Originally Posted by TXwriter
Hi, I'm new to the board, but sadly not new to the disease ... my mom's been declining for 2 years now, and I've finally got clarity about her situation.
This is my plan:
- Explain to her that for my sake, because I am so afraid for her, that I need her to work with me to make this move ... otherwise I will have to stop writing (my day job) and do nothing but look after her. (She will NOT want that.)
- Add that her finances will not stretch to cover her current situation plus the help she needs, but this new facility has a benefit from the VA (all true)
- Explain that we will only take what she absolutely needs since she's been worried about all the clutter in her current apartment -- that it's like a vacation for a month while we clean out what she doesn't need.
That last is only a little true, but I think she will cooperate better if she thinks it's a temporary situation in the beginning. Once she's in and comfortable, and has only the visible touchstones that she loves so much, I hope she will be much better -- not so paralyzed by "too much to do." This is an extremely caring and interactive facility, so she will have constant attention and stimulation.
On the day of the move, we intend to only move her paintings, pictures, bedspread/pillows/sheets, favorite chair, and bedside clock, puzzle book, plus some basic outfits and toiletries. Everything else is superfluous now, and definitely less is more. However, I wonder if we shouldn't take her there to show her the room ahead of time ...? I'm a little torn. I'd almost rather her not visit and decide she hates it before she has a chance to acclimate.
What do you think, folks? Am I on the right track? Your guidance would be much appreciated.
Welcome to the board!
It seems your Mom may be in early/moderate stage of AD (Alzheimer's Disease.) I think you meant well but I need to tell you that some of your ideas (in bold font above) will not work. You still think she has the cognition level to understand whatever you say about the reality: the why you need to move her and the why she needs to save money and the explanations...
The fact is she will not understand your explanation and you will be saying it over and over again. Also, some stuff you don't want to tell her. Don't bug her with her finances. She is incompetent so just keep her finances to yourself. Yes, she will ask for cash but she has no clues about her bank accounts or any income of hers.
It is better to come up with some white lies or excuses to distract her. e.g., my late FIL never understood why he had to go to a nursing home in late moderate stage of AD. He thought he was to come to "work with" my husband while they were not in the same field at all.
You can use some excuses that she likes. Say, the new place has something interesting like hobby or friends and etc. Or say this is a temporary move but she may get to like it.
You cannot explain her finances to her because she will only be confused and upset worrying about being very poor and has no money at all (not realistic but she may think that way due to dementia.)
You can only say you will give her some cash. Sometimes later on you may need to give her fake cash, not real cash in case she would lose it. My late FIL never got any cash in the nursing home in those 2 years, but he got some cash when he was in his own house for 5/6 years.
If you show her the place first, it is OK but she may not remember. One chance is that she may figure out it is another facility and may want to leave and never come back. Just show her the place after she moves, see her everyday for 2 weeks to help her to know the new place and new people. Eat with her in the new place. You don't really tell her it is the nursing home or facility. You can tell her this is her home and her apartment.
I hope this gives you some idea. The thing is if you try to explain the reality, she will come back to ask about it again and again and she won't get it anyway. She is in her own reality.