Please help Have you been in a similar situation

LoriAustralia

Registered User
Jul 31, 2014
19
Australia
I am going to my parents tomorrow. I go up and stay overnight every Wednesday. My mum has usually not had a shower and in the same clothes. Her hair is done but its not clean. I worry that she is not showering enough. Last time I was up there I convinced her to get into the shower but she could not regulate the hot water. I told my dad which he was un aware of. Could be the reason she is not getting in there. He said she has baths and I thought maybe cause she can let the water cool off. I worry that my dad is living with a bit of denial. He told me that once a week showers is ok. Is it? She doesn't wear deodorant she never has but it's not nice taking her out for lunch a bit smelly with dirty hair and no bra and such? Am I being selfish? I am worries that dad it to consumed in living as normal as possible with mum that's he's missing the personal bits mum is starting to not be able to do. He lets her do everything for herself which is great but I think she needs more help. She still drives which scares me. I have told them both that she shouldn't they don't listen. He would like her to go on outings with a carer and group but does nothing about it. They have no one come in to help with cleaning which is available. I feel really awful when I go up there and the smell of the house is like old people house and I feel guilty that I can not clean the whole house for them. When I do clean room by room when I come back the next week it is back to the same. Mum has started putting things on the line and hosing them down instead of putting through the laundry. I am sure most things don't ever get washed. I could go on and on. What do I do? Please let me know what you have had to do or chosen to do? Should I start going up there twice a week?
 

Just thinking

Registered User
May 7, 2008
152
North west
I am going to my parents tomorrow. I go up and stay overnight every Wednesday. My mum has usually not had a shower and in the same clothes. Her hair is done but its not clean. I worry that she is not showering enough. Last time I was up there I convinced her to get into the shower but she could not regulate the hot water. I told my dad which he was un aware of. Could be the reason she is not getting in there. He said she has baths and I thought maybe cause she can let the water cool off. I worry that my dad is living with a bit of denial. He told me that once a week showers is ok. Is it? She doesn't wear deodorant she never has but it's not nice taking her out for lunch a bit smelly with dirty hair and no bra and such? Am I being selfish? I am worries that dad it to consumed in living as normal as possible with mum that's he's missing the personal bits mum is starting to not be able to do. He lets her do everything for herself which is great but I think she needs more help. She still drives which scares me. I have told them both that she shouldn't they don't listen. He would like her to go on outings with a carer and group but does nothing about it. They have no one come in to help with cleaning which is available. I feel really awful when I go up there and the smell of the house is like old people house and I feel guilty that I can not clean the whole house for them. When I do clean room by room when I come back the next week it is back to the same. Mum has started putting things on the line and hosing them down instead of putting through the laundry. I am sure most things don't ever get washed. I could go on and on. What do I do? Please let me know what you have had to do or chosen to do? Should I start going up there twice a week?
Hi there, firstly, try not to feel guilty as you are trying to do something when you visit and now you're reaching out on here for advice so that's a positive, caring first step. It does sound like something isn't right with your parents and may I suggest your first port of call is their doctor. Make an appointment and go and express your concerns and the Dr will point you in the right direction. In the meantime just continue with what you're already doing and I'm sure, before long, more help will be available. Good luck!
 

Wolfsgirl

Registered User
Oct 18, 2012
1,028
Nr Heathrow, Mum has AD & VD
Hi I agree, first port of call is the gp. Please try not to blame your Dad it is not his total responsibility - if he could have arranged everything better I am sure he would have and may need support himself to achieve this. I mean this nicely not as a criticism at all. :)

Sounds like you need to work with the gp to get carers in to assist Mum with personal hygiene and cleaners who will check for out of date food, ensure bins taken out etc. Maybe you could make a list with your Dad of jobs that can be done. Is Mum able to peal vegetables if she is given the means to do so? Keep her active and involved is my advice.

Perhaps consider lunch club option (day centre) maybe not needed yet, but where your Dad would also get a little break.

