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Move to care home has made things worse

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
My mother 79 has been on a dementia ward for 10days then on Saturday moved to a care home as her husband , my stepdad can no longer care for her. I have written other posts about how upsetting I am finding this - and I am really trying to accept how things have turned out. I cant help feeling guilty that she has become so very lonely, distressed and even more confused since all these moves. Even as I write know there is no other option....... I can not seem to stop worrying about her and it is making me feel unwell - I feel it is only me who is really worrying such a lot. Siblings seem more acceptant of it, her husband has his own health issues which he must concentrate on..... the weight of it all feels too much.... I was visiting every day in hospital for hours, now I feel so shattered I am dreading the next visit.
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
11,925
0
Yorkshire
Hi @Mudlark
Your feelings are wholly understandable ... you care about your mum and have been caring for her ...it's hard to let yourself let go and allow others to take on the day to day care
what is happening to your mum is down to the dementia, not anything you have done or can do ... sadly, a move to residential care is rarely what everyone wants and is happy about ... it's a kind of least worse option which is necessary

right now, though, your heart hasn't quite caught up with your head ... give yourself some time to rest, recuperate and regroup ..it will do you and your mum no good for you to become ill ... Your mum may not be happy exactly, she is safe though ... you are projecting feelings on to her that she may well not be feeling .. the staff will support her and help her through this, so share that weight with them
 

Violet Jane

Registered User
Aug 23, 2021
785
0
Unfortunately, there don’t seem to be any good options here. I can’t remember all the details of your parents’ situation but I think that you said that your stepfather can no longer care for your mother who has dementia and is resistant to outside care. It seems therefore that your parents can no longer live together in their own home even with the support of carers.

If your stepfather returns home then your mother will have to move out and a care home appears to be the only option unless you are prepared to move her in with you.

Conversely, if your stepfather is thought to now require residential care your mother could in theory return home but from what you have said she cannot live alone. The only options would therefore appear to be:
• to have a live-in carer (I recollect that this was thought not to be a realistic option)
• for you to move in with your mother
• for you to stay with your mother during the day and engage a night carer so that you could return home in the evenings (if your mother is resistant to outside care then she is unlikely to accept this option)

From what I recollect you have said previously residential care for your mother is the only realistic option even if it’s not one that either you or she is happy with. It’s early days in the care home, and perhaps a different one would suit her more. Perhaps time and possibly medication will help her to settle and be less anxious.
 

Frank24

Registered User
Feb 13, 2018
298
0
Someone moving into full time care is a very difficult situation to deal with and caused me no end of anxiety. I’ve had periods of time when I feel like I’ve made the right decision. When my mum seems happy and settled. And as the disease has progressed, my mum loosing the ability to walk and move unaided I’ve been relieved that didn’t happen to her at home as I could not have coped with hoisting her or lifting as I have sustained a serious back injury. But nearly two years on, I still suffer from dreadful anxiety and feeling like there should be another solution. So I think it can be a state of mind that ebbs and flows x all I can say is that you are not alone.
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
4,734
0
Nottinghamshire
@Mudlark, this is really early days both for your mum in the care home and for you as you adjust. There will also be the worry about your step father's health too. I don't think the move to the care home has made things worse, I'm sure the time in hospital didn't help but I wonder if your step father was managing to hide the extent of your mother's decline from you and the rest of the family, making it more of a shock when you spent a lot of time with her.
If possible try not to dwell on it too much. Worrying won't help either you or your mother. I know that is easier said than done, but your mum is now safe in the care home. It might not be the ideal one for her, but I think you need it a few more weeks and then see if she has settled.
 

northumbrian_k

Volunteer Host
Mar 2, 2017
2,243
0
Newcastle
It is hard @Mudlark and takes time to settle into care, during which your thoughts and emotions will be haywire. The level of care needed and the need to keep your mother safe suggest that a care home is the best solution. It is too early to say whether this has made the situation worse. My wife went through a difficult time but is now more content in her care home than I would have believed possible. There are no certainties but I hope that, given time, your mother will engage and accept her situation. That is what you need too.
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
Hi @Mudlark
Your feelings are wholly understandable ... you care about your mum and have been caring for her ...it's hard to let yourself let go and allow others to take on the day to day care
what is happening to your mum is down to the dementia, not anything you have done or can do ... sadly, a move to residential care is rarely what everyone wants and is happy about ... it's a kind of least worse option which is necessary

right now, though, your heart hasn't quite caught up with your head ... give yourself some time to rest, recuperate and regroup ..it will do you and your mum no good for you to become ill ... Your mum may not be happy exactly, she is safe though ... you are projecting feelings on to her that she may well not be feeling .. the staff will support her and help her through this, so share that weight with them
Thank you Shedrech, you right my heart is trying to rule my head - and yes she is safe - that is one thing I can know.
 

purpledaffodil

Registered User
Dec 16, 2021
21
0
Dearest @Mudlark

None of this is your fault. You have done amazingly to support your mother. You’ve spent long hours with her every day in the hospital. You’ve got her somewhere safe where she will be looked after and that you can visit, with almost no notice. You’ve been amazing.

