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If you said the money is in a joint account...

withdraw your rent payment.

Keep a folder of bills you pay on her behalf and draw up a quick one page bill of the amount she owes you for her care. Staple the withdrawal slip receipt to such bill.

...immediate problem of rent solved so you and your husband can focus on the other immediate issues.

If it is not joint...get that DPA signed asap and then make the account joint so you don't have to take the account through the probate court when she dies.


FBH(me)-51 FWW-49 (MrsWondering)
DD19 DS 22 Dday-2005-Recovered

"agree to disagree" = Used when one wants to reject the objective reality of the situation and hopefully replace it with their own.
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Writer1,

please listen to Mr W's advice, which is extremely to the point.
You have to survive this as a family in one piece.

Please realize that is possible that your mom will live considerably shorter or longer than doctors anticipate at this time, depending on how fast her cancer grows and spreads.

May God give you strength during this time.


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Do Mr W's plan, its brilliant!


What would you do if you were not afraid?

"Fear is the little death. Fear is the mind-killer" Frank Herbert.

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I don't have a lot of time, but just a quick update.

Friday, I got a call from the rehab hospital where my mom was staying. They said they couldn't order the TPN, which they wanted her on. So their plan was to send her to the ER, have me meet her there, then have me attempt to convince the doctors at the hospital (one she'd never been to before) to admit her and start TPN. I immediately realized how ridiculous it was for them to expect me to do this. I'm not sure why they ever thought having me try to tell doctors who don't know anything about my mom or her condition how to do their job was ever going to work.

So, I called my mom's primary care physician. She agreed with me and we both set to work trying to get my mom moved to a skilled nursing facility in our city (she was about 13 miles away in a different city) so her own doctor could take over her care. Before we could do so, the rehab hospital where my mom was sent her via ambulance to the hospital. So, I had to go there, pick her up, bring her to the new facility in my car (even though she hadn't sat up or ridden in a car for 2 weeks). She was finally admitted to the new rehab place and able to see her own doctor for the first time in almost a month.

Her doctor is amazing. I love her. She finally sat down with us and had an honest discussion about what's going on with my mother and the cancer. Up until this point, every doctor has refused to be straight with us and actually say "You are dying." That finally happened. She told my mother that she doesn't have to actually have these radiation and chemo treatments if she doesn't want to. No one had ever said that before. She told her they probably won't help and they could very likely make her feel a whole lot worse, which we've known because it has been happening, but have never been able to get a doctor to admit before. So, my mother made the decision to quit the chemo and radiation. And, in her case, I support her decision.

Right now, she is still at the new rehab place (which is so much better than the old one). Not sure if she will stay there or come home. We are looking into getting her placed in the hospice program this week. I will also be looking into getting the durable power of attorney.

It feels like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders. Even though it's horrible, it is so much easier having a medical professional who is willing to have the difficult discussions and let you know what all of your options are so that you can make an informed decision about what is best for you individually. Why this didn't happen 6 weeks ago when all of this started is beyond my ability to comprehend.


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Writer dear, I am so glad your doctor was open and upfront with you. We had this very same conversation with my husband's oncologist when his cancer came back. It was a choice of trying chemo to MAYBE shrink the tumor, for a while, but surgery was out of the question, and the chemo would have made him suffer that much more. The doc actually said I wish I could send ALL my patients into hospice early on, but as long as they are receiving any life sustaining treatment, he couldn't. He knew it was the end of the battle for my husband. He went into Home Hospice a week later. The hardest thing was we thought we had 6-18 months, but he only lasted four months. It was horrible.

I know you are relieved, but I warn you, this is not going to be easy. Treasure your time with her, get plenty of photos, etc, because all you will have left are the memories and the photos, after she's gone. The $$ won't even matter.

I am so sorry.


Widowed 11/10/12 after 35 years of marriage
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In a sense now, I am homeless. For the home, the place of refuge, solitude, love-where my husband lived-no longer exists. Joyce Carolyn Oates, A Widow's Story
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Originally Posted By: princessmeggy
Writer dear, I am so glad your doctor was open and upfront with you. We had this very same conversation with my husband's oncologist when his cancer came back. It was a choice of trying chemo to MAYBE shrink the tumor, for a while, but surgery was out of the question, and the chemo would have made him suffer that much more. The doc actually said I wish I could send ALL my patients into hospice early on, but as long as they are receiving any life sustaining treatment, he couldn't. He knew it was the end of the battle for my husband. He went into Home Hospice a week later. The hardest thing was we thought we had 6-18 months, but he only lasted four months. It was horrible.

I know you are relieved, but I warn you, this is not going to be easy. Treasure your time with her, get plenty of photos, etc, because all you will have left are the memories and the photos, after she's gone. The $$ won't even matter.

I am so sorry.


