It's so rough watching our parents get older and trying to cope with knowing what the future will be but not wanting it to happen. I lost my father in 2013 on Fathers Day and it has been hard for me to read what a lot of the members have / are going through.
I always say to remember the good times not the bad ones.
I am going through a small part of this now also. Mom (89) had a stroke on Wednesday night, thankfully only last some use of her left arm. I fear that it is about time to have the maybe you all shouldn't be living by yourself any longer.
Boy you guys have no idea on how rough trying to take care of an parent is!!!!!!!!!! My father-in-law turned 89 in September, my mother-in-law died in May so my husband, Mike, and I have been trying to help him out. He has another son who lives three doors down from him but that son doesn't like his father. We live 30 minutes away from him. We try to go done twice a week but lately it has been every other day. Here is one story you guys are going to laugh and then shake your head and say "Wow".
My husband's uncle, his father's brother, lives next door and is being taken care of my Mike's cousin, Denise. Last Wednesday we had to go down for Mike to work on the boiler in his uncle's house. Lol, Mike's uncle has Alzheimer's and he keeps messing around with the boiler because in his world it isn't working right. So anyway, Mike's dad comes over while we are there and ask me if I will go down with him to his accountant to get his taxes done. I said yes. I told him I will call Danny and get an appointment. Now right before this, Mike and I got into a very long conversation with his dad about driving. He wants to cancel his insurance because he is done driving. After a long conversation I figured something happen with him driving that scared him. He only goes about 25 miles an hour and just up the street about 2 miles to the grocery store and bank once every two weeks. So I say ok.
After Mike was done working on the boiler and getting it up and running we left and stopped at the local restaurant we go to, it was after 2 in the afternoon. We always sit at the bar and just chit chat with everyone there. So it is now 4 and my cell rings, it is Denise. She says "Julie can you and Mike come back down? The Police just brought Unc (Mike's father) home." I asked what police and she says the local police. Her father is a retired police officer with the police department and they all know him and Mike's father. So Mike calls the police station to find out what happen. Well Mike's dad decided to drive to his accountant, which is a good 15 miles away thru the northern part of Pittsburgh. Coming home his truck starts to overheat, he keeps driving. A police officer sees this smoke pouring out from under the hood and she flashes her lights and pulls him over, she starts to get out of her car and he pulls back onto the road and drives away. This happens four times! Finally she calls for back up and they get him to stop about a 1/2 mile from his home. They end up calling the fire department because of all the smoke that is coming from the hood. Well the one officer recognized Pete and drove him home. Why did he continue to drive away from the officer? He said he thought she wanted to drive around him! Needless to say, we now have his truck and the police will be taking his licenses off of him.
Lol, this is just one issue we have been dealing with lately!!!
OK, I'll stop complaining about weird conversations on the phone! Actually, when my Dad married a 25 year old when he was 52 I was worried. All I can say now is she is an angel. He will be 89 in May and she is still with him! Relieves us kids from the care taking
I had seen dad just 4 months ago when he (and mom) left for their condo in Florida. The spend summers up here and winter down south.
Once they got to Florida, my dad's health (he has both parkinsons and alzheimers) really took a nosedive. It got so bad that Mom had to change the lock on their front door just so that Dad would not wonder out in the middle of the night.
About 3 months ago, it got so bad that mom had no choice. He had to go into a "Home". My and my brothers supported Mom's decision. Mom (who is 78) simply can not give Dad the level of care that he needs. Also, the stress on her was way beyond what she could handle. For the health and benefit of both of them, Dad had to go.
You can imagine the mountain of guilt Mom had, but she got through it. She took time, did research, and chose one of the best facilities for the memory impaired. When I visited him (every day last week), it was obvious that dad was well cared for. On one unannounced visit, I found dad sitting in a screened patio enjoying the fresh air. He had on clean clothes, and just had a hair cut. I was also impressed on how clean the place smelled and how spotless everything was. Even his room (which I asked to see on the way out) was clean. Floor shone like a mirror, bed made, and the bathroom was immaculate. That was the only part of the trip that made me feel good about things.
