My mom (77) and dad (82) both suffer from dementia. My mom is way worse than my dad, but my dad has great difficulty walking. She cannot be left alone. My dad sold our family home a year ago, which my brothers and I were very happy about because it was way too much for them to take care of even though they had someone come in to cook and clean. Reluctantly, and only because they had to be physically out if their home, did my father agree to go to assisted living. Not just any assisted living either - it is the Cadillac of assisted living. Beautiful building, well kept, etc. Recently, my dad has been saying that he "has to get out of here". He wants his own house. He complains about not being able to sleep because of the noise and that all he ever eats are hamburgers and hot dogs. He won't tell the staff about the noise (he is next to the laundry room and they run it at night) and the facility always has three main entrees on the menu plus hamburgers and hot dogs. I don't know why he isn't ordering other things on the menu, all I can guess is that he doesn't understand what they are (ie Lasagna) but he knows what a hamburger and hot dog are.
If he leaves he says that he and my mom are going to get a dog (they can't even care for themselves and he wants a dog), and that they'll have 24 hour care. He has a house he wants to rent that has a couple of steps to get into but is basically first floor living, however he is claiming that he is going to remodel the bathroom with a walk-in shower to make it safe. We all live close by and quite honestly have been enjoying the peace of mind that comes with them living in assisted living. I feel like we will be going backward by them moving to a house where they will be physically and socially isolated. Also, I feel like someone (aka ME) is going to have to oversee the caregivers. I've tried explaining to my dad all my concerns but he says this is his life and he's in charge. He's basically being a rebellious teenager. He doesn't remember that he complained about the food the caregiver used to make before they moved into assisted living and that he's going to have complaints about the care in the house if he moves there. I've tried every approach. The worst part is, he has no idea of where my mom and eventually he are headed in the course if this disease. He just doesn't understand that she will require skilled nursing care very soon. He truly thinks they just need someone to cook and clean and be there. Also, my mom is now somewhat used to assisted living. My one brother wants to pursue legal action (guardianship?) if dad forces the issue of moving and my attorney husband says no way to that. I just worry for their safety, and that if they move, I'll be back to overseeing the caregivers and the run ng of the household like I was before they went to assisted living. I should add that I've got three kids (12, 10, and 7) who obviously still require my attention. If they were grown then this would be a slightly different story. My thought is possibly buying a new house for our family that has a first floor bed/bath and having them live with me but still have caregivers for them. I feel like I would sleep better at night. I know that it is probably common for people in assisted living to want to leave, but are we terribly, selfish children for wanting them to stay? Also, how can we persuade him to stay? Do we force the issue legally? My husband says that's basically like severing the relationship. I feel so bad for my parents - they've lost two children and I just want to see them happy, but I feel like he will only complain no matter where he is.