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Old 01-29-2024, 02:43 PM
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Default End of Life - Options

Due to a number of circumstances that have occurred over the past few years, I've been forced to think about death and dying a lot lately. Watching my father struggle without my mother (who passed a little over a year ago), and my MiL do nothing but eat, sleep, and watch tv has led me to realize that I really don't want to be a burden on my kids once the productive aspects of my life are past. Obviously, I would love to be there for my boys, and their families (if they choose to have them), for as long as I can be. However, once my health starts to decline, I do not want to be a burden on them.

I helped take care of my grandfather as he was dying from cancer. Fortunately I was able to take time off of grad school to spend a couple of months with him before he passed, and I was thankful for it, but it's not pleasant having my last memories of that strong man being helping him go to the bathroom when he could still move, or moving him on his hospital bed while the nurse changed his diaper when it was finally time to call hospice in. And this week helping my dad get dressed after an out-patient surgical procedure, and seeing how slow he's started to move as he gets close to his 80s.

Do I think my kids would help me if I needed it? They're young right now, and as long as I don't do anything to ruin my relationship with them, I think they would but I don't want to do that to them. In essence, I want to make the hard decisions and get a plan into place so when the time comes I can spare them from having to make those decisions for me, or carrying memories that can't be erased.

Will they disagree? Maybe. Will they feel that I cheated them out of some time together? Maybe. But I know that life moves on, and they have lives to live and that I lived mine until I didn't want to any longer.

So I've been looking into euthanasia tourism in Europe. I've been to Europe a few times now, and it's always been a beautiful place to visit. I know a few countries -currently- allow such. Whether it'd still be allowed when the time for me to make such a decision is the question. Hopefully I'm a good twenty/thirty years away from such a decision, but I also know that - at my age - it only takes one bad disease or horrible accident to set you down a path of continued struggle for the remainder of your life.

Growing old sucks.

Sorry if this isn't in the proper forum.
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  #2  
Old 01-29-2024, 06:57 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

A common advice is to get a trust in place.

With regard to adult children assisting aging parents, outside north America, the multigenerational home is the norm or at least more prevalent. And the atomized family in North America is a relatively new thing. It's great for shareholder earnings when a family needs 6 houses and 12 cars rather than 2 houses and five cars, But that's a great wealth mover... upward and with end of life care, it's a great destroyer of generational wealth.

And so we have this by your bootstraps mutant society that doesn't take care of one another very effectively. I have no solution, it's just the part of the world we live in.

But yeah, I'm having a fishing accident before I'm too old to get to the lake if I don't have enough non-transferable flight points for Europe.
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Old 01-29-2024, 08:12 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

I like the idea of making all the hard decisions while you still have the capability to do so.

I have a lot more to say, 8 months out from my mother's death after an extended decline, but it's taking me too long to write it out.
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Old 01-29-2024, 08:20 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamilah Hauptmann View Post
A common advice is to get a trust in place.

With regard to adult children assisting aging parents, outside north America, the multigenerational home is the norm or at least more prevalent. And the atomized family in North America is a relatively new thing. It's great for shareholder earnings when a family needs 6 houses and 12 cars rather than 2 houses and five cars, But that's a great wealth mover... upward and with end of life care, it's a great destroyer of generational wealth.

And so we have this by your bootstraps mutant society that doesn't take care of one another very effectively. I have no solution, it's just the part of the world we live in.

But yeah, I'm having a fishing accident before I'm too old to get to the lake if I don't have enough non-transferable flight points for Europe.
Yeah, that's another thing I've been thinking about a lot. We're having to take care of my MiL and we've had discussions about how is the family (as a whole, her kids and their spouses) going to take care of her when she has no savings and no resources. I am trying to come to grips with the idea that I could be forced to jeopardize my ability to retire and my kids future to go "above and beyond" when taking care of my MiL, as heartless as that sounds (though I also know there are filial responsibility laws in many states ... not sure how many dictate that we'll need to bankrupt ourselves to care for the elderly). And also, I want to leave something behind for my kids because they're growing up in an age where they're going to possibly be priced out of a lot. If I can leave them a decent sized trust and property that can be split between them so they can get a leg up in life, I'll consider myself successful.
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Old 01-29-2024, 10:33 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

There's a cost to maintaining a trust, so it's not something you should set up too soon - it's something my mother did when she retired. You can also set up transfer on death (TOD) on any financial accounts, so they don't need to go through probate.

