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My father-in-law has finally given in to assisted living which I am so glad as he will be getting the care he needs. He does still have a home but is not safe for him to be there, as he thinks that he can go back there for a few hours each day and then return to assisted living later in the day. I do not think this would be a good idea but my brother-in-law insists that there will be no issues with this. Has anyone ever done this? What are your ideas on this.

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How will he get adjusted to AL if he's never there? How will he make friends?

If your brother in law thinks that he can do this, then BIL should sign dad up for adult day care and commit to being responsible for the rest of dad's care needs.

This is a TERRIBLE idea. What is BIL going to do if his dad refuses to leave?
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gemswinner12 Jan 7, 2020
I agree. Who is paying for the upkeep of the house (utilities, yard work, sprinklers and gutters?). I cleaned out and rented out my Mom's house to help pay for her care and incidentals. As-is, the house is going to start breaking down. Also, an unoccupied house is a magnet for thieves and squatters. The house should be cleaned up and either rented out or sold.
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The trouble seems to be that FIL doesn't want to go to a day center, he wants to go to a "night" center!

FIL thinks he can sleep and eat at the ALF and return to his home for "a few hours" each day. Well, he can if he likes. He's not a prisoner. He can go where he pleases.

But how's he going to manage it? I wonder if your BIL is taking this line as a bit of a ruse. If that's what it takes to get FIL's agreement, let's go with it; and then once FIL is actually resident in the ALF we can work on his practical routine.

Or, if BIL is happy to undertake the ferrying back and forth, and the negotiations on days when FIL wants to stay in his house for "a few more hours," let them try it. Just make sure you're not on the volunteer drivers' list.
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My grandfather had his room in the AL, ate breakfast there, then my mom or my uncle brought him home for the day. He ate a hot lunch, sat in his chair, drank coffee & smoked cigarettes all afternoon then went back to the AL for supper & bedtime.

He had no interest in arts & crafts, bingo, etc. & he couldn't smoke at the facility. At home he felt comfortable.

It was tedious for mom & uncle doing daily transportation. Otherwise it worked out for them.
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Ioanna Jan 7, 2020
How very kind your mom and uncle were to your grandfather! He was fortunate to have such loving care in his life.
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With one foot in AL and one foot out, how can your FIL be expected to adjust? Or to make a decision one way or another?

He has not 'given in' to Assisted Living at ALL if he's expecting to go back home every day for a couple of hours!!

Not a good idea at all, based on my experience with my own parents in AL.

Good luck!
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Amen! Don't allow FIL to go back and forth! After my parents moved to AL, my brother took them back to their house to get things that they realized they needed in AL. Unfortunately, it kept that hope alive that they would one day return to the house and there was one time that my mom was not going to leave. She has Alzheimer's Disease and said they could go on their way and she was fine right where she was!
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In BIL’s defense, I understand that seeing one’s parent go through a life change such as going to a facility is very difficult. BIL wants to ease into this change by having his father treat the AL like a daycare. If he can spend time in his home yet, things aren’t that “real”. BIL doesn’t want to accept “all or nothing”.

Your family has the right to call a Care Conference at any time. Call one and make sure BIL is there. It’s a good idea to call one within the first few weeks of admittance. Have the staff kindly explain to BIL that to switch between the two residences is very confusing to his father and will be difficult for all of you. He may be more on board with their experience and knowledge.
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I would imagine that the home will not be in favor of such an arrangement. Letting one stay at their new home is a cornerstone to them adjusting. Taking them out just adds to their confusion and gives them false hope that someday they will return to their former home.

From what I can determine your BIL is his son? Sons see their fathers as the leaders of the family, and they do not want to bruise their fathers ego. It is complicated, as the son sees himself through his father, strong, healthy...a leader...this is a difficult adjustment on both of their parts. The father is no longer who he was, yet the son wants to maintain a façade.

Who has your FIL Durable POA, who is going to make sound decisions for him when he can no longer do this for himself?

Call a Care Council meeting, make sure all parties are there, perhaps the facility can help him to understand. Good Luck!
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lol. Are you sure we don't have the same dad? Although my dad never gave in to moving from his home, he was forced to because of a hospitalization. Prior to the move, he always talked that if he moved, he would spend the nights at the AL and days at his house. After he was moved, I stayed away for almost 2 weeks. We brought in extra care people from the care service he had at his house to get him familiar with the new place and get him started with activities. As I recall, they did not take him back to the house during that time. He has been in AL 3 months now. I think it's been at least 3 weeks since he has last gone to his house and he only visits for a few minutes at a time to check on things. (I would love to sell the place but I best be patient.) We've kept the care people on 3 days a week and he can ask them at any time to take him there, but he doesn't. He's too busy at the AL now. Although I will say that almost every time I see him, he mentions that he must move home. We have had some real go-arounds about it. It actually surprises me because he seems really happy at the AL. As his guardian I would never allow it and all I do when he brings it up is tell him to call his attorney - that I would never support a move back there. Tell your brother-in-law that the only way he will get used to the new environment is to immerse himself in it. Taking him to the house every day will not help him. Change is hard but I have been surprised that my dad has adapted as well as he has. When we are out and about on Saturday's, he is always anxious to get back to AL for the next activity.
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disgustedtoo Jan 7, 2020
Glad to hear that your dad "seems" to be adjusting! Three weeks and no house visit is GREAT! Wanting to get back for the next activity while you are out is a good sign too!

As for when he brings it up during your visits, suggesting he call his attorney is good. I wouldn't focus on saying YOU would not support his return, but place the blame elsewhere (doctors, courts, etc.) then try to change the topic or leave.
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Unless he has dementia issues to consider, he should be able to make this transition any way he wants. If his home visits require the assistance of others, then those helpers have a say regarding frequency and duration of said visits. It is easy to decide for the elderly loved one what is best for them, but is that respectful of them? I wonder how many men live in his assisted living complex; usually there are few. It is possible that many of the activities are geared toward women's tastes. I imagine that the house has memories and meaning for your father-in-law and the house also represents an investment as well. Why not visit his castle? I suspect that your father-in-law knows that there will come a time that he can't enjoy his home any longer; why force that loss now? If brother-in-law wants to do this for his dad, let him. On a practical note, his son can do all the little things a house needs doing while dad enjoys his hours there. There will be upkeep as the house sits empty. If he is expecting you to be responsible for this task, that's different. You do have a say as to how much you do to supplement dad's activities and it is important that you advocate for yourself. When my parents each ended up in a nursing home, I tried to get them out of facility as often as possible. Fresh air, sunshine, a change of scenery, and perspective as well as a little more physical stuff like walking and stairs and getting in and out of the car is always good. Plus, being in a comfort zone is respite. My advice is find the best balance between your wishes and his and know that eventually out of necessity, it will change.
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Tanaonfolly Jan 7, 2020
Sorry. I see too many comments on here that think this is a BAD idea. Just as you said, there are memories in his home and as long as there is someone to take him there, I love that idea. I am just wondering about those that are so oppose to this.
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After reading these replies, I need to also stress that my dad's situation may be different than the original requester. My dad is 93 and has dementia. A couple years ago, APS told me I needed to seek guardianship because dad is no longer able to make appropriate decisions for himself (which I have since found out does not mean he will do what he should even if someone else is making the decisions!). The whole house thing dredges up too many memories. His wife's hospital bed remains in the living room and she passed on 4 years ago (I would empty the house but dad is not aware I have a key. He would be furious if he knew so I just leave it alone.) His geriatric psych has recommended he NOT go back, even for a visit, and that luckily seems to have taken care of itself for the most part.
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mindys Jan 8, 2020
Same here FIL would be furious if he came home and did not see his clutter all over the floors. His doctors have told him he can not go back even for a visit because he could fall there and get hurt. But he is still thinking he can do that as he has many friends that would take him there. It is going to be a battle but I realize it is for his own good even if he does not realize it.
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