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Mom is burned out from caring for my grandmother and aunt

Answered by David Troxel

November 13, 2014

My mother contacted me last night about my grandmother and aunt.

My grandmother suffers from dementia and my aunt lives with her and was never officially diagnosed, but we believe she has had schizophrenia most of her life. My mom travels 40 miles each way to ensure they have groceries, get to their doctor’s appointments, etc. and she’s burnt out from the responsibility of taking care of them.

Can you please send me any resources that can:

  1. decrease my grandmother’s bills
  2. provide additional in-home care for them a few days of the week without costing a lot
  3. a list of charity organizations that can assist my mother with taking care of them
  4. free counseling support for my mom

We cannot turn my grandmother’s home over to Medicaid because eventually we will sell the home and it will help support my aunt.

Thank you so much for your help. They live in Illinois, and I live in California. I would love to help them in any way I can.

Illinois is a state rich in resources for elders. I would start with the Alzheimer’s Association office closest to your family and set up a meeting with one of their family counselors. They should know various options for you that can help, including some in-home assistance programs (depending upon finances) that might even pay for some in-home help. Private geriatric care managers also are good at identifying sources of funding and assistance.

Other groups that can provide assistance include your local Area Agency on Aging or perhaps some local group that supports persons like your Aunt who have mental health needs.

You mention a house as an asset and your aunt’s ongoing care needs. Check with an elder law attorney about the situation to see if there are ways you can access Medicaid without losing the house and/or if there are other programs that could help.

I assume that you can travel to Illinois for a visit. Set up appointments with some of these resource groups for you and your mom before you go. This will be a great way to provide assistance and discover options.

Thoughts and stories from others

  1. November 16, 2014 at 07:46 pm
    Posted by Margie

    About the house, can it be sold to another family member so it is no longer in your grandmother's name?
  2. November 16, 2014 at 08:51 am
    Posted by Maryan Carroll

    I work with the department of aging in Illinois but in Will County and they are wonderful. Check what county your Grandmother is in and then start there. GOOD LUCK!
  3. November 14, 2014 at 06:13 pm
    Posted by Ellen

    please could you give me some advise on bathing my mum,mum has recently been moved to a nursing home but the carers are finding very difficult to persuade mum to bathe and change her clothes she becomes very aggressive and physical,I have taken it on myself to help the carers with mums personal needs but I also struggle ,I find it very difficult at times I feel like the bad person ,I battle with mum for an hour or so just to convince to have a bath I come away exhausted and upset .i thought when mum went to a home they would have the training to deal with mums needs,

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