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CARENOTES | Past Carenotes | Let's Talk

Carenotes

Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 09/11/12

I am caring for my mother. I am doing it alone. It has been so hard. She was always a difficult, controlling, demanding person. I have been told to force her into assisted living by friends. She actually could afford assistance, but refuses to pay someone else. She alienates medical help with the constant criticizing. I am at the end of my rope. Tried a caregiver support group and no one in it was a caregiver! It is so frustrating and some days I just feel like I can't go on. I have tried calling the church. I have contacted the Department of Aging; got four hours of respite every three months. There are no friends or relatives to help out. 

Laura

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Name: Anne
Location: Asheville
Date: 09/18/2012
Time: 09:29 AM

Comments

My mother has lived with me for the past 15 years. She has been difficult in the past and is now completely dependent on me. I have a few suggestions for you. I insisted that my mother start taking antidepressants. the change came slowly but it helped alot. I started taking a yoga class to get out of the house two hours a week. This is my time and if you can leave her for any amount of time find something you enjoy and get out. A class, shopping or a brisk walk in the park are some of the other things I do. I hired a lady 3 days a week to come in and sit with my mother for 4 hours a day. My mother pays for it and when she starts critiziing, I turn it back on her and tell her to ask the caregiver to do what she wants. My mother tends to complain behind the caregivers back. The other thing that has helped is counseling, it is not cheap but I almost put my mother in a nursing home over the demanding and critizing. I went at first and then took my mother. She never even realized what she was doing and the therapist opened her up to alot of negative issuses. Hope this helps.


Name:
Location:
Date: 09/18/2012
Time: 06:30 AM

Comments

Hi Laura, What I'm going to say might sound a little farfetched, but it's true. People who act controlling and demanding are strategically 'acting out' that way to maintain a sense of false control. If you allow yourself to be manipulated this way, that shows she doesn't respect you. The only way to get her to respect her is to stand up to her. It is actually a function of the brain for her to think this way. I am a brain dialog researcher. I specialize in communication between the brain's 4 quadrants. 'Special needs' tyrants that are controlling and demanding are following their nature to get things done. She is focused on efficiency (from her viewpoint) and sees you as a tool to efficiently and conveniently do her bidding. I know that sounds cold and harsh, but she's actually only following neurological promptings in her brain. A bestselling book I use as a text book for my students is called Dealing With People You Can't Stand. I think it's sold 2 million copies internationally now. It is by Dr. Rick Brinkman and Dr. Rick Kirschner. It is easy to read through but takes a while to remember all the material. It also comes in an audio program. I encourage you to especially read the second on the Tank and the Tank Sniper. In those sections, it guides you on ideas about how to talk with controlling demanding people. If you are exhausted, I completely understand it. There is help here and you can find some great ideas in that book. I know how exhausting caregiving can be. My husband and I took care of our son at home for the last few months of his life until his death at age twelve. There is no reason you need to allow her demanding behavior to dictate the terms of your life anymore. There is hope. All you've got to do is use some of the principles in this book. Really, it will make a huge difference when you do. I will be praying for angels to send you strength and peace to carry on. You are loved and appreciated for all you do for your mom. God bless, Susan Fox PS Keep reaching out and taking time out for you. If you are here for you, you and your mom will greatly benefit.


Name: beth
Location: maryland
Date: 09/18/2012
Time: 05:47 AM

Comments

I can totally relate to what you are going through. I am an only child trying to balance a full time demanding job, family, ME and making sure mom is safe. I recently moved her to assisted living, it was the hardest decision I ever had to make in regard to her care. She has been miserable ever since and calls my phone constantly to complain. I don't always answer, but then the guilt comes in...what if it was really important and I did not pick it up. My mom, too, has always been difficult, controlling and demanding. She has gotten worse since my dad passed away. She thinks the world is there to serve her and when it doesn't move fast enough, then look out. Even though her memory is not as sharp, I have no doubt she still realizes how to be manipulative. I am plagued with guilt on a daily basis by her and find that the little bit of free time I have goes to visiting her. I travel 30 minutes every Saturday ( my only day off) to be with her. SInce her move I travel also on Tuesday mornings before work. I was hoping these visits would help her adjust. But I find she takes them for granted. I am feeling exhausted, frustrated and as much as I hate to say it, resentful. So I can definately feel your anguish. I am here if you would like to vent further. good luck.


