Transport to a church, bingo, the lake, or to hear music? He is starting to pester folks at the grocery store etc… I can’t convey to him he won’t be independent for long without a home routine. But I need to come up with senior activities & companionship when he inevitably runs-off my siblings and I with mean behavior. Respite care seems hard to find.

Look into Adult Day Care Centers. They work as a child day care. They come for the day...not overnight! We call our facility a Senior Club, so it sounds friendly to them. They'll give you breakfast, lunch and a snack before you return home. At least our Adult Day Care provides this. Also, they'll have activities such as an exercise program, bingo, cards, arts, crafts, discuss current events, bible study, etc. This will keep your dad preoccupied during the day. If there's anything he really likes to do mention it to the director and I'm sure they will include that activity for him. Check with the Department on Aging in your state for further information. Good Luck!

Mary Gable
Among Friends Adult Day Care
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to immare

If he is "nasty", it is time to read the riot act and set boundaries and consequences.....this cannot and will not be tolerated no matter what or why. If it persists, then you have to let him know, he will be on his own - you will NOT help if he does these things. Ask your local office on aging about senior groups and other activities or adult day care places. And if nothing works, you decide if you want to handle it all and not have a life or if you want to place him so you have some peace and he is cared for.
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Reply to Riley2166
WyldUnknown Jul 13, 2021
"Nasty" is sometimes a phase of dementia. It's a reaction to the loss of control of their lives. Fear of changes they sense. I don't know many children who would turn their backs on their parents at the start of losing their independence. (It seems from the post this is a recent issue.) And, at least here in WA state, you can not "place" someone without consent. He's currently living independently...He has this thing we call "rights" and until the courts remove those rights, you can't (shouldn't) force someone into a facility.
Imho, since you state in your profile that your father has Alzheimer's, perhaps he should NOT be venturing out on his own.
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Reply to Llamalover47

Check with Senior Services and with Churches and see what is offered for Seniors.

Go with your Dad the 1st couple times and help him get acquainted and make a friend and he'll be more willing to go.

If he has any friends, invite them over for a bingo, card, whatever they seem to like.
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Reply to bevthegreat

You say he is independent, so that means he is cognitively functional. Did he have any particular interest or hobby? Wonder if you can get him interested in gardening? Buy a few pots and seed packets or make a garden patch and plant some veggies and/or flowers. If he can interested this can keep him busy for hours. Puzzles are good, start with simple ones to see if there is an interest there. Music - I don't know any senior who doesn't like to hear the music of his times. Buy him an Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant to help him access info, music and even books.
Call your local religious house of worship to see what outreach activities they offer or if they know someone who is looking for work as a caretaker/companion. Try local colleges to see what Adult Education courses they offer that may be of interest. Especially research your neighborhood to see if there is a nearby Senior Center that offer activities, lectures, trips- they're a wonderful resource for respite care too.
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Reply to NYCmama

Please consider that his "meanness" may have roots in anxiety. He may not understand something or feel threatened, so he feels anxious. The anxiety triggers that adrenaline rush that creates the "fight-or-flight" feeling and he chooses to fight since he is not as good at problem-solving. He probably gets agitated and says mean things. Some people have been known to get violent in their anxiety.

1 - Your dad will probably do better is he has a consistent routine. The routine, once established, creates a feeling of security. Unfortunately, this will require having somebody (or better yet, a team of somebodies) that create and follow the routine. All those home activities to busy himself with should be part of his routine. An adult day program, usually found in a nursing home or personal care home, may be helpful.

2 - Consider talking to his doctor about medications that can help. Ideally, your dad should be evaluated by a neurologist to evaluate type of dementia and its stage. Alzheimer's type dementia (the most common) and Parkinson's disease can be managed with medication in the early stages. Anxiety can be evaluated and treated by the family doctor or a geriatric psychiatrist. I am thinking that a mild anti-anxiety medication may calm his surly behavior.
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Reply to Taarna

Life is certainly a challenge, both for you and your dad. All dementias are progressive; and you have some good advice here.
A local franchise named "Home Instead: Senior Care" might be able to help with at home assistance for which you have to pay a reasonable hourly fee. Check if there is one in your local area.

A good list of activities is in James R. Dowling, "Keeping Busy: A Handbook of Activities for Persons with Dementia." See which ones might interest your dad.

Every day is different. Your dad, like many others with many forms of dementia, may become a time traveller--going back into the past. You will then need to figure out where he is and come beside him. Sometimes this is called "therapeutic lying" but this is not a good term. Coming beside the person and acknowledging their feelings and hopes and fears is what you need to do.

Don't try to do all this on your own. You'll burn out. Get help--paid or unpaid, friends or family.

Prayers and hope for a challenging future
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to BritishCarer

Your profile lists dementia/alz as an issue, so I would be very careful about wanting to send him out and about on his own, since you cannot be sure when his memory or filters will fail in public.

My experience with senior bus/transport services (even county-funded ones) is that they make you will out a liability form because they do NOT want to be responsible for someone who is vulnerable or impaired. I don't blame them. Even Uber. It would be unethical to send out an unaccompanied LO who has even mild impairment.

I suggest you contact an agency for a male companion aid. This person can drive him around, go with him to events, play cards/board games and generally shoot the wind. Also can do light housekeeping and meal prep. We had such a person fro my 2 elderly aunts for 6 years. She was wonderful but we recently had to "upgrade" to an aid who was qualified to do transfers, walk with someone who is a fall risk, give showers and dispense meds.

You can privately hire a companion but an agency does all the proper tax and reporting requirements and does background checks. They also will send a sub when your person is sick or on vacation.

Or, there is adult memory day care places. Also call around to churches which may have adult day care for a much lower cost.

As far as convincing him he's not as independent as he would like to think, this is probably the #1 problem for adult children of aging LOs. In my case I asked my aunt if she could ditch a task or 2 that she really disliked, what would it be. When she told me I said I could help make that happen for her. All you need is a foot in the door. Once your dad sees that he can get a ride to anywhere, he may warm up. You don't have to start with an aid for the full day or every day, start small and slow and work up to it. You also need to find the right person to fit this role (we did and it's worth the effort). Mean behavior is part of dementia and an experienced aid will be trained for it and not surprised at all by it. Wishing success in working out a solution for your family and peace in your heart that you are doing your best.
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Reply to Geaton777

Call your County Office of Aging.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to JoAnn29

Is there a local senior center with good services, including to the grocery store?

Can any of the church folks assist with transportation, by taking turns picking him up and returning home?  

He can listen to music at home, but there are good concerts.  In our area, one particular top notch group provides free concerts and rotates between smaller, more progressive communities.    He would have to find someone to take him, but if he finds free concerts, he could compensate the driver for gas.

That raises another question.  Does he have funds for the various activities you suggest?
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to GardenArtist

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