My independent mom is ready to go to an assisted living or memory care facility. Any advice?

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My mom is ready to go into assisted living or memory care. She just spent 6 days in the hospital. Her dementia has increased, she is much weaker and she definitely and she is no longer able to live in her apartment with a daily visit for caregivers. Truthfully, she probably should have moved into a facility before now. She becomes very agitated and uncomfortable being left alone. My husband and I have taken turns sleeping on an air mattress in her bedroom to make sure she is safe at night, and we are paying for caregivers during the day. The problem is that she is not social at all. She has always been a loner. I am very worried how she will adjust to a memory care facility. I do not know how they will get her to take part in any of the activities. She really has no interest in people outside of her family. I am already burnt out providing round the clock care but so scared to take the next step. No matter what I do I know she will be miserable and I am at my wits end. She is very unhappy and just wants to die. She is 90 years old. This is a women who was very independent her whole life and has always hated to depend on anyone but herself. Any advice would be welcome

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You sound like me contemplating placing my mom. She listens to nothing I suggest or say. I do have a good companion caregiver for her when I'm at work. Mom is slowly becoming antisocial. We have missed family functions, she attends the senior center once and a blue moon now. She talks to the radio more than to me now. I just make sure she is fed, takes meds and is getting some sleep. I'm starting to look at facilities for her because she is getting more aggressive physically. She's been verbally aggressive for months. The doctor thinks she may flourish in a facility due to her "personality " of wanting attention. All I can do is pray to find a place that can give her what she needs. Worrying about her not liking something before we try it can only make the decision to help her harder. Do what's in the best interest for your mom and that will eventually bring you peace of mind.
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Jeanne is right; daughters are often not seen by their mothers as authority figures; didn't the mother spend years telling them what to do? Then giving advice when they had moved away? Aren't they really only the mom's "babies"? Did they manage their lives perfectly? How could they know anything, even tho they are in their 60's?
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And if your mother doesn't participate in social activities in a care center, how will that be worse than her not participating in social activities at home?

Taking turns sleeping on an air mattress does not sound like a viable long-term solution. If you decide that keeping your mother in her home is best for her, then hire a night shift caregiver. Can she afford this?

My mother was gregarious within family settings, but did not seek outside social contact. She didn't attend any of the events her senior apartment building sponsored. So her family was amazed that in the nursing home she attended nearly all events. She enjoyed sitting with other women for coffee and chatting. She blossomed! My mother also did well with authority figures, and they had no trouble getting her to shower, go to meals, change for bed, etc. (Her daughters were not sufficient authority figures, I guess.)

My point is to not borrow trouble ahead of time. If being in a safe pleasant environment with access to help available around the clock is what your mother needs, don't think you can predict how she will react to it.

This is so hard, isn't it? Know that you and your husband are doing your best. Dementia is a horrible condition to deal with.
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My mom, never a social type, didn't much participate in activities in her nursing home, but she loved to "people watch". We made sure she had a room where she was near the door, not the window so that she could watch all the comings and goings and hear what was going on at the nursing station.

Earlier on, we made the mistake of selecting a room in AL that looked out onto trees and grass (what we would have chosen for ourselves). Mom HATED it. THAT made her feel "locked away".

My point is that you may need, possibly through trial and error, find out what really matters to your mom in a living environment. I never thought that my mom would adapt to her Independent Living facility (she joined the Stock Market Club!--who is this new person?), or to her Nursing Home, but adapt she did.

People on this board always predict that their parents will die if put in a facility. Very few of them seem to do that. Many of them thrive.
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The hardest thing is watching someone you love slip further away due to this horrible disease. It happened to my mother in law, always the nucleus of her family, the caregiver to all. At some point they can no longer be left alone for any period of time & can become a danger to themselves or find themselves in bad situations when left alone. Sometimes we have to acknowledge that we are not always best suited to provide the level of care an assisted living or even the subsequent nursing home can provide. I wish you luck & wish I could say something to ease some of the guilt you might be feeling.
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Lovemymomma, Sounds as if it's time.... I, too, have a very independent momma, but it appears that soon she will have to lose that independence because she can hardly manage anything physical anymore, and the pain meds make her strange, not unlike dementia. Neither of them will be happy in a facility in the beginning (are they now?) but there really is no choice; if YOU fall out, then what? God bless, sweetie....
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It may help to review what others have said in the past; it's hard to help someone who needs round the clock care. The misery she has isn't due to what you've done to ease her fears for far, she's under the control of a disease that has robbed her independence and is now transferring her misery onto everyone. Unless you and your spouse intends to sacrifice more time, energy and effort to make the last years of her life comfortable, you will be at the beck and call of a disease that isn't your own, and it sounds that the aftermath of doing more will tax your already overburdened mind.

I can't offer what's best; you and your spouse are dealing with a very sensitive situation with someone who cannot really care for herself the way she used to. She will likely hate any decision that will not return her to her former way of lifestyle, but you and your spouse can only do what you can in face of the disease she has; and if that is best done with those who can provide that round the clock care, you can care for your own needs and hers by regularly seeing her in her new place than delaying the inevitable in her situation, and it seems inevitable to me. The question is whether you can give yourself permission to build a wall against the guilt for saying you had enough and that you can't do more than you already have. If you can, then set a boundary and give yourself the permission to make that decision happen. In the end, whatever decision you make in behalf of her, and for yourself, the dementia she has will not make the choice easy.

My Mom has dementia; and while I don't like what it's done to her, I accept the reality that I may never meet every need she has.
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