My 89-year-old mother has just been placed in a nursing home hospice unit and wants to come home. What can I tell her?

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Wow, my mom is in an assisted living facility and asks the same thing. I'm about to visit her in Oregon for the first time, and I know she'll ask me to come home to California.

My plan is to be firm and to just tell her that it's not possible. I can no longer care for her, and she told me that she never ever wanted to become a burden to me. I have to tell her that caring for her had become an incredible burden, as she would fall 2-3 times a day in her home, pee her pants, etc. I just believe we must be firm, loving and adamant that they must learn to live in their new surroundings.

God bless you and good luck. Vicki Johnson, CA
Top Answer
We had the same problem with my husband's aunt when she went into an ALF. We focused on physical activity: when she could toilet herself, walk with her walker by herself, etc. THEN she could go home. We knew the chances of that happening were slim to none - we were right. She died within 6 months at a nursing home.

Regardless, it is NEVER easy to tell an elder what they don't want to hear and don't want to accept. Try to not be invested in the question and keep it as neutral as possible and based on something that think they can fix or make better. Giving them a goal is good, even though YOU know they can't attain it, it gives them a sense of being in control of their life again. Once in a great while a miracle does happen.

Best to you, Evpraxia

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