I moved my mother into our home when she could no longer care for herself. She has dementia and has been with us for three years. I live with my husband and adult son. Fortunately, my mom has enough savings that we can afford a caregiver whenever needed, as well as enough money to help cover living costs (food, utilities, rent, etc.). She is mostly in good spirits, walks and talks, laughs, enjoys being with the family. Recently, my husband has expressed a desire to have her placed in a nursing home. He feels burdened and inconvenienced by her. I feel that placing her in a home will cost me on multiple levels: physically (having to leave our home throughout the week to visit with her), emotionally (she does poorly in a nursing home setting), and psychologically (I feel responsible for being a loving daughter- and just thinking about it, brings me to tears). I know that my husband feels the stress in our relationship (which we had well before my mother moved in) and believes that it will be better with her not living here. I feel that putting her in a home is against my value system while she is still doing relatively well, and I will resent him if I do it under this pressure.

I'd love some feedback!

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I am in your husband’’s situation. My mil has lived next door to us for six years. We have someone come in daily to bathe her but we do everything else. She suffers from dementia and has NO short term memory. It is easy to take care of her. However, all she does is sit and she is lonely. We are going to put her in adult daycare. We are fortunate in that she has money.
I sympathize with your husband. We have three children. One is grown and living twelve hours away. The two younger ones are headed off to college. We will now be empty nesters. However, we cannot go anywhere without finding respite care.
I am also angry and bitter. There have been so many times this past six years that my kids and I have missed out n stuff with my husband because he had to take care of her. He missed something important to my daughter and I apologized to her. She responded with,”It’s ok Mom. Did checked out a long time ago: when Nonna moved in with us.” That burned a hole in my heart. It has hurt my relationship with my husband. I am angry with him. It has hurt his relationship w his siblings. We are always asking for help. One son has informed us he is not her caregiver or our respite care.
My point is that although it might be easy to have your Mom living with you, it might not be what is best for your husband.
Every family has its own needs and way of doing things. There is no one easy answer.
Good luck!
Helpful Answer (16)

It doesn’t sound from your description your mom needs a NH as that is for people with skilled nursing needs and greater assistance with ADL. An assisted living might be dad loved his place. Had activities and bingo, made friends. He had vascular dementia but only needed help with medications.
Sounds like you as a couple might benefit from an objective person such as a counselor to meet with to discuss both sides openly and reach a solution.
Moving her to AL would be a co promise if it’s affordable. You can visit and meet her needs and wants, take her out and bring her to your home to visit.
What are your values towards your marriage? That’s a question you need to balance with the other value you mention. Your marriage and husband should come first but if it doesn’t then I would say you two have other issues to work out.
Helpful Answer (13)

Right now your Mother sounds pretty high functioning. What happens in 6 months or a year when she is no longer in good spirits, walks, laughs or enjoys being with family?Is your house set up for someone using a walker or wheelchair? do you have carpet?, stairs?, a large enough bathroom that you will be able to be there with her to shower her? is the shower easy to get into or do you have to step into a tub or over a showerpan? (If you have a master bedroom bath that might be the last straw if your husband has to share it with his MIL.) are your toilets ADA height?
You word your question saying "I moved my mother into our home..." did you have a discussion with your family about this before you made the decision?
I wonder is part of the reluctance to move her to Memory Care or if at this point would she qualify and do well in Assisted Living that you are depending on her income for household expenses? there are 4 adults living in the house, how many are contributing to the expenses?

I know from a personal point of view if I were living in my child's home if I were causing any stress on the marriage I would not want that. While I would not want to be "put" someplace hopefully I would accept that AL or Memory Care would be better for my child and his or her family.
If you really can not place your Mom then getting caregivers in more often, you say you can afford them whenever you need them. I had caregivers 4 or 5 hours a day 5 days a week the last part of my Husbands life and prior to that I had them 3 days a week and previous to that I had him in adult day care. Adult Day Care might also be an option for your Mom at this point.
Sorry if I sound so hard nosed on this or mean but you also have to take your Husbands feelings into consideration.
Helpful Answer (13)

Are you an only child? You've had your mother for three years. Perhaps it is someone else's turn?

If it comes down to it, would you choose your mother over your husband?
Helpful Answer (12)

We all promised to take care of our loved ones. But taking care of them sometimes, many times, means we accept that we are not equipped to do that job in the BEST WAY FOR THEM. Sometimes, you have to love the person more than the guilt you are feeling -- very very hard to do, but may need to be done. Just do it for them, not because you think it will save your marriage. Be honest with yourself about that. If things in the marriage still go south, you will have even more guilt.
Helpful Answer (11)
Well said!!
Tinder, you have made up your mind from the sounds of it. There is nothing any of us can say that will help you to keep an open mind. Your husband doesn't want your mom there any longer and it really does not matter the reasons.

Couples therapy would help, but I would suggest that you seek individual therapy that will help you to better understand your husband's thoughts and feelings about this. Why are you being so stubborn and unfeeling? There is something else going on.

