Stories From Our Clients

A Family in Conflict

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Three Sisters, Dad and Serious Mistrust Among Siblings

Three sisters lived in different cities, with only one sister living near their Dad. Their Dad had dementia. He was a man of means, but handling his finances was a problem for his daughters because they could not work together effectively. They had hired a professional, licensed fiduciary who contacted us for help with the sibling disputes. The 3 sisters agreed to a series of family mediation telephone meetings, which took place over two months.

The first thing we did was to help them identify why there was so much family conflict and mistrust. Talking through their issues was very helpful. We assisted them in developing a strategy for communicating via text and phone calls to update each other with the status of Dad's progress every day. The sister who lived nearby was willing to initiate this, and the others were satisfied.

We Found Common Ground Through Mediation

One at a time, we went through each of the problems they had with one another in caring for their father. We found common ground in that everyone wanted what was best for Dad. Our skills in family mediation and conflict resolution helped them put their differences into words and work out how to relate to each other around Dad's caregiving needs. We played a major role in improving their communication. The fiduciary was a part of the phone conferences at times. A professional care manager participated in one of them as well.

Their Dad died a few months after we began working with the family. Fortunately, for the time between our involvement and the end of Dad's life, they were able to put their differences aside, with our guidance, and arrive at solutions that worked for everyone.