New Thread for Those Who Care for Elderly Parents (friends or other relatives, too) - Page 3
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  1. #31
    Registered User Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    Treasure the little, good things, fHg. But I'm sure you know that. That's so neat about the jars.

    Would it work with your dad and the AC to point out your mom needs to feel comfortable? Sometimes people will do things for others they won't do for themselves.

    Good move faxing the questions and concerns to the doctor. He's going to be an important ally for your whole family.
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  2. #32
    Registered User Dutchie's Avatar
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    I never really understood the 'sandwich' generation till the past few years.

    My own parents seem to be more able to make difficult decisions but maybe that is because I live here and have no siblings so they are used to 'fending' more for themselves. They have worked every day of their married life and still do even though my dad is 85. They have put their store and house up for sale now though since they feel that it may be time to retire.

    I don't even know where to start with my parents in law.

    Some of you may have read about the conversation I had with my father in law last Saturday (in the chat) when he told me that my eldest son had been spreading dirty rumors about us. Firstly we didn't want to talk with our son about it but also understood that this wasn't really an option. My son knows absolutely nothing about anything that was said to me. (My father in law denies ever having had the conversation.)

    My father in law is an 'official victim of war' as it is called here. This means that he is entitled to all sorts of help.
    He didn't fight in WW 2 but has extremely traumatic memories about it as a young man and he did fight in the Dutch Indonesian Occupation (late 40's/early 50's??). This has scarred him in recent years even though up till about 7 years ago he never talked about his experiences since as he said - they weren't important.

    My father in law has always been a bit of a demanding person but since his health issues began when he was 58 (he is now 83), he started to change. Four years ago he had a bad stroke which seems to have brought everything to a head.
    He is almost deaf, has an extremely bad heart and circulation, cannot walk without a frame, has balance issues and rules the roost.

    Everything and I mean EVERYTHING has to revolve around him. He will NEVER EVER ask about anything or anyone, anytime.

    When we call for a chat or stop by the house (at least once per week to do grocery shopping with them) the only thing we get to hear is how life sucks, how they have to do everything themselves, that everyone treats them like dirt etc. None of this is true.

    Even though there are times that I feel really sorry for him, his bad treatment of almost all the female members of the family including myself have soured me (and a lot of the family) towards them.

    My mother in law bears the brunt of his moods and my heart bleeds for her but she has always been too good a person towards everyone and accepts it all.

    Last October, she fell and had a lower back fracture and a broken wrist. Since then things have become worse because she has been getting more attention he has and he doesn't like it.

    One example from last Saturday.
    He cornered me about the book that he has been given about his condition - after effects of a stroke.

    In this booklet everything is explained about what has happened and he takes every chance he gets to talk about this. We (all his kids and partners) even had to take the book home with us and study it (his orders).

    One thing that came to light in this book (I did read part of it) was indeed the aggressive and demanding behavior that can happen after a stroke (even though he already had this before the stroke).

    However nowhere did it state that it was selective (only the female family members get the tongue lashing). When he asked me whether I had read the book I took a deep breath and very quietly mentioned this to him.

    He said that he never remembers the things that he fights about.
    He then went on say that he had taken issue about some (small) thing that I had said to him a year ago. (I had said to him because he couldn't move well at that time if he would prefer to sit in the front of the car. He said that I shouldn't have done that since I should have known that my mother in law prefers to sit in the front. He has held that against me ever since.)

    They have home health for bathing. They used to have it each day but have cancelled this to once weekly since they say it is a) not needed every day and b) too expensive.
    We can talk to them till we are blue in the face but they will not budge. Firstly they CAN afford it easily (dh has power of attorney and knows the financial situation) and b) we are sure it is needed every day.
    They think that it is a waste of money and it is something that their children can do. I absolutely REFUSE to do this for them.

    For now - I do believe my son regarding the rumors and we have no idea to to handle this situation.

    BTW - they live in a kind of assisted living but never use any of the facilities.
    Avril



    Mom to Laurens (31), Timothy (27), Dimmen (25), Lloyd (24) and Fiori (22).
    Grandma to Charlie, born April 5th 2013.

  3. #33
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    Dutchie.... so sorry. So very very sorry.

    My sis took my folks to doctor today. It went very well. He looked over our concerns before meeting with folks. He told them that they need to relax and let the kids help them out. And he told my Dad that he should NOT be driving. Period.

    Interesting fact: When this doctor was young, he treated my grandparents. Now he treats my parents, and also me and my sisters. Anyway, he told my parents that he watched how they cared for their own parents, and now it is time for them let us take care of them. Very nice!

    We were all a little nervous as to how the visit would go, but my folks seemed quite calm with his advice. They worship that doctor!!!

