I wonder if anyone can offer any advice.
We are having a best interests meeting this Friday about mum. She has been in a care home since last July, although she was allowed to go home this April as she was deemed to have capacity and she wanted to go home. It was clear (very quickly) that it wasn’t working for several reasons. She was then found to not have capacity and had to return to the care home. She still says she would like to go home, hence the best interests meeting.
Just as a bit of background, mum has mixed dementia and very limited mobility. Dad has mental health and cognitive problems but doesn’t have a formal diagnosis of dementia (yet). Mum has no insight into her care needs and dad has no insight into mum’s care needs, his own limitations and his ability to care for mum. He isn’t able to be patient with her (so lots of frustration, as well as arguments and shouting). He usually says he wants mum home despite how things were when she was home. He seems to forget how things were and denies telling me (after two days of her being home) that he couldn’t cope with her and thought she should go back to the home. He also told her on at least two occasions that if she didn’t “behave” she would have to go back to the care home.
(FYI - Mum had carers three times a day when she was home and dad has carers twice per day).
Obviously Friday’s meeting is going to be a difficult one. We will all be asked our opinions although my brother and I have voiced our opinions about how we don’t feel we can support the decision for mum to return home on other occasions. My dad has managed to coerce my brother into not voicing his opinions on Friday and he may well try and coerce me next but I think it’s important to be honest, in as nice a way as I/we can. It’s highly likely that I (or we, if my brother changes his mind about being open with his opinions) will be disowned by dad, as that happened at another best interests meeting, and at his own discharge planning meeting, last summer.
We have LPA for finance but not health and welfare, so whilst we will be asked our views, the final decision rests with social services. Right now, I’m glad we don’t have the one for health and welfare as that would be just another complication given how things are.
Re the LPA for finance I’m not sure where I would stand if I’m disowned again, ie would it simply be a case of don’t act on it but leave everything as it is, eg the fact that I’m registered as attorney with utilities companies? My brother has registered with the building society but not with anyone else, including the bank, so it’s me who has taken on the bulk of LPA responsibilities so far. My parents only have joint accounts.
I feel so unsettled and stressed right now but can’t even begin to explain (or even register) how I’m feeling other than that. I feel a lot worse given that my brother and I are not on the same page now (although we usually are when it comes to issues relating to our parents).
The way things have been over the last year has taken it’s toll on me physically and mentally and I’m going to need to explain that at the meeting too. I was in a similar way before mum came home before but I ended up having to do even more than I was already doing for them and we had the really stressful task of getting mum back to the care home which affected me (and my husband and brother) a lot for about two weeks afterwards. I am struggling more now than I was back then and often find myself having to take a step back to look after my own mental health.
Thanks for reading this “essay”.