I have never in my wildest dreams believe that I would be thrown into a situation that I am currently in and I can honestly say that I am not exactly the most trusting person out there. In fact it would be safe to say just the opposite. I am very untrusting on pretty much everybody, I have been through quite a bit in my life and I have seen so much hurt, despair and deception that it could last a few people a lifetime. With that said, I can sit back and say that I am completely dumbfounded at the lack of compassion that a daughter can have for her mother. Let me give you a brief run down of what has been going on recently.
My grandmother has been fairly sick the past few months. She has COPD, yet still continues to smoke, has rheumatoid arthritis, yet refuses to take her meds and do physical therapy, and has what we are pretty certain is early Alzheimer's. Well she has been pretty sick and for the most part home bound since late summer, so my aunt had stepped in to take over cleaning the house and paying her bills. Well over the weekend we realized that she wasn't doing well at all and decided that it was time to go to the hospital. I kind of just stepped into the role of "agent" for my grandmother because of my outspokenness and knowledge of the medical field. Everybody in the family at that point was absolutely fine with me taking over that role, especially after they say me fighting with the ER doc about HIPPA laws. But anyway.....gram ended up being admitted to the hospital for observation and a few tests because they thought she had an obstruction. The following day we all got together and discussed as a family about what needed to happen. We came to the agreement that I would take over medical power of attorney and my aunt that was supposedly paying the bills was going to continue to do that but we were going to get together every 3 months to make sure that things were all in line.
On Monday, we find out about some financial issues that were going on....ie property liens for back taxes, defaulted loans etc. So we were wondering what was going on with all that because my aunt G was supposed to be helping my gram with paying bills. Aunt (G), who was handling gram's finances, comes to the hospital wreaking of alcohol and stumbling drunk. Well we were meeting with the social worker to go over all the paperwork for the POA. Aunt G goes on a tirade as we are talking to the social worker about how this was all bullshit that we were handing control over to "the baby" and that I was a power tripping control freak. Ok....so I will cop to the control freak because at times I can be, however I rarely am on a power trip. So....Aunt G stomps off saying that she needed to get out of there. Well something just wasn't setting right with me. I could tell something was off. Aunt G knew that I was going to push and dig into things as to why bills weren't being paid etc. So, I leave after all the papers are signed and go to gram's house to check into some things. Well while I was there I found shut off notices for utilities and other paperwork that indicated that none of these bills were being paid. So Tuesday morning I went with my paperwork to the bank to get a copy of my grams most recent statement only to find that aunt G has been basically robbing my gram blind. There was $860 in cash withdraws from my gram's account along with $105 grocery bill that was placed on her bank card. PLUS charges for 2 new bank cards that were issued to my aunt and her boyfriend. I took the paperwork into the hospital to discuss things with my gram. She told me that she gave Aunt G the card to purchase groceries for Thanksgiving dinner because she was going to bring some to my gram and my uncle. However my gram didn't think that it was going to be $105...also Aunt G ended up with consent from my gram to withdraw money to pay the bills. She was supposedly withdrawing cash and then putting it into her bank account to pay my gram's bills. Well I ended up spending all of Wed calling all of the utility companies and everything only to find out that that none of the bills were paid since August. She was months behind and services were going to be terminated because my aunt took the money that my gram thought was going to her bills and snorted it up her nose and drank it away.
I cannot believe that somebody would go as low as to steal from their aging and ill mother and basically leave her with NOTHING. NO food, NO house, NO heat, NOTHING! My gram was under the impression that my aunt cared, she was stopping at her house daily with food for her, going to the store for her and everything....and now she is left feeling used by this situation. I cannot even begin to imagine.
I was in a situation similar to this, but it was my brother stealing from me. I was not nearly as frail as my grandmother, and thankfully I caught it only after a few days so that I wasn't left with NOTHING. Right now we are unsure of how long this has been going on. My aunt supposedly has been doing the bills since June/July and that is right about when the bills had stopped being paid.
We are in the process of me taking POA over all of my gram's finances as well as medical decisions and I hope to be able to figure out just how much she has taken her for. We are debating on pressing charges because we actually think there is more to it. But let's not get into conspiracy theories without proper evidence now. I am just hoping this is the last of the drama for awhile because this week surely has been filled with it.