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Mum being moved to different home on Mon, expecting bad reaction, advice needed!

Discussion in 'Middle - later stages of dementia' started by ferniegirl, Jul 18, 2015.

  1. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Hi, my mum and dad have been in a lovely care home for four months, ostensibly for my mum to recover from shingles. Mum is 90, dad is 99. Since being there she has been diagnosed with a form of Alzheimer's and is deteriorating quite quickly. She has hated being in the home (my dad loves it as he gets well fed and feels very safe), is not happy with anything from the staff to the view (both of which are lovely) and has now started to get aggressive, banging her hands on the windows, shouting at my dad, saying that she is being kept there against her will and wandering off. As it is not a dementia home, she is having to be moved, something my siblings and I knew would eventually come. We have found somewhere and she is due to be moved there on Monday. My dad knows and I think is quite relieved although he may change his mind in a few weeks when he has been without her a while.

    We are all extremely anxious about the actual process. What do we say to her? She will be devastated about being parted from dad who has said that even if the new home has a place in the "normal" bit, he doesn't want to go with her. I was thinking of saying that as she obviously was not happy where she was, we had found her somewhere that we thought she would like better and that dad would be following shortly. I hate lying but if she thinks she is being taken from dad she will never get in the car. What do we do if she gets hysterical and refuses? How do you move people when they are like that?

    It is such a horrible situation for us and for her and I am dreading Monday. Any advice would be most appreciated. Thank you.
     
  2. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,026
    Yorkshire
    So difficult, isn't it.
    I would say tell 'love lies' - other members of my family see no reason to lie in any situation - me, I see no reason to tell the brutal truth to someone who can't process it and who will only be upset by it; it's my responsibility to shoulder all that now.
    And - in your situation, your father's wishes and feelings must be respected too.

    I wouldn't say anything beforehand, why raise any resistance if you don't have to? Will she leave the home with you happily? If so on the day just say you are going on an outing - something she will want to do - and either have father come too or have a reason he has to follow on or not come (if he won't cope have him distracted with some activity elsewhere) - maybe a girlie day?
    Have the new home prepared to welcome her in the way you know will be best (make a fuss or ignore her etc whatever she will react to best)- maybe sit in the lounge for a coffee, walk in the garden ... keep her from the room initially, maybe even until all her things have been moved.
    Quite honestly, don't be afraid to leave her to the staff - maybe no fond farewells at all.
    Let's face it however you do this it will be an awful day - I suspect you already have an inkling of what you need to do, give yourself permission to do whatever is necessary in the short term for the welfare of your mother, and your father AND your self and siblings in the long term.

    All of this is just my way of thinking - totally ignore if not helpful.

    All the best to you all.
     
  3. Badger15

    Badger15 Registered User

    Jul 18, 2015
    1
    Moving mum

    Hello- try using the respite care option. Tell mum she is having respite care in new home to try it out, a bit of a holiday. Then that 'respite' time can continue indefinitely. Check with dad whether he wants to visit her in new setting, but leave his visits for a couple of weeks to give her time to settle. I moved my mum into care 4 years ago today so can empathise- give yourself time to grieve too as your parents will not be together and that is a very strange feeling xx
     
  4. Patricia Alice

    Patricia Alice Registered User

    Mar 2, 2015
    179
    My mum is exactly the same. She lives with her sister in a residential dementia home but recently she has been saying she is being poisoned, refusing meds and banging on the windows, she wants the police as she thinks she is in jail. To cut a long story short the home served us with 28 days notice which means she will be separating from her sister. Mom now needs a higher category, nursing dementia, we have found a home 5 mins from our homes and thankfully social services have finally agreed to fund.

    The problem we have is the separation, mom will pine, her sister will pine. My mom is frightened of the dark (stems back to childhood and the blackout in the war), they share a room where they are now. We are in turmoil at how it will turn out and how we put it into practice.

    The new home looks like a modern hospital and the staff wear 'uniforms' so we have decided to tell a little white lie and say she is going into hospital for a few weeks whilst they sort out her meds and as she has no memory of time, just keep saying it.

