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Any thoughts on what to ask the potential caregiving company? Obviously licensing, bonded, insured, background checks, etc., but beyond that I’d like to get your input. I’m storing a bunch of her things in my safe deposit box or at my house before all this takes place - this is the world we live in sadly - but anything else you think I should look out for would be appreciated. Thanks.

I look/interview for personality. First, does the person accept responsibility for what has happened in their life or do they have a blame list of everyone who has done them wrong? Second, do they have good relationships with family, particularly older parents and/or children? Third, attitude about other patients/clients - do you sense kindness or empathy when discussing people they have cared for previously?

My experience is that people who blame others for challenges/problems in their lives are too narcissistic to care much about others and definitely do not make good care givers for venerable elders. Everyone has a few people who have not treated them well, but no one is always a victim of others. One of my mother's PTs placed the blame for not contacting me to schedule a session until the last minute on 3 separate people and events in his organization. He is technically excellent during therapy but I always stay in the room to make sure appropriate limits are maintained. Once he attempted to continue a treatment element pushing to extend a range of motion pass the point my mother found painful. I stopped him; discomfort during PT is normal, painful is not even when it means the day's treatment plan cannot be completed.

People who cannot maintain long term relationships with at least some family tend to have user/abuser traits and/or a very dysfunctional family background too. I would want to hear more information to decide if it's a case of a person gaining the strength to walk away from a dysfunctional family or someone the family walked away from after repeated relationship killing incidents. In either case, I would want to see indications of strong empathy before considering a person with this background as an unsupervised care giver.

Kindness and empathy are the strongest indicators of a personality well suited to care giving. Someone with empathy doesn't tell a struggling elder "Pull your own pants up, I won't do it for you." Kindness and empathy allow a care giver to provide even intimate care while still allowing the patient to maintain dignity.
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MissusR72, when my Dad needed 3 shifts of caregivers, I used a nationwide Agency. Their 3rd shift employees are required to remain awake throughout their 8 hour shift. Thus, those employees get their sleep during the day.

I had no problems with anything being taken, nor did I need to install cameras. With cameras you can get the best most honest caregiver in the world, but that person finds the cameras make them nervous.

My boss lost a caregiver that way who had been with his wife [Alzheimer's] for several years. The caregiver left a couple weeks after he installed the cameras, and he had a difficult time trying to find a replacement that his wife would accept.

Imagine if a spouse or a boss installed cameras to "watch" us during the day. No thank you.
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anonymous570188 Feb 10, 2019
True, and I believe me I get that. All I can say if it hadn’t been for the cameras I wouldn’t have been able to give just a polite, “no thank you,” and nothing more, to the caregiving company that sent one girl who put her feet - shoes included - on my mothers expensive dining room table, and the other who laughed at my mom while trying to help her toilet herself. I’m not here to make anybody nervous, I’m a nervous wreck on my own as it is.

This is all really hard to know the right thing to do, and probably one of the most frightening positions to be in. I want to be certain that I can trust a caregiver in a home, sure, but I also want to know that I’ve hired somebody who knows how to comport themselves better than the scuff mark I’m trying to repair and my mom’s upset and embarrassment at someone yelling at her to “pull up your pants yourself I’m not doing it!”

Maybe one day I’ll learn to live with all this guilt with my mom, with the people I’m looking for, with myself, but right now, not so much.
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Another red flag area is medications. I have recently read that aricept is becoming recreational, as horrifying as that is to ponder. I don't know how commonplace, but it happens.

Cameras installed? Inventory of house?
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anonymous570188 Feb 10, 2019
I installed cameras before the day time caregiving started, I’m also installing lock and key doorknobs on a couple of rooms, and her medications will be stored with me - she only takes two, which can be given to her before each caregiver comes. No dementia or anything like that here, mom is very sharp, but she is insistent to stay at home if it costs her every last dime... I can’t imagine how Aricept has become recreational but if it can be thought of it can be done. That truly is horrifying. Thanks for your insight.
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