Thank you princessmeggy. I know it isn't going to be easy. And I don't know how much time we have left, but I am going to treasure every moment. Luckily, my mom is now only 2 miles from our home, so I can go see her whenever I want. We went up yesterday and took pictures of grandma with some of the grandkids. DS21 is leaving for Colorado tomorrow, so I wanted to get some pictures of him with her before he left.


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I'm very glad to hear that your doctor levelled with your Mom. Wishing you strength in the days ahead.

Don't forget to pay attention to your DH, too.

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Originally Posted By: kerala


Don't forget to pay attention to your DH, too.


We went out on a date last night. I even managed to stay mostly awake the entire time, which is about the best I can promise at the moment.


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Writer 1

Stopping treatment is probably the wisest decision your mother could have made. Thank God that you have such a good primary care physician. Many if not most people who go through palliative chemotherapy and other treatments only experience the side effects and complications and end up losing quality of life in their last months. To be honest, I highly doubt if your mother makes it through the year. From what you tell, it might as well be half a year or less. Doctors tend to overestimate life expectancy in cancer patients.

As hard as it is, try to dose your strength around the important aspects of your life. And writing down your extra expenditure on a piece of paper (like driving to the hospital again) with receipts, like Mr Wondering says is a good idea.


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Writer, (((hugs))) to you, what a roller coaster. I'm so relieved for you all that you are finally getting some respite.


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So, the latest dilemma.

As my mom leaves rehab and enters hospice, we basically have three choices:

1) She comes home and we hire a home healthcare aide for $5000-$6000 a month (24/hr. care, which her doctor feels will be necessary, but may be impossible for us since it would require us to provide a room for the caregiver and with 5 people living in a 3-bedroom house, we just don't have one).

2) We place my mother in a boarding care facility where she will get round-the-clock care by a qualified caregiver for $2500-$3000 a month.

3) She stays in the facility she is in now as a skilled nursing patient and receives around-the-clock care by a medical team for $6000 a month.

We were very much hoping that my mother would choose Option 2. But she chose Option 1. She wants to come home. And since we can't legally hire a 24/7 caregiver because of lack of space, my mother wants me to be her primary caregiver with only the hospice to help out (visits 5 days a week for 1-2 hours maximum). We could hire a part-time caregiver during the day, but that runs $20/hr., so we would be paying the same for 10 hours of care as someone else would for 24 hours of care.

My options seem extremely limited. If I bring my mother home and assume primary responsibility for her care, I will essentially have to give up my entire life. I know how demanding this is going to be from the time I've spent with her in the rehab facility, where she is literally asking me to do things for her constantly the entire time I'm there. She repeatedly acknowledges that this is "going to be a lot of work for me..." but it doesn't seem to bother her in the least to have this expectation.

If I put my mother into the boarding care against her will, my husband and I will be in immediate financial dire straights, as I can't expect my mother to contribute financially to a household she no longer lives in because I won't allow her to. We have no money at all, so even moving to a cheaper place wouldn't be an option.

I am feeling so dejected and hopeless right now. I don't have any idea what to do.

I hate the fact that I have to be obsessing about money constantly, but our rent is due in four days and we have no money to pay it.


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writer, I would let her know that you support option #2, not option #1 and ask her if she will contribute to your rent. Let her know your dire straits, but also let her know you can't do option #1. Your mother does not get to make decisions about your life too. Don't give her that option.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted By: MelodyLane
writer, I would let her know that you support option #2, not option #1 and ask her if she will contribute to your rent. Let her know your dire straits, but also let her know you can't do option #1. Your mother does not get to make decisions about your life too. Don't give her that option.


I had this exact conversation with her tonight. The problem is, she's really out of it. I keep repeating things over and over again, but I think she's only processing about 20-30% of what I say. She actually falls asleep in the middle of having a conversation. And much of the time, when I ask her a question, she doesn't answer at all.

If I had known things were going to go downhill this fast, I would have gotten all of this straightened out so much sooner. But they told us we had a year. Two weeks ago, my mom was walking around the house, not very fast but she was walking. She was sleeping a lot and having issues with pain, but mentally she was fine. Now she can't even sit up by herself.

Things are happening so fast, my head is spinning.


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Originally Posted By: writer1
Originally Posted By: MelodyLane
writer, I would let her know that you support option #2, not option #1 and ask her if she will contribute to your rent. Let her know your dire straits, but also let her know you can't do option #1. Your mother does not get to make decisions about your life too. Don't give her that option.


I had this exact conversation with her tonight. The problem is, she's really out of it. I keep repeating things over and over again, but I think she's only processing about 20-30% of what I say. She actually falls asleep in the middle of having a conversation. And much of the time, when I ask her a question, she doesn't answer at all.

If I had known things were going to go downhill this fast, I would have gotten all of this straightened out so much sooner. But they told us we had a year. Two weeks ago, my mom was walking around the house, not very fast but she was walking. She was sleeping a lot and having issues with pain, but mentally she was fine. Now she can't even sit up by herself.

