Not sure where to turn

Hi. My name is Bob, I am 54, and I have just joined Carers UK.

My mother is 82 and my father is 86. They live about 4 hours away from me, and the same distance from my sister.

My mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s a couple of months ago. With hindsight it is clear this has been progressing for quite some time. She is on meds but it seems she has moved into Stage 2 now in terms of behaviour. She is unaware of the diagnosis. She has a heart condition, falls a lot but forgets she has, and insists on drinking on an evening despite warnings not to.

My father is an alcoholic but has never recognised or accepted this. He is almost stone deaf and does not hear my mum falling or what she says. We are sure he has a form of dementia similar to my mum, but he has refused to date to have a memory test or anything else.

They live ina house they can no longer cope in and have a retirement apartment near my sister which they can move to. My father refuses. My mother is desperate to go. We managed to get them there for a short break but twice in the last week my mum has collapsed, probably heart related, and she is in hospital now for a 3rd nigh, and her 2nd visit in a week.

Excuse all the background. As many of you will know, this is the tip of the iceberg!

My sister and I are at a loss. How do we do the right thing here without forcing them into something they won’t like. The only safe option is the retirement place where a care plan can be put in place. My father gets angry and upset and will refuse. He does not have the mental capacity to understand that he cannot loo, after my mum any more and she cannot look after him.

My brother in law became so stressed this weekend with my fathers behaviour that he ended up back in hospital. He had a heart attack a few months ago. My sisters health has been affected. I am somehow managing my depression and am lucky to have v supportive employer and family, but this is not sustainable any more.

Any suggestions or comments would be much appreciated. We feel overwhelmed. Thanks.

Hi Bob & welcome

I not surprised you feel over whelmed!!

There is always a light at the end of the tunnel. It’s just how fast can you get there.

Both your parents need to have a …

Ask the hospital to put in a call to social services. You can also do this as an urgent referral to the adult care team. And/or you can make contact with PALS at the hospital should be able to help.

If you feel your Mother should not be returned home. You need to be very clear with the hospital and Social services. That your Father is unable to manage her needs and no family member live in the area.

All you need to say is …

Both my parents are a danger to themselves due to their current mental state. Make a list/diary/events of what each of them do.
Don’t worry about Father not wanting a test. Just note down his behaviours etc. Be as clear as can in building a picture. It sound like you Mother needs a respite placement. Until the family are able to make suitable future accommodations. You may have to consider them living apart.

Thanks so much. This is so helpful.

The two of them will not be separated even for a few days and dad cannot look after himself.

I will share your advice with my sister.

Really appreciate your time.

Hi,Ian 54, being a career for a long time now(both mother and father should have been in (residential care/home) years ago,mother died 5 years opinion…sounds selfish…passing the buck,best off in care.old people know how to pull at your heart strong mate.ian