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Respite Dilemma - Need your thoughts...

Hair Twiddler

Registered User
Aug 14, 2012
Middle England
I've not been on TP for a while - all getting a bit too much.
However I would like your thoughts and advice today.

Mum lives with us (Alz, heart condition, mobility issues, no EPA active yet (yes - the 'old' EPA not new ones) bad days getting worse, sundowning getting worse, Galantamine appears to be becoming less effective )

Here's my dilemma, Hubby , 2 teenagers & me are planning a 2 week holiday together in July. First time we would have been away together for more than 2 consecutive nights in 4 years.
I am planning to book mum into a local care home that provides respite. She has never visited the home. When we have been away from home previously I have engaged an agency to provide live-in care - great whilst it's only days & we are in England but not a comfortable option as we plan to take the 2 week holiday abroad.

My dilemma -
* Shall I try to plan a test break for mum before the 'big' one?
* if I do this and she hates it - she will remember & will refuse to go again. She is not what you could call an easy-going person even before Az - so this is very likely.
* If I plan a test break mum may very well think that it is for good and boil herself up into a fury. I dread to think of the insults and blind fury I would face.
* If do not go ahead with a test break - is it fair to abandon her to a strange environment for 2 weeks when we do go on holiday?

I am an only child, no carers come in to help with mum. We have no continence issues yet, mum doesn't wander, and can dress herself. She enjoys a bottle of wine every day (no nasty falls to date).

Your thoughts and advice will be gratefully received.

Twiddler x

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
Toronto, Canada
I think you should make it easier on yourself. Don't give her any advance notice, especially since you feel she may work herself up into a frenzy. I moved my mother from hospital to retirement home and two years later from retirement home to nursing home and never told her what I was doing. It wouldn't have helped and would have made me feel absolutely awful. I felt awful enough as it was without adding a blow-up with my mother into the mix.

I must say - the bottle of wine every day may make things difficult in respite. You might want to arrange for her to have wine with her meal(s) but I don't think they'll give her a bottle's worth.

Hair Twiddler

Registered User
Aug 14, 2012
Middle England
Thanks Joanne.

Yes the wine is a difficult one. I am vigilant here at home, it will be too much to expect the same anywhere else. I know that mum will be content with only wine at dinner - when we have busy days and plenty of distraction the wine loses it's appeal - so I am confident that it won't be an issue.
Also, the home is so close that mum's doctor is the home's local GP too and believe me I've made sure that the wine habit is on their notes! I never want to hear "well you never told us that!"
- Thank you once again for your advice.


Registered User
May 21, 2014
Just a thought but could she be fooled with non-alcoholic wine? I have ordered non-alcoholic beer for OH and he never noticed a thing!


Registered User
Jan 29, 2009
A thought on the wine, maybe gradually reduce the alcohol content of what she has?

But it's vital you and your family have breaks and maybe you should be trying for regular short breaks (a weekend..then a long weekend?) ahead of your holiday?

Nice to see you again but sorry you have this dilemma xx