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Live in Companion Required

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by cointron, Feb 9, 2015.

  1. cointron

    cointron Registered User

    Feb 9, 2015
    My Dad is 69 was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers about 4 ½ years ago now and is perfectly fit and healthy apart from the memory loss. He still lives alone and has a couple of people who go in twice a day most days to cook and clean for him. We would like to find a companion to move in permanently with him as we think the worst thing for him at the moment is the loneliness particularly in the evenings. He does get himself out and about during the day and visits family and friends but we think he would really benefit from having someone to chat to or watch TV with. We are really struggling to find a way of contacting any suitable candidates. We thought that he could provide a home for someone perhaps of a similar age who is also lonely and so the arrangement would benefit both parties. Has anyone else done the same thing and if so how did you go about it? By the way he lives in Kent!
  2. tre

    tre Registered User

    Sep 23, 2008
    someone I know got a wonderful carer from the Czech republic as an au pair for the elderly. Her English was superb. She looked after his mum for several years and was like a daughter to her. She had worked as a carer in her home country.
  3. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    How do you define companion? Would you pay that person to look after him? Because someone with dementia need carers when they can't look after themselves anymore and he will get worse. That situation is bound to get legally complicated, and I do not think a mere companion will want to take on the responsibility to look after another person full-time including dealing with authorities when all they were after is someone to play bridge with.

    Maybe start looking into more conventional methods first like day centres and sitting services to alleviate boredom?
  4. opaline

    opaline Registered User

    Nov 13, 2014
    I'm not sure this idea would work, what if they hated each other? You would need to speak to your dad's SW, she may know the very person, good luck, x
  5. HelenInBC

    HelenInBC Registered User

    Mar 23, 2013
    I think it's important to realize that being a companion to someone who has dementia would be a challenge, even for an experienced caregiver who has dementia care training. The general public with no experience with dementia may not deal with his problems in a therapuetic way.

    For example, the other residents who lived in my mother's apartment building would often get quite angry, offended or upset by some of my mother's behaviours or comments. They had no idea how to respond to her and would often shout or be unkind to her, which of course made things much worse.

    Just keep this in mind.
  6. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    SW London
    'The Lady' magazine used to be the way to find live in helpers, if it's still going. However I do think it would be rather a tall order to expect anyone to be a companion to someone with dementia unless they were paid to do so, as well being provided with bed and board. And they would need to understand dementia (and not just think they do) in order to realise what they might be taking on. Dementia can get worse quite quickly and it would not be at all beyond the bounds of possibility for your dad suddenly to forget that the person was living with him, and think he was an intruder, etc.

    Also, I think you would need to be extremely careful, and have sorted out and activated P of A for your dad's finances first, since people with dementia are particularly vulnerable to financial abuse. I heard not long ago of a horrific case involving a live in carer - she was extremely clever and plausible and had seemed ideal at first.
  7. Chemmy

    Chemmy Registered User

    Nov 7, 2011
    Spouses are the ultimate 'live in companions', but read around this forum for a bit and see how difficult some find it to live with someone with dementia, even with they truly love the person and been married to them for forty or fifty years.

    Even if you found the perfect person for the next few months, say, what happens when your dad deteriorates (as he inevitably will)? At what stage would a companion turn into a carer? They are two very different roles.

    Also when circumstances change, they'd not just be losing a job, they'd be losing their home, which could be very awkward on both sides.

    I'd think very long and hard before going down this route.
  8. cointron

    cointron Registered User

    Feb 9, 2015
    Hi Thank you for your post. Do you know how your friend found the carer from the Czech Republic? Did they use an agency?
  9. Brightly

    Brightly Registered User

    Feb 19, 2015
    Hi Cointron

    My father was widowed about a year after he was diagnosed with Pick's disease at around the age of 72 (he died several years ago now). We had quite a good experience with Homeshare who will provide live in companionship in exchange for rent free accommodation. It worked quite well for a couple of years until he could no longer manage independently and moved to a care home. I seem to remember that they give about 10-15 hours of service a week, and it can be something like preparing an evening meal and watching a tv programme or just chatting a few evenings a week. You have the chance to interview the people in depth. It depends a bit on where your father lives, and whether he has a spare bedroom but it might be an option.

  10. cointron

    cointron Registered User

    Feb 9, 2015
    Hi Tess

    Thank you so much, I'll look them up.
  11. tre

    tre Registered User

    Sep 23, 2008
    It was via an agency. I have sent you a PM with details.
  12. cointron

    cointron Registered User

    Feb 9, 2015
    Thank you, I will follow it up.

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