Follow
Share

My dad is 83 and he and my mom live together. She has vascular dementia. He has always done whatever she said to keep peace. Now the dementia is causing her to be compulsive and urgent. He does whatever she asks. I think he's to old for this. He'll drive her 100 miles to visit someone that isn't expecting her, take her to 8 stores looking for a certain non existent item, and do excessive yard work, etc.. Now she sometimes doesn't recognize him, then demands that he not let that "other stanger" back in the house. He just agrees. How much is too much for an old man?

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
You are concerned for your dad and rightfully so. Your ability to override mom is nil. As you've described it, he has spent his life trying to make her happy and he is not likely to stop now. Try not to nag him but try to be there for him. To support him in any way you can. Tell him you are concerned that he be around for her. Ask him to get a checkup. To make sure that he's in good shape. Ask him what he would want you to do when something happens to him. Ask him if the paperwork is done that would allow you to do what he wants. If you can work through this conversation you might find that partnering with him to care for mom is the best way you can take care of him. He'll be less likely to try to hide problems from you. He'll be happy to see you instead of dreading another confrontation. And, of course, something ( a health event, a wreck, an accident) will eventually happen. It always does. But for now, its still his life to live.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Elderly folks are notoriously independent. Unfortunately, they don't see the need to change the situation. Your dad probably won't be open to move to assisted living or putting her in a memory care facility. Are you open to them moving in with you? (I really wouldn't recommend doing that-it will put a tremendous strain on your family.) Would he allow a caregiver to come in a few hours a week? Could a family member become a "reliever" for your dad? Could someone "adult-sit" your mom in their home once in awhile?
I'll bet your dad has always accommodated your mom's wishes and I'm not sure that he'll stop now. Can someone check in with him to see if they can drive your mom around instead of him driving her? Can you sign her up for a dementia daycare, if one is in your area? Have you contacted your local senior center for information? They are a wealth of information.
Can you contact HIS doctor and inform him/her of your dad caregiving your mom, asking if (s)he would intervene and counsel your dad, suggesting he get relief. Sometimes the elderly will listen to a doctor but no one else.
Unfortunately, freqflyer is right, you can't intervene with your dad's way of doing things, unless you can prove him incompetent.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Tell him there is nothing to be proud of in leaving his sick wife a helpless widow. He gets more help, and he dials back on the wild goose chases, or he will die and she will experience bewilderment and fear that he would not have wished on his worst enemy.

What he is getting right is the just agreeing with her about the strangers. Never argue with dementia, it's a waste of breath. But that doesn't mean following all the orders, it just means ignoring them or diverting your mother's attention from them.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

MichiganOwl, my parents were that way, too. Dad was more than happy to go outside to do yard work... got him out of the house, fresh air, but he was a fall risk so numerous times he was face down in the dirt... thank goodness he had a sense of humor "darn weed got the best of me".

I believed secretly my Dad was ready to downsize to senior living but my Mom refused to move. I would show her brochures of lovely 55+ communities, and she would say "maybe in a couple of years".... HELLO, you and Dad are in your mid-to-late 90's.... guess Mom would move when she is 100 :P

Did your parents have siblings that lived until a very old age in their own homes? How about their own parents? My Dad's Mom lived on her own until 91, even breaking a leg at 90 on the stairs didn't change her mind about moving. She just moved her bedroom to the main level bedroom.

Sadly, sometimes we just need to wait for that dreaded telephone call that someone needs to go to the ER for a serious health issue or serious fall.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Yes too proud, and unwilling to spend the money.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This is far and beyond too much. A person in their 80's only has half the energy they had when they were in their 40's. Your Dad is such a sweetheart to help your Mom with anything she want.

Do your parents have enough savings to budget having a caregiver come to the house to give your Dad a break? Or are your parents too proud to bring in help. My parents were "we can manage" but in total denial that they couldn't.

Time for them to downsize to a smaller residence... I know, easier said then done. I couldn't get my parents out of their house, even with them being fall risks. But it is worth a try. Could your parents afford to move to senior living? Depending on location, places then to run $4k to $7k per month... yes, sticker shock.

I would be worried that something could happen to your Dad. Caregiving can make someone physically and emotionally crash and burn. Between 30-40% of caregivers die leaving behind their love one that they were caring. Time to get on the thinking caps.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

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