Name: Ruth
Location: NC
Date: 09/17/2012
Time: 01:49 PM

Comments

Hi Laura, If you were located in NC or your mother was, I might could point you in some good directions. A diagonsis would be helpful to have. None the less, have you spoken with people at the local senoir center? Some hospitals or senior centers have a 'sitters list'. The Alzheimer's Association has a 800 toll free number you can call if that's appropriate.


Name: Cindy James
Location: Daily Living Center, Bethany, Ok
Date: 09/17/2012
Time: 08:07 AM

Comments

If you haven't done so already, get a thorough evaluation from a geriatrician or from a senior diagnostic/evaluation center. These centers are usually inpatient;the evaluation may take up to a week, as they will watch her behaviors and test her for various physical conditions affecting the elderly. Medicare usually pays for this--may be a co-pay, don't know. After she is thoroughly evaluated, and you know what is going on with her, you can make better plans. Make an appointment with your physician and explain to him or her what is going on with your mother. He/she may be able to prescribe medication that will enable you to think more clearly. I am not a fan of Xanax or any other addictive antianxiety medication, but there are many wonderful anti-depressants available. An Adult Day Health can be a godsend for you and your mother. She can stay all day, which will allow you to have some "breathing" space. Many adult day health centers can arrange respite care at a nearby nursing home for 3 or so days so you can get away for a weekend every so often. Look online or in the phone book for "adult day health centers." Now, this being said, you say your mother is demanding, unhappy and critical. She will not change at this point and it will probably get worse because she may have dementia or ongoing TIA's. She has controlled people all her life and now she is making sure that you are squarely under her thumb. This is a personality trait that she has used to control people all her life; some of that behavior may be modified with medications. You cannot reason with someone who has dementia. You may have to send her to a Daily Living Center until she gets used to attending. If she absolutely refuses to go, don't back down. A nursing home may be the best thing for you, although it should always be the last resort. Please search for another caregiver support group. There are many groups who are comprised of caregivers who are full of wisdom from dealing with this problem for years and may have suggestions for you. Call the Alzheimer's Association nearest you to find meeting dates, times and places. I guarantee that these groups can make your burden lighter. My heart goes out to you and all caregivers struggling with care of an aging parent. You cannot help anyone else if you are always putting yourself second. It is not selfish to help yourself. A geriatric counselor will listen to you and offer you support and new ideas. Reaching out for solutions is the first step and you should be proud of yourself.


Name: Joseph
Location: Napa, Ca.
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 09:00 PM

Comments

WOW! I understand your situation. I am, for the first time, attempting to care for my Step Grandfather. He has always been self centered,rude and demanding. This Parkinson's disease magnifies these traits 100 times over. What has helped me the most is prayer. I prayed and prayed that members of this site could enlighten me and provide me insight about my situation. The responses to my prior posting was amazing. I was now not alone. If you sometimes feel consumed with frustration? You are not alone. Staying engaged with others whom are in the same boat; such as members of this support site. helps me allot. Care giving for someone is demanding. And, it can render you hopeless at times. At least that's how it is with me at times. I do believe that praying will give me the strength to do what is in the best interest for his well being. As well as mine. I will pray for you. I wish you well and God bless. Joseph...


Name: Judy Bolan
Location: Chardon, OH
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 06:44 PM

Comments

Hi Laura. My sisters and I were in the same situation. At least there were 3 of us. We would take turns staying 24 hours at Mom's house. She wouldn't cooperate in anything, including bathing, etc. and was so difficult and mean and insulting, we would leave there feeling drained of life. We finally found an assisted living home close by and it changed all our lives, including Mom's. She is happier, more active and very cooperative with the people who take care of her. You need to find joy in your own life.


