New to this and need advice

Hi everyone
I’m so glad to have found somewhere that might be able to help me and my family.
My parents are in their 80’s and have been doing OK. It is important to know from the start that my dad has always been controlling and violent.
My mum has got very early vascular dementia. They are both now rather frail and have had some nasty falls recently. My dad has decided that he can’t look after my mum (who just needs a bit of guidance and reminders). He started messing around with her medication and she ended up nearly dying from dehydration. When she came out of hospital she stayed with my brother and sister in law , who is a carer, for a while. Mum really wants to stay in her bungalow and so, as soon as she was well enough we got her settled back in, with my sister in law being paid to go in daily to care for them both. My dad was not happy that he had to “look after her” and as soon as he knew she was going back started to say how ill he was, after being fine while she was at my brother and sister in law’s. He messed around with her medication again and gave her 3 doses of laxative. The inevitable happened and so my sister in law took her back. She is very sad at my brother and sister in laws and just wants to go back to her bungalow, she has always been a home body and doesn’t even like going on holiday.
Neither need full time care, just some help with basics, which is what my sister in law is doing. My dad is just manipulating the situation in a way that is very dangerous for my mum.
We all feel a bit stuck. Mum is in danger at home but just want to be there, and there is no reason that she shouldn’t be there. I’m sure with all the experience on here someone has come across a similar situation and has some advice.
Thanks for listening.

Hi & welcome Tracey

This is a tricky one as Mum is clearly at risk if she goes home. How can you trust Dad given his previous actions. And the next time could be a unrecoverable situation. It was laxatives but could easily been something even more fatal.

Mum’s vascular dementia will worsen and she will require more help. Given both have already experienced falls. In the future how long before one or both are unable to cope. Perhaps both need their care needs met differently and separately. It’s important to remember no one can be expected to care for someone else. What ever the length and relationship if they don’t want too. If Social Service adult team were involved I am quite sure. Your Mum’s safety would be paramount.

I know as I write this is properly not what you are wanting to hear. But Mum returning home given Dad’s adamant not to be providing care and given the laxative episode. That becomes an adult safe guarding issue. As I don’t know your Dad and you do. Do you think it was a desperate (all be dangerous - laxatives) attempt so the family were listening to his voice.

Did Dad verbalise/recognise what he did was very wrong.

Dementia comes in many forms. Dad is either just plain nasty or not thinking properly. What did he used to be like???

Hello Tracy

Thank you for posting in the Forum about your situation. We were sorry to read that you and your sister-in-law have been having a challenging time with looking after your mum.

In addition to the suggestions from other members, I have also sent you an email with some suggested actions you can take and organisations you could contact for further guidance.

Wishing you well


Thank you so much for the replies, and especially for the helpful email.

I do know really that’s a safeguarding issue. I think I just needed to hear that from someone else. My dad has abused her physically in the past, it was a violent situation with my mum always placating him. He would never admit to doing wrong in any situation.

Thank you sunnydisposition for pointing out that no one should be expected to care for someone else. I hadn’t thought about that aspect. He obviously wants nothing to do with her care.

I will spend some time looking at the help and advice michael.

For now, we have decided to keep her at my sister in laws during the week and at home with dad at the weekends, which he is currently agreeing to. We will remove all medication from the house and only give them what they need for that day. So that my sister in law gets a break, my brothers and I will take over the care at the weekends.

I feel as though you’ve pointed me in the right direction. Thank you.

She is entitled to carers, don’t wear yourselves out. Carers going in to help mum might make him behave better?! Whose house is it? If he is bing abusive then he could be asked to leave his home!!