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Can't cope with my mum after her stroke - Carers UK Forum

Can't cope with my mum after her stroke

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My mother had a stroke earlier this year. She spent 3/4 months in hospital then was discharged. Carers come in twice a day to help her wash and dress but I do all meals, laundry and housework. I have an 11 month old son who needs constant supervision and it's taking its toll on me. She's constantly unreasonable and nasty. She went for me yesterday and I called the social worker and left a message because I cannot do this for the rest of our lives. It's not fair on anyone.

I know a stroke can make personality changes but I honestly believe she's always had this nasty side. She just sits in her wheelchair all day, isn't interested in trying physio. I can't take her out and about because my sons too heavy to carry in a sling while I push the wheelchair.

She keeps saying she wishes she had died and telling me to leave and never come back. As she's 57 she won't have free carers for long and we're unsure what happens after that. I think she needs a care home but she has no income and huge debts.

Right now she's not speaking to me, I'm still making her food ect but I think feeling like I shouldn't bother seeing as she says I never feed her or look after her.
Marjorie - hi - may I suggest first of all you repost in the New Members section at the top of the list, as you will get far more 'traffic' there - The mods may do it for you anyway!

Secondly, no, you do NOT have to care for your mum any more! It doesn't matter how young she is, if she can't manage on her own (and she clearly can't), and if you refuse to care for her (as is your ENTIRE LEGAL RIGHT- No one can FORCE you to care for her!)(what if you didn't exist, or lived in Australia etc?!), then the NHS/SS have to step in. They can either bring care-workers in, or, more likely take her into residential care.

I would back off completely if I were you. She sounds, at the least, as a 'difficult' person, and the fact she's run up such debts is a clear sign of that for a start! Has she always been nasty to you, or has it only come on since her stroke? Whichever, it is even more reason for you not to put up with her.

Sadly, if your read around on this forum, you will come across many parents in need of care but who are entirely unappreciative and thankless about what their long-suffering children do for them. They are not worthy of their children's devotion and work.

Don't be one of them! Your priority is your son, and that's paramount.

Why not phone her GP today, tell them you are withdrawing all care from her, you won't be visiting any more, and telling the GP to activate the Social Services (and phone her SW as well!) (and email everything too, so they have it in writing), and they will have to 'take over'.

Don't be pressured or nagged or bullied into doing any more for her, either by her, or the NHS/SS. Like I say, you have no legal obligation to care for her, but as we know, cashstrapped NHS/SS are keen to 'persuade' family to take on the caring load! Just say 'NO, I can't and won't do it - I have a baby, and my own life, and she's ungrateful and difficult anyway.'

All the very best to you, and stay resolute! Cheers, Jenny
Welcome to the forum. First, sort out your priorities, son comes first, he deserves a happy mum and a happy childhood.
Can you just clarify where you live. Together, or separately. Does mum own her house? If she has no money, and needs carers, then she should have Social Services do a Needs Assessment so they can provide long term carers. You should also ask SS for a Carers Assessment, so you can tell them very clearly you WILL NOT care for mum any more. (Actually, this should all have been sorted out before mum was discharged from hospital).
With this information, it will be easier to suggest a way forward.
Thank you for all the advice. I've reposted in new members section. I've left a message for the social worker as she only works Monday - Wednesday. Nothing was well organised before she came home and there was no communication from my mum or the hospital. I was told at 8pm on Thursday night that she'd be dropped off the next day at 1pm. She can't get upstairs to the bathroom so can't shower or bathe. She wants to eat chocolate constantly and I've told her no because she'll gain more weight and it will be even harder to attempt taking her anywhere.
When was mum actually discharged? I would suggest you contact the hospital PALS department and ask why none of the proper discharge procedures were followed, especially an NHS Continuing Healthcare Checklist Assessment which should have involved you. Mum's needs should have been assessed, an Occupational Therapist should have visited mum's house, with mum, to see what aids she needed, those aids should have been supplied and fitted before discharge, and carers arranged to meet all mum's needs, free, for a few weeks of "reablement". Ask them to contact SSD with full details of mum to arrange the Needs Assessment as a matter of urgency.
It was a month ago she was discharged. They needed the bed. She had a home visit and managed to get upstairs but coming back down she stumbled and tore her shoulder so now she can't use the arm much. The carers aren't allowed to help her up stairs and she wouldn't manage it alone. The equipment we receive was rails at front door (by mistake but they've became useful) and gate. A bath board for showering that she can't use and a comode for her. She can't reach anything in the kitchen while in her wheelchair.
She should not have been discharged until the proper procedures had been followed, regardless of them needing the bed. Definitely complain to the hospital about the failure to follow proper procedures. If the carers aren't allowed to help her up the stairs, that amounts to an unsafe discharge. Did they think she would grow wings and fly up by herself?!!!
To be honest I don't think complaining will do anything, they said she was medically fit to leave and no medical reason to stay in. A couple of her friends are going to take her to their house for a bath and I reckon they'll see how difficult she is, she won't be able to get in and out but I'll just leave them to it.
It's not a question of whether she was medically fit to leave, but whether she was safely discharged, which is the hospital's duty, or she will finish up in hospital again sooner than they want. You must complain. Of course the clock can't be wound bac, but there should be rapid assistance from social services to sort out how she can live.
There are detailed procedures which must be followed. Only by complaining will anything improve - they should get in touch with Social Services immediately, apologise to you, and then see what went wrong so it is never repeated again. Remember, your mum is very likely to need hospital services again, so sort it out now, ready for then. It only needs a quick phone call or email to the hospital, either the CEO, or PALS, Patient Liason.