Hi I'm new

Hi all I’m Joanne,
I had my 87 yr old mother move in with us for a short break last year due to illness, the illness turned out to be a blood clot and she was rushed into hospital may last year, thankfully the docs managed to clear the clot with drugs etc. Before she was I’ll it was becoming apparent she was forgetting to take meds etc. So after the hospital she was very confused and as she lived nearest to me ( I have two older sisters who live 2hrs away) i offered her a home with us, which meant she could still still see her friends etc. I am the youngest sister my middle sister is 5 years older and my eldest is15 yes older, my oldest sister said she would have mum for holidays when we needed a break, my middle sister has always been selfish and has offered no help, but gets to have the benefit of seeing mum as she lives near my older sister. My mum is now 88 has vascular dementia, copd, heart failure and is very frail, her memory is deteriorting quite alot, she remembers people but only bits of conversations etc, also need to get her booked in for hearing aid as she is losing her hearing.my husband and I havnt had a break since April, mum was supposed to be going to my sisters this friday for 3 weeks…omg how I was looking forward to that, we had something planned every weekend, then this weekend it was all cancelled as my sister has been in hospital I’ll and now cant have mum for a while and my middle sister will only have her if I do all the travelling, which I’m struggling with as I have a bad back and cant do 4 hours in the car, her excuse for not having mum is she dosnt like driving on motorways, so we have looked at respite care for the last weekend that she was supposed to be away as we were going to my husband family for a big birthday bash, we looked into it yesterday and are going to see the home today, it’s only for 4 days, the thing that’s really upset me is my mums friends came to visit yesterday and mum told them when I was out if the room that none of us wanted her and that we are putting her into a nursing home for good. I spent 3 hours yesterday morning explaining it was only for a couple of days so we cud attend my mil 80th birthday. I’m not sure if she has done it for sympathy or what but its really pressed my buttons, her friend told me what she had said so when I said I’ve told you it’s only for 4 days she turns on the water works to make me feel guilty…I’ve not slept all night because I’m so wound up by the whole situation, I understand fully she is disappointed not to be going to my sisters as we are at not having the next three weeks to ourselves! Sorry for extremely long first post. Joanne :blush:

Hi Joanne, welcome to the forum.

I’m afraid you did the worst possible thing for the best possible reason, and now it’s time for us to help rescue you!
Mum has dementia, and however long you spend explaining things to her, you now have to assume it goes in one ear and out of the other.

The harsh reality is now that mum will be with you for the rest of your life unless you change someone. A friend of mine cared for his mum until she died at 104. Your roles are now reversed in many ways, you are the parent trying to do the best for your “child”. I don’t like the term “elderly toddler” but can’t come up with a better one.

On the forum we talk about “helicopter relatives” and you clearly have two, who may promise to do things, but never do. MUM is probably too frail to cope with being taken up and down the motorway.

How best to deal with this situation depends on a number of factors, money being the most crucial.
Where was mum living before she moved in with you?
Does she have over £23,000 in savings?
Claim Attendance Allowance?
Do you have Power of Attorney?

I have to go out in a few minutes, back later.

Hi, thankyou, no mum has less than 10k in savings, yes she gets attendance allowance, and yes my sisters and I have joint poa. Mum was living on her own in her house before she became ill, this was sold at Christmas, unfortunately she had taken out a living mortgage for alot of money 14 years ago which my eldest sister knew about, myself and middle sister didnt find out till last year, the interest was ridiculous, so when the house sold the mortgage paid there was next to nothing left.
Yes it’s starting to dawn that mum takes in 5% if what I say and forgets the rest or makes it up…I’ve started writing stuff down to remind her so she can refer to little note book, but obviously she keeps forgetting about the book!!! But it does sometimes stops me having to repeat everything. As far as travelling goes she is okay at the moment, but I can see it becoming more if a problem for my eldest sister to come get her she is 69 next month and not now in good health and her husband is massivly overweight and cant tie his own shoes! And my middle sister just lives in her bubble ( we have never been close even as kids so that dosnt help she dosnt want to help and comes up with every excuse possible not to).
We are visiting the nursing home this morning for mum to see and hopefully get her booked in for the bank holiday weekend. :blush:
Keep fingers crossed for me x thankyou again its do nice to have somewhere to vent!!


Joanne, looking forward to a break and in the next breath having it taken away is one of the worst disappointments.

If your Mum didn’t have dementia, she would understand about you going to MIL’s celebration. I think you have to let that reassure and influence you.

It sounds like the sister who had the operation has a genuine excuse this time - ask her if you can put a new set of dates on the calendar now, of when she is over her op and can have your Mum to stay.

My Mum is 82 and doesn’t have dementia, (she has limited mobility but her mind is very sharp,) she travels on holiday (not as far as 4 hours) by a local taxi company who specialise in distances. This might/might not be appropriate for your Mum. Your, “I can’t drive on motorways” sister could of course travel up on the train and stay at yours to look after your Mum or travel up on the train, stay over night and take your Mum back with her.

