My husband and I care for my parents both 89 in our home. My Mother has stopped walking and has become lazy with hygiene. Advice?

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She seems otherwise happy but sleeps more during the day and will not go outside. Getting her to the doctors or to a restaurant is an exercise in patience as she will do nothing to help herself. She has some dementia but says she is happy in "her little corner on the sofa". They have a nice space in our home occupying the master bedroom with an ensuite and have a nice living room. My dad is frustrated with her and they do not spend as much time together as he likes to sit out and enjoy the nice weather, he reads and uses a computer daily. She sits and watches TV and falls asleep. Her health is good, she has a pacemaker but her blood pressure is excellent. Her attitude drives me crazy, she will not participate in anything or even read anymore. I thought she was depressed but apparently that is not the case. She has always had a lazy way about her but now that we are all living in the same house, I remember! She never lifts a finger and her expectations are huge. She uses a walker but could get by with a cane but she does like to play the part of being feeble. She is strong and is becoming aggressive towards my dad. Sometimes I detect a very unclean odor and know she needs to shower. I have helped her with this on occasion, done her hair for her, her nails and helped with her dressing. I am running on empty these days and it is affecting my relationship. My husband has been wonderful but we all have our limits. I have asked them both about going to a seniors center to mix with others seniors like them but my mother will not leave the house unless she is forced and says "maybe one day but I don't know which day". To be away overnight I have to ask my sister to come to town, she lives 3 hours away. My brother lives closer but he works full time and we see little of him. It is stressful. Some days I feel so alone and depressed by the situation and blame myself because they are my parents. We both want to help them but my mother makes this so hard. She is manipulative and has always been a bit of a hypochondriac. She has been lucky all her life as she has been taken care of by my dad and never had to work outside the home. Not like my sister and I who were both single parents with all the associated difficulties. I know that is why I find her attitude so hard to deal with. I have offered all kinds of things that might interest her from knitting to teaching her to use the computer but she doesn't want to. Please give me some suggestions Thank you. By the way, my husband and I are both in our late 60's too!

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I'll just mention that dementia is a very "real" ailment.
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Thank you for the input Sunnygirl1, I have managed to get some assistance for my mother and a therapist to help with some exersizes for her. I am also working towards getting someone in to give her a pedicure. Also I will persure getting in a cleaner to assist with bathroom cleaning, which is constant under the circumstances. As for personal therapy, I am not too interested in digging up the past and rehashing all the angst from an earlier time. Intellectually I am perfectly aware of what history has affected me and know nothing can change it. Everyone has some kind of baggage. I prefer to just rationalize what is and go forward. One never forgets but we have to learn to move on. I realize that having my parents here just puts the memories back on the table. Thanks again everyone for their information and suggestions.
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Witsend66, I'm not sure why you say there is a huge difference in dementia and Alzheimers. I would read a lot about these conditions.

I would strongly encourage you to have your mom evaluated for both physical and mental decline. Perhaps, getting a proper diagnosis can help you get more support or benefits to help with her care.