Name: C. Hughes
Location: United States
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 01:31 PM

Comments

Dear Laura, First, I am so very sorry that you are dealing with this. What you are going through with your mother is extremely stressful, as well as mentally, physically and emotionally exhausting. Beyond being our parents, our mothers and fathers are people with personalities. Some parents have personalities that make it VERY difficult for the adult daughter or adult son to help care for them. My husband and I have dealt with his mother for the last 12 years while she has had numerous health problems, most recently every day for two months due to both of his parents having health problems. She is also difficult, controlling, demanding,emotionally abusive, argumentative, unappreciative and manipulates with guilt. She argued about any type of in home assistance for herself or her husband. Any time a doctor set up home care, she ran them off. She sent back the life alert type bracelets we ordered because both of them had fallen in their home. Their doctors had been telling her for the last two years she needed in home help with her husband's health problems and she refused to arrange the help. So my suggestions come from personal experience. You did not mention what health problems your mother has that require assistance. If she is of sound mind, she needs to take responsibility for herself and that does not mean that she does that by demanding that you take care of her. If you are financially able to pay for counseling for yourself, I urge you to do so to learn how to deal with your mother's personality. If not, I hope you have a good friend who is a good listener and whose advice you respect. Your mother is who she is and at this point in her life she is not going to change and you will end up in the hospital if you continue what you are doing now. Accept that in her eyes nothing you do will be right or make her 'happy'. The thing you can do is to try to make sure she is in a safe environment. You mentioned that she refuses to pay for in home care assistance and alienates other medical help. I suggest you privately set up appointments to meet the director and tour the assisted living facilities in your area. Do not mention this to your mother as she will only argue about you going. Learn what you would need to do to place your mother in a facility. If she continues to refuse in home assistance, then do what is necessary to place her in an assisted living facility. She will be angry,she may try to sabotage the move, she may threaten to stop loving you,but you will know that she is in a safe environment where her daily needs are being met. Do not feel guilty about making this decision and don't listen to those who try to make you feel guilty. Many people have only had to deal with loving, caring mothers who would never put their adult child in the position your mother is holding you hostage in. The stress of what you are doing will begin to affect your health, if it hasn't already. Whether your mother ever gives you permission to take care of you, you must take care of yourself. I wish for you the strength to get through what lies ahead. Please take care of yourself.


Name:
Location:
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 01:05 PM

Comments

When parents "Refuse" help, and You know they need help other than what you can provide, Then, They do not get the Choice to refuse! Sorry, sounds cruel and mean. Been there, done that. Ruins your life, makes you the caregiver ill. IF she has money for assisted living or a live-in paid caregiver, that is what needs to happen. Just my opinion. Good luck.


Name: L. Germanetti
Location: Palm City, FL
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 12:44 PM

Comments

Laura, even if you had many siblings, you might still feel like you were all alone in caring for your mom. I've been in your shoes. I tried to do it all and made myself sick. I would suggest asking her doctor to put her on an antidepressant. You didn't say her age or diagnosis though. Then I would start researching ALF's to find the best place for her. Then you would be able to visit with her without resentment. It will be an adjustment for both of you, but if you find the right place, she will get good care and you both win. I wish I could tell you this is the perfect solution, but it is a difficult decision. If you continue alone, you will be sick and then who will care for her? You are now the parent and maybe realizing that will make it easier for you to make a decision. I hope this helps.


Name: Dave
Location: California
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 11:23 AM

Comments

I've had first hand experience with this sort of situation several times....but each one is different. Without insight as to your mother's mental and physical condition and her ability to thrive without help, we're shooting in the dark when offering advice. This being said, The Caregiver's Bill of Rights http://www.caregiver.com/articles/caregiver/caregiver_bill_of_rights.htm is a good place to start reorienting your own thinking, and if your mother is mentally with it you should consider giving her a copy and using it as a catalyst to talk about your needs as well as hers. If your mother is simply not "with it" and is not safe without someone else in the house, then you need to take steps to establish conservatorship and either hire the help you need at home or put her in a facility if she's creating too much stress at home for you. You have to take care of you, as well your mother, or you will be no use to either one of you. One other point to be made is the simple reality that sooner or later there will be what I call a "defining moment"....a sudden medical change, a fall or transportation incident if she is still driving, a "getting lost' incident involving the police, etc....which will dictate that you or someone else be more in control of the situation whether Mom likes it or not.


