Caregiver Logo and book cover depicting hands of opportunistic puppet hands with red broken heart and dollar signs

This website, and my book, shares my and other’s personal challenges and horrific situations. Here is what I wish I would have known about caregiving…

image depicting no control and alone

I Wish I Would Have Known This About Caregiving… 

You can avoid and overcome difficulties that I and others have experienced. This website and my book shares my and other “adult children’s” personal challenges and horrific situations that have occurred. I hope this serves as a gateway of communication between you and your family. I am not alone, and neither are you. In fact, many of us come from dysfunctional families, and it is up to us to help one another on our journey with our loved ones.


You might find my choice of words, CareGivers ScareTakers, interesting.

Caregiver: a person who gives direct care to a client who needs assistance. 

ScareTaker: I’m reinventing this word. For our purposes, it refers to someone caring for a client who manipulates the client’s mind and money, and attempts to influence family, friends and other caregivers. Can be One and the Same, can’t it?


More than 40 million Americans are providing some type of care for an older relative. Even if you are currently in sound physical and mental health, at some point, you are likely to need extra care whether you are living on your own or already in assisted living. It is important that you and your adult children understand what caregiving entails, from hiring and working with caregivers, whether you’re finding people on your own or working with an agency to managing paperwork for insurance or medical care. At what point do you determine that you may need assistance?


What can be done? Ideally, you want to have a frank discussion with your family while minds are still clear. All the family should be present, even if by Zoom. If you don’t have a sibling, have a mutual friend or someone familiar to your family with you when you have the conversation. This person will serve as a comfort for both of you and as a witness. Some adult children and seniors find it very difficult to discuss the “golden years”. Now, some are calling it the “rusty years”! This website will offer stories that illustrate different situations that have arisen because of a lack of communication, misunderstandings and fraudulent caregivers…and offer solutions.

PODCAST :  How to Find a Caregiver You Can Trust 

Episode 161 of Wickedly Smart Women Podcast with Anjel B Hartwell

When Jacci Perry-Ryan's father fell and broke a hip, she did what most adult children do. She hired a home healthcare agency, trusting that their #caregivers had been thoroughly vetted. But nothing could have been further from the truth.

 Jacci offers advice on using the Rule of Three to interview eldercare agencies, explaining what to look for in a caregiver and why it’s important to keep the relationship professional.

Listen in for insight on initiating the conversation about long-term care with your parents and learn how Jacci can help you find qualified caregivers and protect your loved ones from fraud and abuse.

You Are Not Alone.  

Read Over 50 Five-Star reviews from readers of the book with situations similar to yours. A few excerpts from the Testimonials.

Over 50 Amazon Customer Reviews


Photo of someone holding a copy of the book Caregivers Scaretakers on Amazon.

Rhonda Kelly | Amazon Review

"Jacci is a warrior who brings the hard truth of in home health care, health care workers and opportunists into the light."

"The author not only relate case histories, but tells you how to avoid getting taken in by the grifters who try to get in on the game."
Logo for amazon next to 5 star review for the book 'caregivers scaretakers'
Helen Chapman | Adolphus, KY
Ombudsman | Amazon Review Nov 18, 2023

 Read over 50  five-star reviews, from readers of the book with situations similar to yours, on the Testimonials page. You are not alone.


Photo of Author Jacklyn Ryan

My mission is to get better and stronger laws to protect our vulnerable loved ones “VLO’s”.  Namely to require fingerprinting and FBI Rapback for all caregivers in the industry, from daycare to senior care.  The stories in my book are “Only a Glimpse” of the daily atrocities that happen to our VLO’s.  I learned it wasn’t just my situations but many of us “adult children” are ill equipped on how to handle a crisis moment when we are instantly thrust into the wormhole of healthcare, regardless of our profession.  I am not alone and neither are you.  Many of us are from dysfunctional families and it is up to us to help one another on our journey with the care of our loved ones in their lasting years.  When reading Caregivers Scaretakers, you will learn what to look for and how to best qualify an agency or independent caregiver and mistakes to avoid.


Here are just a few true stories involving manipulation of seniors.

One type of person that takes advantage of seniors described as hoochie momma

"Hoochie Momma"

“Hoochie Mamma” was one of three caregivers for a senior man. She wore short shorts and low-cut tops, took the client to casinos and helped him lose his nest egg. All the time enjoying herself and his money. He is now in a rest home being paid for by medicaid.


A very mildly demented woman got into a disagreement with her caregiver. The caregiver called Dept. of Human Services (DHS) telling them that her client had been abandoned by her family, and that she was incompetent. DHS removed her from her home without contacting the woman’s three sons, who were all successful businessmen living out of state. They had to hire an attorney to help them get their mother released from DHS through the court system. It cost them thousands of $$$.

drawing man scaretaker victim


Jamaican Sweepstakes scams, Las Vegas Sweepstakes scams, roofing scammers, tree trimming scammers and more! This wealthy very trusting senior man was a victim of all. His daughter finally got it stopped after more than $150,000 disappeared.

There are many more tragic accounts in the book that we can learn from. You can also read more on our Stories/Blog page.

