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Old 03-23-2007, 03:11 PM   #1
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At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

What's up everyone. So, my dad is a strong minded stage 5 82-year-old. I'm 26. I just moved out here 6 months ago to look after him because he's no longer able to. I left my friends, job, everything. Since moving out here I haven't been able to find work because I've been so preoccupied with my dad. I've applied him for veteran's benefits, closed on a house, moved his stuff to new home, moved my stuff into new home (with dad), got him diagnosed, did address changes for both of us, signed him up for auto debit withdrawls for all of his bills, and act as a full time chauffeur. Meanwhile, he doesn't trust me with his money (I know, I know, it's common among alz patients but nevertheless frustrating), is constantly sarcastic and negative, and generally just not fun to be around. I think he'd feel better about the money situation if I had a job, but don't know how to balance my dad with a job.

I looked into assisted living facilities, found one that's nice, brought him there for a tour, and put him on the waiting list. He seemed okay with it (about a month ago) but last time he mentioned it he thought he was going into an assisted living facility because our house was being foreclosed on (????). I want to work and make friends but I've been too busy at home with dad. I want to put him in an assisted living ficility, not only for me, but also so he can make friends and interact with some people instead of being anxious around the house or asking me to drive him places. I don't even know if I'm coming across as being selfish or not. It's hard to step outside the box and analyze a situation that you're an active participant in. Anyways, at what point is it appropriate for someone to move into assisted living?

 
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Old 03-23-2007, 04:38 PM   #2
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

Why not try putting him in adult day care for a while? That would give you free time during the day and more interaction for him.

 
Old 03-23-2007, 05:06 PM   #3
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

Here's my opinion, for whatever it may be worth~

The time has come to put the loved one into assisted living (if he is in stage 5 AD he is too far gone for assisted living) or a good nursing home is quite simple. That time has come when the frustrations of dealing with him are outweighing any benefits he may have from being with 'family' instead of professional caregivers. When the time comes that his caregiver is angry and annoyed at him and actually can't stand living with him any longer (I am not being critical of you, this is exactly what happened to me when I lived with my mother except that I had a full time job as well as all day and all night duty with her) it is time to hand over his care to professionals on 8 hour shifts, always fresh and clear and ready to face their shift with love and patience and understanding. The group activites and supervision of medicine taking, bathing, eating, and help with turning on the TV (my Mom couldn't either) are just side benefits - the main thing is that the person will be safe, clean, not being harassed (as he sees it), not reponsible to remember anything or accomplish anything, and at peace. I highly recommend you get your dad into such a place. It is expensive, but worth it.

Good luck!

Martha

Last edited by Martha H; 03-23-2007 at 05:08 PM.

 
Old 03-23-2007, 06:35 PM   #4
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

I really have no advice for you except that I admire a young man of your age that has taken on such responsibility. Let me tell you, some men twice your age wouldn't know how to cope with what you are dealing with.

Your dad is very luck to have such a caring son, but don't put your own life on hold. See if you can get some other family members involved in decision making if you can. Best of luck!

 
Old 03-24-2007, 06:35 AM   #5
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

Hello UJG. I totally agree with Martha. Even if you were to get your father into an assisted living facility with him at Stage 5, would he be able to stay there long? That would end up meaning another move to a nursing home. That could be very difficult for him to handle. His safety and your peace of mind knowing he is well cared for need to be considered.
Good luck.

 
Old 03-24-2007, 07:58 AM   #6
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

Another vote for Martha's reply. She has covered the situation well however the term Assisted Living facility can mean just about anything. My husband is Stage 6 and is a resident at an ALF that states quite clearly it limits its residents to those suffering from memory related disorders. There is a hospice unit on the grounds so it is a permanent placement. I think the definition of an ALF may differ between states.
It was suggested that your father be placed in a day care situation. I wonder if the facility where you have him on a wait list might not take him for a day placement until a bed opens up. I was able to do this with my husband and it served a double purpose. Gave me breathing time and got him acclimated slowly to the new environment. I told him it was a club and never used the words daycare or Assisted Living Facility.
Bottom line? He would not want you to give up your life to this horrid situation.
Beatrice

 
Old 03-24-2007, 09:35 AM   #7
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

EXCELLENT advice you are getting! Include my vote!

I sure agree you are a very admirable son! My husband and his 2 brothers had no choice but to put both parents into separate facilities a year ago...and their involvement has been very minimal. It makes me sad how differently families "take care" of situations. My Mother has been in a wonderful Alzhiemers facility for 9 years...this was a hard adjustment for all of us, but we never regretted our decision.

I read various posts here that break my heart at the challenges families are having by taking care of their loved ones at home. I honestly do not know how they are doing it...and their dedication is so admirable!! In some cases, it makes me very sad at the struggle some have with making a decision to put their loved one in some sort of facility. It IS a difficult decision! Sometimes the guilt becomes the burden and the positive changes slip into the background. Each of us deal with different challenges daily, and each of our lives are affected a little differently. YOU, my friend, have made some admirable sacrifices to be your Father's caretaker...I wish you peace in making this decision..............Pam

 
Old 03-24-2007, 05:13 PM   #8
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Re: At what point do you put him/her into assisted living?

We have my 87 y/o FIL in a senior Apt. complex. It is a studio apt. just off an inside hallway. He has dementia caused from mini strokes. I feel he is as safe there as anywhere. He has a pull chain for emergencies, he has a gal that cleans his apt once a week and he gets his laundry done. There is also a dining room down the hall where he eats lunch eat day. He is still capable of making himself a sandwich for dinner and can still feed and dress himself. This has been a life saver for us, as the rent is not too high, plus, it's next to the nursing home, if it ever comes to that, so he would be high on the list to get in. This is run by the Methodist Church. Good luck on finding just the right thing. We had to put my Dad in a VA home. It wasn't great, but it was all we could afford and it was a blessing. Keep us posted, C

 
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