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I don't think so about the meals. I am pro cooking for the elderly, think if we provide them with nutritious meals that only need to be microwaved they will eat much better. I have also done things like make a huge omelet and could be cut for 3 meals. Plates of scrambled eggs and bacon, etc. my mom ate extremely well and her doctor, after looking at the bloodwork, told me her nutrition was a little low. She explained to me that if you don't use the protein by moving around you lose it. We then made sure that mom drank ensure each day, between meals not in place of. I was ok with 2 good meals a day. You are right about waiting on mom hand and foot. I am going through that now with my sons and my dad. Things may not always go as the best we hope, but a happy medium is good. Don't forget to add some fruit and treats with the meals.
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Good to hear
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Patrice2oz: Thank you. Issue with MIL is resolved, for the most part. She went home a week ago, and is doing well. I think her being at my house and being waited on hand and foot was not good for her, or for my family. My family and my sister in law make her meals and take them to her. I don't know if this is still enabling her, but as long as she is out of our house, I can live with losing a few tuperware tubs!!! Chris
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We would involve her in our life our daily routines we say hey mom we need to go to the store come on let's go or mom we going to wash car you wanna help come on let's go hey mom we just going for a ride let's go and she went she use to love going for trips in our big semi truck my hubby n I would help her into it she wave at people big smile suggest things to her that she can relate too like my mom in law couldn't hear but my hubby would play music loud n dance with his mom I have a short vid of her n him dancing I miss that .cooking was another thing she taught me a lot about so I would ask her if I was doing it right though she didn't use the stove anymore .
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I have asked the primary doctor to set up in home physical therapy for both my parents many times. This way I can find out if she couldn't or WOULDNT get up for me. Did make a difference. I set it up, got them dressed for the day and said the doc ordered therapy for them and it therapist was coming this morning. After i gave all info , medical history, etc. made sure they didn't fib about what movement they were doing, I left the room and went downstairs to do wash so I was not around. Did not come back up till it was over . Did a lot of praising for what they told me then did. Other times I have taken my dad for outpatient therapy . We stopped for winter months and will start again soon dince weather is getting nicer. Like I said sometimes it was hard for me to tell if they couldn't or wouldn't get up. Good luck
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Thank you, JessieBelle and freqflyer.
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ChrisPerdue1961, sounds like your Mom-in-law [who is only 76 years old per your profile] wants your wife to be able to quit work and stay home with her all day long..... to become Julie McCoy, her own personal cruise director.

Whenever Mom-in-law makes those cracks about women not needing to work outside of the home, just tell her it's a different world out there today, in fact maybe it is time for Mom herself to look for work. One company where I worked had receptionists who were in their 70's and early 80's. Bet that might make Mom-in-law think twice about what she says :)
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Chris, don't take your MIL's words to heart. My mother does the same thing to me about my job. I work from home and business is good sometimes, bad others. My mother is never encouraging, since to her working from home is not really working. What I figured with my mother is that she needs to feel bad about someone else to make her feel better about herself. It still stings when she says belittling things, but I know how hard I work each day taking care of her while trying to pay my own bills. I have a feeling it is the same for you, so be proud of yourself. Try not to take you MIL's words to heart. You give her the opportunity to stay at home, which probably saves a whole lot of money. (Money saved is money earned.)
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To continue my MIL saga, it seems whatever I suggest (let's go to the bingo hall, get your hair cut, walk around for 2 minutes) it is met with "No, I don't feel like it right now. Maybe later.". She is also starting to berate me about work (I do architectural drafting from home, and it has been slow for the past week), and she mentions to my wife that it is too bad she has to work, and if I made a better living, my wife would not have to work, since women shouldn't have to work in the first place. Sorry for running on. I am just getting more frustrated by the hour. Don't know how long I can keep this up.
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I am going through a similar situation, my MIL lives with us and is chair /bed bound since she got out of the hospital with pneumonia. I am very concerned that she will get much sicker if she doesn't try to get up and move. She only gets out of her chair about 3x a day to use the bathroom and we are wheeling her in and out. She gets short of breath from getting up from the chair. A few weeks ago she was walking with a cane and now, not at all. How can I encourage her to get up and get stronger without being mean? I am sure all this sitting is not good for her lungs or muscles.
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My Mother does the same thing so I would like to follow this question. All answers above are good.
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Chris, put things out of reach so that your mom-in-law will have to move about to get what she needs.

Or try reverse psychology on her.... like if you think she would be able to dust, tell her "how I would like to have you help me dust, but I know you can't".... use something you know she liked doing in the past.... maybe after time she will want to prove the family wrong and actually help around the house.

As for the Cardiologist, is she taking blood pressure pills? Those pills can throw you for a loop energy wise. Tell Mom-in-law not to cancel the appointment as you want to see if the doctor could adjust her pills. I know by adjusting my pills to 1 and 1/2 instead of 2 pills made a big difference in my energy level.
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Thank you for the response. My MIL has been on anti depressants for the past 40 years or so. I just showed my wife your answer, and she was especially impressed with the "use it or lose it", a statement that I have been saying to my MIL since she has been with us. She feels that her heart and leg strength is going to just come back to her. She also wants to cancel her appointment with her cardiologist this Wednesday, because she wants to be stronger before she sees him, even though she moves very little during an average day. Thanks again. Chris P
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The only solution I've been able to find with my mother is to not do things for her that I know she can do for herself. My mother would sit in her chair all day long and have me bring things to her. I'm sure other people would think me mean when she asks me to bring her some water. I tell her to get up and get it herself. The only times my mother gets up is to go to the bathroom or the kitchen. I don't want to take those opportunities for movement from her. I've tried to encourage her to go outside to walk, but there are always excuses. I've given up on that. She keeps saying that she does go out to walk when it's warm. She doesn't believe me when I say she hasn't been out in two years now. Time slips by fast in her mind.

I don't know if there is a way we can make them want to get up and walk, but we can make sure not to enable them by doing things for them. I wondered with your MIL if she may also have some depression. It happens sometimes when people lose trust in their own body as they age. A psychiatrist or another doctor may be able to help her if there is depression.

When it comes to the legs, the "use it or lose it" is so true. A person who doesn't walk will soon not be able to. The legs get so weak.
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