Concern for my parents

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by alison, Sep 2, 2003.

  1. alison

    alison Registered User

    Aug 25, 2003
    gravesend, kent
    I am a new member and finding the site very helpful. I am an only child which is one of the most difficult things. My Dad cares for my mum, both in their late 70's. He finds it hard to accept she is not as she used to be. I am told this is quite common though. The problem I have and it is driving me round the bend is that he won't accept any help or advice and just deals with mum in the way he thinks best. Some of it good, some of it not so good. She goes to a day centre twice a week. He does everything for her, like bathing, washing her hair, helping her get dressed. He gets very stressed, which he denies, but I hear it in his voice and I don't blame him. I tell him that. He won't entertain even talking to social servs about help available as and when he feels he needs it. I arranged for a lady from the local Alz Soc to have a chat with him. He appears to take advice on board, then goes against it. He says things like "mum remembers more than she lets on". She humours him most of the time. He een asks her what she's had for lunch at the day centre. She can't even remember going. He says she looks forward to going. She doesn't even remember going once she's home. The biggest worry now though is the massive bruising she gets and no one seems to know how. The day centre rang me last week to say she had a black eye. Said my dad had done it, but not to worry, she hit him back! Whether thats true or not, she would not remember how it happened. The bruising has spread all down her back and arms. She is a real sight but says it doesn't hurt. My aunt told my dad to take her to the doctors, but he said she is fine. She has had bruises in funny places, on the side of her neck and on her t back and thighs. I know older people bruise easily but she is so bad at the moment, dad didn't want her going to the day centre. I don't think my dad is doing it, but I think he needs to accept help and advice before something major happens. We had to call an ambulance recently because something happened with a wire coat hanger when he was trying to get her blouse off it, and her ear was gushing blood. The house looked like a murder scene, blood spattered everywhere as dad had tried to stem the flow. We were in A and E twice that day as she kept pulling the dressing off. I know he will get frustrated but he says he doesn't. The house is filthy. He is partially sighted and thinks he cleans properly but he doesn't. Everyone notices. He won't let me do anything when I call and won't entertain the idea of having a woman I know who is used to elderly people even do a basic spring clean, let alone come weekly. I dread the phone ringing now in case something drastic has happened. He doesn't even accept that one day, he won't be able to cope. He is quite firm with her and in my opinion, talks to her too crossly. He won't go to a carers group as I have suggested. Mum is quite happy and still has a sense of humour, but it's just the physical things that are concerning me. I think maybe they should move into a bungalow, but he would poo poo that idea. I try to have a chat with her on the phone and he'll be in the back ground saying tell Alison this, tell Alison that, and I can hear him getting cross when she doesn't understnad what he's on about. I am rambling too now. So many problems. Like all of us and it wont get any better I know, Regards to all of you and any reply would be appreciated. Particularly from anyone else an only child
  2. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003

    it really sounds like your dad needs a break. You said that your mum goes to a day care centre a couple of times a week. Does your dad get a chance to talk to anyone during this time? What does he do with this time. It is so difficult, physically and emotionally to care for someone and the stress can be quite absorbing. Is there anyone else close to him who can talk things through and help him cope? Is there anyway he can get a restbite each day?

  3. alison

    alison Registered User

    Aug 25, 2003
    gravesend, kent
    concern with parents

    Many thanks for reply Charlie. That's just the problem, he says he is coping, he can manage, etc etc. My aunt called him "**** of the north"! Never has asked for help, even before mum was ill, despite being poorly sighted, has always battled on with everything. I can't force help on him. I've tried to be insistent but he over rides me everytime. I am going round to see them today. I am dreading seeing mum, because I understand she is in a right state with the bruising. I will ask if there anything I can do, looking round at the mucky house and he will say no. Mum likes me to sit with her when I go. I have tried going round when she is at the day centre, but again, he will not let me do a thing. When I try to talk to him alone about how pressurised he must be, he laughs it off. Mum always did call him "this week's hero". They do get out most days. Mum's main problems are the memory and not being able to do usual everyday tasks. He thinks she should try to do them and I can imagine he gets in a right flap when he tries to get her to lay the table or dust, and she can't do it. I speak to the local alz society who know us and they say, oh no, Dad shouldn't force mum to do things. I tell him that and he agrees, then I found out he's tried to get her to sweep the path or something. Understandable not to want to see her sit about, but he needs to calm down. But how the hell I get him to to it, I just don't know! Many thanks for your reply. I will read your profile now.

    Regards to you 2.
  4. Angela

    Angela Registered User

    May 28, 2003
    I am not an only child, but I know of people that are and have a very similiar situation to you.
    My advise to you would be that which I have instigated in those similiar cases and that is to involve social services, or at least the local AS, without your fathers initial consent. I apreciate that this may sound a little harsh to you and others that may read this, but in my experience you have to appear cruel to be kind.
    Your Father is clearly not copeing and not getting any support other than from you as Charlie has indicated.
    Your dad has not been able to accept the illness that your Mother has, he may say that he has, but his actions suggest the opposite. furthermore, you are going to be the last person that he discusses this with or accepts the offer of help from. Infact, I'd say anything that is offered with you involved he will turn his nose up at. PLease know that this has nothing to do with you personally and the way in which you are handling these difficult times, it is just your father trying to protect you.
    Somebody else has to take abit of the situation out of his hands.
    Hope this makes sense

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