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Lots of pressure and dont know what to do

Fscogirl

Registered User
Jul 20, 2020
13
0
Hi everyone,

I have previously posted about looking after my FIL who has Vascular dementia. His dementia seems to effect him with his mobility (he walks with a limp and can be very unbalanced). He has became doubly incontinenent at times and even when he does know when to go he doesn't know how to clean himself properly.
He has a pretty good short term memory considering, but wouldn't know how to cook, wash and clean for himself. He would live on biscuits and not wash or change his clothes.

It is myself and my fiancé (his son) who live and care for him. We have a 2 year old and another baby due this summer. We currently have a wet room, fall alarms, a carer twice a day (45 mins then 10 mins) and day care one morning a week (we have to provide transport). It is a battle everyday to get him to use a walking stick or fall alarm etc. We also run a busy dairy farm too so often I'm on my own with FIL and toddler.

Social work have been pushing for a care home as they feel he needs 24 hour care and its too much for our family.
It has been a constant battle with my OHs 3 sisters. 2 have agreed to take him occasionally. 1 offers 1 weekend a month (Thursday night to Saturday afternoon). Another offers once/twice a week 12pm to 8pm (again we need to provide transport home as she has a toddler too) but OH unwilling to take this offer as she's refusing vaccine and he doesn't want to risk mine and babies health with vaccines and testing.
The other has walked away from her dad completely.

Iam now under pressure with everything as social work want him in respite for 2 weeks, then to 4 weeks if he settles, with the look of permanent care if all goes well. This would be around the time of birth. I also have the added complication of my consultant not being happy with my caring role (higher risk pregnancy) and has written to social work how she wants 6 weeks covered around my birth.

I guess the gist of it is I feel so guiily and overwhelmed with the whole situation. I know my FIL doesn't want to be in a care home but at the same time we don't have a life either. We have only had a day as a small family once in over a year because of covid and work commitments. I feel the family will forever resent me for their dad being put in a home. They have stated many times " a care home would kill him".
I don't want him in a care home but I want our life back too.

Is anyone been or have been in this kind of situation, particularly when it's not even your own parent. Feel so stressed and im worried how it will effect our unborn child :(.
 

Old Flopsy

Registered User
Sep 12, 2019
251
0
Hi @Fscogirl . I really do hope that you take up the offer of respite care for FIL. Many on this forum long for respite for their loved ones and struggle to get it.

His vascular dementia will only get worse.

Your priority must be your unborn child- if FIL falls would you be tempted to try to lift him so endangering your pregnancy.

It seems to be in everyone's best interest to go for the respite. FIL may not want it but it's about what he needs- and your needs as a family are so important too.
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
6,255
0
N Ireland
Hello @Fscogirl.

It's an unfortunate truth that many families don't agree on how care should be provided.

It's also a truth that there comes a time when the 'needs' of a person with dementia outweigh the 'wants' of that person or family members. It's a tough decision(I've had to face the thought of respite for my wife) but I would be reluctant to ignore the advice of Social Services and the medics.
 

My Mum's Daughter

Registered User
Feb 8, 2020
108
0
Try to mentally reverse roles and I'm so sorry for sounding harsh.

If it was your son and his pregnant fiancée caring for you; the fiancée has a toddler and a high risk pregnancy. Her consultant is not being happy with her caring role and she is worried about your unborn grandchild. You don't really want to be in a care home but a place has been offered.

Now, what would you do? Would you want to stay at home and let the situation to continue or would you packing your bags for that care home?
 

marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,397
0
Scotland
In laws can be a big problem in this kind of situation. You must put your children and partner first and let the sisters in law think and do what they like. If you end up ill they will not come to your aid so take the offer of long term respite without any guilt whatsoever.

I know what I’m talking about as I had to take on a disabled sister in law with mild dementia and get social work on board as there were no volunteers from her blood relatives. In fact she loves the care home we got her into and although I am still involved it is from a healthy distance.
Please listen to your doctor they don’t give that kind of advice lightly,
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
15,541
0
South coast
Socia; Services do not advise a care home lightly, in fact they usually do everything they possibly can to keep the person with dementia at home, possibly longer than is best. So if they are advising a care home then I think it is is absolutely necessary. I would also not want to ignore your doctors recommendation about a high risk pregnancy. You do not want to risk losing this baby.

No one wants to move to a care home, but if you wait till your MIL agrees, you will wait forever. Family may not be happy about her move, but they are not willing to offer help and therefore, in my books, have not earned the right to object. If they so desperately want to keep her out of a care home, then they are more than welcome to provide 24/7 care themselves.

It comes down to what is needed rather than what individuals want and you have to look at the needs of the whole family. The needs of your unborn child, your toddler, you and your husband matter too and cannot be trumped by the wishes of your MIL.
 

lemonbalm

Registered User
May 21, 2018
1,715
0
Hello @Fscogirl

It's very easy for people not directly involved in the care of a person to say that a care home will kill them. I feel for you, as you sound to be an extremely nice and decent person who really doesn't deserve this emotional blackmail approach from the family. You've been all things to all people for quite some time by the sound of it.