Yes the guilt is awful. I described the day I moved my Mum to her first care home as the worst day of my life. At the same time I know we did the right thing. It’s so hard. But I’m saying this to let you know that how you are feeling is normal.

It is also NOT YOUR FAULT SHE HAS DECLINED. The moves, the new places, a stay in hospital. This will all, sadly, have knocked her. Now she needs time to get to know the new place, the staff, the other residents. They need time to get to know her too. I know it is so so hard but try be patient with yourself and with them. You don’t need to visit every day. You will feel like you do, but you don’t.

I agree with others to give you and her and the home a bit of time. If she doesn’t settle and you’re not happy in a few weeks, you can start looking at other places. While it’s not great to move again, I’d honestly say better to move than to stick with a home that isn’t right. (We had to move my Mum. The new home suits her so much better).

Things will get better.

Sending virtual hugs

PD
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
Unfortunately, there don’t seem to be any good options here. I can’t remember all the details of your parents’ situation but I think that you said that your stepfather can no longer care for your mother who has dementia and is resistant to outside care. It seems therefore that your parents can no longer live together in their own home even with the support of carers.

If your stepfather returns home then your mother will have to move out and a care home appears to be the only option unless you are prepared to move her in with you.

Conversely, if your stepfather is thought to now require residential care your mother could in theory return home but from what you have said she cannot live alone. The only options would therefore appear to be:
• to have a live-in carer (I recollect that this was thought not to be a realistic option)
• for you to move in with your mother
• for you to stay with your mother during the day and engage a night carer so that you could return home in the evenings (if your mother is resistant to outside care then she is unlikely to accept this option)

From what I recollect you have said previously residential care for your mother is the only realistic option even if it’s not one that either you or she is happy with. It’s early days in the care home, and perhaps a different one would suit her more. Perhaps time and possibly medication will help her to settle and be less anxious.
You are right that a care home is the only option, and it is helpful to see it laid out like that. I think my problem is with the care home itself, too big, too empty, too posh. It isn't really set up for dementia I feel
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
Dearest @Mudlark

None of this is your fault. You have done amazingly to support your mother. You’ve spent long hours with her every day in the hospital. You’ve got her somewhere safe where she will be looked after and that you can visit, with almost no notice. You’ve been amazing.

Yes the guilt is awful. I described the day I moved my Mum to her first care home as the worst day of my life. At the same time I know we did the right thing. It’s so hard. But I’m saying this to let you know that how you are feeling is normal.

It is also NOT YOUR FAULT SHE HAS DECLINED. The moves, the new places, a stay in hospital. This will all, sadly, have knocked her. Now she needs time to get to know the new place, the staff, the other residents. They need time to get to know her too. I know it is so so hard but try be patient with yourself and with them. You don’t need to visit every day. You will feel like you do, but you don’t.

I agree with others to give you and her and the home a bit of time. If she doesn’t settle and you’re not happy in a few weeks, you can start looking at other places. While it’s not great to move again, I’d honestly say better to move than to stick with a home that isn’t right. (We had to move my Mum. The new home suits her so much better).

Things will get better.

Sending virtual hugs

PD
Thank you @purpledaffodil for your kind words. It is useful to know that you moved your mum and she was happier. I honestly feel, as does my stepdad , that this home is not right for her, It's brand new, very posh, and the dementia 'floor' is not yet open so she has a room with on a floor that is like a hotel with non dementia residents - she is all at sea and has no clue what is going on. But I will try and take a breath and accept there is nothing I can do for a few days at least!
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
@Mudlark, this is really early days both for your mum in the care home and for you as you adjust. There will also be the worry about your step father's health too. I don't think the move to the care home has made things worse, I'm sure the time in hospital didn't help but I wonder if your step father was managing to hide the extent of your mother's decline from you and the rest of the family, making it more of a shock when you spent a lot of time with her.
If possible try not to dwell on it too much. Worrying won't help either you or your mother. I know that is easier said than done, but your mum is now safe in the care home. It might not be the ideal one for her, but I think you need it a few more weeks and then see if she has settled.
Thank you Sarasa, I do worry too much and you are right it helps no one!
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,975
0
65
London
You are right that a care home is the only option, and it is helpful to see it laid out like that. I think my problem is with the care home itself, too big, too empty, too posh. It isn't really set up for dementia I feel
You might want to give it time. This care home will certainly be trying to full its rooms as it won't be economic to run it with lots of vacancies so they will probably get less empty gradually.Does your mother feel uncomfortable about it being too posh? That might not be an issue for her.
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
You might want to give it time. This care home will certainly be trying to full its rooms as it won't be economic to run it with lots of vacancies so they will probably get less empty gradually.Does your mother feel uncomfortable about it being too posh? That might not be an issue for her.
She says she feels 'unconnected' and 'lost' she looks both as she wanders around it. I am not sure she has noticed it is posh, just big and empty. We had no choice but to place here there or the hospital would have discharged her to one away.
 

