Moving from home to nursing home

Discussion in 'Middle - later stages of dementia' started by Girlonthehill, Mar 26, 2015.

  1. Girlonthehill

    Girlonthehill Registered User

    Jan 1, 2015
    Over the last few days it has become obvious from various things that have happened that mum can no longer stay at home. Dad can't cope any more and his health is at risk. My question do you get a person into a care home ? I mean physically. We wil be self funding, I have chosen a home, on a waiting list for a room but how do I get mum to agree to it. She won't ! Do I lie and tell her it's just for a couple of days. Do,I take her to have a look? What happens when the home send their staff member to assess her? What do I tell her? Mum has Lewy Body and the aggression that goes with it. We have been surviving on keeping her in a good state by dancing around her. Poor dad gets the brunt of the aggression. I am there every day but work so can't be there all the time. As I have read before as we are self funding SS do not want to know.
    I have got my head stuck on the logistics of actually moving her, can't even think past that yet.
    Does anyone have any comments / suggestions after moving a loved one into a home?
  2. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    SW London
    This is so difficult - I do sympathise. I can only say that my mother was the same. Although she was very bad by then and 24/7 care had become an urgent necessity, she would never have agreed to go, so we didn't discuss it with her at all. We took her 'out for lunch' and even that was a cause for concern since for a long time she had been very reluctant to leave the house at all. Her GP helped by prescribing Valium to make her 'easier' on the day.

    Some people 'blame it on the doctor' - it's just until she's a bit better/stronger, or while they sort her meds out, or any other plausible thing you can think of. There is no need to tell the person it's for ever. If their short term memory is already very bad you can often recycle the same fib over and over, since they will not remember that you said much the same before.

    I won't pretend it was easy with my mother. We were all absolutely dreading the day and although actually getting her there did turn out to be problem-free - she actually thought it was a restaurant and offered to pay for us all - you can imagine how we felt - but this was an indication to us of how bad she was by then. Although there is no big CARE HOME sign outside we had expected that it would be pretty much instantly obvious where we had taken her, and that it would prove impossible to get her in the door, let alone upstairs and enjoying an admittedly very nice lunch in the homely dining room.

    Good luck - I do feel for you and hope you find a way that is not too hard all round. All too often with this beastly disease there are no easy answers.
  3. jaymor

    jaymor Volunteer Moderator

    Jul 14, 2006
    A few weeks in a convalecent home for a test and recuperation might be accepted as older people will remember this as a very common thing after someone had been ill. A few weeks away free might go down well. As time passes you can blame the doctors for a longer stay.

    Another suggestion that has come up on here is major work needed on the house so best to move into a hotel for the duration of the work. Again blame the builder for delaying the return home.

    It is difficult, especially if your Mum is still understanding what is going on.

    I hope it works out for you without too much stress on your Mum, dad and yourself.
  4. betsie

    betsie Registered User

    Jun 11, 2012
    When my dad went from home to the carehome his memory was so poor he didn't really realise what was going on. I just said we were going out.
    When we got there I put his stuff in the room and they settled him into the lounge area. When I left I just said I was popping out and would be back soon. The next day when I visited he just said " there you are I was looking for you".

    I will say I still look back on this day as being one of the hardest things I have ever done. I had to wear dark sunglasses as I cried all the way there as I drove the car. I have never felt so guilty and when I left it felt like I was abandoning him. At the time we had no choice and my mums health was suffering but I think most people feel terrible guilt when they have to put a loved one into a home.
    Sorry that probably doesn't help but be prepared for how hard you will find it. Depending on how your mums memory is of her home and surroundings she may find the transition easier than you think.
    If she is still aware, could you tell her she is going on a little holiday while the house is being decorated or something like that? From seeing new people who arrived at dads care home the first two weeks seemed to be the worst, but after that they all seemed to settle very well.
    Good luck, if you have found a nice home you are happy with you will find the move much easier. It is also a relief to know they are safe and being cared for 24/7. Hopefully then your dad will be able to enjoy his visits with her after having all the sleep he needs and time to take care of himself.
  5. chrisdee