Name: GAIL
Location: MIDWEST
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 11:04 AM

Comments

HELLO LAURA; I AM IN THE SAME BOAT HERE. THE SUPPORT GROUPS DID NOTHING FOR ME. JUST A WHINING SESSION, SORRY TO SAY. GET TO KNOW YOUR NEIGHBORS. THEY ARE CLOSE, AND PEOPLE ARE KINDER THAN YOU MIGHT THINK. IN A PINCH, THEY ARE RIGHT THERE, AT LEAST. KEEP IN TOUCH WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND THE OUTSIDE WORLD AS BEST YOU CAN, BY PHONE OR EMAIL. GO FOR ANY RESPITE TIME YOU CAN IF ANYONE OFFERS TO HELP. EVEN AN HOUR. GET YOUR MOTHER'S PERMISSION TO BECOME THE POWER OF ATTY FOR BOTH HEALTH AND PROPERTY, SO YOU CAN HIRE AGENCY HELP IF YOU CAN FIND ONE YOU LIKE. CENTER YOURSELF EVERY DAY SOMEHOW. SIT OUTSIDE OR AWAY FROM YOUR MOTHER FOR AWHILE. CALM DOWN. KEEP YOURSELF FOCUSED AND START EVERY DAY NEW. IT'S A LONG DISTANCE RACE. PACE YOURSELF THE BEST YOU CAN. BEST OF LUCK.


Name:
Location:
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 10:50 AM

Comments

Linda, THere is an online support group canned Family Caregiver Alliance. Their URL is www.caregiver.org. I have bewen a member of this group for over five years and it is made up of caregivers and former caregivers. I highly recommend it.


Name: Jane
Location: New Port Richey, FL
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 09:09 AM

Comments

Hey Laura -- There should be many more responses than this -- what happened to them?


Name: Leslie
Location: Medford, Oregon
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 07:52 AM

Comments

Dear Laura, When I read your Carenote I couldn't believe how your situation has paralled mine so first up, you are not alone. Like you I got a few hrs. of respite time/month and I savored every moment of my time away. Immerse yourself in something that really interests you -- a good meal, art, shopping so that when you return you have truly "been away." At my church I helped to develop a visitation team; I visit others in homes while others visit my mother. By giving to others, my mother and I have received-- quite therapeutic. Lastly the long-held anger I've had towards my mother is diffusing albeit slowly because frankly I'm tired of being angry and of course her dementia has reshaped our historically negative relationship. Most of all don't lose yourself in this process. Draw your boundary and stay in it. Ha, easier said than done! Leslie


Name: Pat
Location: Minnesota
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 05:32 AM

Comments

I was struck by the word "force" her into a placement. That told me that you too have negative feelings abut putting her into a NH. Think about how many staff there is to do the job you are now doing alone! Being a one person caregiver is going to cause you burn out. A caregiver needs "me" time to replenish your energy and keep you from burnout. You cannot change her attitude but remember, you re now the adult and must make decisions best for both of you, I agree with friends that if you are caring for her with no help, it is time to look into placing her for both your sakes. Pat


Name:
Location:
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 05:30 AM

Comments

Laura, I know how u feel, I cared for my mom for several years until she went to assisted living, best thing I ever done. You can get her there if you are poa and her doctor reccomends it. I still go check on her once a week and they get in a routine and adjust better than I would have ever thought. My mom is not rich by any means and if I have to work 3 jobs to let her stay there I will. My life is soooo much better and don't feel gulity about it, some people will make u feel that way but they are not u and dont know what u have to deal with everyday. Stress of caregiving is one of the worse I know. I can enjoy my family now and went back to work. I had to quit to stay home and take care of 2 parents. So, if she can go to assisted living dont feel guilty and take some time for you..


