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Shall I say No ???? Or carry on ??


Registered User
Jun 4, 2012

I just do not know what to do. Mum looks forward to our regular trips out of the care home. I give up my days off work to regularly take mum on outings just to get her out of the care home. We go to hairdressers, coffee shops, the museum or library,... anywhere just to give mum some freedom. Mum always asks to go out whenever I visit and enjoys a welcome a change of scene. My partner works in the local pet shop so I sometimes take her in there to cuddle a rabbit or watch the fish and it makes her feel happy.

However, lately she doesn't want to come back into the care home and her memory is so bad that she becomes distressed as each trip becomes confusing for her upon her return as it is like she has erased everything and does not recognise her room, the residents, the carers , her belongings.... and it is like she is there for the first time.

Is it time to say that she cannot goout any more, or am I being cruel by taking her out. When she is out she is like her old self and enjoys and savours every moment, like old times, but am I doing her harm by putting through such emotional confusion upon her return. She would be devastated if I refused her requests for her regular trips out, but, have I reached the time to keep her in?

It just seems so boring for her to be cooped up day in and day out and now she has lost her interest in reading so trips to the local library are a waste of time now and she was a very keen reader before.

Things have got so bad lately that I have fibbed and told her that it is raining outside and too windy to go out so I can just stay in with her and have a cup of tea but the sheer disappointment on her face is tearing me apart and this could be her last Summer, who knows?? We both need some quality time together whilst we still can ?

What shall I do ? Thanks for any replies x


Registered User
Nov 28, 2012
Moved to Leicester
IMHO I think you have to weigh up what lasting benefit is there in taking her out? If she is upset at not going out but distressed when you come back which is the lesser of the two evils. How helpful are the staff when you get back, is there anything they can do to make the transition easier for her? If the answer to the last question is no, then I think you know the answer. In the longer term which is better for you both? If your mum knew how guilty you felt about depriving her of her outings what would she say? If there outings organised by the care home with which you can help instead that would alleviate your guilty feelings.

Many hugs, it's that rock and hard place again xxx


Registered User
May 18, 2014
Going to suggest the same as loveahug, do the care home arrange outings? Do you take her to all those places in the same day? Why don't you downsize it to just one and then suggest you buy a cake or some other treat to have back at the home. Is your mum aware of the amount of hours out? what I mean is one hour the same as four in her mind. What about staying close to the care home a picnic lunch in the gardens.


Registered User
Jan 30, 2009
I don't know what it is with going out and coming back again - I used to have a terrible time with my mum, I would take her out to coffee which she enjoyed and a little wander round the shops and the minute we got back home (to the house she had lived in for forty years) she would turn on me, not allow me in the house, or refuse to come in herself, become violent, extremely confused and upset. No amount of compassionate communication or techniques suggested here would calm her down, and it would go on for hours.
I kept taking her out, hoping that she would be okay on return but it just continued, and in the end I stopped taking her out because I could not cope with the returns home any more. It did not improve when my parents moved house, I tried again, same story.

Anyway, I can only say that it is probably nothing to do with being in a care home, just one of those awful things that happens with dementia. I stopped taking mum out when the time she spent distraught on our return lasted longer than the outing, and also when she suddenly accused me of kidnapping her while we were in a very nice hotel having coffee, and there was a bit of a scene.


Registered User
May 8, 2011
Just thinking maybe its a good time of year to make the change - if you could do alternate times going out and staying in but sitting outside in the garden? Then there is precedent for not going out and if the goings out get less and less it might make that transition easier.
Is there any craft you could do together? My mum is happy to sit companionably doing a bit of weaving if we are not going out anywhere?


Registered User
Nov 23, 2014
Just saying this as I hope it will make you feel better. When Mum was at home I took her out quite a lot, she loved it and was always asking - also asking to go on holiday as a bit obsessed with these. However, as dementia progressed and mental health got involved, visiting cpn said that over the next few months its likely that her world will get smaller and smaller. This was proved true and when she went into care home, as needed 24 hour care, we never dared to take her out again because of the danger of the scenario you describe. One very good carer took her individually for a little walk a couple of times but one could not really expect this to continue. Its very sad I know, just remember the good visits you had, and cut then down to cope with changed circumstances. It happens to everyone at some point as the illness progresses.

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