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I am sole caregiver need your advice. I have no personal life anymore since caring for mom. And when I am able to entertain or go visit I have to take mom with me and that's not enjoying myself. I no longer work and have no one to really help me, so I just want to be able to get her tired out so the remainder of the evening belongs to me. She goes to ADH 2 days a weeks but I need more. She has begun to look or follow me from room to room in the house and I feel smothered. I take her out as often as I can, but she acts like she is so tired as soon as we get out the car, walk through the a store or visit someone. Its like I don't know what to do to get her satisfied.
I really want to place her in ALF but her income will not cover her stay and I cant afford to pay the difference.

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For 'alone ' activities, you might try large piece puzzles and the sorting games --A deck of cards can be sorted into suits, colors, etc. Let her fold some laundry -- towels are especially easy. Since dementia patients truly need 24 hour care, I'd urge you bring in more help. 'Companion' care can come from a 'stay at home Mom while her children are in school. It can come from a 'senior neighbor' who needs a little extra money. They can play cards or do puzzles with her. If she is steady, they can take her for a walk close by your home. With instruction, they can help her do 'chair exercises' to keep everything moving. Hope this helps.
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One was your father or mother in active war can they get VA benefits for in home care or day care ? Have you talked to a Certified Elder Law Attorney in your area http://www.nelf.org/ ? They can probably help you. Otherwise call the Agency on Aging to see if they have any suggestions. There is help, you just have to dig to get it.
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PBS is very good, they have music and movies from her era. Music is the one thing they never forget. Mom at 86 likes musicals like South Pacific, Sound of Music, anything Big Band.
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