Each month there are some bills that we just expect. We know that we have to pay the mortgage, the electric bill, the credit card bills where we have put all the groceries. We just know that those (and so many more) are just the cost of livin. We expect them. But every now and then we get hit with one that we just didn’t see coming.
I am not talking about the bill for the new tires on the car, or the dishwasher repair, or even the new roof.
No I am talking about the bill that comes when your teenage daughter discovers she is pregnant, and you discover that your health insurance doesn’t cover those costs. You really need to check! Most family insurance covers maternity benefits for mom, but not daughter. Families don’t discover that until too late! Yet another reason to have a conversation about sexuality and values and contraceptives!
But I have just learned there is a conversation that is needed on the other side of life! The Wall Street Journal reports that “Twenty-nine states have “filial support” laws that could be used to go after patients’ adult children for unpaid long-term-care bills.” That’s right! In a majority of states, children can be held responsible for the long term care of parents. I didn’t see that one coming! (You can read the article here.)
This is another conversation we must have–this time with our parents. What preparations have they made in the good chance that they need long term care? Who is responsible for the payments?
It is also a conversation we must have as a society. We are really getting caught in a Catch–2222. We don’t want to teach children about contraception, nor do we want to pay for babies born to children. We complain about rising Medicare cost, but can’t ration care, nor even have the beds to care for adults who are living longer.
So who will pay the bill?