Which is more important: happiness (in own home) or safety (in CH)

garnuft

Registered User
Sep 7, 2012
6,586
0
I agree with lowlander.
Why do so few men post?
Probably because they are not doing the caring, they've passed the baton to their wives or the State.
That's why you get women posting about their MIL.
Has there ever been a post by a man about his care for his MIL?
I doubt it.
Women are not emotionally stronger.
They choose their battles and stick with it.
 

Wirralson

Account Closed
May 30, 2012
658
0
It is I believe, your husband's mother whom you are writing about.
Why is he not the person writing? Why are you taking this responsibility ? Why are you even contemplating looking after someone else's mother?

I can understand people, although almost universally a daughter, attempting to look after a mother, but, really, your husband's mother? You don't have the same childhood links.
Why don't men look after their own mothers?
Do you think they would?
Why do so few men ever post on this site?
Answers on a (very small) postcard please.

My kind regards
L

Lowlander,

Well, I'm male and post on this site! I'm not sure men don't look after their own mothers, but there I think are a number of factors feed into the reason for women being more frequent posters on here and more frequent carers.

Probably the main ones these are the interlinked ones of culture and generation and socio-economic pressure. Dementia is predominantly (though I know not exclusively) a condition of the elderly - say 65 - 85. So their children will be roughly my age (51) or a few years either side. And (to generalise even further) even in my generation the social pattern tended to be that the men worked full-time for as long as they could and the women, even if successful professionals, took career breaks to raise children. I know (before you reply) that this wasn't and isn't true of a sizeable minority and that there were and are profound socio-economic changes going on. Put simply, in cash and pension terms, it isn't viable for both partners or the higher earner to stop work (and with that, income) and become full-time carers. I know, I'm in a relationship (but a long-distance one due to work pressure) and I couldn't survive economically in the current climate doing that (and believe me I am under extreme pressure to do so). One at least has to earn, and earn full-time. Historically, rightly or wrongly, the trend has tended for the generation we are discussing, to be the male (in a heterosexual relationship) who has gone on being the breadwinner. (I do know of cases where the opposite has happened - and the man has become the carer for children or elderly parents or in-laws.) The younger generation (say under 35) may not have the same experience for a host of reasons, not least of which are changing economic and employment patters and relationship changes. Also my generation inherited an element of our parents cultural expectations. I'm Scots by background and the pressure there was for the youngest daughter to care for the parents regardless of her own circumstances, and the eldest son to be the administrator/financial provider for parents (even if he was a complete incompetent). My Irish and Irish descended friends report similar pressures in their lives, but there was a marked difference in my circle of English friends where things were less predictable. Last but by no means least is the dignity/privacy aspect of intimate matters like toiletting. My mother will let my father assist her occasionally now, but would not let me do so, and would prefer a female to assist her. That's also a generational and cultural factor - one of my partner's friends is Dutch-born and slightly older than we are (51 - she's about 57) and she and her now deceased parents and aunt were much more relaxed about intimate functions such as toiletting and bathing being performed by a person of the opposite sex, something she attributes to the hongerwinter (hunger winter) of 1944/5 and its aftermath, which forced the Dutch population to accept previously unthinkable compromises in personal care and many other matters. Whether her reading of Dutch culture is valid or not, her family attitudes offered more scope for flexibility in care patterns and who did what. What I would say is personal experiences and cultural and economic factors shape what happens.

Finally there is the liking/not liking factor. I'm not particularly fond of my own parents for a host of reasons, and find my partner's mother and step-father more likeable (if a little distant). You can't choose your relatives! Also, some spouses/partners may see caring for an in-law as an extention of their relationship with a spouse. Here again cultural factors come into play, as well as the fact that some daughters do actually like their in-laws!

