He is 81, she is 80 & even though they live where they can get help she still is up with him all night and then wonders why she is so exhausted. She is his security blanket & he touches her all night & can't go to sleep with out her. He wants to go bed at 7 pm. Then he gets up to go to the bathroom but he has accidents and makes a mess and may fall changing his depend. She wants to go to her doctor so he can give her something to fix it and I really think it is just because she is so worn out. But she shoots down absolutely every solution I offer her. Go sleep down the hall for a few nights so you can rest. (No, it would be unfamiliar and she couldn't rest well.) Have him stay with us (No, it is too much trouble). Move him to an Alzheimer's unit (no, that would kill him). But I'm afraid what she is currently doing is actually going to kill her. Does anyone have any suggestions? Would my dad get used to sleeping by himself at night? He does worry greatly about her & I do worry this would cause a progression of his disease. But I also worry she might die from exhaustion and then he will die anyway because if she isn't around at all that would be the end of him. Thank you for your help.
It is very difficult to think positively about options and suggestions when you are knackered and heart-broken, and none of the options is terribly attractive anyway.
But you are right to be worried for both of them. The worst of both worlds would be your mother's "abandoning" your father by dying; and I wish I could say it's only a risk. The statistics on caregiver health are frightening anyway. What the statistics are on the non-AD half of a couple dying before his/her spouse of the same age, I dread to think; and the aftermath I have seen for myself, and it's tragic.
Does this facility also offer Memory Care? If it does, I should push as hard as you kindly can for respite breaks, at least, or an MCU trial. Your mother needs some unbroken sleep before there's a hope that she'll be able to think practically about her next steps; and if your father is the one to move to a very slightly different location where he will be expertly cared for overnight maybe that could work.
Maybe your mom would be open to assistance overnight. An overnight caregiver. A caregiver could come from 8pm-8am. The caregiver could stay in another room, watch tv, play on her phone, read a book she brings along, and be there when your dad needs assistance at night. Your mom can sleep with him but when he gets up in the middle of the night the caregiver will tend to him instead of your mom. Your mom can stay right where she is and after her husband has been cleaned up he comes back to bed and they go back to sleep.
It would take some getting used to on your mom's part. She might be able to accept a caregiver in the house overnight but letting the caregiver do the work might be challenging at first. This is normal. However, once your mom wholeheartedly allows the caregiver to tend to your dad in the middle of the night she might become grateful for the brief respite.
move closer to you for help and visiting now and then too.
Let dr know what’s going on in advance.
Maybe dr would prescribe sleeping pill for mom and or dad. maybe an extra pad could be put on dad. Maybe you could go to home for a few nights and take dad to bathroom before he wakes mom. Maybe you could hire caretaker a couple of nights to help out each week so she could get rest. Lots of things to try.
I tried putting myself in your mother's shoes. If I were her and I really loved and cared for my husband more than myself, would I leave him so that I could get better physically, and let him suffer both physically and mentally? The answer would be no.
They both need more help, but they have to be moved together and stay together, at least for now. To where? I don't know. Nursing home?
Other posters with more experience should be able to offer better suggestions.