What was rough was seeing Dad. What a difference the last 4 months made! He had shriveled (but not from neglect) down to about 110 pounds, his eyes were sunken, and his dementia had taken over. Mom did her best to prepare me, but when we sat down to talk, and I got a good look at him, I just lost it. Dad seemed happy though. His dementia has taken him back to happy times and, thank God, not all of the rough times he has been through in his hard life. He is happy inside his own mind.
Last Tuesday, was one of his really bad days. We found him sitting, mouth open, staring out into space. Although he was catatonic, mom kept trying to have a conversation with him. After about 3 minutes, I stopped her and said "let's go". I explained on the way out that she was not doing herself or dad any good. Dad was simply having a bad day and we can always see him tomorrow. I think that this helped Mom. She now knows it is ok to accept things and that she need not push it.
Thanks everybody. I am very thankful to be part of this community where I can "Vent" things. I truly appreciate the sharing and emotional support.
Before my ffirst visit, mom had me read an article on how to interact with him. Basically, it said that patients like dad are happy in their own reality, so just humor him. That's what I did. For hours he went on about a new motor inn that he was about to build.
Yes surely it isn't easy to see parents fade. My dad passed away from lung disease before Alzheimer's took all of his memory, he didn't usually know what happened 10 minutes ago, but he still knew who his family was.
Weird behaviors and anxiety were no fun either. As a caregiver one needs to take care of themselves too. Use a respite care service and any other resources that are available. When the time comes that the best place for your loved one is in a facility visit often and go at different times of day if you can.
Trying to correct or talk sense to someone in this state only leads to frustration for all involved. Be well.
Yes I also have been ruing into family issues over the past year or so . My mother needed to leave and eventually divorce my father after 54 years of marriage. She is a type 1 diabetic – which is like watching a child with dementia. She spent mainly 9 months with us and eventually we found she needed assisted living home. She really enjoys it there as it is more military regimented as what she needs, even though we tried that at our own house and she fought it the entire time.
Not easy being the oldest as my brother cannot take the responsibilities that I have taken over to control her diabetes thru a great system called dexcom ( PM me for more info if you would like ) - making all the affidavits , taking POA, attorneys, assisted living , and all financials including finding Medicare supplemental outside the gap policy. And unfortunately my outside family thinks I took sides – when I was just looking out for the well being of my sick mother.
And the list continues to grow – but she forgets on how much I actually do for her, that is the saddest part of this whole thing, mainly because on onset dementia.
The last 3 years of my mother's life was bad. The last year it was 24 hour care at home, then over medicated. Constant trips to the hospital and finally a nursing home. The first nursing home could not give her adequate care so we moved her. Still had 24 hour sitters. All kinds of bad health problems.
The thing is, up until the last 4 or 5 months, her mind was sharp as a tack. That is bad in it's on way. Of course, dementia and Alzheimer's is devastating too.
John, your Mom and yourself made the right decision on getting him in a home. Even though your Mom did her best to keep him safe sometimes that is just not enough when they get to a certain point.
My grandmother had lived with us for about 15 years when I was growing up. We had a large old brick two story farmhouse and she had the upstairs which was smaller but still spacious. After about 5 years she started getting very forgetful. This was before a time when there was such a thing called Alzheimers, they were simply senile. She could recite poetry she learned as a child yet couldn't remember what happened an hour before. Things kept getting worse to the point where she had a time remembering who people were. My Mother moved my older brother and I up there into a bedroom next to hers so we could "keep an eye on her" and make sure she didn't have any problems. As my brother went away to college I was alone to help her out as I could. I still remember to this day about 45 years later that horrible sound of her falling out of bed, hitting the floor and breaking her hip. The sounds of her crying still haunt me. Needless to say she had to be admitted into the hospital and then a nursing home. She often had no idea when even family visited her. Let the home personnel take good care of him. It sounds like you are lucky to have him in a great one.