1. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    4,624
    USA
    I think an offer from Cambridge is amazing!!! Well done to Miss JM, with awards for Best Supporting Parents to our own JM and Mister JM, of course. I can appreciate she has a lot to think over, of course.

    You are all very kind about my little cat; thank you. It's the first time I have had to face this as the adult owner of a pet and, well, ugh. The less I dwell on it the better.

    I am sure in her mind, my remaining cat Java is a mighty huntress but she is arthritic and not slender, if you know what I mean. I think the wildlife is in no danger!!
     
  2. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,065
    Female
    Chester
    Amy I've lost a dog and 2 cats. It isn't for everyone but we got more fairly quickly. We had a 'new' one year old rescue collie within 4 weeks of losing our previous collie. 2 of those weeks were on holiday in Turkey. She came from a house with catsc and small children so was a perfect fit. Dau was 3 at the time and missed her best friend so much. Our previous dog had a six month decline with cancer so we had decided before we lost her we'd get another one straight away.

    With the cats we lost one in may and the other in September and got kittens straight away. Might have left it longer but I had 6 weeks of maternity leave left so meant we could settle them in.
     
  3. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    When I lost my darling Chivvy, he was 19, I swore I would never put myself through that pain again :( His sister left us the following year and I promised OH a 'cat free' period, although couldn't guarantee how long that might last. OH came home with Alfie less than a year later and I was more than ready!
     
  4. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    4,624
    USA
    I would be fine with adding another cat to the household straight away but can tell OH is not and I am okay with having an "only cat" for a while. He has lots of reasons such as the other cat won't want a new cat in the house, and maybe we have health issues coming with this cat, and then some less plausible excuses. I'm not going to push it. He had some traumatic experience as a child with losing a dog (he still won't talk about it) and he is a bit low anyway, so no point in pressing the issue and likely upsetting him.

    I need to get to the pet store today for some more food. I can tell that Java is not pleased with the fishy flavour I offered her for lunch! Mind you, it won't do her any harm to skip some calories. She is big boned, yes, but also overweight!!! It was hard with needing to get the little cat to eat as much as possible, to keep the big one out of the extra food. No more second breakfasts now!
     
  5. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    Yes, we have similar problems. Although we feed Sky and Alfie in separate rooms, I have to make sure she hasn't left anything for him to hoover up. At nearly 6kg, the vet says he could do to loose 400-500g (he's a big boy!).
     
  6. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    6,951
    Suffolk
    I’ve only had one dog at a time, so no problems there. OH and I have had 2 dogs, the first a beagle called Pups ( don’t ask, but how to feel silly calling to an obviously old dog ‘ Here, Pups!’) and a show reject Springer Spaniel called Jasper. The first died of complications after 5 years of diabetes, the second had cancer. That was around the start of OHs dementia and my arthritis, so I decided another dog was not on the cards.

    JM, that’s going to be an interesting decision, hows it going?

    I had to go and see a doc yesterday cos I started feeling sick ( and sleepy). He thought the nausea might be the codeine, it’s a side effect, but I’ve been taking it for years as and when needed, and I certainly haven’t overdosed. Still got the headache, though. It might last for a month, according to one gp, or a fortnight, according to a leaflet I was given. At the moment it’s 9 days.

    It’s time for another dose of paracetamol! Must go!
     
  7. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,065
    Female
    Chester
    We didn't get more cats until both had passed, probably circumstances rather than anything else, first cat disappeared on my birthday (OH and dau were on holiday in Turkey - I couldn't get travel insurance), we found his body 4 weeks later, we knew he was ill.

    Son was arriving 7 weeks after the cat disappeared, so I didn't want a new cat and a new baby in the house at the same time, then when we lost second cat (poorly - vet visit) it just made sense to try and get kittens whilst I was at home all the time. Not sure timing was 100% right but not sure it would have been any better any time in next 3 years. We lost both those cats when they were 14 and current cats are now 13, although they don't seem that old.

    As our dog is now 15 and will be 16 in March we could have some trauma to come. We are dreading losing the dog, because we know the kids will be broken hearted, let alone us.

    Sorry to hear you are feeling nauseous spamar.