Your sisters-in-law have not offered much at all in the way of support, not enough to make any real difference to you, and it is quite possible that they will let you down at short notice. Being moved around between family members who are not used to caring is very unlikely to do your father-in-law much good and respite really does sound the only sensible solution. If you don't try it, you will never know. He may even surprise you by settling in and wanting to stay. You have advice from a medical person and social services. I hope you can find the confidence to stand up to your sisters-in-law and take that advice.
 

Rosettastone57

Registered User
Oct 27, 2016
1,591
0
I can only agree with other posters. Take the care home option. Your father in law's wishes and that of your sisters in law should not override your health and the welfare of your family.
 

Banjomansmate

Registered User
Jan 13, 2019
3,018
0
Dorset
Family say “A care home could kill him” - unlikely but a crisis with him could possibly cause you major problems and put you and/or your baby in danger, which do they consider should be your priority?
 

NickyK

New member
Nov 24, 2020
6
0
I can say from experience that a care home is absolutely the best option, not just for you and your family, but for your FIL's safety. The feeling of relief you will feel when you know they are safe and being looked after, will be revolutionary for you. The best way to approach it is via the 'respite' route. This way everyone can look at it as just a short rest, not permanent, but hopefully, when everyone sees that the care home isn't the end of the world, they will agree to extend the stay.
 

Fscogirl

Registered User
Jul 20, 2020
13
0
Thanks everyone, tomorrow the family are having a meeting about how we are approaching the next few months.....

Its been a rather chaotic few weeks with my OH (which I'm most annoyed about) and one of his sisters stating that they don't think a care home will be good for his "mental wellbeing".

What about my health and my children's welfare? Don't see this meeting going well at all. I think it may be a "walk away completely" from my role as his carer. Feeling a bit demented and can't even look forward to the birth of our new little one without worrying!
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
3,550
0
Hi @Fscogirl, if your partner is busy working on your farm he probably doesn't realise the amount of work you do for your father, or the fact that his needs will be in conflict with the needs of your toddler, not to mention you.
Do you have family or friends you could go and visit to re-coup your own strength and to enable the family to see how much care your FiL really needs. Certainly if you don't get some respite sorted for him in a managed way it sounds as though it may be forced on the family if you are sent to hospital due to your high-risk pregnancy.
Hope the meeting goes better than you hope.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
1,956
0
High Peak
Either FIL goes in a care home or - if family still object - he must go to live with one of them.

You absolutely have to put your foot down at this family meeting and insist everyone listens to what the experts are saying - that he needs 24/7 care from a team of carers not just you running round with a big high-risk pregnancy and a toddler. Tell them straight: you simply can't and won't do it anymore. You, your child and your baby (and your husband!) have the right to a decent life.

If there are any objections from the 2 sisters, tell them straight that you'd be happy to pack his bags so he can move in with one of them. I'm willing to bet they each have lots of excuses why that isn't possible, yet they expect you to do it! You'll have to point out that your health is at risk here and that you are just not prepared to put FIL's health before yours and your children. Don't forget, there is no truth in the idea that going in a care home will necessarily be detrimental to him - many people thrive in care.
 

LittleSue

New member
May 24, 2021
4
0
Other than during covid, care homes these days have lots going on. Music, dancing, chair-based exercise, crafts, visiting schoolchildren and entertainers, themed activities around valentines day etc. A far cry from the 1970s when residents just sat around the sides of a big lounge staring at each other.

How many families caring for a PWD have time and energy to provide such activities? Certainly not you after the baby arrives.

Your FIL could have far better quality of life in a modern care home than with a frazzled family struggling to cope. Sometimes you have to recognise that the time has come to take a step back and hand over to the professionals.
 

Fscogirl

Registered User
Jul 20, 2020
13
0
Thank you everyone I really appreciate the understanding :)

Luckily the meeting went well tonight and everyone agreed he should at the very least go into respite around my due date with waiting and seeing how he responds and how the care home assess him......

I think after taking their dad a few times they realise how much work it actually is. Yesterday while getting cleaned after a bowel accident by one of them, he started urinating all over himself and the floor not realising he was doing so........i guess they had to see it and deal with it to understand.

So now just looking for tips on what to look for with a care home........
 

LostInLondon

Registered User
Feb 26, 2021
65
0
He should be in a home and you should be living your life. You have a baby on the way and a toddler and a business. Sorry if it's not what he wanted but he doesn't really get a say. You won't be throwing him in the streets. He will be cared for by people who are trained to care for those with dementia. It's a specialist job and it's only right that he is looked after by specialists. Think about it. If it was you, would you want your family to be suffering and stressed because you were not well? Or would you want them to live their lives? Would you want to be looked after by people who are not trained in this area or would you want to be looked after by specialists? As much as i would want to be at home, I would also want my family to live their lives. I would also want to be taken care of by specialists. I would hate to be a burden (I know you didn't use that word but I am using it). Your social workers are 100% correct. His needs are immense and so let him be looked after by people trained to do so. Not only will he be looked after by trained specialists but he also gets to see his family every week or so too. Bonus! Not only does he get to see his family but every time he gets to see them they are happy and healthy and in a great mood because they are not weighed down by stress.