    It is very difficult. I feel for you. We don't like lying but sometimes you have to tell them what they want to hear.

    I wish you well
     
  5. JoshuaTree

    JoshuaTree Registered User

    Jan 2, 2010
    496
    Surrey
    #5 JoshuaTree, Jul 18, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2015
    Hi there,

    Although it's just my mum in a care home, I have moved her three times.
    I am sorry to say that whatever you say or do, it won't be be easy.

    How you approach it is down to how aware your mother is. If she is communicating but very muddled, she could react angrily once she realises where you have taken her and this will usually be because she is frightened.

    Is there anyone from the new care home who could go and pick her up for you whilst you wait at the new home for her arrival? I only ask this as I wanted to be the one to take Mum as I felt she needed my familiar face during what might be a confusing time despite help being offered to transport her by her new home. I thought it was the right thing to do.

    What we don't always realise with Dementia is that eventually as the person worsens, they may start to forget who we are but will always respond to us with feelings and emotions they associate with us. My point is, when I personally moved mum, she understandably was upset, angry and blamed me. For at least a year after that she would associate seeing me with those feelings and would often scowl and give me that look you get off your Mum as a kid when you knew you were in trouble.
    In hindsight, had I not been the one to take her, her last years of being more aware of who I was would have been happier. She is beyond that now even those feelings have been forgotten, but it didn't help at the time

    I know you also have the added situation of her asking where your dad is, and I hope someone will be able to offer a bit more advice on that than I can.

    However you decide to handle the move and whatever you decide to say to your Mum I wish you the very best.
     
  6. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Thank you...

    for all of your replies which have all been very helpful and given me food for thought. I do like the 'respite home idea' and the 'hospital to sort out meds' idea. If we told her we were going on an outing I think she would gladly come but then when we get to the new home what would I say? "We are popping in for a cup of tea in this nice building", hand her over to staff and leave? I do believe this is the option that would get her into the car in the first place whereas the others, she might refuse. I am trying to prepare myself for being blamed and for the withering 'look' that my siblings and I know so well (or worse).

    I will let you know how it goes tomorrow - thank you all again.
     
  7. Maymab

    Maymab Registered User

    Oct 8, 2013
    216
    Staffs
    Moving to another home


    My husband moved to another Care Home a couple of weeks ago. I was worried sick about it (couldn't sleep, missed 2 appointments!) but in the event it all went very smoothly. My advice would be to say as little as possible and try to distract if necessary.Also try to appear calm as she may well pick up on any tension.
    Hope everything goes well. Will be thinking about you.
     
  8. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Thank you, that is good advice. I will indeed try to stay calm outwardly no matter how difficult she gets but as you say, she may be not too bad .So glad that your husband's move went well.
     
  9. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    The deed has been done..

    and yes it was horrible. We decided the best policy would be not to say much so said to mum that we were going for a drive and a cup of tea. She said she didn't want to but we managed eventually to coax her into the car. We had a half hour drive with me in the back holding her hand whilst she was saying strange things; I distracted her by talking about their past holidays and nice memories which seemed to work. We got to the dementia home which of course had big signs up everywhere which she was looking at. I could feel her getting suspicious and agitated. A nice lady came out and we held her hands and took her inside. Once near the dementia part I said I just needed to go to the loo and left. I felt like I was betraying her. We then went back to the other home where my dad is and he was bemused and upset and said he wanted to be with mum. They do have a room at the new home but mum would be in the dementia bit and dad would be in the other part and she has been bullying him so it is hard to know what to do for the best. We are going to see how it goes over the next few weeks.

    So, big glass of wine and early night for me. I feel so, so sad that it has come to this and I have to say my mum looked really awful and ill today so it wouldn't surprise me if she didn't last long. She will hate it in there. Thanks again for all your replies, they really helped.
     
  10. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,531
    Female
    South coast
    Sending you huge ((((hugs))) FG. You have not betrayed her - you have done what was necessary for her best care. There is no way it was ever going to be easy, so I think you coped really well under the circumstances.
    Leave it several days before you visit your mum to try and get her settled, she will probably be very confused for a while and seeing you might set her off.
    I do hope that she she gets settled quickly and her new home can cater for her needs. You may find that in time she becomes happy there - my mum has in her CH.
     
