This morning I phoned my mother to wish her a happy Mothers Day and to see how she is. She was surprisingly bright and we managed to have a reasonable conversation for a short while. As I’ve mentioned before my mother has been suffering from memory loss for about 5 years (that is, noticeable memory loss) and we’ve recently had a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, although she is unaware of this.

Mam is currently going for assessment, once a week, at a day centre attached to a local mental health hospital to determine how to take her case forward. As a stroppy, independent type she has taken it into her head not to go from time to time and has missed three days out of seven, so far. This has an impact on the assessment process and possibly what care will be given to her. If she is unwilling to attend day centres then, as places are in great demand, it may be decided to not give her the place she has been provisionally allocated (in one of the best day centres in the county) and give it to someone more willing to attend.

I discovered today that when she decided not to go to the day centre last Thursday she “gave the girl who drives the bus a tenner for her trouble” as she put it!

Although I’ve told Mam not to do this again as “the girl will get into trouble” and she has agreed, I have no idea whether or not she will stop doing it. I suspect that she probably tries to pay for the hospital transport every week.

It would be possible for an unscrupulous person to take money from my Mam on a regular basis – so my quandary is – do I report this incident to the hospital or do I shut up because it would be causing trouble?

As a professional auditor my tendency would be to report it and ask how they manage such incidents: ” Do they have a procedure?”, as a concerned daughter it is less black and white – will it affect her care? Just to complicate matters I am 230 miles way from where this is all going on. The hospital currently deals with my sister, who lives very close to Mam, but I know she will not want to tackle this one. I don’t have to deal with the consequences of my actions – whatever they are – my sister will.

At the moment power of attorney is unlikely – it would be very difficult to get her to a solicitor (she hates them) and she is so determined to be independent that it is impossible to help her manage her money – or to take control of paying bills etc. The sad thing is that she will have to get worse for us to be able to protect her from herself.