    Re decision, it doesn't have to be made for a few months, based on normal paperwork might be filed with minutes to spare!! Dau wants to look at the other 4 unis she put on form on the official offer days, so muggins is taking her - I might have got out of one, as it clashes with a fencing tournament.
     
  8. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    Morning all,

    Jm, it's a big decision so I can understand why Miss Jm want to be as sure as possible before making it. Sorry that it means even more work for you though!

    Spamar, I'm sorry you are feeling rough again (((hugs))). Codeine does that to me but I wouldn't expect you to suddenly start reacting after you have taken it for so long.

    Yes, those of us who share our lives with furry friends certainly set ourselves up for a lot of heartbreak :( although I think the joy they bring is worth the price. Have you seen the poem 'You have chosen tears? http://www.oes.org/page2/8647~You_have_chosen_tears_-_poem.html So true but I cannot read it without sobbing!

    Ann, I hope all is as well as it can be.
     
  9. Annier999

    Annier999 New member

    Apr 8, 2018
    2
    #9749 Annier999, Jan 17, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2019
    Also get hold of the book Contented Dementia. It uses the idea of photograph albums to explain how long term memory stays intact even when short term memory deteriorates. Also gives really helpful tips and techniques for dealing with your client or loved one when their reality is different from yours.
     
  10. doodle1

    doodle1 Registered User

    May 11, 2012
    241
    Congrats to your daughter JM. Both my girls got into Cambridge .My eldest got an offer from a different college ,went and didn't look back. My youngest got into her first choice and that suited her. Would strongly urge her to take up the place. Sad to say it ,it does give them an advantage In the job market . Best wishes
     
  11. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,065
    Female
    Chester
    Thanks for your comments, they are helpful. The different college isn't an issue for her. She had said she wouldn't go with a 'hill' college but she has got one that is central. If it was our son, we would be encouraging him, as we can see he would be happy with the level of study. For dau it is different, 4 years ago before she got ill we didn't expect her to go to university, but to try and follow a cycling career and then uni later. Whilst she has been ill for a long time, we can see that things are progressing and she loves her cycling and wants to continue with it. And this is our concern, when well she would train for 12 to 15 hours a week, and with a course that is 5.5 days a week this is unlikely to happen. Also many races will require her to leave Cambridge on Friday night and this would mean she would miss Saturday labs. So if she does choose Cambridge she would be putting her cycling on hold for 3 years. She doesn't know how good she could be but if she got fit enough, at other unis fitting in weekend trips to Belgium to race is a possibility and at Cambridge it isn't. She has always found too much study time frustrating as she likes to fit in lots of other things, eg this week there is no training and so she has been baking and playing guitar, and she always wants/needs to do lots of things, and it is this 'need' to fit in other things, and the frustration/boredom that comes when she can't that concerns us.

    So visit to MIL on 27th Dec:

    OH had a call from his sister just before we went to suggest a live in carer should be thought about, and wanting him to look at how this could be done in a way she thought was appropriate ie an ensuite and other types of modifications.

    When OH spoke to MIL the day before to confirm times she said she had a blood test she had forgotten about, mid morning, not a problem we would make sure we got there before she left (we left at 7 - and did journey in under 3 hours) at 10.30.

    Arrangements to visit were only made on 23 Dec, so not surprising this got missed, but adding to other things maybe not - OH hadn't got round to phoning MIL and she phoned, OH was out, so I could make arrangements:rolleyes: - day I had been suggesting for a few weeks:D

    You may recall both myself and dau have been concerned about MIL on recent visits, but OH always dismisses us with it is normal old age related memory loss and nothing is wrong. He has always had a very poor understanding of my mum's issues and a friend who over a dozen of us think has dementia he again says normal age related memory loss so I was going looking for issues, which OH is aware of and dismissive of.

    MIL produced an xmas present for dau hastily wrapping it in some discarded tissue paper in the other corner of the room we were in and a half round of stilton for us, again hastily wrapped in foil in the kitchen in sight of us. Whilst MIL has always been a bit minimalist (polite way of saying miserly as far as OH is concerned) with presents they have always been wrapped when we arrived, so wrapping them whilst we were in the room seemed odd, especially as MIL was a bit odd in the way she did it, and to me was ringing alarm bells.