Kind regards

Wirralson
 
Last edited:

missmarple

Registered User
Jan 14, 2013
204
0
I just think men find it easier to cut off from other people's suffering, and to put no 1 first. Look at it in other spheres: war, sexual violence, most violent crime. Women tend to pick up on other people s feelings and needs. I actually think yes, we are more emotionally aware and willing to take on others' problems. It s not always a good thing, not for us at least. I've been in counselling for a year, to help me cope with my dad s alzheimers and my brother s mental illness. I nearly moved in with them ( they live together) to be their carer. I m pretty glad I didn t.
Yes, maybe I'll get flamed for what I ve written. Of course there are some women who are cold and un empathetic. There are some men who are kind and put others first. But the bigger picture is usually that women do the difficult emotional work, while male,relatives are happy to downplay the problem and let sisters/ wives get on with it.
 

garnuft

Registered User
Sep 7, 2012
6,586
0
and to put no 1 first.

I think there we have it.

Men care because of their needs.

Women for others.

No man would care for a woman he didn't like.

Women do it daily.
 

Wirralson

Account Closed
May 30, 2012
658
0
So men find a long winded way to get off the hook.

Really? So you suggest I and other men should bankrupt themselves and our partners and families and make ourselves state benefits-dependant? On missmarple's point, In my own case I have no female sibling - there is no-one else. But bankrupt, homeless and unemployed I am no use to anyone. In a relationship, one partner at least has to bring in income - my point was that for the generation involved it has historically tended statistically to be the man who did that - not that this was morally right or wrong.

It is open to women to refuse to act as carers if they wish and refuse to accept the baton, as you describe it, or for couples to negotiate a different care pattern if they wish to do so (woman stays in employment, man acts as carer). It doesn't say much for the quality of the relationship if they can't negotiate a compromise. As I said in my post, I know of several examples of this last pattern, and I'd expect it to become more prevalent. I know of examples where both partners have chosen to stay in full-time employment because of economic uncertainty and the need to provide for their child(ren). But in most cases where one partner gives up work, simple economics is going to dictate that it is the one with the bigger pay packet and/or most secure employment that should stay in full-time employment. The money has to come from somewhere, as I can't see benefits increasing or employment improving any time soon.

Kind regards

Wirralson
 
Last edited:

Bumblegirl

Registered User
Nov 17, 2012
86
0
There's nothing to stop a woman putting number 1 first, if she really wants to. It might be against our nature but we should indeed be self-centred. I'm doing my best to act like a man and be objective about my parents. I will support but I will not sacrifice my life to look after them.

If it was my partner or child that needed help (any help) it would be a completely different ball game, even when that child is an adult.
BG
 

Wirralson

Account Closed
May 30, 2012
658
0
I just think men find it easier to cut off from other people's suffering, and to put no 1 first. Look at it in other spheres: war, sexual violence, most violent crime. Women tend to pick up on other people s feelings and needs. I actually think yes, we are more emotionally aware and willing to take on others' problems. It s not always a good thing, not for us at least. I've been in counselling for a year, to help me cope with my dad s alzheimers and my brother s mental illness. I nearly moved in with them ( they live together) to be their carer. I m pretty glad I didn t.
Yes, maybe I'll get flamed for what I ve written. Of course there are some women who are cold and un empathetic. There are some men who are kind and put others first. But the bigger picture is usually that women do the difficult emotional work, while male,relatives are happy to downplay the problem and let sisters/ wives get on with it.

Missmarple, Up to a point I'd agree with you. But I'd add that sometimes cutting yourself off and being emotionally ruthless is a practical necessity for survival. I'd also add that I know of women who've chosen to be carers as preferable to commuting and employment, at least partly because they could rely on the income from their partner. I think the decision as to "who cares" is often a more subtle and complex one - which is better - the son/husband who gives up work and becomes a full-time carer or the one who stays at work and funds a carer? I wouldn't presume to say.

Kind regards

Wirralson
 

garnuft

Registered User
Sep 7, 2012
6,586
0
So you suggest I and other men should bankrupt themselves

Really, honestly and truly?
Women can make money just as good as you.

