Author Topic: My mother (Sigh)  (Read 11104 times)

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
My mother (Sigh)
« on: June 16, 2017, 06:28:44 AM »
Warning:  this is more of a vent so is definitely a bit all over the place.

I've posted about my mom before but it's been a while.  I was hoping she'd have a job by now but she doesn't.  (Wishful thinking.)

Long story short, she's 58 and I'm 38...she lives about 4 hours away from me in a neighboring state.  I just moved back closer to her in the south after being in the midwest for about 5 years.

She's got some moderate (at best) longstanding clinical depression issues and has been hoarding since my brother and I left the house many years ago.  House has virtually never had any repairs or maintenance in the 25 years she's lived in it.  She's always been a minimum wage worker although her last few years before being laid off from her plant job in 2013 she did make it up to $10 an hour.  I'm grateful she was able to buy a house and keep a roof over our head as teens but things have been falling apart all around her now for years (translation: house could be condemned IMO).

Due to some other undiagnosed personality issues (IMO) she is now estranged from her sister and brother that live in the same town as her...the sister had been a pretty good source of financial help in the past and the brother is a handyman.  For reasons I can't explain other than grudges are being held, she isn't speaking to either of them for like the past 2 years.  Also, my only sibling, my 32 year old brother, just moved back to the states after being out of the country mostly due to the military since about age 19.  Unfortunately when the 3 of us met up/reunited for vacation last summer she did something that pushed him away now so he is not speaking to her whatsoever and I don't know if/when that will change.

I started this post because:

A few weeks ago I texted to ask how she was doing and she asked for help with her car which had been sitting in a shop for 2 weeks (unbeknownst to me).  She never asks me for help.  Long story short, I rented a car (I don't own one) and drove to see her/go to the shop.  They wanted $900 to repair a bunch of stuff when it needed like $200 worth of repairs TOPS.  I found this out because I got my uncle who she doesn't talk to involved and he agreed to take the car and fix it over the weekend I was there.  So I arranged getting it towed from the shop, paying the shop a $150 diagnostic fee for nothing, and paid my uncle to do the car repairs.  I paid her electric bill and bought her a $100 gas card and prepaid phone card.  I gave her a few hundred in cash and told her I could help her with bills for the next 2 months.  I made that VERY clear that I was only committing to 2 months because I don't want to enable her.  She has not been looking for work since being laid off 4 years ago and I felt bad her car broke down supposedly on the way to an interview-if she's interviewing that means she's desperate for money IMO because I hadn't heard her speak of interviews in a long time.  She got $25K when her father passed in 2014 and I think that's how she's lived until now.  I cannot have normal conversations with her...she is just a very difficult person so we argue a lot when we're together (have you seen how hard some of the personalities are of the people on that Hoarders show??). 

Anyways, today I asked her how much she needed to get through July so she's going to give me an amount this weekend.  But I had also asked if ever rescheduled that interview she didn't make it to because her car broke down and the answer just now was "negative".  I'm so HOT right now that she isn't doing anything to help herself!  I mean, 'maybe' she is but just isn't telling me because she does have a tendency to keep many things super secret but IMO if she was she would have had 'something'...babysitting, dog walking...anything.  She gets a $12 pension check and that's her only income...no retirement or other form of savings whatsoever and the Hyundai I just got fixed of hers (a car gifted to her...pretty much all of her cars have been gifted) is on its last leg.  From what I gather, her monthly bills are 'something' like this:

-Electric: $70
-Car Gas: $100
-Car Insurance: $40 (Totally guessing..she is avoiding talking to me about this so she might be driving without it)
-Pre-paid phone cards: $40
-PO Box for mail: $4
-Laundrymat: $80

When I tried to have a conversation with her about the bills this is all I could gather from what I remember, as she got pissed at me for asking and basically implied I don't have the right to ask her about her bills just because I was paying for her car repair at the time.  I don't know whether to only help her through July and do the 'sink or swim' thing with her and just let her figure it all out (I do believe she will end up with another utility bill not working and just be without lights if I don't help past July) or if I should just give up on the prospect of her finding any type of work and just send her like $400 a month forever.  Quite naturally I'm leaning towards the 'just help through July like you said you would' and STOP WORRYING so much because this situation is just out of control.  But TBH, I struggle HARD with knowing I'm living a comparatively good life yet my mother 'will likely' go without if I don't help her at this point.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2017, 06:32:09 AM by EconDiva »

MayDay

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4374
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2017, 06:51:51 AM »
How much does 400$ a month mean to you?

Was she a good mother who put you first when you were a child?

I'm usually in favor of helping a person get their mental health treated, etc, but not giving money. However 400$ a month is pretty cheap, and if it lets you sleep at night you'll have less tress just writing a check then trying to get her to get a job or go to the doctor.

Just depends on if you feel you want to help her.

Vindicated

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1114
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Indianapolis
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2017, 06:53:16 AM »
I'm so sorry for the difficulties with your Mother.  I empathize so much, even though I can't really offer a simple resolution.

My parents have no savings, but my Dad should be getting a small pension in a few years.  My Mother stopped working her minimum wage jobs a few years ago, and now can barely walk, and has stepped up her alcoholism to a new level.  I'm afraid my Mom is heading in a very similar direction to yours, but luckily my Dad is still working and making decent money.  If something happens to my Dad, my Mom will be my problem.  I actually drove her to the ER last night because my Dad was working out of town, and she said her legs were going numb.  At least she won't be drinking for a day or two.

I'll share the only idea I have for this possible scenario:  Move to a home with at least one downstairs bedroom, and having her move in with us.  She's just turned 58, so we're 7 years out from medicaid.  Hopefully nothing more serious will happen before then, and if it comes to this, she can go on medicaid and go into a long-term care home.

I really hope my Dad stays healthy, but he turns 60 this year, and still works as a concrete finisher.

Good luck to you, and I hope you'll keep us informed of what happens.

slappy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 977
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2017, 06:56:07 AM »
It sounds like you would really only be sending her $400 a month until she can get SS at 62. Do you have any idea what her SS benefits would be? I know they will be low already and take a hit for taking them early, but it doesn't sound like she needs much, so that might be ok. 

