christmas and new year


Registered User
Mar 6, 2007
hiya- hope you all had a good christmas and a happy new year,
My Mum and I have had some trouble with my uncle over christmas and we are left unsure what else we ca try to help him. Last year for christmas he went to stay with his niece but when he came home we was confused and couldn't understand where he was or where he had been, so this year we saw that a lovely local sheltered housing area near him were having a christmas party and that people were wlecome to go and stay for a week or a few days over the christmas period. as it it just round the corner from his house and seemed to be a nice break for him we suggested it but he refused and said it wasnt christmas and wanted to stay at home. We thought about asking him to stay with us but we live an hour away and as we normally go to visit him he has not been to our house recently and we were worried this would make him more confused- particulaly with all our family over as well. He didnt want decerations put up in his house or any christmas presents, we bought him some little presesnts so he had something to open but he didnt even want to look. It was horrible becuase we knew we were going to have a nice time and he was going to be alone- there was jsut nothing he wanted to do or be involved in.
so, we went to see him after boxing day - he was in bed all his lights turned off and curtains drawn- it was gone 1pm, he has been doing this for a while now, he sometimes wont come down to open the door and we have a key of our own but its horrible to go in in the dark when hes inbed- everytime you worry something might have happened to him , or what if you frighten him if he doenst recognise us? My mum phoned the police on one occasion and it was only after the policeman shone his torch through the window and shouted he was from the police, did my uncle come down. he seems to respond more to men - he can remember my dad who he sees very rarely but not my mum or me who see him regulaly, he says we are incompetent wheras he will cooperate much more with my dad or other men. His house is in a terrible state, he keeps leaving the fire on, the food in his fridge is mouldy and he rarley gets changed from his pjamas anymore.
Social services had appointed carers but he wil not answer the door to them or let them in so they say they can no longer come if he wont accept any help. He has had several appointments with the psychiatrist who said altohugh the score on a memory test he did has deteriorated, if he wont go into sheltered houing then there is little else she can offer.we treid to explain that if he had male carers he would cooperate more but they say he has to accept who they provide and he jsut wont let the ladies in.
it has now become very difficult to help anymore- he wont answer his phone and has not taken his tablets for a long time, he seems to be eating occasionaly but nothing on a regualar basis and we are just stuck on what to do. His social worker says we have to wait for an emergency to occur- the problem is this is an emergency surely if he is not eating properly or taking his tablets things wont get much worse we cant carry on like this forever:(
Also, at school i am in my gcse year so i have classes afterschool in some subjects, its really hard for my mum to be there to pick me up and be at my uncles when theres a crisis- my grandparents help us out on a thursday and my mum and dad try to alternate on a tuesday but it is getting so difficult. I worry that the next 'emergency' we wait for will be when he dies and its horrible to think that we are leaving him waiting for that.
sorry for such a long post,
hope you are all ok
lauren x


Registered User
Jul 31, 2007
Dear Lauren,
Christmas and New Year was not too bad thank you.
I am sorry to read your message about your Uncle.
Unfortunately, it is another direction goes with this illness, whereby they want to shut themselves off from the world and what is going on in it.
I think you are doing a really great job and with studying I know that is not easy as my Grandaughter is going through the same thing in being very worried over her Grandad and trying to study.
The Social Worker could have been more helpful in seeing if there were any male Carers.
As for your Uncle not wanting women there, from my own personel experience, would you like a man to have to wash and dress you? Peter hated women coming in to wash and dress him and boy did he get aggitated.
Cross Roads, Help the Age, Local Alzheimer's Branch and the Princess Royal Trust are worth talking to.
As for not taking his medication nor eating properly this is something that a Proffessional needs to look into.
I hope that some of this makes sense. There is something am I hope you do not mind me saying is - you are so young and also have a life so don't be too hard on yourself. None of us applied for this job.
I wish you all the best and good luck with your exams.


Registered User
Mar 6, 2007

Thankyou for your reply, i have never thought about why my uncle seems to apprechiate the help of men more- but you have given me something to think about and it makes much more sense now, i can understand why he may feel uncomfortable.
Me and my mum will contact the trusts you suggessted and see if this can offer my uncle any more support or tell us how we can help him more.
Good luck to your grandaughter with her exams too, thanks again you are very kind,
Lauren xx


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Hi Lauren

It sounds as if your uncle is wanting to withdraw from the world. Is he on antidepressants? If not, perhaps you should ask the GP to visit to assess him.

It may be time for you to be considering a care home for him. It sounds as if it's getting too much for your mum and you to cope with, and it's not going to get easier. You have youe education to consider, and you really can't be expected to cope with all this extra pressure.

In a CH, your uncle would have a regular routine and regular meals, and you'd be able to visit without having all the worry.

I know only you and your mum can make that decision, and it's such a difficult one to make, but it sounds as if it would be in everyone's interests.