Best wishes x
 

sistermillicent

Registered User
Jan 30, 2009
2,949
Hi, I have been in this position too. I see from your previous posts that your mum has had ad for some time. My parents chose to ignore it as much as they could. Well mum never accepted it anyway. Eventually, when it became much worse, dad did accept that things were bad.
What you say about the hosing clothes, not washing, not knowing how to work normal things like taps is all familiar to me. I am afraid I was unable to intervene as it caused too much upset and so over the years the house became filthy and neglected, the sheets were not changed for over a year at one point, mum smelt dreadful and you know the rest.
I felt quite revolted by it all. Who wouldn't? A saint I suppose.
There was nothing I could do to help, nothing was accepted for ages. I eventually got dad to accept help from carers and respite but only once mum was too far down the AD road to be able to put up effective resistance.
One thing I had to learn was that it is their relationship and they are adults who can decide (your dad can anyway) how they are going to live through this awful time.
I strongly think that by going every week you are doing as much as is possible, you have a long long haul ahead of you so save your strength. You are giving your dad the chance to ask you for help or advice every week so just keep it up. Take what opportunities you can to wash your mum and her clothes but encourage your dad to get a cleaner once a week and forget the house. Stick with the personal stuff.
 

LoriAustralia

Registered User
Jul 31, 2014
19
Australia
Thank you so much

Hi, I have been in this position too. I see from your previous posts that your mum has had ad for some time. My parents chose to ignore it as much as they could. Well mum never accepted it anyway. Eventually, when it became much worse, dad did accept that things were bad.
What you say about the hosing clothes, not washing, not knowing how to work normal things like taps is all familiar to me. I am afraid I was unable to intervene as it caused too much upset and so over the years the house became filthy and neglected, the sheets were not changed for over a year at one point, mum smelt dreadful and you know the rest.
I felt quite revolted by it all. Who wouldn't? A saint I suppose.
There was nothing I could do to help, nothing was accepted for ages. I eventually got dad to accept help from carers and respite but only once mum was too far down the AD road to be able to put up effective resistance.
One thing I had to learn was that it is their relationship and they are adults who can decide (your dad can anyway) how they are going to live through this awful time.
I strongly think that by going every week you are doing as much as is possible, you have a long long haul ahead of you so save your strength. You are giving your dad the chance to ask you for help or advice every week so just keep it up. Take what opportunities you can to wash your mum and her clothes but encourage your dad to get a cleaner once a week and forget the house. Stick with the personal stuff.[/QUOTE
Thankyou so much I really appreciate your reply from the bottom of my heart. I have taken in what you have said. I am scared that it will be the same and the help won't be accepted which I think is where he is at. that he is trying to do all himself cause that's what men do for their family and he doesn't want to burden his child with it. He doesn't understand that I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for them and it's my turn now. You have given me the inspiration to address some concerns with him ( whilst walking on egg shells). My cousin once said too let him be the husband and don't take that away from him. Which you confirmed to me. I think I need to be careful with my approach. Thank you for saying about leaving the house and concentrate in personal it has redirected my thinking and is really addressing my main and most important concerns x
 

LoriAustralia

Registered User
Jul 31, 2014
19
Australia
Thank you

Thank you for your comments I take it all on board and appreciate your time. You have given me food for thought and will try and be strong and approach my main concerns directly with mum and give her the dignity that she deserves. whoa I did never thought that I would be on the internet trying to connect with people living or have lived a similar experience because people I communicate with regularly don't understand and I don't expect them too and most of the time I don't want to burden them with it or get emotional when talking about it. Ouch it hurts bad some times that we are all living this roller coaster of dementia. Changed my perspective and of my daily thoughts that's for sure!
 

LoriAustralia

Registered User
Jul 31, 2014
19
Australia
Thank you again

A very big thank you I concentrated on getting mum in the shower this week and am going to continue and next week start with doing the clothes washing. On track and not feeling so overwhelmed.
 

Sue J

Registered User
Dec 9, 2009
8,035
Hi Lori

Reading about your Mum and water. I often lose the ability to know if something is hot or cold. One day something that is hot will not feel that way the next day. You can get bath thermometers which your Dad may find useful to put in the bath to make sure the temp is OK but it may still possibly feel too hot or cold for your Mum depending how she is that day.

Best wishes
Sue:)
 

LoriAustralia

Registered User
Jul 31, 2014
19
Australia
Hi Lori

Reading about your Mum and water. I often lose the ability to know if something is hot or cold. One day something that is hot will not feel that way the next day. You can get bath thermometers which your Dad may find useful to put in the bath to make sure the temp is OK but it may still possibly feel too hot or cold for your Mum depending how she is that day.

Best wishes
Sue:)
Thank you sue. I didn't think about it in that way. She does has trouble with temperature in normal settings ( in the car, outside) Yes now that I think of it she is always hot and cold on a regular basis. Throughout the day she is forever putting a jacket on then taking it off and I have to constantly adjust the temp in the car when travelling anywhere. Maybe that's a great factor to include when I am with her :D