Should my mother sleep at her Assisted Living facility on Christmas Eve or at our house?

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Mother, age 90, has early Alzheimer's and advanced dementia. My sister does not want Mother to awaken without family present on Christmas morning at the Assisted Living facility. In my opinion, if Mother stays in my sister's home overnight, the changes in routine and the absence of Mother's regular caregivers will be disruptive and could give Mother mixed messages about her need for assisted living. Mother lived with this daughter about 2 years prior to moving into assisted living. Mother thinks she will recover and eventually return to her own home. Mother has not requested to return to her daughter's home since moving from there. Mother would be away from the facility approximately 20 hours as there is a big dinner on Christmas Eve early in the evening at the home of Mother's niece. My sister's teenage daughter (14 yrs. of age) is usually excited, very active and loud - especially on Christmas morning after discovering and opening "Santa's" gifts.

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I tend to agree with you. The disruption could be hard on her and she may not understand what is going on. Also, she may find going back to the AL another disruption and even more confusing.

Everyone is different, and each family has to figure these things out, but I have found that bringing the holidays to the person with dementia worked better for us, than disrupting their routines by the sometimes difficult process of bringing them to a home they may not even remember. Good luck with whichever you do. All you can do is your best,
Carol
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After putting my mom in an ALF I always would take her out for all the birthdays and holidays. I thought that she would feel bad if we didn't include her, and I would also feel guilty but I have come to realize that she gets too anxious when she is away from the ALF and probably won't be taking her out anymore, instead we will go to her when possible. She's much happier that way and isn't confused or anxious.
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I used to have my dad, aunt, and uncle(all siblings) in my home for the holidays until this year. I agree with everyone with the fact that living through this, I now know that it is wearing on them to get ready and come to my house and hard to visit with so many people and stiumulation. This is the first year we will be going to the nursing home to celebrate the holdays. I felt guilty and sad at first, but now know that they will be much happier and rested and feel safe and secure. Iook back and enjoy the memories of having them all at my home, but now we are making new memories :)
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Your mothers lucky! She has so many people who care about her!! It might seem selfish that your sister wants to bring her home for the holidays but in the long run it might work out for the best. Holidays are a tough time and your sister might resent you if it turns out that this was moms last christmas and she could have spent it with the family. Worst case scenerio- mom will go home early. I have found in caring that it wasn't the things that I did that I later regretted- it was those things that I didn't do that I now look back on.
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I have always felt that in these situations their world is shrinking and it is best to let it shrink, not to alone but to select few and a safe and familiar environment. I know my grandfather did not even like going more than 10 miles in the car at one point. it is like a child in a lot of way a very young child really knows just his or her home environment before they are able to go out and explore, basically it is reverse aging and the exploring days really are over. Try and consider how you would feel if you were old, and tired and confused. weak, incontinent and sore and where just getting dressed had become a chore...the idea of packing up to go someplace for two days and then come back and get resettled really no longer feels like a vacation... I would say brief but regular visits of loved ones and just being with the person in their new home would be best for everyone less hassle for you and less stress for the older person....
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In one way, I would side with your sister...it's only for a night. ...but having had my MIL here at the house for a little over a year and a half...I would agree with you. If her routine is upset, she may be afraid and fall out of bed or walk out in the cold. My MIL was staying at my DPOA SIL's house one night and she got frightened and let out a blood-curtling scream. It woke everyone up. Not to mention, it didn't do well for us when she came home. I would have her spend the night at the ALF, where she has a routine set up.
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If she's in "early" Alzheimer's then this is likely to be the last year it will work to take her out, if it works at all. If you take her out and it goes well, great. If you take her out and there are problems, well, you'll deal with it and next year you won't do it, and your sister will know why. Underneath the question of what's best for your mom is, do you want to fight with your sister about this? You two have to work together for a long time to come. If she feels this is the last chance to be together at home, do you want to be the one who says no, and neither of you will ever know whether you were right?
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If your mom lived with your sister for 2 years and since being in assisted living hasnt asked to go back she is use to where she is and when she returns after the holiday shhould be fine. From my experience you would be surprised what persons with dementia get use to. Now my question is if your sister is concerned about mother waking up on christmas at the assisted living home why did she not make arrangements for the family to visit her there? Does your mother know it is Christmas? I know when Thanksgiving came around and I was preparing dinner and setting up for the family, my mother had no clue. She thought she had to go back upstairs because I was having company, my daughter and son had to go and convince her to get dressed and join the family. Tell your sister not to asume she know what your mother wants, watch her reactions. Just like she never ask to return to your sisters home, she will eventually forget she can return to her own home. I t took my mom about 3 months after living with me, now she does not even ask about her home. She may still think about it because that is what persons with dementia and alz do, remember things from past. If your mom is anything like mine, after a few hours of a lot of people and children she will be ready to go home!! (assisted living home), because that is what she is now use to. Pleas dont you or your family frustrate her by keeping her with you if you can see she is tired or aggravated, and make sure you have a place she can go and sit alone away from a lot of noise, because trust me at some time during her stay there people are going to start getting into their own conversations and forget she is there. But good luck to you all, its great you all are even thinking of your mom at this season, my siblings did not come for Thanksgiving to spend with mother and only one called, and neither has said anything about Christmas!!!
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Remember you both love your Mom, which is why you have concern for her in different ways. You mentioned your Mother has advanced dementia so that says something to me. Everyone caring for a loved parent has different experiences, so think about how this relates to your Mom’s situation. My Mom was diagnosed with dementia over eight years ago and for the last three years has lived in an ALF. It started out with her going with us to holiday events, and even outside of the holidays we spent much time away from the ALF. But as time passes things change for people with dementia. Over the years we have gone from a fairly active interaction away from the ALF to mostly quite times at the ALF. As much as I want to work up a plan to make it work so my Mom could be with us, it is not about if I could make it work, it is about if Mom could handle all the activity and interaction.

Everyone’s situation is different, the hard things is facing and accepting the small changes that take place over time with dementia, and making the adjustments to make your parent comfortable. That might mean less activity and more quite time. I am sure you and your sister will work that out. What ever you decide the love will always be there. Hope this helps. Happy Holidays
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My mother, who had ALZ, would get nervous when going to activities, even at the NH. My brother, his then wife, and one of her grandkids, came to visit one time, and it so upset her, that she wanted to leave. One of them may have tried to bad-mouth the facility or try to convince her that she did not need to be there, I don't know. All I know is that she was upset and wanted to leave. The next time he came to visit, she had settled into the routine of the home, and was not upset.

Currently I have another relative, age 92. She does not have dementia, but has mobility issues. She can't climb steps without difficulty, and decide that she does not want to go to her niece's house for Christmas. Also, there is ice and snow around, does not want to leave the house at all. Therefore, she and I will be spending Christmas quietly at home. I have been bringing her presents to her, one present per week, with the rest to follow, Christmas Eve.
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