1. JayneB6367

    JayneB6367 Registered User

    Dec 18, 2013
    38
    Hi all,

    I know there is no "real answer" to this but as mum starts to settle in her new care home I have replaced worrying about her at home on her own, wandering off etc with self indulgent guilt about not visiting often enough.

    It's a 100 mile, 2 hours each way round trip and I am only managing about once a week, occasionally twice with a full time job, and a husband who has been patient but deserves to see me too but rather then enjoying the time I don't go and making the most of this time I just feel guilty but can't face the journey more then that, my journey is through London and the first 8 miles takes an hour just to clear the London traffic alone!

    I know though this is my problem though not mums!

    Also not sure if i should call the home every day I don't go to check in on her or leave them to it knowing they will call me if anything is wrong.

    I am just moaning! I feel sad when I see her and bad when I don't!
     
  2. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    7,475
    Yorkshire
    It's one of those 'how long is the string?' questions isn't it.
    Your mum hasn't been in the home so very long, so of course you are concerned about seeing her and knowing how she is. And you are so used to shouldering all that burden of care yourself - it takes a while to hand over the baton and not keep trying to snatch it back.
    It does seem that you are happy that the staff are treating her well and that she is safe there; so maybe for now see her the once a week and call once day, just to set your mind at rest.
    However if you happen to have a full day and the call doesn't get made, so be it - and if you happen to have something happening another day which takes your mind onto another issue until the day after, well that's fine. Maybe even try calling your husband instead - ask him out for a coffee??
    If you build up the trust that the staff will contact you whenever they need to, but won't be checking in over trifling issues, my guess is you'll feel more content to call less often.
    Dad's been in his home about 6 months and I live close to his home. Actually I was beginning to resent visiting so often and for so long - so I've been reducing my visits. He's safe and the staff contact me when necessary. I've just had a self enforced week away as I had flu, and actually it's done me good.
    That 'guilt trip' will try to take hold whatever we do, so take the time to work out a routine that works for you and don't be concerned about breaking out from it sometimes.
    Best wishes
     
  3. Soobee

    Soobee Registered User

    Aug 22, 2009
    2,734
    South
    Totally understand your comment "I feel sad when I see her and bad when I don't".

    I went to see my mum twice a week at most but felt awful about it when I didn't go. I often wish I'd seen her more but I don't know if it would have helped either of us!

    Not sure there's an answer, just go when you can and try not too feel too bad when you can't.
     
  4. Emac

    Emac Registered User

    Mar 2, 2013
    171
    How much is enough?

    Hi Jayne. I am in a similar position. Mum is in a care home ten minutes away from me. She's been there for nearly five weeks now. I visit twice a week, though my Dad sees her every other day and my sister sees her three times a week . I feel guilty about not visiting more, but am trying to hold onto my job, have time for a life and do practical stuff for mum (organize clothes, admin etc.) and Dad who is now on his own. I think twice a week when you have such a long journey is nothing short of heroic :) so give yourself a pat on the back! It's also one of these situations where however much you give you will never feel it is enough. My thoughts are to do what you can do lovingly and cheerfully without feeling stressed and resentful and without sacrificing your own and your husband's wellbeing. There may be times when you will want to visit more- should she become unwell, or you have concerns over her care, but if you can ease back for now then you will have the energy to step it up when needed. Take care.
     
  5. CeliaThePoet

    CeliaThePoet Registered User

    Dec 7, 2013
    614
    Buffalo, NY, USA
    Jayne, I have felt just as you do. My mother is in an assisted living facility 30 minutes from me. I visit once a week, usually on the weekend. This had been our pattern for the two years before the move. Prior to that, we could go months without a visit, as we're not emotionally close. But, I'm her only family and she has no close friends. I also work full time and have a few other obligations on weekends. At the first, I visited every few days but she settled better when I wasn't there to fix or do things for her. She's been there 2 years now.

    I suggest you begin as you feel you can continue. In your case, I would probably strike a balance of every other week. You still may feel spread thin. You may not be able to be all things to all people until this becomes the new normal. Be gentle with yourself, as you need to be in good shape for whatever may be ahead.
     
  6. MrsTerryN

    MrsTerryN Registered User

    Dec 17, 2012
    773
    I also visit once ,at the moment. The reason behind it is I am about to go on an overseas holiday with my husband.
    Initially I visited at least once a day. Though as Celia has said mum was used to an arranged visit weekly (not withstanding emergency calls for dad )
    Mum did seem to deal better with less visits as her dementia has progressed.
    The rationale behind it was mum was used to once weekly visit .
    Having said that mum now doesn't appear to have a sense of time passing , so once I return I will go twice a week and see how she is

    My mother is 10 mins from my home . She and I picked it due to the proximity to my home
     
  7. Quilty

    Quilty Registered User

    Aug 28, 2014
    1,056
    GLASGOW
    I am lucky that my Mum is in a care home in our village only 5 minute drive away. I have been visiting her every night for years, since my Dad died. With her dementia she stopped remembering I had been to visit or seemed surprised to see me. I took this as a signal that she was safe and happy and now visit 4 nights a week. Its still very hard and an emotional drain on me.

    If you feel your Mum is safe and cared then you need to try to make peace with yourself. Make it clear to the staff that you want to know if anything is wrong. You can then stop worrying if she is ok.

    Caring for a parent with dementia is like having another child. You wont stop thinking and wondering how she is. You do need to kill the guilt. You are doing your best and taking care of your Mum. We all know how hard it is. It will get to be "normal".
    Lots of love
    Quilty
     
  8. Sailaway_today

    Sailaway_today Registered User

    Sep 18, 2015
    7
    My mom has been in a home for 4 weeks and we have been trying to visit every other day, but she forgets that we have been to see her and accuses us of shutting her in this prison and not taking her out.
    It's so hard to balance everything, I start a new job in December and won't have the flexibility that I currently have, so I am sure that is not going to go down well
     

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