You said mom was in skilled nursing for three months? What had happened that she needed nursing level care? Skilled nursing is not at all like memory care. There are activities, many opportunities to socialize and make friends so she will not need you as much. Maybe that is what you are afraid of? No one can care for mom like you can? You are right, but the staff at a memory care facility will figure it out. They have to do this all the time.

Why would you even want to visit daily? Once a week is plenty and will allow you to reclaim part of YOUR life that seems to have gone by the wayside. What did you used to do before mom? Wouldn't you like to do more of the things you enjoy?

Are you trying to show your children what is expected of them when you need the help? Would you really want your children to provide for your care and lose their lives because of you? You are showing them how difficult care is especially when one spouse no longer wants your mom living with him.

What you should understand is that there is an appropriate time to let others care for her. Be honest with yourself and be willing to acknowledge that there will be a time when your mom needs more help than can be provided in your home. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be for mom.
Helpful Answer (10)

im wondering how old is your mom? and how bad is her memory?

my mom back in 2010 was showing some signs of memory loss and some confusion plus making 'mistakes' here and there. (and bad judgment too!!)

now 8+ years later - her memory is about 10 seconds long. cant remember what day or season it is. cant read. cant watch tv (cant keep up cause can not remember whats going on) isn't washing her hair and im going to have to check on if shes even showering. (she is in assisted living) I have seen her "decline." Due to the dementia, she has seen things and hears things. (she believes everything she thinks no matter how bizarre)

I am glad she was placed before it was TOO DIFFICULT. she has been in AL since 2011. (with my dad, who is now deceased) she knows her surroundings, even if she has no memory. I think because we didn't wait too long.

edit: my moms AL is very nice. not 'nursing home'....more like a senior home. lots of people always around, so no loneliness ...lots of activities. etc
Helpful Answer (9)
Marysd Aug 2018
I agree it is best to move loved ones into a senior community before it is too late and get them used to that environment. I feel as though many people have negative ideas about what assisted living is like. There are wonderful assisted living communities out there and no one should feel guilty about moving their loved one into a senior community so they can get their life back. Most all seniors would tell you that do t want to go live in one of these communities. My parents told me this. We enter and toured several communities and I told them they could test it out and we would not sell their how yet or do anything with their existing house. Turns out they liked the community and have not asked about moving back home as they realize they get the care there that my mom needs.
You should put your husbands wishes above your moms if you want to save your marriage.
Good luck.
You can remain a loving daughter if your mother is living somewhere else. You can be a loving daughter without visiting every day - for most of us that isn't even an option. You and your husband should be making joint decisions about whether she lives in your house. Your own feelings are important, but perhaps you should talk them through with a counsellor.
Helpful Answer (9)

Tinder after reading your reply to us, it sounds like you’ve made up your mind and wanted us to agree with you. This is definitely a power struggle between you two and those never work nor are they healthy in a marriage. I strongly urge you to consider couple therapy on this issue. It may only take one or two visits. But having an objective third party would be helpful. And if he won’t go, then go alone. It can still be helpful.
My dad is in a NH and I didn’t "ship him off" as you said. It is where he can get the care he needs as he is wheelchair bound, so please don’t use that phrase to others even if you think it. Many of us here have reasons why our LO are in a facility. Thank you.
Helpful Answer (9)

Um. Yes, it does sound a tad bit defensive to me. I understand that having your mom there is important to you, and it would be one thing if you and hubby were agreed on the matter, but it is his house too. After all, you are married to him, and not your mother.

I'm not trying to be harsh here, just honest. It sounds like your mom is pleasant to you and hubby, and can perform many of her ADLs, so her being difficult is not an issue. It sounds to me like one of the main issues for your hubby is lack of privacy in his own home and couple time with you.

Speaking for myself, after my ordeal with my mom living here, I wouldn't want any extra person who wasn't my spouse or child living here for an extended period of time. Lack of privacy and time with my husband was really stressful for us, and I ended up placing her in a really nice facility.

My mom is like yours in the sense that she complains sometimes about being lonely, and yes there have been times she wants to sit in her room and mope. There are plenty of people to talk to and activities to participate in, but I can't make her do so. But I feel like if I run up there all the time because she feels lonely, not only will I run myself ragged and put a strain on my relationship with my husband, but I would be enabling this behavior.

I point blank told her, "Mom, I can't be up here 24 hours a day. There are people here and lots of fun things to do, but it's your choice to go and have fun, or sit here and not have fun. No one can decide that but you."

I have seen a difference in her participation level. It seems like she is slowly participating in things more. Still gripes and complains. She's miserable, she's lonely, and the latest is complaining that "I never visit her" after I've been up there 3 times this week. Sounds like your mom kind of did the same, but she may catch herself making friends and having fun there. The socialization would be good for her too.

Plus, there are multiple facilities out there too, so if the one she was at wasn't a good fit, she might like another one better. Just food for thought.
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