It's definitely a frustrating situation. I'd probably do the $400 a month until age 62, assuming you can afford it.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2017, 07:08:30 AM »
How much does 400$ a month mean to you?

Was she a good mother who put you first when you were a child?

I'm usually in favor of helping a person get their mental health treated, etc, but not giving money. However 400$ a month is pretty cheap, and if it lets you sleep at night you'll have less tress just writing a check then trying to get her to get a job or go to the doctor.

Just depends on if you feel you want to help her.

Well...I was pretty dumb all through my 20s with money.  I just started making better money over the past 3 years or so. 

Correction:  I just started doing better at saving money over the past 3 years or so.  Better late than never I guess.  I moved in with a family member to save even more money but I really want to be able to 'save' that money and not give it away...I think I'm in a place right now where I would resent sending $5K a month to her when I really need that in house downpayment, savings and retirement funds.  I'm just having trouble wrapping my head around doing that when she could make enough doing something like say babysitting to keep the lights on.

ETA:  I think she was a good mother in that she did the best she could do.  She kept a roof over our heads.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2017, 07:14:10 AM »
I'm so sorry for the difficulties with your Mother.  I empathize so much, even though I can't really offer a simple resolution.

My parents have no savings, but my Dad should be getting a small pension in a few years.  My Mother stopped working her minimum wage jobs a few years ago, and now can barely walk, and has stepped up her alcoholism to a new level.  I'm afraid my Mom is heading in a very similar direction to yours, but luckily my Dad is still working and making decent money.  If something happens to my Dad, my Mom will be my problem.  I actually drove her to the ER last night because my Dad was working out of town, and she said her legs were going numb.  At least she won't be drinking for a day or two.

I'll share the only idea I have for this possible scenario:  Move to a home with at least one downstairs bedroom, and having her move in with us.  She's just turned 58, so we're 7 years out from medicaid.  Hopefully nothing more serious will happen before then, and if it comes to this, she can go on medicaid and go into a long-term care home.

I really hope my Dad stays healthy, but he turns 60 this year, and still works as a concrete finisher.

Good luck to you, and I hope you'll keep us informed of what happens.

I'm also sorry to hear about your mom and the situation with her.  My mom has extremely high blood pressure (it runs like 200/100) but she doesn't believe in going to the doctor so any health related situations in the near future could prove interesting to say the least.

TBH a house purchase, if done, is a few years out.  So I have time to think about it but I have wondered whether to get something that would allow her to live with me or not.  I'm totally undecided on this as I go back and forth between getting the cheapest condo I can possible can (maybe even saving up enough cash to pay for it) versus getting a larger home which would cost me more money in order to potentially house her in it in the future.  However, the good part about that is I could get a roommate to help pay the bills until then.  She would definitely have to be in a situation where she was forced out of her home to live with me though...there's no way she would ever want to part from all of her stuff.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2017, 07:16:48 AM »
It sounds like you would really only be sending her $400 a month until she can get SS at 62. Do you have any idea what her SS benefits would be? I know they will be low already and take a hit for taking them early, but it doesn't sound like she needs much, so that might be ok. 

It's definitely a frustrating situation. I'd probably do the $400 a month until age 62, assuming you can afford it.

I really think she should hold off on taking it early don't you agree? 

Then again, it's unlikely she'll have any income until that kicks in.  I have absolutely no clue how much her SS will be and I'm not well versed in SS in the least.  I wouldn't know whether to guesstimate $50 a month or $350 that she'd be getting. 

slappy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 977
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2017, 07:23:38 AM »
It sounds like you would really only be sending her $400 a month until she can get SS at 62. Do you have any idea what her SS benefits would be? I know they will be low already and take a hit for taking them early, but it doesn't sound like she needs much, so that might be ok. 

It's definitely a frustrating situation. I'd probably do the $400 a month until age 62, assuming you can afford it.

I really think she should hold off on taking it early don't you agree? 

Then again, it's unlikely she'll have any income until that kicks in.  I have absolutely no clue how much her SS will be and I'm not well versed in SS in the least.  I wouldn't know whether to guesstimate $50 a month or $350 that she'd be getting.

Normally I would say yes, but in this case it might make sense.  Unless she does end up getting some sort of employment that can sustain her until FRA. You/she can run the numbers on ssa.gov.  I'm sure it will be a low amount, based on what you've said about her earning history. And of course she will get less by taking it early. But if she doesn't need much anyway, maybe you can get her off your payroll at 62 rather than 67. 

doublethinkmoney

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 80
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2017, 07:23:52 AM »
That's a crappy situation and it's sucks you are having to now "be the parent". Seems you need to come to a couple hard truths to make the best decision.

1. Clearly she is not going to help herself due to some mental health issues and not looking for a job for 4 years or maintaining a decent home.

2. Can you live with letting her sink? If not, you have to help for your own self. Otherwise, stay true to what you said about only 2 months of help.

Obviously she is difficult but would it be possible to have her move in with you or get a place with a separate in law apartment attached. That way the financial strain isn't too much? (It may get worse and end up to this if the house is that bad)

Either way, if you decide to help it most likely will be never ending. If she raised you well and did her best, it's your turn to help her.  Also I would see if you can get your bother to help as well even if he doesn't want to speak to her both siblings should be responsible not just you. Good luck.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2017, 07:30:54 AM »
That's a crappy situation and it's sucks you are having to now "be the parent". Seems you need to come to a couple hard truths to make the best decision.

1. Clearly she is not going to help herself due to some mental health issues and not looking for a job for 4 years or maintaining a decent home.

2. Can you live with letting her sink? If not, you have to help for your own self. Otherwise, stay true to what you said about only 2 months of help.

Obviously she is difficult but would it be possible to have her move in with you or get a place with a separate in law apartment attached. That way the financial strain isn't too much? (It may get worse and end up to this if the house is that bad)

Either way, if you decide to help it most likely will be never ending. If she raised you well and did her best, it's your turn to help her.  Also I would see if you can get your bother to help as well even if he doesn't want to speak to her both siblings should be responsible not just you. Good luck.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I haven't decided if I'm ok with letting her sink 'completely'.  I don't know how much further down things can go...the house is already pretty much a mess and not actually inhabitable but she still lives there. TBH I think I may just do the 2 months and tell her that's it...and then see what she does.  I know, I know she probably won't do anything.  But maybe that'll be kindof a last ditch effort to see if she maybe she actually will help herself out.  Then if she doesn't maybe I'll step in.  I think I would have to just pay the bills and not give any cash at all really.  She has been known to give away money to friends, strangers and her church while letting bills go. 

