New member

Hi I am Kate in Godalming
I am now caring for elderly parents, 85 and 89.
They live 5 minutes from me. My caring role started when I retired and has increased significantly in the last 3 months months. I am 62. I have help from a sister and a niece but my sister is still working full time and my neice part time, she is also a young mother.
My main points of stress are, getting my parents to their many medical appointments, disabled parking not much help at Royal Surrey hospital as it’s always full. You need two able bodied adults to take dad to any appointment, one to find a wheelchair and wheel him in, another to spend 20 minutes finding a parking space.
Dad is also in denial, too many issues to describe in full, but he has very limited sight, struggles with speech and very limited mobility. I would love to hear from others who have parents who think they are going to get back to where they were 10 years ago, how do you gently get them to work with their disabilities and accept professional advice? I believe this is a common problem.
Kate B

Horrendously common! As you say, they just want to be ‘young and fit’ again. Harder, too, I think, for men to accept they are no longer ‘strong and capable’ alas.

Sorry if this is an unworkable suggestion, but could you get a wheelchair of your own for dad, and then park outside the hospital, even if further away, and wheel him from there into the hospital??

The whole hospital parking situation is an absolute disgrace. When you think that shopping malls have HUGE car parks, and hospitals have tiny ones, blood boils!

Do your parents have outside professional carers come in to help look after them?

If this is something they refuse (also horrendously common), you have to set out the following:

‘Mum/Dad, your choice is NOT having an outside carer OR having me look after you. Your choice is having outside carers AND me looking after you OR you both going into residential care’.

It’s a hard one, but it has to be said, and it has to be done. You CANNOT look after them, solo, until they both eventually die.

Just can’t be done!

Hi Kate
The 'adjustment of elderly minds ’ problem is not easily solved. In my experience it switches at some point from fierce indepence and denial to total dependability and neediness. I’ve no idea what the trigger is, but its very sad to see the total dependability set in. :frowning:

We introduced help in form of gardener and cleaner first, then added in shopper, and meal prepper. At that point Mum chose to go into a Home rather than struggle on alone.

As to transport, there the option of booking hospital transport, which can be very time consuming and doesn’t take carers (in some hospitals, do check locally). Another option is to use a taxi to get there and back. Solves the parking problems, and yes I agree your own wheelchair would be better.

Also check out the appointments booking system which should allow a choice of venues. I often pick one that is 30 miles away but has easy parking rather than the local impossible one. Some tests etc can be done at gp or local centres. For example xrays at our main hospital incur parking problems and charges and a long long wait. Done at local minor injuries unit instead, and I’m done and back home within 30 minutes :slight_smile:

Is Dad and/or Mum claiming Attendance Allowance? . It’s not means tested and can cover quite a few taxi journeys


Definitely use hospital transport. Parents become so self focussed when they are elderly (that’s official!) that they just can’t see what others are doing for them. I could write a book on the subject!! The more you do, the more they want, like a hamster on a wheel.

You need to rethink your role, to be Care Organiser, not provider.
Do they have over £46,000 in savings? (yes/no).
Do you have Power of Attorney sorted for both of them?
Do they own their house?