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My Mom is tired and I can see she is not wanting further emergency intervention. What can I say to help her let go?

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I have read your short post carefully and do not see any mention of her being in assisted living, so I am now wondering where she is living and if she is functioning in life? If she is still able to get about and take care of her basic needs it would seem that she is not ready to pass. Somebody suggested that she may be depressed and as I am very familiar with this condition, I would like to say that I have been suicidal on many occasions. This is a very normal situation with depression. If that is the case she most certainly needs medical intervention and maybe a counselor also. If she belongs to a church perhaps a member could come out to keep her company.

You have said so little I am left to guess as to your mom's situation. However, if she is in hospital or in a nursing home the situation will be quite different. I am an RN and can assure you that when people are ready to pass they stop eating and drinking. There comes a time when it is not advised to push them to eat or drink because that is not helpful. When they have made this decision it is their way of communicating their mind is made up even if they are not able to express this in words.

If this is the case the best support you can give is to be reassuring that she is safe and you will understand if she wants to let go. You, and your family, can really help her by being there in short shifts and being very quiet. Having a lot of people around the bed, fussing with unnecessary care and talking among themselves is very confusing for people and does not make their passing easy.

One thing to be aware of is that people have an uncanny knack of passing when they are alone or with a nurse. So many times I remember the family leaving the room and then the patient giving up. This is not a bad thing. The patient has decided that that is the way they want to go. It may be that they care if the family is hurt or they just may wish this to be a private moment. We shall never know the answer. But, on the other hand, you can't be around all the time and will need to take breaks so if you must go for something to eat and find that she has passed do not be too upset because this may be the way your mom wanted it.

Letting loved ones go is never easy for anybody, but unfortunately dying is just another part of life.. We all have to accept that in the end.

Best wishes to you.
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Your profile says your mom is 88 and resides in independent living - is that correct? What exactly do you mean by helping her let go ... generally someone who is living on their own is nowhere near death, but they may feel as though their best years are behind them and the future isn't worth living... some people spend years - decades - predicting their imminent deaths and wondering why god doesn't take them. I would look for ways improve her quality of life for whatever time she has left after reassuring her that you will continue to be her advocate whatever the future may be.
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oldfletch Aug 18, 2018
Very wish advice there!!! I am there, Now, and your advice has given ole me the,strenght & courage to look for thing BETTER than just sitting in my recliner, watching TV and, maybe sometimes, play around with my laptop!!! I thank you for your, very wise advice here and God Bless You
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You can tell her you love her and thank her for all she has done for you and that you appreciate it so much. You can tell her that you do not want her
to suffer and give her your permission to go when she is ready. Ask her if
there is anything you can do for her. Pray with her and lead her to accept
Jesus' open loving arms. (You will need a box of Kleenex). Be at peace my child and then you can pass that peace to her. If you have siblings, they need to do the same. This will be a very meaningful moment for her. When I did this with my mom, she decided to stay on for a long time but she knows
she is free to go when she chooses. God bless you through this journey.
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you call Hospice.
you stop taking her to the E.R. and you tell her you understand she has to leave you.
you apologize for any of your shortcomings and tell her you tried to do your best for her.
you allow her to stop her medications.
and hopefully, you tell her you love her.
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Artlady 61....
My heart is with you. It is very tough to watch your mother slowly pass from this world....I'm still grieving over my dear, sweet mom. I was her caregiver, and at the end, when she was very weak and only wanted drops of water dripped into her mouth, I set up my station, not to leave her side.
I sincerely hope you and her are saved by Christ. This is the most important decision of any person's life and death. Eternity awaits each and every one of us, but it's up to us to decide which way to go. I say to choose Jesus Christ....which is to receive eternal life with Him in an unknown, geographical location called Heaven. Yes, I said geographical, because it is. By not choosing Christ, we send ourselves to a place apart from God, called Hell.
Choose life! Choose Christ! And live forever with Him.
May God be with you and your precious mother.
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What cwillie says is true. We have no control over when we pass. Some people pass too soon and it’s not fair. Some people pass too young and that’s not fair either.

If you have a religious leader, now may be the time to call upon them. It’s very difficult for you to know what to say to your mother and how to say it.

Is Mom still in Independent Living or is she now in Hospice? If she is still in IL, reassure her that when she is ready to pass, no heroic measure will be taken and her wishes will be respected. Same as if she’s in hospice and the hospice nurse can help with this. However, if she is still in IL and seems to be dwelling on this, I would ask the social worker at the facility if a therapist could come to speak with her.
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oldfletch Aug 18, 2018
Some very good advice there, my friend! !!!!
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Artlady61,
If mom is not eligible for hospice, it can be frustrating for her and family. Years ago, I experienced this with my mom, who at the time was in ICU for 6 months. She did not have a medical POA or a medical directive, so her surgeon called the shots. So first advice is to secure those directives. She needs to provide this information in clear terms to others.

But your comment ("I see that she is not wanting...") that she has not verbally stated that she wants to be noted DNR or even assisted death. Her tiredness may be more depression than a decision that has been considered for all consequences that her death would entail.

I sense that you too are tired of watching mom suffer. I am now a counselor for the grieved and dying so my suggestion is this: seek counseling for yourself. The emotional pain can be overwhelming and cloud your judgement. DON'T say anything. Instead ASK mom to talk to a professional about her wishes and then put them in writing.
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Why does everyone always assume that the sick or dying need to hear about Jesus - this is not a Christian forum.
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Landscapelover Aug 18, 2018
Cwillie,

The first thing that I learned in grief counseling was that I would receive hundreds of comments from people that would probably not all seem appropriate. What I’ve realized is that all of the words of encouragement/advice (and I’m still receiving them) were meant to help me. Everyone’s experience is different in difficult journeys. But, I’ve come to this site in search of help after my mom was diagnosed with Alz until her transition this past Jan. (17 years), and I will forever be grateful for all of the advice/comments here.
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I was helping to care for someone in home hospice. She was ready to go- everyone had said their goodbyes. It still took weeks and weeks. People go when they go. You can't (legally) hurry them along. What we did was concentrate on being. We called it Plan BE. Just be there. Do everything you can for her comfort, emotional and physical. If she says things that are uncomfortable to hear- listen. Don't bat the comments away. Hear them. Sit with the comments in silence. Let her say what she needs to say. Teepa Snow suggests saying "I know it's hard. I hate this for you."
Good luck to you. It's hard.
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I took my mom (88 yrs old) in to ER via EMS with what I thought was dehydration. She was diagnosed with final stages of Leukemia. Didn’t even know she had cancer. My mom always had a fight in her to live, so I would never discuss transitioning with her. Always was WITH her and engaged her. However, after I took her in, and doctors told us that she had weeks, I could see a difference in her. She stayed asleep, but I knew she could hear. I asked all of my siblings to come and see her so that she could hear their voices. I still did not discuss transitioning, but we all took shifts and would sit next to her bed round the clock for a week with soft music playing, rubbing her hands and arms. I DID say to her “we are all okay, and I will always make sure that we are all okay.” The next day, she was transferred to hospice and passed before the next day. Of course, I had been given a time frame for her by doctors of her final stages. However, it was still so very hard as no one knew she was even ill. I do agree that no one knows the exact day/time of our transition; however, there were personal things/concerns that I knew of my mother, and I wanted to always keep her comfortable and at ease...even until the end. My prayers are that you receive the right words, at the right times, to comfort your loved one and ease your burden of care.
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