Banjomansmate

Registered User
Jan 13, 2019
4,001
0
Dorset
Your Mum is probably going to be feeling “unconnected and lost” wherever she is, as everything is new and strange for her. Given time she will hopefully learn her way around and recognise the staff members and other residents. The Banjoman could get ‘lost’ in his one bedroom flat so any new place of residence is going to confuse her.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
18,183
0
South coast
As I said on your other thread, so much has happened to your mum recently that she is bound to be disorientated. I agree with @Sarasa too = your dad was probably covering up a lot of your mums problems. He probably became your mums "comfort blanket" and now without him she is feeling lost and you are seeing the true extent of her problems.

I recognise the sort of care home you are describing - I looked at ones like that when I was looking at care homes for my mum. I decided that they wouldnt suit mum either. I suspect that it is made worse because your mum is not in a dementia unit where there are more, and better trained, staff. The place mum ended up in was an older building converted into a secure dementia home. It was a bit scruffy and old fashioned, but it was clean and the fact that it was a converted building gave it a homely feel. Go and look at other homes, but dont make a knee-jerk decision - you have time to let things settle.
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
4,734
0
Nottinghamshire
Having visited various care homes in August last year when we were moving my mother nearer to where we now live and my mother in law into care, I realised what suits one person won't suit another. We looked at two homes in our town with my mum in mind. One was very similar to the home she was in in London, new build, long corridors various rooms for activities, hair salon etc. The other was based in an old Georgian house and its stables with a few modern bits to connect it all. My husband and I really like the old one. It had fewer residents and the rooms were all different and a bit quirky. It also had a great atmosphere and a wonderful garden, with the opportunity to do gardening in some raised beds. The old one would have been just right for my mother in law who was then living in an old cottage and who loved gardening but useless for my mum who likes modern buildings and has never liked either gardens or gardening. It also had an unsecured staircase that I knew my mum would have been up and fallen down in no time. In the end that home was too far from my husband's siblings, so they went for one nearer where she was living. Again an old cottage type building with very few residents. I'm not sure mother in law has noticed she has moved as they worked hard to ensure that her room was set up the same way as her one at home.
Now your mum is safe I think it is worth looking round to see if you can find something she'll feel more comfortable in. However she is probably never going to be completely happy as that is the nature of dementia. She may also start to settle where she is as she becomes more familiar with it and with the carers.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
3,096
0
High Peak
As the place is currently so empty, it's possible they don't have many staff at the moment either, which might mean such things as 'activities' are not happening.

But due to this situation (which is understandable) I'd want to know what efforts they are making to settle your mum in. She needs some one-to-one time each day with one of the carers. My mum would never join in anything so it made no difference what was going on in her home. However, mum would go to the office and chat to the admin lady who would give her little 'jobs' to distract her. Mum often tried to escape and would sit by the door in reception awaiting her chance, but the admin lady gave her a clipboard and pen and asked her to keep a note of everyone who entered and left. Mum loved that! Also, the activities lady would come and sit with mum in her room and paint her nails or ask her to help taking some books round to others. All these things helped.

So I'd say certainly give it a few weeks but judge the home on their efforts to make your mum comfortable.
 

Mudlark

Registered User
Jan 13, 2020
71
0
As the place is currently so empty, it's possible they don't have many staff at the moment either, which might mean such things as 'activities' are not happening.

But due to this situation (which is understandable) I'd want to know what efforts they are making to settle your mum in. She needs some one-to-one time each day with one of the carers. My mum would never join in anything so it made no difference what was going on in her home. However, mum would go to the office and chat to the admin lady who would give her little 'jobs' to distract her. Mum often tried to escape and would sit by the door in reception awaiting her chance, but the admin lady gave her a clipboard and pen and asked her to keep a note of everyone who entered and left. Mum loved that! Also, the activities lady would come and sit with mum in her room and paint her nails or ask her to help taking some books round to others. All these things helped.

So I'd say certainly give it a few weeks but judge the home on their efforts to make your mum comfortable.
I love the image of your mum with a clip board - wonderful idea!