Mom lives with me and can’t drive or go places independently and one of the heaviest burdens to me is her social life. Which right now is pretty empty. When we lived in the same town as most of the family, no one came to see her. When we moved 90 minutes away, no one comes over so I bring Mom to their town about 4 to 6 times a month. Even then, we don’t get to see everyone who is there – they are usually busy.
From time to time the topic of Mom moving to a retirement community arises. There is one place in our region that she can remotely consider due to her very low income. Recently an aunt told a friend they didn’t want Mom to go there because it was too hard to get to. It is 60 minutes from where they all live. Closer to them than we are now!
The same aunt said they weren’t invited to our place when they WERE invited. And yet, they never invite Mom over to THEIR place.
To add insult to injury, same aunt suggested places in their town that cost two and three times Mom's monthly income! She is clueless. Part of me thinks I should send her a budget spreadsheet showing what Mom can afford.
This isn't the first time this has come up. I get no assistance from them but talk about changing things and then everyone has an opinion! i just needed to vent.
Being a caregiver is like no other life circumstance. I'm so glad there is this forum to vent and to share with others in that same circumstance. Stay strong!
You might want to ask your mother what she would like to do. If she is content and happy, then do not worry. If you are having anxiety attacks or your own health issues, you need to place her in AL.
Was your father a veteran of the armed forces? If so, she might be entitled to a small VA pension. That is how my mother pays for her assisted living along with her social security.
One thing about her living in a retirement community is that she WILL have more people around her and have more chances to meet new people and build new friendships. I moved my mom and dad near me 12 years ago, away from all of my mom's friends. She made new friends at the facility where she lives. Unfortunately they've all passed away or moved away in the 12 years, so she's only got one "long-time" friend still left. At 93, she's decided she doesn't want to try to meet new people, so she's in her room more.
And like ChristinaW says, ignore all of the relatives' comments. They have no clue.
I just recently decided that if she did have somewhere to go even once a week, the pressure on me to provide activity would be even less. She is perfectly happy watching tv and playing on her computer but I'm not happy with her doing that all of the time. I'm going to look, yet again, into senior services in the area and try to figure some way for her to meet people and do something without me. I was worried before she would feel I was treating her like a child (you need to go to day care) but I think if I explain that she needs to interact with people besides me, she will understand.
I wish I could find someone who could take her to a museum or fishing or something. Without me. But I guess liability can be an issue.
Vent away, Dear One:) Tell us more! xo
Maybe Aunty would like to contribute to the care home cost? Right. Ha ha ha.
Realistically, let everyone know where she is, try to get local friends, neighbors, helpers to visit once a month and you will do your usual. My motto about this is : Expect the worst scenario. If something mediocre happens, be thrilled and appreciative. I think most people are good, honest and decent... But not when it comes to visiting elders and genuinely caring enough to make an effort, or to be consistent. It takes unique individuals to maintain the level of caring-- like us:)) xo