New to caregiving and need to vent.

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We just moved Grandma in 1 month ago. I am so new to this. I am actually an RN, but nursing school was 20 years ago and we did not learn how to live with our elderly grandparents. Our geriatric rotation was 5 hours and then we got to go home. I can do anything for 5 hours. A 93 year old 24 hour confused room-mate is harder.
I feel like the only reprieve I get is when her caregiver is here in the morning for 3 hours (I escape to the gym), or when I am working, which is not all that much of a break!
It's the dementia that is making it so hard. She asks the same questions over and over, and she hardly ever stops talking!! Sometimes I just have to ignore her because I feel like I will lose my mind if I tell her one more time that yes, she did have lunch, would she like a snack? I don't remember her being this chatty when I was a kid. She wants to talk non-stop. If I leave her to do laundry, dishes, dry my hair, clean her room (you get the picture), she gets all weepy and tells us she is in the way and we should send her to a nursing home. She actually isn't in the way (and we tell her this over and over), but we cannot sit and visit with her all day. I have stuff to do! I did remind her of her crochet project and that helped for a couple of hours. And I had her help me with a sewing project I am working on (even that was hard, I asked her to rip out 2 seams and she asked me at least 10 times if I wanted her to rip out both seams. I finally wrote "rip out both seams" on a piece of paper but she was still confused). THIS IS SO HARD.
We know her days are limited and we want her to feel loved and wanted, and she was just wasting away in her retirement community because her mobility has become so limited. She wasn't leaving her room. She lost 30 lbs in 6 weeks. Every time I went to see her she was sitting in her pajamas alone watching TV. We take her out almost every day. Yesterday it was just a walk around the park in her wheelchair, but she got out. Today she got her nails done. I know for the most part she is really happy here. We have kids and a lot of activity.
OK, I feel better. Just needed to vent. I don't have anyone to vent to. My mom is racked with guilt because she didn't want to move her in with her, and my sister has a million kids. So thankful for this forum. And wine.

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lesa1919,
Good morning, I try not to judge others because every situation is different. If your Grandmother being with you feels right, and it is working.....it must be right!! For you to feel in your heart that "she would do better with family", tells me you have a big heart! That is exactly how I feel and would rather have my father with me than with some random caregiver. That is a battle yet to be fought ={.
When I would get very upset, I would take a break and think about it being the disease, not my father. Every so often dad would act out, but that was the disease..... the rest of the time dad is sweet as pie, love him so!

