Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Huge choices :-(

Came the message from DS on my smartphone at lunchtime.

"I'm in a different hospital with Okaasan :-("

And so our day changed...

The mental health hospital alerted him mid-morning: Okaasan's legs were swelling up, they were worried it was signs of heart problems etc. Please come quickly. 
He swept into a rush of getting away from work, taxi to the hospital, consultations, ANOTHER hospital recommendation - Circulatory Hospital? - then he took Okaasan by taxi to the other hospital for 4 hours of checks, advice...waiting and diagnosis.

Not heart problems....phew! - but circulation problems which are probably due to inactivity and blood thickening. Meds for thinning the blood...recommendations for circulation treatments and physical therapy...and recommendation of admission to THIS hospital to tackle these issues...

DS very shocked to realize in all of this that Okaasan couldn't stand by herself or walk....he was hauling her in and out of the taxi and hospital chairs. She is in diapers. Happy enough, luckily. Not over-stressed or angry.

He took her back to the mental health hospital - she was happy enough to be returning there. During the long waiting in the afternoon she'd constantly said to him: "Oh, it's busy here, we should go home" - but seemed happy enough that the "home" place she returned to was a big building with a smiling woman in a white uniform...

So. All of that.

And THEN he had to change tack and rush off for his 5 pm appointment with the lawyer to talk about the house sale and the legal problems of that....

Trying to summarize:

Selling the house is going to be hard.
He can't become her Legal Guardian for the housesale unless there is some major reason WHY the house needs to be sold.
Just "nobody in the family needs the house now" is not enough.
If she needs the money from the house for expensive care - better.
Hospital stay/general care home - probably isn't a good enough reason for a judge.
This is why - there are empty homes all over Japan. Many families are stuck with former homes they can't sell until the elderly person dies. 


Very unlikely/dangerous to try and get her to sign documents now - the fact she is in a mental health hospital and her dementia level has gone up - no legal professional is going to go near that situation and risk professional censure.
If she had signed the documents 2 months ago, before the fall, all would have been ok...


Oh .....and even if he and I get married....and then he dies before his mother...I would be able to take care of her life decisions and use her money for her care...but after she dies...the proceeds from the sale of the house would go to the Japanese State...and not to me...unless I have children. Cats don't count.

I don't need/want Okaasan's house money...all I want is to know I can make decisions for her in the event of his death by over-skiing.

Are you still with me?
I'm not.

So. We have had looong, sad discussions last night and this morning.....and it's only 7 am...

We both feel that her physical decline in walking etc is the most pressing concern. Bad.
The latest meds seem to be calming her mental condition. Good.
The mental health hospital is making her physical condition worse. Very bad.
She can't be at home unless she can at least walk to the toilet herself - even if she goes to day care Monday to Friday daytimes, that would still leave us nights and weekends of DS having to sleeping in her room to stop her walking and falling....and all the diaper changing.

So. If the mental condition is under control - she should be admitted to the Circulatory Hospital to get standing and walking again? They have a physical therapy training room and program?

IF she can stand and walk a bit.
THEN come home?
OR - find a care home for her?

TRY to start the process for DS to become Legal Guardian. TRY to get permission to sell the house?
OR: just leave the house empty and unsold, until Okaasan dies?

We are exhausted by all these choices and decisions.

There you have it.

The orthopedic hospital last month didn't care for Okaasan's mental condition.
The mental health hospital now isn't caring for her physical condition.

In 2 months her mental and physical conditions have declined sharply. All because of a fall.



  1. I think that the cost to put her in a care facility (which sounds like it is needed) would be reason enough to warrant getting power of attorney over Okaasan's estate. That is one reason we used. You need to ask a doctor to fill out a form saying that she is mentally incompetent (they usually do the Hasegawa test and that is enough). With that it should help you case. Good luck on all of this!

    1. Maybe this lawyer - who I know personally and trrust - is being over cautious. But she has painted DS a pretty low chance scenario. According to her - the mental imcompetence, the care home.....are all just general situations and not likely to justify the need for POW. The Japanese law argues that the house is an asset and should be retained by the owner until the asset is really needed. :-( But I think he is going to try and do it.

  2. It's unfortunate that Japanese hospitals seem to be so specialized and there isn't a more generalist approach where different specialities are in the same location so you can receive more holistic care. :(

    1. I totally agree - I am so angry that this mental health hospital has treated her so badly. She arrived there 3-4 weeks ago and walked into the building. Now she has circulation problems and can't stand? It is a basic health matter to get patients walking around the day room and corridors. Specially a dementia patient who recently had a broken back bone, but can't remember it themselves. So bad. But that is - I fear - a very Japanese way to do things - to specialise and not look at the whole situation. She should be coming home now and joining a day care community on her calming meds. Not going to a 3rd hospital to sort out another lot of problems. RAGE.

  3. The 'reaction' options all seem inappropriate for many of these blogs! Often want a 'Omg', 'oh, so sorry to hear/that's dreadful' or 'well done' button. The 'oh shit' one seemed appropriate here! (Penny)

    1. I have just changed them...specially for you!

  4. I agree with too many different hospitals. Can't believe the mental hospital didn't have her walking at with walker!! POA in USA required us to have attorney question my father and determine he "was in his
    right mind" before giving me POA.
    I hope things get better and CALMER for you both.

  5. Cheering for you.

    Kat in Kyoto