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Elderly mum made disasterous decision.

(136 Posts)
Soontobe60 Fri 14-Feb-20 22:07:28

My mum and stepdad lived at the other end of the country to me up until yesterday. He has dementia and can't be left alone at all. I've not seen them for 3 months. They've been trying to move near to me and my siblings for 6 months and yesterday was the moving day. They had arranged for their furniture to go into storage for a few days to give us time to sort out their new home, and told me they had booked a hotel for the week.

Well, turns out that's not quite true! They've arrived with nowhere to stay, expecting one of us to put them up, but as step dad can't do stairs, that's a no no as we all live in houses with stairs! So at 4pm today I arranged a hotel for them for the weekend. Mum felt unable to drive anymore so I collected them from my brothers and took them to the hotel. En route, she told me that they hadn't yet had the money from their buyer, even though she had moved into their flat yesterday as soon as they left. Not only that, but the purchase of their new property hadn't gone through yet either! It seems like they are temporarily homeless! If I'd have known this I'd have told them to stay put!

Mum is not the easiest person to get on with at the best of times. She shouted at me tonight because I wouldn't let her smoke in my car. She shouted at her DH because he was walking slowly but he can't walk any faster. After dropping them off at the hotel, I just sat in my car and wept. My DH and I have just spent two years looking after my MIL, and only yesterday scattered her ashes as she passed away in January. We both agreed that looking after her had taken a toll on us both and although we were sad at her death, it was also a relief. (Her quality of life was just really bad).
Now I just feel that the same thing is happening again but instead of looking after a gentle, kind MIL who never demanded anything, I'm going to be looking after a cantankerous mother and possibly a step father who I have hardly got a relationship with. And I feel crap for thinking that way! I can feel my blood pressure going through the roof.

Ohyesiam Fri 14-Feb-20 22:15:12

Sounds like a nightmare op.
Can you contact your council tomorrow about emergency housing?

colinsleftnipple Fri 14-Feb-20 22:20:12

@Ohyesiam they won't be eligible for emergency housing they're intentionally homeless.

What an awful situation OP. You have siblings, don't take al of this on yourself.

Does anyone have power of attorney?

Ohyesiam Fri 14-Feb-20 22:23:24

Well it’s kind of intentional, but if she were thinking straight she wouldn’t have done it.

Drum2018 Fri 14-Feb-20 22:25:54

Calm down a moment. You are not going to have to look after them so get that idea out of your head. You have siblings nearby so you can get together and see what can be done regarding the accommodation. She has royally fucked up letting the buyer move in without full payment. How did that even happen. The estate agent should not have handed over keys.

Get together with your siblings asap. Get your mother to tell you everything that has happened and where exactly the house purchase and sale are at. Ultimately she will have to sort it out, starting by calling her solicitor on Monday morning to see where their house purchase stands. Until that house is ready they will just have to stay in a hotel.

Weenurse Fri 14-Feb-20 22:28:41

Does anyone have POA so they can start to fix this mess?

Soontobe60 Fri 14-Feb-20 22:30:50


Are you my DH? He said the same thing almost word for word! I know it's not all on me, but I'm the only one who doesn't work, having retired in December, so I know I may well bear the brunt of the help. Both of them need to see the GP, step dads meds will run out in a week but they won't be ale to register with a GP without an address! Hopefully the gin I bough tonight my way back home will keep me calm til Monday 😳

Soontobe60 Fri 14-Feb-20 22:31:40

We don't have PoA, dm doesn't think we'd need to have it!

Mlou32 Fri 14-Feb-20 22:32:04

Are you sure this isn't just a ploy by her to get one of you to take them in and provide a certain level of care?

Neolara Fri 14-Feb-20 22:32:28

So they still own their "old" house but have allowed the buyers to move in? The buyers haven't paid yet? I'd get their solicitor onto that asap and get the buyers out. If necessary, go and move into the old house yourself this weekend to make things so uncomfortable for the buyers that they get out. Presumably, your parents and the buyers have exchanged?

Sycamoretrees Fri 14-Feb-20 22:45:12

Is it possibly your Mum has got confused about the house situation and the solicitor has the money? Sounds like your Mum may be in the early stages of dementia too. Hope the situation becomes clearer soon.

PermanentTemporary Fri 14-Feb-20 22:53:09

Oh God what a nightmare.

Tbh it sounds a bit as though your mother has burned out looking after your stepdad.

It might be worth registering them at your GP surgery as visitors, if the surgery will do that- some will some won't. But I'm concerned that their plan is for you to make their lives work.