You may feel like you’re the only one going through a situation that seem unsurmountable, but you’re not alone. Read  OVER 50 five-star reviews, from readers of the book with situations similar to yours, on the Testimonials page. You are not alone.


Are you a planner? Many plan for vacations, parties, weddings, trips and about everything in our lives EXCEPT the EXIT.  — We don’t get out of here alive! 

Questions/Tips to Consider when Hiring a Caregiver & Brief Questions for Preparation

Enter your email to review our questionnaire along with tips to help you and your loved ones save thousands of dollars on your estate.


As you’re reading about these horrible experiences, you may say that these incidents could never happen to you. Well, I could have never imagined it! There’s no guarantee that a caregiver will not “turn on you” or defraud you or that you are isolated from scams. Just because you are coherent and getting along well doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be wearing a life alert. What if you are living alone and have a stroke? Your phone is on the counter while you are lying on the floor? Just because you seem to have everything “under control,” yet there are hospital visits and your house is very cluttered… who is to determine that “everything is ok”?

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This is not a clinical, legal, or financial website. This is a website to offer a collection of real-life, true anecdotes that did happen but are frequently only exposed in courtrooms and behind closed doors. Hopefully this website will raise the awareness of both seniors and adult children to encourage these critical and essential discussions about qualified personal care for your loved ones, where the care will be provided and how other essential medical, financial and legal decisions will be made. I encourage you, the responsible person, to understand that someone must be an advocate and WATCHDOG!

Image depicts need for open discussion of legal issues such as a power of attorney (POA), do not resuscitate (DNR), living will, and other matters related to estate planning. There needs to be an open discussion of financial aspects. Is there a will and a trust? Is there a “payable on death” (POD) on the financial accounts?


There needs to be an open discussion of physical aspects including the home and transportation. There needs to be an open discussion of legal issues such as a power of attorney (POA), do not resuscitate (DNR), living will, and other matters related to estate planning. There needs to be an open discussion of financial aspects. Is there a will and a trust? Is there a “payable on death” (POD) on the financial accounts?

If any of these items are not addressed, someone else or the government can suddenly become involved in YOUR family’s affairs. This website and forthcoming book is aimed at helping your family begin a conversation regarding your state of affairs and potential threats.  



I would love to hear your stories. There are many more stories and accounts in the book that we can learn from. You can also read more here on our Stories/Blog page. Don’t take our word for it. Here’s What Others Say:

lady image depicts a manipulator


A daughter living with her mother systematically depleted her mother’s estate by coercing her to fund various unsuccessful ventures. This went on for many years depleting a very large estate. The remaining family members are considering legal action to stop the carnage.

lady's image depicting a scheming look


One never knows what DHS is going to do. It so heavily depends upon the agent whose attention you have or do not have. My Mom was living in a roach infested old house with almost no food when DHS came knocking at my request because I lived many miles away and did not have the resources to get there. She, as many elderly do, rallied just enough that the agent did not perceive the extent of her dementia. He allowed her to stay in her home with no help and basically ignored the whole situation. When I got there, I had her committed into a home where she was taken care of. The authorities were of little help.


A son of one of two sisters retired to his home town to take care of his aging mother and her sister, his aunt. The two sisters had a friend/caregiver who became a huge influence over them. Through her influence, she persuaded the sisters to change their will and leave their money to a local charity and completely exclude the rightful heir.



Mom floated away from this world in 2017 after having lived a long active life raising a family, mostly as a single mom, and working in politics. Her journey downhill began with colon cancer, then breast cancer. Colon cancer returned, caregivers were hired, hospice was engaged and her daughter and daughter in law attended to her needs everyday. We had no real idea of her assets and she was very guarded about her future and prognosis, which was dire. She lived, with continuous care, for nearly six months. While we had a generally pleasant relationship with her, as did the rest of the family, wouldn’t it have been wonderful if she had helped us plan for her aftermath instead of the wild goose chase that poor communication caused? We loved her, but she is gone and we were left to figure out her estate.




We invite you to share your stories with us. Your stories will help us spread the word about the pitfalls of hiring strangers to care for your loved ones or you.

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Jacklyn (Jacci) Ryan is a Senior Care Advocate, Consultant, Speaker, and Author.  Jacci is a co-author of Wickedly Smart Women – Trusting Intuition, Taking Action, Transforming Worlds. She is a USA Today and WSJ-bestselling author featured in the anthology book: Success Mindsets published by Leaders Press.  I am like you. I was working in my career when a crisis happened. Dad fell and broke his hip. “One Fall Does it All”. His independent living ceased. I interviewed a Home Care Agency that I was referred to and believed they would provide good quality care for him. I entered into the wormhole of home caregiving. First for my dad, later for my mother, and then I learned of other adult children experiencing the same difficult circumstance. Trusting Agencies to Care for Our Loved Ones. My experience and this book, ‘CareGivers ScareTakers’ reveals the gut wrenching difficulties that caring for a loved one at home involves. Be Aware and Be Prepared! Raising the Bar on Caregivers will Raise the Bar on the Quality of Care.