My MIL has been in a stage of not wanting to take a bath for a several years. She is 78 and is capable of getting dressed and undressed - with assistance. She can feed herself and walk without assistance. Her hearing isn’t very good; although, it does seem that she has selective hearing. She frequently acts helpless and then turns around and is self sufficient when no one is around. (We have cameras to know where she is in the house)
However; I believe she is, now, not wanting to take her clothes off. I or my husband will explain it is bath time and show her the water in the tub. After a few minutes of repeating “it is bath time”; we start to try to take her shirt off. She yells for help again, and holds her clothes tightly to herself. The whole time, we are saying “it is bath time... time to take a bath. Take your clothes off and get in”. (We say this calmly. ) She is, surprisingly, strong and will clench the garments or our hands in order to keep us from removing the clothes. I watched a documentary where it was saying that it is all about them, “their time”. She needs a bath at least every other day. Sometimes every day, as she smells. Are we going about this the wrong way?? Often times she will go back to bed if we show her filled tub.
On a slightly different topic... my MIL likes to walk around the house with not much on. We have tried to get her dressed, before coming downstairs to eat. We bring her back upstairs and encourage her to put her clothes on. Most of the time, she will get back in the bed... just to come downstairs in 5-20 minutes - still with no clothes on. Should we just let it go? She will also pretend to be exhausted if we ask her to go upstairs; or do something she doesn’t want to do. (Typically she sleeps until 3:00 or even 7:00pm. Recently she will sleep an entire day; 1 or 2 days out of the week) Some input would be appreciated. I have to be honest that my patience is wearing so thin! I have an education background and worked with Special Needs children... have always been so patient! Now, I am feeling terrible when I raise my voice at my MIL. Speaking to her calmly and sweetly doesn’t always help. Taking her hand and guiding her; doesn’t always help. I feel drained, resentful, and sickened.