Drum2018 Fri 14-Feb-20 22:55:51

I'd be looking at care homes or assisted living in your area asap and have a bit of research done in case things go tits up. You could be sitting on your arse watching day time tv all day and still not have to take on their care. Seriously you need to get out of that mindset. After my mum died my dad was unable to live alone. Neither myself or my siblings could/would have taken on his care. He went into a nursing home. It wasn't ideal for him but at least he was safe, warm, fed and looked after. If your mother even hints at moving in with any of you, then give her information on local assisted living/care homes and assure her you will visit her regularly. That might give her the boost she needs to sort this mess out.

MethodToThisMadness Fri 14-Feb-20 22:59:00

If your stepfather has dementia, he is a homeless vulnerable adult and may be eligible for support- either through the council or otherwise. I hope someone else with more knowledge may be along soon.

Canklesforankles Fri 14-Feb-20 23:02:54

That sounds tough. I’d have cried too.
Would sheltered housing be possible if their purchase doesn’t happen?

Atthebottomofthegarden Fri 14-Feb-20 23:12:38

Sheltered housing sounds like the best solution, but of course nothing can be done until you know what has happened with their house. You won’t be able to get hold of the solicitor at the weekend but you can probably talk to the Estate Agents who will definitely know whether the sale went through or not.

Atthebottomofthegarden Fri 14-Feb-20 23:13:20

Oh and 💐 OP, I’m sorry you have to deal with this.

AutumnRose1 Fri 14-Feb-20 23:36:57

OP I’m so sorry this is happening

The first thing I’m wondering is if she’s telling the truth

She has capacity so I’d ask her what her plan is. Perhaps all siblings go to hotel together and ask?

Babybel90 Fri 14-Feb-20 23:37:29

Who are their solicitors for the house sale and how did the ‘buyer’ get the keys, they’re usually handed over by the estate agent, and I’d be surprised if they’d do that without having their commission payment in their bank first.

If the buyer really is in without having handed over the cash I’d be very concerned.

I’d recommend talking to your siblings and only discussing this with your mother as a group so you’re not left shouldering the burden.

Soontobe60 Sun 16-Feb-20 20:55:45

Thanks for all your responses. It's been a hard weekend! It seems my stepfather (SF) is much more poorly than we first thought. He's barely able to walk and is incontinent. He has to be fed. He can smoke, and does so constantly! Dm is convinced that when she speaks to the solicitor n the morningnit will all be sorted and she can move in to her new bungalow in the afternoon!
My dsis drove over to the new place this afternoon, she said its in a very bad state, having been empty for months. Dm seems to think we will all rally round tomorrow and redecorate???
At this rate, I'll be an alcoholic by Friday!

Sycamoretrees Mon 17-Feb-20 00:34:53

Sounds tough! Hope the finances and the house situation get sorted tomorrow. Take the rest one bite at a time, trying to deal with everything at the same time is just too overwhelming. Sounds like you're going to need all your strength for fighting for the support they (and you) need. In my experience you've got to be very blunt about what they need and what you can and can't help with. Keep posting back here if you need help with staying firm or just need to vent.

PragmaticWench Mon 17-Feb-20 15:09:19

How are things going with the house sale @Soontobe60?

Soontobe60 Tue 18-Feb-20 19:37:04


Not great! DM spoke to her solicitor yesterday then told me that everything had gone through and asked me to collect the keys to the new bungalow this morning. Drove over to the estate agents first thing to collect them, DB had organised for the furniture to be brought out of storage this afternoon but dm got it wrong. EA knew nothing, I spent an hour in there whilst they phoned round to find out. Seems that dm had been told that the solicitor had all the final,paperwork and it would exchange today, complete tomorrow!
Meanwhile overnight dm (who along with her DH has landed on my DB) has had what sounds like a panic attack, took it upon herself to phone 111 and was told to go to the local walk n centre at noon. I took her, spent 2 hours there, we were told she needed to go to a+e urgently as she's showing signs of severe dehydration. Called at dbs on the way to make sure her DH was ok, wherein she ended up screaming at me, accused me of lying and refused to go. My dsis turned up, tried to persuade her, she got screamed at too.
So no hospital visit, no house move, DB at his wits end, dm becoming more unreasonable probably because of dehydration and her refusal to even speak to me and my dsis.
Al in all, it's great!!!

64sNewName Tue 18-Feb-20 19:40:51

Bloody hell OP gingingin

Not at this stage yet myself, but I can see it approaching round the corner. I fervently hope things improve for you

AutumnRose1 Tue 18-Feb-20 19:47:38

OP is your mother mentally healthy?

If she is, I would leave her to it. It sounds like attention seeking. It could be extreme stress but then she’d need to change her attitude before I helped out.

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