Mom passed away, no Will, what next?
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Mom passed away, no Will, what next?

This is a discussion on Mom passed away, no Will, what next? within the Grieving forums, part of the Life's Other Challenges category; My mother, 58, finally lost the battle with cancer and the "treatments" this Monday. She leaves not only me, her ...

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Old 12-11-14, 01:23 PM   #1
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Question Mom passed away, no Will, what next?

My mother, 58, finally lost the battle with cancer and the "treatments" this Monday. She leaves not only me, her youngest son, but my older brother and eldest sister.

I've been with my mom since day one of all this (one year ago). I was there by her side when she got the diagnosis. I was there by her side when she received her first treatment. And I was there when she took her last breath, which will haunt me til my end. I've been by my mom's side since birth and I've been the one to look after her during all of this, during her divorce, all her ups and downs, with no regrets other than I shouldn't have let her take the treatments because that's what I think she succumbed to, not the cancer.

They've only been "there" when they needed something. They took and took and took from her over the past five years, that she was left with nothing before she was even diagnosed. And even after that, they still took from her. Their debts to her, amount to over ten thousand dollars each. Her inheritance she received from her mother-in-law, gone, to each of them from "borrowing" over the years, never paying back a single cent.

Neither my brother nor sister took responsibility as her children, to care for her, even before the cancer. Whereas I, worked my fingers to the knuckle to try and provide a home for us, as she couldn't work. It was up to me to provide groceries and I even had to cover some of her prescriptions, all on a minimum wage job that nearly put my health at severe risk too. We barely got by but I managed it; I had to.

She spent many a days in the hospital from side effects, catching a virus and up to this last visit which was over a month before going home, I was the one who stayed with her, day and night. My brother and sister didn't bother at all. When I would finish work (a job that I lost because of this hardship), I stopped at home to change and headed to the hospital to be with my mom till bed time, every day she was in there. Where were they? Not at work, neither of them worked. So where were they? My sister was most likely unconscious from popping so many pills and my brother was freeloading at my place, passed out on the couch or playing video games, devouring my pantry and leaving a trail of filth throughout our home. Not once did they consider "I should go spend the day with mom, give brother a day to relax".

I regret none of this. I loved my mom. I asked for the least, but the sacrifices she made for all three of us growing up, it was owed to her that we all be there for her. It's just sad that my siblings do not feel the same. All they have done is take and take and take from her over the past decade (or more). Each of them made twice the money I did yet they never had a cent to their name. They'd always be "borrowing" from my mom. Over the years, she's provided to each of them a vehicle and too often fill their cupboards. She bailed them out of many debts and collections. Her inheritance from her mother-in-law? Gone. Gobbled up by my brother and sister, my mother denied of her dream to have used it as a down payment on a house we could call "ours" (as we've always rented, never owning). I never asked for anything but she was always there for me as I was for her. If I did borrow, I paid back. That's why she never kept record of mine in her book whereas she did with my siblings which shows they are in debt to her of over ten thousand dollars each to this day.

We had in plan, for a Will to be made in her last couple months of life. But my grandparents stepped in and decided to take control of things and put a stop to that. (I don't know their reasons). So there is no legal documents that show what my mom would like to pass on, nothing other than a hand-written note that she entrusted to me. A note that I must find among her things that are scattered about because we moved not long before all this came to light.

It's been only two days since her passing and already I've been asked about certain belongings and jewelry. Two days and they've already shown their true form of being vultures.

I made it very clear that nothing leaves this house, unless it is something she has marked on that paper or voiced to me and that until I find it, nothing leaves. From the beginning of all of this, and the nurses can account for her words, she requested that I be in control of everything. I was to be the decision maker should she be incapacitated. I was to be the power-of-attorney, executor, whatever was necessary to see her wished fulfilled in the end. But it was taken away, not of her choice.

So now I lay in bed restless, wondering what they will do. There being no Will means everything and anything is up for grabs. They could literally rob me of everything that is hers, that is ours.

Anything that goes to my sister, I know from her history, will be pawned and sold. Of course, if it was my mom's wish for her to have it, then it is my sisters choice to do as she pleases. As would be the same for my brother. My sister knows she has crossed the line with all the family one too many times, I do not worry so much about her being sly. She knows I won't fall down easily. My brother though, is requesting certain things; Things that I know were not expressed in my mother's "note", such as her bed and dressers. He is in belief that she wanted him to have that bed but in reality, him and his (ex)girlfriend were to buy that bed from her as she disliked it at first so they were going to make a deal on it, and she would buy another.

