Mom and her flying purse! #EndALZ.
This Blogger, Richard Kenny, really has a way with words as he describes the challenges – and sometimes the joys – of his caregiving role as a son to his mother who has Alzheimer’s and to his father who struggles to be the spouse of a wife with Alzheimer’s.
Very much worth the read – and I don’t just mean this one article. Many of Richard Kenny’s observations and musings so clearly reflect his day-t0-day frustrations as well as his somewhat new found ability to adapt to every unforeseen circumstance.
I Can’t Win.
For those of you who have not experienced the stresses of caregiving, or being the point-person for a loved one with dementia or other debilitating disease – please read the above-linked article. It will give you a wee taste of:
a) the toll that caregiving takes on loved ones;
b) the toll of being a spouse with someone with dementia; and
c) the extreme frustration of trying to communicate with professionals while coordinating care for your loved one.
Please read this article – it will give you a healthy respect for your coworker, neighbor, family member – who is on duty 24/7 with caregiving tasks. Whether the caregiver is performing these tasks long-distance, as was the case for me in relation to my father’s care, or performing them on-site, the task is monumental and deserves a great amount of respect and understanding.
Posted in 21st Century Living, Alzheimer's/Dementia, Caregiving, Family issues, Personal Struggles
Tagged Alzheimer's disease, Caregiver, caregiver assistance, Caregiver burnout, caregiver stress, caregiving, dementia, respite time for the caregiver
But how am I supposed to do THAT?.
What a terrific article provided in the above link from the “Taking Care of Mom and Dad” blog site. The information provided in this article is valuable, and as Kelli mentioned on her blog, it’s not just specific to the state in which it originated, Oklahoma. The information provided is applicable everywhere because let’s face it – every caregiver pretty much needs the same questions answered and this site has many one-size-fits all solutions for all caregivers who are grasping to stay afloat on their caregiving journey.
This same website can also direct you to your own state’s valuable resources by clicking on the applicable section on the Homepage. It’s as easy as that! And don’t we all need something to be easy every once and awhile?
Posted in 21st Century Living, Alzheimer's/Dementia, Caregiving, Community outreach, Elder Fraud & Abuse, Family issues, Finances, Health & Wellness, Personal Struggles
Tagged caregiver assistance, Caregiver burnout, caregiver resources, caregiver stress
First of all – take a deep breath and shed the mantle of guilt you’re wearing. Now let’s address your dilemma.
When your father was on his deathbed you made a promise to take care of your mother in her old age. Now she is at the point of not being able to care for herself and you realize that you’re absolutely not cut out for – nor are you capable of – taking her under your roof to provide the care that she needs. What’s a dutiful son or daughter to do?
I’m not advocating that you break your promise to your father but I am suggesting that you consider redefining what that promise looks like. You promised your father that you would take care of your mother and that’s exactly what you’re going to do. Taking care of your mother is not solely defined as moving her into your home and taking care of all her basic needs until she dies. Very few people have the ability or the means to provide 24-hour care in their home. You made that promise with the best intentions and you can still honor your promise without dishonoring your father. Keep in mind that loving your mother doesn’t guarantee your success as her caregiver. Even adult children with a fabulous relationship with their parent struggle greatly in their efforts. And if your relationship with your mother is tenuous at best, try picturing the scenario of you as caregiver and her as recipient of that care. What effect will that have on her, you, and the remainder of your household?
Let’s clarify how best to care for your mother.
Why can’t caring for your mother mean that you’re honest enough to admit that you’re not the best caregiving option? Do your best to find the care alternative that will provide her an optimal quality of life, e.g. assisted living housing. Do the research and consult the experts to confidently fulfill your promise to your father by securing the best care solution for your mother. If that solution involves selecting an assisted living facility, there are many resources available to you that can make this move a successful one for everyone involved. As her son or daughter you will be able to lovingly help her transition into a residential location with like-minded older adults where she can receive the care that will fulfill the promise you made to your father.
Now imagine the NEW normal that your mother and your family can experience.
Your mother lives nearby in an assisted living residence. She has companions with whom she enjoys spending time. She receives three wholesome meals a day and when she, or you, feel like seeing each other, you’re just a short drive away! The time she spends at your house will be as a pampered visitor – not an inpatient (or impatient) relative. It’s probably difficult right now for you to see this as a viable option, but I think in time, you’ll find that everyone, including your father, will be pleased with the outcome.
Here are some links to get you started on your quest: www.alz.org; www.caregiver.com; www.ltcombudsman.org
I covet your input. What success, or challenges in achieving success, can you share with us? I look forward to hearing from you.