[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/phpbb/session.php on line 585: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/phpbb/session.php on line 641: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
Doubts About Care Home - Carers UK Forum

Doubts About Care Home

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
It is nearly three weeks since my Mum was admitted to a nursing home on a fast track CHC from hospital. The doctor who discharged her believed that she is at end of life although they are unable to say exactly how much time she has. She is physically very frail weighing a little over 4 stone and it is generally accepted she has dementia although we have not had a formal diagnosis.

Mum and I have always lived together and I have been caring for her for several years with her needs increasing over time. It was very hard to admit I could not cope with caring for her any more and relinquish that caring role. I have felt very guilty letting her go to a care home. Friends and family have told me that I did as much and more as could have been expected of me ,but I still feel I have let her down.

I go to see her every day and I’m accustomed to her fluctuating moods. I am also used to her suffering with delirium. For instance today she was convinced the people in the care home wanted to harm her and she was not safe.

On my way out I spoke to a couple of the nurses in charge of Mum’s care. One of them said to me that Mum had been distressed for the majority of the day. They also mentioned that she had used offensive words to some of the care assistants earlier in the day although they did not specify what the words were. One of the nurses said to me that this was not the lady that they knew - a comment I found rather hard to take given Mum has been there such a short time and taking her condition into account. The nurse acted as if she was disappointed in the way that Mum had behaved. This is a nursing home which supposedly specialises in dementia. I also found it hard to stop myself saying that Mum is also not the person that I once knew and that I know her far better than anyone there.

I am really questioning whether the home is the best place for her after all and if I should say I want her back home.
Hi Claire,

Firstly, you are not a former carer, you are still very much caring for your Mum. You are visiting her and advocating for her and overseeing her care. Please don’t feel guilty.

If she is distressed a lot of the time, then it’s worth requesting the GP visits her as they can probably give her something to help her feel less anxious.

I wonder if the nurse mistook you for someone else’s relative, since your Mum has only been in the nursing home since she left hospital.

Apart from this thoughtless comment, is the care your Mum is receiving good?

Try and use your visits to have quality time with your Mum, perhaps listening to her favourite music, telling her memories of good times you shared, giving her a hand massage if she’ll tolerate it etc

(((Hugs)))

Melly1
Hi Clare
This is a distressing time for you which I fully understand.
My lovely late husband was at times very agitated with care staff and nurses in the nursing home. He was a man who never swore at ladies, or in general, ( I suspect having a pint with mates and banter may have been different!) He was agitated when staff didn't explain what they were going to do, even if just to dress him. He felt threatened. I accepted that I and my family would be care managers, and would remind staff to explain, that for them it would be easier and quicker. If they told me he had been aggressive I would ask why! Then would remind them he had dementia and other health issues and their training should involve the understanding of that! I stopped apologies because I felt they had shown impatience with him. He was never horrid to the domestic staff, because they weren't involved in his personal care.
I do understand that it must be awful when swore at etc must be wearing when trying to help and pay isn't at its premium. That is not the residents fault, and they deserve respect.
Hi Claire,

You did what you can, you don't have to be guilty and your doubts were legit. It is normal to feel doubt if it will be good for them because you care and your care is enough. If you are still unsure you can contact the owner or probably hear some reviews from other patients' carers.
Thank you all for your kind replies.

Melly1 - yes I think she is getting good care otherwise and she was discharged with various meds to be given when needed, one of which is Haloperidol. I know she could be equally agitated if she was at home as it's not really her location but her state of mind. It's just so hard to see her going through it and not being there for her all the time.

Pet66 - so sorry for your loss and yes I think that's part of it for Mum too, feeling threatened. Sometimes she's just fed up having to live to someone else's timetable. Until the last few months she was an independent woman and she when she remembers her limitations now she gets upset. I would have thought the nurses would appreciate that. That's a good tip about getting them to tell me if she's been like that so I can ask her why.

Carmen_2111 - the home has a good reputation and I've had a couple of independent people say the staff are great. Maybe yesterday had just been a bad day all round.

I'll take a box of biscuits in today as a thank you and have another chat with the nurse.

Thank you all, again.
Hi Claire,

The biscuits sound a good idea and Pet's advice re asking how she has been and if they say she has been upset, asking why they think that was.

It might also help if the home knew what she was like before she became so poorly, some pictures of her when she was still active, photos of her when she was younger, any background information e.g. her career, where she has travelled to, her hobbies and so on - information to help them relate to her more and identify with her more.

Melly1
Melly, I forgot about that ( how could I!)
I gave a list of hubbys interests, his career and work he had done. Plenty for staff to interact with him.
Thanks again both.

I took some photos of Mum in the other day with her children and grandchildren. We, her children, were really her life and she did a fantastic job of bringing us up while dad was off having affairs and going on business trips.

I had a call at work today because they were trying to give Mum her Covid booster and she went hysterical. I assured her she was safe and stayed on the phone while they gave her the injection.

She was calm when I visited this evening and on the way out I chatted with the nurse who had called earlier and we chatted through some of Mum's younger life, famiky. The nurse said to me it's the emotional support they are finding hard to give her or rather for her to accept. I said I had been wondering if I should bring her home and she said to me while she would never say don't that it would be very difficult. I'm aware of that, of course, as it had been tough before her last hospital admission.

So at the moment I'm reassured they are doing their best for her, but still wavering on whether I made the right decision on sending her there.

No easy decisions at a time like this.
Claire
That is such a natural reaction. I often thought that I was going to arrange to get my husband home. The guilt monster used to jump on me. Actually I had no choice, his consultant strongly advised that hubby being at home would neither be safe for him or me. It can take a long time for residents to settle. I made friends with 4 visitors in the home and all 4 from time to time said they felt the need to take loved ones home. You have to consider how you would really cope. Would it be fair on either of you. It's very hard. Heart and head balance
Hi Pet

It's such a help talking to you and others here who have been through similar experiences.

Truly I know Mum is safer there than at home with a patchwork of care while I'm out, but as you say the guilt monster is always ready to jump on you.

I was surprised but heartened today when I asked about Mum being allowed outside of the home and they said it's fine. I thought Covid would have put a stop to that but they have measures in place to allow it. So I could have her back home for a visit for a few hours at the weekend. I did ask if it might cause her upset having to go back after visiting but they said it just needs to be handled right.

So aa long as they feel she's up to it at least I can give her a change of scene now and then.