I'm asking for a friend who had to transition a parent out of their home for their health and safety. How do they cope with the guilt when the parent is resentful. Can words help to ease the pain? Are there activities that would help the parent understand. Any advise or tips will be helpful.

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Nobody likes change except for wet babies & banks.
However, change is part of life.

I am an only child who had to step in to rescue my mother from her filthy pit of despair due to her dementia and a host of other problems, some mental, some medical.

I was the enemy for a long time. I was evil, bad, etc, etc, etc. I have been called ever obscene and ugly name under the sun. That is just really too bad.
It used to kill me, but not any more.

Mom is not herself. She is not competent. She doesn't know which end is up anymore. I have to do whatever is necessary to keep her safe, clean, and fed. This means she ended up in memory care and will probably never leave the building again.

It wasn't guilt that hurt me. It was the loss of any & all possibility of a repaired relationship. All the car trips and sights that would not be seen. The shows that would not be attended. The memories that would not be made.

I felt powerless, helpless, hopeless, exhausted, frustrated, angry as hades, and lots of other things, but never guilty. I had to move her and there was no other option available anymore. Guilt is for the people who have done something immoral or illegal. Taking care of mom is nothing to be guilty over.
I have a theory that we label this ball of horrible feelings guilt to keep it simple, but it is completely the opposite of a simple feeling.

I don't expect mom to like where she is. I don't expect her to be happy. I am not in control of either of those things. If she went to heaven, she'd criticize the gates for not being good enough and the clouds for not being fluffy. Some of this is her personality and some of it's dementia eroding her brain functions away.

You have to have a thick skin to get through this, and you start to learn what to take personally and what to just ignore. When I check on mom, she is clean, her hair is done, she's fed, medicated, washed, and has nothing in this world to complain about, but she does.

Your friend needs to deal with their feelings head on, come to understand what baggage to let go of, and learn to be strong. It takes time and it won't happen overnight, but it is possible. I wish them all the very best.
Helpful Answer (4)

I moved my parents out of their house this summer. It started with my mom's health issues and that she was in the hospital for a minor stroke.. I never really took them back home. They lived at my house for several weeks. My dad with dementia was accusing me of kidnapping him.. etc. It was the hardest thing I have ever done.

They are now living in a senior independent living apartment about a mile from my house. I think my mom enjoys being close to me and having help with my dad although I am sure she misses her home. My dad on the other hand could not and still cannot understand why he can't go home.

Some days he is fine living at the apartments.. but some days he is very resentful, moody, agitated and hard to be around.

The only thing I can say is to try to keep them busy... distract them. I really just live in the moment and try to make them happy in content for that moment.. its really all I can do. My dad always says he wants to "go home" .. but really I think he wants to go back in time to where he was able to live on his own without so much help.. and that is just impossible at this point.

Its hard for me.. as I am sure it is for you too... but there comes a point where you simply have no choice.
Helpful Answer (2)

This is the second time we have been through this, once out of the house, just recently to AL. Both times Mom was resentful, fought us the whole way. Anti anxiety drugs help at first, but people with dementia obsess and won't let things go. My mother badgered and complained for six years about her car. She drove the residents at IL crazy about it. Try not to feel guilty. The right thing to do is step in and make decisions when they can't. You become the parent so they will be well cared for.
Helpful Answer (3)

Moving a parent should be discussed with the MD who can prescribe anxiety meds temporarily. They actually move with less fuss into Assisted Living where they are surrounded by peers to vent their feelings and receive a good deal of empathy. Moving in with an adult child leads to conflict over who the "parent" is.
Helpful Answer (6)

Does your parent have dementia? If so, s/he may not recognize their impairment and reasoning doesnt work
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