  11. Patricia Alice

    Patricia Alice Registered User

    Mar 2, 2015
    179
    Oh my, it is our turn next Tuesday 28th and I am dreading it.

    I have not had a decent nights sleep in the last few weeks worrying over the pending move.

    I am glad it went OK for you. We also worry that mom will go down hill fast once the move has taken place.

    Take care x and I hope things improve for you. x
     
  12. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Thank you Patricia. I feel so relieved it is over and I think you will too after next Tuesday but then we have the worry of how they actually are once they are in there. I will be thinking of you next week. Let us know how it goes.
     
  13. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Thank you for your kind words Canary :)
     
  14. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,026
    Yorkshire
    Tough, so tough - but done now, Ferniegirl.
    I'm glad you found a way through the day and hope you got some sleep.
    You know your mum will be taken care of so give yourself and your dad some time to recoup. (I know, so much easier for me to write than for you to do).
    And no guilt! You are a smashing daughter doing her very best for both your parents.

    Patricia Alice - fingers crossed for your day, too.

    Both your mothers may surprise you - expect the worst, hope for the best - usually turns out somewhere inbetween.
     
  15. Patricia Alice

    Patricia Alice Registered User

    Mar 2, 2015
    179
    Terrible day. I am heartbroken. She is so sad and begged us to take her home with us.

    I pray things get better.
     
  16. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,026
    Yorkshire
    So sorry Patricia Alice - not easy for anyone but necessary, sadly.
    Don't be hard on yourself, you are doing the best you can for her,
    Be ready to distract or even ignore the pleas, the carers will find ways to help her through.
    None of us want to have a loved one distressed but any change for anyone has its pros and cons and takes time to work through.
    I've no easy answers
    but thinking of you both
     
  17. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Oh I know how you feel, it is such a terrible day. I felt quite ill for a few days after and still feel rather low. My mum is actually settling down according to the home, been there 10 days now. She is getting a lot more attention and is participating in a few things which I can't quite believe. I am seeing her Saturday so I don't know if she will get unsettled and agitated when she sees me.

    It will take you a little time to get over the distress of today so be kind to yourself. You have done the right thing but it feels so cruel and yet it is the best thing for our mums, they need specialist care now. Thinking of you and sending you a hug x
     
  18. Tiggs99

    Tiggs99 Registered User

    Aug 1, 2015
    2
    I do feel for you, having moved my own mum just over a week ago into a dementia home. We used the respite option and that worked well enough to get her there although she did kick off terribly when we left - we were advised to go and let the staff deal with mum. They came and found us half an hour later to let us know she was ok, calmed down and serving tea to people.
    I don't look at using white lies as truly lying to them, it can avoid unnecessary upset and distress. Unfortunately dementia sufferers have lost their logic and the ability to reason, so what makes perfect sense to us doesn't work. My lovely mum no longer knows what is best for her so my brother and I have to do the best we can for her, bearing in mind our mum we knew so well. As a friend said to me whose own mother is further down the alzheimers road than ours, you have to understand that any upset and distress your mum feels is transitory, and she will feel safe and settled again long before you will.
    A lot of the advice already posted sounds great, I will bear it in mind for my future visits to mum too. I can only say the staff at the dementia home will be well aware of what could happen and will be ready to step in and help, as well as support you. The staff at mum's home were invaluable last week and again on Saturday when I visited for the first time (much more successfully than I had anticipated). I was also advised to say I was just popping out to the car for something if the visit wasn't going well and the staff would take over. I didn't have to use that this time but I'm pretty sure I will have to in the future. The going in for a cup of tea or to use the loo idea for getting mum into the home was mooted too. All good strategies for today or the future. I wish you and your mum the best of luck.
     
  19. ferniegirl

    ferniegirl Registered User

    May 10, 2015
    54
    Surrey, UK
    Hi Tiggs and thank you for your reply. What your friend said about their distress being transitory has helped me to put it into a better perspective, thank you.
     

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