I have found the system in our country completely inadequate. You either have to be independent for Assisted living or nearly incapacitated for nursing homes. My dad is in-between.

I took him to respite care on Friday, yesterday. He called crying (we knew he would) for us to pick him up today. We are.

And I can't blame him. Assisted living homes don't offer respite and the nursing homes are depressing.

Dad has mid level alzheimers. He is functional. Still weaves art pieces. Still bathes himself. Can't take care of bills nor understand concepts. But is not in need of nursing care.

And the cost of these places are ridiculous. I will use in-home help from now on when we need a break.

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We only have ourselves to blame regarding wanting more social programs to help care for the elderly. How many times on the voting ballot in your area have you seen where the State/County/City/Village wanted to raise taxes for this or that, and it was voted down. It takes tax money to implement these programs.

Many foreign countries have excellent systems for their elderly, but have you seen the high tax costs in order to do so? In some cases you send half your income to the county for income taxes. Doubt the U.S. would ever get the ok from the voters to do that. So, we have to use the help system we have now, which by all accounts is better than having no system at all.

CarolAnn, most of the time I get the feeling that the country sees the elderly as a herd of cash cows out in the field.

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