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Mom has lived with me for the last 7 months under the doctors orders of 24/7 and can't live alone anymore. She moved in with me, I quit my full time job to care for her. She is stronger but the dementia is getting worse. She thinks now that she feels stronger she can go back home and live by herself again and unfortunately the one brother she thinks walks on water agrees with her so he pushes for her to come back home. what can I do? None of my other siblings are willing to stay with her

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Have you looked into Assisted Living? I have worked with several families, in similar situations, find communities that their loved ones agreed on. Sometime's the institutional feel of nursing homes can deter people from other senior living options. Just a thought and good luck :)
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I have been my Mother's care giver since my Father passed away almost 4 years ago... She had a heart attack not even 2 weeks after he died, and she has dementia... I have had to move her twice now, first to independent senior housing, she did not do well alone. Now she is in an Assisted Living Unit in the Memory Care. Do what you know in your heart is right... I do feel some sense of quilt but I know she needs to be where she is...
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Great responses here. Did the doctor do an evaluation on your mom? My cousin, who was not functioning in her home, bills overdue, etc., seemed fine at the doctor office, but once the questions begin it was VERY apparent there was a huge problem. She didn't know her address, where she graduated, her birth date, her previous surgeries, or even what season we were in. Sometimes the doctor's words have more impact with family members.

Also, if your mom likes to repeat things because she forgets she's already said them, then put the phone number for the siblings on the wall so your mom can call phone them every 5 minutes to repeat the same story. That usually convinces the person things are not right.
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Another one is...

- Is he able to maintain some kind of daily routine? Like awake in the day and sleeping at night?

My mom got to the point where she'd stay up all night, all day, and then sleep for another day, missing her meds & meals. She acted like a bratty kid when anybody tried to talk about it with her. She was on strong meds that just could not be skipped or taken "whenever" and had to be taken with food. She actually said to me: "You can't make me go to bed! I'll go to bed when I feel like it! If you put me in bed I won't sleep!" For a second there, she turned into an overtired 4 year old in front of me.
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Joanna56 - I did that with my mom for the better part of the 20 years I've lived out of state. She should have been in assisted living 15 years ago, but refused to consider any other option than living in her hoarder mess. Everybody just marked it up to old lady wierdness, not signs of dementia. She drove until 2013, which scared the mess out of me just thinking about it.

Since you are geographically close by is get him to the doc for a cognitive eval. You probably need to talk to the doc or his nurse ahead of time to explain your concerns and how you need their help to get dad into a safer situation.

Be able to articulate several very concrete things that concern you, not just "age".

- Can he manage his meds alone?
- Can he prepare meals safely, and actually eat them at appropriate times in the day?
- Can he manage his bills & money?
- Can he make and keep appointments?
- Does he need help with any routine daily tasks?
- Would he know what to do and be able to do it if the house caught fire?
- Is he keeping up with housework and personal hygiene?
- Is his personality mostly the same as before, like 5 or 10 years ago?
- Is he aware of his changed state and accepting of the changes to come or is he hostile about the future?

***If you stopped going over there to help, what would it turn into?***

This is a major consideration. You can't drop your life to pick up the pieces that will get bigger & bigger.

There's tons of articles on the site about signs to look for and how to have the conversation with your parent. It kind of depends on their personality.

There will come a point where sense has to prevail over what dad says he can do and keeping the status quo. The doctor can help you.
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My father is the same. I would love to get him into a facility but he won't even consider it. I am not able to go through getting him declared incompetent (and understand that many judges just won't do it unless they are completely out of it.) So I continue to live with the stress. The only good thing is that he lives on his own, ten minutes from me so I only have to deal with him in person three to four times a week. Right now I am frozen to the couch, dreading calling him to tell him I a coming to taking him to Walmart, etc.
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Chris, just a line of comfort - quite possibly your mother thinks this one brother walks on water BECAUSE he agrees with her. Once he's better informed, however…

Has anyone got POA?
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Ask your brother to come and stay with your mother or take her to your brother for a few days. Your brother will see the light. And do not let your mother stay on her own. My mother who had dementia used to walk out of the house on her own. I installed a security system from AlarmForce AlarmCare in Toronto because of her frequent tripping and falling. I had to take her to a nursing home finally. She was against it at first but later on started to like that place.
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My sister, who lives in another state, would call my mother daily and could not "see" what we at home saw daily - that my mother was declining and needed more and more help. It is not until she came to visit that she really understood what was going on. What we also found interesting is that even when my sister came for a visit, mom put on a "company" attitude and actually seemed better. So - it was hard convincing sister that mom needed more than what we could give. If your siblings are unwilling to stay with your mom, then they have no say in mom's care. If her doctor is telling you that she needs 24/7 care, then get the help of a social worker and an elder lawyer who can help you follow doctors orders. Good luck!
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A social worker (senior services) can come to your home and you can tell them you feel nervous about your brother and the family's neglect or denial about your mom's care.

