granddaughter1 Asked March 2011

How do we get our uncle to want to spend time with his mother?

Follow
Share

A few weeks ago my husband and I (mainly me) became secondary caregivers for my husband's grandmother who has mid-stage Alzheimer's. Her youngest child quit his job and moved in with her last summer to help get her on track due to elder financial abuse by her oldest son and his wife. In getting her finances back on track he decided to have her attend a senior activity M-F for about 4 hours a day because she's be in the house all day doing nothing. Recently, our uncle has asked us to "Grandma-sit" (his words) so he can have weekends free since he says she's done things that make him very leary of leaving her alone ever. We live about 50 minutes away so far the past 2 weekends she's stayed with us. Uncle brings her to our house and I bring her home. The agreement was once a month, but now our uncle is asking for a third week (but my kids and I already have plans so I couldn't have her over).

I've given our uncle ideas of things his mom and he can do on weekends together so he's not so trapped as he says. My ideas have been going for walks, going to see a movie or going to a museum. We both live outside of a major city (them North and us South) so there's no lack of activities at all. He says he doesn't have anything in common with someone her age (she's 76 and he's in his late 40s).

Unfortunately, the only trustworthy family she has anywhere is the uncle and then my husband and I. Grandma's other 2 children don't check on her even though one is in the same county. The oldest son and family moved 2 hours away so they use that as a reason to never check on her, not even a phone call.

Our uncle and her doctor have made Grandma aware that eventually she would need to lived in a nursing home or similar, but my uncle doesn't want o do that just yet. He doesn't want to do anything with her except necessities like medical appointments. Grandma doesn't want to go to a home and fears that eventually she'll be sent there. She says she rather live with us than a nursing home (although I haven't told our uncle). We have the space and the guest room and bathroom are all hers when she stays.

My husband and I don't mind her coming over and our kids and I have a nice time when she's there. The consistent friendly reminders of things I said or having to repeat things over and over in a short period of time are a bit annoying, but we lovingly do it because we know it's not on purpose.

We feel that if she's going to be over every weekend so that our uncle can have his time that she might as well live with us (she agrees with that too). Her son yells at her, belittles her and makes her feel embarrassed, even in front of my family too (who've made comments to him about his verbal treatment). Recently on the way to our house she said she had to use the bathroom and he wouldn't stop anywhere - so she peed on herself since she wasn't wearing depends that morning. He says he's so frustrated with having to care for someone who's like a child. Since I don't live with her, I don't completely understand his frustration. I can empathize, but don't accept his poor treatment.

My husband isn't involved in the medical prognosis because he's so busy with work so really it's just his uncle and I that are involved in Grandma's well-being.

Can anyone offer any advice on how to get our uncle to want to spend time with his mother? I feel bad for her and want to be able to provide our uncle somemore support as well. I never imagined having to be involved in the care of a grandparent (not even my own blood relative), but that's definitely what this is turning into. Thanks for your support.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
5

Answers

Show:
Thanks for your suggestion. Actually it's my uncle who has said he doesn't want to do anything with his mom except doctor's appointments. The only time they're in the same space is from 3:30 pm to bedtime each weekday and on weekends.

Actually alternating wouldn't be so bad since the only family members my husband's grandma has are the son who moved in and her grandson (my husband).
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Maybe I misread your post, but it sounds like your uncle is providing care / companionship for the grandmother 5 days a week and wants to have weekends off.

If that really is the case, don't you think that is is unfair of you to characterize him by way of "How to get our uncle to want to spend time with his mother?" Why not say "ALL of his life with his mother"?

He might be on here somewhere in another thread asking how to get YOU to give him a break on the weekends, since he's reached his breaking point.

One other thing to consider is that it is very common for the elderly to report things like "He doesn't want to do anything with me except necessities like medical appointments." regardless of the actual truth. Later on she might end up saying the same things about you.

Until then you have the benefit of being the greener grass across the street.

But besides all that, I think EVERY weekend is too much to ask of you. What's wrong with alternating?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

OK thank you!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

You're probably on to something with the weekends since Grandma said he probably wants his girlfriend to come over on the weekends, but she doesn't get in his business.

My husband and I have the same thoughts that if we have her over for a week or so that our uncle would want her to stay for good so that's why we haven't brought it up to the uncle. He alluded to the fact that once she's gone the house is his, and that's totally fine if he inherits it because our life is so settled in our own neighborhood.

I've never heard of Adult Foster Care, only Adult Day Care, which she's been in since last summer when he moved in. I'll definitely look into that in our area. I'll talk to my husband more about having her over for more than a weekend. He and I are both ok with her living with us full-time, but if we did we'd just have to know what we're getting ourselves into as far as her insurance coverage and other financial responsibilities that it may entail.

Thanks for your great suggestions.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

NancyH Mar 2011
You know, my first reaction was, is he just burned out or has he got something going on the weekends (woman maybe?) that he needs to attend to. My second thought is, can you and your husband take grandma for a week? During that time I would think you'd certainly have a better idea of the whole he said she said thing. I'm just afraid that once you do take her for the week, that he'll say 'keep her, she's yours' then what? And does it have to be a nursing home? What about Adult Foster Care instead? Much smaller, much more one on one help. Maybe you ought to be looking in your neck of the woods for such a place for grandma. Then she wouldn't have to live with you, but you can still be there to see her.
Another red flag for me was this son of hers moving into her house. Does he expect to inherit or at least have squatters rights to her house once she's gone? I'd be talking to your husband about that. Tell him that a paranoid woman on this website was asking. ha.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.

Related
Articles

Related
Questions