My grandma has dementia, we just recently lost grandpa. The kids took GMA immediately to a NH and dropped her off. Any advice? - AgingCare.com

My grandma has dementia, we just recently lost grandpa. The kids took GMA immediately to a NH and dropped her off. Any advice?

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Didn't let her go to the funeral. Said no one could go visit her for 2 weeks. But here's the kicker no one is her POA she has not been evaluated as incompetent yet. Every day 2 of the kids call and say the nursing home said grandma is having it bad so now another week no one can go visit? We went once and grandma was doing very well. The nursing asked us to leave they said per the kids request? We talked to the D.o.n. who informed us that without any POA no one can tell us that? But yet everyday still can't go visit. 2 kids say no and the nurse asks us to leave? Thinking about getting a lawyer involved as none of these kids or the home seem to have grandma's best interest at heart. I am the one who spent time with grandma before all this happened, her kids were never around. Now that grandpa is gone 2 of her kids want to step up and play the boss. Please give me some advise I'm starting to get very upset for grandma and for me.

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CM has laid it all out nicely for you!

One thing, do Google "showtiming". Folks with dementia can often "hold it together" for the time spent at a doctor's appointment, having a visitor or being evaluated for competence if the session doesn't last for more than say, 45 minutes to an hour. And then after the visitor leaves, they are agitated, delusional and in a rage. The relative who hasn't seen the dementia patient in 6 months says "I don't see what you're talking about, she's fine".

Very frustrating for the folks who are doing the heavy lifting.

I would also ask you to question, if grandma has a dementia diagnosis, if everything you "know" to be true is from her lips, or if you have independent confirmation. Dementia patients might tell someone they haven't been seen by their children in "months" when in fact they stop in every day.

Just some observations from someone who has been around the block.....
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So you patiently waited two weeks, as per advice, then another week; then you popped in to see her, the visit was going well, but the nursing staff had standing instructions that grandma wasn't to have visitors until she was fully settled and asked you to leave. Is that about the run of it?

I commend your responsible and co-operative approach. I sympathise with your frustration.

Can you wait a bit longer?

As BB asks, you need to do a bit of fact-finding first. There must have been a needs assessment and care plan carried out before your grandmother was admitted to this NH. What you want to do is find out who's making what decisions and how you can negotiate your way round them.

Things to remember:

• the loss of your grandfather was bad enough
• the loss of your grandmother's primary caregiver really upset the family apple cart
• it is natural for people under stress to want to make life simple, which is why they rushed grandma into the NH so fast her feet didn't touch the ground
• it is not *necessarily* the wrong thing to keep your grandmother in this sort of "quarantine" until she is well settled in the NH's routine
• you are absolutely right, that grandma's best interests are paramount. Just don't be too quick to assume that other people aren't trying just as hard as you to protect her. Though I can certainly understand how it might not look like it.

Delicate question. Is there any possibility - don't bite me, I'm just asking - that your aunt/uncle(s) might question your role in your grandparents' life and/or your motives for wanting to spend time with your grandmother?

To me, based just on what you've said, it sounds as though her children look on her as a problem to be solved, whereas you look on her as a person you love and want to spend time with. It must be heart-breaking for you. But from their point of view, if you make a nuisance of yourself they might look for a way of "solving" you, too.

To get through this, be canny: keep calm, be polite, work with the professionals, don't get provoked into conflict. And it might be no bad thing to get a legal overview of the situation, as long as you know a *really* reputable lawyer.
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Who signed the admissions papers? Is someone grandma's guardian?
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