Mary, my mother is the most wonderful, loving, funny, caring person ever. She is 89 and after a couple of one-month stints in the nursing home to recover from persistent UTI's, my sister, brother and I finally told her she just couldn't go back home and live alone any more. It was just too hard on the family. In November, I drove the 600 miles up there and got her moved in to a wonderful independent living apartment that is in a separate wing from the nursing home. It has been the best thing she ever did. She is completely independent and responsible for everything from her laundry to her medications. But she has meals provided in a dining room and an in-house Life Line just in case something happens. It's been the very best compromise for all of us. Would your MIL be open to something like this if it's available in her area?
If life gives you lemons, make lemonade. If life gives you tomatoes, make Bloody Marys.