How can we help my mother get used to being in a nursing home before she drives me crazy?

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My mother has been in a nursing home now for a month. She is fine to the nursing staff although sometimes stubborn, but when my sister and I go to visit her, she starts with the tantrums and crying binges about wanting to go home. She is not able to care for herself anymore because of her diabetes and bathroom issues so going home is not an option. She would rather sit in her little room in front of her tv and feel sorry for herself. How can we help her to get use to her new home. She also has dimensia and forgets about when she is really sick and had vivid dreams of just coming to visit and going home with my sister.

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We've had really good luck with the foster home alternative. It's like having a smaller classroom for students. They always do better when it's more one on one. Why do people automatically think nursing home? Nursing homes are okay, but NOT for everyone.
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I just wanted to share a great site that I just discovered. You can google AlzOnline or alz.org. VERY helpful information regarding dementia anger and aggression as well as a Caregiver Bill of Rights that anyone who has the responsiblity either hands on or working with a nursing home should read.
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I agree! Take a break and maybe she will act differently!
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If your visits upset her so, take a vacation and don't go for a week or 2. If she's still upset, wait longer next time. If she is abusive, you don't have to stay, but can quietly leave. Sounds like the staff is doing fine, so give yourself a (I'm sure) much needed break.
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I noticed the time that my mother-in-law spent in the nursing home recovering from a broken hip, was much better when myself or other family members came and visited. She does have dementia, short term memory loss is really bad, but she wasn't mean really. I did notice after a month or so, she started getting depressed. She also started getting a sore on her backside. I met with the nurses and nutritionist and made clear to them it was unacceptable. She was in there for a BROKEN HIP! She didn't come there to die I told them. No one got upset with me, in fact they were appreciative that we wanted to be hands on with her care. After that meeting, my sis-in-law and I got her out of there for the day. Just getting outside into the car and getting ice cream somewhere was wonderful to her. It was my main goal to get things back to as much normalcy as possible. Now, like I said she wasn't going to stay there after her hip healed, but if she continued with the bed sore, and depression set in, then she would have had to stay there for who knows how long. When she first got there, she complained about how rough they were when they gave her a shower. I knew it was because they had so many other people they had to get to. So I asked them if I and/or my sis in law could give her the shower. They were more than happy to let us. She was happy, I was soaked, but the whole thing was too funny and we all needed the laugh. We didn't do it every time, but it was enough times to make her happy, and us feel like she wasn't falling between the cracks.
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My mother in law has lived in her house since 1958. She and her husband raised three boys in a two bedroom house. When my father in law died Nov of 2007, she lived by herself in that little dark house. She can hardly see because of the macular degeneration, but she refused to move. Then 7 months ago she fell in her house and broke her hip. It was the excuse we needed to get her out of there. After recovering at a nursing home, we found a wonderful asst. living place. She has been out of her house now for 7 months, and not a day goes by that she doesn't say she wants to go home. I used to lament with her about not being able to go home and tell her how sorry we all were, but after a while I just tell her it will NEVER happen. She knows it's for the best, even with the dementia she knows she was lonely by herself, but she still wants to go home. We had arranged meals on wheels at home for her, got a medical alert necklace too, but knowing that she was there just watching TV all day and walking around her driveway 4 times a day was terrible for us.
She would get mad when she found out we were not coming to see her on a particular day, but instead were doing other things. Her whole world revolved around my sis-in-law and I constantly entertaining her, or she would get mad. She is a wonderful person really, and she does admit it's better where she is now, rather than being alone. BUT she still says she wants to go home. I have resigned myself to that fact, it will never change. Where she is, is NOT home. She knows that of all us kids, I am the one that just puts it out there for her. If she wants to know the truth and not have someone sugar coat it, she'll ask me. I told her that what she really wants, is a time machine. It's not the house she wants to go back to, it's the wonderful times she and her husband had there. I told her if it were possible to make a time machine, then people would be lined up around the globe wanting to take their turn. She agreed.
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SueG Hell must be where you find yourself at times when your once loving mum says this things to you. I can't even imagine how that must feel, how sad and broken hearted you must be,looking into her eyes, as if looking into a stranger that hates you. I wish i had advise to help you, but i really don't, but i wish i did, but i know this much guilt is not something you should carry at lease not in your heart, one does the best one can do,and nothing more should be expected from one's self. We look at our best friend or our worst enemy when looking in a mirror. so don't be so hard on yourself SueG. The weight of sadness will not ease but time will allow you to carry it with more strength
God Bless you and strengthen you on your road.......Fernando
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SueG,

The guilt is there because you are looking at them with the eyes of a child. You remember them as they once were, not as they are now. Remember that they are in a placement because it is safer for them and that they are getting the help they need. Visit the professionals there, but don't always go see your family member. Checking up on the facility, the meds schedule, the caregivers and the nurses will give you some peace of mind. Don't put yourself in a position to receive the ranting and ravings of someone who just isn't the person you loved anymore. When you do see them, bring someone with you to document their behavior. When the expected behavior starts, LEAVE!!! It my sound cruel, but you can't change them. Also, ask if their meds could be affecting the bahavior. Do your research and ask many questions. Good luck.
Linda
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Any one? How does one deal with the guilt associated with placing a family member in a nursing home. When professionals, (Doctors & Nurses) tell you that you should not take the ravings of hatred and then crying and constant wanting to go home personally, it sounds good, but does not help. When someone is telling you with real hatred in their eyes that they hope you are killed on the way home, that you do not love them, that no one ever loved you, how do you NOT take it personally. I want to help make but how do you help someone who wants you dead. Wow, if I had know this would be like this ......
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SueG, sending hugs.
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