Is moving in to take care of my elderly grandparents the right thing to do?


My grandmother is begging. My grandfather is semi-resistant most days. He has Alzheimers and she can no longer care for him 24/7. It is not so advanced he wanders off, just advanced enough he can sometimes not recall where we are when we are out. But he is mean spirited, defensive, and demanding, unlike his normal self. She could not care for their large home alone but is more afraid she will pass away and leave him here knowing he cannot handle his own care or the home.

My grandparents basically raised me. Specifically my grandmother.

I live 1100 miles away with my husband. We are seriously discussing moving across the country to live on the second floor of their home (basically an apartment, it has 2 large bedrooms, a den, a full bath).

We have talked about buying a home down here or renting, but they actually want in-home care.

Is this the right thing to do? Will we regret it? How do I know what is the right choice?

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The thing I would suggest is to make a long visit first to see how it works out. I left Texas and moved in with my parents in Alabama. I'm sure everyone is familiar with the quote "You can never go home anymore." I found it is true. It is very different because you have had a life of your own. Something I've had some difficulty with is being in "their house" and being their child. It gives them a lot of control. If you have a close enough relationship, you can work around it. But it is not easy for many people.

Would you like to do this for your grandparents? Or do you feel that you should do it because you are asked? How would it affect other members of your family? Many older people (70s+) come from a generation that was not very mobile, so don't like the idea of leaving their homes. They feel safe there. Sometimes, however, there are better places that they just haven't experienced yet. Maybe you can think through what is best for them and for your family. If it seems that moving in with them is best, than it would probably be. I hope the decision you make will be the right one.
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This all depends on what you thinking is best. You are already a caregiver to them just not a full time live in one. Full time caregiving has many also has many rewards. I can tell by ready your question what is already in your heart. Just make sure you have all the scenarios planned what happens if in a month you or them decide it just isn't working out...what will happen then..will they move to assisted living? Nursing home? Make sure the arrangements are sort of open ended. Do not make a promise to do it for the rest of their lives...this often causes so much heartache and guilt if it didn't work out. I read something somewhere on here that said "most caregivers go onto this thinking it will last a year...average caregiving last 7. Where are you and your husband in life? Do you have small children? Is starting a family something you plan for the near future?how does husband feel? It may make it easier since you already spend a considerable amount of time there. It may be the most rewarding thing you ever do. You already have an important tool to help you make the decision right here. Some people do it with Grace...some people do it wanting to pull their hair out the whole time.
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Oh - I should mention - I am already their Power of Attorney and handling 90% of their financial needs. I handle doctors appointments and most other things too. I (or we) spend 2-4 weeks here at a time, multiple times a year. (I am a business owner and fortunate enough after installing an office in their home that I can work from both places.)
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