I am the caregiver for my 85 year old mum with dementia and 89 year old father with a weak heart.
Given their age, I think they are in pretty good shape. My mum has no short term memory and some delusions (she thinks my father has other women around). My dad uses a cane and gets tired very easily. They don't need help dressing, washing or eating and get around pretty well.
From conversations when they were healthy and younger, and also now in their lucid moments, they have both made it clear to me that they do not want any special medical procedures to extend their lives which I understand and agree with. Their primary care doctor also signed their advanced directives stating so.
I bring them to all their medical appointments and give them their meds. But there seems to always be more appointments "just to be cautious". Like my mum had a scan and it showed kidney and lung nodules. We followed up with CT/MRI scans and specialist appointments, but both doctors said it's probably nothing and do scans for a couple of more years to follow up. My mum is having more and more trouble following instructions which can make appts challenging unless the staff is v patient. My dad has extremely bad macular degeneration and the last retina specialist said there is nothing he can do, but still wants to see him every 6 months.
They really don't like going to so many medical appointments. Do I just not bring them? I feel like I'm neglecting them. My father told the primary care Dr that he doesn't want to go to any of the referral appointments and the Dr said he respected that and made note of it.
I understand not wanting extreme measures taken in the event of heart failure or something, but is not bringing them to medical appointments the same thing? Am I being neglectful in not pushing them to follow through? To be honest, I'd rather my mum pass away of something before her dementia gets severe.
I'm so confused and have feelings of sadness, anger, frustration all mixed together.
Thanks for listening.