I don't own a home...I rent and just moved in with a family member.  I did just mention in another post that her moving in with me is unlikely as she wouldn't want to leave all of her stuff.  She'd have to be in a situation where she was forced out of her home in order to consider living with me.  Which is probably best because we really do not get along well in person anymore...I think it would be a horrible scenario with us living together honestly.

doublethinkmoney

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 80
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2017, 07:53:05 AM »
That's a crappy situation and it's sucks you are having to now "be the parent". Seems you need to come to a couple hard truths to make the best decision.

1. Clearly she is not going to help herself due to some mental health issues and not looking for a job for 4 years or maintaining a decent home.

2. Can you live with letting her sink? If not, you have to help for your own self. Otherwise, stay true to what you said about only 2 months of help.

Obviously she is difficult but would it be possible to have her move in with you or get a place with a separate in law apartment attached. That way the financial strain isn't too much? (It may get worse and end up to this if the house is that bad)

Either way, if you decide to help it most likely will be never ending. If she raised you well and did her best, it's your turn to help her.  Also I would see if you can get your bother to help as well even if he doesn't want to speak to her both siblings should be responsible not just you. Good luck.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I haven't decided if I'm ok with letting her sink 'completely'.  I don't know how much further down things can go...the house is already pretty much a mess and not actually inhabitable but she still lives there. TBH I think I may just do the 2 months and tell her that's it...and then see what she does.  I know, I know she probably won't do anything.  But maybe that'll be kindof a last ditch effort to see if she maybe she actually will help herself out.  Then if she doesn't maybe I'll step in.  I think I would have to just pay the bills and not give any cash at all really.  She has been known to give away money to friends, strangers and her church while letting bills go. 

I don't own a home...I rent and just moved in with a family member.  I did just mention in another post that her moving in with me is unlikely as she wouldn't want to leave all of her stuff.  She'd have to be in a situation where she was forced out of her home in order to consider living with me.  Which is probably best because we really do not get along well in person anymore...I think it would be a horrible scenario with us living together honestly.
Yeah I figured she would have to be forced to leave if she did.

Not giving her cash since she tends to "give it away" is an excellent idea. She may not like it but oh well. Pay bills directly and gifts cards to grocery store or gas stations.

I would see how it goes after the 2 months.

It's definitely an emotionally, mentally and financially draining situation. I wish you the best.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

former player

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5409
  • Location: Avalon
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2017, 07:57:59 AM »
Your mother is a hoarder of long standing.  That is not going to be magically cured by her moving into a bedroom in your future home.

I suspect that the only way to really improve her situation is for her to get appropriate mental health treatment for her depression and hoarding disorder.  Is there any way that that could be arranged?  Presumably she is on Medicaid?

If her situation cannot be improved, the only answer that it will deteriorate over time.  I wouldn't give her any money to pay her bills at the moment - any unpaid bills are the problem of the person who isn't being paid rather than yours, and two months probably isn't going to make a big difference.  I'd give her just enough for food and gas until she finds a job or the two months have expired.  Cards rather than cash sounds a good idea.  If she hasn't found a job after two months you will need to make another decision, but fortunately that is for another day.

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5208
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2017, 08:12:20 AM »
Are you sure she has any Social Security?  If she did not accumulate enough credits by working, she may get nothing.  Is her state an expanded Medicaid state?  If so, she might qualify.  If not, she may not be eligible.

The best thing would to get the house sold and her into some type of subsidized housing.  She's not eligible for senior housing yet, but it would be a good idea to determine what benefits she will be eligible for later as well as what she is eligible for today in her state of residence.

mm1970

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7831
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2017, 08:16:43 AM »
It sounds like you would really only be sending her $400 a month until she can get SS at 62. Do you have any idea what her SS benefits would be? I know they will be low already and take a hit for taking them early, but it doesn't sound like she needs much, so that might be ok. 

It's definitely a frustrating situation. I'd probably do the $400 a month until age 62, assuming you can afford it.

I really think she should hold off on taking it early don't you agree? 

Then again, it's unlikely she'll have any income until that kicks in.  I have absolutely no clue how much her SS will be and I'm not well versed in SS in the least.  I wouldn't know whether to guesstimate $50 a month or $350 that she'd be getting.
With her blood pressure?  No. Take it as soon as she can.

neo von retorch

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3620
  • Location: SE PA
    • Fi@retorch - personal finance tracking
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2017, 08:17:59 AM »
Mathematically, it only makes sense to wait until you're 67 to take SS if you've got really good odds on living past 84. Otherwise, the extra 5 years of SS more than make up for the reduced monthly amount.

My mom did a lot of things like this. She hoarded. She was picky about jobs, but terrible with money. She used to "borrow" money, but it was always (inevitably) a gift. But "magically," the less I'd give her, the more she'd figure out how to get by on her own, though there was usually "someone" she'd take advantage of. She was months behind on rent where she was living. Because her income was usually so grim, when she started taking SS, she was doing OK for herself financially. Unfortunately, she passed away at the age of 64. Due to her apparent health (very overweight for the past 25+ years, allergies, thyroid, joint problems) it was not a complete surprise, just unexpected.

With per personality, and her problems, probably any help is enabling. That's a very personal decision you have to make. I don't regret refusing to give my mother financial help. I have a little regret that I couldn't fix our relationship... but then I remember that it takes two.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2017, 08:37:37 AM »
Your mother is a hoarder of long standing.  That is not going to be magically cured by her moving into a bedroom in your future home.

I suspect that the only way to really improve her situation is for her to get appropriate mental health treatment for her depression and hoarding disorder.  Is there any way that that could be arranged?  Presumably she is on Medicaid?

