What do i say


New member
Oct 12, 2023
My sister who's 74 and had alzheimer's for 6 years now , her husband says he can't care for her anymore , she only has incontinence problems , which he can't cope with , now she's been placed in full time care which I feel is way to soon , she's such a gentle kind person , cared for everyone , she was a midwife and worked endless hours , I go every day , it breaks my heart when she asks why am I in here what have I done , what do I say to help her , any advice would be brilliant .

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
Welcome to the forum @nancymay

Your brother in law cannot be forced to care for his wife. Not everyone is a natural carer and managing incontinence can be very difficult.

Try not to be too disapproving of him. He is probably as heartbroken as you are.

what do I say to help her

All you can say is she is where she is to help her get stronger.


Volunteer Host
Mar 2, 2017
Hi @nancymay and welcome. I was sole carer for my wife, taking early retirement to look after her when her Alzheimer's Disease began to affect her ability to cope by herself for more than a few minutes. I know how hard that is, physically and mentally, and how much 6 years (and more) of caring will have taken its toll on your brother-in-law.

Placing someone in a care home is not easy. For me, facing the fact that I could not give my wife the level of care she deserves was hard. Harder still was to make the care home decision but it was the best thing that I have ever done for my wife.

Whatever your private thoughts, your sister's husband hasn't taken the decision lightly. You can support them both by accepting it. Over time your sister will hopefully settle and begin to think of the care home as the place where she now lives. You might also consider not visiting so frequently as this might help her to settle more quickly.

If she asks why she is there you need not answer in any detail but find a form of words that 'explains'. Then distract her by talking about something else such as the treat that you have brought to share with her. If you feel heartbroken, try to keep this to yourself and always meet her with a smile on your face.
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New member
Oct 12, 2023
I totally understand my brother in laws decision as he's very poorly now through stress and taking care of my sister , but my major concern is where my sister has been placed , my sister and myself are worried she is not getting the best care , the place is for very advanced dementia , my sister is not in the category, she's scared when she hears residents screaming and shouting , there are no activities , , but we are helpless as my neice has power of attorney and refuses to move my sister to somewhere more suitable , what can we do .


Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
South coast
Your sister may be further on than you realise. Incontinence usually starts at the beginning of the advanced stages, so your sister is probably entering that stage. In the care home most of her problems are likely to be "hidden" and not apparent.
My mum moved into her care home at about the same stage (or perhaps a little earlier) and my brother visited and told me afterwards that she seemed perfectly OK and he couldnt understand why she was in "that place", but I knew everything else that had been going on. You say that she only has incontinence, but I do assure you that there will have been so, so much more than that........

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