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It is now at the point where my mom needs to come live with us. She needs help managing medications, hygiene , nutrition, etc. We will gladly take her in, though I have a major concern.


She is very, very negative. Pretty much doesn’t like anyone and her new target is my husband. She says he gives her dirty looks when no one is looking and is sarcastic, etc. She has never really cared for him, though she knows he is a wonderful husband and father. The Alzheimer’s has made her feelings worse. She has told off many people in her family already (we have just a handful of people now) and I’m afraid he is next. She and I had a big talk about it, but it’s still an issue. I don’t know if she forgot the conversation or is still just on a mission.


Her sister passed away from dementia a few years ago and almost ruined the marriage between her son and daughter in law. I don’t want that and I can’t handle the stress of constantly defending. My husband has geared himself up for interacting with her and is trying to remind himself that she isn’t in her right mind. When she is low, then it gets very very bad.


I feel sick. I almost wonder if I should just move in with her and care for her in her own home (which is a hoarder home). She always worries that she’s a burden, but the only time she is, is when she’s I cooperative and mean. Other than that, I will gladly help clean and feed her and spend time with her.


I dont want this to be a be a burden for my husband and kids....though they are very kind and would help.


She doesnt want to come here...1) it’s not her home 2) overwhelming to try to find things to pack (though I would help) 3) doesn’t like my husband and 4) can’t handle leaving the house and car rides.


On top of it..she lives with my sister who is quite ill and can no longer care for her. I never imagined this being such a mess.

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I say this kindly... why are you doing this?

She has Alz and is mean and uncooperative and negative. She is not going to be any better than she is at this moment, and will get worse.

She will not remember your talks.

You have a husband and kids. As someone who has had parental units with Alz in my home, with my kids, I would not EVER do it again. And these were people I loved deeply, who loved my kids deeply. Who were positive and helpful and kind and happy. Alz changed them into people that I had to protect my kids from.

You feel sick. That is your body telling you this is not a good idea.

There are ways to get placement even if she doesn’t have the resources. It isn’t easy and you will struggle through it, but in the end, you will have a life and memories with your family and your health.

If you move her in or you, what... leave your family? to move in with her, you all lose those things.

And she is no better off because the problem is the disease, not her living situation. You cannot take away the Alz. I know you wish you could. I know it feels like if you can just take care of her, it will be better for her. But it won’t. And you are taking a great risk of hurting your family deeply in the process.

Helping her means making sure she has proper care in a place that can handle her needs. Loving her means visiting, bringing flowers and laughing with her or hugging her when she is sad. It is hard not to confuse the two when a desperate situation is calling for a solution.

But don’t back yourself into a corner you cannot get out of. I know it seems hard now, but you cannot imagine how hard it is to move someone once you have moved them in. I can hear the worry in your post, and I am very sorry you are in this situation.

From my heart to yours, the best thing to do is keep a clear head. Try this... solve the problem as if you were helping a friend decide. Or as if you lived on the moon and could not possibly be in a direct care role.

There is hope in this. But, you will have to let go of guilt and fear of her anger and worry of what “others” may think. (Hint: “others” are usually one or two very vocal people who are a pain in the butt, but no help. Or there are no “others”. We just think someone may think ill of us.) This is not easy, but you can do it.

If she has Alz, I promise you... someone, somewhere is going to think ill of how you handle things, no matter what you do. You need to thicken your skin and soldier on doing what is right... but not just for your mom. Right for your mom means safe and cared for.

But, your first obligation is to your husband and your kids. You are THEIR mom. You need to be with them and raise them and love them. If your attention is given to doing the work of a one-woman nursing facility, those are the things that get dropped. This kind of care requires that the important gets dropped for the urgent every time.

Again, I say this with kindness and empathy. I just am further down the stretch of road you are just beginning to travel down and hope my experience can help you see the forest rather than get mired down in the trees.
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Takincare Aug 20, 2019
Well stated. She will miss many milestones in her children's lives by taking care of her mom. Her marriage will also suffer greatly. Best choice for mom is memory care where she will get 24x7 care, be safe and taken care of. One big thing many people don't understand is that being around the negativity or the person negativity is directed towards does wear you down and make you miserable too.
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I can’t get past the part where you say that she almost destroyed your brother’s marriage yet you have no problem taking her in. Does she mean more to you than your husband and marriage?
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lealonnie1 Aug 21, 2019
Eexcellent point.
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You need for your mother NOT to come to live with you, both for yourself, your own immediate family, and for her. Yes, for her.