    chrisdee Registered User

    Nov 23, 2014
    Yes, I have been there too. Some sort of tranquiliser, and a fib 'love lies' as they say.
    It may not be too bad if she likes car trips. We went out for a 'cup of tea'. In our case a brilliant cpn [mental health] came with me. No one with dementia I have ever come across will vote for a care home for themselves. You have to do it for them, you are acting in their best interests, and I do think the vast majority of people do settle. You are taking most of her worries away and well done on making the decision. It may go better than you think.
  6. pippop1

    pippop1 Registered User

    Apr 8, 2013
    We said that we'd arranged for her house to be decorated and the Dr thought that the smell of paint would be bad for her to sleep with. We only said this after we were in the CH. To get her there in the first place we said we were going out for tea. She always hated to go out so this was more difficult than you might imagine.

    When we arrived (10 mins later) we left her case in the car and took it in when we left her. Everything she said on the day was poignant but as we went into the lounge she said, "Oh this place looks so homely".

    It was the right decision and a great place.

    It was all really sad.
  7. Girlonthehill

    Girlonthehill Registered User

    Jan 1, 2015

    Thanks everyone for your advice and care. We are now on a waiting list at 2 homes. Both had vacancies on Monday all gone now! I can't believe how quick you have to move! Our second choice had 2 rooms at 10am by the time I got there at 3 gone!

    Another step in the great game of life.
  8. Blackfield

    Blackfield Registered User

    Mar 8, 2015
    we are at exactly the same stage with my dad. If we do not move him into a home soon, my mum will be in hospital from the stress. He is going into respite so we can all take a step back and think rationally about what to do next. We won't mention it to him until we are at the home, by the time he realises where we are I'm hoping the experience of the staff will help me with the next stage.

    in many ways it's much harder to put dad in a home when mum is doing such a wonderful job of looking after him, however, it's killing her in the process, and she has now thankfully recognised this fact.
  9. Registered User

    Jan 16, 2014
    #9, Mar 30, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2015
    The circumstances you have described were exactly the same for us with dad,he would not have understood going to the care home and certainly refused so we couldn't discuss it at all, the guilt of lying in order to get him to the care home, leaving him there telling him we were popping to the kitchen to get lunch and the memory of that first day crying all the way back home in my car will never leave me. But - we knew it had to be done for dad's best interests, safety and welfare. It took him a good 3 months to settle to a degree and now 9 months on I still visit every other day but still don't feel able to say after each visit I'm going, he would still want to come, so like a lot of other TP,ers the love lies continue because it is kinder to dad in his limited understanding and decline. As others will have described this is one of the hardest things to do on a dreadful dementia path. Recently trying to keep dad contained on a hospital ward for 10 days pre and post op (I stayed the whole time) with his challenging dementia behaviour because he didn't understand and was frightened with the simplest of medical procedure came a very close second mind you! Good luck, you will find a way, it will be upsetting but in your heart you know you have reached this stage because you care deeply and it is in your parent's best interest.
  10. Hatshepsut

    Hatshepsut Registered User

    Jan 12, 2009
    North Somerset
    Thank you all so much for the honesty, help and advice on this forum. I haven't posted here in years (I'm a long-time lurker) but could do with some advice today.

    My sister and I are taking Mum to a care home today for a trial period, partly to assess whether it will work and partly to give Dad some respite. We are dreading the whole thing, of course. Dad has resisted this inevitable move and, for the past few months, they have had a live-in carer from Monday to Friday, with my siblings and me covering week-ends, but it's not sustainable and even with the increased level of help, we are not able to meet her needs. She is 85 and very spry for her age; she can escape out of windows and has done so on more than one occasion when she has found the door locked.

    Out of the blue, Dad took Mum last week to visit this particular home and he was surprised to like it, although Mum kicked off while they were there and accused him of wanting to get rid of her to get hold of her money (a recurrent theme - she often tells stories that have been remembered from books rather than her life, my favourite being the one where she recounts her visit to the South Pole).

    Although I am confident that she will not remember last week's visit, on some emotional level she may very well remember the feeling she had about the home. We have planned that my sister will drive her there this afternoon using the explanation of coming to meet me for a cup of tea. But after that, we are at a loss. We don't mind lying to her because it's all about causing her the least distress, but we want to get our story straight. Any suggestions?

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