If everything had gone to plan, my mother's estate would have consisted of her bank accounts and personal property, and could have been resolved relatively easily.
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  #6  
Old 01-29-2024, 11:19 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Quote:
Originally Posted by specious_reasons View Post
You can also set up transfer on death (TOD) on any financial accounts, so they don't need to go through probate.
I remember it took several months of probate for my brother and me to get the small pittance my dad had in an account when he died, and that was with a (simple but valid) will. I'll have to look into that for my accounts. My mom and stepdad have a trust already, that I've reviewed, so that's covered. Mrs. Puppet and I have one too, but we're terrible at keeping it updated.
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Old 01-29-2024, 11:39 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

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Originally Posted by specious_reasons View Post
There's a cost to maintaining a trust, so it's not something you should set up too soon - it's something my mother did when she retired.
Hard disagree on this.

There may be costs to maintaining an irrevocable trust that has a separate legal personality from its settlor and beneficiaries, but there are virtually no costs to maintain a revocable living trust that is exclusively controlled by the settlor(s) - that is to say, the person(s) creating the trust. There are some up front costs to create it, and to retitle some assets to it (like we conveyed our house from ourselves to the trust), but these are generally pretty modest as part of an overall estate plan - a few thousand dollars, tops.

Titling real and personal property in a revocable living trust can save a huge amount of hassle for a couple (married or otherwise) upon the death of the first partner, and for the beneficiaries upon the death of the second one. It also has no separate personality for tax purposes, so there's no extra effort. There are even some perks - like, you can buy an extra $10,000 in certain types of bonds in the US (I bonds) simply by titling them in a living trust.

A living trust can enable avoidance of probate altogether, and even if you can't totally avoid it, you can direct the will to distribute the estate assets to the trust. If you're worried about leaving a probate headache for someone, don't wait to do a revocable trust. You don't know when you will die.

Quote:
You can also set up transfer on death (TOD) on any financial accounts, so they don't need to go through probate.

If everything had gone to plan, my mother's estate would have consisted of her bank accounts and personal property, and could have been resolved relatively easily.
Agree on all of these. The more than can go outside of probate the better. If you have a trust, you can also set up your pay on death designee as a trust, if you don't want to go to the trouble of retitling all the accounts (you just have to remember to fix it if you revoke the trust).
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  #8  
Old 01-30-2024, 01:47 AM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

My mother died almost seven months ago. I'm still waiting on probate.

It took months before I received an acknowledgement that the probate people had received my probate application and fee. The acknowledgement told me to phone after sixteen weeks, if I'd heard nothing. Last week, it was time to phone, and after waiting on hold for ages I was eventually told that they had no idea how much longer it will take, but that I shouldn't chase them again.

The amount in the estate is fairly small, no tax to pay, no properties involved, and the money just to be split evenly between me and my sister. Why it's taking so long is just down to bureaucratic drag. Why should it take over half a year for what should be a simple rubber-stamping exercise?

My sister and I had applied for financial power of attorney while my mother was declining. But that took months to arrive too, and only arrived after she had died, so was useless and a waste of the application fee. That was literally a stamping exercise - they just rubber-stamped the multi-page application form I had to post to them, and sent it back to me. Shame it took them months to get around to it.
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Old 01-30-2024, 01:58 AM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Unless the goal is to establish a fund for the benefit of a drunk/junkie/idiot who can't handle money or do anything to take care of himself, a trust is almost always a bad idea. Even when it's a good idea, very few people can draft a truly proper one, even the overwhelming majority of lolyers who specialize in estate planning.

My estate planning consists almost exclusively of POD/survivorship arrangements. What I still need to do is assure I have readily available means to off myself quickly and cleanly should the need arise. What I have will go to family. Not a penny will the long-term care industry receive, and the general health care industry will receive as little as possible.
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Old 02-07-2024, 06:55 AM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

It is true that a child who must care for a parent, in any way, at any time, endures burden. It is true that the burden is onerous and unfair.

If the parent has always needed care, then, has the child ever been truly able to grow, to have a life of their own, to be free?

Nope.

What of a parent who needs care, and lacks the means by which to access care, and relieve the burden on a child?

That's the thread topic, isn't it. Seems to be a big question with no easy answers. What sort of solutions could be discussed here, on :ff:, that could be applied to our individual circumstances? Maybe some friends can offer advice to each other, which is great. That's why most of you are here, right?

Maybe what friends type to each other in online forums doesn't always have practical applications. That's off-topic.