You have established the fact that she is not currently happy. “Hoarders” are not happy people. Hoarders with dementia are less happy.

She will not be “happy” at home, nor will she be happy in yours.
Said in the most most gentle way possible, her dementia will not get better, and WILL get worse, and that will exacerbate all of the other symptoms she is exhibiting. Her behavior towards your husband will escalate, and/or she will involve one or more of your children in her paranoid outbursts, and/or she will attempt to disengage you from interactions with him in order to have you more involved in hers........

I thought I was hastening my mother’s demise when I tricked her into a nursing home at the age of 89. She lived there AND TRULY LIVED, for 5 1/2 of the happiest of any of her life following my father’s death.

Find the nicest residence available for her within a 10-15 minute drive of your home, and place her, but BEFORE YOU DO, read what you’ve written here, and answer this question- how many “concerns” do you REALLY have??
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Sarahk60 Aug 22, 2019
“I thought I was hastening my mother’s demise when I tricked her into a nursing home at the age of 89. She lived there AND TRULY LIVED, for 5 1/2 of the happiest of any of her life following my father’s death.”

This is reassuring. Thank you!!
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You say “We will gladly take her in’. Then you say “My husband has geared himself up for interacting with her and is trying to remind himself that she isn’t in her right mind.” Your husband may be trying to do the right thing, but I think you are kidding yourself about the ‘gladly’, at least on his part. It’s not good now, and it’s going to get worse.

It sounds as though you haven’t seen a good quality Assisted Living facility. You say “she is not quite there yet”. Are you thinking that being ‘there’ means sitting immobile in an old fashioned nursing home, without recognising anyone? We have had carers here who are quite jealous of AL conditions – nice food, lots of activities, a range of people to talk to, organised excursions etc etc.

Before you and your husband commit yourselves, have a look at ALs close to you. Pick the best two, and take your mother to visit. You may find that you can give her a choice that is better than living with you and your husband, for her as well as for you.

With luck, your sister’s health will also improve without the strains of living with her.
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Zdarov Aug 22, 2019
I second this. Go visit the elder-oriented facilities around you and dispel the ‘one of those places’ picture in your mind.
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"She can’t manage money, medicine or hygiene...or nutrition. She does imagine things (such as my husband being mean to her when no one is looking, or the neighbors spying on them in the backyard)...besides that..she is very aware. There’s no way we could put her in a home while she realizes what’s going on."

Your mother is one person. There is also your sister (who absolutely needs to be relieved of caregiving), you, your husband and your children. The "wants" of one person should not outweigh the wellbeing of multiple other persons.

Is there really no way you could put her in a facility? What does she expect to happen? Does she realize your sister's health issues?
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Sarahk60 Aug 22, 2019
I totally understand and agree with what you’re saying. She does realize my sister is sick and worries constantly. ...and then when she’s difficult no one matters but her.

