1. Sabato

    Sabato Registered User

    Jan 18, 2006
    14
    Sardinia
    Hello,
    My mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's at Christmas. It was a 'label' that we knew was coming. She lives in the NE of England & I live in Sardinia & my sister lives in australia. As sisters we are very close & share our feelings by e-mail & now talk via SKPE for free. I'm sending for brochures for local care homes, she is self funding so we could (!) have a lot of choice.
    We may be too early but we want to be ahead of the game, especially living away. My visits are packed with sorting out more & more care, visiting family & friends & of course fussing & spoiling Mum rotten!
    Just sharing is so helpful to me, I wondered why I was blurting things out & then crying & then being positive in the next breath. It's normal by the way!!
    I still find it hard to think that one day she won't know me. I'm already crying at the thought.
    That's all for now, just wanted to join and hopefully can help you too.
    I desperately want to do the right thing, say the right thing to make Mum's situation easier for her. So any tips and advice would be invaluable.

    Regards, Sabato (it's Italian for Saturday-my favourite day)
     
  2. Lynne

    Lynne Registered User

    Jun 3, 2005
    3,433
    Suffolk,England
    Hello Sabato, and welcome

    In my opinion you can never start acquiring knowledge about something "too early", even if you won't need to use it for some time, hopefully.

    We all TRY to do & say the right thing, but sometimes things get skewed off track by the way in which AD confuses communications, and things don't quite work out the way intended. When that happens, don't beat yourself up about it, you can only do your best.

    Regards
     
  3. Canadian Joanne

    Canadian Joanne Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 8, 2005
    16,105
    Toronto, Canada
    I think it's a good thing that you are checking into care homes now. It's much more difficult if there's a sudden emergency & you have to pick a place immediately. Go visit them, poke all around, talk to other visitors. I would also ask about staff turnover - if the staff is relatively stable, it's a good sign, in my opinion.

    It's the staff who make the care home so don't be seduced by nice decor etc.

    Good luck.
     
  4. jc141265

    jc141265 Registered User

    Sep 16, 2005
    836
    Australia
    Sabato,

    Your mother may not forget who you are, it is not always inevitable. As you said 'Alzheimer's' is a label, and it encompasses a LOT of different dementia symptoms. My father is in high care after 6 yrs with the disease but although he pretty much incapacitated he still knows me very well and even my brother who can only visit once or twice a year! Dad has early onset dementia however so I am unsure if this symptom of not forgetting just relates to the younger dementia sufferers or not. Nonetheless I wanted to give you some hope in this area.

    Secondly, homes are not always a bad thing. Homes give an opportunity for your loved one to be cared for physically by trained staff which allows family members to be free to just love their mother/father/husband/wife etc instead of being completely overwhelmed all of the time and thus often emotionally unavailable by the day to day caring. Homes don't have to be bad places if you can organise regular visits and in visits keep an eye on how your loved one is being treated and take action when you are not satisfied with their care. Homes can offer security, a stable routine and a place without the pressures and stresses of having to try to function like a 'normal' person, that some people like my father seem to flourish in, whereas at home he was always stressed and exhausted.

    Always not far away for support and anecdotes from my own experiences,
     
  5. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

    Mar 21, 2003
    6,630
    London
    Hi Sabato,

    Great advice from everyone and carry on enjoying your mother.
    The only bit of advice that I'd throw in is to sort out any financial issues as soon as possible and and EPA if you don't already have one. Lots of people forget this due to the demands of caring and getting to grips with the situation.

    Hope that helps
    Craig
     
  6. Lynne

    Lynne Registered User

    Jun 3, 2005
    3,433
    Suffolk,England
    Oh yes, the EPA

    Good advice from Craig there regarding Enduring Power of Attorney, to which I would add:-

    Make sure you know where the finished document is stored; :eek:
    My Mum has put hers "in a safe place", but now cannot remember where it is! (OK, I can probably find it if I turn out all her cupboards & drawers, but I don't want to distress her needlessly unless it's really urgently required.)
     
  7. Kathleen

    Kathleen Registered User

    Mar 12, 2005
    639
    West Sussex
    Hi Sabato

    I remember crying when my Mum was diagnosed and knew the day would probably come when she no longer knew who I was.

    When that day arrived I felt rejected and truly grief stricken. Time passed and now, a few months on, I know that although she rarely knows me as her daughter, she always seems pleased to see me and I love her as much as ever.

    Our relationship has changed enormously, but she is, and always will be, my Mum. That is a bond that even AD can't break.

    Good luck with finding the right care for your Mum, just take things step by step and you will get there.

    Kathleen
     

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