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residential care home


Registered User
Aug 5, 2014
Kendal Cumbria
We are going to have to make the decision for Dad to go into residential care. There, I said it (or rather wrote it!) It is such a difficult decision. Mum says she feels a failure but she knows she cannot cope any longer. She is struggling and not getting any sleep.
He now has a "helper" (carer) who goes twice a week for a few hours, but Dad doesn't really like it and tries to get out of the house so the doors have to be locked. He would wander off and get hurt. They live on a fell side, with a steep drive on a country lane with a river at the bottom of the drive!! Mum says they should have moved about 5 years ago but they didn't want to and of course it is too late now. However, she will move closer to us at some point.
He would be safer in care, he would have more to do more activities, he does nothing at home feeling cooped up because the doors are locked, making him more anxious and then aggressive. He spends his time pacing from room to room or just sitting in a chair, his speech is unclear and jumbled. Ive told Mum that she has done well to look after him this long. He is 85 in March, she is 83 and walks with sticks! he has Vascular dementia and was diagnosed about 2 and a half years ago.
We are visiting various secure care homes because he will open doors and wander off. But how do we tell him thats where he will be living?
How to we take him? what do we tell him?
Anyone got any ideas?
thank you


Registered User
Jan 30, 2009
I hope you find some places you like, my mum goes for respite to a really lovely place, it is secure because she used to be a wanderer like your dad (we had to keep the doors locked in the end because she would go MILEs and then sit down and refuse to move another step - my parents also lived on a hillside. they moved when mum got worse, better late than never)
Anyway, mum's place is not one of your smart fancy places, but the staff are just lovely and have been the same people for the four years she has been going there, so low staff turn over.

As to telling your dad he is going there, I wouldn't. do you think he would take it in and remember it, because if so it might be worth trying, but if not you would have to upset him constantly with the news and cause him worry and upset about something you were going to do whether he liked it or not.
Having said that, one of my friends told her mum that she was going somewhere she would be properly looked after and cared for and her mum said she was so relieved. So you never know.

The staff at the care home should be able to help you with settling your dad in, if they can't offer advice about how to go about it then they are probably not the right care home for you.


Registered User
Aug 29, 2007
SW London
So much will depend on the individual, but if someone is going to refuse to go to the CH, or is likely to kick off, or worry and fret about it constantly if told in advance, then personally I wouldn't tell them. We had to get my mother to her care home by 'stealth' - it was the only way, since she would never have agreed to go.

My own feeling when it comes to dementia, is that if something has to happen whether the person likes it or not, then the less they are fretted about it in advance, the better. I know it's not ideal, and goes against the grain for most of us, but when someone can no longer understand their own needs, or the needs of those trying to care for them, then IMO it's for the best.


Registered User
Feb 10, 2014
I had to trick my mum in going into a care home and it was traumatic for both of us. But she was incapable of making rational decisions. She settled down after a few months and gradually started to forget her old home .It was such a relief to see her clean, well fed and looking her old attractive self in nice clothes and with her hair washed and set. I know it will be difficult for you to put your parent into a care hope. Hopefully you will find a good one, as I did. Good luck.


Registered User
Jan 14, 2015
My Dad's care home collected him themselves which was marvellous. He was too advanced to really know what was going on anyway.
You and your Mum are doing the right thing and it's important not to see it as a failure. He will be safer and well looked after there. Moving to a care home is an adjustment for everyone (my Dad moved in early December), not least the relatives of the person!
Stick with it.:)


Registered User
Jan 16, 2014
Our experience was similar to mharris we had to trick dad which terrible but the only way we would have got him there. Took a few months for him to start to settle eat properly pace less etc...on another thread someone made a good observation is it that they settle and accept or the illness continues on its decline and they understand their past even less. Who know. Anyway thinking of you it will be hard unavoidable but most probably necessary as we have all found.