what do we do ????


Registered User
Dec 23, 2007
Barnstaple North Devon UK
On Sat morning we found my wifes mother aged 84 who lives alone still undressed at 11am.
she had no idea what day or time it was, she didnt know how to dress, how to cook or make a cup of tea, sje thought that her new radio was a tv and coudnt work it, she thought the TV remote controlled the clock upstairs.. and so on
The Doctor was called but it was 4pm and too late to put any care in place untl after new year.
Between us we are having to dress her, cook, she does feed herself but it is soooooooo slow. she has a kind of vacant look and really stoops.
she has also seen her dog that died 8 years ago.

We both work full time, and we both find it incredibly difficult to see her like this and dress/bath/give medication etc etc, and my wife is frequently silently crying.

We have come to terms that we are alone over the holiday period, but what then?? where do we start?
is there help out there? we do not want her in a home, and she certainly does not want to leave her home.
If we can get some idea of what we have to do after the holidays, it will help us cope better.

we would appreciate some basic information

John & Bridget.
PS Happy Christmas...

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
Dear John and Bridget,

Didn`t the doctor give you any advice for after the holidays?

All you can do is ask your mother-in law`s GP to refer her to emergency Social Services. They will send someone round do assess her needs, and it will be up to you all to decide whether what is on offer is sufficient to keep her safe and cared for.

You do not say whether this behaviour is a sudden change or has developed gradually. It is up to the GP to diagnose her condition or send her for tests.

You sound in shock. So many crises happen during holidays when everything shuts down. I do hope you manage to have some holiday and post an update when you know what`s what.

Take care xx

PS I have merged your two Threads. I feel you`ll get the best support here. I have deleted your duplicate post.
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Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
Dear John and Bridget

Welcome to Talking Point

If this is a sudden thing I'd be thinking stroke to be honest - this sounds exactly what happened to my mother. Mind you, she was taken to hospital, checked in a desultory way, given a couple of paracetamol and sent home. :mad: So she didn't get much help either.

How much help will be forthcoming is very dependant on where you are and her financial resources, unfortunately. Some areas are better than other when it comes to providing support, although I suspect that what you might consider adequate and what the LA (Local Authority) might consider adequate may be a distance apart. You may be able to get 3 or 4 visits a day (To get her up and dressed, given lunch, given tea and then put to bed) but it is unlikely to be more than that.


Registered User
Oct 9, 2003
Birmingham Hades
Dear John & Bridget
all good advice,but I would not wait until after the holiday.
Telephone Social Services ,there will be a duty officer ,and tell them that you cannot manage and you wish to know when will help be available.
Hope this helps


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Dear John and Bridget,

I agree with Norman. Ring ss in the morning and stress that this is an emergency. They can put an emergency care package in place immediately, and arrange a more long-term package for afterwards, if hospitalisation is not necessary. But stress that you need help now!

Good luck,

Margaret W

Registered User
Apr 28, 2007
North Derbyshire
Hi both,

You might have to lurch through the holiday period, but basically she needs to be in secure accommodation, cos if she has lost the perception of day and night she is like my mum was, and is going to be found on the street in the middle of the night. Now it is up to you how you respond to that, and whether you think you can manage it. We couldn't so we had to find a home for her. Mum is still getting up in the middle of the night, we are now recently finding her in her nightclothes ready for bed at 3 p.m. one day, and at 12 noon today.

We did notice she had become obsessed with looking at her watch, but really that was just a pointer to her problem.

Hope this helps, and keep strong