It all depends on how advanced her dementia is.


In many ways, it’s fortunately that mum doesn’t have much in the way of savings, as it means that Social Services are partly or totally responsible for meeting her care needs, less a percentage of her Attendance Allowance.
They should be contributing towards or paying the full cost of the respite care!!
To get help from them, you need to ask Social Services to do a Needs Assessment for mum and a Carers Assessment for you. You must tell them that you CANNOT carry on as you are. (No one can be forced to care for anyone else, even for a spouse). I would suggest mum moves into a care home in the not too distant future, going out with you now and then.

Bowlingbun & Melly
It has been such a blow having the time off cancelled for both mum and I as mum was looking forward to going to my sisters etc and a change of scene, I was looking forward to a lie in!..andcto be able to switch off. My sister who is ill will not commit to any future dates till her blood pressure is under contro, as once that’s right she then has to have treatment on the blood clot behind her eye, which is going to cause some loss of vision, so that could mean I then dependant on her very over weight husband collecting mum… it’s only 2 hours, the 4 hours is roundtrip. My other sister works full time so uses that as excuse we don’t get on do she wouldn’t want to stay over at mine even tho I would gladly have her if she was taking mum home with her! But she wont…no point setting yourself up for disappointment!
Mums dementia isnt really bad it’s just memory at the moment gets a but muddled with dates times etc but knows who everyone is…but her health isn’t great, mum has her old age pension and attendance allowance and she has my dads Raf pension, the only outgoing she has is a monthly payment to a funeral plan and a couple of hundred she pays into a savings account and every small amount she pays me each week towards fuel food etc. So she does have quite a bit left each month. Anyway we have been to see the care home this morning the owner/manager was delightful lady the home is an old manor house, its abit dated in areas but was extremely clean and didnt smell of you know what when you walked in. The staff were all extremely friendly and some of the residents too. Mum really liked the lady and was happy now she has seen the home! :blush: I had spoken to social services yesterday, and when we got back home there was a message on am for me to ring back, they have made an appointment to come and see us next week to do proper assessment. Feel bit happier now :blush:

Good that sounds much more positive.

What is less good is that you mention that mum pays you “small amounts for…” Her pension is for all her living costs, in residential care she will end up with about £30 for personal expenses.
Mum should be paying you for all her “hotel” expenses and making significant contributions to the family household in other ways, especially as she has AA. This would enable you to get help in when she is with you.

Oh right I felt awful taking 50 per week from her, I also get the carers allowance 66pw. She does also pay us extra in winter when we have to buy more coal ( that’s our main central heating and since mum has been here the coal bill has doubled) she has always offered to pay it each week, sometimes I let her other times i feel guilty taking money from her, and I’m always worried my sisters will be thinking I’m taking money from her and taking advantage. I know if she was in permanent care it would be costing a fortune. What would be a reasonable amount to suggest? I know she wouldn’t object and that’s why i find it hard as she dosnt want us out if pocket etc. And if we go out to the garden centre etc she will always pay for lunch etc.just don’t want back lash from my sisters, as my eldest sister originally wanted my mum to live with them, but mum wudnt go as it was too far from friends and me,who had been visiting her every week to help with cleaning food shopping etc.im sure they would have been taking alot more than I am ! My husband gets very cross sometimes as mum will sit with a plate on her knee if she has d a sandwich waiting for one of us to take it to the kitchen, she us bit unsteady on her feet but capable of taking a plate into kitchen , my husband says its not a b***y hotel !! :astonished:

Hotel? Put the rates up!!

Seriously though, mum’s pension is the amount the government think she should be able to live on. AA is to cover the costs of disability. NONE of it is set at a level with extra for saving or being Lady Bountiful!!

Your are there 24/7 for mum. A long time ago, it was agreed with Social Services that when my son with learning difficulties came home, he should give me £100 a week “housekeeping”, with inflation that should be about £120 now.
That’s the same amount my eldest son, an engineer, contributes to the family “pot”. In addition, looking after all our vehicles and the garden (nearly half an acre) is up to him. I never ever have to ask.
That doesn’t include any element of care at all. Locally, care can cost between £10 and £25 per HOUR.

If your sisters do nothing for mum, then don’t let mum save so that when she dies she leaves a sum to be divided equally. That would be so unfair.

Right well I have been thinking about asking for bit more. And yes I realise the savings would be split 3 ways which wrankles when my middle sister would get a third for doing absolutely nothing at all. On one occasion last tear when my mum went to my sisters for 3 weeks, she spent £969, admittedly some of it was for clothes for mum, but there were loads of restaurant Bill’s, food shopping receipts, etc and also letting my mum buy crap that she cant use anymore like wool for knitting, not just one or two balls but 12!! Then I have to find space for all the stuff! And a day after been home mum cant remember anything that’s been bought. So should I use the savings to pay for the respite? As she normally has anything from 1500 to 2k in her current account, on top of what she has in her savings which is less than 10k. I feel guilty if she buys me a plant . Beginning to think I’m been to soft!.

