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could i, dare i. - Carers UK Forum

could i, dare i.

For issues specific to caring for someone with dementia.
i have a terrible time with my mum when i visit, and i am absolutely drained out.

my only problem is how would she get her milk. she is not eating, only chocolate and biscuits, but drinking. She has crossroads going in 5 days a week, so somebody would see if she was ok.

if i ordered her milk and a few goodies on line from tesco, would i be a terrible daughter. i cannot go on like this. I am visiting 4 days per week at a distance of 50 miles each way.
When I first started caring for Mum I found it difficult enough at a distance of a couple of miles ! How you cope with a 100 mile round trip each time I can't imagine !

Would the Crossroads carers take in milk and goodies if you were to leave them the money ? Mum might think it strange to have deliveries made that she hadn't ordered and might worry that she was supposed to be paying them - I doubt that she would understand that you had arranged it.
Pam, of course you can't go on like this, you will make yourself ill if you carry on doing care like that. My mum was only 6 miles away and I found that difficult enough. Has your mum had a recent needs assessment from Social Services? If Crossroads are going in 5 days a week, she must have fairly substantial needs already. Shopping is a difficult area for Social Services funding. After I became ill, mum finally accepted carers from SSD, but had to employ someone else to do her shopping. This works well, but my mum is physically frail, not mentally. Work out how much all your travelling is costing at 40p per mile, then privately funded care doesn't seem quite so expensive. Have a word with Crossroads first, they are bound to have come up against this before, and may have a ready made solution. If mum's condition seems to be deteriorating, perhaps this would also be a good time to ask them how much longer they think she will be able to cope in her own home. Also consider mum's financial situation. Is she receiving Attendance Allowance? If she is mentally frail, she might be exempt from Council Tax. Money saved could be used for additional care.
thank you for your replies.

the problem so far has been that no matter how many people go in to see her in a day, all she wanted was me,me, me.

Now i think we have reached a stage when she really does not remember when i last was there, or what we did, etc. she can be very nasty to me, but thats par for the course i think.
That is why i am thinking, do i really need to go to her so much. as i said crossroads go into her 5 days per week, and i am not talking about me not going at all, just not as much.
Thinking about it overnight, i think i will just load her fridge up with milk when i do go and ask crossroads to keep an eye on it and if necessary take her some.

Yes, bowlingbun she does get all the benefits she is entitled to. and yes she has been assessed by s.s. twice in fact. they say that she is quite ok living on her own. In fact last time they came she sat and spoke to my mum who was in part, away with the fairies at the time. she left the flat and bumped into the lady who lives next door to mum. this lady spoke to social worker and said she felt mum should be cared for in a residential home. to be fair, this neighbour (herself in her 80s) has to put up with a lot from mum. her wanderings and talking rubbish etc. etc. the social worker then said to her that she had been sitting with mum and had a perfectly good conversation with her. Well i was present and i would not have interpreted it in that way. the s.w. admitted to me that because mum sees to her own personal care, to get help for her is more difficult, but in my opinion that should not be the only criteria.
She falls a lot, and we have an appt. for the falls clinic in september. She has a link line, but mostly does not wear it and does not remember how to use it. She wears a hearing aid, but loses it on a daily basis and cannot put it in herself. a few people have said to me that mum is so much worse without her hearing aid, but i wish they would tell me how to solve the problem of a. finding it, it could be just anywhere in her flat. and b. putting it in.
Yes suzie i think she would be far far better off in some sort of residential place. she would have company, she would at least have the opportunity to eat a hot meal, and she would be cared for 24/7. She could not be self funding so its all down to s.s. also she is very much against that heself.
there was a message on my answerphone last week from social worker saying that they are sending in an enablement team for 6 weeks, so they can see how mum is coping.
I think this is because i have been going on so much about mum not eating and has lost 1/2 stone in 3 weeks. I have decided i will keep clear of that and let them get on with it and see what they come up with. Me being involved will make no difference, and also i don't think i have the strength at the moment.

I am desperately trying to sell our property so that i can move back closer to her, without any luck for the past 8 mths. it is all my fault as i thought that now i am almost 70 i could do what i want and live where i want, but for lots of reasons, not just my mum, it has not worked out.

oh dear.
Oh Pam, I just wanted to send a huge hug. There are times when I think SS has lost the plot entirely. Their whole focus is on saving money, not caring for the individual or of course the carer who is doing all the work.

Your mum always sounds like mine; yes, will not remember where the hearing aid is nor how to put it in, wears care line but does not push it when she falls etc.

