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A lifelong friend and me

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
Wll that was an interesting experience! Today I managed to speak with the new CH manager (Matron manager) who seemed very stressed at having to chat with me via telephone. Anyway I got a five minute lecture (no pauses) on the fact she was new to the post (2 weeks in) and was having to re-test the whole CH as previously the wrong tests had been used. I was informed there had been 18 deaths in the home from Covid-19. I am not quite sure the purpose of that statement, as I already knew. Anyway she has to re-test all of the staff and residents and then take the results forward if all clear to commence visiting (why didn't anyone just say this at the start?). She went on in her mini lecture to be patronising about missing my mum because I am a boy. Luckily I decided to no engage with her on that final part of the conversation as she seemed somewhat uptight in her tone and manner and probably best to let things be for now -I am sure she meant to be considerate rather than patronising (I hope) and besides I couldn't get a word in edge ways anyway.

Uncles funeral at 2pm today and its a wet, windy day.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
947
High Peak
Sounds like if the previous manager was given the boot there were lots of other things going on at the home, maybe below the surface, that you didn't know about. And the new manager has had to hit the ground running, desperately hoping to turn things around in her first couple of weeks.

But you've spoken to her (or rather, she has spoken to you!) so it's a start. The testing situation sounds horrific. I can't believe they were given inadequate tests to use. If they think they know who is positive but actually don't know, any measures they take will not be effective :(

You've made a start with the new manager so let's hope it improves. I do agree that her attitude to you missing your mum 'just' cos you're a boy is inappropriate.
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
Sounds like if the previous manager was given the boot there were lots of other things going on at the home, maybe below the surface, that you didn't know about. And the new manager has had to hit the ground running, desperately hoping to turn things around in her first couple of weeks.

But you've spoken to her (or rather, she has spoken to you!) so it's a start. The testing situation sounds horrific. I can't believe they were given inadequate tests to use. If they think they know who is positive but actually don't know, any measures they take will not be effective :(

You've made a start with the new manager so let's hope it improves. I do agree that her attitude to you missing your mum 'just' cos you're a boy is inappropriate.
Yes its a start I guess, to be fair she did actually call me back were as the previous manager didn't know what a phone looked like -but really, is it down to families to have to push matters so much ? And now it appears I'm being penalised for having a strong relationship with my mum. I can only say any manager that attacks that must be lost for words!
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
Families are funny entities aren't they. The funeral was a washout (rain, rain and rain) and very different to dads, though the services were at the same church and crematorium. I felt I didn't fit in to the cliques and ignorings (nothing new there) so stayed for the services and then left. There comes a point when there is little left to bind cousins and distant family together as once was, and today was that point. But farewell uncle Harry, rest well.
 

Helly68

Registered User
Mar 12, 2018
747
@Palerider I am sorry you had that difficult phone call on top of the funeral as well.

Mummy's care home were excellent at many things, but sadly not communication. I had issues at end of life with one member of staff telling me I could "come in whenever I wanted" and the manager saying we could do window visits only.
This is a very tough time, COVID and the fact that Mummy died about a week after entering end of life care. I spent a lot of time with her pre-COVID, for which I am very grateful, I do understand the risks, but for me I wanted one message.

I think some managers are less experienced and just not very good at these sort of conversations. It is never easy but I can't believe you had a lecture there, sounds like someone is not confident in their own position and trying to move the focus back to you. Dear me. Very inapropriate.

I hope you are able to get more clarity and see your Mum. The whole communication nationally and locally around care home visiting has been such a mess. As usual, no one listens to carers and PWD.
 

DianeW

Registered User
Sep 10, 2013
762
Lytham St Annes
You were there for your uncle representing your Mum too so that’s what matters.

I don’t have a big family now a few cousins but now all my Mum’s siblings have sadly gone, I doubt very much seeing any of them anymore.

We really only ever met at a funeral anyway.
 

