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My MIL (alzheimers) is living with me now and I guess I would like some advice about visitors. She gets drop in visitors..........at least 3x a week. (including family) and so far I am expected to entertain these people. I appreciate their stopping by but I have less and less privacy now. I have asked for advance notice so that I can leave while they are here but that doesn't go over very well. They are here to visit - not to care-take. So I get responses such as "we're only staying for a few minutes". Then they proceed to stay for 3 hours. Since my MIL is so repetitive and difficult to talk to .............they end up talking TO ME!!!!! I don't want company. I just want a bit of "me time" but I have less and less privacy these days. Any suggestions? I don't want to get the family or friends angry at me but they really can't comprehend what I do in a day. (I am a widow and I work full time from my office at home in order to support us as my MIL came to me carrying lots of debt).

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Ismiami said "whatever you decide is right." That's the essence of this. You work full time and this, being the age of computers, you work from home. Nearly any of us who are caregivers have noticed that people don't have a clue to how much work we do.

The same is true for those who work from a home office. You're home, aren't you? Thus, they think you must be free to entertain at the ring of the doorbell. Nothing could be further from the truth. Marry the two jobs - being a caregiver and being self-employed or working from a remote office at home - and you have double the reason to ask for proper notice.

I do think that if you are firm enough, people will do one of two things. They will stop visiting or they will contribute. They are likely good people who want to help out but are uncomfortable trying to visit with your mother-in-law who just repeats herself. Therefore, they expect you to be the "middle person" and help them along. Only you can change this mindset.

It is good for your mother-in-law to have company, but it's not right to put the time burden on you. Try calling the visitors at home and relating to how much their visits mean to your mother-in-law. Then, suggest ways that they can more comfortably visit with her and let you have some time off. Make suggestions about how to visit with your mother-in-law - perhaps by watching an old movie together or looking at photo albums. Try to help them out by saying that you’ll contribute the movie or make sure photo albums are handy. I think many of these people believe they are doing something good by visiting and they really don’t understand what they are doing to you. Honesty is the only way to get what you need. Be kind but firm in that you intend to use the time they contribute (thank them for this profusely) to have a break yourself.

This type of thing is likely out of your comfort zone. I’ve had to do things that are out of my comfort zone for similar reasons. You need to take care of yourself, and if some of the visitors drop out, then that’s how it is.
Good luck,
Carol
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Tell them where the kitchen is and go back to your office. Ask them to stay with her while you go out for 3 hours. You don't have to stay in the room and entertain them, but for some reason you have forced yourself to do that. Try not to hover and smother, get out and breathe!!!
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I do not like drop by visitors and I work from home so I can relate.
I agree with PS, lead them in to wherever mom is, room, living room etc.. And excuse tell them how happy you are, that she really appreciates the visit, and excuse yourself to get back to work or run whatever errand you need.
They may be a pain to put up with, but if they break the monotony for mom, that may actually be helpful to you.

You are a very kind person as a widow to be taking care of your MIL, so whatever you decide is right.
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I feel for you. I had that problem when I first started care giving. I do just what the others suggested. I don't leave the house, but I excuse my self to "give them privacy" and tell them I'll be in my room, here's the bell, ring if you need me. I will offer bevs and snacks before I go, but I ONLY come down when the bell rings. I use the time as a scrabble respite. : )
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Thank you all. I thought it was "just me" who hated drop ins. Don't get me wrong..............I like her to get visitors.................but I want them to visit HER not ME. lol
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I agree with all the other suggestions. my only comment is that you say your MIL came to you with lots of debt. You should not be responsible for any of that debt. your work hours are just that nine to five like everyone else. Stick to your guns.
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Marialake, I am so glad that you posted this. Think what the elderly go through when the visitor or relatives are from out of town and plan on staying a week. This happened over and over at my Mother's. That is why people need to wait until they are asked, to come over. Or at least call and inquire, if it is a good day. Heck, if they can't call and let you know, post a sign at the door. I can't believe people are interrupting your routine, like that.
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