No one who can see this thread is going to live long enough to see any kind of change to any kind of economic system or government that will result in us not becoming burdens to our kids, if we have any.

Do what you can with what you have. Nothing gets better.
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Old 02-07-2024, 10:23 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Sorry to hear about your mom It's me.
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Old 02-08-2024, 12:11 AM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Quote:
Originally Posted by It's Me! View Post
[...]my MiL do nothing but eat, sleep, and watch tv has led me to realize that I really don't want to be a burden on my kids once the productive aspects of my life are past. Obviously, I would love to be there for my boys, and their families (if they choose to have them), for as long as I can be. However, once my health starts to decline, I do not want to be a burden on them.
[...]
This is the thing that hit me the hardest. My mom literally wanted her basic needs catered to, and then all she wanted to do was read and watch TV. Eventually, her dementia got to the point where it was frustrating for her to even read. I did get her some books that were essentially art books full of horse pictures (her favorite), but she mostly just watched whatever was on TV.

In terms of "being there" for anyone, my Mom wouldn't answer her phone. She didn't inquire about the family when I called or visited. Some of that was the dementia, and some of that was the undiagnosed/untreated depression she had for the last 20 years of her life. She gave up taking care of herself sometime in the mid 2010s and slowly spiraled down. When COVID hit, she spiraled quickly because she got it into her head that she couldn't go to the hospital, and she avoided calling for help until she was way too sick.

She ultimately lived the life she "wanted" the last 5 years or so, but it was a hollow shell of a life. Her insularity didn't help at all with her declining cognition. I sometimes think it would be better if she could have made more of a conscious decision to set an end date.

I didn't mind the burden of taking care of her, but what she wanted didn't match with what she needed and what I, personally, could provide. She died before I could do what she really needed — what I spent money on to get guardianship so I could take care of her as she needed. I, unlike my Mom, went to therapy to sort out some of this shit. It helped a bit, and I hope that I do a better job of dealing with my declining years.
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Old 02-08-2024, 12:37 AM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Gone through a few of those, over the last 20 some years.
Helped Mom take care of Grandma, then helped with Dad and his cancer,
Then took care of Mom for a couple of years, 'til she went.
Helped the Mrs with her mom.
When lil brother's liver gave up on him, Sister and I took care of him for awhile.
Now, it seems the Mrs is slipping down the path.

When she's gone, I'm going to make one more trip around the world, then go sit on a beach with Ol' George Dickel 'til the Tide comes and takes us both out.
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Old 02-08-2024, 08:40 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

https://www.livingto100.com/

There's a calculator test to take that gives you a prediction of how long you'll live. Obviously caveats as there is no way to predict certain things, but I thought it was kinda fun. You do have to give your email address though.
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Old 02-08-2024, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

Quote:
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https://www.livingto100.com/

There's a calculator test to take that gives you a prediction of how long you'll live. Obviously caveats as there is no way to predict certain things, but I thought it was kinda fun. You do have to give your email address though.
Interesting.

They said I've got another decade or so, and if I follow all their recommendation, it looks like I could add a year, maybe.

I reckon I am good.
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Old 02-09-2024, 06:04 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

it gave me to the age of 87 which gives me 29 years. So I thought back to when I was 29 and tried to remember how long that felt that I had been alive. I have a feeling it goes faster at the end though. Like a boulder rolling downhill.
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Old 02-14-2024, 06:41 AM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

I have a disabled child so I put our executor in charge of whether there shall be a trust or not, my mother was very poorly served by her trust.
She was mentally ill, but the trust was run by the bank of America and even more poorly run than whatever she might have done with the money. She is now indigent and reliant on her care facility not being closed down before her death. Her trust was originally in Coca Cola shares in the early 1950s sooo. WHEEE.
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Old 02-14-2024, 06:43 AM
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Weirdly I'm dealing with my Brother In Law's execution of my Mother In Law's estate, which included him getting my MIL to change her will to give my son and husband a "fuck you" amount of money. But at the same time it is fucking up our taxes for 2023, without having gotten a miniscule disbursement from this will.
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Old 02-20-2024, 03:03 PM
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Default Re: End of Life - Options

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I, unlike my Mom, went to therapy to sort out some of this shit. It helped a bit, and I hope that I do a better job of dealing with my declining years.
Yeah, I probably need to go to therapy to help me process some of the emotions I've been harboring around these situations from the past few years. Thanks for mentioning it, because sometimes - even if it's staring you in the face - you don't think about it until someone else points it out.
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