Mother-in-law (88) problems.

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Almost totally blind, hearing going & walks very slow & unsteady.


Katcare, welcome. I too am in Colorado.

Is MIL in a facility? Maybe PT? More information would be helpful. When did she last see the doctor? Are these unusual symptoms for her?
Even though she is nearly blind, deaf and unstable on feet she insists on visiting family out of state. When she gets there she expects to be included in everything the women do. I'm a daughter in law & traveled with her to Texas to help her manuver the airiport. We live in Colorado. We aren't doing fun things but errands, picking up children, going to a large mall with lots & lots of walking. It takes us forever to do anything because shes soooo slow. Can't relax either because constantly looking back & watching out for her. She then complains that she doesn't like all the things we are doing. And she hates the heat. Plays favoritism with her 9 grandchildren. What can we do to discourage her from traveling by herself & being a ball & chain when she gets there! Help
She is living in a very nice Retirement facility. See's Dr for minor things. Recently fell scraped her arm 7 & jammed foot into boxes. Says she wasn't hurt. About a wk later I noticed her jammed foot was swollen. She didn't know it because she can't see her feet. Dr did a cat scan on leg to ck for blood clots. Didn't find anything but put her on high blood pressure meds. But she just lost them on last wks trip.I saw them in bathroom but she insists she never brought them. She has macular degeneration. We all love her but it is increasingly hard to deal with all the aging issues. She has two grown sons. One in Texas pretty much doesn't do anything with Mom when she is visiting them. My husband & our oldest son just moved her to a smaller unit in the facility where she lives. They also, the yr before moved her out of her house of over 20 yrs. I also helped. And it was one hard stinking job. Not to mention we moved the very same week as she did. We were so tired etc, She put her house on the mrkt 2 wks before she was to take another trip to TX. Of course she couldn't relax because of house on the moment! Then it sells right away & she gets all uptight & wants everyone to hop to & get her move down because she doesn't want to think about it anymore. Finds a smaller apt the next yr Got the key to it on Sunday & wanted to move in by Wednesday. She gets so antsy & agitated were all sick of it. We've tried to talk to her about her impatients. Doesn't seem to care what we think. Right now we all don't want to help her anymore. What should we do to ease the situation?
This is your husband's Mom? What is his opinion in all this? I would let him do the explaining here. Clearly, boundaries need to be set so that you are not dancing to her tune all the time. Parents with adult children need to be respectful of their children's lives and schedules. Her son needs to explain this to her. Has she always been agitated? If this is a change in mental status, it should be reported to her doctors.
If she lives in a facility staff there should be encouraging her to participate I their activities. It sounds as if you are very involved in her life. My only suggestion is to back off and let staff do their jobs. As ba8 says establish boundaries. If she wants to go to Texas, have the family there help with getting her there so you get a much needed break. Does she have any issues with dementia. If so, they are notorious for not understanding their care needs. It sounds as I'd she is in a nursing home with the issues that you list. If assisted living, maybe a move is in order.

You sound terribly overwhelmed and it is time for you to take care of yourself and your family. Not MIL and other family in Texas. Deep breaths. Old folks is just old folks. They are set in their ways and very difficult if not impossible to change their behaviors. And if there is dementia behaviors cannot be modified and will just continue to get worse.

You too can say NO, I will not do that.
Yes as we age we all will start moving slower, and we will starting losing some of our hearing and some of our eyesight. We will be stuck in our ways, and we don't like change. We will feel the younger generation doesn't know what they are talking about. And what is that music they are listening?

Of course we will want to visit family, who wouldn't no matter what age. And walking in malls isn't all that much fun if one is using a cane/walker, or has point pain ... we rather sit down and *people watch*, lot more entertaining in looking at the floor so we won't trip.

Heat is rough if one has high blood pressure, makes us very tired. But if that is where some relatives live, what can we do. As for moving, thank goodness it's not a daily chore.

Some times we have to step into our parent's or in-laws shoes.
Stop trying to cater to her. Get her a wheelchair. If she's going to a mall or some other place requiring lots of walking, she either uses the wheelchair or she doesn't go. There are places that are completely unsuitable for a senior with walking issues to visit . . . a mall certainly being one of them. But no reason she can't go with in a wheelchair...

When you all learn that just because she wants you to "hop to" doesn't mean you have to, I think you'll enjoy your MIL a lot more. Start using her money to help her (and you) do the things she needs. And don't say, "She won't." She doesn't have that option anymore.

You can stop her from traveling by stopping your escort service.
She has been told several times that she should use a wheelchair or stay home. Are you kidding? She has to be right in the thick of it. I am backing off. She's had a great long life. Now the daughter in laws want to live theirs. Son's in the picture do see the problems now. Only because we told them. Their content to do guy things and occasionally help her. My husband has helped her move the last 2 times. At what point should she go to an assisted living facility? The blindness is the worst problem. She takes medication that she is always getting mixed up. She had a discussion with a Walgreen's worker that she needed an extension cord with 2 female ends! She wanted to string her microwave & toasted oven on the same cord. Like Xmas lights. No can do. Worker said unless you want to blow up your place! She's fallen 4 times in the last 8 months too. She's very stubborn! Used to have nicer personality. help
My mom is the same about wanting to be right in the thick of the activity. But as time went on, that wasn't possible. Like your mom, she refused to use a wheelchair until we refused to take her to the mall or any outing that required walking. It took a year of going nowhere before she finally agreed. You have to draw the line for safety and hold fast.

Maggie, it sounds like if katcare doesn't accompany her MIL, she'll travel alone, which is scary with her vision and hearing problems.
Katcare, the things you mention are what many of us here face every day. It is all part of getting older. It can be exasperating, but it is just part of life. The only thing you can do is decide what you are personally willing to do, then stick to it. The main thing is to make sure she is receiving the care she needs and to let her know she is loved. I doubt she means to be a pain. She is just getting old and doesn't know how much longer she will be able to see or hear. Empathy goes a long way.

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