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Monday, February 7, 2011

I can't believe people do this to their own parents!

I received a call today from a client who was very upset about certain actions taken by one of her children. The client's former husband, Jack*, has been living with one of their three children. Jack is elderly, needs several different medications, and is on an I.V. 24 hours a day. He should be living in a care facility, but refuses to go.

Apparently Jack's daughter and her husband got tired of looking after him. They removed his I.V. and took him to their cabin, an hour and a half outside of town. They left him there alone, without his I.V. and with no medications. He has no transportation. Three days later (today), my client found out about this. She asked her daughter to go retreive Jack but they said they don't want him back. She asked them to take Jack's medication to him, but they said they didn't think he needs it.

The end result of this call is that my client's grand-daughter is going to drive out and pick up Jack, and take him to the nearest hospital. There he can have an I.V. re-inserted and can have medication administered. He will be safe while living arrangements are made.

I'm not a vengeful person, but this situation has me fuming and I hope there are consequences for Jack's daughter and son-in-law. (I can't get involved as a lawyer because I work in-house for the bank). I know it's not easy to look after an elderly relative, especially one with medical needs. Some days you need the patience of a saint. I get that. But you don't just abandon a vulnerable person without the basic necessities and care. If you simply can't do it anymore, make other suitable arrangements.

And if you're the elderly relative digging in your heels about going to live in a care facility, maybe you need to compromise. Maybe it really is the best place for you to live.

I sincerely hope that Jack makes it to the hospital before any real damage is done. And I also hope that if he is not ok, his daughter and son-in-law face criminal charges.

*not his real name, for obvious reasons

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