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My Mom is 90 years old and had been living with her male companion for 38 years. For about the last 5 years, she has been declining mentally and physically as far as balance, hygiene, etc. She also had surgery recently for a rectal prolapse and she had already been incontinent for a while and remains so. She was put on an antidepressant in the nursing home, fed well, bathed, and generally cared for well. She looks much better and as long as she is on level ground, she can walk a certain distance. She also seems somewhat better mentally. My fear is that if I remove her from there, she may fall in my home or may worsen back to her previous condition, and I don't think I am physically able to help her in and out of the shower or to be able to help her if she falls as I am 65 years old and have spinal arthritis and general old age stiffness and aches and pains. I have a lot of stairs outside leading up to the front door and stairs in the house. But I am feeling guilty leaving her in the home because she looks and sounds more alert than a lot of the other residents. She is also pending Medicaid and if I remove her, that will halt that process and it may be difficult to get her approved later. Any opinions? My stomach churns every day wondering if I'm doing the right thing.

I feel your pain as its my pain too, even more, because my mom was living previously in my house for 13 years. But she is also 90 and having some health conditions as unable to eat solid food and not believing in that, she driven herself to the hospital with aspiration pneumonia, we almost lost her. then she was in rehab and nursing home. her memory is declining fast and if I ll bring her home back, she ll be in the same condition quick as she does not believe that she can eat solid food although in NH she is eating puree as many others around her eating puree too. But I am in guilt every day and hour visiting her there because I also see that if not her inability to eat solid food, she can continue to live in my house with some aid, but being stubborn, she will not listen....so yes, guilt...BUT as many people saying to you and to me eventually, we should do what we can do, being there for them, advocate and understand the reality....But its hard, so mu hugs to you, I always wish to cry on someone shoulders too...
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Reply to poetry21
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Thank you all for your replies and support. I appreciate it so much. I'm sure I will have to justify this in my mind over and over again, but I'm hoping that time will make it a little easier.
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Reply to singlechild1954
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I meant sage posters although their opinions should also be considered safe.
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Reply to Riverdale
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Yes keep her there. My mother's general physical and health conditions improved greatly once she entered AL. Before that I couldn't stand to go to her apartment or use her bathroom. She had a terrible cleaning women who took advantage of her. She also let odd friends stay with her. It was all a huge mess. Her clothing was never washed. I think you have answered your own questions by mentioning your health conditions. There is still plenty to take care of once a parent is in a facility. You truly will be doing both of you a huge favor and as guilt has been mentioned here before by very safe posters you have no reason to feel guilty as you have not done anything wrong. Neglecting both of your health issues will only bring more suffering. I wish you well with this.
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Reply to Riverdale
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Sometimes we just have to accept the fact that there are no perfect solutions. Placing my mom in a nursing home was one of the hardest things I've ever done and all the little things that are involved in institutional life (and even the best facility is still an institution) still cause me to feel grief, but I know that it was the only realistic alternative. Unless she is blessed with a swift, unexpected death she will continue to deteriorate beyond your capability to care for her, when you will once again face the heartbreaking need to place her into care. Visit often, be her advocate and daughter, not her hands on caregiver.
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Reply to cwillie
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Feelings of guilt when we place a loved one in a facility are very common. Just read through some of the other posts on this forum. Another poster says that we should only feel guilty if we’ve done something wrong. You have done nothing wrong. To help overcome those feelings, we need to put our emotions aside and take an honest look at our situation. In your case, Mom is improving in her facility. Whatever time she has left, she will be cared for by three shifts of skilled staff, 24/7. She will be served a balanced (if not gourmet) diet, she will receive help with her personal needs, her medications and medical needs, and she will be surpervised so she doesn’t fall. There is a trained staff to help her transfer should she need it. If she is feeling better, more alert and even attempting to walk, be happy for her and know that you made the right decision. There is a common misconception that a person needs to be totally and completely helpless when they go to a facility. They should be bedridden and feeble. Not true! People don’t go to hospitals just to die anymore, either as was a common misconception. That’s an archaic way of thinking. When I placed my own mother, she was in her early 90’s. She was ambulatory and fairly communicative. She took care of her own personal needs and even made her bed and picked up her room each day. She was there because I saw the signs of dementia. Like you, I have health issues as well. At that time, our home was not accessible for her. In addition, my husband’s health was not good and I am his full time caregiver. And bottom line, my mother was difficult. I could not have mentally withstood caring for her for very long.

Dont talk yourself into bringing her home. What would that prove? You might feel better, but I can almost guarantee you she won’t.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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Your mom's overall health improved after she was placed in a nursing home. That's because she had 3 shifts of nurses to take care of her. It's not a coincidence that she improved.

You did the right thing. Your mom is healthier and probably happier where she is. This is not to suggest that you can't take care of her but you can't provide the care of a team of nurses day after day. Nobody can provide that kind of care on their own.

You did the right thing by your mom. Now you can enjoy each other and have fun visits together.
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Reply to Eyerishlass
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I would keep her in the nursing facility. Sounds like best for her and best for you.
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Reply to Segoline
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