Definitely too soft.
I did things for my mum from 1976 to 2006 without anything for the help I gave. Things only changed when I was widowed and then disabled in an RTA.
I cannot begin to tell you how upset I was to discover that over the years my parents had given my elder brother at least £20,000 that I know of, and my younger brother also thousands, when I got just £20 for Christmas!!!
At one point my husband was made redundant, so we were on Income Support, so not exactly well off. Meanwhile younger brother, wife and 2 kids went on holiday to the Caribbean on CONCORDE!! Brother said it was better for the kids as the trip was shorter.
I’ve learned the hard way that if you don’t stick up for yourself, no one else will.
Incidentally, do you have a dishwasher and a tumble dryer?

SOCIAL SERVICES should pay for the respite, not you, given her level of funding. I’d also suggest mum has a funeral plan of some kind, so that you don’t end up with that bill too.

Yes I’m starting to realise I need to be firmer!! You don’t realise how caring for someone in your own homes affects you till you cant do something go somewhere because of that person.
No I don’t have a dishwasher, it’s actually one of the one jobs mum likes to do :wink: and I don’t have a tumble dryer, not keen on them and no room for one.
God I bet you were mad finding out about the 20k!!! :worried: my mum took out living mortgage in 2005 for nearly 50k ! She never told me or my middle sister…my eldest sister had put her in touch with a financial adviser who she then signed up with, she never paid any of the interest so it just got bigger and bigger, my sister says she didnt know she had borrowed that much thought it was only 5/10k. I cannot see any evidence in my mums old house on wat the money was spent on…she didn’t go on holidays.certainly didn’t spend any on the house.she likes clothes n bags etc, but I’m fairly sure now that my eldest sister probably had a big chunk of it!! But when I asked mum last year when I found out that’s she owed over 100k felt sick…she said she cudnt remember!!! But when I think back my sister got a new bathroom and conservatory I always wondered how they paid for it as they were always pleading poverty…I cant prove it but have my suspicions…family eh !!! :open_mouth: mum us paying monthly into a funeral plan think it only has a couple of months left and its paid for…and she also has two very small life insurances that would cover the shortfall if she should die before the plan is paid.

If mum is going to have a financial assessment the council will want to know where all that money went!

The living mortgage my mum took out was 15 years ago, it’s what she spent it on we don’t know, and she now says she cant remember, I’m fairly sure my sister got a chunk, but cant prove it. Mum never paid any of the interest so the mortgage got bigger n bigger ( high interest rate) so when we found out about it last year the mortgage was only slightly less than the house was worth. When the house was sold last December the proceeds of the sale paid the mortgage off and the balance went into mums savings account. We have all the relevant paperwork of anyone needs to see it!.ie ss. I’m wondering how yo approach mum about giving us abit more money to household costs, do I get her to put something in writing? Don’t want my sister thinking in just taking money from her, I was thinking £100 a week, she gives us 50 at the moment…I can just hear my sisters saying they wouldn’t expect any money for looking after mum, the extra would be lovely would mean we could actually save for a decent holiday. ! Just gate asking for money :silly:

It sounds like your sister has already had it!!

You have given up a lot of freedom to care for mum. Her “hotel costs” would be at least £120 a week, food, light, heat, carpets, etc. etc. PLUS something for petrol, car wear and tear when you go out, current SSD rate is about 45p per mile. Just think how much you would earn as a paid carer on minimum wage!

Hi bowlingbun
Thank you for that,
I was thinking of 100 for now then putting it up in winter to 120 to cover the extra coal we have to buy, and she can also give us the winter fuel allowance she gets.
It’s just breaching the subject I’m nervous about. And fo I get her to put something in writing to say she agrees to it then my sisters cant say I’m taking money my mum didnt know about?

It’s none of your sister’s business. I would suggest mum sets up a standing order into your bank account, so then you are “squeaky clean”.

If you follow BB’s excellent suggestions , be very wary IF you are claiming any income related benefits :


Hi Chris.
I claim carers allowance that’s all. I don’t work and mum pays me £50 per week by direct debit.
So will I be doing something wrong to accept an extra 50 per week?
Confused now and worried?
Mum used to pay me the 50 in cash but I thought it would be better to pay via Debit into bank then its transparent… and also I lice in middle of nowhere so not easy to keep going g to get cash.
I’m now wondering if cash would be better :thinking::thinking::thinking: help…unsure wether to ask for a increase? And how it should be paid ? Any advise would be great.

No real problem … unless … with that additional income , it takes you into income tax territory.