Name: Janie
Location: New York
Date: 09/16/2012
Time: 05:12 AM

Comments

It's difficult to watch parents, who once took care of us, become helpless and in need of care. My dad is nearly 90, and while he's frustrated at his inability to open a jar or walk without aid, and he's demanding, mom and I feel it's best that he stay at home for now. We also have no relatives or friends to help, and I understand his frustration - most of his friends and Army buddies died, elder family members died, too, and he's lonely. He's comforted by being in his own home, so we take it one day at a time.


Name: tj
Location: wv
Date: 09/14/2012
Time: 10:41 AM

Comments

Speak with your mother's physician, perhaps if someone else discusses getting help she will be more receptive, maybe she needs a screening for dementia or other illness which could lead to the behaviors you describe. It is difficult being a caregiver, look for a support group on line, check with your local area agency on aging to see if they offer any other in home assistance programs. It must be difficult for your mother to accept help, don't take her remarks personally. Make sure you take time for yourself as well-that's really important. good luck.


Name: Jane
Location: New Port Richey, FL
Date: 09/13/2012
Time: 08:43 AM

Comments

I see that a number of other people have responded to you as well, which is excellent. I answered quickly the other day, but I see that a lot of other people have brought up points that I have been thinking about. I see a lot of other people have brought up dementia. I have been educating myself, and it seems that a lot of medical conditions can bring on at least temporary dementia, i.e., a simple urinary tract infection. So even if you do not think she had dementia you can be feeling the effects of temporary dementia -- which can be formidable. I see a lot of people suggest talking to her doctor; that's a great idea, but not all doctors are good or helpful. If that's the case, try to change doctors -- something your mother might resist. Look for a geriatric specialist. I have taken my mother to one visit with someone I just found, and the difference is amazing. HE SPENT 45 MINUTES WITH US!!! Also, if you think your mother might just be in the beginning stages of dementia, beware -- she can go downhill VERY quickly, and you HAVE TO BE READY. I was not -- that's how we got scammed. It does not say what state you are in -- here is a 24/7 helpline phone number for Florida: 1-800-272-3900. Even if you are in another state, they might be able to refer you to an agency local to you. And I cannot stress enough: MAKE SURE YOU HAVE LEGAL AUTHORITY. I know you are concerned about your mother, not money; but that is a mistake I made. My mother had enough apparent clarity for a few days for a psychiatrist to pronounce her competent (but I still thinks he's a quack now that I've seen the report)which allowed the shyster to get her to sign a new POA. The shyster just shows that BS psych report and he's absolved of any legal liability. SO -- if your parents named you as Power of Attorney and Health Care Surrogate and you're not sure how to enforce it, see a lawyer ASAP! If there is nothing in place, see a lawyer to find out how to establish legal authority -- whether it's a POA and HCS or a guardianship -- WITH YOU AS GUARDIAN. Make sure your mother has a DNR if she does not want extraordinary measures taken. Don't let your mother intimidate you with her nasty attitude. I did that to my everlasting regret. She is now in a deeper state of dementia where she is like a lamb -- for the most part. I'm stuck with the 3rd party guardian who gets paid $50/hour for what I did for a few clothes,lunch out or an occasional movie. So -- to capsulate: 1. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE IRREVOCABLE LEGAL AUTHORITY. HAVE HER DECLARED INCOMPETENT IF NECESSARY. DO WHATEVER YOU HAVE TO; IT'S FOR HER PROTECTION. 2. reach out to the doctor; if he/she is not helpful, dump him/her and 3. find a geriatric specialist -- they know how to pull all the various pieces of the puzzle together 4. keep looking for a support system -- or at least an education series 5. DON'T LEAVE YOUR MOTHER -- at least don't go any further than a local motel and SEE HER EVERY DAY -- SEVERAL TIMES A DAY FOR SHORT PERIODS IF THAT IS EASIER! GOOD LUCK AND LET US KNOW HOW THINGS GO!!! All the best, Jane


