1. jcsatujp

    jcsatujp New member

    Jun 24, 2019
    Today, a gas safety valve for the cooker was installed at my mother-in-law's.

    My husband and his brother are now looking for plausible explanations they can use when she starts asking why her cooker won't work.

    She frequently makes herself fried egg sandwiches despite carers coming in 3 times a day to cook and serve her meals. It won't be too long before she realises there's something wrong.

    Any top tips from those of you who have already been in this situation would be appeciated.

  2. Malalie

    Malalie Registered User

    Sep 1, 2016
    Hello JC and welcome to the forum.

    I never had to do this with MIL, although there were more and more pans with burnt bottoms soaking as time went along. I presume that you must have had some serious incidents which must be very worrying.

    I don't know how bad your MILs memory is, but had it been my MIL, I would just have acknowledged what she said about not getting the cooker to work, have a bit of a fiddle, be exasperated on her behalf, and then say that you will arrange for the gas engineer to come round and fix it. The next time that she mentioned it would have been the first time for my MIL in her mind, and I would just repeat the conversation. I don't know if your MIL is that bad though.....

    It would be nice if the carers could offer her a fried egg sandwich now and again though..... (Quite partial myself too......)

    I'm sure that there will be lots of others in your situation who will come along with advice soon.
  3. Rosie66

    Rosie66 Registered User

    Jun 19, 2019
    Hi JC
    Yes, totes agree with Malalie above, do the whole agreeing and distracting routine and if necessry blame something else. Reassure that it will all be okay soon, and hopefully there won't be too much hand wringing. All the best.
  4. Stripey3

    Stripey3 Registered User

    May 29, 2019
    It’s a difficult one..
    I had a similar issue, Dad was putting tins of food in the oven, thankfully with the lid removed. I had the gas disconnected and told him the cooker was broken. Arranged for an engineer to come out to look at it in his presence. Told him the part needed for the cooker was no longer available and bought him ready meals to heat in the microwave. MIL won’t be able to prepare fried egg sandwiches but it removes the danger.
    Is there a local cafe nearby where you could take her every now and then for a fried egg sandwich as a treat?
    Very best wishes
  5. jcsatujp

    jcsatujp New member

    Jun 24, 2019
    In addition to visiting during the week with shopping, clean laundry etc, we do spend all day with her on Sundays which includes us cooking a roast dinner so we will be able to 'get the cooker working' but it will stop working as soon as we leave. Realistically, the carers won't be able to cook an egg sandwich as to turn the gas back on involves removing the kick plate at the base of the cooker, then turning the valve on, cooking and then going back under the cooker to turn the gas off. My mother-in-law always lurks in the kitchen watching what the carers do so will ask too many questions about what is happening. However, we do have occasions where we cancel the carers calls so we can spend more time with her and not have to worry about them coming in to cook, so we could do that and make her a fried egg sandwich then or take her to a cafe for one at lunchtime as well.

    One of the reasons for the carers is that her dementia has resulted in burnt pans on the hob, frozen ready meals incorrectly cooked in the gas oven and burnt food from the microwave all because her capacity to look at and be aware of cooking times and temperatures on food has dimished to the point of being unsafe.

    We were dreading her putting another saucepan or frying pan on the hob and getting distracted as happens more frequently now, leaving the food to burn or worse.

    Thanks for your input, we know we are far from alone trying to cope with a person with dementia.

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