On the practical side, what happens on the days you are not there? Is mum any worse on those days? If she can't remember when you are visiting anyway, could you at least go every other day or even every three days (I do this but of course am living much closer). Could the supermarket deliveries be timed for the Crossroads visit so that they could put the shopping away? Maybe mum could "help". The enablement team is a good start - be very careful not to help her too much during that time. They need to see her at her worst. I know that is very difficult but it is the only way of getting any help. Take this six weeks as a start of wearning yourself and mum off too frequent visits.

Will be thinking of you, Anne x
i have made a decision.

i have to go to the area where mums lives twice a week to visit my disabled daughter. i am going to combine the two and visit mum after i have spent time with my daughter. this means i will only travel up twice a week (apart from perhaps social occasions when i get together with friends).
As i said she does not now remember when i was last there and she has somebody going in every day, plus when we go.

Its so sad, i know i am not the only one in this situation. i had a text from the crossroads lady today telling me how all my mum talked about is killing herself. nothing i can do will lift her mood.

You can see how stupid i was to think that this move to the coast would work, but i think i had some sort of old age breakdown, and after caring for 47 yrs (daughter) i just wanted to get away from caring and have made things a lot worse.
I wonder how many members have read this and recognised themselves in it. By that I mean, although our situations all differ, one of the things we have in common is we put ourselves last.

You were in a unsustainable situation Pam, and I am so pleased to see you are cutting down. At some point your own health and well being has to be put 1st. Plus if you became ill, neither your M or your mam, would receive any visits at all.

x x
You need rest too, you can't carry on at this level. Have you got support? Sounds like you need it, and if you haven't you need to speak to someone. As Rosemary says, we do tend to put our needs on hold. At the moment I have got the form that may mean a reduction in our council tax, 25% but that's because I work, reading it your mum may well be exempt like Bowlingbun says, worth a try.
Take care x
yes thank you treez, mum does receive all her benefits, and because of that money is not a huge issue.
we found her flat on the floor when we went yesterday. said she had been there for hours, but who knows really. she did not have her link line on, and although the phone being on a coffee table was within her reach she had not thought to pick it up. the ambulance took her to hospital,where they examined her and said that there was nothing physically wrong with her, but as she is a lady of 98 with dementia they were not prepared to send her home to live on her own and would involve social services. i could have given the doctor a big cuddle, but managed to hold myself together. she was showing all the signs of dementia at the hospital.
I phoned social worker this morning who said she thought mum should be in a residential home. now she has never ever said that to me before, always maintaining that mum was quite able to care for herself at home. she said the problem was not the money, but the legal fact that she felt if she said to mum,'would you like to live in a care home', she would say no, then there was nothing s.s. could do. She is judging this on mums refusal to go to day care. i said surely mum is beyond the mental capacity to say where she would like to live. she does not recognise her home as her home. She is always waiting for me to come and take her home. However, the social worker said, does she recognise you and i had to say yes. She is going to see mum at the hospital tomorrow.
I have the keys to mums flat and her clothes, i feel like refusing to allow entry to the flat if they say she has to come home. i am sure that i will be in trouble if i do that tho.

I have not been to the hospital to visit today. i just needed to rest today. i phoned my sister in n.z. and she said, but surely you will phone the hospital to see how she is, and i said to her no, you can do that and i gave her the telephone number. The hospital of course have my home number. I know it will be very stressful for my mum and myself if i visit.
I am just burnt out at the moment and i know my mum is being cared for and that is a good feeling. I just need a couple of days to get myself together. i am sure you all know what i
am talking about.
Thankyou so much for your comments rosemary, you are always there for me, i know.
Pam, has mum had a formal mental capacity assessment? M. had one done by someone from the "head office" of Social Services, it was very accurate. I'd told the local office again and again that M. wasn't as capable in certain areas as they claimed, and the MCA agreed with me. It made everything so much easier, as then they had to listen to what the assessor said, rather than Mrs.X wants this, Mrs. X says this. If there is any doubt about mum's mental capacity they MUST do a proper assessment, to determine whether of not she counts as a "vulnerable adult". They can't force entry to mum's home, if you don't let them in. However hard it is, stay away and tell them. I'm afraid it's "Call my Bluff". Personally, I'm absolutely appalled at the way this sort of thing seems to be increasingly common. 40 years ago, there were proper managed discharges, with weekly case conferences between all those involved, doctors, OT, physio, Social Services. It was so much better then.