1. Ballykeith

    Ballykeith Registered User

    Aug 26, 2013
    24
    Peterborough
    I'm my mum's sole carer and spend ten hours with her every day as she would be completely lost on her own. Every evening is really like an interrogation as she will constantly ask me questions - the same questions again and again - either about the family (all dead), the bedtime routine, or about something on the television. I really don't get ten seconds without a question and this will go on from around 7.30 when we get in from our outing until I leave at 10.30. Sometimes I will go home for an hour to preserve my sanity and I know that she will just lie down on the bed. She's not upset about that, though she likes me to be there. I just wondered whether anyone is in a similar situation?
     
  2. exhausted 2015

    exhausted 2015 Registered User

    Jul 5, 2015
    624
    Female
    stoke on trent
    Hi just to let you know that you are not alone and suppose that many carers go through this... I care for my dad 24/7 and yes every evening and early morning I have the same questions over and over again.. For example at night I leave his vest on under his pjs and every evening he asks me over and over 'what is this, when does this come off " I have a carer in once a day to help him in the morning to get washed and dressed but every morning he says he can't remember having someone in every day.. The list of things /questions is endless and often feel like screaming or tearing my hair out but always manage to answer them in the same calm way
    Hope it helps to know that you are not alone xx
     
  3. Ballykeith

    Ballykeith Registered User

    Aug 26, 2013
    24
    Peterborough
    Thanks exhausted. I just wanted to 'share' as I find the relentlessness of my mum's questioning a bit surreal as well as exhausting. At its worst it feels like a form of torture. I know that I can't go on like this indefinitely and will have to cross the care home threshold so that I'm not left a mental wreck.
     
  4. exhausted 2015

    exhausted 2015 Registered User

    Jul 5, 2015
    624
    Female
    stoke on trent
    Hi yes I fully understand it is just a matter of time with me too I'm trying to hang on for as long as I can but sadly in the near future I am going to have to look at residential care. Dad does not sleep much at night but will sleep for most of the day. Hence I am truly Exhausted
    Hope that you will do what is best for both of you... You need to think of yourself too xx
     
  5. Ballykeith

    Ballykeith Registered User

    Aug 26, 2013
    24
    Peterborough
    After two years of ten-hour days without a day off I did put mum into respite for a week. It was a marvellous rest for me. The home reported that mum seemed fine although she did regularly ask for me. When I collected her at the end of the week she was remarkably calm, so I think that she was probably happier here than at home. A positive side to a good home - this was an extremely pricey dementia-focussed place - is the social interaction. With me as mum's only carer we are very isolated. I know that there is still a stigma around care homes but I do think, that once I make the transition, my mum could settle in one & we could then enjoy our time together with much of the daily stresses taken away. Yours in solidarity, exhausted xx
     
  6. Patricia Alice

    Patricia Alice Registered User

    Mar 2, 2015
    179
    I was where you are now 12 months ago. My sister and I had at least 50 calls each every day from 7am until we got to her at lunchtime until we left in the evening, she rang even when the carers were there, she knew our numbers parrot fashion and dialled them relentlessly. She would ask the same questions over and over again and we tried to answer as if it was the first time, but it did wear very thin at times.

    We finally had to admit defeat looking after her in December and move her to care. Sadly she has never settled. At times I wish I could put the clock back but it was getting an impossible task, even for two of us.

    Perhaps you could have a week's respite for your mom every few months, I am not sure how many you are allowed to take unless you are self-funded or even a day centre just to give you a break.
     
  7. Boldredrosie

    Boldredrosie Registered User

    Mar 13, 2012
    237
    The questioning is exhausting isn't it? Bit like when you're child is a toddler and exploring the world; why's the sky blue? Where does the dark go when you switch on the light? Only with the elderly with dementia it's nearly not so rewarding. Even understanding that the relentless questioning comes from a place of anxiety, it's hard to deal with when it's you having to answer them. I've tried the diversionary tactics that many experts recommend but with my mother this hasn't worked as she has a obsessional nature. My solution has been to bring in carers but I recognise that's not an option for everyone. They get most of the questioning and the rants, but they get to go home.
     