If her situation cannot be improved, the only answer that it will deteriorate over time.  I wouldn't give her any money to pay her bills at the moment - any unpaid bills are the problem of the person who isn't being paid rather than yours, and two months probably isn't going to make a big difference.  I'd give her just enough for food and gas until she finds a job or the two months have expired.  Cards rather than cash sounds a good idea.  If she hasn't found a job after two months you will need to make another decision, but fortunately that is for another day.

She is not on Medicaid.  She doesn't really do anything for herself health-wise/physically...meaning she is dead set against seeing doctors.  Can't go into why but she doesn't believe in going to doctors so she's never really had one.  Has never ever done check ups or anything like that.  She said she doesn't have a problem and doesn't need any type of counseling or assistance and had done counseling before and vowed no one would 'ever make her do it again' so it's pretty safe to say that she will not ever be seeing a healthcare professional unless it is a dire emergency unfortunately.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2017, 08:42:32 AM »
Are you sure she has any Social Security?  If she did not accumulate enough credits by working, she may get nothing.  Is her state an expanded Medicaid state?  If so, she might qualify.  If not, she may not be eligible.

The best thing would to get the house sold and her into some type of subsidized housing.  She's not eligible for senior housing yet, but it would be a good idea to determine what benefits she will be eligible for later as well as what she is eligible for today in her state of residence.

Well that's a good question.  She has worked up until age 54 so I'd think she'd get a little something right?

She lives in South Carolina; I would have to look into all of this.  I know she's relatively healthy so she wouldn't be selling the house today or anything as she has no incentive to do so.

Dave1442397

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1161
  • Location: NJ
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2017, 08:49:55 AM »
I think I would have to just pay the bills and not give any cash at all really.  She has been known to give away money to friends, strangers and her church while letting bills go.

This, definitely. If she's that bad at managing her life, giving cash would be a mistake.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2017, 08:51:19 AM »
Mathematically, it only makes sense to wait until you're 67 to take SS if you've got really good odds on living past 84. Otherwise, the extra 5 years of SS more than make up for the reduced monthly amount.

My mom did a lot of things like this. She hoarded. She was picky about jobs, but terrible with money. She used to "borrow" money, but it was always (inevitably) a gift. But "magically," the less I'd give her, the more she'd figure out how to get by on her own, though there was usually "someone" she'd take advantage of. She was months behind on rent where she was living. Because her income was usually so grim, when she started taking SS, she was doing OK for herself financially. Unfortunately, she passed away at the age of 64. Due to her apparent health (very overweight for the past 25+ years, allergies, thyroid, joint problems) it was not a complete surprise, just unexpected.

With per personality, and her problems, probably any help is enabling. That's a very personal decision you have to make. I don't regret refusing to give my mother financial help. I have a little regret that I couldn't fix our relationship... but then I remember that it takes two.

Thank you for sharing your story.  It really resonates with me and makes me feel better to know I'm not the only one who has dealt with something like this.  It really is all a bit complicated with the dynamics of her behavior intertwined with the impact it has on all aspects of her life and how it spills over into mine and so many ways.  The financial part of all of this is probably where I've had the least amount of impact. 

Anyhow, it does surely help to be reminded that it does take two.  I often feel helpless or less than since there's so much I simply can't fix.  But then I remind myself I'm doing more than anyone else to try to help.

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5208
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #19 on: June 16, 2017, 08:59:21 AM »
If you can get her Social Security number, you can set up an account for her at SSA.gov.  Her earnings history will be in there and you can estimate her payment.  If she worked for a government agency that did not pay into Social Security, that will likely reduce her annuity.  Otherwise, you can get a reasonable estimate.

slappy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 977
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #20 on: June 16, 2017, 09:03:50 AM »
If you can get her Social Security number, you can set up an account for her at SSA.gov.  Her earnings history will be in there and you can estimate her payment.  If she worked for a government agency that did not pay into Social Security, that will likely reduce her annuity.  Otherwise, you can get a reasonable estimate.

Yes, do this. Then you will have one unknown off the table.

wenchsenior

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2466
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #21 on: June 16, 2017, 09:05:08 AM »
Oh, man.  I feel you, EconDiva.  Both DH's mother and my own posed similar problems (thankfully without the hoarding).  I spent about 3 years freaking out over my mother's situation until we resolved it and those were some very bad years for me, stress wise.

First of all, if she has no income and no assets, she should qualify for at least some state assistance...perhaps utility assistance and food stamps at the very least.

And if she is that low income she might qualify for Medicaid (assuming that EvilGenius McConnell doesn't figure out how to jam through an ACA repeal that guts all the funding for it).  I would recommend trying to get your mother IMMEDIATELY to an appropriate benefit counselor in your state to find out what help she qualifies for.  Even if the GOP passes a health care bill that cuts Medicaid, there is a possibility they will do in a way that 'phases out' so that no new beneficiaries can enroll. Best to try to enroll now.

Re: Housing.  If the house is paid for and she has a mental disorder, I'm not sure what the point of worrying about housing is since she likely will never agree to move unless forced.  Is the house in her name? Are  there any outstanding mortgage or equity loans? Are property taxes up to date?  If the house is in the clear, then I would let that fall way down the list of things to worry about.

If I were you, I would probably first go with her to state benefits counselor.

Then I would help her through the next couple months' bills, with the clear stipulation that she must find some kind of income, even if just grocery bagging at the local supermarket, etc.  Give her a couple month's deadline for this financial assistance, and see what she does.  At this point, you might start to see where the 'barriers' to her functionality are, and it will help you make decisions on how to help.

If she's truly incapacitated by whatever her mental health issues are (like my mother was), she won't get a job and she'll be desperate again at the end of the deadline.  In the case of my own mother in her mid 50s, the issue wasn't that she wouldn't WORK the job if she had it; it was that she wouldn't SEARCH for a job ('walk in' job applications paralyzed her with anxiety and she didn't have a computer/was not computer savvy to apply online).  When that became clear to me, I job hunted on her behalf for a couple months and sent her off to interviews until she landed something.

In my mother's case, a low earning job bought her a few more years of precarious stability.   During that period, I had to think really hard about what I was willing to do to help going forward based on our financial situation and on how cooperative my mother was/would be. My mother was fairly cooperative, so when her situation deteriorated again her early 60s, I made the decision to partially support her going forward more or less permanently.  With DH's mother, who is secretive, stubborn, and living in another state, we have made the decision to not help in any kind of ongoing way, but instead budget several thousand extra $/year as a buffer against the inevitable random emergency requests for money.

