1. sue h

    sue h Registered User

    Jan 2, 2004
    28
    Maidstone, Kent
    Feeling very down today. Dad has at long last been booked in for a weeks respite next Monday. Both Mum and me are putting on a brave face and trying to be strong for each other but we can't help feeling guilty mainly because we can't explain to Dad where he is going. The last few weeks Dad seems to have lost all conversational skills and has no interest in anything, it is like talking to an empty shell which really breaks my heart. Its so sad to see him just sit there blankly.
    Mum isn't allowed to visit him either which is going to be very hard for her.
    Its helped writing it down, at least the tears are flowing.
    Thanks for being there
    Sue
    xx
     
  2. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    824
    Hi Sue,

    This is bound to be hard for both your Mum and you, especially the first time. Personally I wouldn't try to explain where your Dad is going, for his sake, other than to jolly him along on his 'holiday'.

    Like you, I have felt devastated at losing a big part of my Dad but having my Mum around really helps to focus my attention on her happiness too. Does your Dad still like singing (his generation's songs) - or listening to you singing? I feel like I'm communicating with Dad in some way when we sing together. (Although today he informed us, in the middle of a verse of 'Leaning on the Lampost at the corner of the street', that he didn't like those songs :) )

    The guilt will be there, sure, but also a break from the sundowning / lack of sleep etc and a chance to re-charge the batteries and collect thoughts. I hope all goes well.

    Best wishes,
     
  3. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    Hello Sue

    if it helps, the situation you are in is one of the really bad stages of this dementia nightmare. To leave someone, whether it is for respite [I couldn't do that!] or for assessment [we did that three times and it crushed me] or in a care home.... all of these is just awful.

    You just have to tell yourself it is for their good and your own. You can do nothing for them if you trash yourself.

    Just grit your teeth and rant as much as you like on TP! We all know how you feel.
     
  4. Nutty Nan

    Nutty Nan Registered User

    Nov 2, 2003
    787
    Buckinghamshire
    Dear Sue,
    How hard this is for you and your Mum!
    Try and concentrate on the weekend ahead, rather than on Monday: there is always a chance that your Dad's reaction will be positive (or at least not as bad as you fear). You would not have arranged this respite if it wasn't absolutely necessary, so keep your fingers crossed and I hope for you all that it will go well.
    Best wishes!
     
  5. sue h

    sue h Registered User

    Jan 2, 2004
    28
    Maidstone, Kent
    Thanks for your replies. Dad doesn't respond to anything now, even old time songs. We went to our local Alzheimers group tea party last week and he just sat and stared or slept! My Mum enjoyed the entertainment and sang along to the songs which gives her a break and some pleasure in her life. Dads passion was always reading and up to a month or so ago he would love to look at the books when we went shopping even though he couldn't actually read them anymore. Thats now gone, theres absolutely no interest in anything. Eating is becoming quite an issue now, either won't eat at all, picks at his food or tells Mum its a load of rubbish!
    I do try and keep positive about next week and keep reassuring Mum that she doesn't need to worry but there's always a feeling that perhaps its going to make things worse. We have been warned that he might come home more confused and difficult than when he went in.
    I'll let you know how we get on.
    Love
    Sue
    xx
     
  6. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    Hello Sue

    I visit Jan almost every day in her care home, and even then, it may take me 15-20 minutes on a good day to bring her back to what I would term our normality now.

    If I miss a day or two, as I did this week, it takes most of a visit - 45 minutes or so.

    But she does respond, and she does seem to appreciate having a visitor.

    Being out of one's recognisable comfort zone will faze any of us, but it is even more so for people whose world is changing around them. Having said that, their world changes regardless of everything else anyway, and you have your Mum and yourself to think about as well.

    I expect he will be more confused, and thus prone to being difficult until he feels safe again, on his return.

    It is all distressing, but one can only do one's best!

    Best wishes
     
  7. angela.robinson

    angela.robinson Registered User

    Dec 27, 2004
    520
    hi sue ,i know how distressing it is leaving a loved one in respite ,they told me the first time not to visit ,i think it was more for my sake ,as thats what respite is about ,Ispent most of the week crying ,it did me no good at all ,so i did visit and i found that better ,though it was upsetting to leave him after each visit .the nexed time ,i had lots of family visit him instead ,then they phoned me after .this was the only way i could cope.you have to find the best way for you ,good luck .ANGELA
     

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