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My grandmother is in her mid 80's. She has diabetes and has fallen several times. She has early dementia. She is a very difficult personality. She lives alone, but right next to her daughter who gives her her shots, medication, and meals 3 times per day. She will also stay to visit with her in the evenings for a couple hours and tries to during the day when she can (she works from home). My grandma was recently in an assisted living facility for rehab from pneumonia. She was getting wonderful care but she hated being there and was constantly asking the nurses to call my aunt or father to come get her to take her home. They recommended my aunt leave my grandma for at least a month to allow her time to get stronger and get used to being there. My aunt felt guilty (from my grandma's constant complaints) and took her home. She has been home for 2 weeks and has called my aunt and my parents at minimum, 20 times per day each, demanding that she needs someone there with her, she is lonely and can't be alone. (Even if my aunt just left her house). She claims she is just going to find a way to die because no one loves her. That is not the case at all, but she says it is. She has now changed tactics and told my parents she needs to come live with them. My parents are not in the physical or financial position to care for her. My grandma also despises their pets and the temperature of their home. Any suggestions on how to deal with this? My aunt said my grandma can't afford to pay for someone to sit with her daily, nor can my parents or aunt afford this. I just see the emotional and physical strain this is putting on all the family. She absolutely refuses to go to an assisted living facility either.

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let her have the illusion of independence as long as she can have it. if she isn't too much trouble she deserves it. i can tell you love her cause you're asking and not just shoving her in a home. she will remember these moments for the rest of her life. .. she deserves to live outside as long as she can cause once she enters assisted living she's there forever. and this is unavoidable. so ask yourself.. if you unplugged your phone... would she still be too much to handle? can she shower and go to the bathroom on her own? if your aunt is willing to cook for her does she need to feed her as well? if not then the answer to the question is probably that she isn't that much of a hassle.. unplug the phone and call her.. put her on a block list. its simple.. she is elderly and deserving of liberty as long as she is able to have it. as long as she can use the poty and a bath tub/shower chair and eat with her own hands and mouth then let her have liberty!!!
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Sad4gram - somebody is going to have to get control of the situation. My advice may not sound nice, but it's based in real life experience. Grandma needs to be in a senior residence, possibly 24/7 care. Ignore grandma's words, emotional complaining, and what would be called whining if it came out of a 4 year old. There is a part of the brain that is the drive behind "I want what I want and I want it now", and it is one of the later areas of the brain to degenerate.

It's hard but it helps for the family to take a hard and realistic look at what's going on and stop reacting as if mom is the same as she was at age 45 and might be saying something reasonable. Has she been evaluated for dementia? What you describe sounds consistent with several forms of dementia. I'd have her checked out ASAP.

Do NOT ignore her mental, physical and medical needs. She needs to be in a community of her peers where there is appropriate care from trained professionals. She would NOT be lonely there. They would have activities that keep her stimulated, hot meals, laundry, housekeeping, and people who can help her dress, bathe, brush her teeth & hair. There comes a time in almost everybody's life where living at home alone is the wrong answer. We can't stay 30 or 50 forever and refusing to change with the need level only causes harm.

Yes, it costs money. This is something I feel is beside the point. Not because I have money because I don't. I get my bills paid. Mom isn't wealthy but had a decent nest egg put by. Her care costs HER money, not mine. There will be nothing left over when she goes, but so what. It was an investment in her safety, her well being, and a good death. The house & land sheltered her in life up until last fall. Its sale is inevitable and the results of its sale will keep her sheltered for a time longer. I have had to adjust to the idea that I will not be able to keep the land in the family because she didn't plan ahead of time and wouldn't let me. But I am of the mind that assets are only useful if they are being used. If I had a million dollars in the bank it would be pointless if it didn't do some good besides earn interest. Others feel differently and that's OK.

If you are lucky enough to have a Grandma Esther Walton in your life who is aging gracefully, count your blessings. Most people who come to this site have someone who is a real handful on a good day. My mom definitely falls into that category.

I decided that I was not willing to destroy myself or family over mom. Me doing the caregiving in our home is absolutely not an option. It's not a fear of hard work or mess, but a look at what the real cost of home care is. I'd have to quit my job, stop having hobbies, interests, and so would the rest of the family. Our entire existence would be about mom and there would be little else. That's not fair to anyone. Especially my kids. We would all go down with the ship. I would never do that to my children and I won't have it done to me.
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Sad your grandma should be in assisted living and not visited for a few weeks to let her adjust. For the first year in a nursing home my mother was abusive to staff and other residents and screaming at me on the phone on a daily basis. It's been eighteen months now and she's deteriorated such that she can't sit up or stand and can barely speak. She's 88 and has only recently come to terms with the fact that she is there for the rest of her life. The staff are wonderful and I visit every week. Though I cared for her for four years she eventually needed professional care 24/7 and, after a particularly nasty fall, she went from the hospital to the nursing home.
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Daughter I had a similar problem. I live in the middle of nowhere with just one house across the road, couple about 60, no kids, never a visitor. He's inoffensive, when he's sober, goes to work about an hour way and takes her shopping Saturday mornings. Apart from that she never leaves the property, smokes like a chimney, drinks like a fish and is a religious bible thumping looney tune.