Other people on this board have chosen to offer no assistance, or to offer non money assistance only, to parents in similar circumstances.

There is really no right answer, and there's no easy answer unless you have no emotional ties to the parent at all.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope you learn faster than I did that you can't fundamentally force someone to change their behavior. They have to want to change it.  And you need to come to some kind of peace with what you do and how you handle it.


EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #22 on: June 16, 2017, 09:11:53 AM »
If you can get her Social Security number, you can set up an account for her at SSA.gov.  Her earnings history will be in there and you can estimate her payment.  If she worked for a government agency that did not pay into Social Security, that will likely reduce her annuity.  Otherwise, you can get a reasonable estimate.

Hmmm...actually I know her SSN by heart (don't ask me why or how I do).  I will look into this.  Today actually.

She didn't work for any government agencies. 

slappy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 977
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #23 on: June 16, 2017, 09:23:39 AM »
If you can get her Social Security number, you can set up an account for her at SSA.gov.  Her earnings history will be in there and you can estimate her payment.  If she worked for a government agency that did not pay into Social Security, that will likely reduce her annuity.  Otherwise, you can get a reasonable estimate.

Hmmm...actually I know her SSN by heart (don't ask me why or how I do).  I will look into this.  Today actually.

She didn't work for any government agencies.

I know my mom's too.  :)

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #24 on: June 16, 2017, 09:34:34 AM »
Wasn't able to get through the security questions on the SS website.

I remember we needed to check her credit once so I tried to do this online for her but she couldn't verify her own security related info either (the questions about have you ever held a loan from this servicer, have you ever had this phone number, have you ever lived on this street, etc).

Catbert

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1817
  • Location: Southern California
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #25 on: June 16, 2017, 11:48:35 AM »
I don't suppose your mother is a widow?  If so, she could start to collect on his social security at 60. OTOH if she had a marriage lasting at least 10 years, she might get more money collecting half of his social security (not until at least 62).  With untreated blood pressure of 200/100 she should definitely take her SS as early as possible.  I don't want to be mean, but this isn't a recipe for a long life.

Do not under any circumstances have her live with you.  With her hoarding and personality issues that would be disastrous for you.

 


wenchsenior

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2466
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #26 on: June 16, 2017, 05:20:57 PM »
I don't suppose your mother is a widow?  If so, she could start to collect on his social security at 60. OTOH if she had a marriage lasting at least 10 years, she might get more money collecting half of his social security (not until at least 62).  With untreated blood pressure of 200/100 she should definitely take her SS as early as possible.  I don't want to be mean, but this isn't a recipe for a long life.

Do not under any circumstances have her live with you.  With her hoarding and personality issues that would be disastrous for you.

 

Yes...this was about a 300$/month difference in my mother's eventual SS check.  Really big deal when you are on that low of an income.

GreenSheep

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 779
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #27 on: June 16, 2017, 05:39:02 PM »
Call me cold-hearted, but you say you don't get along with her now, she doesn't want to help you help her (discuss bills, etc.), and the best thing you can say about her as a mother is that she kept a roof over your head. I agree with looking into SS, Medicaid, services for the mentally ill, etc., and I think any decent human being would want to do that to help a parent, but if I were you, I wouldn't let my own quality of life take a hit (less $ savings for your own life goals, more emotional agony) just to make the ship she's sinking go a little more slowly. No good mother would want that for her child.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #28 on: June 16, 2017, 06:37:01 PM »
I don't suppose your mother is a widow?  If so, she could start to collect on his social security at 60. OTOH if she had a marriage lasting at least 10 years, she might get more money collecting half of his social security (not until at least 62).  With untreated blood pressure of 200/100 she should definitely take her SS as early as possible.  I don't want to be mean, but this isn't a recipe for a long life.

Do not under any circumstances have her live with you.  With her hoarding and personality issues that would be disastrous for you.

 

Nope...she's never been married.

Paul der Krake

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4861
  • Age: 12
  • Location: UTC-10:00
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #29 on: June 16, 2017, 06:42:47 PM »
What does she do all day to need $100 of gasoline per month?

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #30 on: June 16, 2017, 07:29:57 PM »
What does she do all day to need $100 of gasoline per month?

Well she goes to the laundry mat...a lot.  I can't quite wrap my head around why she goes so often.  It's like the thing she does to get out of the house.  It must be therapeutic for her or something.

But the main thing is church.  Her church is not in her city.  It's about an hour away from her.  I know she goes every Sunday but she probably goes during the week sometimes as well.  Since her car has 200k on it my uncle advised she not do this anymore.  I have no clue if she is heeding that advice right now or not.  Probably not. 

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #31 on: June 16, 2017, 07:32:17 PM »
Call me cold-hearted, but you say you don't get along with her now, she doesn't want to help you help her (discuss bills, etc.), and the best thing you can say about her as a mother is that she kept a roof over your head. I agree with looking into SS, Medicaid, services for the mentally ill, etc., and I think any decent human being would want to do that to help a parent, but if I were you, I wouldn't let my own quality of life take a hit (less $ savings for your own life goals, more emotional agony) just to make the ship she's sinking go a little more slowly. No good mother would want that for her child.

I understand your point of view.

I'm trying not to let my QOL decrease due to this.  Particularly because she can indeed still work and support herself right now. 

I got a contact from a friend of mine who works for the state that I'm going to call next week to look into some assistance.  When I call the electric company I'm also going to ask them about any support they can offer for discounts off of her bill.  I almost feel bad asking because like I said...she could actually work.  But if I'm having to pay the bill.....

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #32 on: June 16, 2017, 07:36:58 PM »
Oh, man.  I feel you, EconDiva.  Both DH's mother and my own posed similar problems (thankfully without the hoarding).  I spent about 3 years freaking out over my mother's situation until we resolved it and those were some very bad years for me, stress wise.

First of all, if she has no income and no assets, she should qualify for at least some state assistance...perhaps utility assistance and food stamps at the very least.

