main
side
curve
  1. In Memory of LAJ_FETT: Please share your remembrances and condolences HERE

JCC Coping with Elderly Parent Issues [Support Thread]

Discussion in 'Community' started by Pensivia, Mar 13, 2021.

  1. Pensivia

    Pensivia Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Thank you @Runjedirun [:D]. From trying to google likely prognoses (while waiting for the additional tests), it seems that the amount of time left after a heart failure diagnosis can vary quite a bit. If I'm understanding what I'm reading, it seems she could possibly have even several years more (best case scenario if it progresses slowly). At the other end of possibilities, a heart failure patient is of course also at significantly increased risk for sudden cardiac arrest that is fatal. Will have to wait and see when we get more info.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2022
  2. TCF-1138

    TCF-1138 Anthology/Fan Films/NSA Mod & Ewok Enthusiast star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Sep 20, 2002
    So, so sorry to hear that. My thoughts are with you and your mother, and I hope the prognosis is as good as it can be under the circumstances.
    It's not something one can ever prepare for.
     
    solojones and Pensivia like this.
  3. Lady_Belligerent

    Lady_Belligerent Queen of the RPF, SWC, C&P, and Pancakes & Waffles star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jan 29, 2008
    Pensivia likes this.
  4. Pensivia

    Pensivia Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Thank you Lady B and TCF :)

    In rereading my initial post, I realize it may have sounded like her passing was imminent. I didn't mean that--I just meant that the heart failure diagnosis adds a "concreteness" in the sense that I feel like now I know what almost certainly will be the cause of her passing. I actually didn't realize before yesterday that "heart failure" can be a relatively slow decline (prior to reading more about it, I thought "heart failure" meant that someone was literally on their deathbed with their heart on the verge of giving out at any moment). It does seem there can be a lot of uncertainty about how long someone can live with "heart failure."
     
  5. Master_Lok

    Master_Lok Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Dec 18, 2012
    [:D]Sending you hugs @Pensivia [:D][:D][:D] I really hope your mom and you will be okay and comfortable in this transition.

    It’s been rough going here, but I am working on being positive and strong and excelling at work, so I can be here for mom.
     
    Pensivia and Sarge like this.
  6. Pensivia

    Pensivia Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Thank you @Master_Lok :)

    Your mom is lucky to have you. I know it continues to be a long caregiving journey for you. Are you in the process of hiring someone to help? I know that must be a big step for you as if understand correctly, you've pretty much been handling it alone until now (?)
     
    Sarge and Rylo Ken like this.
  7. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Sep 9, 2000
    It's hard, @Pensivia. Make sure she is comfortable, spend as much time as you can manage and hope that when the end comes, that it is quick and with no pain.
     
    Sarge likes this.
  8. Obi Anne

    Obi Anne Celebration Mistress of Ceremonies star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 4, 1998
    Time to up this thread, because I need to write things to get it out of my chest.

    tl:dr
    Just when me and my sister were getting my aging mother to accecpt needing more help and finding a system in how we can help her, her little sister (my aunt) gets worse in her dementia and can no longer take care of herself, and we are the closest relatives.

    My mother turns 79 this year, my father passed many years ago. Unfortunately during the last six months she has started to loose her ability to function independently. Her body is consistently aching, she has both spinal, hip and knee operations behind her when she was younger, and she know needs help to walk. In November she fell and got a serious concussion, and after that she also has constant headaches and her memory has gotten worse. Her doctor can't put a diagnosis but considering her family history the doctor thinks it's very early dementian and just in case she will start to eat medicins to hold the dementia from breaking out. The doctor has also forbidden my mother from driving, which is a very hard blow for her. It also means that me and my sisters are heavily involved in helping her. She dosn't want help, but we have gotten her to accept cleaning once every two weeks and yesterday we finsihed remodelling her bathroom to make it more accessible. All nice and dandy.

