How do you handle a parent with mild dementia that cannot be trusted to live by himself and must be put in a nursing facility?


The parents has diabetes, gout and other medical issues for which he takes several medications. How do you keep them from getting angry at the child and badgering them to come home.

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It takes time to adjust to living in a facility and it is normal to want to go home; to keep asking to go home and not understand why they can't; especially with dementia. Your father will most likely continue to be angry and take it out on you. As mentioned above, you will just have to keep reiterating why living alone at home is no longer possible and the reasons.

I think most importantly, try not to take the anger personally - and believe me, I realize this is not easy. When my mother was initially living in a facility, I took her out as much as I was able - to lunch, a ride, fresh air. It usually was not a pleasant experience, but I felt better afterwards knowing I had tried. I don't think there is any way to stop the wanting to go home or the anger. Try to redirect the conversation - I have become a professional at this.

If you are visiting and the visit turns uncomfortable - just keep it as short as possible and come back another time. Also, I brought many items that belong to my mother for her to decorate the room and make it feel more personal. Pictures, prints, bedspread, pillows, etc. - these did help. It is difficult and all you can do is the best you can. Take care.
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He will keep badgering - like a child would - if he thinks he is getting somewhere with it. Stay strong, explain simply why going home is not an option and lay out what the real options are. Lean on friends, family and this community as much as you need. From my own experiences with my parents I learned very quickly that they know our buttons well and will try and manipulate if they can. I also learned I wasn't talking with my sane adult parents anymore - by mid 70's they had become like children again and I had to talk with them more as the parent. It's a very weird role reversal to get used to. And they will not like it, but it's just the way it is.
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