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Thread: Making life easier for your family...

  1. #1
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    Making life easier for your family...

    The couple that has been living next to me for 20 years have been wonderful friends and neighbors. They are in their early 70s. Both in extremely good health, and super smart.

    He is your typical absent-minded retired college professor, disconnected from the cares of the world.

    She is a retired manager from the technology sector, and ran all of the practical affairs of their lives - bank accounts, bill paying, insurance, and so on.

    Recently she had a minor slip-and-fall, which produced a small brain bleed that they didn't notice until she developed sudden personality changes the next day.

    Symptoms much like a stroke. Much of her memory and ability to focus simply gone. It will be some time before things return to "normal" for her, if they ever do.

    She no longer remembered the passwords to their computers, their bank accounts, or even where their accounts were, where their various funds were, which routine bills had to be paid, and all that sort of thing. And, efficient as she was, she was doing almost everything online.

    He never knew any of this information to begin with.

    It has taken me a good solid month to locate some of this information for him, so that he could even begin to handle the routine financial matters needed for them to continue to function.

    So, make sure your family has a way of understanding how to recover if you should have some sudden change of capabilities. It is very stressful to them to have to deal with those matters when they are also trying to deal with the medical situation. These things can happen in a moment, without any warning.

  2. #2
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    I constantly explain this to DH. Record things clearly. File things together with like things. Get all the keys together in one place. Etc. etc.

    We do have a password file that is shared by both of us. But that said, he is so protective of household bills that I don’t know everything and I’m sure I would miss some if he suddenly was incapacitated. On the other hand, once I figured it out, by God, those payments would be automated, whichever ones could be automated. Of course that means you have to funnel a lot of money into the checking account but that’s fine, I would do that.

    As it is, certain bills are paid automatically and I THINK know his method for indicating that automatic payment but am not sure.

    in times of grief and loss we have foggy brains.

    Tomorrow we’re going to the funeral home to make arrangements. It suddenly occurred to me that if something happened to him, the last thing I want do during a time of shock and grief is to make tedious decisions about burial.

    Here is what caused me to put my foot down and say “we are going to make funeral plans and pay for it. “: When I asked him what he wants done at his funeral and body a disposal, etc., and I’ve asked several times, his response was “well, you can talk to my sister about that if you don’t wanna make the decisions. “


    No buddy, I will not have your sister make these decisions. So tomorrow it’s off to the funeral home we are going.
    I am not a serious person.

  3. #3
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    One thing sweetly simple about living in Hermann is that so many of our utilities are provided by the city of Hermann: water, garbage, gas, electric, sewer. One payment. Oh, fire protection is a separate bill because it’s privately funded.

    In the city of St. Louis we had several vendors for the services over the years.

    about getting keys all together and DH, who is not as organized as I am: a couple months ago I said, OK I am going to work on keys. We now have the total number of buildings we will ever own. There’s not going to be more buildings. So, I got all the household keys together and there weren’t that many, and I marked them.

    Then I told DH “now we’re going to gather all the motor vehicle keys and put them in one place. They will be marked.” we have many vehicles. I had to keep asking until I learned that the key to the tractor and the key to the lawnmower are kept in those vehicles. Well, OK I guess that’s fine. They are all in a locked garage.

    But it just occurred to me that I’m not sure we have written down the Entry code for that garage.
    Last edited by iris lilies; 4-8-24 at 5:13pm.
    I am not a serious person.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bae View Post
    The couple that has been living next to me for 20 years have been wonderful friends and neighbors. They are in their early 70s. Both in extremely good health, and super smart.

    He is your typical absent-minded retired college professor, disconnected from the cares of the world.

    She is a retired manager from the technology sector, and ran all of the practical affairs of their lives - bank accounts, bill paying, insurance, and so on.

    Recently she had a minor slip-and-fall, which produced a small brain bleed that they didn't notice until she developed sudden personality changes the next day.

    Symptoms much like a stroke. Much of her memory and ability to focus simply gone. It will be some time before things return to "normal" for her, if they ever do.

    She no longer remembered the passwords to their computers, their bank accounts, or even where their accounts were, where their various funds were, which routine bills had to be paid, and all that sort of thing. And, efficient as she was, she was doing almost everything online.

    He never knew any of this information to begin with.

    It has taken me a good solid month to locate some of this information for him, so that he could even begin to handle the routine financial matters needed for them to continue to function.

    So, make sure your family has a way of understanding how to recover if you should have some sudden change of capabilities. It is very stressful to them to have to deal with those matters when they are also trying to deal with the medical situation. These things can happen in a moment, without any warning.

    Or your business partners, etc!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I file things, and they are easy to retrieve. The idiot uses the pile system, which makes things so much fun, thankfully he is completely electronic incapable.
    The other coowner, backed out after he realized when idiot wrecked, it meant not only was he liable, he had to step up.
    good times, not.


    Parents, thankfully showed a sibling, as my father once tried to show me, but his system was so convoluted (like 10 different places for things and passwords, etc), that it made no sense to me or my mother.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Tradd's Avatar
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    I’m putting together what I refer to as the “Tradd’s dead - now what?” binder

  6. #6
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    When I was diagnosed, I bought two copies of this, to separate personal and business stuff.


    I'm Dead, Now What! Organizer Hardcover-spiral

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1441317996

  7. #7
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    Bae, thank you for this reminder to sort this all out. I know we have done only a portion of what we need to do in this department. Your neighbor's story is much like some friends from Michigan--she was struck and hit by a car in the parking lot of the grocery, and never recovered from the brain damage. He had to retire to be with her at all times and now is struggling with the need to put her into a facility, as she has began to wander, and he is 80, and it's so rough for both of them. Things can change in an instant.

  8. #8
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToomuchStuff View Post
    When I was diagnosed, I bought two copies of this, to separate personal and business stuff.


    I'm Dead, Now What! Organizer Hardcover-spiral


    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1441317996
    we have had for many years the thing we call “the legacy file “which is a bag full of key financial documents.


    But we are less organized for the event that one of us is incapacitated.
    I am not a serious person.

  9. #9
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    Thanks, toomuchstuff, just ordered one for me and one for my husband. Looks good.

  10. #10
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    I have been thinking about this a lot lately and fully realize that DH would be absolutely helpless regarding administrative and financial matters since I take care of all of that now. He just inherited several IRAs after his mother's passing and is clueless about how to proceed with maintaining or investing. I am going to order one of those binders and get everything in there. Both of my parents passed at the age I am now so that adds to the pressure. As far as final arrangements, I don't have any strong feelings about where to be interred or scattered so that is a head-scratcher since we may not even be living in this state in the near future. I had to go casket shopping for my mother's burial and make her arrangements (and my brother's) when I was 35; it was traumatic trying to figure all that out. I don't want to leave those decisions to others if it can be helped. Another issue is that we haven't had any money/inheritance discussions with DD yet and that needs to happen.

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