Dad with early/mid dementia hates assisted living and doesn't think he needs it.
My dear mom died a few weeks ago, and it was only because she was there that mom and dad could be in their own home as long as they were. She made us promise that dad would not be alone, and she was all for the assisted living solution. We sibs love our dad and tried to care for him at home to give him time to grieve, but we are exhausted (we also have jobs and families to care for) and don't feel he is safe alone. He is hard of hearing and has early/mid dementia. He forgets to eat and naps a lot, and tries to do things that were once second nature, but he can no longer do them. (writing a check/any banking, remembering to shower, remembering to change into different clothes, sometimes remembering to eat, etc). Yet in his more lucid moments he is able to make a sandwich, fix himself breakfast, shave, etc. and does pretty well at self-care. We cannot trust him with medications at all and he has a few different ones to take daily.
We tried many times to have discussions about moving to assisted living b/c we knew it would soon become necessary. Always the same response, "I think I'll just stay home." SO hard to try to help him see that staying home isn't one of the options; since mom died we have done everything for/with him - all meals, meds, cleaning, etc., because he is largely incapable and we wanted him to be safe and healthy. He doesn't have a clue how many hours of the day and night we have been there.. The disease is preventing him from seeing that he is no longer safe alone - he thinks he is actually very self-sufficient. In his mind we are ridiculous for even suggesting a different solution. We finally realized that the only way to move him would be against his will, since he would NEVER see the dangers of being alone.
Fast forward...we spent a ton of time weighing different assisted living options and finally picked one. We had a long conversation and talked him into just having a visit. Of course he decided he "didn't need that", then promptly forgot the whole conversation we'd had.
We knew we'd end up doing it without his blessing, but felt we had no choice. While one sib took dad out for a day, the rest moved his belongings into an assisted living place. We thought having all his own furnishings, pictures on the wall, etc. would feel comforting, and did the best we could.
He went absolutely crazy and asked the same ten questions over and over again. How could you do this to me; I can live home alone; I don't need this; why is my furniture here; who moved this here, etc. Seriously, he probably asked each question 50 times, never remembering the answers we gave.
It's been a few days now and he says that he is miserable. He looks terribly sad and we are a little disappointed that there are not as many activities available as what we thought. I think there a lot of lonely days ahead, despite many of us willing to visit. He is not a big reader anymore, though he used to be, and he is not very social either. As a family we are grieving because he just does not understand that there is any need for this at all. He thinks he is perfectly fine and capable, and that makes us look and feel like some horrible mongers. We are second-guessing all of this and yet - there does not seem to be any other options; we have looked at so many! Does it make any sense to even think of moving him back, only to have to do this all over again as the disease progresses? And what would we do in the meantime, anyway? He would not deal well with caregivers coming and going throughout the day that were essentially strangers to him. We are heartbroken and welcome any advice from those who have been there. We are worried he will never adapt.