What you both are doing is so wonderful!! Try not to get to stressed. You can do some deep breathing and exercise. You are a lifeline to those you care for and that is AMAZING!!
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It sounds like you are doing all u can do. And it sounds good to me. You decided and I decided to do this job so alls we can do now is vent. I have 1 friend left, to talk to and he has a girlfriend so that's hard enough. This sight has helped me. I read stuff and cry and somehow that helps me. Its like therapy. God Bless your heart lesa1919
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Thank you LilDebb39.
Seanbean61: My Mom and Uncle would have continued to pay to have my Grandma stay at her apartment, but we all know she would do better with family. I offered, they accepted. Should they have taken her in? Maybe. But I honestly think its best for her if she is with me. I don't know if it was the right thing to do or not, but it feels right. And it's working. Just figuring out how to work out the little kinks. As for my mom's boyfriend's mom, she has money, a lot of it, she pays for her own care and has no desire to live with them. My Grandma's financial situation is different. She doesn't have any money. My Mom's boyfriend is most definitely not selfish. I should have mentioned that he has faithfully contributed financially for my Grandma's care, no relation to her. He just knows their limits, not everyone is cut out for caregiving. I didn't mean to make them look bad. There are a lot of circumstances, but I have taken up enough of this forum's space. Thank you for your concern.
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Instead of trying to put blame and responsibility on others I think lesa1919 is doing one heck of a job. She is no different than most of us on here. She would rather take care of her Grandmother than leaver her in some facility where she knows she will not get the best care....but will pay a fortune anyway.
I have been in her shoes...no help no place to go. If your having a bad day, just remember...It is the disease. Try and think back to better days. :).. I treasure the days I have with my father, good or bad! Good Luck and God Bless
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Who is taking care of your mother's boyfriends mother? Does he have siblings? It is difficult to care for an aging adult, but having them living with you is an added burden. I know caregivers in other states that take care of the elderly, then go home. They have said that they probably could not do it if they had to live with them. Someone needs to be appointed as a guardian to your grandmother who makes all the financial, medical, etc., decisions for her since she is creating problems like you describe. My suggestion around this selfish boyfriend of your mother's, besides dumping him, is if he has siblings, as your mother does, that they have a family meeting to discuss sharing "in-home" care of her for a certain amount of time and that way, no everyone gets a certain amount of time to continue have a life. If they are not willing to do that, then there are much more selfish motives behind the excuse of it's one or none. I can't help but wonder whether or not your mother has given any thought as to who will be taking care of her when she is in the same condition that her mother is in? You? If she is draining her savings and your uncle, then who will pay for her care? You? You are in a place that I don't think you should be placing yourself at such a young age when you need to be living a full life. These are things that the children have to work out, NOT the grandchildren. I think that you are remarkably self-sacrificing and I think that it will eventually start getting to you and cause some resentment between you and your mother and uncle over time.
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Seabean61, My mom lives with her boyfriend and he said "no parents moving in". His mom is elderly too and needs help, so he decided neither, rather than choose 1. Plus my Grandma makes my mom crazy. I have more patience that way. I don't think it would have been good for either of them.
There is a bit of resentment too...Both my Mom and my Uncle's retirements have been postponed because they have been financially supporting my Grandma for the last 3 years. They set her up in a beautiful retirement community with a HUGE rent. Now that she is requiring more and more help, she was not using the facilitiy's amenities, AND they were having to pay more and more for a private caregiver to come in. It was totally draining them. My Grandma also wasn't thinking about the repercussions of some of her actions. She wanted a burger for dinner, so she didn't eat what the facility was serving, called her caregiver at 9pm and asked her to bring her a burger. That burger cost my mom $50. It also wasn't cheap when my Grandma was curious to see if her Life Alert worked in the game room. It did. $350.
Anyway, I am doing this for my Grandma and my Mom and my Uncle. They send me money to pay for a caregiver to come everyday to help with her shower (I do it on Sundays, I like to keep an eye on her skin and such). They said they will send me more if I need more help, but I am trying to hold out for a little while. I will ask for it when I need it.
Anyway, That is my story.
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Lesa,
Sounds like you are doing a wonderful job!! It is so difficult when you are the only caretaker. YOU need to take care of YOU too!! This is very important! I would call your State or city , Center for Aging, Church or even the VA or VFW, American Legion. There are programs out there to help. To come in and sit with
her for a while. God Bless you, you are doing a great thing. These facilities, nursing homes do not treat our loved ones as well as we would. Hang in there.
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Your mom says she feels guilty for not wanting to take her in....she should be ashamed that she has dropped her responsibility onto you! You should not have taken it on, but since you are, find out from your mother what she is willing to do to help out!
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What I don't understand is how you came to be the one taking in your grandmother and not your mom/dad or their siblings?!
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Booper37 hang in there sweetie man it sound like it just gets harder and harder. I really did not want to spent my late 40's like this. But oh well. She gave birth to me. You sound like me though. I have no where to go also. no one to help me. And the constant complaining that is not true. Sometimes upsets me. I get 2-4 hrs of sleep while she gets 12-16 hrs. and she says she never sleeps. But you are doing a good job, always remember that. That's what I have to say, I could be in Hawaii but I chose this. There was no one else. And she said if she was in a home she'd haunt me for the rest of my life, that sounds scary.
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