Things are happening so fast, my head is spinning.


Make the decision for her and tell her it is going to be option #2. writer, at some point you have to stop letting life happen to you and do what is best for all. I did this with my own father in the end. Your mother is out of it and can't make decisions in her best interest.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted By: MelodyLane

Make the decision for her and tell her it is going to be option #2. writer, at some point you have to stop letting life happen to you and do what is best for all. I did this with my own father in the end. Your mother is out of it and can't make decisions in her best interest.


I know. I know Option #2 is best for everyone involved. I just don't know what to do about our expenses. I'm going to have no choice but use some of the money in my mom's saving's account to help pay our rent this month. And I feel horrible about doing that if she wants to come home and I say no.

We never should have agreed to only allow her to contribute $400 a month. Our expenses went up so much more than that when we moved here, and we blew through all of our savings trying to pay for everything when she refused to contribute more than the $400.


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Originally Posted By: writer1
Originally Posted By: MelodyLane

Make the decision for her and tell her it is going to be option #2. writer, at some point you have to stop letting life happen to you and do what is best for all. I did this with my own father in the end. Your mother is out of it and can't make decisions in her best interest.


I know. I know Option #2 is best for everyone involved. I just don't know what to do about our expenses. I'm going to have no choice but use some of the money in my mom's saving's account to help pay our rent this month. And I feel horrible about doing that if she wants to come home and I say no.

We never should have agreed to only allow her to contribute $400 a month. Our expenses went up so much more than that when we moved here, and we blew through all of our savings trying to pay for everything when she refused to contribute more than the $400.


Don't feel horrible, writer. It is the right thing to do. You can't let your family crash and burn. Just go do the right thing and keep good records like MrW suggested. I know it is hard, but you have to make these decisions for your mother and for your family. Unfortunately, it all falls on your shoulders.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted By: MelodyLane


Don't feel horrible, writer. It is the right thing to do. You can't let your family crash and burn. Just go do the right thing and keep good records like MrW suggested. I know it is hard, but you have to make these decisions for your mother and for your family. Unfortunately, it all falls on your shoulders.


Thanks Melody. I know I have to do it. And I know I'm not abandoning my mother. I'm going to make sure she is taken care of. And she'll only be a few miles away. I'll be able to see her everyday. I have to keep reminding myself that this is what's best for her too. I want her to receive the care she needs and I don't think it's possible for that to happen in our home.

It just really sucks that I have to do all of this by myself. I feel so unprepared. I've never wanted a sibling more than I do right now.


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Originally Posted By: writer1
Originally Posted By: MelodyLane


Don't feel horrible, writer. It is the right thing to do. You can't let your family crash and burn. Just go do the right thing and keep good records like MrW suggested. I know it is hard, but you have to make these decisions for your mother and for your family. Unfortunately, it all falls on your shoulders.


Thanks Melody. I know I have to do it. And I know I'm not abandoning my mother. I'm going to make sure she is taken care of. And she'll only be a few miles away. I'll be able to see her everyday. I have to keep reminding myself that this is what's best for her too. I want her to receive the care she needs and I don't think it's possible for that to happen in our home.

It just really sucks that I have to do all of this by myself. I feel so unprepared. I've never wanted a sibling more than I do right now.


I understand completely! I have scads of brothers and sisters and found myself all alone when it came to taking care of my dad in his last days. Since there is no instruction guide I had to just use my best judgement and do what I felt was right. That is all you can do too, my friend.

I agree your mother won't get the best care in your home. You are doing the right thing for her.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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CANCER SUCKS!

Seriously, this is just the most horrendous thing anyone could ever imagine. My mother is in constant pain and suffering. She can't eat. She throws up day and night. She is confused. Nothing the doctor gives her does anything about any of this. It just doesn't seem possible to make her comfortable at this point.

They say we have maybe a month left at best. I simply can't imagine doing this for another month.

She is in hospice now. She was moved to a boarding care facility yesterday. She called me three times in the middle of the night. The attendants at the boarding care said she spent the entire night pushing her button. They would go in, try to put her nasal cannula for her oxygen back in every time she pulled it out, empty her bucket every time she threw up, do their best to make her comfortable. She kept threatening to get out of bed even though she can't get up anymore. She even called 911 at one point, but she didn't know where she was, so they didn't come. This morning she was begging me to take her to the hospital. But I know there's nothing they can do for her there. She is fighting this process and making it harder on herself and everyone else, and I don't know how to help her.

Ugh. I really just needed to vent. I feel so helpless most of the time. I don't even know what to do.


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Originally Posted By: writer1
CANCER SUCKS!

Seriously, this is just the most horrendous thing anyone could ever imagine. My mother is in constant pain and suffering.


Morphine. Tell her to keep asking.


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