We (my husband and I, sisters and brothers) made the decision, with my mom's consent, to move her from SD to my house in NC. It's not working. Her dementia/Alzheimer's is too far past the stage where my husband and I can care for her. We have found a small private long term care facility where she can move to. Mom is not going to take this move well. My health is at risk due to the stress from constant care, arguing (I know I'm suppose to divert and redirect, but it doesn't work with my mom), and I spend more time in tears than not, so keeping her in our home is not an option. She has a dog which she totally dotes on and has said that she would die before giving up her dog. This facility will not allow dogs. I'm so torn. This is the right decision, but why do I feel so bad about it? How do I tell my mom that I (we) moved her from SD to NC only to put her in a long term facility and she can't take her dog, which is about the only thing she loves? She hates it in NC, but there is nothing for her in SD. No one is able to take her into their homes, nor are they qualified to do so. My life has become one big battle ground with the occasional time out to regroup.

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We're taking mom tomorrow to a small group home, hopefully in time four lunch so she can have a "get to know you" over lunch. There is another woman starting tomorrow as well so maybe that will help. I've also been advised of the "don't ask-tell" philosophy from others as well. I get flack, but she does what I tell her. Kinda like my daughter when she was 13. I love this site and all the wonderful advise, suggestions and support I've received. Thank you all so much!
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Momasays, I know this is so hard and you will cry a bucket of tears. I want you to think about it this way: when a little child needs medical care, you don't *ask* the child what he *wants* to do, you *tell* him what he's *going* to do. Your mother's brain is broken, and you have to do the heavy lifting. When you leave, get her involved in something, turn and GO for the door. Don't turn around. You may have tears running down your face, but you have to leave her there and walk out the door. Just like the first day at school, you have to be the strong one. The people at the home will be able to take care of her just fine and she will adjust. If the home says to stay away for a number of days, that is the thing to do. Let your mom adjust to the new situation. (((Hugs!!)))
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Thank you all for your support. It's been a really hard day and has reaffirmed my decision to place my mom in a group home. Everything I say is an argument even it I agree with her. If I answer a question (right or wrong) she doesn't believe me. She's threatened suicide, she fears for her life, wants to sleep outside because it's safer, has fed the DD (d*mn dog) 5 times in 2 hours, won't believe us if we tell her she has, accuses us of lying, trying to drive her crazy (I think that shoe is on her foot), and I'm tired. I don't know how people do this for years. They have my admiration. Thanks again for all the hugs and support.
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You are doing the right thing, as you cannot take care of someone else, when your own health is compromised, and that includes your mental health!

She will adjust with time, and hopefully you will be able to bring her dog in for visits.

Do not be shy about asking for medications for her for anxiety which will help her to settle in and relax her.

Next up should be you getting into seeing your own Dr, so that you can get a full workup, and address your own stress and wellbeing!

I hope things settle down for you, and do comeback for suggestions and guidance, as so many folks here have been in your exact shoes. 

Remember,  this is just the beginning of what will probably be a whole lot of work for you, and lots of setbacks along the way, so you need to be in tip top shape, to handle things as the crop up,  as that is the nature of the beast we all know as The Caregivers Role, I know and it Sucks!  

Just this morning,  my husband found his Dad on the floor at his Assistant Living apartment,  wedged in between his dresser and bookcase.  There no telling how many hours he's been there, and he was transported via 911, to the ER, and I'm waiting to hear what's what.  It's incredibly frustrating and worrisome,  so take good care of you!

You tried, and that is very admirable, so don't beat yourself up over it. She is very lucky to have such a loving and caring daughter! Take care!
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Momasays, you are doing the right thing. Yes, it is difficult and emotional. You need (deserve!) to re-build yourself. Keep coming back here for support. (((((hugs)))))
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Thank you all for the support. This is really hard. My sisters and brother all agreed to this decision and I have their support, but they aren't the one taking her and then driving away. That's the hardest part of all. They all live in SD so visitation from them will not be often, if at all. Placing her is the best decision, but it's a hard one to implement especially she she isn't going to be happy. Thanks again for the kind words and the support.
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Once the dementia reaches a certain level, explaining, convincing, etc. may not be possible, so, I wouldn't count on that. And even if you were able to do that, she would likely forget it. Once, it reaches that level, those responsible for the LO need to overlook the challenging behavior and get the LO to a place where they are safe. Once that's done, the LO can be taken care of and protected. If anxiety or depression are present, discuss meds with her doctor. Medication helped my LO to be much more content and less anxious.  Some might try to say that the doctor is requiring that they go to AL for therapy, rest, medication, etc. and even bring the doctor on board.  That helped with my LO, but, she would forget and I'd have to tell her over and over.  I wouldn't count on getting it settled, accepted and resolved. It may be something that is contested and complained about a lot for a few months.  I don't know any way around that, unless she forgets it. 

Keep in mind that no matter where they may be, they may be unhappy. Dementia patients are often miserable inside their own home and very disagreeable. Making her happy, by doing what she wants is not likely to make her happy either. Their brain is just not working properly. I'd keep that in mind.

The dog issue will also resolve itself. My LO was obsessed with her beloved cat, but, she forgot about the cat within a matter of weeks, once she got settled into AL. Your mom's welfare must come first. You can check with facilities, but, with Memory Care units, I haven't found any that allowed pets, because the residents are of such a level of dementia, that it would not be feasible to have pets under foot, living in the unit. It's risky for the resident and the pet.

With the progression, their symptoms will change and she may not likely be this way indefinitely. Gather support from your family and read as much as possible about the condition. This site offers lots of support, so i recommend it as well.
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This is so tough. CD gives good advice. As hard as it seems she will eventually settle in. Can you take the dog for visits? How advanced is her dementia? It may not be worth the pain to try and make her understand this move. Can you do some Theraputic fibbing?
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Dear Momasays,

You are such a good daughter. You tried. It is so hard to care for an elderly parent day in and day out, it does take a toll. It is stressful. I know its not what you wanted, but you do have to put yourself and your family first.

I know you love your mom and want to do what is best for her. There is no easy way for you to break the news. I wonder if the whole family can be in the room when this happens. Hopefully this will show your mom that everyone is on the same page.

I tried to appease my dad but letting him stay at home. But in hindsight it was a mistake. It will take her time to adjust to her new surroundings but in the long run it will be ok. My grandmother didn't want to go either but all her children thought it was the right decision. It took her almost a year but its OK now. Please keep us posted and let us know how you are doing.
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