I just dont know.
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You have to understand something about dementia and Alzheimer's.....nothing you say will make a difference. Once they get an idea stuck in is their heads, you can't get rid of it with an AXE. If mother dislikes hubby, she's going to hate him and continue harping on it until you lose your mind or your marriage, whichever comes first. Hoarding is an anxiety disorder. Combine an anxiety disorder with dementia and then sprinkle in a heap of negativity and by God, you've got MY MOTHER. Who lives in a Memory Care Assisted Living, by the way, and whom I visit once a week. Last week's visit was SO awful I had to get OUT of there asap. But I got OUT. Where are YOU going to go when mother goes on a tirade, and she WILL be going on tirades, trust me. Do not take her into your home. Frankly, I can't understand how you'd even be considering such a thing! Gives me the willies. If you feel you MUST do this, then do a trial run for a week. Just to get a small taste of what your new life is going to look and feel like.
I work as a receptionist in a Memory Care Assisted Living community here in town, not where my mother lives. This places charges $8300 A month and is at full capacity. For good reason. Taking a loved one with dementia into your home is not manageable for 95% of us.
Best of luck
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Takincare Aug 22, 2019
Don't forget hiding things, accidents(like a baby, you'll be changing sheets) lack of or fighting about basic hygiene and clean clothes. Meanness will go thru the roof. They do not, will not, CAN NOT filter what they say and do, their brain is broken. Children and husband will also become resentful and stressed. Tell yourself what you THINK may happen with your marriage but it will NEVER be the same. I live it each day caring not for my mother, but MIL. You become their personal servant, ordered and bossed around. There will not be any help caring for her personal needs, it's all you. You will have the life sucked out of you doing it 24x7. The family suffers, no privacy, no family time, missing out of children's life and accomplishments. Husband goes to the wayside, he may or may not be there when LO journey has ended. She is never going to improve, only worsen. Letting others assist her is the best choice for all. Just wish I would've listened to my own advice. Hindsight is 20x20
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My mom has been in my home since 2005. Trust me, your life will never, ever be the same again.

Everyone else said all of the important stuff! Best wishes to you whatever you decide.
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Sarahk60 Aug 22, 2019
Thank you. I’m sorry you’ve had to go through this too.
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You feel sick now and you're only thinking about doing this!

"...We will gladly take her in, though I have a major concern. She is very, very negative." In my opinion it is difficult if not impossible to maintain healthy relationships once you are living together with someone who is so negative. Trust me when I say my FIL may give your mother a run for her money in the negativity department and I feel sick whenever I have to spend more than a couple of hours with him. I leave feeling depressed and run over by a dump truck's worth of negativity.

Moving her into your home is not the answer and neither is leaving your husband and children to move in with her. Get her important papers in order (living will, will, durable power of attorney), sit down with her finances, figure out what she can afford, enlist a social worker, make a plan to tour senior care communities, pick one, and execute her moving into it. You cannot do this yourself and it's unfair to everyone else to be thrust into caregiving.
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Sarahk60 Aug 22, 2019
Who could hook us up with a social worker? Are there ones who specialize in working with the elderly?
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Look.

Your mother will get worse, not better. If you are already finding her behaviours difficult to soak up, how in the name of heaven are you going to feel when she is in your and your husband's faces twenty four hours a day and you're both short of sleep and sick to the back teeth of cleaning up after her?

Do not move her in, and do not move in with her. You are married, and apparently to a very nice man who is prepared to do his level best to support you, so not one you want to lose *or* *hurt*.

It is not your fault that your mother needs the level of care that she does, and it is not your responsibility to supply that care in person.

There is also your sister to consider, and given your mother's state of health and the complication of her own caregiving role you are going to need professional advice to work out a care plan that looks after both of them. Have you consulted anyone about doing this? - social workers, elder care planners, your mother's and/or sister's health care team?
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Sarahk60 Aug 22, 2019
Haven’t consulted anyone. We will be seeing someone in geriatrics soon. We’ll start there .

The hard thing is, she’s in fairly decent health physically...she just can’t seem to manage medicine, nutrition and hygiene...and when the meds and nutrition is out of whack, then she feels awful physically and becomes very depressed. Just don’t know if it’s at the AL level yet.
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When you say she has all these issues wrong with her but then say she's not ready for a "home"...you are dead wrong. First of all, no she's not reading for a nursing home also known as long term care. But she is ready for assisted living. They will manage her medication and other things you list. They are not horrible places. Then when it’s needed she can transition to memory care so choose a place that offers both.
Everyone here has given you the best advice and if you don’t heed it, you will regret it. They don’t get better, they get worse. Those rose colored glasses need to come off. Think with your head and not your heart. Even with her in a facility it won’t be a cake walk. I hope you choose what’s best for her and best for your husband and marriage. And by the way, she won’t like whatever you choose so get used to that. It’s a sad sad disease.
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Sarahk60 Aug 22, 2019
Thank you. This is a nightmare of a situation.
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