The same social worker (if your mother does not have much money) can get you paid for caregiving. I agree get a power of attorney and get your mom to a neurologist who can give her a test and declare she needs 24/7 care.

That is the problem with Alzheimer's or dementia, the person does not realize, they need help, their minds do not know valuable information is just missing (when we forget where our keys are, they think it is only that minor, sometimes they themselves(mom) are in denial).

1. Do not talk with your brother about the POA (poa papers are available on the internet for free) get it first, have mom sign it with a notary available at any currency exchange, immediately.

2. Make an appointment with the neurologist and talk about your suspicions that your mother might have dementia or might need 24/7 care. Have her take the test...
3. if your brother gives you any grief call the social worker you are afraid for your mother to fall into a no care situation...

4. Not everyone is cut out to be a caregiver, but don't expect that people will help you because "it is the"right thing to do" most siblings do not help, but you could talk to the Social Worker about it...and maybe with some counseling siblings could pull together about mom, but you know how some people feel about counseling???so don't expect magic there. Good luck!
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Have her MD note that she is sufficiently incapacitated that she needs YOU to be POA. Get Financial POA also, then get her into a nursing home. Brother can come and take her to dinner or lunch, or to visit HIS home. He will figure it out eventually. In any case, do not bring her back to your home.
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Starshine...I agree! This site is the best. So many comments, suggestions, stories of what others are going thru. Sad to say for others but good for me, I realize how easy I have it. Husband has alzheimers, I took care of him by myself until about 2 months ago, and put him in a home. He is going downhill quickly. But...I have been so lucky, so blessed having him as my husband. He has been easy to take care of, compared to so so many others. Sometimes I feel bad that I ever complain.
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If anyone says anything against how you are handling things, ask them to take over. Have them sign a paper stating when they will be there to help and time and days/weeks, etc.
When push comes to shove, have them put their money where there mouth is!
Pay up or Shut UP! We're all doing the best we can and more power to us.
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sandwich42, you have written a lengthy but succinct and helpful response. I need to copy/paste particularly the "how to" section.
I'm always amazed at all the good advice and kind words (and yes sometimes harsh, but needed) comments. This web site is a blessing as well as all who take time to help.
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Have your brother take his mother for the weekend if he's able to see how her day goes and what's required. Sometimes living in the dream isn't as fun as you think. I'm sure he'll get an eye opener and a better understanding of what she's like and the challenges you face everyday wanting a normal life while caring for your mother.
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My husband has moderate Alzheimers and he also thinks there is nothing wrong with him. He constantly yells at me about wanting to buy a car. Of course he cannot drive anymore so I get this morning and night. I agree it might be time to look into Assisted Living for your sanity. I could not quite my job. We would be living on the street. I have a day care worker come in twice a week and taking him to day care once a week.. You need to get her on a list right away. I live in Florida and there is an Aging and Disabiliy Resource Center (I am sure there is something like that in your area). I had him on a list for about 6 months and recently had a social worker come to my home to evaluate him. My next step is the financial portion. Hoping to be approved for some type of help. Also get yourself a Durable POA right away. Until your brother can step up and help I would not even discuss anything with him. Everyone tells me they want to help but no one helps so I am basically on my own and I don't care what anyone has to say. I am doing the best I can to keep my sanity and you need to do this also.
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Hi caregiverforum1, Very interesting. "anosognosia" I never new the name for it before. That definitely fits my dad. He has so many deficits, and is completely unaware of any of them.
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I couldn't agree with all of the comments more! I hope you take them to heart.
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Great advice from all who answered. VERY great advice. Get the POA, get yourself some assistance, and get yourself a job if for no other reasons it will be a distraction from the all-consuming care your mom needs or will need as time goes on. Sandwich42 really nails the reality of this disease. Good luck.
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We have a very similar situation, only I am caring for my 90-year-old grandmother, who moved in with me and my husband 5 months ago. I am also not able to work full-time because I am caring for her, and I'm only 32. My grandma had a mini stroke in January 2014, and was not allowed to live alone anymore. My mom is very sick with a longterm illness and is not able to help, and my uncle (her son) takes zero responsibility and doesn't do anything to help out, but he questions me, like is she getting enough eat, why is her vision so bad, has she been to a Dr. lately, etc etc., when in reality, he has no clue how to care for her. He took her to his house for the very first time for an 8 hour period on Mother's Day because I told him he should spend time with her, especially on that day (he never comes to see her), and he returned her soaked in urine because she wasn't taken to the bathroom once and was in the same underwear the entire time! Bottom line, don't let the clueless people make you feel like you are doing something wrong, when in reality, you have the world on your shoulders and are doing the right thing. I started feeling like a failure, but her doctor actually told me I am taking great care of her, and she could only hope her family will take such good care of her when she gets old...that was from her doctor! It reassured me that I am doing the right thing!

