Hubby has gone to day program 4 times now over 3 weeks. First time understandingly not smooth. 2 and 3 times ok, last time a few days ago not so good. Once we pulled in and he realized where we were he said “oh lord”. I said “don’t you want to go help the ladies out again today?"

He said I guess I can. Once inside it was very difficult for me to leave. He knows I’m going to leave him there and said “I’m not staying today”.

It took 15 minutes or more but help was able to distract him so I could leave. Besides having a melt down in car at the thought of leaving him upset, not sure how to handle going back.

It took an hour but he settled down and was ok when I picked him up 3 hours later (thought he would be so mad at me).

Any suggestions on how to make this smoother going forward? The advice I have been given is to not tell him in advance that we are going or certainly don’t ask him if he wants to go. But he is aware of that I “spring” this on him every time and never ask him.

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It's a little like caring for my children when they were toddlers. I would tell them that I had to work and they were going to ________ until I was done. Yes, there were some tantrums, but eventually it became the norm. I remember wise moms telling me not to ask yes/no questions but to ask questions with multiple choices that I was OK with. Example: "do you want orange juice or apple juice or water with your breakfast?" No to ask "do you want to eat _____ or have breakfast?" - especially when I knew they were hungry and needed to eat at that time. Treat this adult day program as what it is - a needed resource to help both of you with his needs.
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Reply to Taarna

In my opinion 4x in 3 weeks is not enough. That averages 1x a week. Not enough time to get him used to the routine. I sent Mom 3x a week. Monday, Wed and Friday. Except for the first time she was bussed by the Daycare to and from. Yes, cost was $85 a day. I did with my Mom what I did with my kids. I walked Mom in and allowed the aide to take over. Then I walked out. My DH was the problem. He had to stand and watch to make sure she was OK. He did this with our kids too.

Daycare ran Mom $85 a day. You could take that money and pay someone to watch DH while u shop or have lunch with the girls. Maybe u can find another retired man to sit with DH.
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Reply to JoAnn29

Imho, the idea of you taking him there with the promise that you stop at McDonald's for a hot fudge sundae after seems like a good plan. Besides, they're usually 2 for $1.00.
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Reply to Llamalover47

I used to own a nursery school. At the start of the year or when I added a new student, I’d tell the parents of fussy kids to just LEAVE. The kids would always calm down when their parents were out of sight. It’s hard, but if you’re being manipulated, it’s time to stop hanging around and sneaking out. Just a cheerful, “I’ll see you in a little while” may do the trick. I did suggest that my parents call and check on their kids when they got home. The kids were always busy playing and having fun. I think it’s time you took back the reins and took control of the situation. No more meltdowns. YOU are important, too!

Also: how about a joint reward on the way home: an ice cream cone, stop at McDonald’s, etc. That might help.
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Reply to ConnieCCH
NYDaughterInLaw Dec 23, 2020
That's a terrific idea about a treat for them both on the way home.
I think you should tell him the truth about going and how often and how long he needs to be there and tell him why.

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Reply to bevthegreat

Ask the staff how he is after you go.
I am sure you are having a more difficult time of this than he is.
Is it possible to have someone meet him at the door and say right away "George, I am so glad you are here today. I need your help with something"
This would give him purpose right away.
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Reply to Grandma1954

Your hubby’s comments seem quite lucid, and many of us would feel the same if sent off to day care. However you need respite yourself. What are the alternatives? Give him any alternative you can think of (AL? Sitting on a bench in the park with a label around his wrist? You ending up in hospital yourself?), and ask him for alternatives that would suit him. Did you tell him that you were in tears last time he objected? And it was HIS fault for making a fuss? Ask what he can do for YOU so that you can have time to do the things you need to do yourself. This needs to be about him helping you, not him deciding whether or not he wants to co-operate with what he sees as a boring and unnecessary outing.
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Reply to MargaretMcKen
JustDaughter Dec 21, 2020
Most people who use guilt to achieve this will eventually feel more guilt. At least i did.
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I thought day care would give me some respite and also help my wife be engaged with the activities. It started out well because as an x-teacher, she helped the others with their projects. But it didn't last long. After just a few weeks, I was told the staff couldn't keep her because she no longer particpated in the activites and would walk away. Initially I didn't tell her where we were going and when we arrived I said they wanted us to help with the assignments. I snuck out the back door. Daycare usually comes when home day care doesn't work. Have you tried hiring an agency to come to the home? As a caregiver you just have to be so creative and resourceful. It's very exhausting and stressful. Once daycare didn't work, I began looking for a permanent care facility for her. I wish you luck in finding a succesful situation for him.
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Reply to sjplegacy

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