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My 85 year old Granny has been in hospice care since May 2018 after she was diagnosed with colon cancer. She pretty much doesn't eat anything and is down to 69 pounds, she may eat a couple of junior mints or some candy, but she won't eat any food. She just asked me yesterday for beer, do you think the hospice nurses will allow her to have beer? My concern is the alcohol interacting with her medications, but the beer would provide her with needed calories.


Has anyone else experienced this? Did you get the their requested beer/alcohol?

I would give her a beer, what is the worst that could happen? It's happening now anyway.

Im sorry that you and your family are having to watch your g'ma waste away.

May God grant you peace on this journey.

Hugs!
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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My mom was a heavy wine drinker and when she got dimentia we started buying her alcohol free wine and she did not know the difference. Every now and then I would give her the real stuff. I agree, they should do whatever they want at that stage in the game. Whatever makes them happy! If I could go back and do moms end of life hospice care again I would have bought her chinese take out every night, expensive wine and let her stay up all night watching TV:) I wish I had not sweated the small stuff....
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Reply to lovemymomma
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I cannot think of any reason to refuse your grandmother anything (legal) that pleases her heart. If she fancies a beer, then let her have it. If she fancies a couple, come to that. These are the last days of her life. She is not expected to recover. Whatever contributes to her own sense of wellbeing must be accommodated as far as possible.

I don't suppose the manufacturers of the medications would recommend that they be taken with alcohol, but if there is a serious interaction to worry about - and yes do check because the last thing you want to do is make her feel worse - then I'd query what good the medication is doing and see if you can't change that.

One caution, though. Don't be disappointed if, once you've brought the beer, nicely chilled, opened it with a flourish, and ceremoniously poured it into a slim glass for your grandmother, she doesn't after all drink it, let alone enjoy it. It may just be the idea that she liked and the reality doesn't match her memory of past pleasures. Should that happen, try other little treats - ask around the family about favourite dishes or brands of chocolate they remember.
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Yes. At this stage of her life, she should have anything she wants.
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Reply to Caregiverhelp11
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MY MIL was used to her afternoon cocktail and asked about it at every visit. She was on palliative hospice care, so she was only taking comfort medications.
After phoning the hospice nurse and discussing it, we visited MIL with the needed supplies. It was ten in the morning.
MIL asked if she could finally have her drink. Although my wife initially disagreed (it was morning), she relented. I fixed MIL her bourbon and water and it made her very happy. It reminded her of better times with her husband.
For a couple of weeks after that I stopped every afternoon for her cocktail hour. When the staff got used to the idea I started leaving airplane bottles with the proper amount. We asked hospice to add it to the care plan so the staff could assist.
I supplied the airplane bottles, and started watering down the bourbon somewhat. I do not think she ever caught on. It was more the idea of keeping her routine.
I did not do this for my father when he was in hospice, but I probably should have. He talked about it and it would have made him happier. Daily would not have worked for him as he was a fall risk, but periodically could have been arranged. I think he would have been happier as drinking had been a big part of his life. With him I did not really understand that palliative care is for comfort, not healing.
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Reply to enderby
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robinr Sep 28, 2018
I hope you don't feel badly about not doing it for your dad.  We're all on a journey as they like to call it, and the best we can do is learn from the past and move forward incorporating that knowledge to make it better for someone else...and you did, for your mother in law, and who knows how many people you have educated here...
(9)
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Give Granny whatever she wants. My friend wanted a steak. I ground up a cooked roast and fed him puree. He Loved it. The flavor was what he missed. Give her the beer. Slowly. I will ask for a Gin and tonic
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Reply to Oregongirl
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Yes, usually they can have what they want, They are dying.
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Reply to JumpJet
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She can have anything she wants. The only consideration would be if it would cause an uncomfortable side effect when mixed with the palliative medications she's probably receiving. That should be discussed with the hospice staff.
I agree with others that she may just want the taste of beer and probably won't drink much of it.
Ceasing to eat or drink is part of the natural process of dying. She doesn't need calories. It can be the hardest thing to accept for loved ones. It helped me to keep in mind that, when a dying person eats in order to make their family members feel better, it actually makes them feel worse.
It's time for everyone to follow your grandmother's lead. She's in charge for this journey. She's not a 'patient' anymore.
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Reply to IsntEasy
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drooney Sep 28, 2018
My SIL was on Hospice. She asked for "a yard of ale". She was happy to see the tall glass of ale we provided. She just sipped some and said "thank you , so much"! That was it for her, didn't want any more. Think it was just the thought not the actual beverage. Usually she was more of a martini drinker, but never asked for that!. Can't see how any alcohol can be a really big problem for a terminally ill person.
(7)
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Hospice. End of life. Die happy I say!!!
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Reply to Cmthatcher
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My dad was on hospice at home. Hospice said to give him anything he asked for. He asked for beer so we gave him beer. Anything that brings comfort is good.
God be with you.
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Reply to InMyShoes
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