Sarasa

Registered User
Apr 13, 2018
1,850
Glad you managed to talk to the new manager or be talked at. The comment about missing your mum because you're a man seems totally inappropriate, but maybe let it slide for the moment. I think she would have got a very sharp retort if she'd said anything similar to me. It's not all together the previous managers fault about tests. lots of faulty ones were sent out, certainly that has affected mum's home.
Sorry about the funeral being a wash-out. One of my dad's snooty cousins told my father he didn't want my dad at his mother's funeral, but turned up for dad's. I didn't have the heart to tell him how much he'd upset my father as he'd liked his aunt rather a lot. Families are just odd.
Hope the house hunting situation improves.
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
Glad you managed to talk to the new manager or be talked at. The comment about missing your mum because you're a man seems totally inappropriate, but maybe let it slide for the moment. I think she would have got a very sharp retort if she'd said anything similar to me. It's not all together the previous managers fault about tests. lots of faulty ones were sent out, certainly that has affected mum's home.
Sorry about the funeral being a wash-out. One of my dad's snooty cousins told my father he didn't want my dad at his mother's funeral, but turned up for dad's. I didn't have the heart to tell him how much he'd upset my father as he'd liked his aunt rather a lot. Families are just odd.
Hope the house hunting situation improves.
Yes -'talked at' it is the right choice of words :rolleyes: -she knew I was a senior professional so I didn't get chance to 'talk' properly. I am sure she felt stressed and no doubt didn't want to have to speak to me -but the ice is broken now, despite the comment at the end. At least there has been a communication from the manager -long may it continue!

My uncle Harry was the last of 8 brothers, my dad was the youngest -I never did fit in with the clique that formed over the years. But it doesn't matter -I was there because Harry was always OK with me plus mum and dad were good friends over the years with him and his wife, so I represented mum as well (which mum would have wanted) -the rest I doesn't seem to matter to me in the way it used to -what good are cousins who cannot speak a greeting let alone hold conversation with you? Like you @Sarasa I keep silent rather than comment -its the best way ;)
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
@Palerider I am sorry you had that difficult phone call on top of the funeral as well.

Mummy's care home were excellent at many things, but sadly not communication. I had issues at end of life with one member of staff telling me I could "come in whenever I wanted" and the manager saying we could do window visits only.
This is a very tough time, COVID and the fact that Mummy died about a week after entering end of life care. I spent a lot of time with her pre-COVID, for which I am very grateful, I do understand the risks, but for me I wanted one message.

I think some managers are less experienced and just not very good at these sort of conversations. It is never easy but I can't believe you had a lecture there, sounds like someone is not confident in their own position and trying to move the focus back to you. Dear me. Very inapropriate.

I hope you are able to get more clarity and see your Mum. The whole communication nationally and locally around care home visiting has been such a mess. As usual, no one listens to carers and PWD.
Thanks -I've put it all down to her stress levels as she must be feeling it (on this occasion)
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
I confess I am feeling the strain of mum being in the CH and not being able to visit. The guilt I feel comes in waves, and today its especially bad. I was walking round the supermarket where we used to go and not able to stop thinking about my poor mum stuck with no visiting. Its seems that just as we come to terms with one aspect of this journey another one throws itself into the mix. I can't seem to make sense of any of it at the moment. So I go back over the questions, uttering to myself in the house 'should I have...' 'could I have...' and so on. Its torture thats the only way I can describe it -psychological torture. How can I stop feeling this way?
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
885
Hi @Palerider, you have been put in a situation that must feel impossible. I think I would feel the same as you are, it must feel tortuous not to be able to visit Mum. It is incredibly unfair. You know there was no option but for Mum to go into 24 hour care - it would have been impossible to keep her safe and content at home. You had no way of knowing that the pandemic would happen and that it would have this impact on you not being able to visit Mum. I read your post about your discussion with the Care Home Manager and it seems, patronising as she was (I've experienced that too!), that they are making slow progress which is, I know, not good enough for you as you really need to see Mum now. You can only keep on at them so that you are first in line when visiting does happen. In the meantime can't they set up a phone call or skype call for you with Mum - I know it is not the same, but perhaps you just need to hear her and for her to hear you. I really feel for you.
 