Name: Dawn Song
Location: Oregon
Date: 09/12/2012
Time: 12:48 PM

Comments

See if you can have the attitude that this situation is no longer tolerable. Of course you love your mother in spite of her irritating (read: maddening!) behavior but you must love yourself first and take care of yourself first. This attitude must happen before any of the things you try (some of the suggestions below might work for you) will be successful. You are worthy of respect and consideration and if your mom and the agencies do not provide this, you must find it for yourself. Even if it means "forcing her into assisted living." You have done your best and it will never be enough for such a person, so you must make it enough in some way, including just stepping out of the job, after trying to provide an alternative. She sounds like a very frightened, insecure person who deals with these powerful emotions by being demanding, controlling and critical--her attitude may be, "If I don't do it this way, it won't happen." I know, because my husband who is now bed-bound is somewhat the same way, and I have had to learn to stand up for myself over the last 4 years.


Name: Audrey Miller
Location: New York City
Date: 09/12/2012
Time: 08:52 AM

Comments

I understand how you feel. I was my mom's primary caregiver and assisted her in her transition. I was able to make it a beautiful experience by journaling and remembering that I had control over my environment (she lived with me). I knew that if I felt good about the situation that would inturn influence her emotions. So, it all started with me. Try doing this quick and easy excercise for one one week, you'll see a noticable change in your mother as she's just picking up on your vibes. Spend at least ten a minutes a day writing down your mother's positive traits. List as mnay as can and just feel each one as you write them. Then interact with her. You'll not only see a change in her attitude but you'll also be able to attract others who can help you. Believe you me I know what I'm talking about . When I only approached mom's situation from a loving perspective, I was able to attract financial, medical, emotional, and physical assistance for her. I hope this helps. Audrey


Name: L. Skinner
Location: Nashville, TN.
Date: 09/11/2012
Time: 04:46 PM

Comments

Make an appointment with her doctor and let him know your feelings. I found with my mother that if her doctor felt it was a great idea she was more receptive. 4 years ago we went through this with my mother, we tried respite care for a week at a retirement place, and when she began to fall we wre forced to keep her at our home and stop working (this was not an option)or move into assisted living. At first she was not happy but the staff is used to this. Roles change, we become the parent. L. Skinner


Name: Catherine Sweezy
Location: Hartford, CT
Date: 09/11/2012
Time: 02:44 PM

Comments

I was in your same situation, caring for my father alone. My family tuned him out and was in denial. It was easier that way, to blame your loved one. Then you don't have to put forth any effort. My father had a reputation of being difficult; but in hindsight, he was actually suffering from advanced dementia. I wish I knew that at the time. I would have used our time together more wisely. I don't agree with leaving your mother alone. If family and friends won't or can't help out, then you must find help from agencies that specialize in caregiving. I would try to find some relief from someone like Companion and Homemakers or another similar agency. The Town where you mother resides may also have programs and be able to direct you to care. Your mother's Doctors can assess your mother and perhaps recommend places you can go to help. Another consideration would be live in help. There are agencies that do that very well and your mother can stay in her home but be cared for. It is far cheaper than any facility as well. Be prepared to pay for these services and yes, they are expensive; however, if you mother has financial means, she needs to use her money. If she ends up in a Convalescent home, it will not be as nice as assisted living and her money will be spent for her healthcare at an alarming rate. Also, putting your mother in any facility, Convalescent home or assisted living is not the end of your caregiving. You will still need to be an advocate for her. She will need you more than ever to adjust to the situation. I know that feeling, of being at the end of your rope and can say I got there several times. My faith kept me strong and kept me advocating for my father. He was always there for me and I need to do the same for him. If you can find some help for your mother, even a companion for her to do things like take your mother to appointments, clean, shop or cook, or whatever else you are doing, it will allow you to spend some quality time with her. You mother is scared and frustrated as she knows she needs to depend on you and it's the last thing she wants. It's also her last shred of independence. Sometimes people hurt the ones they love but bear in mind, they really don't mean to. I urge you to get relief. It will help you and your mother, even if you have to use tough love to help her. Good luck! Pat yourself on your back for what you've done so far. It's a constant struggle, but it will not be forever and you will never regret helping your mother. Always remember this, you are not alone:)