When I first moved here she was always after me yapping about religion, satan, demons, conspiracy theories, the end of the world, what I should do with my property and so on. Saying not interested or trying to change the subject just caused her to start jumping up and down screaming until, one afternoon last summer, I snapped and threw her screaming a** off my front lawn. Problem solved :)

Unfortunately she has cats breeding and running everywhere, not neutered, no shots, which attracts the coyotes. Last summer we had a bad coyote problem and on one occasion they were jumping at my window trying to get my cats. I keep my animals in at night but by the end of last summer all those across the road had been killed and eaten. Now there are cats running all over the place across the road again and the coyotes are back. Here we go again :(
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Oops it's my first time here. Did not mean to hijack this post. Just needed to ask a question. Sorry.
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My mother is in a nursing home in another state. I am on the phone with her doctors, nurses etc constantly making sure she is getting good care. I have a brother that lives in the same town that does absolutely nothing to help her and asks her for money when he does visit. I call or visit her as often as possible and take are of all her legal needs, spending my own money.. My mother is finally seeing the effort I put into this and is finally thankful. I have an older sister that never calls and an older brother that does nothing but his wife has been very helpful, so in reality the entire care falls on my shoulders.. I'm at peace with this and will enjoy my mother until the end. I just gave her a huge 90th birthday party and she was so grateful..
Now the problem is my neighbor. She is an elderly woman going on 84. When she first moved in I helped her with everything she needed, fix her hair, take her to the doctors, listen to her endless stories that went on and on. She has a grown son living with her that works all day.. He is almost 60, never has been married and just goes to work and Church. I'm positive he does nothing when he gets home. My neighbor asks my husband and me to do things for her because 'her son is too busy studying his Bible'. My husband and I both work full time. I work from my home. I am also a crisis minister and have a passion for helping others. My neighbor drives me bat a** crazy....Calling my home constantly or when I go outside wanting to talk constantly, I can't take my trash out or work in the front yard without her coming out and demanding I speak with her. She is not that interesting and bores me to tears. If she see's my light on in my office she will call early in the morning and demand I give her attention. I work on my computer and she will say 'get off that computer'. She has to know what I do all day and where I go and is upset that I did not check in with her while I was out of town. My spirit hurts because I am a compassionate giving person but this woman is driving me insane to the point I want to move. I have told her I can't talk with her everyday, how can I make this madness stop without being ugly. It has given me much grief.
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I know will probably sound off the wall, but what about using Skype or some other type of face to face technology? Kinda like a baby monitor but where you can see Grandma and she can see you at your own home or your parent's home. There will be pros and cons to this. Maybe Grandma will get tired of knowing people are watching her and want more privacy ;)
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Geriatric psych evaluation for meds to help with agitation, depression and dementia. Then take her to look at several different ALF's or even Independent Living facilities if she's lonely and doesn't need help with adls yet. But make sure they have the ability to cope with what will be her changing needs.
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Grandma had more than pneumonia, she is now sliding into dementia and is afraid to be alone. She will find fault with everything no matter where she is. My MIL hated being home alone and wanted the company at ALF. Now she is talking about moving to an apartment. The best thing for you to do to help your aunt is to get Grandma back in Assisted Living. Then get grandma proper meds to make her happy.
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I agree that this is on your aunt. I bet that your grandmother was fine, where she was. I remember my sisters bringing my mother home from the hospital, after a broken hip - before she was released to go. Then, they were mad at me, for not helping. Hey - she was supposed to be in the hospital.

My mother bugged my sister on the phone, until the day my sister died. I would give her the same advice that you are getting. Do not answer the phone. But, she just wouldn't or couldn't. Now, Mother is fine in a NH. She never phones unless it is a necessity, but she outlived my sister.
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This is a common issue.

Unplug the phone or turn it off completely. Suggest to your mom that she call your grandma once a day, when it's convenient for her, and ignore the calls for the rest of the day. When your grandma starts going on about how miserable she is, how no one loves her, and how she wants to die that is the signal for your mom to get off the phone.

Your aunt bringing your grandma home was a huge mistake. It takes all elderly people time to adjust to a new living situation and I don't think your aunt gave it nearly enough time. Now your grandma has gotten the message that all she has to do is whine and complain and she gets her way. Plus, if the need for assisted living ever comes up again your family will never get her to agree to it again since she hated it so much and wasn't given the opportunity to get used to it.

Your grandma can't force her way into living with your parents. If she can live on her own she should be allowed to do so but since she was in AL it sounds like she may not be able to live alone. What you do is wait for grandma to fall (or some other emergency), get her to the ER, and then go from there. Gang up on her, include the nurses and the hospital social worker, the Dr., anyone you can find and get her back into AL and this time don't bring her home when she begins to complain. I know it sounds harsh but your grandma's woe-is-me, nobody loves me stuff is attention-seeking behavior and someone who needs attention all the time is very exhausting.
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Although I'm not a medical professional, I have read and been told by some who are that threats to die can be attention getters. I'm not saying that your GM may not feel that way, but from your post it appears as though she really does need a lot of attention - high maintenance is probably appropriate.

It sounds like GM is controlling and upsetting the whole family with needs for attention, despite good care from her daughter.

This is a tough situation and I don't really have any good suggestions except not take her calls when she's harrassing for attention. She'll continue to do this if it's effective, so somehow it has to be made clear to her that it's not.

Perhaps others will have better suggestions, but I just wanted to share that I think these are manipulative, controlling tactics and that's the level on which to address them.

Hope someone else has better advice than I do.
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