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Scared for the future

Anthoula

Registered User
Apr 22, 2022
40
0
I have read many of the posts on here and I am full of admiration for how you are all coping. I feel guilty for saying this but I am truly petrified of what the future holds for my partner and me. He (aged 78) was diagnosed with Vascular Dementia approximately 2 years ago and, until recently, it has only been his short term memory which has been affected. I have been able to manage this and our lives have continued much as before the diagnosis. He has accompanied me on shopping trips; we`ve been abroad on holiday; he has gone for walks alone without any problems, and I have been able to go out to play golf a couple of times a week. I think that in many ways I have been living in a fools paradise, believing that is as bad as it will get! Now it is apparent his condition is deteriorating as his memory problems are worsening, his bouts of confusion are increasing and there have recently been short bursts of hallucinations. He is adamant that there is nothing wrong with him and even demanded I get him another diagnosis! Although we have told his sister and daughters of the dementia he flatly refuses to allow me to tell anyone else, although I guiltily confess to having shared the fact with a couple of my close friends. I have read how the Dementia will probably develop and I am worried sick as to how I will cope (I am 75 with a couple of health issues). He is quite a large man and I can not begin to think how I will physically be able to wash and dress him, and the thought of him becoming incontinent makes me feel sick. I feel terrible for saying that but it is the truth. Sadly there is no other family member I can call on for support. His sister lives half way round the world and his daughters live a couple of hundred miles away and all have very busy and important jobs. The thought of contending with whatever the Dementia brings, together with the thought of becoming isolated in our home as I eventually find myself unable to leave him alone at all is truly petrifying.
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
67,241
0
71
Dundee
I’m so sorry to read about your situation @Anthoula and can understand how distressing it must be for you.

As your partner’s dementia progressed you will need to consider using professional carers. You shouldn’t have to cope with everything by yourself. It might be useful for you to talk to an Admiral nurse about your situation. This link will give you details -

 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
76,326
0
Kent
Hello @Anthoula

If thoughts of long term care are so overwhelming for you, forget the guilt and make it your business to source long term care to have in place when the need arises.

There is no legal requirement for you to become a full time carer and it`s better to face facts and deal with your feelings, rather than allow the situation to develop to the point where it affects your mental and physical well being.
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
5,031
0
Nottinghamshire
@Anthoula , have you had a carers assessment for you and a needs assessment for your partner? If not it would be worth contacting social services to get that sorted. Having said that SS are very stretched at the moment and if your partner would be self-funding, having assets of over £23,500 it might be worth starting to get some help in now before it is essential. Help at Home is a service run by Age UK. They don't do personal care, but they could help with housework or maybe take your partner out for a walk. Getting him used to having people other than you around is a good idea as in the future you will probably need to have others coming in.
It might also be worth putting your post code into this site and seeing what other help may be available to you locally
Keep posting, there will always be someone around to listen or give suggestions.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
18,875
0
South coast
I think that looking into the future can be overwhelming. When that time arrives, though, quite often we as carers just seem to get on with it and it isnt such a big deal as we expected. There have been lots of things that I never thought for one moment that I could cope with, but I have.

Having said that, thought, I agree that it is best to get help in early. People with dementia, unfortunately, frequently lose insight and do not believe that they have anything wrong with them, so it can be difficult to arrange carers etc. I have found that getting in help (supposedly for me) in the shape of a cleaner got him used to having someone else coming into the home. You can also introduce someone through a befriending service (try Age UK), who would come and chat to them, play cards with them, help them with some activity such as gardening or take them out somewhere. From there it is not such a large step to getting them to accept help with washing, dressing etc once the need arises.