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My MIL is so afraid she will step on my foot when I'm moving her she almost makes us both fall. And she has severe Rheumatoid Arthritis and tries to "help" but ends up making more work. I have calmly and sweetly tried to change these. But her dementia makes it a daily maddening chore. I am wife to her only child who can't handle any of this. So it's me 24/7 caring for her in her home. I've not slept in my own bed in a month.

And your husband is okay with you living with MIL now to be her 24/7 caregiver?

(What's HE doing in the meantime????)
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MILcare247 Oct 7, 2019
He comes and gets the laundry, runs errands, sits with her an hour or two every other day so I can go home and shower and see our son.
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If your husband can't handle any of this, then I suggest that "His" mother be placed in AL. This is not fair to you and I do not understand why you do not put your foot down, no pun intended;

You do not have to live with her, there are other options available.
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MILcare247 Oct 8, 2019
There are. But she lived in a personal hell, ALONE, with her husband who had undiagnosed dementia and parkinsons. Became violent and aggressive. She had no help and didn't recognize the symptoms. Nor did his dr. I just want to cate for her gently and sweetly because she deserves it. I've know her since I was 12, 44 years. She has been kind to everyone. She deserves no less care.
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Your husband can’t handle it? Too bad. He has to. Unless he’s okay with you dying or being incapacitated before MIL is.
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lealonnie1 Oct 7, 2019
Well said. How come when men 'can't handle' things they lay the burden at OUR feet, as if we CAN handle what they can't? Come on.
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So, you are caring for your unmanageable mother in law in her home 24/7, if I'm reading your post correctly. You are 'moving her', to boot, which means that both of you are GOING to fall one of these days, undoubtedly. This could mean you'll both be lying on the floor for God knows how long waiting for help to arrive. Pretty ugly picture, huh? But it's the truth of the situation you've accepted for yourself, for some reason. You haven't slept in your own bed for a month, yet your husband has, I take it, since he 'can't handle any of this'. So he sleeps like a log while you stay up all night tending to the needs of a woman who needs a STAFF of qualified people to care for her.

Reread the above paragraph to see what's wrong with this picture. Then have a Come to Jesus meeting with your husband, who, in reality, CAN handle ALL of this with HIS mother. Make a decision as to where your MIL is going to move, and when, and then get yourself back into your own bed and have a good night's sleep. Okay?

It's hubby's turn to take the bull by the horns and get mother placed.

Wishing you all the best of luck
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For safety’s sake, get an OT with geriatric training in and photograph the pointers given to you for weight transfer.

Two benefits - immediate advice on what YOU need to be doing for safety and hopefully better approach to what you AND SHE need to do, and MORE IMPORTANT-

-a trained and an experienced opinion about her present circumstances. If she is not “safe and comfortable” in your care, and if YOUR life is being negatively impacted in your reluctant role as a caregiver, it’s definitely time to start seeking alternatives.

I slept on the floor beside my mother’s bed for two months following her discharge from rehab. Doing so is far past above and beyond....
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MILcare247 Oct 7, 2019
She is safe and comfortable in my care. I probably just displayed my thoughts poorly. I am here to care for her because hubby can't handle it. He comes and gets the laundry, and runs errands. He comes and sits with her for 1 or 2 hours every other day while I go shower and see our adult son.
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What's going on that's keeping you from sleeping in your own bed? Not getting enough sleep or good quality sleep can have major impacts on your own health and well being. Are you afraid MIL is going to get out of bed? There are alarms that can help warn you about nighttime movement and at least let you sleep until they go off.

Someplace in my reading was a statement that people with dementia take longer to process a question or direction, as much as 40 seconds. The more words we use the longer it may take to process. So one of the best things we can do when working with a dementia patient is get into a habit of waiting for a response instead of repeating or going on to say something more. I found with my mother a "script" of short directions used uniformly helps with our transfers. Stay on the script even when your MIL is making all the right steps. It seems to help with the timing and offset my mother from making those "helping" steps that don't really help.

I suggest seeing if her PCP would order some in home OT to work with the two of you on safe techniques. The OT can recommend equipment, like a specific kind of walker or wheelchair, or make adjustments to customize equipment to work best for your MIL. We were surprised with how much easier my mother found walking after the PT tech adjusted her walker.
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Why a month since you slept in your own bed? Is it since a discharge from hospital – or what else prompted the change? Perhaps you could put a time limit on this – say another month. If things don’t change by then, MIL will need to make other arrangements. Tell her this, and tell DH as well. After three weeks if things aren’t on the mend, put your foot down. OK, month is going to be up, what are the options? Because continuing like this isn’t one of them.
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Short term, maybe talk her through every step of what you need her to do to safely get her up.

Long term, why is she living at home alone? Is anything in her condition likely to improve? If not, I would get some home health aides over ASAP to assist with her care.

Longer term, start looking into a nursing home unless enough at home care can be arranged to give you back at least most of your life.

It's unfortunate that your husband will not help. What's up with that? If he really can't, ok. But maybe he can put his fear aside and help you help HIS mom.
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MILcare247 Oct 8, 2019
See is not home alone. I am with her. Her dementia has developed sundowners syndrome. We never leave her alone. I am here, hubby comes and sits 1 or 2 hours every other day so I can go home and shower. She gets very upset when I leave because it breaks her routine. Which makes her confusion and agitation worse. She is blind in her left eye and has no depth perception.
Bed alarm last night, so far so good. But the cat woke me up at 4am!
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Are you using a Gait Belt? That can help quite a bit.
If she needs more help than a Gait Belt ask about getting a Sit to Stand.
Very easy piece of equipment to use and it helps with transfers. I even used it to help my Husband in an upright position to change him, I did not have to worry about him loosing his balance and the changes were fast and easy.
I could easily move him from chair to bed, from one chair to another.
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MILcare247 Oct 8, 2019
I do have one. I do use it some times. There have been times, that things happen so quickly, I can't use it.
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I'm not sure who suggested that I have hubby come sit with his Mom for a couple of hours before lunch. While I run home and shower instead of in the afternoon. She stayed more lucid and not as anxious or aggitated while I was gone. Thanks for the advice!
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