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Reluctant move to care home


Registered User
Nov 21, 2015
My Grandad has reached a stage when he no longer reliably recognises his house as home. A few times now he has woken up, decided he needs to go 'home' and started walking. He has been picked up by the police and taken to casualty, who contact my mum. She has worked really hard to enable him to stay in his own home (he lives alone) - she does his shopping, admin, and as much washing/cleaning as he will let her do. No assistive technology has worked for him.
After his last visit to casualty she was clear that he can no longer live alone and so a care home is the only other option. He was unexpectedly in agreement with this, and said that he had been trying to 'keep going' for some time. My aunt has links with a good home through work, and fortunately they would have a bed from the beginning of the next week, so my Mum took my Grandad to stay with her in the meantime. This home has always been the eventual plan if needed.
He has been at my aunt's house for 2 days and has veered between refusing to admit he has any problems, aggressive behaviour, shouting and packing his bags, to saying he likes having his dinner cooked for him and being quite content. As a result my mum and aunt have been worried that they will have to let him go home again.
He has been assessed as lacking capacity and they have power of attorney, so legally can insist that he go into a home for his own safety. Would appreciate any experience and advice regarding this situation - would you explain beforehand or when there,tell the truth or not?
Thank you!


Volunteer Moderator
Feb 27, 2015
Welcome to TP :)

He's in unfamiliar surroundings at your aunt's. When he moves into the home it will take him a while to settle as its a big change.
Good luck.


Registered User
Jan 30, 2009
Unfortunately even if he went back to his house he would probably not recognise it as home. He was already trying to go home from there, which I think would be meaning a place where he feels safe and comfortable (as he may well have done in his childhood home?)
He will feel safe and comfortable in a good care home once he is settled in.


Registered User
Dec 8, 2011
North West
Yes, it may be that there was no alternative, but the move to your aunt's house was always likely to be a complication. Hopefully, he will settle done once the move to the CH is completed. It certainly doesn't sound as though a return to his own home would really make sense or be in anyone's best interest at this point.


Registered User
Nov 21, 2015
Thank you for your replies. Practically, would one wait until the person was calm and just take them to the home, or explain beforehand where you were going, knowing there would be resistance? I feel there is a point when their safety takes precedence over telling the truth?


Registered User
Aug 29, 2007
SW London
We didn't even discuss it with my mother - she would never have agreed to go so there was no point. But she was very bad by then, zero short term memory and unable even to make herself a cup of tea.
We took her 'out for lunch' - the CH had said to arrive for lunchtime, and this worked well. We took some of her things, surreptitiously packed the night before, and took the rest over later. Although it would have been obvious to anyone else that we were having our very nice lunch in a CH dining room, she honestly thought it was a restaurant.

If you think he is likely to be difficult, or to refuse to go, and there is no alternative to the CH, then personally I would not feel at all bad about 'love lies'. I would ask the staff in advance how to handle it once you are there - they will almost certainly be used to dealing with such situations.


Registered User
Aug 28, 2014
I was in the same situation with my Mum. I always said she would stay at home while she was happy. Once she did not recognise her own home and was scared to go downstairs as she though other people where there.....time to do something else. She ended up in hospital and then went to the care home. We tried a care package with 3 visits a day but she refused to cooperate. She ended up in hospital with chest and urine infections and severe dehydration which was causing her to fall.

Emotionally you dont want to do this, but logically you know he needs 24hr care, especially if he is wandering.

If this was happening to your best friend what would you say to them? Be your own best friend and be kind to yourself. He needs to be safe and cared for. Pick a good place and you will find he might even have friends and a little happiness too.

Keep posting as it helps and we all understand. Love Quilty


Registered User
Apr 8, 2013
We did the same. Told MIL we were going out for tea and took her to the CH. Had bought a few days worth of clothes and named them and also new comb and toiletries packed. Sad but it was for the best.

She had no idea it was a CH but would never have agreed to go if she had worked it out. She's happy now but still doesn't know that she lives there.