Since my wife became housebound about two years ago, she will only go out to see doctors when I insist, and generally following a serious threat to go nowhere and see no one. She has osteoporosis and dementia. We have seen appropriate medical doctors. We live well outside the nearby towns. All medical authorities have stated that her condition will not get any better.

Jimwhidd: Imho, it is IMPERATIVE that you tell your wife you cannot do it all without help. You must be the advocate for that to happen, unfortunately.
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Reply to Llamalover47

Just arrange for someone to come to the house and warn them she may not be too receptive. If she complains to you, tell her this person is there to help you, not her. Because that is the truth - you need some help to help her. Start with 1-2 days a week and then increase as needed. She will become used to having someone come in. -- As a note, with the dementia, sometimes the patient sees others as flirting.
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Reply to my2cents

You probably can't convince her, because you've created a situation where she really only feels safe with you. That is not fair to YOU. As the caregiver you have to take care of yourself, and you decide what is in her best interest.

What will work best for YOU? I assume you're not used to thinking about yourself first, but this is where you are and it is what is needed. In order for you to help her, help yourself. Whatever you need to do to take care of both of you -- just do it. Stop asking her for permission. It is not needed. I'm sure you have her best interests at heart.

And that is correct, the situation will worsen. Dementia does not get better. It gets worse. Osteoporosis may stall at some point but not dementia.
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Reply to Rabanette

On a good day, speak with her about it. Let her know that she needs more help and it isn't right depending on everyone else when they all have their own families and life to live.
It's fine to have family and friends come to visit you but it really isn't nice to have them work for you. Let her know that you too are tired and need the help.
If she doesn't agree, hire help any way and once they arrive. Leave the house and let them do their job.
You should start out a few hours a day a few days a week and increase the time if needed.
I would also have cameras installed so you can see what's going on any time 24 7.
My Dad with dementia has 24 hr Caregivers and I had Nest Cameras installed and that relived so much to be able to check on my Dad using my lap top or cell phone any time.

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Reply to bevthegreat

Hi Jimwhidd,
I had the same issue, my hubby with FTD dementia as he never thought he needed any help. So when I hired outside help, I told him his doctors sent the nurses to our home because they wanted to make sure I was doing everything to take great care of him!! When I told him that he actually smiled and seemed relieved, as many times he looked at me as the bad guy, though thats just my hunch. Whatever the reason I went with whatever worked. So when the time came for hospice, I told him the same thing. When the nurses came to qualify him for hospice, “ they were there to monitor his care”. I never used the word hospice to him. When the hospice bed arrived, I told him “his doctor thought he’d be much more comfortable in it where we could set him up and down than just laying on our sofa”. This was all true, I just framed it as something his team of doctors were doing for us! One real important element I learned was when these things were being done was to make sure my own demeanor was happy, surprised and grateful that his doctors were taking such good care of him. I say this because my hubby would mirror whatever demeanor I displayed. If I had shown that I was emotional and teary eyed when the hospital bed arrived, he would have been the same way. This was a very hard skill for me to learn to use, but once I got it, it made our lives so much better. I stopped the begging and trying to reason with him. I did what I would have wanted someone to do for me without any discussion of it. When the PA, nurse, adult depends or whatever it might be, and especially when the hospital bed arrived, I acted surprised, grateful and just made over it and said things like, “ “wow, I can’t believe how Dr K is making sure we have everything you need!” “Isnt this great?” And he would agree!! It wont feel normal to handle it this way at first, but there is nothing normal about dementia and having a peaceful home while you maneuver this journey requires you to seek strategies that work for the patient. Stay strong, this is not an easy thing! Blessings!!
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Reply to NeesaLee

I also think if you hire someone, it should be a MALE nurse or attendant, or she might get jealous if you hire someone younger than she is and pretty.
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Reply to karenchaya
Rabanette Oct 18, 2021
These people are at least 80 years old. I realize that elders get jealous, but do you honestly think that this is an issue?
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Start a notebook/scrapbook for her where you and she discuss something she DID do that she didn't think she could every day. Even if it is just going to the bathroom, or sleeping even a little in bed. Let her give herself happy face stars, etc. IN OTHER WORDS, help her focus on the positive. EXPRESS to her that you WANT her to be as independent as possible and it will be easier if YOU can HIRE some help around the house; otherwise, the alternative is she might have to go into a home where she is cared for by professionals. Ask what SHE wants to do with the next decade of her life. Impress upon her that she might be able to live a couple or a few more decades, and how does she want her life to look like. Discussions!!!!!!!
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Reply to karenchaya
NeesaLee Oct 18, 2021
Hi Karenchya,
If his wife was simply bed ridden, your suggestions might be a great tool. However, I respectfully share with you that the notebook and scrapbooking and talk of her future possibilities as a motivator are way too cognitive for one with dementia. My husband could never have followed or retained the things you are suggesting….. just sayin
Phrasing this kind of help as "personal assistant" is exactly the same JOB, but has a more dignified sound to it.

I was always referred to as a "PA" and I did not wear the company's shirt with the logo on it--my client did not like it and neither did I!

It took time to make that learning curve, but I was always made her aware that I was there for HER, which she loved.

We're going to have to get help for mother, she is falling a lot and cannot be left alone. That makes it so the family (YB's) can never go anywhere without leaving someone behind.

I have to take my own advice--mom's going to hate it.
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Reply to Midkid58

My hubby has dementia, and the caregiver i hired came in to help me with him as I was in a wheelchair and couldn't do very much. He got accustomed to her helping him dress, toilet, fixing meals, etc. So much so that on weekends when she doesn't come, he spends most of the day sleeping.
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Reply to Maple3044

My MIL is not accepting of outside help. How we get around that is we tell her the help is for ME, not her (even though everything the PSW does is for her). Once she accepted that they were they to help me, things went a lot smoother.
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Reply to Lizbitty

Your profile says you live in a very rural area and your daughter and son-in-law live next door (which is good to know, even if they aren't that involved).

I don't think you need to get your wife's acceptance or approval to hire in-home help. You can tell her they're there for you, not her. She will need some time to adjust to the right person who is patient, soft-spoken and knowledgeable about how to engage someone with dementia. Even if this person is just sitting in the next or same room as your wife so you can slip out and get a break, this is better than nothing, You need to take care of you, no matter what she wants. Blessings!
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Reply to Geaton777

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