And if she is that low income she might qualify for Medicaid (assuming that EvilGenius McConnell doesn't figure out how to jam through an ACA repeal that guts all the funding for it).  I would recommend trying to get your mother IMMEDIATELY to an appropriate benefit counselor in your state to find out what help she qualifies for.  Even if the GOP passes a health care bill that cuts Medicaid, there is a possibility they will do in a way that 'phases out' so that no new beneficiaries can enroll. Best to try to enroll now.

Re: Housing.  If the house is paid for and she has a mental disorder, I'm not sure what the point of worrying about housing is since she likely will never agree to move unless forced.  Is the house in her name? Are  there any outstanding mortgage or equity loans? Are property taxes up to date?  If the house is in the clear, then I would let that fall way down the list of things to worry about.

If I were you, I would probably first go with her to state benefits counselor.

Then I would help her through the next couple months' bills, with the clear stipulation that she must find some kind of income, even if just grocery bagging at the local supermarket, etc.  Give her a couple month's deadline for this financial assistance, and see what she does.  At this point, you might start to see where the 'barriers' to her functionality are, and it will help you make decisions on how to help.

If she's truly incapacitated by whatever her mental health issues are (like my mother was), she won't get a job and she'll be desperate again at the end of the deadline.  In the case of my own mother in her mid 50s, the issue wasn't that she wouldn't WORK the job if she had it; it was that she wouldn't SEARCH for a job ('walk in' job applications paralyzed her with anxiety and she didn't have a computer/was not computer savvy to apply online).  When that became clear to me, I job hunted on her behalf for a couple months and sent her off to interviews until she landed something.

In my mother's case, a low earning job bought her a few more years of precarious stability.   During that period, I had to think really hard about what I was willing to do to help going forward based on our financial situation and on how cooperative my mother was/would be. My mother was fairly cooperative, so when her situation deteriorated again her early 60s, I made the decision to partially support her going forward more or less permanently.  With DH's mother, who is secretive, stubborn, and living in another state, we have made the decision to not help in any kind of ongoing way, but instead budget several thousand extra $/year as a buffer against the inevitable random emergency requests for money.

Other people on this board have chosen to offer no assistance, or to offer non money assistance only, to parents in similar circumstances.

There is really no right answer, and there's no easy answer unless you have no emotional ties to the parent at all.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope you learn faster than I did that you can't fundamentally force someone to change their behavior. They have to want to change it.  And you need to come to some kind of peace with what you do and how you handle it.

The bolded sounds exactly like my mother...she is not tech savvy.  No smartphone, no cable, no internet, doesn't know how to really navigate the internet. 

And your post resonated with me because I truly think she is probably also having anxiety problems when it comes to job searching.  I am not sure of this, however, she has a lot of social anxiety even amongst us and I'd say it's gotten a bit worse the older she gets so I wouldn't be surprised if the mere thought of having to apply for something sends her into a paralyzed state as well. 

But I can't get her to help herself with this sort of issue or any of her other issues so...yeah.

LeRainDrop

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1835
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #33 on: June 16, 2017, 07:37:19 PM »
Call me cold-hearted, but you say you don't get along with her now, she doesn't want to help you help her (discuss bills, etc.), and the best thing you can say about her as a mother is that she kept a roof over your head. I agree with looking into SS, Medicaid, services for the mentally ill, etc., and I think any decent human being would want to do that to help a parent, but if I were you, I wouldn't let my own quality of life take a hit (less $ savings for your own life goals, more emotional agony) just to make the ship she's sinking go a little more slowly. No good mother would want that for her child.

+1  I'm really sorry, EconDiva.  You can't help people who aren't willing to help themselves.  She will sink you as far as you are willing to let her.

Villanelle

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3552
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #34 on: June 16, 2017, 08:00:06 PM »
I am keenly, keenly aware that all this is easier said than done, and that I may eat my hat when this moves from theoretical into the realm of reality.

But my plan for any relatives that want assistance in the future is that first and foremost, if you want significant money from me (more than a $100 gift card at Christmas type money, or maybe a one time lump sum to deal with an unexpected expense), yes, your finances do become by business.  If you are claiming dire circumstances, then the first thing to do is to get the budget in order.  Just like we want a full case study in MMM, I need to do a full case study of Relative's finances to help him or her determine what changes can be made.

Second, they must be willing to make those changes.  I'm not going to give $400 a month when there is a $120 cable bill.  Once you start spending my money, frivolities go.  I'm not suggesting it has to be a completely bare bones life; that's not what I'd want for someone I care about. But MMM level cuts?  Yup!

Third, before I give any money, any entitlements will be maximized.  SNAP, elderly care programs, Meal on wheels, disability--whatever they qualify for.  It's not reasonable, IMO (even if it is understandable) to want to spend my money because one is too proud (or too lazy) to take advantage of any programs available to them.

Fourth, most of my assistance will not be in the form of money.  It will be helping to find a realtor to sell the house and then locating a decent, cheap rental in an okay area.  It will be helping to rehome pets if they are an unreasonable barrier to rental. It will be working with them to apply for jobs.  It will be assisting with locating and applying for the aforementioned entitlements and programs.  If all of this is too much work, then clearly the need is not as dire as s/he is making it out to be.  It can't be more important to me that it is to them, and they can't just decide my money is a better solution than all those other things.  And if there are mental health issues, I will support in any way I can--including paying for care--addressing those issues. 

Fifth, there will be ongoing reviews of finances, and if irresponsible stuff is happening, my checks will stop coming.  If suddenly credit card bills start appearing and cable is reconnected and there's a lovely new sofa in the living room, I'm done.

I'm not going to jeopardize my FIRE plans for someone who, even when things are supposedly desperate, can't be bothered to make many of the sacrifices I've made for years.  And I may sound like a complete asshole about all this.  That's fine.  In a case of true need, I would have no problem providing money, even lots of it.  But when it's self-created need and the person isn't willing to take the help or make the changes necessary to get things turned around, I would consider it throwing good money after bad.  When you give $400, an irresponsible person is going to instantly adjust the lifestyle to that amount, and then in no time at all it will be $500, or it will be an emergency expense that required a large extra lump sum because every penny of that $400 was spent every month.  And thus, their life won't actually be happier or more stable, so the only real change will be that I'm poorer.

