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Minor Deity
Picture of Amanda
posted
I've been trying to persuade my brother and SIL to facilitate Mom's voting (they live near her in her FL assisted living facility).

She's been very interested in the elections and Trump (against him!) and has been a registered Democrat since well before 2016.

They aren't helping it to happen - I think they just don't want to go to the trouble, even though they talk a good game about wanting to get Trump out of office.

Especially since they live in FL this really bothers me. I'm sending this article to them, for whatever good it may do. This man's situation sounds much like Mom's except that she is also pretty deaf (mostly refuses to wear her hearing aids - even her oxygen).

Her disabilities, including her macular degeneration-induced blindness, make them sound all the more alike, especially since Mom hasn't forgotten her grandchildren's names or equal memory issues. Furthermore, now that she was finally permitted to have them (bro and SIL) visit her for the first time in over six months it helped a lot - to bring her back to "reality". Losing all her senses except tactile and taste/olfactory, and being so isolated all this time, has had, I think, much to do with her dementia and problems with short-term memory. She's been in a state of almost complete sensory deprivation!

It's very upsetting to me that they are usurping her right to vote since I think it would not only contribute to this crucial election, but I think it would also contribute positively to her sense of continuing to be a part of this world at the age of 96.

Not that I can do anything about it, but I'd like to know how you see this situation - do you agree with the author that adults with dementia should be helped to vote? (I'm sure it's a matter of the degree of dementia, but based on the level described in this article and my mother's case, as near as you can tell.)

can adults with dementia vote?


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The most dangerous word in the language is "obvious"

 
Posts: 13094 | Location: PA | Registered: 20 April 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
knitterati
Beatification Candidate
Picture of AdagioM
posted Hide Post
If Mom wants to vote, she should. And her assisted living facility can help her with that. My mom-in-law is in assisted living in Missouri, and she will be voting.


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http://pdxknitterati.com

 
Posts: 8471 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 06 June 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Minor Deity
Picture of Amanda
posted Hide Post
Thanks, AdagioM.

I agree with you. Unfortunately, I have been pretty much cut off from contact with my mother my SIL and surviving brother. SIL has been supervising her care including insurance issues and for simplicity, the facility only delegates all her affairs to a single family member (especially when it comes to a medical emergency).

I can only call her at random times (basically, if I call when the staff are bringing her dinner which is +/- 5 PM, since it's a matter of their hearing the phone ringing - recalling that she's deaf.

Her facility is pretty much the only one in the Tampa area without a single COVID case among staff or patients, and that's because of their extreme stringency in not admitting visitors.

The negative side (as is all too common)) is that it's dramatically worsened her cognitive difficulties for the reasons described. Consider that she is unable to listen to anything (radio, "talking books" and scarcely any phone communication with a great deal of confabulation - i.e., what does she actually hear?)

Likewise, she can't read or watch anything on TV or computer owing to the blindness. She has also had no socialization since March except for staff bringing meals to her nice apartment.

All together, this has greatly aggravated not only her memory problems but also led to increasing confusion between dreams (she mostly sleeps) and what is "real". (Up and down in that regard, but she still remembers about Trump! That is, even though she occasionally wonders if her long dead siblings and parents are down the hall!)

I'm sure there are legal issues I could push but with relationships already as tense as they are, I can't see gaining anything positive by trying to get the voting issue altered. It's also one of those things where Mom is also afraid to ask for anything vis a vis SIL She is so helpless and dependent on those nearby relations..

I can only hope they will read the article I posted above and a note I appended. I'm afraid I can all too well picture asking Mom about her wishes vis a vis voting, only to have her drop the issue - even to "forget" it if the facility brings it up at my request.

All I know is given her remaining political concerns (re article) it certainly sounds like she is indeed being "disenfranchised."


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The most dangerous word in the language is "obvious"

 
Posts: 13094 | Location: PA | Registered: 20 April 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Has Achieved Nirvana
Picture of Daniel
posted Hide Post
Has she registered to vote? Can she vote by mail?

I, too, tend to think things should be a certain way among family members. In my experience, I'm disappointed often.

It's clear that you mean well. I'm sorry you're encountering resistance.
 
Posts: 22529 | Registered: 31 March 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Minor Deity
Picture of Amanda
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Daniel:
Has she registered to vote? Can she vote by mail?

I, too, tend to think things should be a certain way among family members. In my experience, I'm disappointed often.

It's clear that you mean well. I'm sorry you're encountering resistance.


Thanks, Daniel.

As I mentioned, she's been registered to vote for years.
Apparently, SIL sees things differently from brother. He reported (sent him the article along with encouraging note about her voting) that her Assisted Living facility has made it virtually impossible for them to register this year. They are using the excuse of the COVID virus. They are still on lockdown.

(There are also piles of paperwork for them or relatives to complete.)

Note: most of the residents are Republicans. I wonder how true this is of other facilities. I'm guessing that excluding nursing homes, most of the residents ARE Republicans, because they are self-pay. Mom has reported in the past (before COVID) that she didn't dare discuss politics with other residents because it seemed they all supported Trump.

SIL reported to me even at the 2016 elections, that she refused to go through any steps to allow Mom to vote, emphasizing the difficulties at the facility. She also highlighted how poor her mental status was, with examples.
Note, I visited her (sadly, undoubtedly for the last time) in April of 2016 and know she was at least as competent then as the man highlighted in the story. (Remember there was no COVID then.)

SIL just didn't want to bother. Maybe this year there really were insurmountable obstacles. Brother wrote me speculating about whether Mom's voting rights had been illegally curtailed. That's a large voting bloc!

I can think of great many reasons why the Governor (obeying Trump's orders) might indeed have effectively disenfranchised residents in long-term care facilities. There may be a supposition that they are apt to vote Biden this time around. And you, know, anything to block demographics perceived as a risk to him from casting votes this year! I've heard that the elderly in general were perceived as having turned to the Left because of Trump's promised safety net policies.

I wonder if other GOP Governors have behaved similarly. The numbers could add up.


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The most dangerous word in the language is "obvious"

 
Posts: 13094 | Location: PA | Registered: 20 April 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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