• All threads and posts regarding Coronavirus COVID-19 can be found in our area specifically for Coronavirus COVID-19 discussion.

    You can directly access this area >here<.

Dilemma

None the Wiser

Registered User
Feb 3, 2020
248
0
Oh @Frank24 I really feel for you. I too worry a lot about taking Covid into the home. It does lead to a restricted life, but Ive concluded from listening to others on here that it is an important sacrifice both for our loved ones and for those in the care home that are vulnerable. We must continue to be as responsible as we can even when some around us are throwing caution to the wind.
 

Jan L

Registered User
Mar 26, 2020
95
0
I have written on this site previously opening up about the situation I was living in with my Husband of 52 years. I have been his sole carer 24/7, he has the combined Alzheimer's/Vascular Dementia, his can barely speak, his mobility is poor, he is unable to find his way around the house to the toilet or know what to do when he gets there. I was becoming very stressed and impatient with him due to lack of sleep, so he would become very resistant to my help especially when I wanted him to have a shower.

Everyone has been telling me to have respite care to recharge my batteries and get carers into help me. I had the opportunity to go for a four night break with a walking group I used to walk with, so after much thought and consideration put him in a local Care Home for a week. I took him in on the Wednesday to ensure he had settled down before the Saturday I went away. The Manager told me on the Friday that he had settled well, he was eating and sleeping all night (something he hasn't been doing for the last 12 months getting me up 4/5 times a night). On the day we returned on the coach we were told that one of the passengers had tested positive for Covid-19 and was in hospital. I asked the home to keep my Husband for a further week. Test and Trace sent an email telling me to self isolate for 10 days. I took lateral Flow and PCR tests both of which were negative but I was very careful not to mix in doors or anywhere unnecessarily. The Manager didn't want me to visit the home until the middle of this week at the earliest, when I tried to book a slot there weren't any until today, so it is over 3 weeks now since I saw my Husband. I had to take a LFT before I was allowed into the sun room there are using for visiting purposes. My Husband was having his tea at the time so I waited.

When I saw him I was shocked, he has aged 10 years, his cheeks are sunk, his skin is sallow, and he needed a hair cut (that can be put right easy enough but didn't help his overall appearance) the Carer had a job to bring him and get him to sit down. He had no idea who I was, after a few minutes he went to sleep, which is how he stopped for nearly an hour. I woke him up to tell him I was leaving after ringing the bell for the carer to come and let me out. He needed the toilet so she took him out of the room, with my help, while my Husband held on to my jacket, I don't know if he was trying to take me with him. I came home and am sitting here wondering what the heck I have done to him, ( I am in no way holding the Care Home responsible, they have a very good reputation and the carers were lovely and kind with him) but there is no way now that I can manage him at home as he is now, I always knew at the back of my mind that this is what would probably happen if I put in for respite, but no one listened to me and understood my reservations. A 3 weeks stay with me not being able to visit was never on the cards, now I have to wait until next Friday before I can go to visit him again. This was supposed to be giving me a rest to help me cope better, now I feel I have lost everything, just for a 4 night break. Has anyone else had a similar experience I am bereft and feeling so guilty.
 

Violet Jane

Registered User
Aug 23, 2021
420
0
I’m sorry to read that you feel so upset about your decision to place your husband in respite care. Covid has been devastating to people in residential care in so many ways. Try not to reproach yourself. From what you have written you were clearly at breaking point when you made your decision and you have to ask yourself what would have happened if you hadn’t had that time off. Unfortunately, there are no good options with dementia. Is it possible (a) that your husband would have declined anyway in that three week period (his dementia is obviously advanced if he can no longer use the toilet) and (b) that, having been with your husband every day before respite, you had not realised how much he had aged / declined and so it was a shock when you saw him for the first time after a three week break? I hope that my comments do not offend you.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,300
0
Unfortunately the likelihood is that your husband would have continued to deteriorate come what may, the disease is relentless and cannot be arrested. You may have actually done him a favour by moving him to a care home at just the right time as he was clearly already close to the point at which he could not be adequately cared for at home despite all your great effort. You have obviously done a heroic job looking after him and you have no reason to feel guilty.. He may well be better staying where he is from now on.
 

Pusskins

Registered User
Jun 6, 2020
325
0
New Zealand
This is a dilemma indeed. i don't know what the policies are in the UK regarding visiting during this pandemic. Do you have to be vaccinated before being allowed in? Clearly you need to provide a clear test which is understandable. At present in NZ, Delta has arrived, but it is confined to Auckland and an area just south of there. None in my neck of the woods. I have been worrying for days about what the situation will be here re visiting. I have not had the vaccination and don't intend to. I would not allow MH to have it either. If he was well and didn't have dementia, he would refuse it anyway. It seems fortunate now, that I neither have friends nor family around me. I was hoping to create a social life for myself, but it doesn't seem likely now, not until the pandemic dies out anyway. In the meantime. I wear a mask whenever I go shopping and only visit the supermarket, pharmacy and a couple of other shops. At present we are in Level 2 lockdown which gives us a lot of freedom, but I don't intend to socialise at all. Fortunately I leant through necessity years ago, to rely on my own company so can manage on my own. In the awful event that I might be told I can't visit unless I get the jab, sadly I will no longer be able to visit MH. He is my life and I love him as much now, if not more than the day we married, but nothing will coerce me to accept possible gene therapy under the guise of a vaccination. I pray it doesn't come to this, but the worry of it all is certainly messing with my head.
 