So I fear the coming storm that they will bring to our home. I am exhausted and drained from having to bare all of this on my own for so long, I'm at a loss as to what I should do? What are my options?
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Old 12-11-14, 01:55 PM   #2
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This is the time more than ever to seize it and claim the same "rights" as they do in trying to take everything away from your mother's possessions. As your mother wished, you are to be in control of everything and it is in your power to do just that regardless of whatever is "up for grabs". You have the dignity to hold your dear mother's belongings better than anybody else can!
Despite no Will, all the things that can be "up for grabs" can be automatically yours, in that case. Change the locks if you need to, if it applies. Use any legal loophole that allows you to hold onto all the things your mother granted you, even before you find that note. That note could be the thing that proves you have all rights to her things

Stand up for your mother's belongings, my friend, and take charge!
I get a good feeling she will be proud of you. Take care of your siblings, but don't let them take advantage of you! Give an inch, and they will certainly take more than a mile.

As a university student, I can only give you as much as I know, and that is how to be a strong and proud force. For legal advice, there's always lawyers who will offer a free consultation. A little research to fuel your fight never hurt anybody.

Much love and kudos!
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Old 12-11-14, 01:57 PM   #3
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I'll also add that maybe it's time for your siblings to get onto their own two feet and support themselves. You can't always feed a child before he has to feed himself.

Good luck!
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Old 12-11-14, 02:06 PM   #4
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I am sorry to hear about this, may your mom rest in piece, my condolences.
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Old 12-12-14, 06:52 AM   #5
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This really enrages me as your useless siblings should have been kicked out of your place and your life ages ago and that your grandparents decided to step in without giving you any reason as to why (wtf!). It will be hard but do whatever you can to keep everything and give nothing to all those who basically have taken advantage or abandoned your late beloved mom. Definitely get legal aid, find loopholes especially since only you took care of everything selflessly. IF there is anytime to be righteously selfish it is now. Simply cannot believe being the youngest of the family you have proven to be the most responsible and completely dependable. Really, do what you can, then do your best to improve upon your life because it seems no other family is being supportive. You did a wonderful thing sacrificing part of your life for someone who actually cared for and entrusted you in turn to care for her. I really wish there was someone out there who can provide legal advice or refer you to the best legal aid. Whatever items/accounts you can store away elsewhere for safekeeping do so. Holy shit they make more money than you and you have to support them WTF. So sorry this has happened to you. Depending on the laws in your state or province etc. maybe if there's a way to also prove what is considered "abuse" towards your mom under the law, that might leverage your case. Again sorry I could not even offer much advice. However, if I was a lawyer I would find a way to criminally charge them all or something.
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Old 12-12-14, 11:47 PM   #6
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Thank you for the kind words and advice. It's all given me more to think about, positively. They always had excuses as to why they couldn't visit her, be it at home or in the hospital. And as bad as it sounds but I hope it weighs heavily on them for their life.

Instead of mourning this day, I spent it cleaning a mess not of my doing. I've barely been living in my own home for the past two months, paying for someone else to make a mess of it. I'll give him the week to grieve and then I shall say it's time to leave. My sister knows to not even try to test me right now as she drew the line last night.

The thought of her not being here anymore hasn't sunk in yet I don't think. It feels more like she is still in the hospital and I'm just stopping by home for a bit, since it felt like she was there more than here.

Again thank you.
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Old 12-13-14, 12:23 AM   #7
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It is not surprising that a significant change such as that may not register right away. Your beloved mom will always be in your heart, albeit you will do a few more things for her with regards to caring for her estate, property etc. Even if it means that you will find ways to do this, get your own life (you really deserve one after all of this) in order, and possibly estrange yourself from the rest of the uncaring/unhelpful family members. It was still heartbreaking to read again how you and your mom seemed to be alone in the world in many ways caring and being there for each other as a real family (the 2 of you).
Hopefully you will have good news later on despite the tragedy then share how it went so that others who will experience something similar could relate, have an idea of what to do and even maybe get into discussions that would reopen then re-expose such issues in hopes that the laws will change accordingly.
Yes I do know of "fairweather" relatives that only contact when they want something or just to give others the impression that they are related. They don't contribute, help, or even at times acknowledge others unless it directly affects them somehow.
Again best of luck!
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Old 12-21-14, 12:27 AM   #8
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I'm sorry for your loss and that you have to deal with all that drama from your family on top of everything else.

My mom died last month after a relatively brief illness. She went from being fully independent to a serious illness overnight which left her unable to care for herself. We placed her in a nursing home for rehabilitation with every expectation she would be fully recovered in a matter of weeks, but she passed away unexpectedly.

I was her power-of-attorney too, but she had recently moved and gotten rid of most of her belongings. I only have one sibling and we were to split evenly what little money she had left, but any bills that might still come in need to be taken care first so there hasn't been any mention of it.

I live alone and my sister has her own family. We weren't that close before she got sick and if anything, it's drawn us closer together and we talk a lot more now than we have in years. One of both of us were at the nursing home every day to root her on and kept in close contact as to how she was doing. Hopefully things will work themselves out for your family and they see what's really important instead of squabbling over material things.

I don't know if her passing has really sunk in yet for me either, but it does seem strange her not being here for the holidays. I hope you can find happiness and peace of mind in the coming days and wish you all the best.
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