    We sibs are working out a schedule for visiting, cleaning, etc., so that each of us commits about 4-5 hours a week. I think this will work very well, as we provide assisted living in their own home.
    Spiritual:
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    MY BLOG: glorybug.wordpress.com


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    2. Get some balance in my life.
    3. Lose weight. Hopefully 20# this year.
    4. Continue to be looking for how God wants to use me this year.


  4. #34
    Registered User Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    I'm glad for you, fHg. It sounds like things are coming together in many ways.
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    “Anything you cannot relinquish when it has outlived its usefulness possesses you.” -Mildred Lisette Norman
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  5. #35
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    FHG-glad you were able to get the Dr. involved. I hope things improve greatly for them.

  6. #36
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    I almost didnt read this thread as it is a very painful subject for me . All I can say is HUGGS You really thought I was going to have a nervous breakdown when I was going thru this with my parents I felt like I was standing in quick sand I feel for you more than you will ever know
    Married to Manny 25 years
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    a big bernese mt dog and a fluffy pomerian Loki and Foxy my fur babies

  7. #37
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    That is great news FHG............hope it continues on this track.

    Keep us posted...........AND HANG IN THERE!!!

  8. #38
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    Lora88, quicksand is a good description......
    Spiritual:
    "You are fearfully and wonderfully made." Please... respect life.

    Financial:
    Debt free, hoping to stay that way!


    MY BLOG: glorybug.wordpress.com


    1. Keep on writing.
    2. Get some balance in my life.
    3. Lose weight. Hopefully 20# this year.
    4. Continue to be looking for how God wants to use me this year.


  9. #39
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    This brings back such memories of what we went thru w/my Grandma and I'm sure sadly I'll be headed there with my own parents soon enough.

    Do you think if a shower chair, railing, non slip mat were installed in the bathroom the hygiene issues may disappear? Perhaps they are afraid of falling so they're skipping showers or baths. Or maybe they can't lift their legs high enough to step into the tub so they avoid it?

    Do they take medications? Would one of those planner thingys help where someone puts the pills in for the days of the week so they just have to take them or the ones with the timer on them to remind people to take their pills - I know they sell stuff like that.

    Out here in NH we have a Fall Safety store which has all the gadgets and such to help elderly or disabled persons in their homes - do you have such a store out where you live? You'd be amazed at the helpful gadgets that are out there.

    What about night lites or those lights that you put in an outlet and turn on automatically when it gets dark to light up a room or hallway. Sometimes they might have to get up in the night to use the bathroom and it'd light the way so they don't trip & fall.

    Those long handled grabby things help to pull up socks or reach something on a shelf.

    Are they eligible for the lifeline necklace thing people wear so if they fall they just press a button and help arrives?

    What about getting rid of any throw rugs or taping them down so they don't trip and fall.

    Is their laundry on the 1st floor of the house or down in the cellar. Can someone come over and do the laundry for them on certain days or grocery shop for them. Does your area have home health aids that could do things for them?

    As long as you & your siblings share the responsibility it could work so long as it doesn't all fall on 1 or 2 people. Remember to take time away for yourselves because an exhausted and stressed caregiver is no good to them. Good luck to all of you I hope it extends your parents time in their home.

  10. #40
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    OOOPS, forgot to add that my Grandma NEVER could grasp the understanding of the AC. We'd walk into her house and all the windows/doors would be shut tight and it would be stifling. My uncle bought a brand new AC and several family members tried to explain it, but she couldn't understand such a "machine." She passed at 97 and an AC was just to Foreign to her.

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    dutchie so sorry for u all

    4 his glory this is going better than expected

    we have company now grandmas so who helped take care of her...he talked to me a lot... his words are she eats pills like skittles,is arguementive, forgetful, irresponsible, lazy, and spolied... so I feel better.. she also accuses everyone here on stealing her pills she did the same thing there..even home health got accused...

    all my issues he said that was how she there except for her being bullemic didn't know about that one....ugh.....

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by judembc View Post
    This brings back such memories of what we went thru w/my Grandma and I'm sure sadly I'll be headed there with my own parents soon enough.

    Do you think if a shower chair, railing, non slip mat were installed in the bathroom the hygiene issues may disappear? Perhaps they are afraid of falling so they're skipping showers or baths. Or maybe they can't lift their legs high enough to step into the tub so they avoid it?

    Do they take medications? Would one of those planner thingys help where someone puts the pills in for the days of the week so they just have to take them or the ones with the timer on them to remind people to take their pills - I know they sell stuff like that.

