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To think that my sister should have discussed this with me first?

(16 Posts)
ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 20:31:11

My mother has been in a residential home for just over a year. Before she went in she was a fit and active nearly 90 year old. We went through all sorts of in hospital out of hospital, care home, care at home (which didn't work) and into a care home again. We chose her current care home as suitable for her needs and she's been there since last September. She was diagnosed with mild depression (she's had ECT in the past) and moderate dementia. Her short term memory is poor. She can only move now with a walking frame. Last year, though I live 100 miles away and work f/t I had loads of phone calls saying she'd fallen at home, couldn't cope etc. I went down every other week to check on her.

Last January my sister and I told her she would have to be prepared for the fact that we would have to let out the house or sell it to pay the care home fees. She was very upset and said she wanted to go home. We said she would have to put that in motion herself but of course she didn't do that as it really wasn't possible. Since then we have been clearing the house, taking possessions by agreement and doing work necessary to let it to stave off when we need to sell it to pay the fees (her savings which were all over the place) have nearly run out. We have joint Power of Attorney.

Now I have to say that I get on with my mum much better than my sister does. She will not see her without my brother in law or my niece in attendance because of previous arguments and bad feeling. I see her alone and spend lots of time with her. I go to the home and spend a good 2 hours at a time with her.

I got a text last Monday from my sister saying that she told my mum last Saturday that all her possessions had been cleared and the house had been let. My mum is apparently very upset. Next weekend I'm meeting with my sister to transfer some money, but afterwards I'm going to have to face my mother's upset on my own.

Am I unreasonable to think that my sister should have discussed this with me, and if we were going to tell her, we should have told her together?

squeakyfreakytoy Sun 23-Oct-11 20:33:57

I am not sure really. One of you had to tell her and it was never going to be easy or have a happy acceptance.

elinorbellowed Sun 23-Oct-11 20:39:33

Is she your elder sister? Was she trying to take charge and make your life easier? Maybe she was thinking that if she was the bad guy it would be easier for your relationship with your mum? I say this as an eldest, bossy sister.

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 20:39:58

Fair point squeaky

I always value your POV by the way. I just think we should have told her together if we were going to do it or she she should have talked to me about how we were going to do it.

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 20:40:51

elinor she's my younger sister.

FabbyChic Sun 23-Oct-11 20:43:35

Really your mother should have been told BEFORE you let it out not after, I understand you have Power of Attorney but this is her home you are talking about, whilst she may be old and not in full benefit of her faculties, doing things first and telling her after is wrong.

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 20:45:50

Fabby, we told her before we did it. It's in the OP.

squeakyfreakytoy Sun 23-Oct-11 20:48:00

Sooty, telling her together could have backfired anyway. She may have decided you were both conspiring against her. This way you get to play "good cop". Not that your sister is "bad cop", but your mum may feel that way at the moment, and you can be the one to smooth it over a bit.

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 20:49:45

True, but I'm not looking forward to it!

FabbyChic Sun 23-Oct-11 20:50:34

But did you tell her it was imminent or when? Surely you would have said your house is being rented out next week we have found tenants and we promise they will look after it? Did you consider taking her round the house for the last time before you emptied it so she could say her goodbyes to her memories? Did you allow her to take momentoes that she wanted with her?

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 20:55:01

Yes, we told her it was imminent. It would have happened sooner but my BIL was rushed into hospital and needed a quadruple heart bypass. Yes, we asked her if there was anything she wanted. We were advised by the home that taking her back there would distress her, and we agreed. We have saved things like photos which I can go through with her her when things have settled down.

Oakmaiden Sun 23-Oct-11 20:57:55

If she knew it was imminent then I can't see why it is a problem that your sister has told her it has happened now?

squeakyfreakytoy Sun 23-Oct-11 20:58:38

You can stress that the house is only being let out, and has not been sold, and in some circumstances (this being one, I would say), a white lie or two is also fine.. you could say her furniture is in storage.

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 22:56:10

I'm not sure it will make too much difference to her whether it's let out or sold: strangers are in it.

I suppose I'm upset because I found it hard too. When I was divorced my house had to be cleared and I'm still coming to terms with that.

My sister and I are different really. My dad died 30 years ago but when we were clearing the house my sister was quite unemotional until we had to chuck his camera and cine films: she cried buckets then.

My feelings about my father would take a whole new thread...

squeakyfreakytoy Sun 23-Oct-11 23:01:27

Clearing a house is never easy. Especially if it was your childhood home too.

I had no choice but to sell my mums house after she died, as we live 250 miles away and relocating was never an option. But the last day before we handed the keys to the estate agent, I was numb.

The new owners have extended it, and it is hardly recognisable any more.. (it was a beautiful 1907 built house with all its original features and had been kept to a period style decor wise too. I see the house once a year and it still upsets me that it isnt my home anymore, even though I moved out 20 years ago.

ilovesooty Sun 23-Oct-11 23:02:24

Thanks squeaky

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