How do I properly care for my Father-in-law in my home?

Follow
Share

I cannot keep up on everything around here. Monday thru Friday I am the sole caretaker. On weekends my husband pitches in some. I am exhausted, depressed, have anxiety now and my health is failing. I know the typical answer everyone gives, is put him in a home. I don't think my husband takes me seriously enough. This is too much for me. My house stinks like urine, I have lost my only living room. I spend most of my time in the bedroom now. We have a 3 bedroom house and a den. My 19 yo son sleeps there. My 17 yo son has one room and my 10 yo son is in the other one. I would give up that room(10 yo) but my FIL insist in sleeping in the living room either on the couch or in a recliner. He has ruined both of them because he leaks thru his diaper. He is up peeing all night long. If he uses his urinal he ends up peeing on the floor. He never makes it in the toilet either. I have to dress him, bathe him and make his coffee and meals. He Pretty much does not do anything for himself except feed himself. So on top of all this when he came to live with us so did my BIL(He is Developmentally Delayed but High Functioning). He didn't want to live alone. There is just no room for everyone and I am going crazy. I just wish I knew what to do in lessening the load and keeping the house cleaner and smelling fresher. Or is there anything I can do about him leaking thru his diaper. He does have dimentia. I have struggled with that because he can be intensly mean and combative. Basically our life is turned upside down and sideways, and on hold. I feel like there is no end. Or, like there is no goal or something to look forward to. We are just at a stand still. What do I do???? I hope this makes sense!

Thanks for reading,
Gena Kay

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
4

Answers

Show:
It makes perfect sense, Gena Kay. I mean what you wrote makes sense -- not necessarily the situation itself!

How kind of you and your husband to be willing to take in his father and brother. These poor souls need help, through no fault of their own, and it is understandable that family would want to provide that help. Two gold stars to each of you for good intentions!

But good intentions and profound love often have to be supplemented with practical measure to really be effective.

What is the financial situation? I ask because that is often an important part of the "practical measures." Is FIL on Medicaid? is BIL on Disability? Does FIL have assets. Monthly income? Is he paying you for room and board? I would urge you to apply for any benefits either of them are legitimately entitled to. and charge them for their room and board and care. NOT because you are selfish people -- clearly you are not -- but because you have more options if you have some money to work with.

Next, is BIL home all day, or does he have a job? If he is home, how much is he able to help? It may help if FIL were gone for part of the day on a regular basis. Here is where having money or benefits comes in. There are adult day health programs (day care) that will pick up and return participants to their homes. The usually offer breakfast and a hot lunch. There is opportunity to interact with other adults and to participate in activities. (A good center will not force participation, but make it available.) My husband interacted more with the staff than with other participants but still it was someone besides me all day every day.

If FIL is eligible of in-home benefits, or if he can afford to pay for some, bring in a housekeeper. Maybe if just for immediate family lived there you could get by with every-other week cleaning. Under the circumstances you should have a twice-a-week cleaner. The housekeeper can also do laundry. (Or maybe BIL can do some of this once a week, and a paid housekeeper the other time.)

Nobody should live in an environment that smells like pee. The couch and chair are ruined, but maybe you can salvage them for FIL's continued use. Do a search on removing urine smell in mattress. You'll find lots of advice, and some of it will probably work. Then keep on top of cleaning messes promptly. When my husband used a urinal at his bedside I used a bed pad under it, to protect the carpet and make it easy for me to quickly throw it in the washer with bleach.

But all of these are temporary measures at best. They can help while you are making plans to solve the basic issue: Your house is not big enough for two extra adults.

Your heart is in the right place, but your house is too small!

So ... where can FIL and BIL live together and get the supervision and help they need, where you can continue to be part of their care team but without total disruption to your family life? Maybe a small group home. Maybe Assisted Living. More likely for FIL, maybe a skilled nursing home. Get that housekeeper on board and use some of your time to start researching the options.

Your life has been turned upside down and sideways and on hold. Your generosity to your FIL is not a kindness to your children. Something has to change. Make the small changes that can get you through the next few months, but start working on the big change that is sad but necessary -- a new home for FIL.

By the way, your profile doesn't mention that FIL has dementia. That is the biggest practical factor in setting up his care. Dementia gets worse. He needs to be somewhere they understand dealing with dementia and where his "meanness" won't be harmful to youngsters.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Does your FIL have other children that could share in his care or financially provide funds to pay for an in home caregiver during the week? If FIL kept his home it might be they could move back with daily in home services. This is just too much for one person to handle 24/7 (as you now know).

Has FIL been to a doctor recently? Maybe there are meds to help his attitude. Request an in home evaluation to find out what services he is eligible to receive.

As far as leaking; we found Molicare brand absorbed the largest quanitity. Best price at Walmart online includes free shipping. You can use disposable bed pads on all furniture or washable rubber lined sheeting.

If he is already combative and mean, it is probably time to look into nh or other options. What kind of life is this for your family and children? The children and you are your husband's primary responsibility. We should see our parents are well cared for and we can do that without totally wrecking havoc on our own families.

Is it possible to find a group home in your area for the BIL?

Best wishes! You have my blessings to give your hubby a good pop on the head prior to a real serious conversation.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Your husband doesn't take you seriously enough? Meaning that you've sat him down and said 'I didn't sign up to be full time caregiver to your dad and brother"? If you've had that conversation and he's not hearing you ... what do you propose? Leaving? Going to see a counselor.? It sounds like fil is well past the point where he'd get better care in a SNF.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

first, you need to see an occupational therapist and have him a valuated for what is capable of doing. Second, you need to sit down with your family and determine how you going to care for him and who has what is a possibility of this day to day care. Do you need to make a hard decision if this is what you really want to do and go from there.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.