Do it for everyone involved.
 

lemonbalm

Registered User
May 21, 2018
1,715
0
Thank you everyone I really appreciate the understanding :)

Luckily the meeting went well tonight and everyone agreed he should at the very least go into respite around my due date with waiting and seeing how he responds and how the care home assess him......

I think after taking their dad a few times they realise how much work it actually is. Yesterday while getting cleaned after a bowel accident by one of them, he started urinating all over himself and the floor not realising he was doing so........i guess they had to see it and deal with it to understand.

So now just looking for tips on what to look for with a care home........

That's a start. If you look at the link below and scroll down to the bottom of the first page, there is a section on tips on how to find a care home, what to ask and so on which might be useful.

 

Fscogirl

Registered User
Jul 20, 2020
13
0
Well as of yesterday I have finally gave up. The last few days it was very obvious FIL was "grumpier" and refusing to change his dirty clothes, refusing to wash his hands, pooing more etc. But yesterday he was more unsteady on his feet that usual. Me and my partner tried to explain hes going to have to use his walking aids about as he's going to fall and it resulted in him shouting at me and my partner and my little girl getting upset hearing it all and shouting "No granda!". She's 2 she shouldn't be near any of this :(
This also meant because my OH is at his busiest time of year work wise, that myself and my daughter were stuck inside on a lovely day. Called OHs sister for help, but while sympathic she was "too busy going out a walk with friends".

The final straw was when he was going on about not being allowed to drive anymore and I explained how he nearly reversed into my car the last time he drove and what if it had been his granddaughter there on the drive. His reply was a shrug of the shoulders and "oh well".

I understand its the dementia talking but enough is enough. I called emergency social worker and they have arranged my social worker to call back tomorrow. I have told family and social work I'm not doing it anymore. No washing, cleaning, sitting with him, even sitting in the same room. He has 4 children that dictate their boundaries yet im not allowed mine.

I feel so angry and upset about it all, I really pray social work do something tomorrow because I honestly think I will have to leave my home if not.....

Please someone tell me im not a bad person cause that's all I feel just now 😩
 

Melles Belles

Registered User
Jul 4, 2017
774
0
South east
So sorry that you’re in this terrible situation.
You will have to stand your ground with SS and the family. Why should you be the only one looking after him when you’ve got a small child and you’re heavily pregnant. Maybe contact your GP and/or midwife and tell them exactly how you’re feeling and that you’re not getting any support and that you are close to walking out. No sugar coating otherwise you will be left to carry on.
Sending you virtual hugs.
 

Kaths

Registered User
Mar 2, 2021
18
0
Well as of yesterday I have finally gave up. The last few days it was very obvious FIL was "grumpier" and refusing to change his dirty clothes, refusing to wash his hands, pooing more etc. But yesterday he was more unsteady on his feet that usual. Me and my partner tried to explain hes going to have to use his walking aids about as he's going to fall and it resulted in him shouting at me and my partner and my little girl getting upset hearing it all and shouting "No granda!". She's 2 she shouldn't be near any of this :(
This also meant because my OH is at his busiest time of year work wise, that myself and my daughter were stuck inside on a lovely day. Called OHs sister for help, but while sympathic she was "too busy going out a walk with friends".

The final straw was when he was going on about not being allowed to drive anymore and I explained how he nearly reversed into my car the last time he drove and what if it had been his granddaughter there on the drive. His reply was a shrug of the shoulders and "oh well".

I understand its the dementia talking but enough is enough. I called emergency social worker and they have arranged my social worker to call back tomorrow. I have told family and social work I'm not doing it anymore. No washing, cleaning, sitting with him, even sitting in the same room. He has 4 children that dictate their boundaries yet im not allowed mine.

I feel so angry and upset about it all, I really pray social work do something tomorrow because I honestly think I will have to leave my home if not.....

Please someone tell me im not a bad person cause that's all I feel just now 😩
You're far from a bad person, you've done your best and some. I'm in a very similar situation myself, I care for my Mum I have two brothers and an Aunt who constantly insist that Mum is better off without me yet they have absolutely no clue how to look after my Mum are all far too busy, they've ostracised me from the family actually saying 'I have no family after Mum dies' and I now need to move Mum to a care home because I can't cope with all of their nasty bullying not because my Mum needs one just yet. I can say with absolute certainty you're a wonderful person and thank goodness your FIL has got you! There comes a point, for the good of everyone concerned, the person with dementia needs a care home/respite. There is no softer pillow than a clear conscience so your pillow must be cloud 9. Take care x
 

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