  8. arielsmelody

    arielsmelody Registered User

    Jul 16, 2015
    511
    I've not been in your situation but it sounds exhausting. For your own sake, can you change the evening routine slightly - find an excuse to spend time in a different room, make it a habit to go home for an hour or two, start the bedtime routine a bit earlier, something like that? Although your mum is unwell, if you are looking after her long-term there has to be a balance between what the two of you want/need, and if you can take a break without it harming her, you need to think about yourself as well.
     
  9. Ballykeith

    Ballykeith Registered User

    Aug 26, 2013
    24
    Peterborough
    thanks guys

    Thank you guys for your valued contributions. I posted this because I've begun to feel that things have gotten too much for me. My mother has been a good mother to me throughout my life so I want to see that she has as good a quality of life as possible now. That said, I am not a Mother Theresa figure and have come to feel washed out by managing mum's condition all by myself. I will try to manage my needs and hers as best I can for now by taking breaks - even little ones can keep you going. In the coming months I intend to cross the Rubicon and place her in a care home. She is still averse to this (albeit she did put her own mother in a home and I don't remember granny being any worse than mum is now - different perhaps) but I'm hopeful that she will settle in a good home, will benefit from the 24/7 company and we will be able to enjoy quality time together without me feeling the total weight of responsibility for her and having little quality of life of my own. She often shows unhappiness at home anyway - "I hate it here ... this place!" - so I have to look at the elusive 'bigger picture'. If it takes deception to place her - 'the doctor says you need a rest', 'this is just for a little while' etc - and to minimise agitation, then so be it. I will speak with social services soon and express my position.
     
  10. exhausted 2015

    exhausted 2015 Registered User

    Jul 5, 2015
    624
    Female
    stoke on trent
    Hi. I tried dad in respite also for a week and I worried myself for nothing because he was absolutely fine and I caught up on much needed sleep I hope that you are able to find somewhere suitable for your mum and then yes you could regain some quality time together again
    All the best xx
     
  11. Liz57

    Liz57 Registered User

    Dec 22, 2013
    184
    I was in the same situation as you earlier this year and found mum had ended up with a phone bill in excess of £200 because of the incessant phone calls when I wasn't with her - which was only a few hours a day! Moving her into a care home wasn't a good experience for me but after a couple of months she has settled reasonably well and for all the reasons you have identified. She's well cared for by lovely staff who really do care and not just go through the motions. she has company all day, eats properly and despite being diagnosed with breast cancer a few weeks ago, I know she's going to be well looked after.

    My visits are pleasant - albeit she doesn't remember them but she does seem to know who I am most of the time. She thinks she's in a school working! I have my life back and according to my friends - and the care home staff - I look ten years younger!

    We can't do it all. As much as everyone wants to, the reality is that this is bigger than one person can handle. Bigger than most families can handle.

    Take care.
     
  12. Ballykeith

    Ballykeith Registered User

    Aug 26, 2013
    24
    Peterborough
    thank you exhausted and Liz! Good to hear positive experiences. My mum's evening questioning really is relentless and that's why I used the header 'Interrogation'! I've just got home after 3 1/2 hours of questioning and it really is question after question after question. The worst time of day though is when I arrive from my part-time job at 12.30. She will just repeat the phrase 'I don't know what's going on'. This will only abate once I get us out and about. In the afternoon she will relax to some degree. There is still questioning - 'Where are we going?', 'What happens next?' - but this does not have the remorseless character of the evenings. That one week off was great, but once it's over it's just business as usual! With things being so taxing I have little time or energy to think about finding a care home but I really must. I may face hostility from my mother but, again, I must just take this on the chin. What a disease this is that impinges so forcibly on family members - in my case, and many others, 'member' singular.
     

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