Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

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Jan
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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Jan » Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:50 am

Nords, I am so sorry for your loss. From your writings, I almost feel as if I knew him. Peace to your family.
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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby circular » Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:08 am

Nords, that rapid change must have come as something of a shock. It goes without saying how lucky he was to have you as such a conscientious caregiver, going so far as to share your knowledge with others, so his life can have beneficial ripple effects he may not even have known about.
Some neuropsychologists claim that Alzheimer's makes you more of what you already are. Rather than feeling sad, I'd like to note that for the last nine years Dad has been mostly happier than I've ever known him. He finally freed himself of all his cares and burdens. I didn't enjoy his journey but I'm glad we could be there to help and to spend the time with him.

This is what I see in my LO also. It's a bit of a relief, in the context of all else having to do with this disease that's so hard, to see who they really are under all the anxiety and concerns and defenses. If we could all just learn this before we're ill.

Peace to you ...
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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby SusanJ » Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:18 am

Nords, thinking of you during this time of mixed emotions. Honored to be let into your life enough to see how much fought for your dad and how your dad was able to find happiness. Sending hugs to you and peace for your family.

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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby ru442 » Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:14 am

Nords,

This brings back memories of my late father in-law (my second "Dad"), who passed away during the holidays 2 years ago. The rapid decline during his late stage was devastating, and being the holidays my wife, sister in-law, and my self had to provide hospice care for him as there was no one from the hospice service available. We had a crash course in how to care for him, and were there for him 24x7 for 3 days until he passed peacefully. It was a difficult lesson to learn, but we all now feel it was a blessing in disguise as it has made us aware of how to deal with and learn from what happened. Now that I know of my status as a 4/4, it is all the more relevant.

You have my families prayers.

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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Tincup » Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:17 am

Nords,

My thoughts are with you.
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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Lucy5 » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:43 am

Nords, I was so sorry to hear about your Dad. Following your posts, I remember thinking he seemed very much a man of his generation, reminding me of some of the men in my own family. I appreciate all you've shared with us and have learned so much from his story. Knowing that he found peace in his later years must be so comforting for your family. Sending thoughts and prayers your way. Rest in peace, Dean.

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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Julie G » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:58 am

So sorry, Nords. How wonderful that you're able to acknowledge the freedom and happiness that he enjoyed in his final years despite the Alzheimer's. It's been an honor to be a part of your family's journey. You've taught me so much that I've been able to apply to my Uncle's care. Thank you, my friend. I'm sending lots of love and peace your way as you navigate your new normal.

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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Nords » Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:56 pm

Thanks, everyone, I appreciate the thoughts and your kind words.

I'm probably still in shock but coping. Submariners joke about finishing the immediate actions for a casualty and then reaching for the procedures manual to do the followup. I'm somewhere in the manual and the followup yet still feeling a little numb & detached. Not much relief for us yet.

This morning I spent 3.5 hours on the phone with a dozen different agencies & companies, but all the initial notification calls are done. Ironically Dad's lawyer died a few months ago (he never retired) but the new lawyer has the will and will take care of filing it with the probate court.

Once we get the death certificate from the hospice doctor or the mortuary then we can move on the rest of the paperwork. While I'm waiting on that there's the conservator reports, the obituary for the newspapers, the letters to Dad's close friends... a long list of forms & writing to fill the hours.

An interesting side effect of the notifications is that I was immediately locked out of all of Dad's financial accounts. It looks like I'll be paying a few thousand dollars in end-of-life medical expenses but we'll reimburse that when the funds are eventually released. This will work out for us but I can see why some families have set up a joint checking account with a $2500-$5000 in it, so that after one of the account holders dies the other can still access the funds in it. When the Transfer On Death / Payable On Death paperwork is finally processed it'll be more like a series of transactions (one brokerage account here, a CD from there, another CD from another bank) rather than one big transfer.

cwicker wrote:Thank you Nords. I just happened upon this thread. My father is also an electrical engineer in the Navy who started showing symptoms in his mid-70s with sharp decline in 2011.
Though my father, an engineer is trying to "fix" things and is destroying furniture and plumbing.

Heck, I destroy furniture and plumbing now. I can only imagine what I'll accomplish with all this experience when I'm older...

cwicker wrote:Like your dad, despite his mother being in the same situation, he refused to plan on such a scenario. How fortunate that your dad had at least LTC.

It's good that Dad had LTC insurance, but we've also just confirmed that he had enough to self-insure. (With his pension and Social Security, he probably had enough assets for another 5-6 years in the care facility before Medicaid.) The insurance company put us caregivers through bureaucratic hell, though, and greatly boosted the stress.

One of my projects will be adding up all of Dad's LTC expenses and then seeing how much my spouse and I would have to set aside to reasonably self-insure. I don't want to subject my spouse to the treatment that I got from Dad's LTC insurance company.
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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Tincup » Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:57 am

I've been involved in managing the care and estates of 3 deceased people: my parents and my first wife's grandmother. I'm still involved with this with my first wife's mother.

First I should note that there was total family agreement in these situations and in my parents' case, I'm an only child. This makes things much simpler. Setting up trusts while they were cognitively well made managing their affairs seamless. I wrote these trusts, but had my father (an attorney) review them. Put almost all their assets in these trusts (this allowed them access to some funds in their bank account, but limited the damage if they did something unwise). They were co-trustees during their life, but no change was needed as their mental capacity diminished. For bank accounts, I had a bank power of attorney (POA) and then had a "pay on death" (POD) to the trust. Coupled this with a durable POA (many financial institutions want their own form), medical POA and living will. Everything was pretty seamless. The key is to get this done while everyone is mentally sound.

I've set this up this for my own affairs. The key is a non-contentious family situation and someone who is truly trustworthy, capable and willing to be the trustee & have the POA. If these requirements can be met, it can work well.
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Re: Alzheimer's caregivers, guardians, and conservators

Postby Julie G » Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:58 am

It's good that Dad had LTC insurance, but we've also just confirmed that he had enough to self-insure. (With his pension and Social Security, he probably had enough assets for another 5-6 years in the care facility before Medicaid.) The insurance company put us caregivers through bureaucratic hell, though, and greatly boosted the stress.

One of my projects will be adding up all of Dad's LTC expenses and then seeing how much my spouse and I would have to set aside to reasonably self-insure. I don't want to subject my spouse to the treatment that I got from Dad's LTC insurance company.

No hurry, Nords, but I'd appreciate learning a little bit about your problems with your Dad's LTC whenever you get a chance. My Uncle has his LTC through Genworth and I've been stunned at some of their tactics to get out of honoring his policy. Even though he's been drawing benefits for several years, they recently CANCELLED his policy because they decided he didn't pay a premium in full four years ago. I've spent hours and hours on the phone to get to the bottom of the problem only to learn that it was a "computer glitch" and may happen again :shock:. It is horrific to see the way he's (we've) been treated after paying dearly for this service.


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