Follow
Share

My MIL has had sketchy memory loss the past 5 years but the last year she has lost short term memory in drastic amounts. The last number of months has been 5 minutes loss for every month. She is down to a 3 minute short term memory now with the last decade having become choppy as well. Long term consists of 3 years old up to ten years ago that is pretty clear.
Her one brother that she hated now can be mentioned in her presence without her "going off" whatsoever though, which is tied to 2003, so the "decade" reference may be lucrative.
At any rate, she still is living with my FIL who had quad -heart surgery 18 months ago and is quite stressed dealing with this reality of "loosing" his wife of 50 years and daily being accused of lying, being wrong about everything, and not knowing anything because she is always right.
It's like all the good parts of my MIL have passed away and all the negative parts that could exist have stayed with us and she is down right defiant over even taking medicine. The doctor can't even force her to do what her husband tells her or to make her have a brain scan. She says her husband is the one with the problem not her.
At this point, we know time is very limited that she will be living in the house especially since he has to leave her so often for work, but our issues is how to get her to be checked into the AL without a downright fight. Her sister lives in a nice one where they could be in the same room, so we think that would be best. We need ideas how to go about all of this. My husband has been as helpful as can be as his dad is mentally adjusting to the idea and waiting in the "I'm ready" while his brother has not visited or been a part of any of the situation to be involved, help, or ask how his mom is or what he can do to help, so it is up to us. (They may be an issue when it's time for her to be put into AL, but that's another issue).
The only idea we have come up with is have her things at the AL ready, all paperwork and such done, have my FIL drop her for a visit and step out but leave- at that point my husband and I will be outside to take him to our home for a few days to breathe (which is an hour away) and we can go back with him in a few days after the initial blow is over.
How would that work?

This discussion has been closed for comment. Start a New Discussion.
Good point there. My husband and FIL had the doctor arrange for a nurse to be able to come by and check on her a few times during the week. When she found out it was for HER.... She went off the wall and they had to cancel the nurse. So back to square one and putting everything back into my FIL.
I will definitely tell my husband about the specialist attorney. I can see how that will definitely need to be looked into quickly at this point. Thank you!
(1)
Report

What a sad story! Given that MIL has dementia, there is nothing unusual going on here. The accusations, the resistance, the "I'm always right" attitude -- all that is common.

Have FIL and your husband considered bringing in some outside help, or perhaps sending MIL to a day-care program to give FIL some respite?

You may be thinking of this as a family matter, and a medical issue. It certainly is both of those. But it is also a legal challenge. Unless a person has been declared incompetent by a court, and a guardian assigned to make decisions, a person cannot be held against his or her will. Not in Assisted Living, not in a Nursing Home, not in Memory Care, not in a Group Home ... no where.

I think your plan to move MIL in with her sister sounds fine. But if she refuses to stay there, the facility will not be able to hold her. Also, sister may change her mind about living with a person with dementia and decide she wants some peace in her own final years.

Getting MIL into AL is one issue. Keeping her there is another.

Since one of her sons is a wild card here, that may make the situation even shakier.

I think the next move is for your husband and his father to consult an attorney who specializes in Elder Law. (The specialty is critical.) Lay out the issues and let the professional explain some options and some "what if" scenarios. He or she may come up with a strategy none of us are going to think of.
(2)
Report

Sorry I didn't include that! They are both 70 this year and she started showing symptoms 5 years ago, and the past 1-2 years it has really sped up considerably.
Almost 2 years ago we tried to confront her on seeing a specialist about her condition and she continues to stay in total denial and has become increasingly defiant toward my FIL and the doctor over anything they want her to do. It is a feat to get her to take her Meds. She is "right" about everything, my FIL is accused of everything, and she is never at fault or has anything wrong with her. It never crossed her mind whatsoever there is anything wrong with her and that one night she yelled, cussed us, threatened me, and in 30 minutes would forget anything we explained and would start all over saying it was my FIL who had something wrong with him. So that's where we are all a little gun shy, so to speak, in putting her into AL.
My FIL had stints put in 15 years ago and at the point of a heart attack, went in for a quadruple bypass 18 months ago, so he does get winded and tired easily. This whole situation takes a lot out of him.
As far as working, he his semi-retired. The company just allows him to do little jobs and keep him on hand due to his years of knowledge and experience. He can come in if he feels like it or stay home if not.
He idea of dropping her off is the only one I have thought of that might work as well as telling her sister what is going on so she knows how to deal with her from that side when they get her ready for bed and such and my FIL doesn't return. I expect they will have to give her something right away if we don't when we leave the house on the way there with her usual Meds to make her calm as possible.
My husband mentioned tonight even a distant cousin they saw recently they hadn't seen in a while mentioned to him that he needed to get ready for when she needs to be put in AL not long from now. That was surprising and a relief too knowing someone agrees.
I try to deal with it with my head and not my heart so I can think clear but these boys have big hearts in this family and my FIL and husband are going to be a handful. The other son has had little to no contact with them since this has gotten bad so I can only expect a hurt yelling match from him and the fact he never understands because he acts first and doesn't listen.
Thankfully the wills have been set up already and living wills so no problem there. As long as they have it so only FIL or my husband can check her out (which I don't ever plan on become eagle won't remember why she was out) we should be ok.
Any suggestions or ideas we may have overlooked is definitely welcome!! Thank you!!
(1)
Report

How old are these guys? FIL is still working? Your idea about moving her to AL is as good as any I've seen but it's sounds as though she's quite capable of having a nuclear hissy fit, so be prepared.

With her memory this bad you may be able to bamboozle her into care. Tell her the house is being fumigated, then the next day it's the roof leaking. It's called Theraputic Fibbing. If she's with Sis that would be a huge plus.
(2)
Report

This discussion has been closed for comment. Start a New Discussion.