Like Eyerishlass said, tell him that he is welcome to care for her half of the time, and he will most likely see how much work is involved in caring for her. He might change his tune on the longterm care.

For your own sanity, try an adult day program for your mom where you know she'll be safe. My grandma goes twice a week, and it allows me some room to breathe and feel normal. Also, get your mom on a waiting list for longterm care now. My grandma has been on a waiting list since Feb. 2014, and she's only halfway down the list...she probably has a few more months before she'll get placed. Hang in there! I seriously know what you're going through.
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My mother also thinks she can live independently and we've realized lately that she has the all-too-common condition of anosognosia, a lack of awareness/insight about her deficits. Sadly we can't indulge her wishes to move back to her home even though sometimes I would like to. I find it very hard to deal with her lack of insight and happiness. For safety/legal reasons, you really can't go along with your brother's suggestion to let her move home. What about a daycare set-up? And POA is absolutely essential. http://alzonline.phhp.ufl.edu/en/reading/Anosognosia.pdf
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"DO NO HARM"....Being a R.N., I take this very serious. I am also a care taker for my husband...maybe it is time to have her placed in a home??? This is not bad, just ck. out the places first. Call adult protective services for advice too.
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Get a POA quick before anyone else does. Then you can make the decisions that are best for your Mom and you won't have to worry about what your brochure who walks on water + other sibs think. This is about the future wellbeing of your Mother. Plus your sanity. Period.
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Indulge your brother. If he thinks she can live alone despite her Dr. saying that she can't, have your brother come over to your house early one morning and stay with her all day. This will give him a realistic outlook on how your mom gets along and it will get you out of the house for a day.
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You must get your mom placed into an appropriate facility ASAP.
You can and must take charge and just be prepared to do what is necessary regardless of anybody else.

Facing the truth of decline is very difficult and many people will go to great lengths to stay away from the truth of things. They find themselves in a living h*ll, with their parent suffering and their own health & wellbeing suffering at the same time. They find themselves strapped with all the work, all the burden, and no help coming from anybody in the family. Then they come to this site on the verge of a total mental and physical breakdown.

If you needed a full time job paycheck before, you STILL DO, so you need to setup things so you can get back to work. Putting yourself in financial jeopardy is NOT the right thing to do. If you couldn't just stop working before all this, then you still need to work and have income. That didn't change.

My mom is 76, requires 24/7 care, can't be alone, and has moderately-severe Alzheimers impairment. Make no mistake though, she can get up and haul it down the hallway with her walker and she can sit up, look bright eyed, and have a conversation with you for really short periods of time. She demands to be sent back to her house, she fiercely insists she can too live alone and then starts in on being held hostage in a hell hole. She is incapable of understanding her disability anymore. She denies having Alzheimers. She is so mixed up most of the time, but she comes across as totally confident and totally right about what she's saying. Taking mom out of the care center and bringing her home with me simply because she is very passionate about doing that would be the WRONG thing to do for her. And for me. I have to work. I have kids. Our home is our sanctuary from life. I am not skilled or trained as a 24/7 caregiver to somebody on the edge of severe Alzheimers impairment. This is not like nursing somebody through chicken pox. It gets worse, more demanding, and a lot uglier. It does not get better and it could go on for 10+ years.

I have aunts who don't know jack from shinola about how mom is, who are angry with me for moving mom out of her house in the country and into care. They refuse to accept the reality of her Alzheimers and what that means. They are blind as a bat to the squalor she was living in and the bills that had gone to collections, and God forbid they step in and actually help her. But I don't care and it doesn't matter what they think. THEY weren't willing to lift a finger to make anything better, so it fell 100% into my lap to fix it. THEY do not get a vote here until they pitch in, take action, and stop directing from the sidelines.

YOU have to get reasonable and sane decisions made. YOU have to put aside what siblings all think without really knowing and TAKE ACTION for your mom's safety. It's not about what's comfy for you, or convenient, it's about SAFETY for mom. Do not take one ounce of criticism from anybody else in the family. When they come over to relieve you for an 8 hour shift 3 times a week, then they get to vote.

If you are debating moving her out of your house or not consider this:

1. Do you have on-site skilled nursing staff 24/7 at home?
2. Do you have nursing support staff available 24/7 at home?
3. Is your house configured to have no fall hazards?
4. Do you have memory-care therapy, activities and programming at your house? E.g. re-learning, music & pet therapy, etc.
5. Who is offsetting the cost of care in your home? E.g. food, cleaning materials, washing machine wear & tear, the time and pay this is costing you directly? None of this is free.
6. Do you have fresh staff to come on duty at regular hours to relieve you?
7. Are you prepared to deal with the round-the-clock-plus care aging dementia patients require? E.g. night wandering, pacing, hallucinations, outbursts, etc.

If you can't meet those kinds of needs, then you really have to look into placement for your mom. Use your area agency on aging. Most states have one with a hotline you can call to get started looking for the right kind of place.
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