How do we convince him that not having things in order and on legal paper will cause so many struggles for us after he’s gone? Just the mention of it makes him shut down, understandably. I don’t want to upset him… any advice?
Why should he care now about how many struggles you and others have after he is gone? What type of stuff do you think he needs to decide upon NOW ?
That’s why it is called Advanced Planning - it is not easy to just decide at the last minute when there are other things one may want to be doing.
When a person dies without a will, they are said to have died “intestate.” That person's assets will be passed down to their heirs through what are called “intestate succession” rules - the state controls this line of distribution. Plenty of people die without all the planned stuff and order.
I had guardianship over my mother for many, many years - I handled everything but still I could not get her to decide on Living Will stuff - just too much thinking for her about death. So I said - just write it down. She did and it said in very primitive writing and words style -
“ I don’t want any brain operation, I don’t want to be just breathing - if I get to that shape, just let me die in peace”. ( the spelling wasn’t correct, the penmanship was awful but she signed and dated it -
when that time came shortly before she turned 90 - I handed over that little piece of paper to her doc and we knew exactly what she wanted.
Depending upon the prognosis - and the amount of fight he still wants to do - (and that is HIS decision - NOT yours) then you can know what type of orders the doc should be working towards. Maybe your dad should talk to his doc about what he is willing to do and for what purpose. If he can make that decision.
When my husband was dying - we had a bucket list that he shared with his doc and that was the guidepost for the doc. So the goal was to keep doing things that prolonged his life for the final wish (walk our daughter down the Marriage isle). Once the last thing was done on the bucket list (although he still left me with a to-do list ), his doc, per my husbands’ request, stopped all medications and treatments that were extending his life - remaining only on pain medications. He died 2-weeks later, peacefully, in our home after finishing all his good-byes and telling people he was off to his next great adventure.
In my Will, I have planned my last wish of (I guess you could call it) nutrients. ICE CREAM - the more the better - I didn’t pick a flavor.
Now it has all been planned and organized -
Let him do what he wants in his last days - you and the others can make do and work things out - or maybe you won’t.
It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna