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Mom's getting discouraged!

Posted by ginnier (My Page) on
Sun, Oct 8, 06 at 18:30

My Mom and Dad are living in a retirement home, they have a 3 room apt with 2 baths. A nice place, meals provided, housekeeping too. My Mom's mental abilities are still relatively sharp but physically she is very feeble. Dad's the opposite, sadly. He's had a small stroke and probably a bit of dementia, but physically he's pretty good. He's forgotten how to put a battery in something---oh, one interesting thing that he's started doing: he forgets that he has put his napkin on his lap when we go out to eat and then he asks where's the napkins??? He acts pretty chagrined when he realizes that the napkin's there on his lap and he hangs his head and says I should know that, I put it there!
Anyway Mom thinks she can find someone to solve Dad's problems, the mental slowness. We have talked to the Drs, and tried diff. meds, no change. She needs a support person. Who do you go to? Does the retirement village usually have someone that does this? I probably should just call and ask...but she's gets rather discouraged at this now silent, practically, husband. She says it's like living with a 5 year old, do this, put this away, look in the 2nd drawer for your pjs, not the 3rd.
The village has a home health business in it that provides individual care; I wonder if I should have my folks evaluated. Mom would get her dander up at that; she'd get all protective--"we can manage on our own". She is soo proud.
I tend to let them go on their own and assume all is pretty much okay. Then on the days that I am in town, I get them out and about, shop a very little, out for lunch, go for a ride...they don't want to be out too long cuz they do get tired...
I don't know whether to try and get a stranger in there to talk to mom about her situation. I just can't believe she'd "open up" and unload.
Thanks for letting me ramble.... Gin


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Mom's getting discouraged!

sounds like your Dad needs to go to 'daycare' once or twice a week so your Mom can go enjoy some activity with other seniors who still have it mentally - don't mean to sound abrupt - we are in the same situation with the genders reversed.

Dad has no one to talk to/with, no activities (ezcept going to the grocery store) - My brother just retired so he is going over there more often but it is a lonely life for Dad...I still work full time and my sister lives 350 miles away.

Try to locate somewhere your Dad can go and be safe and encourage your Mom to participate in something - playing Bingo/cards....attending a senior citizens program, etc.

good luck, Carolyn


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RE: Mom's getting discouraged!

You might try to talk to her and explain that she really is "living with a five year old" because his mental functioning is regressing. And it will get worse. He's loosing that ability to think for himself. She's got to take over the task of directing him as much as she can. Talking to someone besides family might be a very good thing.

Some sort of day care for him would be wonderful for both of them. She would get the respite that she needs and he would be around others that might give him more mental stimulation than he's getting now.

I am sure there is someone at the home that can point you in the right direction.
Good luck!


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RE: Mom's getting discouraged!

Gin,
My mother is in a retirement home too. The people at the home will know about many resources in your area. You won't be the first to ask them these questions and I'm sure they'll be able to help you. As hard as it is to see your folks go through this, you are not alone and can get some assistant and advice from many areas. The hard part is finding the right people to ask! Let your first step be the administrators at the retirement home.
If they aren't as helpful as you would like - sometimes the fear of liability issues keeps them from making specific recommendations - call any of the elder care facilities in the area. They can help guide you too.
Anything you do will probably make your mother angry, but every thing you do will help them.
Kate


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