Is it the end?

Kaths

Registered User
Mar 2, 2021
35
0
I've read the advice on the website and spoken to a local hospice but I find others stories informative. My Mum has late stage vascular dementia, she sleeps, a lot! She's exhausted, when she is awake she looks like just existing is tiring. I really struggle to get her to go anywhere, just a few months ago she enjoyed a drive out or lunch somewhere, now she just can't be bothered/hasn't the energy. She doesn't even want to go to church which has been a big part of her life. Her appetite has decreased, she's always been partial to cake/biscuits etc (in moderation) but this is no longer the case. She has many of the general symptoms of late stage dementia also, but...is this the end?
On a personal note, I'm conflicted, my Dad died earlier this year and I'm not relishing the thought of being parentless at 34 years old but...I also just want her to slip away now, she has no quality of life, I don't want her to get worse, she's was always an active, intelligent person with a quick whit and now she just sits, sleeps and barely speaks.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
25,296
0
South coast
Hello @Kaths and welcome to Talking Point

Your mum is obviously in the advanced stages og dementia, but this does not necessarily mean that she is at the end. People with dementia can remain at this stage for quite a while, maybe a couple of years. On the other hand she may start declining rapidly and pass away within the next few weeks. Unfortunately, with dementia you never know.

When people with dementia reach the end they stop eating and drinking entirely and become semi-comatose. They are obviously deteriorating quite rapidly and it is recognisable.

Until then, dont worry if she doesnt want to go out. When mum reached this stage I would often play music that she would recognise, or read stories that she knew from her childhood like Whinnie the Pooh. I also found a book of poetry in her home and read out some of the poems. I found that she knew quite a lot of them and would sometimes recite them with me from memory. Sometimes, just sitting with an arm round them and holding their hand is enough.
xx
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
74,685
0
73
Dundee
Welcome from me too @Kaths.

I’m sorry to hear about your mum but as @canary says how she is now doesn’t necessarily mean she is near the end. I wouldn’t worry about her not wanting to do things she wanted to before and just go with being there for her.

Thinking of you and wishing you strength.
 

Kaths

Registered User
Mar 2, 2021
35
0
Thank you for your replies. I do sit with her a lot, I see her everyday and I went part time at work to have more time to spend with her, we are friends as well as mother/daughter. I put some music on and rub moisturiser into her hands or feet or sometimes just hold her hand. I might read some bible stories to her and see how that goes, thank you for the suggestion, her religion is very important to her. There seems to be a dark looming cloud, she has heart problems as well and I suppose that will contribute to her overall energy levels. Hopefully she stays as is for a while and doesn't decline, we'll see. Thank you.
 

Gosling

Volunteer Host
Aug 2, 2022
1,905
0
South West UK
Hello @Kaths . You have already had a lot of good advice from others here, but all I would add is as far as you say you are conflicted; it is quite normal ( well I had the same with my Mum) of not wanting to lose her, but in the same breath, wanting her to pass due to quality of life etc. Please don't feel guilty about that..
Wishing you strength to get through this difficult time.
 

Xhanlbxx

Registered User
Aug 31, 2019
182
0
Hiya , I really know it is hard because I am the same age as you and I watched my dad go through the same at age 61 .

During the advanced stages you will notice that she will sleep a lot more and struggle to do more , the main objective is to keep her comfortable and try and bring the things she loves to her.

It is a very hard journey accepting the change and who your parent was but just value what you do have , I used to play dads favourite songs , give him lots of cuddles and do gameshow quiz’s for him on the television .

If you need any support don’t ever hesitate to contact me
 

Ree123

Registered User
Nov 13, 2016
27
0
Thank you for your replies. I do sit with her a lot, I see her everyday and I went part time at work to have more time to spend with her, we are friends as well as mother/daughter. I put some music on and rub moisturiser into her hands or feet or sometimes just hold her hand. I might read some bible stories to her and see how that goes, thank you for the suggestion, her religion is very important to her. There seems to be a dark looming cloud, she has heart problems as well and I suppose that will contribute to her overall energy levels. Hopefully she stays as is for a while and doesn't decline, we'll see. Thank you.
Kaths, you sound like an incredible daughter, be gentle on yourself.
My elderly mother too finds solace in her religion. When she had her stroke last year, a member of her clergy visited her in the hospital and gave her the sacrament of the sick. I'm wondering if it's possible to contact the religious leader of her church and ask if they could arrange a home visit for her. Perhaps a blessing might give everyone spiritual strength at this difficult time. Take care
 

Kaths

Registered User
Mar 2, 2021
35
0
Thank you all for your kindness. Although I wouldn't wish the situation on anyone it's a comfort to know I'm not alone. I have a wonderful partner but we met just after my Mum got ill so he's never known her without dementia, it was always my Dad I talked to. Until recently she had been attending church on and off, my brothers were helping to take her but they're not at all reliable and it's more trouble than it's worth asking them, and with her being so tired now it's difficult. The pastor has said they'd visit but I think I'll ask again and see if I can set something regular up, thanks for the suggestion. She does have friends from a previous church she attended who visit as well. She's a c of e lisenced reader and used to visit unwell people/take communion to people's homes etc - how the tables turn!