The world won't come to a halt if you don't go to work.
 
Last edited:

Wirralson

Account Closed
May 30, 2012
658
0
Few men post because women are by and large more compassionate and caring. Very few chose to work in NHs, that should tell you something. Women are also emotionally stronger.

Padraig,

I assume you are referring specifically to front line carers in the NHS, but I don't think your analysis quite holds up. A couple of interesting comments why men didn;t historically become nurses are at the link below:

http://www.nursingtimes.net/why-are-there-so-few-men-in-nursing/849269.article

Economics plays a part: men do tend to choose employment that pays more than nursing. Where I am, that includes driving jobs.

The reasons for men not choosing nursing in the past were partly cultural - any of my school contemporaries (all-boys school!) who had expressed an interest in nursing (this was in the 70s) would have been ridiculed beyond belief, although I remember a careers visit where we encountered an ex-docker and ex-railwayman working as nurses in the local general hospital. Now, among the age range my partner teaches (11 - 18) she tells me it is regarded as a left-field, but entirely acceptable career choice, and she thinks more popular with boys (who see it as more socially acceptable and secure than more traditional male careers) than girls (who see it as a stereotypical career). Totally unscientific as a sample, but it is perhaps an indication that attitudes are changing

But the number of men in nursing is actually increasing - it is around 10% according to the Nursing and Midwifery Council and is expected to increase as 14% of nursing students are men:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-145183/More-men-work-hospital-nurses.html

I work as an NHS administrator, and a fair number of the colleagues I work with are male nurses. Several are ex-military, not all with a military nursing background. Men are very rare in nursing specialties like midwifery, where there is an issue of service user acceptance, but are more often found in things like cancer services, critical care and psychiatry.

Meanwhile the majority of doctors, historically male, will soon be female:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/a...utnumber-men-numbers-medical-school-fold.html

Again there are other factors involved here, including university admissions and female educational attainment levels being higher than male ones.

Kind regards

Wirralson
 

Winnie10

Registered User
Feb 25, 2013
37
0
Getting back to the original question

I wonder whether your husband is delaying his mum going into a home, is because of cost implications. She owns her home yes? Would this have to be sold to pay for the care? Its something which he doesn't want to deal with, emptying the house and hoping for a buyer?
 

Padraig

Registered User
Dec 10, 2009
1,038
0
Hereford
Wirralson,
I'm sorry I stand corrected it was just my observation of society. I'm in no position to comment about caring for a parent or relative other than my late wife, our children and grandchildren. Their welfare comes first and I would consider it an honour to care for them, just as I did for my wife.
The one thing I dread is to have someone to 'care' for me don't think I could handle it.
I'm just a lone stray.
 

starryuk

Registered User
Nov 8, 2012
1,323
0
If someone is happy where they are, that may be a situation to treasure and value, despite the risks.
I so agree with you, Butter. My mum said (when she still had some logic left) that she wanted to be free to wander. "So what? Someone will bring me back if I get lost. If I get run over by a bus, so be it."

The point BE makes raises the ethical questions. Some people believe life should be maintained at all costs. Other people believe that death is better than some life.

...and can we/should we/do we have the right to use those beliefs to make decisions on behalf of someone else when we think they have lost capacity?
 

Lowlander

Registered User
Jun 3, 2013
113
0
Scotland
If I refused to do things husband couldn't do it. Also I work part time (made redundant a couple of years ago) and he works full time. Our kids are grown up and we are in our 50s.

It's not so much the actual doing (she has carers) but the responsiblity of it running two households and trying to guess what might be wrong with her house at anyone time.


Thank you all for your replies. It's a difficult dilemma and of course it is not my decision. I just know if it was my mum she would be in a home already.