    Out here in NH we have a Fall Safety store which has all the gadgets and such to help elderly or disabled persons in their homes - do you have such a store out where you live? You'd be amazed at the helpful gadgets that are out there.

    What about night lites or those lights that you put in an outlet and turn on automatically when it gets dark to light up a room or hallway. Sometimes they might have to get up in the night to use the bathroom and it'd light the way so they don't trip & fall.

    Those long handled grabby things help to pull up socks or reach something on a shelf.

    Are they eligible for the lifeline necklace thing people wear so if they fall they just press a button and help arrives?

    What about getting rid of any throw rugs or taping them down so they don't trip and fall.

    Is their laundry on the 1st floor of the house or down in the cellar. Can someone come over and do the laundry for them on certain days or grocery shop for them. Does your area have home health aids that could do things for them?

    As long as you & your siblings share the responsibility it could work so long as it doesn't all fall on 1 or 2 people. Remember to take time away for yourselves because an exhausted and stressed caregiver is no good to them. Good luck to all of you I hope it extends your parents time in their home.
    Thanks for taking the time to write all this. They have a shower chair, but it's hard for my dad to get over the tub side to get in. Mom can do it a little easier. They only have one bathroom, and it has a tub with a shower head.

    They do have the pill containers that are marked with days of the week. We got them different colors and sizes and shapes for morning meds and evening meds. But Dad still got it mixed up. Plus, even with that device, they still drop pills on the floor and don't even know it.

    They have a nightlight in the bathroom, which is right next to the bedroom. I think that helps a lot.

    No Lifeline, but they each carry a cell phone. Not quite as efficient as Lifeline, but it's a start.

    We are pulling up the rugs soon, as they are tattered and will trip somebody. They have nice hardwood floors under the rugs.

    Laundry is not in the cellar but it is 3 steps down from the main floor. One sister took the laundry home to do, and we are trying to talk Mom into letting us just do it all the time.

    There are home health aides in the area, but we don't know yet if they are eligible for them. This is on our to-do list.

    You have a great list of items to consider!!
    Spiritual:
    "You are fearfully and wonderfully made." Please... respect life.

    Financial:
    Debt free, hoping to stay that way!


    MY BLOG: glorybug.wordpress.com


    1. Keep on writing.
    2. Get some balance in my life.
    3. Lose weight. Hopefully 20# this year.
    4. Continue to be looking for how God wants to use me this year.


  13. #43
    Registered User annymoll's Avatar
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    It's hard to get old.You cling to a life of frugality, want to maintain your independence and don't want to be a burden to your children. You appear stubborn, willful and obstinate to others as you try to hold on to your privacy and your dignity.It's tough to be graceful when you have an old body that won't move easily and you look in the mirror and see an old person where a young person once stood.
    It's going to be ok FHG.I think your parents will work with you a little at a time.( Be firm on the driving, setting up the meds and proper heating, cooling and nutrition.)I am not going to give you advice.You'll make your way together. Big hugs. I do understand.

  14. #44
    Registered User Dutchie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by judembc View Post
    OOOPS, forgot to add that my Grandma NEVER could grasp the understanding of the AC. We'd walk into her house and all the windows/doors would be shut tight and it would be stifling. My uncle bought a brand new AC and several family members tried to explain it, but she couldn't understand such a "machine." She passed at 97 and an AC was just to Foreign to her.
    I had to have a small laugh at this since it brought back memories of my dh's grandmother.
    She died in 1988 when she was 96.
    When I first came to Holland it was difficult to communicate with her since she didn't speak any English and I couldn't speak any Dutch yet.
    However after I had mastered Dutch we got along really well and I loved sitting next to her and hearing the stories of her life.

    One thing that she told me and what I remember well is that - 'every day I look in the mirror and am surprised at what I see. In my head I am still a young 19 year old girl, but an old lady stares back at me'.

    She always had to get someone of the family in the house to change bulbs in light fixtures just in case the electricity escaped (she didn't understand how it worked).
    She never saw the need for a fridge since a cellar worked just as well and hot running water in the kitchen was unnecessary.
    Avril



    Mom to Laurens (31), Timothy (27), Dimmen (25), Lloyd (24) and Fiori (22).
    Grandma to Charlie, born April 5th 2013.

  15. #45
    Registered User Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    My mom recently installed one of these:
    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wT0P9g6OBbE]Sonaris Bath Lift - YouTube[/ame]
    It makes taking a bath no more dangerous than sitting in a kitchen chair and minimizes the chance of falling.

    Maybe it would help to install a shower head that also has a separate, handheld shower head, if the shower head is too tall for them to sit down and comfortably shower.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    “Anything you cannot relinquish when it has outlived its usefulness possesses you.” -Mildred Lisette Norman
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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