Name: Gloria
Location: Florida
Date: 09/11/2012
Time: 02:18 PM

Comments

You didn't state your Mom's illness. Does she have some form of dementia, cancer, mental problems,etc? Tough love does not work with a dementia patient. Their brains are changing and they are little able to understand the world as we know it. If it is cancer, she may be in pain or just plain scared and taking it out on you. You talk to her doctors and see what they suggest,possibly a medication to calm her down. Maybe even a medication for you to help your anxiety level. Four hours each 3 months is unacceptable, you need, at the very least, 1 day each week to yourself. Can one of the friends who are suggesting an assisted living facility give you a few hours a week to stay with Mom? Is there an adult daycare in your area? Please get back to the Dept of Aging and be more aggressive about needing help. If you don't get some help for yourself, she will be left to fend for herself if you pass on before she does.


Name: Jane
Location: New Port Richey, FL
Date: 09/11/2012
Time: 01:26 PM

Comments

I just read what Peggy wrote, and while I agree in part, beware -- You didn't say why your mother needs a caregiver. Is she, like my mother, suffering from dementia and insisting she is not? My mother drove me out after a year -- big mistake. Make sure you are Power of Attorney and Health Care Surrogate for her. Make sure it is valid. Make sure you understand how it works and how to invoke it. A shyster lawyer got my mother to sign a new POA revoking me and made himself and a woman my mother hadn't spoken to for 2 years POA and HCS. They told her that I didn't care about her. The whole 2 weeks I was away (and I wasn't far) I was advocating for and trying to learn how to deal with her. Then I came back to that. They lead her to believe that I didn't care about her. The lawyer was someone I contacted for help. That's how he helped. I now have a 3rd party guardian. You don't want that. It wasn't explained to me properly. All decisions are out of your hands. Maybe you could spend a few nights nearby in a motel and check in on her -- but don't leave her alone so others can exploit her. If she can afford assisted living she probably has some money -- there are plenty of vultures out there. They will exploit an elderly person for chump change -- never mind serious money. BE CAREFUL!


Name:
Location:
Date: 09/11/2012
Time: 12:03 PM

Comments

Hi Laura, This sure sounds like a difficult situation, you don't mention what is her physical condition or diagnosis, because a change on medication or new medication can help her moods, also if she is able to stay by herself, or does she needs constant care this will make a big difference. My husband is in a hospital bed now, but before I use a bed rail so he couldn't get out of bed at nite to prevent him for falling, and I would go early en the am when I new he be sleep and go for a walk it was not only good for the body but for the mine that is my quite time and I come home ready to face the day. Best of luck and keep us posted. Also you don't mention what state you live maybe another caregiver from you area may know of resources that will be helpful.


Name: Peggy
Location: Iowa
Date: 09/11/2012
Time: 05:32 AM

Comments

What I have to say will not be very encouraging, but due to her attitude and lack of help from agencies and others, I recommend just walking out for at least a week. Have everything ready for yourself, tell her what you are doing and then firmly leave and enjoy yourself for one week, maybe even two. Then return and see how she is: if she is handling it herself, if her attitude has improved and she is more receptive. If she is treating you better, then continue to help her but set limits of: having 1-2 days away where she is alone or one week every month. It sounds like she is deliberately being stubborn and in this case a little tough love is definitely needed. She may also realize that an assisted living place wouldn't be too bad after all. But do use tough love on her and walk away for a few days. It will force her to think and if she still is her nasty self, then maybe she doesn't want help and will just need to struggle by herself.


 







 

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