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CARENOTES | Past Carenotes | Let's Talk


Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 04/26/11
I  cared for my father until he recently passed away. I was the POA for all his decisions.  My sister and I are the executors of his will.  My sister is accusing me of taking my fatherís money.  She claims $35,000 is missing.
My father lived within our home with my family.  My sister did nothing, and I mean nothing.   I made sure he had everything he wanted.  I feel I saved us money;  in a nursing home, all the money would be gone by now.
I feel so hurt from her allegations after spending five years of my life taking care of him.  I would do it again in a minute.  I loved my father.  I put my life on hold to care of him and my mom.  Mom passed first, then he slowly got worse after her death.
I am gathering all our utility bills, house payments, home owners' insurance, and what we paid for his sitters' time.What about all the time we put in taking care of him?  Any advice at this point would be appreciated.    


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Name: Louise
Location: Long Island, NY
Date: 04/27/2011
Time: 05:46 PM


Finding an elder care attorney immediately is very important in this situation. It's disheartening to face such discord while your are still grieving, but don't put it off. The burden of proof of theft is on your sister, but you need to make sure you are getting good legal advice. I detect resentment and anger on your side and selfishness and greediness on your sister's side. If, in fact, you used your father's funds to supplement your income (mortgage payments, utility bills, etc.), you may have more problems than just your sister's accusations. You made a choice to care for your father, and you are a saint for doing so, but his funds should have been used solely to care for him (aides, supplies, medicines, clothing, special foods, transportation to/from doctors, etc.). Find that attorney right away!

Name: Lou Henderson
Location: Maxton, N. C.
Date: 04/27/2011
Time: 02:55 AM


You are to be commended on your good deeds. I was in almost the same predictement. I was a caregiver for my parents out of love and dedication for many years. I had almost no help from the rest of the family. after my parents died I was willed a very large estate. One of my brothers was very angry and the other was glad. He said that I deserved it. I just concider the source and go on with my life. I did what no one else woulddo. good luck. Lou

Date: 04/26/2011
Time: 09:17 AM


I really don't have any advice, but want you to know that you are not alone. My sisters did the same to me. I did not speak to them for a while, as the pain was so bad. After a year I wrote them a letter stating exactly what and where and why, and also why I was so hurt. This has been 5-6 years, and we are on good terms now. I still feel some disappointment at their actions, but I let them know in no uncertain terms, what they did to me. A letter can say so much more, as they cannot interrupt-- and they keep reading. I hope you can resolve this, my friend ! It will take time. And, goodness, bless you for your care of your dad !! Jan

Name: Sandi, RN, Faith Community Nurse
Location: North Dakota
Date: 04/26/2011
Time: 08:00 AM


Dear Daughter(s): You are walking a tough time right now. This is your sister. How has your relationship been? You sound angry and flustered with her, and she is probably upset as well. You both lost your dad. You might feel it more because he lived with you and you miss daily contact with him. She didn't and is realizing she missed opportunities. Grief can make us do strange things at times. What would your dad have to say to the two of you? I would guess it would be: stop it; get along; Your mother and I raised you better. Maybe you could use that as a starting point in a conversation. Ask your pastor to help facilitate a conversation between the two of you if needed. Who is she making accusations to? Do you have a lawyer working with you both to facilitate this role? Do you need one? Where does she think this money is from and how does she know of it? Where did the money go? If you used for his personal bills, caregivers, medications/supplies....pull out the forms or records from. Perhaps for her to understand she needs to see because she wasn't there.For anyone else reading as a primary caregiver: document everything daily! Keep a log/journal of costs/activities/needs. Be sure that checks written by/for person have something written on lower left corner to identify use of funds. If you have the time now prepare a way to communicate with extended family that needs to know/understand as things are happening and not after death. We all grieve a death, especially of a parent. It is so hard to do and the financial end of things is always the hardest to muck through. May God provide both of you calmness, laughter and the ability to walk through this time together. May you each respect your father's memory together.

Name: LK
Location: Texas
Date: 04/26/2011
Time: 06:52 AM


Dear Friend, I have no advice for you but I am very interested to see what others might tell you. I have a similar situation and need help too. LK Texas

Name: Yvette
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Date: 04/26/2011
Time: 06:51 AM


I am truly sorry you are going throuigh this agony. I know I went through this 26 years ago and was even taken to court by a sister. This happens all of the time, siblings get greedy especially when they have not participated. Just be strong,take care of yourself and remember this will pass. I hope that in the future your sister apologizes and does not put a wedge between the two of you. Be the bigger and better person and forgive her.

Name: Bette
Location: Delaware County
Date: 04/26/2011
Time: 06:14 AM


As POA, you CAN spend his money......but only on care for HIM. Your house payments, utility bills, etc., don't count, as this would be money spent whether or not he was in your home. Unpaid time off from work to care for him, gas to transport him to doctors' appointments, adult daycare and respite fees, grab-bars and installation, and any additional expenses you may have had ONLY for his care can be added. All of these expenses should be documented, as your role as POA. You may want to consult with an elder-law attorney on the matter.



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