Re: Caregiver Woes
It is possible you didn't get the right caregivers. Well, caregivers all have problems. Even the best caregiver we had has her own issues but she was good enough for my late FIL.
At least you need to tell the agency that you don't want smoking and young girl... In my experience, young girls in the early 20s are not mature enough to do this kind of work. They sometimes would ignore the bad sign like if your Mom is very sick and they would not know what to do (they may not call 911 early enough.) That was what happened to my late FIL. These 2 girls (somehow the agency allowed 2 - 1 was enough!) failed to be alert when my late FIL was sick with overdose of caumadin, the blood thinner in 2007. The older caregiver came in and saved him.
In the beginning, we tried to save money and hired "any" young nanny but it is not a good idea because dementia is serious.
An experienced older person is better. If this agency cannot find better caregivers, you may want to try some bigger co. with better reputations. (It may be more pricy.)
It is true the caregivers or NH or any other hired help cannot do the same like families. First of all, they don't know the person like the family do and they are objective and have their own style - not your style. I could not make the caregiver cook it my way, but she cooked it her way, for example. Sure we can tell her what kind of food we like or that my late FIL didn't want coke but since it is her caregiving, she got her own style.
The thing is you are not 2 persons so you have to hire someone. You have to be practical and lower some expectation for the good caregivers. But it doesn't mean they can do bad stuff to your Mom. The nanny cam is a good idea. Or you can call from work from time to time. The reality is we all need help. It is important to co-ordinate with the good help. Fire the bad help. If she refuses to call your Mom Mrs. and continues to talk funny after your correction, you may need to find someone who is more mature or experienced/professional.