Dementia, that can be caused by Alzheimers and other things like Vascular dementia, etc., renders the brain incapable of functioning normally. Even if a person was lazy and selfish their entire life, when they get dementia, the brain is damaged and they are not capable of behaving normally. The past has to be put aside and their needs taken care of. Since, you say there is much baggage, I would try to get some counseling to help you with that. And it sounds like there is so much work taking care of her that you need help with that too. I wish the best with that. You are wise to seek out information and support.
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my mother is 74 with no REAL physical impairments. She is getting lazier by the HOUR living in my house. She has her own area upstairs and she informed me a couple of weeks ago she has NEVER even cleaned the floor 1 time since she moved up there ( a year and a half worth of filth on my floor I guess ). GROSS. She takes baths when she feels like it sometimes weeks apart ( when she hurt her arm she went TEN WEEKS without taking a bath). She dosent get dressed half the time she hasn't cooked anything in months. She thinks walking down the steps once a day is exercise. She loves sympathy and has gotten down right pathetic. I am losing respect for her by the hour ( although I have very little respect to begin with. but that's a different thread ). Its disgusting to watch a perfectly healthy woman just sit around rotting in a chair while so any other seniors live life to the fullest even with REAL ailments.. I am watching her rotting away before my very eyes. And NO ONE knows this but me and my hubby. her other daughters ( there's 5 of us but some haven't see her in more than a year now and are just phone in daughters ) have NO CLUE what she's turned into because they don't ask me and if you listen to my mom you would think the whole world is rainbows.. Oh well, just another thing I have learned from her........don't turn into a useless glob and let your daughter and her husband take care of everything you should be taking care of yourself while you actually CAN......because it causes resentment.......BIG TIME. but theres nothing I can do . USE IT OR LOSE IT , and she really is starting to lose it. but that's what she chooses is to become pathetic so it is what it is. I just wish it wasn't happening under MY ROOF.
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Witsend, I find that those of us with baggage are often the ones who (mistakenly in my opinion) try too hard second guess and browbeat ourselves into doing caregiving that most "kids" with more normal relationships would not attempt.

You sound very, very burnt out to me. I urge you to let go at least a bit. If mom wants to sit, so be it. Yes, she's going to end up in a nursing home and/or memory care. It's not your fault, neither is it hers.
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Yes Babalou, I get that. I am done trying to cope with guilt for my thoughts and trying to reconcile the why's of behaviour. There is too much history. I will continue to do my best until I can't anymore. The "lazy" comes with lots of baggage, so forgive me if I sound harsh. My mother is up and down with her cognitive behaviours, but basically she is aware of her choices and I try very hard to sit and engage her with her care. She has early dementia, not Alzeimers. There is a huge difference.
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Witsend, I'm going to be really blunt, so forgive me in advance. If you are still using the words "lazy" and "obstinate" in the same sentence as "my mother's", you are not understanding one iota of how broken her brain is.

I was fortunate enough the last time my mom was hospitalized for a fall to see a cat scan of her brain. There is more space than matter at this point. She still seems quite sharp at times, but she can't put two thoughts together. Your mother has lost the motivation to "do" and wouldn't be able to explain it to you. Please, please, for your sake but especially for your mom's , please stop thinking in terms of lazy.
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Thanks again for all the useful information. It is good to know others who are experiencing similar things. It is my first time on this site and I have never been to another. I do realize that with dementia, life changes and I have researched the progress it takes. I fully support my mothers journey into nowhere land and understand what will happen, it is just her laziness that concerns me and her unwillingness to move. Her obstinency is like meeting the hoover dam! Also her unwillingness to care for herself. My. Mother was social and enjoyed her friends. Although many have passed on, there are still people in her life that she now has no interest in, including family, grandchildren, etc. she is also reluctant to see a dentist and look after her teeth, what is left of them. She has a partial denture and she says all is well. She eats between meal s and spoils her appetite for dinner many times. I am moving the cookie jar to another spot. Thank you to the person who mentioned the snacking spot, it gave me the idea, it should encourage movement if she wants a treat. Everyone has good ideas and suggestions and it all helps. I am very grateful for all the help I can get. Thankyou to everyone.
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My mom has never been a social person. After my father passed away and she began to have some health issues, she became increasingly isolated in her suburban home. The great thing about the Independent Living facility that she went to was that all of the socialization and acidity was right outside her door, and she knew how to get to a bathroom quickly. Familiarity with the facility and proximity to toilets becomes of paramount importance when you are elderly. Mom can't explain to you why she doesn't want to go out, but I really doubt it's laziness if she has a dementia diagnosis.
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When dementia is progressing, I don't think it's really a choice by the patient to be unsocial or to give up on things. Their brain is not working properly. Their body declines too. I hope that people realize this and that blaming the patient is rarely beneficial.

It sounds like her husband is still able to function and socialize. I bet that watching her decline must be very difficult for him. Eventually, she may not even know who you or the other family members are. I would anticipate that becoming totally dependent on her caregivers is certain with dementia. I don't know of any cases where that does not happen.
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