My parents (82) just moved in with us. My Mom's hearing is poor and my Dad's eyesight is poor due to macular degeneration. Mom's kitchen safety is terrible (licking the peanut butter off a knife & putting it back in the jar for more, using the same fork for raw eggs as getting butter or jelly from the container....... I'm fearful for all of us in the house yet I don't feel comfortable telling her she has to stay out of the kitchen. This is only the tip of the iceberg but its the most crucial to our health. She has constant temper tantrums if anyone disagrees with her opinion, slams doors, cabinets, microwave, etc. She interrupts all conversations (even when I'm on the phone to ask who I'm talking to and why is it taking so long) forcing me to end the call and call the person back later. She won't read her mail.... just wants to throw it away or slam it down in from of me to handle immediately. My boundaries are constantly being challenged. I believe she has all the early signs of Alz but I'm sure I can't being it up right now. She starts with a new doctor the 1st week of October and I wonder if its out of bounds for me to talk to the doctor before she goes in. Part of her problem is she drinks 8-10 cups of coffee a day. We've just moved back to the east coast after being out west for 30 years so this area is new to me also. I feel really lost and don't want to become so wrapped up in the 'caregiver" roll that I rot away.
I always give my sig other a bowl of pop corn so he wont' be digging in the pop corn bag, made it so hard for me to hear the TV will all that package crumbling noise :P
Licking the knife and putting it back into the peanut butter would say to me "this is now Ma's peanut butter." I would buy a separate jar and stash it for other-family use.
Handling it here has been pretty simple, since my mother's and my tastes differ on most things. I buy separate things for each of us. If I buy something like chips or nuts, I let her have them after I've seen she has eaten from them. If there is something I want for myself, I stash it in my room.
This works when it is one on one. I don't know how I would handle it if there was a whole family. That would be more difficult. I am probably being silly, but I don't like to eat after someone has handled the food.
What do you do when they want to run errands with you and you want the time alone?? Its very difficult to take her with me since I need to use a stool to get her in my car and with 3-4 errands that's a lot of stool in and out. She has peripheral neuropathy. I have acute pain issues with my hands from 3 carpal tunnel operations but more important I need the time alone sometimes and I find it hard to say no. I guess its my own fault - I have to learn to say No.
I don't think she has Alzheimer's but what is happening here is what I call "Queen Bee Syndrome". Ever notice there is only ONE queen bee? Women are highly territorial, instinctively and permanently. And the drones (male bees) stay out of the confrontation. If you are in her house, she is the queen bee. If you are both moved in to a new house, there is a battle for the title of queen bee. Personally, I firmly believe two adult women in one kitchen never works.
My sister tried helping mother stay in her own home and died suddenly. What happens to your mom and dad if they out live you? Your folks need to be in a facility where they are safe and not making you and your family ill.
We moved my husband's grandma from IL. to AZ. and it was the worst possible thing, we could have done. She did not last a week in a new environment. She had to be flown back to IL., where she was very happy at the NH. I think sometimes we just try too hard to help, and we cause more harm than anything.