anxious annie

Registered User
Jan 2, 2019
508
I do sympathise with you @Palerider, it's so hard not being able to visit loved ones. I hope the new manager will get on and do something to rectify this , and as @Pete1 says, can you phone, Skype, FaceTime etc. I know some with dementia find this hard to follow tho.
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
Thanks @Pete1 @anxious annie -I have asked about facetime but the activities team aren't available until tomorrow :rolleyes:. Its worth a try although I know mum won't be able to grasp it. I am working tomorrow and Friday as well so it will be difficult to take a call if it happens.

Today I signed the contract of sale and also the transfer of deeds -just waiting now for the buyers solicitors to make their approach to exchange. I can't believe its gone through so quickly and caught me off gaurd a little, I expected it all to go slower. I thought clearing the house felt final, but signing those bits of paper took 'final' to a new level and sad that in the end all that makes any difference are two bits of paper which represent someones life, their home -which meant a great deal to mum.
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
885
Yes it's a difficult moment for sure @Palerider - but I'm sure Mum enjoyed her home and you have good memories of those times, they will always be there.

I do so hope the home can arrange some contact with Mum for you soon. I'm sure that will help.
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
So I chat with the activities lead at the CH and can't understand why I haven't been getting updates about activities about mum since she went in the home ? Hmm they forgot to add me -really?? Lets see Jan to Aug with repeated requests -someone has a bad memory. But here comes the best bit, I have to say I just broke down into an hysterical laugh at this point -despite all the comments about facetime from head office and from public health etc the CH doesn't yet have facetime, and I was informed they are just in the process of sorting it out with new tablets to boot -woo hoo -🤬. Its a good job TP exists otherwise someone in the CH would have an enormous headache right now 🤨
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
885
Morning @Palerider, I can understand your annoyance (I expect that is a mild version of what you are actually feeling). It is simply appalling that they haven't put an alternative communication route, with something as simple as Facetime, in place - that is a very basic measure for the wellbeing of residents and families. They have had months to do it - absolutely appalling. They aren't doing the basics to give you any solace or comfort at a time when you need it most.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,964
Kent
Sorry to hear this @Palerider. I hope it doesn`t affect your mum too much. Of course it makes it worse when you can`t see her and are trying to imagine how she is.

Let``s hope it is resolved quickly.
 

TNJJ

Registered User
May 7, 2019
1,788
cornwall
So I chat with the activities lead at the CH and can't understand why I haven't been getting updates about activities about mum since she went in the home ? Hmm they forgot to add me -really?? Lets see Jan to Aug with repeated requests -someone has a bad memory. But here comes the best bit, I have to say I just broke down into an hysterical laugh at this point -despite all the comments about facetime from head office and from public health etc the CH doesn't yet have facetime, and I was informed they are just in the process of sorting it out with new tablets to boot -woo hoo -🤬. Its a good job TP exists otherwise someone in the CH would have an enormous headache right now 🤨
Absolutely awful! What happened to Human Rights! People seem to forget that . I hope it gets sorted soon.
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
2,011
North West
Absolutely awful! What happened to Human Rights! People seem to forget that . I hope it gets sorted soon.
Absolutely. There is always a risk in these scenarios that human rights are eroded. Its a difficult balance on the one hand keeping people safe, but not using that as a means to prevent basic human freedoms. Doing nothing is not a remedy. I do feel that there has been too much weight given to absolutes which are never achievable after the intial back lash on the neglect of care homes. We are now at the opposite end of the spectrum with risk averseness dictating the rights of residents in care homes. Managers and leaders have forgotten that there is and always will be an element of risk -a remedy is how those risks are managed rather than blanket banning of visiting. It is laudable when the CH has several different agency staff rotating through every week, but family who are more likely to be cautious can't visit!