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should i move to care for my grandparents? - Carers UK Forum

should i move to care for my grandparents?

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hi, i live in birmingham and im a single mother to 3 boys. im 28 years old. my grandparents live quite a distance away, say 100 miles. one of them is very unwell, and the other could really do with being supported in caring for the other and soon will both probably need caring for. now my question is should move to care for them as they have no one else to care or them? how will i know when they most definatley do need care and would i be ab;e to do this looking after mt three children too? i think they are getting on quite well at the moment and they are both very proud and NEVER ask for help. i have only just realised how difficult life must be for them. if i move i will have no one around me, but i am young and active and quite healthy, but they also have no one else, just each other. what do i do? t is my duty as a muslim to take care for my elders. please please help x
Dear Elle,
As a single mum, I think your first duty is to give your children a secure upbringing. If you are all happy living where you are, then moving, with all the problems that involves, new home, new schools etc. etc. will be very unsettling. I understand that travelling is difficult, especially with the children, but there is still a lot you can do for them to make life easier. Have you spoken to your grandparents about your concerns? If you can work out with them what they are finding most difficult, you can then try and work out how you can help them most. For example, are they happy with where they live, or do they need to move to ground floor accommodation? Are there any particular health problems, apart from getting older? Would any aids or adaptations help them? Have they had a benefits check recently? Do they struggle with shopping? Make a list of what you think the problems are, I find that by just writing problems down, and putting them in order is really helpful. I am sure that they appreciate having such a caring grand daughter.
Hello Elle Image Good to hear from you.

As Bowlingbun has said, my first instinct is to say that your own children should be your priority right now. But cultures do vary in this respect somewhat and I admire your intentions.

I'm not too sure just how well your grandparents are coping right now. But its clear that you have concerns about their future and wish to do what you can. It's a pity there is no family other than you. Are your grandparents involved with any religious groups at all ? Or are they very isolated socially ? If they have some kind of support network, it would be good to try and liaise with those concerned to try and see what can be done to offer more support, in a way that is acceptable.

If one or more is struggling with personal care tasks like washing and dressing, then you could usefully approach Social Services where they live. They would visit and carry out an assessment and hopefully offer to provide some help with personal care. But I understand that your grandparents might find this hard to accept.

Its very hard to know what more to do in your situation. I don't honestly think that moving in is a good solution, but the choice is always yours of course. It might be good for you to join a carers group where you live. That would be supportive and beneficial to you I feel. Find local groups at http://www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice ... e-you-live

So that would be my plan. Find support locally for you, and see what support and social networks exist already for your grandparents and try to give those a boost somehow. And consider Social Services if appropriate. But getting old is something that has to be accepted to some extent and there is not always a simple solution. Just ensure they know you love and care, even at a distance. Keeping in touch means more than many of us imagine.

Good to have you with us, Elle. Plenty of helpful and kind folk here Image

I wish you well,

Thank you both very much for replying and your warm welcomes. I thnk you are both right, my children do come first, i just thought i could maybe manage all o it. but thank you again, i will definatley be looking into what ii can do from a distance and will definatley be keeping intouch. i think i alrteady knew what the answer was, i just wanted to hear it. thank you again.
Hi Elle and welcome Image
Just wanted to say that I agree with the advice you've already been given.
I'm widowed, and although my son and his partner are very good to me, I do miss having my husband to discuss things with. Elderly people tend to "invent" jobs for other people, as soon as you do one they find another one, it's easy to end up like a hamster in a wheel. It's important to be firm and brave and say when you simply can't do something. It took counselling for me before I managed to start doing this. Be realistic about what you can and cannot do. The children have a right to a happy childhood too. Take care.
I have faced a similar concern re my parents and their need for more support. We have found the best solution in a type of sheltered flat complex that has on site 24 hour care available (at a reasonable cost) which can be bought in hourly segments. also on site is a cafe where hot meals can be bought , a hairdressers and small grocery shop. There is communal activities and lots of support which can be upped as their needs increase. your grandparents local social services should be able to tell you if such a scheme exists near to them . My dad had resisted the idea for over 3 years but when he had a recent bad episode and was unwell himself he realised they needed to be somewhere there is more hands on support available at very short notice. Its early days but i think its going to be the best for all concerned.