1. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003
    Hi everyone....

    I have a dilemma. Dad is going into respite care for about 10 days next month (I will not bore you with the trouble we've had getting to this stage). Mum is ill herself and needs the break so much. How she has coped this far god only knows. Altruism and love can be a dangerous thing that all I know.

    The problem is, when we take dad to the respite home and have to say goodbye for a while, what on earth are we going to tell him. Mum and I have always been so honest with dad; he is a caring lovely man, not aggressive at all. He may or may not pick up on what is happening, just depends on what kind of day he is having. He's coped well with day care, thinking it is a club, so we may well say it is a hotel he is staying in to give mum a rest. But if he gets any idea that it is more than a day or two (its 10 days respite), he may lose that calmness he's had. It's gut renching working out what to say and I guess so many of you have been through this. My thoughts are to be straight with dad and tell him that mum needs a rest, but he will definitely be coming home in a short while, that is, it is temporary and promise that he will be coming home soon.

    Just wondered how you dealt with it and do I just have to accept that just for this once truth may not be the best option.

    thanks for all your support
  2. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    Hi Charlie,

    My Dad has been in a home for many months now and every evening when Mum is leaving to go home she says she's going to do a bit of shopping now. She hates telling the fib but otherwise Dad gets agitated, thinking he should be going with her. I would imagine that what you have suggested is the kindest for your Dad, though almost certainly hard for you.

    Hope it goes well,
  3. thompsonsom

    thompsonsom Registered User

    Jul 4, 2004
    Hi Charlie

    We too had this dilema first time for respite and we told m/in/law that she was going to stay in a hotel for a few days as we were going away on holiday and that she was staying with friends like she meets at the day centre, she wasn't happy when we arrived as she read the nursing home sign but once inside she was all sweetness and smiles for the carers whilst looking daggers at us, we left when tea was being served and she soon settled in alright but when we went to pick her back up she thought she was in hospital and kept asking us if they had said it was alright for her to come home. We left a note for her telling her what date we would be back to collect her which seemed to suffice her even though she hadn't a clue what the date was. It is hard but its something you have to do in order to continue caring at home. I suppose the fortunate thing about alzheimers is that the person with the illness forgets its much harder for the carer and family as she was in my thoughts constantly whilst i was on holiday and it was very difficult to switch off.
    If your dad is as settled and happy as you say then trying to explain that mum needs a break as she is ill would probably go down better, you know your dad better than any of us and you will know how best to explain to him, tell your mum its a bit like taking a child to nursery school for the 1st time when they won't let go and scream the place down and mum worries all day long but the child quietens down the minute mum is out of sight and thoroughly enjoys themselves.

    Hope this helps

  4. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003
    Hi Jan/Daughter,

    having a young daughter, I remember that well. Thank you both for the advice. Forgot about the fact that dad still reads everything well and I'm prepared for the dagger look - he will know something is up and that look will slice me in half.

    There's simply no choice, but he doesn't know that. I'm going to try and keep mum out of the trip to drop him off and will spend some time with her on the day.

    again thankyou
  5. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    West Sussex
    Hi Charlie, I would suggest that you don't tell him till you have to. Yes he may get wind that some thing is up, but if you try to explain before the event, he will just become more anxious, as will your Mum. If you explain that your Mum has been poorly and now has been told by the GP that she needs to go away for a bit of a rest, (if need be say to hospital as she is poorly or something) and that the GP has arranged for him to stay at this very nice etc. etc. until your Mum is well again and can take him home. I did similar with my Mum and it worked quite well, although she too read the signs on the wall etc and glared at me a bit. It was hard Charlie, I cried, but I spent most of that first respite sleeping, I really needed to, your Mum does too. Love She. XX
  6. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Hi Charlie,

    As I had to go through this with my parents only a fortnight ago, I can empathise in spades. I know exactly how you are feeling - and it is not a nice feeling at all.

    My father figured out that something was going on, but basically we didn't tell him or my mother anything until we got to the Nursing Home. I had geared myself up for a bit of a fight, but amazingly they both were totally calm and quite happy with the idea of living in a 'hotel' for a short while. I felt awful about telling lies, especially since I knew that they wouldn't be coming home again ever. I felt absolutely gutted for days afterwards even though I knew that I had done the right and only thing possible.

    Two weeks on and they have both got used to their lovely room and the routine of the Home. They have totally forgotten about the bungalow now as well. They are both confused of course, but not in any way agitated or distressed over the move, which is a huge relief to me.

    It may not turn out quite as badly as you fear.

  7. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    West Sussex
    Dear Jude, thanks for letting us all know how well your parents have settled, I do hope this will send a message to other TP users in this awful heartrending situation. Thinking of you, love She. XX
  8. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    "I have to do some shopping now" is what I say to Jan each and every day. Coupled with a preamble "just putting my shoes on" and a finale "I'll be back very soon".

    She understands what I mean and smiles. All of these are true - I do go shopping before I next see her [have to eat after all or buy yet more petrol].

    She also understands "I'm going to the bar, do you want a drink too?" rather than "are you thirsty".

    Whatever works.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.