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My 78 yr old mother could no longer stay in her home because she couldn't take care of herself and I live 2 1/2 hrs away. She wasn't eating, oxygen was depleted, missing her medication, etc. While at home she refused meals on wheels, refused to wear her Life Alert, quit getting dressed, soiled herself, etc. After she was hospitilized her doctor wanted her to go into the hospital's LTC Unit. Now she's healthy again, although she has to use a walker, she's eating nutritious meals, and her mind and memory are back to what they should be. She doesn't like it there but agrees she can't take care of herself at home. We know she'll fall back into the same behavior. She'll engage in some activities there but I can't get her to leave the facility and engage in life outside the facility. It's a small town and she doesn't want anyone to see her in the "condition" she's in. She'll cry over it. I know it's a big adjustment for her and my dad died just 8 months ago. How can I help her get over the shame and embarrassment she feels?

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Telling your mother how she should feel isn't going to help. You should talk with the social worker at the facility and try to come up with ways to get more invested in the place where she lives. It is often difficult for individuals who have physical issues but are still mentally sharp to adjust to a place where many people around them don't communicate very well. Also, consider having her move to another facility or perhaps one that is closer to where you live. That will provide your mother with the opportunity to take part in the decision-making, which is something she didn't have when she was placed in her present home. If she shes she is making the choice, then her adjustment should improve.
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My mother-in-law who has dementia and macular degeneration, starts lamenting the fact that she can't do anything for herself anymore and how she's such a burden for me to haul her around places. I'm not sure she just wants to bring that fact to my attention, (which I already knew), or she really does feel guilty. In any case I tell her that's what families do for each other and that we ALL get old and need help. Then I tell her to 'buck up' cause I don't mind doing it, and stop telling me how much of a burden she is. I know it might sound harsh, but come on we are all going to have to go through some sort of problems when we get old, so what.
You tell your mother that you too might have to go through this someday, she's just going through it sooner is all. And you tell her for me, to not let her pride get in the way of her having a happier life because of it. Her worrying about what other people are thinking when they see her is prideful. Lose it, she'll be happier.
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