My mom has been in a group home for about three weeks now.
The story is kind of complicated. She's been going downhilll since she had a stroke 13 years ago, and has gotten more extreme (sleeping with a meat cleaver under her pillow, thinking neighbors are talking to her through heat vents, etc.) and more delusional and hostile (she thinks my husband steals dollar store figures from her, that he's trying to kill me, or he wants her dead for her money).
Over the years she's cut off contact with all family, including myself when she's mad at me about something. She's changed locks. She picks fights.
I've tried to help her countless times in ways big and small, either by driving her to the doctor, shopping for her, taxiing her around, etc.
Finally after many years of fighting I called adult protective services and they evaluated her, as did a doctor, a social worker, a couple nurses. The verdict was she is not fit to live alone. In large part it's due to confusion and health issues, primarily because she's diabetic and never monitors her blood sugar. She also stopped taking her blood pressure meds, saying she wanted to die, and her bp spiked. (She's fired every home nurse I've procured for her, which was my effort to try and keep her in her apartment, which she preferred.)
Finally I had enough and it went to court. I admitted I'm not sure I would be the best person to care for her considering the mental and physical problems. (The mental ones in particular.) The court assigned an outside guardian. And now she's adjusting to the home and we're in the process of packing some of her belongings for the home and storing a few of her items, and selling the rest for her care. (Well the guardian will sell them for her care ... I'm securing sentimental items and necessities for her.)
But now I'm contending with guilt. I feel bad that my mom is taken from her apartment and forced to a home -- though repeated efforts were made to keep her living on her own -- but I also know she really can't live on her own. I also know she feels abandoned somewhat and I feel like I've abandoned or betrayed her. But we've debated having her live with us, and with her issues with my husband (and in turn, with me) we're not sure it'd work. Right now I work at home, but I'm looking for another job, so having her around would distract my work because she has to always get attention and she never is willing to go anywhere.
If I work outside the home we couldn't leave her alone in our house for long spells. She smokes and she'd leave the doors open, let the pets out, maybe let in solicitors. We'd hate to come home and find the house burnt down (she burnt her mattress and bedding a few times) or find the cats missing, or something else.
I'll be seeing her tomorrow and I know she's going to ask to go home. I don't know what to say. I don't want her to feel abandoned, but I don't think I'm the best person to care for her. Not at the level of care she needs.
How do people handle that guilt, or cope with the transition? Or help their parents transition?