    OH took MIL for her blood test whilst we walked our dog (we got lost:eek::confused:, took ages and I was panicking as at 20kg dog is a bit heavy to carry far - was really worrying at one stage we would have to carry her as her dodgy back leg didn't weight bare properly a couple of times - but all was well thanks to google maps in the end:D). OH declared that MIL has seemed fine to him on the journey so there was no problem to worry about anything at the moment and he didn't know why his sister was talking about live in carers. When he said this I was thinking hostess mode and OH was behaving like an invisible. I suggested he phone MIL's friend and ask her how things were as she sees more of MIL than we do in the brief snapshot of our visit.

    Then as it was time for lunch, a meal MIL has always prepared promptly but she didn't suggest preparing until 1ish, she said she had an issue as she had 3 portions of different things but not 4 portions, so we'd have to have 2 different main courses. However as she had plenty of pudding it would all be fine. On the phone she had asked me to bring a pudding as she didn't have anything but said she had plenty of main course food. She had no recollection of asking me to bring pudding. It was very odd but again OH thinks this is just normal old age behaviour and nothing to worry about.

    The visit passed in it's normal slow dreary fashion, after lunch kids went for a run and I walked the dog again so OH could chat with his mum.

    We both had a nosey round the bungalow to see how a live in carer would work, OH is adamant that a live in carer would need an en suite as MIL would not want to share bathroom facilities to preserve her dignity and privacy, there was no point in telling him by the time she needs live in care this is the least of your worries. Sensibly OH thinks that trying to get her to have someone in during the day when it is needed and increase the time they are there would make more sense and then go for a care home. He said he hasn't a clue how an ensuite would be fitted, given he would not be prepared to action it, SIL is in the US and MIL wouldn't understand the point. I said I thought a live in carer might expect wifi and a multi channel TV more than an ensuite, which he couldn't understand but I don't think many would want to live in a house with no TV.

    When we left OH was his normal fed up self moaning about his mum's complete lack of empathy, she has never had much empathy, and we have all always found visiting her hard, hence annual visit, but she was a bit removed and vacant this time. Later at home dau commented on MIL repeating several stories several times in conversation with dau, which she said was unusual.

    All in all I think there are clear early signs of dementia, but OH is having none of it, and thinks his mum is fine living like she is for now. He did phone her friend, and discovered she had suggested the possibility of live in care, but not now, in the future as MIL is adamant she wants to remain in her own home. o_O OH did ask MIL's friend if MIL was overly relying on friends and taking them for granted, and friend said, no, at the moment they can all manage things.

    Since our visit, MIL should have had a cataract op, was meant to be 4th Jan and this was cancelled the day before by hospital so should have been last week now. MIL didn't really want this, but had been told she couldn't continue to drive :eek: so is having it done. We weren't sure about her driving 5 years ago, but her friend says it is ok for now.

    Not my issue per se, and not sure OH wants to get too involved, due to awful childhood and his mother's lifetime of remoteness in OH's adult life. I'm dreading a crisis and OH having to deal with it as it will make him miserable and moody and resentful. His sister would want to help, but not easy to get to Scotland from the US, and his brother has nothing to do with his mum due to childhood etc issues. With my experience of mum's dementia and hindsight of the odd things she did in the few years beforehand massive alarm bells were ringing but no point in discussing with OH.
     
  12. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    6,951
    Suffolk
    #9752 Spamar, Jan 17, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2019
    Hi Slugsta, I’ll try and read the poem at some point, but if it’s going to make me cry, I don’t think now is the time!

    Managed to go shopping this morning. I would of had lunch there as well, but the cafe was full and there was a long queue. I don’t do queues! sorry about my awful English!
     
