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My husband has been in the Veterans Home now since September when he became violent with me. It was the hardest decision ever, but I had to do it because I was so stressed and scared of him......The person I have loved deeply for 39 years! He has been going downhill, but on Sunday I took the dog to visit him and it was a wonderful day. He actually was able to talk to me in complete sentences on Sunday. My dog made all the difference. He sat in Bill's lap and licked his face and Bill came alive! They hadn't seen each other in 5 months! It perfect day.
But here is what I really wanted to share. A very close friend just wrote to me. And I hope this encourages some of you on the fence to put your husband in a home!

When I was telling you about my sister and her problems in taking care of her husband, I had no idea what was going to happen. I was talking with her on the phone last evening about 8:30 and I heard her smoke alarms going off and she said Bobby had set something on fire. I immediately hung up and called her son and his wife. They live about three miles from her. Clarice tried to get Bobby out of the house, but he was already on fire and weighed 230 pounds. She managed to drag him from his chair and tried to pull him across the floor to her deck doors. Her hair caught on fire and she couldn't breathe, but managed to get herself on the deck to try to get air and go back in to try again. The house was fully engulfed by then and Windows were shattering. They were not able to get Bobby out and it is truly a miracle that she was not seriously burned or killed. Their house was destroyed and Bob perished. We all agree that it was not her time to die and that she have had a helper inside who protected her. She has some minor burns on her fingers and her hairdresser cut her singed hair and you can't tell it was damaged. she was blackened all over and had breathed the noxious smoke ! But the hospital sent her home with her son, and she is fine to all appearances. She says to be very careful for what you "wish for" because she dreaded so very much having to put him into a home and had told many people that she did not intend to live in the house without him. She says both those decisions were made for her. This is shocking and tragic news, but I am so thankful that Clarice is still here. I know that God is not done with her here yet. I hope you have a pleasant week and maybe you can take your dog to visit Bill again since they both appeared to enjoy that so much.

So this is what I wanted to share. Be careful caregivers and take care of yourselves too.

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Whoa, wait a minute. In the midst of the fire, she calls a you instead of 911? And you call the relatives instead of 911? That's a sure indicator she is not fine and she should not live alone ever again. You need to think about it too.
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Very powerful reminder that when things get difficult the best thing we can do is get calm and think logically and rationally about the problem in order to find the best solution. It's not easy to remain objective when dealing with people we love who need care and help but it is essential.
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That is a very powerful story to share, it really can help someone to feel alright about passing the primary care to trained professionals and allowing your self the freedom to be the spouse, child or loved one again. In Caregiving we can lose sight of our relationship because the day to day, cleaning, washing, bathing, and other caregiving duties become overwhelming. Being able to enjoy your emotional relationship again is good for both the Caregiver and the Cared For.
Thank you for sharing.
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Thank you for sharing. These moments, as tragic as they are, sometimes contain valuable lessons, as you point out. When we are trying to choose between keeping our loved ones at home versus relocating them, we can convince ourselves that the dangers are not real, that they're exaggerated. A fire can become a living, breathing thing in moments, and Clarice is truly fortunate that she came out of it alive and relatively well. My prayers are with her, and also with Bobby, who deserves our full compassion as well. I will pray that she doesn't struggle with inappropriate guilt or self-blame...
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Oh, I see. It must have been so horrific. Thank you for sharing.
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It was not my sister, but the sister of my friend. Please say prayers for Clarice today. She must be in terrible shock!
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Oh my goodness. What a terrible tragedy. My condolences to you and your family. Thank you for sharing your story. I hope it will help someone who is not sure about what steps they should take to get help for their home situation. It must be so difficult to make that decision for placement if it's a spouse or even a parent. I think it was easier for me, since it was a cousin, who I did not live with.

I hope that your sister is able to recover and that you continue to have good days with your husband who is in Memory Care.
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Wow, what a sad story. I am so sorry for your sister and her loss. Thanks for sharing it. Sometimes it's best for everyone concerned to have professionals taking care of our loved ones when they have various forms of dementia. Your story is the perfect example of why.
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