Last edited:

Violet Jane

Registered User
Aug 23, 2021
420
0
I’m afraid that I don’t understand your viewpoint on the vaccinations at all, Pusskins. The Delta variant is highly contagious and it is impossible to keep Covid out of care homes because staff live with family members who go to school / work / socialise with people outside their families. Covid kills more of the most vulnerable, and elderly people with dementia living in care homes are the most vulnerable of all. That’s why they were the highest priority for vaccination in the UK when the vaccines became available. At the beginning of the pandemic many, many thousands of care home residents were killed by Covid, not just in the UK but in other countries as well including countries which are regarded as having managed the pandemic well eg Canada. But it’s up to you, of course. If not being vaccinated is more important than seeing your husband then so be it. And if you’re concerned about the technology used in the Pfizer and Moderns vaccines then what about having the Astra Zeneca one which is more of a traditional vaccine?
 

Thethirdmrsc

Registered User
Apr 4, 2018
515
0
I am so sorry @Jan L and I know about the guilt and heartache. I put my husband into respite for 2 weeks in September, and although I got him out, I couldn’t cope due to his behaviour, as he is still quite physically fit. I had hoped that he would go into a care home, but the SS put him into a mental health hospital ward for assessment, almost 2 weeks ago, my worst nightmare. Dementia seems to be classed with all other mental health scenarios, and I don’t think that’s right. He is in a ward, eating with plastic cutlery, just does my head in.
 

None the Wiser

Registered User
Feb 3, 2020
248
0
So sorry to read all the difficulties and heart ache everyone is going through. @Jan L prior to my husband permanently going into a care home, my friends persuaded me that I needed a break and I put him in a home for respite. I had to go and collect him after a couple of days as he was so agitated. I too was shocked to see him. He was 68 and looked 90. The whole experience was dreadful. I felt such guilt for putting him through that.

I feel huge sadness now that he’s permanently in a home, and some guilt, but not as I did when he went into respite. The difference is that in the end I had no choice as I couldn’t keep him safe anymore, and my health was really suffering.

Guilt has been replaced by worry that he is OK as I’ve no real way of knowing due to COVID restrictions. I find I can’t relax, he’s always in the back of my mind. Not having any control over the situation has completely knocked my confidence. I now understand why people who are dependent on the state for one reason and another feel so helpless.

@Pusskins clearly COVID has not been virulent in NZ, maybe you‘re not aware of how deadly it is.161,000 have died so far, and many more have been hospitalized In GB. 14 died in the care home that my husband is now in. This wasn’t due to neglect or inappropriate care/nursing. The number of cases is rising again in Britain, but because a good number have been vaccinated the virus isn’t taking anything like as many lives. My understanding is that the vaccines don’t alter genes. I do hope you continue to stay safe.

@Thethirdmrsc, my husband is in a care home for people with mental health issues. I’m very pleased so far as it’s the first time he’s been with staff that seem to understand how to manage his behaviour. They seem very kind, tolerant and patient.And at the moment haven’t resorted to over medication. I hope their assessment helps your husband to get appropriate support.
 

Thethirdmrsc

Registered User
Apr 4, 2018
515
0
So sorry to read all the difficulties and heart ache everyone is going through. @Jan L prior to my husband permanently going into a care home, my friends persuaded me that I needed a break and I put him in a home for respite. I had to go and collect him after a couple of days as he was so agitated. I too was shocked to see him. He was 68 and looked 90. The whole experience was dreadful. I felt such guilt for putting him through that.

I feel huge sadness now that he’s permanently in a home, and some guilt, but not as I did when he went into respite. The difference is that in the end I had no choice as I couldn’t keep him safe anymore, and my health was really suffering.

Guilt has been replaced by worry that he is OK as I’ve no real way of knowing due to COVID restrictions. I find I can’t relax, he’s always in the back of my mind. Not having any control over the situation has completely knocked my confidence. I now understand why people who are dependent on the state for one reason and another feel so helpless.

@Pusskins clearly COVID has not been virulent in NZ, maybe you‘re not aware of how deadly it is.161,000 have died so far, and many more have been hospitalized In GB. 14 died in the care home that my husband is now in. This wasn’t due to neglect or inappropriate care/nursing. The number of cases is rising again in Britain, but because a good number have been vaccinated the virus isn’t taking anything like as many lives. My understanding is that the vaccines don’t alter genes. I do hope you continue to stay safe.

@Thethirdmrsc, my husband is in a care home for people with mental health issues. I’m very pleased so far as it’s the first time he’s been with staff that seem to understand how to manage his behaviour. They seem very kind, tolerant and patient.And at the moment haven’t resorted to over medication. I hope their assessment helps your husband to get appropriate support.
Thank you. I went to see him today, and he is out of isolation and it wasn’t as bad as I feared. The staff are lovely, and it is really that the dementia is progressing.