    Well yesterday me, my mother and my sisters, we are three sisters, got acutely aware of the fact that our aunt (66yo) has taken a turn for the really worse. The aunt has alzheimers since 2021 and from what we have understood she and her husband has managed to hold on and keep up so that their daily life functions. She lives three hours away, and I was there in January and was happy that her apartment looked niced and that she and her husband showed a lot of helpful stuff they had gotten. It was definitely possible to hold coherent conversations with her. Well yesterday my aunt called one of my sisters and was very confused, after a while my sister understood that our uncle was on the floor and couldn't get up. My sister got my aunt to call an ambulance and the uncle was taken away. My sister got so worried that after work she took her daughter and they drove down to my aunt. They were met with a total mess. Unwashed dishes, garbage and paperwork, including bills, all over the floor. No food in the kitchen and my sister was seriously wondering when the aunt had last eaten.

    Current status is that our uncle is in hospital with some kind of infection, he has a son from a previous marriage and that son is in contact with the hospital, my sister has packed our aunt into her car to take her home to my mother, who of course wants to take care of her little sister but is old herself. I've spent the days with social services in my aunt's city and that they need to step in and help my aunt and uncle since they can't take care of themselves. There wll be a meeting on Monday with the social services, my aunt and my sister, who will drive the aunt back. Hopefully they will place her in emergency/short time assisted living and then we can start the proces to move my aunt and uncle here permanently to some kind of care home.
     
    Pensivia, Sarge and Mistress_Renata like this.
  9. SHAD0W-JEDI

    SHAD0W-JEDI Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    May 20, 2002
    I wish I had some profound insight or words of comfort to offer. Life isn't easy, period, but I think that it;s an unfortunate truth that it's a lot harder when you are determined to try to do right by your family and friends - the challenges can be daunting. Truly hope all works out. Will keep you and yours in thoughts and prayers.
     
    Sarge likes this.
  10. CairnsTony

    CairnsTony Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    May 7, 2014
    I'm currently a full-time professional live-in carer for an elderly man here on Scilly. I don't know how much longer I'll be in the job, but suffice it to say, when he goes, I'm out of a job. I'm exhausted every day beyond measure.

    To anyone who is going through those final years, months, weeks, days. You have my empathy.
     
  11. Obi Anne

    Obi Anne Celebration Mistress of Ceremonies star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 4, 1998
    Thanks for the support.

    An update is that the aunt is back in her flat, but social service has been involved and she now gets visits four times a day to make sure that she eats and take care of herself. Her husband is still in hospital, and we don't really know what is going on with his health. It is frustrating to be the ones to care, but not be next of kin so we are not really able to do much. Hopefully it will be possible to start the process of giving my aunt a legal guardian and we can start looking into if it's possible to move both my aunt and uncle to some kind of assisted living in our town.

    My two sisters, who have already fallen out with each other, are of course quarrelling about everything we should/shouldn't do, and we are not impressed by the son of my uncle, who doesn't seem to take much responsibility at all.
     
  12. LAJ_FETT

    LAJ_FETT Tech Admin (2007-2023) - She Held Us Together star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    May 25, 2002
    Glad your aunt is back home.
     
  13. Rylo Ken

    Rylo Ken Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2015
    Having my parents in assisted living near my house really helped me do a better job managing their care. I hope that is possible for your mother/ aunt and uncle. Even when they have a professional caregiver checking in on them often it's so important for them to have an advocate or more than one to make sure they are really getting decent care. I was coordinating between 2 caregivers a hospice nurse and another medicare-paid aid for two parents for a while and they really were not in a good position to manage all that and take in information and make sure they had the supplies they needed etc. If you are willing to take that on for your aunt and uncle that will likely contribute significantly to their quality of life but it is no small ask for a niece to take responsibility for all of it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2023
    Pensivia, Sarge, Master_Lok and 3 others like this.
  14. anakinfansince1983

    anakinfansince1983 Skywalker Saga/LFL/YJCC Manager star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Mar 4, 2011
    My parents are wait-listed for an independent living facility near my sister’s house for that reason. Hopefully they are able to get a spot soon because my Dad is able to do less and less.
     
