Wednesday, May 24, 2017

A TRUE Story about Elder-dumping

His first day at the CalVet Home

Yesterday was my father-in-law's 91st birthday. We took him out for an early lunch. I asked him, how he felt about being 91 - Granted, he uses a wheelchair, and has skin cancer patches all over his face and arms, is diabetic, has a pacemaker, and he's got some other health issues that come with that age. After he thought about it, he narrowed it down to an age - he said he feels like he is 45 on most days. WOW - that was sure encouraging to hear. I believe his good attitude helps and he is constantly grateful. A few years ago, he was married to his 6th and last wife. Living in Wisconsin surrounded by her family. She was a nice lady but her married children did not approve of my FIL when they married. After their father passed, they did not ever expect their mom to remarry at age 80.

It was a hard time for both of them - with the adult children trying their best to break them up, constantly pitting them against one another. My FIL is a stubborn man and used to have some anger issues and they started flaring up again. One of the grandsons hacked his Facebook, and put some naughty posts up. Unfortunately, when my FIL (in his 80's) he still had a roving eye for the ladies and we believe now, the adult children used that to their advantage. He was an easy target to set up.

It was about 3 or 4 years ago, we get a phone call from one of the daughters, who said, he hit someone with his cane and in doing so, tapped one of the children. He did not hurt the child, nevertheless, he lost control. They boarded him on a plane with just the clothes on him, and sent him out to us, in California. We get a call, that he will be landing in a couple of hours. We live in a rural part of northern California - takes us 3 hours to get down to the Sacramento Airport. It was also in the middle of the night. We had no way, to get him. His phone was turned off.

Apparently, when he arrived, he took a bus up - and had nowhere to go - no phone. We believe he was mugged. So he was lost in our town for about 2 weeks. We were frantically looking for him. He finally showed up at the mission. He had suffered a few mini strokes during that time of homelessness. Adult Services called us, and we just told them the truth - that the family back in Wisconsin elder-dumped him on us. They didn't prearrange anything.  When taking an elderly person in, or planning to, you need at least a month. Heck, a couple of days would have even helped. So the police or whoever contacted the family in Wisconsin. and I frankly don't remember what their consequences were after that. Just know, there was bad blood from then on.

He wasn't doing too good health wise and we could not take him in at our place because of his medical needs, so they placed him in a nursing home and my husband who works at CalVet, got him on the waiting list for the Veteran Home. 9 months later, he moved into the brand new facility and has improved beyond anything we could imagine. They take great care of him and he has an awesome life. He gets to see his son every day my husband works, and his granddaughter used to volunteer - he would see her and my son also works there. Just today, when we went in to see him, my son, Navy was in his room!

He lives in the skilled nursing wing. They also have a memory care wing, so if and when his memory becomes an issue, he can be there.

He always says, during our care meetings with the staff, that he feels like they spoil him. His every need is taken care of. Now I said, just about...he still likes the ladies, which can be irritating to my husband. He's an old goat, who is not politically correct and at times, he flirts with the nurses. They are kind and trained enough to realize, that you can't teach old dog new tricks, so they ignore him. He also likes the old gals, too. All in all, he has been a good boy while being there.

2 weeks ago, I got a message on Facebook, from the facebook hacking Grandson in Wisconsin - informing me that my FIL's wife passed away last year! Wow, they didn't even tell us.  We haven't told him yet. He's outlived 4 wives now and the other 2 divorced him.


  1. Those people in Wisconsin are real jerks. A lot of older men like ladies. When I worked in a nursing home, I got some propositions from the patients.


    1. Yeah the only flirting I get these days are from the really old geezers out at the Veterans Home.

  2. That makes me mad for him to be treated that way. He could have died. I'm glad you got a good facility for him. I wish I had some help like that. It is a challenge to have your house ready for people with special needs.

    1. It sure is. Plus at that time, we had 3 adult children living at home and one of their spouses. We had a packed house.

  3. Might not be tempted to tell him about his wife that passed, unless he brings it up. Maybe its for the best to "let sleeping dogs lie." Such a sad story, but a good ending with how you all were able to help him. I hope he lives many more years!



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