My post was not helpful in retrospect. I apologise to Pippop1.
If proper care for our very ill relatives were properly funded, we would have different lives.
I hope you can find the strength to cope and I admire you enormously.
Best wishes
 

Wirralson

Account Closed
May 30, 2012
658
0
Wirralson,
I'm sorry I stand corrected it was just my observation of society. I'm in no position to comment about caring for a parent or relative other than my late wife, our children and grandchildren. Their welfare comes first and I would consider it an honour to care for them, just as I did for my wife.
The one thing I dread is to have someone to 'care' for me don't think I could handle it.
I'm just a lone stray.

Hi Padraig,

I wouldn't regard what I posted as a correction. I'd have thought the same as you until I started working in the NHS. Part of my reason for posting was simply put an alternative view about male behaviour and attitudes, whcih I think can be quite complex and also to show the contribution of the male nurses I've met. And your attitude to care does you credit, and I wish I could emulate it.

Best wishes

Wirralson
 

mariebee_

Registered User
Dec 18, 2012
4
0
The people who say my mum hates all her carers... that is because she has vitamin b and d deficiency. Please feed berocca or similar so that at least they can be happy. I really don't think it's enough for someone to 'pop their head round the door' to check on the patient. People with dementia really do need 24 hour care and proper NUTRITION in order to be happy (and for own peace of mind and carers happiness too).
When old people are grumpy or aggressive (scared you want to kill them) it's because their bodies cannot uptake nutrients for brain to function well, so brain default is defense. Don't let unhappy angry last years make carers lives miserable too. You don't need to remember anything in order to be happy. But you do need 24hr company and more easily digestible food. No old people should be grumpy angry or scared, it's 2013 now.
 

janma221

Registered User
Apr 23, 2013
284
0
Powys
Maribee to be honest my mother was always rather rude to people she didn't like including friends and family if they didn't agree with her. She sees the carers as an intrusion into her home. On the plus side she is much nicer to me since developing AD than she has ever been.
take care
Jan xx
 

Delphie

Registered User
Dec 14, 2011
1,269
0
The people who say my mum hates all her carers... that is because she has vitamin b and d deficiency. Please feed berocca or similar so that at least they can be happy. I really don't think it's enough for someone to 'pop their head round the door' to check on the patient. People with dementia really do need 24 hour care and proper NUTRITION in order to be happy (and for own peace of mind and carers happiness too).
When old people are grumpy or aggressive (scared you want to kill them) it's because their bodies cannot uptake nutrients for brain to function well, so brain default is defense. Don't let unhappy angry last years make carers lives miserable too. You don't need to remember anything in order to be happy. But you do need 24hr company and more easily digestible food. No old people should be grumpy angry or scared, it's 2013 now.

If only it were that simple!

My mum had a full range of blood tests pre diagnosis. No vitamin deficiencies.

That's not to say that a poor diet can't have a negative impact on dementia. Of course it can. But a good diet is not a cure all and dementia diagnosed people with optimum nutrition will still experience fear and anger.
 

Wildflower

Registered User
Apr 6, 2013
227
0
Brighton
,
The people who say my mum hates all her carers... that is because she has vitamin b and d deficiency. Please feed berocca or similar so that at least they can be happy. I really don't think it's enough for someone to 'pop their head round the door' to check on the patient. People with dementia really do need 24 hour care and proper NUTRITION in order to be happy (and for own peace of mind and carers happiness too).
When old people are grumpy or aggressive (scared you want to kill them) it's because their bodies cannot uptake nutrients for brain to function well, so brain default is defense. Don't let unhappy angry last years make carers lives miserable too. You don't need to remember anything in order to be happy. But you do need 24hr company and more easily digestible food. No old people should be grumpy angry or scared, it's 2013 now.

mariebee, you have a very simplistic view of things. I've noticed it is your gran who has dementia and I was just wondering if you are very young.
 

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
125,617
Messages
1,840,113
Members
76,560
Latest member
Aga Queen