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Care home worries - can anyone understand? - Page 2 - Carers UK Forum

Care home worries - can anyone understand?

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
Maybe it's time to make a list of all the things you know she is struggling with. You've already mentioned
Climbing stairs
Carrying things

Have you thought of asking her how much longer she thinks she will be able to carry on in the current place?

Does she remember how old YOU are now (my mum forgot when I reached 60!)
How would "I'd like to see you settled with a bit more help as I'm afraid of you falling and breaking something" be received?
Hi Starfish
Has Mum actually visited any homes? Could it be she's just afraid of the unknown?
Turns out my Mum had been visiting homes she thought would suit (an ex-teacher's one in particular). She didn't like them for various reasons. When she decide to move near my big bro she visited all 3 Homes in the town and didnt like 2 of them (too small or wrong location) so agreed to the 3rd, not perfect but sensible.

Could you use a variation of this and take her to a couple of homes you know she won't agree to, but then take her to the one you know will suit. You may well find she decides to give it a try. (Subtle huh? ;) )

On that note too, some homes offer taster days or stays

Also, it need not be the final move. Could you keep her flat on for a while? We rented Mums home out, initially with the idea she could go back to it. Now she takes comfort knowing it is there but has no desire to return and live alone again.

I'm not saying our situation is the only way, but just to show there are variations.

On the other hand, I would suggest that it IS the final move! That you choose a home that has sections for social care nursing care and dementia care, in different areas. Then as mum's needs increase, they can all be dealt with, especially the final days. We have many different views on the forum, there are seldom right or wrong, just different. You can ignore them all, or choose the one that seems best for you and mum. By the time you have visited a few, you will know instinctively if mum would be comfortable there.
I've visited quite a few homes in the area and taken mum to one or two. She's been accepted by one that seems to tick all the boxes: a mile to my house, does nursing care if needed, run by a social housing group so probably won't go bust, and mum liked the room she saw.

BUT....mum is muddled about the premise of the home. She seems to think I'm moving her to a flat similar to her own, and she is rather miserable at the prospect of not having a say in getting her own meals.

There is a six-week trial period but I'm banking on the hope that she will actually forget she's been moved and start to enjoy it, just as she 'forgot' that she chose the flat she's in now (she believes we moved her there from some hospital - never happened).

I find it so hard to deal with her fear. I'm quite practical and analytical myself and not brilliant at empathy - see my original rather panicky post!
Just keep saying "Trust me" or something reassuring, like a stuck record player. A few phrases repeated often. After all, it IS a very scary prospect, knowing you won't leave until you die.
I haven't posted for some time though I keep reading the forum.

So, an update on mum. She has been in the care home for two months. The staff are lovely and think she's a sweetie as she is so polite. I visit most days and chat to them and know several of them by name. They keep mum beautifully clean and fed. (There are drawbacks. They've lost every single pair of the expensive cloth pants I bought and carefully tagged with her name, and there is not as much continuity as I would like, but these are minor inconveniences.)

Mum, on the other hand, hates it with a passion. She's still bored and lonely. She thought she was moving into another sheltered flat and cannot understand why there is no kitchen. She can't find the shared pantry where there is a kettle and microwave. She won't join in with the organised activities. She hates the food, but her chief complaint is that there is no one worth talking to. When I went for a couple of days' holiday she rang both days to find out if I was back yet, and when was I coming to see her? Her short term memory is almost non-existent and she often thinks I'm her deceased sister. I visited one morning and the same evening she rang to say she hadn't seen anyone all day, and if I "ever felt like coming round" she would like to see me. Another day she rang to ask if I would make her a cup of tea. Come to think of it, she'd really like me to move in with her!

I had serious doubts at first, even considering moving her somewhere else, but I reckon the problem will follow her wherever she goes. I just wish I didn't feel so bad that I can't make her happy.
Hi Starfish
Thanks for the update. As we said to your earlier posts you will feel guilty when you should change that word to 'sad'. You say Mum hates the Home with a passion but in the same paragraph say she's doesn't recognises you. Trust me if she really hated it she would let you know in many other ways and behaviours. It sounds like she is just every confused most of the time, and also for her time no longer has meaning

Think with these behaviours and calls how much MORE guilty you'd feel if she was still in the flat and calling more and needing someone (I,e you) very minute. You'd feel so much worse.

As it is all you are guilty of is getting her somewhere where she is a safe as possible, fed and clean and where you can visit and give her quality time without the drudgery jobs.

Ask the staff too if she really is refusing all the activities. My Mum used to say she was bored and there was nothing to do when one day she was in a photo on the front page of the newspaper because they'd all gone on a trip to the fish and chip shop! When we showed her she said, oh yes I remembr now but i still didnt like it! What your Mum is saying and thinking is not actually what is happening. Mentally she is stuck in a groove, even though her life around her has moved on. Treat her comments as a broken record that repeats.

Try too not visiting so regularly. You'll get the same moans and groans whether you go twice a day or twice a week.
Sadly, and to try to put things in perspective, we had the calls from Mum saying when is someone going to visit, often within an hour of someone leaving. Now we don't get calls as she's forgotten how to use the phone. But I don't feel guilty as we know we and she couldn't have coped at home. One day we'd have found her fallen on the floor or burned to death or knocked over wandering outside. We can't stop her ageing but we know she's looked after 24/7

We do understand
Hi Starfish,
Mum's home sounds lovely, it's a huge relief to know she is clean and tidy at all times.

Unfortunately nowhere is perfect, and mum's memory is clearly very poor. Feel proud that you looked after her for so long, and have found such a lovely place.
Thankyou so much for the continuing encouragement. It is quite a lonely place to be when all my friends' parents have passed away already - sometimes I feel they're thinking "what does she have to moan about? I'd give anything to still have mum/dad with me", and I know I'll feel that way when mum is gone.

Mrs A you always take a lot of time to reply and I do appreciate being able to compare notes. I love the fish and chip story.

I'm on a course this week, 200 miles from home, nevertheless mum rang last night to see if I could come and unscrew her hot water bottle.

When I checked back this morning she said the paper girl had done it for her......
Mine called last night to say she couldn't find her way back to her room.....the phone she calls from is in her room :roll:

Btw, my Mum is definitely more muddled late afternoon/ evening... called sundowning I believe

Oh, and she think the carers are so lovely to give up their holidays to look after her :-??? ... further investigation revealed she thinks all the foreign ones are here on holiday because "oh no my dear, they couldn't live here, they are not English" :whistle: