Dealing with a grandparent with Alheimzer's and dementia with a 3yr old
Okay, so... I live with my boyfriend and our little boy who will be 4 in a few months. My boyfriend's mother has severe Alheimzer's and dementia. Over the past few months she's gotten worse then usual and I really don't know how to handle myself because of the fact it involves my son!
We live in a town home. It's 2 stories. So my boyfriend's mom has access to upstairs. We had to replace all the locks because she's a wandering risk. We also have a lock on the door to the basement cause that's where me, my boyfriend and our son live. It's 2 stories if you include the basement.
Anyway, since the stove and main fridge are upstairs (we have a mini fridge downstairs), we have to go upstairs to get food. Whenever my son is up there he likes to run laps around the house. He's not hurting anyone and me and my boyfriend prefer it if we're up there for a few hours cooking or whatever. I'm honestly tired of my boyfriend's mother yelling at my son for running through the upstairs of the house. I've even seen her put her foot out trying to trip him while he's running! I've seen her grab his arm once and I almost lost it. I'm very protective of my child.
Sometimes when my son runs his laps, his grandma thinks we have neighbors downstairs or something even after we tell her otherwise. But once she's told otherwise, she'll make up some other story as to why he's being bad and will continue yelling at him. I'm also tired of her cheap snarky comments toward me as a mother.... This entire situation has made me more depressed then I usually am cause she can't just chill and let my son be a damn kid.
I've told my son that grandma is sick in her head and that she doesn't understand, but I don't think he's old enough to comprehend that yet. Also, my boyfriend is the only one that can bring her back to reality. She doesn't remember me 99% of the time even though I moved here in Dec 2012 before she had fully lost it. Back then she could still drive, cook etc. Now she literally can't do anything. She basically sleeps and eats. That's it. We also administer her medicine 3 times a day. She's not the healthiest and she's 80 years old.
We pay for an adult care center but getting her up to actually go is a pain and many times she'll argue about it. In the end she ends up not going cause trying to get her out of the house is more stressful then letting her be. We have a caregiver that comes twice a week to watch her, clean and cook and sometimes watch our son but I always worry about leaving my son around his grandma these days. Our caregiver has told us sometimes how mean my boyfriend's mother is to my boy etc. And it's just.... I don't know what to do anymore.
I want to put her in a home but we can't afford it. I asked my boyfriend about a state home but he's against it cause he says they're worse then ones you pay for outright. We have no lives. We can only leave anywhere 2 times a week together when the caregiver is here otherwise my boyfriend goes alone to do errands because someone always has to be at home. Plus my boyfriend has Parkinsons so he can't watch our son by himself. My boyfriend is tied to his mom's bank account which is how we afford basic necessities and pay the bills. I have a bank account but no income.
I'm also chronically ill and my own Dr. doesn't know what's wrong with me. So with me and my boyfriend unable to work, we're basically living off of his mother's social security check. So you can imagine how difficult this is to deal with.
How do you all deal with this? I feel like I'm at my wits end, mostly because of how she treats my child. She's gotten so much worse lately. The anger is almost instant the second my son starts running. Literally, that's all he does. He just runs. He usually doesn't get into stuff or do anything out of the ordinary. He just has a lot of energy. And when he sits down to eat or gets pulled into a cartoon it's like an instant switch off for his grandma and all of sudden she will go on and on and on about what a good boy he is..... I'm very worried how this erratic behavior will affect my child.
Most of the time she doesn't even know where she is. Many times she doesn't recognize her own son anymore. Occasionally she thinks her husband is still alive even though she's been twice widowed. Or how she'll think she's babysitting when she's not.... Or when she thinks her parents are supposed to come pick her up even though they've been dead for years. She's so far deteriorated at this point. Only things she can still do herself is make toast, dress herself and go to the bathroom.
I guess I'm just looking for advice on how to deal with this with my highly energetic 3 year old son. Sorry for the long background story. Just thought it'd help paint the picture of what's going on.