It's a crappy situation, and I'm so sorry you are having to ask these very difficult questions, especially when there are no good answers.

« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 09:37:11 PM by Villanelle »

wenchsenior

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2466
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #35 on: June 16, 2017, 08:33:55 PM »
Villanelle's post highlighted the difference in our approach to my mother vs DH's mother.  One (mine) was (once she hit real crisis point of potentially being homeless) willing to be very transparent and allow me to co-manage her finances, and make efforts to live within her means that we can actually see.  There is no way DH's mother would do that.  So it is my mother who gets the ongoing, clearly structured help that keeps her stable.  The benefit of the stability is that my mother is calmer and feels more in control, and over time has picked up a bit more on her end in terms of bills, etc, and we all feel good about that.  We would not go to this level of effort otherwise.

Dee

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 773
  • Location: Ottawa, Canada
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #36 on: June 17, 2017, 06:48:24 AM »
Not directly related to your immediate question about how much financial assistance you are able and willing to provide to your mom, but you might get a lot out of reading memoirs written by children of hoarders. I've read the following two: Coming Clean by Kimberley Rae Miller and Dirty Secret: A Daughter Comes Clean about her Mother's Compulsive Hoarding by Jessie Sholl.

Helping a hoarder seems to be really difficult. Having any sort of relationship with a hoarder seems really difficult. I don't think there are any easy, clear answers.

Mariposa

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 497
  • Location: NYC
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #37 on: June 17, 2017, 02:09:43 PM »
We may be on the other extreme in that we subsidize my MIL 15k a year and intend to so for the rest of her life. This is in addition to SSD, SNAP, and Medicare/Medicaid. She suffers from mental health issues / alcoholism but thankfully no hoarding. She's now in her early 60s, and the last time she worked a part-time job was maybe in her late 40s.

She had to let go of some of her secrecy in order for us take over her finances, but we don't know what debt she might have had in the past. Doesn't matter, though, because she has no assets and is non-collectible. We pay her rent, utilities, smartphone bill, cable, etc directly, and she uses her SSD and SNAP money to buy food and whatever else she wants. It has caused friction at points between my husband and me because she has nicer devices than I do, more plentiful clothes & shoes, and a full cable package. But, at the end of the day, I don't feel like I'm sacrificing by living the way I do. I'm not a very materialistic person by nature, and I don't feel like more stuff would make me happier. Subsidizing my MIL in this way does mean more years of work, but I would rather have a happy marriage than FIRE earlier alone.

After several ICU admissions and us taking charge of her finances and relieving her stress over that, she did stop drinking. DH says this is the most stable he's seen her in almost his entire life. It's not entirely smooth all the time, though, and her mental health issues are still there. The latest is a week ago she spilled coffee on her Macbook and killed it. We have room in the budget for device / car replacement, but it takes time to research and buy a new computer for her and to set it up. She doesn't live close to us anymore, so we have to do this remotely.

kei te pai

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 413
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #38 on: June 17, 2017, 02:37:30 PM »
Have you had any contact with the minister at your mothers church? Would there be more help available for her through that route? May be some contacts who would help her get a little work, or do some house repairs. If she would contemplate allowing it.

fdatx2

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 1
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #39 on: June 17, 2017, 04:37:48 PM »
I was putting together some stuff to make a completely unrelated post and this caught my eye.

My own mother is mentally ill and is on medical disability for an injury she sustained at work. She refuses to take medications or see anyone about her mental illness but was diagnosed years ago. She also does a fair amount of self medicating with her pain meds for her back injury.  She behaves very erratically and goes through phases of not speaking to me or her other 2 kids at different times. I don't give her any financial assistance because she will waste any money she gets but  I do try to keep in contact with her and check on her when she is speaking to me (not currently) and help her get assistance in her area.

Anyway, I was just going to recommend checking out one of the National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI) family groups in your area.  https://www.nami.org/Find-Support/Family-Members-and-Caregivers
They have free groups and many, many people are going through similar issues and have great ideas about available resources and how to get family members to accept or seek assistance. Even if just for your own emotional well being they are worth checking out. I learned about some resources for my mother a few years back from one of their groups and some ideas on how to communicate with her better.

frugaldrummer

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 829
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #40 on: June 17, 2017, 07:14:53 PM »
The laundromat amounts are ridiculous for one unemployed person.
She probably IS mentally ill but if you can't get her to treatment you probably cannot get disability for her.

I'd suggest a couple things:

- don't give her cash - targeted things like a gas card make more sense.
- find out what the house status is. Is it paid for? Does she owe taxes on it? You may want to keep the taxes paid yourself, cheaper than having to provide housing for her if she loses it to foreclosure.
- I agree with others, you need to try to find out what her social security benefits will be. Those security questions are a mofo, you might have to just go to social security with her to find out.
- don't take it all on yourself. Make a plan once you know more, then go to your brother and her siblings. Let them know she's mentally ill and you don't want to enable her but you want to keep her from ending up on the street. Tell them clearly how you plan to manage the money you give her (i.e. so they can see it won't just be spent on more stuff to hoard) , then see if they'll kick in a little financial help. They may be relieved you are willing to take it on. If say each of her siblings would give you $50 a month and your brother would give you $200, then you could put in $200 and have 500 a month to keep her taxes paid, utilities on, a little gas money. She might qualify for food stamps ( and they might make her enroll in a work readiness program, which might be helpful for her).   But I doubt it's very realistic to expect she's going to go out a get a job on her own. It sounds like she's become very dysfunctional in her personal skills if she has alienated all these family members.

Acastus

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 388
  • Age: 58
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #41 on: June 21, 2017, 01:50:35 PM »
If she could qualify as unable to work or government definition of disabled, she would qualify for SSI or disability. SSI pays regardless of work history, and is about 700-800 per month. Disability is a reduced version of social security payments, but you can collect earlier. It usually takes a few tries to get approved, and it often requires a lawyer who know how to ask the right way.

