How do I get my mom to try day services / respite care?

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My mom has Alzheimer's and has a home helper every morning from 9 to noon. She has the opportunity to go to a center with adult day services. They also provide respite care. Both services are included in a fee that we already pay for her care.


We (mom, brother and I) toured the center last Friday. Yesterday we asked her if she would like to try going. She refuses. At first she seemed to think that we wanted her to move there. When we explained that it was just for a few hours during the day, she still refused. She got very upset (was crying) and eventually told us that she doesn't like the other patients there.


We think the interaction will help Mom deal with her depression. Her social worker and nurse agree.


Howe do I convince her to give it a try?

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I had the same problem with my mom, and told her that she would be volunteering to help. We made it sound like fun for her, we also talked to the center and they worked with us on it.
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We have participants who are coming "to work" or to "volunteer" which gives them purpose to leave their homes. Some come as part of a "club". You have to find out what activity will motivate your loved one sufficiently to leave the home, and make sure he/she feels useful and involved. Once a participant comes to the center, we have a big brother/sister guide and group activities to help acclimate the newbie.
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My brother and I talked to my mom yesterday about going to the respite for the weekend when he is out of town. She agreed - very reluctantly. Said she would "give it a try." I hope she likes it or I don't know that I'll ever get her to agree to go to the day services.
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My Mom is on a waiting list for our local "daycare" center. We tried going to the Sr. Citizen's group but she wanted no part of it. I am hoping that if we bring her to the daycare and just keep persisting she'll acclimate to it. She loves to visit people, but she never wants to stay in one place for long. I am planning on making this my next few months mission. The people I have spoken to says that it takes weeks to a month before most people get over their dislike of attending the center. Hope this is the case.
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I talked to Mom's social worker yesterday. She also encouraged me to just keep talking about it. I told my mom yesterday that Laura (social worker) had called and asked how she liked the tour. Mom didn't even comment - just looked at me.

This same center has respite care, and we had wanted mom to go later this month. My brother is going to MI for the weekend and it would be the first time I can be alone in the house in over a year (I lived alone before mom and bro moved in last year and I really miss having that time to myself in my own house). We went ahead and reserved a spot for her in the respite for that weekend. We're hoping it might be easier for her to try a weekend when there are only 8 other people there than start during the week when it is so busy. Now we just have to get her to agree to go!!
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I agree with melmil...if I can "plant the seed" of a suggestion several days before...suddenly it becomes Mom's idea and all is well.
Thank you for the great suggestions
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I totally understand what you mean about adapting. It was a challenge for our family. I don't work, but I do live 4 hrs away from my parents. When my mom was alive, she took take of a lot for my dad, a stroke victim, they were very independent. However, she passed away last summer and we have had to figure a lot out about my dad and how my mom cared for him - she did it almost effortlessly it seemed, we just took for granted that he could stuff... wierd. We never realized what she went through and she never complained. Last summer, I stayed with him and my mom for the summer with my kids. I spent time with them, and it was during this time that I got my dad to visit the center. It was good for my mom who was very ill, it was good for my dad who needed a break too. It wasn't easy. One thing I found out last summer - if you ask for help, someone will help you. Maybe the social worker can talk to you about transportation for your mom if it is available. My dad's center is 5 miles away, and he takes the bus to the center 2 times a week. Even though he lives alone, we have family members rotating and staying with him 3-4 weeks out of the month. We get him to the center not just because someone might need a break, but because he needs a break from us too. We really tried to reinforce this point above all because it put the ball in his court where it needed to be. The centers workers might be ble to help you out as well like they did with my dad. It is amazing what a few visits can do to help someone understand the difference between a worker being a friend or a worker being just another watchdog. Hope this helps,
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melmil - thanks for the suggestions! Unfortunately, I work full time. My brother is home with Mom in the afternoons, but the center isn't really close to us (15 min drive) so "stopping by" would be hard. However, I'll keep in mind what you did and see what we can adapt to our situation. I have contacted mom's social worker - she works there and recommended it. I'm hoping that if she tells mom it would be a good idea that mom might listen to her. At least to give it a try!
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Thanks, Bobbie, genius I am not! But I do love my dad, and I know he loves me, he lets me care for him after all! I just know my dad is up for change if I am, he is hip to it if I am - but only AFTER he knows it's safe, AFTER he feels it's his choice, AFTER he feels comfortable with it, and AFTER he knows he is going to enjoy the change, too. To meet all of these criterion, well - it takes a long time!
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melmil, you are a genius. and one patient, tenacious cookie.
You and your dad have a truly special thing going.

my respect,
Bobbie
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