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My mom was diagnosed with dementia about 15 years ago. She is 77. My dad died in 2007. My sister and I realized immediately that although my mom was high functioning, that my dad had been living in denial. It was apparent that my mom could not live be herself. My mom was viciously resentful towards her "kids" trying to control her life. She still fights tooth and nail to persuade anyone who will listen that nothing is wrong with her and that we have put her away. When my dad died, we hired 24/7 live in care, to help to keep her safely in her home. After a very expensive year and her home flooding, we took the opportunity to move her to a very nice, assisted living/memory care facility in our home town. I had always thought that she would come to live with me in south Florida, but after a sample extended stay, we succumbed to keeping her closer to home. She still had friends and some family visiting. Moving her into the ALF was a horrible experience. Once there, she seemed to adjust and although she likes her space and the people treat her nicely, she now only complains that she is in jail. My sister begrudgingly handles all of mom's neccesities, except meds. I take care of mail ordering meds. My sister lives about an hour away. Due to my mom's mean spiritedness towards my sister, my sister spends as little time as possible with my mom. It is a really sad situation. When my sister makes the effort to spend quality time with my mom, it usually ends up miserably for my sister. My mom waits until my sister leaves the room to bad mouth her to anyone and everyone include my teenage neices. As time has moved on mom's friends have quit seeing her. She still gets a monthly visit from her childhood friend who is also my dad's sister. Her estranged brother sees her occasionally. My daughter who was in college near my mom, was visiting a couple of times a month and I get to see her maybe twice a year. My daughter has graduated and moved out of state. I use to fly her to my home in south Florida, but that trip became hard since the airlines quit flying direct to my town. Finally to my question. I suggested to my sister that we move her to Florida. My husband and I would both like to be able to spend more time with my mom. I think my sister would be happier. She thinks that it would be impossible for my mom to adjust to new surroundings. She also thinks that it would cause her disease to progress. Please share your thoughts. Am I just being seflish? Would it cause irrepairable damage to my mom? I think sooner than later would be better. I don't want to do harm.

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Your sister has a valid point in that another move may be hard on your mom. Yet, you also have a point in that your mom has fewer and fewer people visiting her where she is and you may provide more attention.
No solution is going to be easy. I certainly wouldn't say you were selfish, but I do think that there's a risk in moving her. In the end, you need to talk it through with your family, maybe talk to the social worker at the ALF as well, and then decide. Everyone is different, so there's no right or wrong answer.
I wish I could just say yes or no, but I can't. It's a tough situation with consequences either way. Take time to decide, then stand by your decision unless something drastic changes you mind. Good luck,
Carol
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Since she is already in assisted living center, i don't think the transition will be as detrimental as if she was still in her own home. The situation will still be the same rules, times for meals, assistance with bathing etc. she doesn't leave area and will either have her own room or share. I'd say if you want your mom closer and spend more time with her, do it. There is something to be said when it's too late and regrets we live with are whole lives. Do your homework, talk to social workers there and see what she is capable of, talk to your mom. Most importantly check out the facilities you are considering placing her in Fla. what doctors will be seen by etc. you don't want a nitemare. I hoope you can find peace with your decisions either way.
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I'm in Florida and I did move mom north by 100 miles. She was in Palm Beach County and moving her to Brevard County saved us thousands of dollars in ALF care because of the area. The staff is amazing and truly care. My spouse and I spent almost 3 hours on three different days checking out the facility. Many, many things the facility provides is perfect for Dementia patients and well thought out..mom has had more socialization and activity now at the alf compared to her isolation home alone. The doctors ordered her meds be administered to take away the mistakes mom would make. This also gave her more socialization. We are very blessed to have her nearby now as she has been in and out of the hospital with illnesses and we were able to visit as often as desired--which by the way--please take days off...good for mom in meeting others as well as healthy for you. Blessings and prayers to all in these fleeting moments..
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Ms Bursack is absolutely right when she said no solution is going to be easy. I also agree with cdo4fun that at least it's only a change of building and not lifestyle, going from 1 facility to another instead of out of a home.
Whether or not it causes her condition to deteriorate or shortens her life is unknown at this time, but it could improve the qulity of her life to have family closer. My vote would be for the move. You already know the potential cons of the move and are ready to handle them.
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By moving your Mom closer to you where you can see her more will be a blessing for both of you.
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I have had to move mom SIX times in 7 years. First nursing home neglected her to badly that she had lost weight and was down to 90 pounds. They kept telling me excuses....about why the great weight loss. She only weighted140 to begin with. THEN, I'd sneak in at all times of day and night to "check" on her and found her laying in a fetal position in bed with RINGS of pee that had dried and then pee again that had dried and again. THAT was when I immediately took her out and back to live with me. She had been there almost one year. FIVE more nursing homes, I've tried ....always moving her back IN with ME until I could not longer take her abuse (she still thinks it's ok to hit me and call me names as when I was a kid). NO HELP from EITHER sibling during all of these years. She always adjusted just fine from one NH to my house..then to another NH (until they neglected AND abused her) and back to MY house...6 times in 7 years. Never had a problem with adjustment. She has late stage Alz, Bipolar, personality disorder and host of other dx that I won't go into. She always LOVED living with me...until she would get MEAN and hateful again. It was me who couldn't deal witht that behavior even with the 18 meds she's been on since her early 30's. Elders do want to be around family if at all possible. Now, she has been in this most recent NH since March and even tho it is 16 miles one way to go see her, I still do..always. I have no money now...awaiting disability determination for PTSD and Panic Disorder plus degenerative disc disease. I can only make it to see her once a week now instead of 3-4 times weekly. I take care of her feet, toenails, buy her shoes, clothing, take her to appts., to visit relatives, etc. NOBODY has ever been to visit her. I'm glad she is not living with me anymore because I just cannot handle it anymore. She is always wet...through her pamper, her pants and down to her socks AND shoes...all SOAKING wet when I get there to visit her. First thing I do is go clean her up which takes about 45 minutes. I get SO frustrated with the NH because they don't take care of her like I do when she lives with me BUT...I just can't do it anymore. SHe's 76 now and just walks the halls non-stop from morning till bed time. Even with the 18 meds per day....nothing changes. Her meds alone are 1000 per month. Thank GOD for medicaid AND Medicare. The NH also takes all of her SS check but 60 per month. But what is most sad is that NOBODY....her kids, grandkids, etc....EVER call or go visit her and they are all within 10-30 min from her. I am the only one she knows..the only one who has EVER cared for her. Sometimes, I wonder why she keeps hanging on.
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