One woman in California, Carolyn A. Brent, is working to close many of the legal loop holes that make helping a parent with dementia so difficult. She wrote a book Why Wait? Unfortunately, most of us are already knee-deep in the swamp, but I hope her book helps others.
I have already been accumulating my list of the ways I want to age better than my parents. That lists continues to grow as I walk through this process.
What I do know is that most people have not organized even the most basic information should there ever be a medical crisis and someone needs to step in to fill their shoes. You may have the will and medical directives, but you have not documented, in ONE place, all of your financial accounts, usernames and passcodes; details on your medical history; access information to your online accounts like email and social media.
When I had to step in and gather this information for my parents, it took me more than six months to pull together the big stuff. I turned the organization and documentation system I created into a product that can help everyone get organized. It’s one of the kindest things you can do to assist a loved one.
I hope you will take a moment to learn more about the MemoryBanc® Register system and see how it can help get you organized.
If you are a caregiver, I hope you will consider using this tool to help support your parent(s), and make sure you have the back-up systems in place should someone be able to step in and help you.
Thanks to Butch who actively posts great information on his blog amidst his own challenges with his parents and brought this book to my attention.
2 thoughts on “Why wait until?”
It certainly makes sense to have it all written down in one place. But as murphy’s law goes, guaranteed, you write it all down nice and clear for all the right reasons, and someone gets hold of the information and uses it in the wrong way. That, or, you just don’t have time. It’s more than enough just to get the food on the table, kids to school, and the bills paid, let alone organising that filing cabinet so it makes some kind of sense. Sifting through what is junk, what is required for tax (keeping 7 years worth of receipts for every mundane item you’ve bought). I don’t even have time to open half of my mail. Anything that looks remotely like it could contain junk, just gets stuffed in the pile of junk to one day be sorted through. Too bad if it was a cheque from the nigerian price telling me I’ve won a zillion kabillion dollars and i missed my opportunity to become a millionaire princess.
I fully appreciate your comments but this is something ELSE you should do for your loved ones. When I had to help my parents it took over 6 months for me to find JUST the basic account and financial details to assist them.
The kindest thing you can do for your loved ones is to organize some of the basic stuff first – online accounts, user names, pass words. That shouldn’t take you more than 15 minutes. Don’t put it on your computer, but write it down or store it on a thumb drive you put in a safe place … and tell your loved ones where it is.
Recently, a friend’s wife had a stroke — at 43. Not only was he devasted by the magnitude of her health issues, but he had NO idea how to access the online bill pay account. Start simple … but just make sure to start!