 If you can talk her into becoming her power of attorney, you can structure how she receives money so she does not blow it all the first week of the month. It is a burden. Do not take this on lightly.

privatevoid

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 33
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #42 on: June 22, 2017, 07:54:40 AM »
Quote
But my plan for any relatives that want assistance in the future is that first and foremost, if you want significant money from me (more than a $100 gift card at Christmas type money, or maybe a one time lump sum to deal with an unexpected expense), yes, your finances do become by business.  If you are claiming dire circumstances, then the first thing to do is to get the budget in order.  Just like we want a full case study in MMM, I need to do a full case study of Relative's finances to help him or her determine what changes can be made.

Second, they must be willing to make those changes.  I'm not going to give $400 a month when there is a $120 cable bill.  Once you start spending my money, frivolities go.  I'm not suggesting it has to be a completely bare bones life; that's not what I'd want for someone I care about. But MMM level cuts?  Yup!

Hope I can pipe in, I've been struggling with this myself. I recently lent my mother (who also has hoarding tendencies!) a couple hundred bucks to make it through the month... and then she added another cable box to her account. I really feel like it's time to have this conversation, although I feel she is reluctant to talk about it because of shame, pride, and because she's perfectly comfortable with her standard of living right now. If we don't, I'm not going to lend her money again; she's gonna have to figure out how to pay for the cable herself.

BFGirl

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 725
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #43 on: June 22, 2017, 03:23:40 PM »
I second the recommendation to contact NAMI. 

Also, if she is not going to the doctor and the house is a health hazard, you could make a report of self-neglect to Adult Protective Services.  Sometimes they can get some resources in place to help.  If she has a mental illness, that could be a disability for APS purposes.  You just need to call the hotline and see.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #44 on: June 22, 2017, 03:32:25 PM »
Not directly related to your immediate question about how much financial assistance you are able and willing to provide to your mom, but you might get a lot out of reading memoirs written by children of hoarders. I've read the following two: Coming Clean by Kimberley Rae Miller and Dirty Secret: A Daughter Comes Clean about her Mother's Compulsive Hoarding by Jessie Sholl.

Helping a hoarder seems to be really difficult. Having any sort of relationship with a hoarder seems really difficult. I don't think there are any easy, clear answers.

Thank you for the reading recommendations.  I am going out of town soon and may bring one of these with me to read while gone.

EconDiva

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #45 on: June 22, 2017, 03:39:54 PM »
I second the recommendation to contact NAMI. 

Also, if she is not going to the doctor and the house is a health hazard, you could make a report of self-neglect to Adult Protective Services.  Sometimes they can get some resources in place to help.  If she has a mental illness, that could be a disability for APS purposes.  You just need to call the hotline and see.

The one thing I'm very hesitant about doing is anything that could get her taken out of her home because...well...she can't come live with me and doesn't really have anywhere else to go.

As an aside, the home 'was' previously in foreclosure a few years ago.  She told me when I went home for her dad/my grandfather's wake.  She got $25K then and I tried to talk to her about sitting down to discuss managing the money but she got pissy with me and basically said it wasn't my money.  I assumed she got out of foreclosure because she's still in the house.  However I do not know if it's paid for.  Around this time she had stated she was 'so close to paying it off' so my assumption is that she did.

nobody123

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 519
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #46 on: June 23, 2017, 07:13:58 AM »
I second the recommendation to contact NAMI. 

Also, if she is not going to the doctor and the house is a health hazard, you could make a report of self-neglect to Adult Protective Services.  Sometimes they can get some resources in place to help.  If she has a mental illness, that could be a disability for APS purposes.  You just need to call the hotline and see.

The one thing I'm very hesitant about doing is anything that could get her taken out of her home because...well...she can't come live with me and doesn't really have anywhere else to go.

As an aside, the home 'was' previously in foreclosure a few years ago.  She told me when I went home for her dad/my grandfather's wake.  She got $25K then and I tried to talk to her about sitting down to discuss managing the money but she got pissy with me and basically said it wasn't my money.  I assumed she got out of foreclosure because she's still in the house.  However I do not know if it's paid for.  Around this time she had stated she was 'so close to paying it off' so my assumption is that she did.

Public records are a wonderful thing.  Just go to the county recorder's website and look up your mother's name / address.  Any mortgage should be recorded, along with any tax liens, etc. If she paid off the mortgage there should be a filing saying so as well.  Your county auditor's website would have the current tax bill info, too, so you can check if she's behind on those even if there isn't a tax lien filed.

wenchsenior

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2466
Re: My mother (Sigh)
« Reply #47 on: June 23, 2017, 08:09:09 AM »
I second the recommendation to contact NAMI. 

Also, if she is not going to the doctor and the house is a health hazard, you could make a report of self-neglect to Adult Protective Services.  Sometimes they can get some resources in place to help.  If she has a mental illness, that could be a disability for APS purposes.  You just need to call the hotline and see.

The one thing I'm very hesitant about doing is anything that could get her taken out of her home because...well...she can't come live with me and doesn't really have anywhere else to go.

As an aside, the home 'was' previously in foreclosure a few years ago.  She told me when I went home for her dad/my grandfather's wake.  She got $25K then and I tried to talk to her about sitting down to discuss managing the money but she got pissy with me and basically said it wasn't my money.  I assumed she got out of foreclosure because she's still in the house.  However I do not know if it's paid for.  Around this time she had stated she was 'so close to paying it off' so my assumption is that she did.

Public records are a wonderful thing.  Just go to the county recorder's website and look up your mother's name / address.  Any mortgage should be recorded, along with any tax liens, etc. If she paid off the mortgage there should be a filing saying so as well.  Your county auditor's website would have the current tax bill info, too, so you can check if she's behind on those even if there isn't a tax lien filed.

Yup.  I recently snooped on half a dozen friends' property tax records in a city where we were thinking of making a move (I was trying to work out housing costs in different parts of the city...handily, I knew people living all over that place so could compare a lot of neighborhoods and property types). 

You can also sometimes get the utility companies to give you average utility use/year for different properties, if you call them.

Off topic: it's astonishing how much info we have access to today, via the web.  My husband had dinner with a friend from above-mentioned city, who began to talk about his awesome new solar panels, and DH was all, "Oh, yeah, we saw those on satellite while looking at a house for sale near you! When did you put those in?"   The Internets are useful. But kind of creepy.