My mom has been living with me and my husband for a year now. She was evaluated and has dementia.

Over the years before this, my family knew something was not right with mom and her memory.

Now me and my husband are taking care of her. My siblings are no help whatsoever. They don’t call to say hi to mom and see how she is doing. They don’t call to see how their older sibling is doing (me) because I have had my own health issues and so does my husband.

I have been very depressed and cry myself to sleep a lot over this thing with mom. And it is also affecting my job. Me and my husband don’t take care of ourselves like we should as far as our health goes. We are taking care of mom and getting abused by her words especially to me. And I can’t handle it anymore.

We have had her on a waiting list at a memory care nursing home and I feel the next time a bed opens we are getting her in there.

Sometimes I feel guilty about this. But me and my husband need to take care of ourselves first. We are tired of the abuse we get and feel this is the right thing to do. But sometimes friends and family make us feel like we are wrong to do it. I just wished they could walk in our shoes for a day or two to see what we have been through.

I really like this site a lot. Thank you for letting me get my feelings out.

It sounds like the friends and family members who don’t understand the needs and level of care necessary for a person who has dementia, are ill informed and/or insensitive. This is really unacceptable in this day where information is at your finger tips. Any professional website and resource supports the family members and caretakers in getting the right care, including placement. Although their words may be hurtful, I might try to inform them about the matter, provide them some literature about it or perhaps a link for information. Or, you could just ignore them, and move forward with what you know is right. And have peace with it. It doesn’t sound like they are supportive anyway.

Oh, before placement, you might ask them to care for mother for a couple weeks so you can have respite time. Perhaps, this would provide them some perspective.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to Sunnygirl1

The next time someone makes you feel guilty about wanting to place your mom in a Memory Care home, tell them you'll be packing her bags & dropping the bags AND mother off at THEIR house that evening!

I guarantee they will keep their mouths shut from then on.

You are making the right decision for everyone's sake. Don't feel guilty, just move forward. You can always visit her in the SNF as often as you'd like.

Best of luck!
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to lealonnie1

If siblings are complaining about you placing her, they are simply projecting their own guilt onto you (unless your mom has money, then it is probably about their inheritance being spent). Whatever the case, ignore them.

Nobody, and I mean NOBODY has a right to guilt you into giving up your health, money and LIFE to care for someone else that needs 24/7 heavy duty care.

So often these well-meaning people imagine the Hallmark Channel or Grandma Walton version of a sweet elderly woman sitting calmly in a rocker, crocheting and not being ANY TROUBLE AT ALL to anyone, cooperating with all the daily activities of the household, happy and grateful to have a place to live, etc.

These "helpful advisors" don't know jack squat about sun-downing, screaming and violent behavior of a dementia patient staying up all night and trying to leave the house, you finding dirty diapers have been used to redecorate the walls of your house during the night, etc.
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Reply to XenaJada

I had my Mom for 20 months. For a year it was 24/7. It was like caring for a baby again. And her decline was monthly. I was trying to sell her house and with money she already had, I could get her into an AL for the required 2 yrs then Medicaid would step in. So, I had that and a disabled nephew who was going to need a place to live if the house sold. I was driving myself nuts. So, the last 8 months Mom was with us, I placed her in an Adult Daycare. Gave me from 8 to 2:30 to do what I needed 3x a week. I ended up placing her in an AL with the money she had. When that started to run out, I placed her in a nice LTC. By that time she was in the last stage of her Dementia.

Ask these friends and family if they would like to care for Mom for a week while you take a vacation. I had support of my siblings. Did have one friend who said "I took care of my Mom". Yes, and she was in her early 50s and I don't think her Mom lived with her. I was 65.

My SIL just transferred her Mom from Independent living to an AL. A big lift has been taken off her shoulders. No more worrying about scammers getting Moms money. (Oh yeah, big time) She doesn't need a phone in an AL. No more stopping by Moms apt every night after work to make sure she is OK and finding she did something wrong. ( this woman is a handful) Mom is now safe and SIL doesn't need to oversee her 24/7. My SIL is losing her hair from the stress. Told her to leave my brother home and come up for a week of girl time.

Your Mom will worsen as time goes on. She will need more help with bathing, toileting (for me the worst)and everyday ADLs. I congratulate those who can care for a LO through every stage of Dementia/ALZ. They sacrifice their health and their future. Some spending their retirements. But not all of us can or want to do this. And thats OK. You do what is good for you.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to JoAnn29

Nobody knows or should judge till they've walked a day in your shoes. Let them make their comments. One day when it happens to their parent/sibling etc. they might be singing another tune. Just hold your head up high and be proud of yourself.
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Reply to Gershun

Take care of yourself. Don't pay those folk that seem to know best but are not living the experience any attention. I cared for my mother for 4 years prior to placing her in memory care so I know it is very difficult. I remember I had an uncle that gave loving advice but he wasn't living it. His opinion changed after he agreed to let her stay with him for a week, while my husband and I went on vacation. My mom wrinkled up his freshly dry cleaned clothes (and there were a lot of them), removed clothing from his dresser drawers and even packed some of his things in her suitcase, stood over him at night while he attempted to sleep, was argumentative and was exit seeking. My uncle had to call another one of their siblings over to sit with my mom so that he was able to sleep during the day (because he couldn't sleep at night). When I returned home my uncle put his hand on my shoulder and said "I don't know how you do it baby because you have your hands full, you are doing the best you can". He even told me that if I decided to place her he had my back, because he doesn't want to hear anything from those other clowns (my mother's other siblings). Please take care of yourself because who will care for your mom if you don't since no one appears to be stepping forward now? If you must place her it doesn't mean you are abandoning her, because there is still a lot to do after placement.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Grace21

Let the comments from friends & family roll off. They just don't know.

I look at it like this: You are not lessening the care for your Mother by moving her into a Memory Care NH, you will still be caring for her, being her advocate, being a loving visitor PLUS adding professional care 24/7. You will also be caring & promoting better health for yourself & your DH.

It will be MORE care for everyone.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to Beatty

I hope a place in Memory Care opens up very soon!

I hope your mother has been paying you for her care since she moved in with you.
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Reply to CTTN55

I am so sorry you are going through this. It’s terribly hard to be caregiver. You and your husband deserve to live your life free of the anxiety that accompanies caregiving.

You’re not wrong. You’re exhausted. Best wishes to you and your husband.
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to NeedHelpWithMom

Cheribear5, you and your hubby are doing the right thing. There comes a time when it take a village to take care of a parent, especially when the parent has Alzheimer's/Dementia. Your Mom will be with Staff who are familiar with the ins and out of such memory issues. Therefore, pat yourself on the back for making a wise choice.

I also live in the Washington DC burbs, and luckily we have many choices of senior facilities in the area. It doesn't hurt to have your Mom's name on numerous waiting lists. I know some places require a deposit to be on the list, but usually the deposit is refunded in full if you change your mind.

And I know it can be unnerving when family and friends make comments. I remember one time at work I was grumbling about driving my quite elderly parents all over hill and dale. I was a senior driving much older seniors. One co-worker said "don't forget your parents drove you when you were young". Yep, she was right, BUT my parents weren't in their late 60's when I was a child. Big difference.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to freqflyer
JoAnn29 Mar 1, 2020
Never looked at it that way. My Mom didn't drive till her 50s. Took Dad's illness to get her to take the test. Dad...he worked shift work so there was a lot of walking on my part.
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