  13. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,065
    Female
    Chester
    #9753 jugglingmum, Jan 17, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2019
    I haven't read it as need to be in the mood to read something sad. Sorry you are in a low mood @Spamar have a chilling out afternoon in front of your log burner. Tut tut over your awful English :p:D not what I expect from you, let's hope the grammar police aren't about (somehow this makes me think of @nitram but I don't think he has ever picked anyone up on their grammar)
     
  14. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    6,951
    Suffolk
    So difficult, isn’t it? All I can suggest is keep plugging away at your OH to agree to whatever you feel is right. Obviously some degree of care is necessary. Of course she doesn’t want to go into a home! Find me a person who does!

    My step granddau, at Imperial College has a friend who is a keen rower. Not sure of her standard, but she regularly gets up at 04:30 to go training! But if your dau wants to give cycling a go, is there a place where she can fit everything in, work, practise, events. Has there been a thought of her deferring, and coming back to uni in a few years time? Or wouldn’t that work for her?

     
  15. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,065
    Female
    Chester
    OH is on the right page on that bit, he didn't see the benefits of live in care over a home, and certainly didn't want to have to deal with organising it. MIL has always preferred living in isolated places (I was going to type rural but that wouldn't be adequate) and doesn't like too much hustle and bustle, and in recent times never has. She is very haughty and snobby as well and quick to look down on others she considers less fortunate - a couple of her less endearing habits. If the issues are mainly a physical deterioration, I understand the benefits of live in care to her. OH commented she wanted to continue to be able to look out of her kitchen window across the fields but he doubts she actually does that anymore anyway so it is what she thinks she wants not what she needs - highly perceptive for him I thought, I was actually surprised at his comment.
     
  16. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    6,951
    Suffolk
    I’m in front of log burner, but it’s not lit yet.
     
  17. jugglingmum

    jugglingmum Registered User

    Jan 5, 2014
    5,065
    Female
    Chester
    reducing particulate pollution by not lighting it, I'm trying to iron
     
  18. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    4,624
    USA
    Reducing energy use by not plugging in iron? That was cheeky of me, sorry!

    I hear you on the concerns about MIL. I have two aunts on my father's side, my dad's sisters. One is my dear Aunt M with whom I'm close and the other is my "dotty" aunt D. Aunt D always had mental health and emotional issues and starting a few years ago, she was getting odder and odder and I immediately suspected dementia. My aunt M and her husband were having none of that, of course. I tried to be extremely careful and circumspect about what I would say and how, and I realize I'm primed to "see" dementia. A year ago dotty Aunt D was officially diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment, or MCI. she goes for another assessment in April so we shall see. As she is well looked after and we have POA it's mostly moot, except I think it's better to know what is going on so my aunt M can stop expecting her sister to come to her senses and do things.

    The situation with your MIL sounds complicated on so many levels. I can well understand not wanting to care for a parent who was disappointing and struggled for a long time with my feelings about caring for my mother. It is a valid consideration. Add the distance, which makes everything challenging, and I can see why your OH, on the main, would rather not get involved at he moment. Many of us wait for the crisis, for a variety of reasons. On the other hand, your OH clearly grasps that at some point, it will be about what his mother needs and not what she wants, which can be a tough concept to understand for many of us.

    If it were me I would want to get something in place before there is a crisis, but that is not always possible. I can guess how I would feel in your shoes with my own MIL, though, and no clear answers.

    I also see that Miss JM has some hard thinking to do and that won't be easy, either, but at least it's a good sort of difficult decision!

    Ann, hoping all is well?
     
  19. Spamar

    Spamar Registered User

    Oct 5, 2013
    6,951
    Suffolk
    I know just what you mean by being primed to see dementia. I think it must go for all carers. My cousins wife and I were discussing a mutual friend. We both agreed immediately that we thought he had early signs of dementia and moved our talk to how his wife going to cope. Not well, was out joint conclusion, unfortunately.

     
  20. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,905
    Male
    North Manchester
    Jumping in.
    I think it maybe more appropriate to 'former carers', whilst actively caring I was too focused on my wife.
    After her death I joined a, Big Lottery Funded, Project Steering Group related to Dementia Friendly Communities and soon realised that I could spot dementia symptoms by observation, sadly funds ran out and the whole set up was disbanded. I have since found another dementia related niche.

    I also think many professionals may also be able to do this but maybe do not take any action until symptoms increase because the system could not cope with the extra referrals.
     

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