happenend twice so never asked them again. The one daughter said well you married him. Should have thought about this before you did. Son too busy going going to his condo in St. Martin, or on cruises, trips to Europe, etc. He well off but of no help.He even told me 4 or 5 years ago to put him in a G..D..f...nursing home. It's a shame. We all got along pretty good until husband came down with AD.
Then everything I did was wrong. Hubby probably be in ALF because hisn Alz. advancing and seems I'm on the go all day. My patience is wearing thin. I can't afford the full cost of placement but could pay 1/2. If the three kids could split the oither 1/2 it would be a life saver. But they won't. We don't qualify for any help because husbands pension a little over the limit the state allows. Don't know what's going to happen when I can't go on.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Cathy J. M.

quote:
Originally posted by fluffy:
We don't qualify for any help because husbands pension a little over the limit the state allows. Don't know what's going to happen when I can't go on.


Fluffy, I'm pretty sure there's still a way to get Medicaid funding to place your husband. Talk to an eldercare lawyer who knows Medicaid law from A to Z in your state, and also talk to social worker at the facility or facilities you've picked out. It may be that some of your husband's pension goes to the NH -- the "extra" -- and Medicaid picks up the balance -- but there may be some other solution too that the experts will know.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: arteche

Sorry, I meant beg for Jan
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: sf

Fluffy, followup up with an elder care attorney, on spousal refusal loophole for Medicaid.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Fluffy

genevievein-I don't know if you were repling to ''me. If so, what dream. I inherited this house from my parents. Did have dremas of updating it but that went by the wayside. Used to have relativres that lived nearby but thry have all passed on. New ones in now don't bother with us 'older people'. Friends have left so it's just husband and me. I did habe plans is place for my future, an inheritance from parents and an Aunt, but have been told by state agencies that even if husbands pension under the limit I would have to spend that also before being eligible for help. How do they expect me to live? I am not going to sell the house I have lived in for all my 64 yrs. State can't touch thatbin anyway becaause it is mine. Never had husbands name put on it. NJ is a very tough state to get any help in.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: biccoastal

I agree that you likely will have to adjust your expectations downward, but a family meeting is a good way to explain what needs to be done and find out what they might be willing to do.

My stepdaughters are supportive enough right now but I don't expect that to last if I actually ask for a commitment of time or money. I am assuming I will be on my own to find whatever help I need.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: genevieveln

Hi, Fluffy, yes, I was responding to you...I meant the dream of getting the stepchildren to help. Sorry if that sounds harsh. Personally, I have wasted so much energy trying to get them to change. I work on accepting who they are, and who everyone is (they show me by their behavior) and the situation. Believe me, I rage against it A LOT, but in the end, I have to do it myself. It is a bitter pill to swallow.
I don't know if you have an eldercare attorney, but he/she may be able to steer you in different decisions. I'm sure none of them are easy or pleasant. Like I've said to my family and friends, no decision I have to make relating to this situation with my husband are happy ones. He moves to a place, I have to sell our home, we have a caregiver live w/us full-time, I have no privacy anymore and I would not consider this my home, or we divorce, which would be very sad . Yuk. It is just a lousy situation, all the way around.
I wish you strength and peace in dealing with this difficult process.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Cathy J. M.

quote:
Originally posted by genevieveln:
I am a prisoner..as so many people here know, our lives are suffering because we can't leave them alone, so going out to exercise, a meeting, etc. is dicey, to say the least.


Act NOW to start finding substitute caregivers. Your state's agency for aging will have some resources and advice, as will local ministers and social workers. If you can afford to pay for even a few hours a week -- rates range from about $9 in GA to twice that in richer areas -- it's well worth it! Some day centers are income-scaled, and many states offer Medicaid-funded day center or in-home care.

Even if you have to take a part time job to pay for part time aides -- working for a net income gain that's very small or zero, it can be worth it.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: genevieveln

Mimi,
Thanks for the welcome! I cannot believe how much just a few posts have helped me. I always felt so guilty for the negative feelings I have, it helps to see that others have difficulty coping. My husband's decision making is very poor. I always caution him not to open the door to strangers; we were just having dinner, he went to see who rang the bell, I reminded him not to open the door unless it was a neighbor and he opened the door to a real estate person and started to tell her about a financial process we are in...I wanted to scream. I cannot trust him with anything. He goes in and out (mostly out) with being "normal" but then reverts back. I am a prisoner..as so many people here know, our lives are suffering because we can't leave them alone, so going out to exercise, a meeting, etc. is dicey, to say the least. I am exhausted as we all are. anyway, thanks again for the welcome! It is really a shot in the arm for me. I am grateful! I will call that number, too!
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: genevieveln

Thank you. I do have a caregiving "team" in place. OF course, I wish it could be more hourse, but I am grateful for what I have. I now have to explore the next level of care, perhaps adult day care, a live in caregiver or placement. I have dreaded doing these things but I know the time is coming and I need to be ready.
Thanks for the advice...will keep posting/reading, it's a big help.
Anonymous
Posted: Tuesday, January 17, 2012 5:20 PM
Originally posted by: Mimi S.

Hi Genevieveln,
Welcome to our world. We're so glad you found us.
Sometime you might want to call the help line 1-800-272-3900 and talk with whomever answers. They might have ideas for you. In any case, venting is good.
 
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