On holiday in her head

sarahc

Registered User
Apr 4, 2004
33
My mum is in a great home but (as I have explained on TP before) but was very agitated for a long time and wanted to 'go home', packed her belongings up every single night, vehemently demanded to get a taxi etc. to go to her 'home '(steeet address dating from 1930 etc) My father died in June 2004 and she moved into this lovely place the day after his funeral but was very unsettled for a long time (causing rebelliions among other 'clients' encouraging them to 'mutiny !', phoning the police saying she was being kept against her will etc . However, now she seems to think she is on holiday - last time I visited ( 10 days ago) (I go once a month - she is up North , I am in London ) she said to ask 'one of the waitresses' ( ie carers) to ask what time supper would be. Recently, she always asks for early morning calls, a newspaper, room service etc ! In fact my parents did go on quite a lot of holidays in their time which they loved.. Today I rang and said ' hello how are you?' she said she was on holiday in Llandudno (North Wales where she always used to go with her parents) with her mother but would be coming back 'tonight' to her childhood address (from c. 1930) and finished with 'see you later' - ie I am ( as usual, her sister who is 85 - I am 41). I remarked about all this to the carer who said' Yes I keep saying to her "you're not in a hotel love ! " . But I said "well why bother her ? Just reaffirm she is on holiday (even if it is just in her head) - it's easier and makes her happy and contented - before she was agitated and now she is not - if she thinks she is in a hotel - fine !" Play the game there is no point arguing". I think as others on TP have said, basically you just join in ... So should I suggest to the care home staff ( or to this one particular carer) to play along with the 'hotel ' idea - as they seem to be contradicting her and frankly if this ' holiday' makes her happy then , well hey go with it ......
What do you all think ?
xx
 

Norman

Registered User
Oct 9, 2003
4,348
Birmingham Hades
Sarah
don't the staff know that you cannot reason with the unreasonable,confrontation only causes stress and upset.
Does it matter that mum thinks it's a hotel of course not.
My experience (and it's quite a lot now) is to go along with the fantasies it makes for an easier life
Norman
 

barraf

Registered User
Mar 27, 2004
308
Huddersfield
Dear Sarah

Of course you are right. Your mum is happy in her hotel! to try to disillusion her would be cruel. I am surprised the staff at her care home don't realise this, if they don't then by all means ask them to play along.

Explain that you would rather your mum was happy in her illusionary hotel than upset thinking she is in a home.

I am sure they will agree, if only to make life easier for themselves.

Barraf
 

Sheila

Registered User
Oct 23, 2003
2,259
West Sussex
Hi Sarah, My Mum was constantly going/on/just been on holiday too, don't worry too much, she probably thinks the carer is a nutcase! My Mum was always telling us and anyone else that said something different to her belief that they were. She would soon forget any thing said any way. We tried our best not to have any disagreements if we could. Like Norman and Baraff say, what's the point? The saying is, "distract don't react" Try not to worry too much, my Mum once told the night girl, "this place is a right old dump I'm leaving tomorrow" the girl laughed because actually, she was living with us and had a lovely room with all her bits etc. Hey ho!Love She. XX :)
 

Jude

Registered User
Dec 11, 2003
2,287
66
Tully, Qld, Australia
Hi Sarah,

Go with the flow - and ask the Nursing Home staff to do likewise. It sounds like a very pleasant fantasy, so why burst the bubble...?

Jude
 

Jude

Registered User
Dec 11, 2003
2,287
66
Tully, Qld, Australia
Dear Sheila,

Mothers do come out with some gems sometimes.

When my parents first moved into close care, we were invited over to the Nursing Home for a Xmas drink. It was the first time that my parents had actually been in the main part of the building. We arrived and were confronted with about 80 old souls either in wheelchairs or wobbling about on chairs and looking pretty vacant.

My mother took one look and loudly exclaimed 'God, look at all these poor old buggers!' Talk about cringe...........

Jude
 

emscub

Registered User
Dec 5, 2003
124
Bath
Jude,

That so reminds me of when my sister and I took our Nan to the doctors a few years ago, and she said something along the same lines in the waiting room! Very cringeworthy at the time, but you have to look back and laugh don't you.
 
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emscub

Registered User
Dec 5, 2003
124
Bath
Sarah,

What am I like?! I meant to say in my previous post that we had exactly the same problem with my Nan when she went into hospital after having a fall last year. She was convinced she was in a hotel in Blackpool (this is where she grew up - although if she had any real memory of it there's also no way she would have thought it was Blackpool) and that the building outside her window had been put up on the promenade blocking the lovely view. We had lots of comments, also, about the tower ballroom and other things that were supposedly in the building.

There is absolutely no point in arguing or trying to correct your Mum, as her idea is the only thing that will remain in her memory (in my experience). No comments from you or the staff there will change her mind or be remembered, so there is little point in wasting time and energy (to be frank), and upsetting your Mum also.
 
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sarahc

Registered User
Apr 4, 2004
33
Thanks for sharing all your experiences - my mother seems to be having quite a good time in her head all things considered. Not so long ago she said (in a very surprised voice) to my cousin who was visiting her 'Oh, so you're on this cruise as well ? ' . Not bad eh ? Wish I could be on a cruise in my head sometimes .....Sarah x