  15. Master_Lok

    Master_Lok Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Dec 18, 2012
    @Obi Anne & @anakinfansince1983 Sending [:D]

    Still wrangling paperwork so the county locks in mom’s 24/7 care, that way I can work in NYC again (I’m thinking very positive about one academic library position). We lucked out with the home aide agency we have as there are two amazing aides and three very good aides. [:D]
     
  16. Obi Anne

    Obi Anne Celebration Mistress of Ceremonies star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 4, 1998
    Both me and one of my sisters are agreed on that we can't take it on ourselves, and that our first priority is that she needs a legal guardian. Our priority has to be that we have the energy to help our mother, as much as we love our aunt. Thankfully she has some kind of support person through social service, and she had apparently already sent for papers to apply for the guardianship, and she will help my aunt to fill them out. Then it might take some time until she actually gets one, but at least the process has started. That support person talked to one of my sisters also and was helpful in who we should talk to about assisted living and so on.
     
  17. Rylo Ken

    Rylo Ken Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2015
    It’s good to know what your capacity is especially since your mother is more vulnerable now. Seems like you’re doing everything right.
     
    Pensivia likes this.
  18. Pensivia

    Pensivia Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2013
    (Been mostly away from the boards for a couple of weeks so just now catching up with this thread.)

    That is totally understandable. You and your sister have done a great job of addressing the immediate crisis and getting the processes started to ensure that your aunt will get the support needed for the future. It's disappointing and frustrating that your uncle's son doesn't seem to be helping.

    I'm glad to hear you've been able to get your mom to accept more help and were able to make her bathroom more accessible so that she can stay in her own home as long as possible.

    @anakinfansince1983 I hope your parents are able to move into the assisted living place you mentioned soon. I'm sorry to hear your father is declining. How are you and your family holding up during this difficult time?
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2023
  19. anakinfansince1983

    anakinfansince1983 Skywalker Saga/LFL/YJCC Manager star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Mar 4, 2011
    My Mom is struggling the most because she has had to take on almost all household duties whereas they used to split everything, as well as regularly remind my Dad of anything from appointments to how to do basic things. She will not let him drive, use a stove or any yard tools. He can’t really move around well enough for the yard anyway; he has to use a walker if he goes more than 50 feet or so.

    Once they get into this place, it’s a townhome so no yard, and they’ll have housekeeping once a week and transportation to all medical appointments. And my sister and her husband being nearby will help.

    I’m just sad, usually over small stuff like how he used to text me about football and basketball, or the first time I had Covid he texted me a picture of snow in their yard because he knew I loved it—and recently he has forgotten how to use his phone.

    Speaking of football, he had three concussions in high school—that we know of, because in rural North Carolina in the 1960s the response to injury was ‘shake it off’ (one of Dad’s teammates dislocated a shoulder and his coach popped it back in on the field)—not known if that’s the cause of all this or just a factor.
     
    Sarge, Master_Lok, Pensivia and 3 others like this.
  20. Pensivia

    Pensivia Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2013
    I can definitely relate to this in terms of my experience with my mom. It's weird what will "hit" me about her situation at different times. I read somewhere that it's part of the process of "anticipatory grief."
     
  21. Mistress_Renata

    Mistress_Renata Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Sep 9, 2000
    You are on to something about the concussions, @anakinfansince1983. My mother has severe short term memory loss, which is getting worse. There's no history of Alzheimer's or dementia in the family, but nearly 20 years ago she tripped in the garage and fell, smashing her head against the side of the car. She's had a lot of neurological problems ever since then. Professional football is moving away from head on tackles, I heard. Hope the schools are doing the same.
     
  22. Pensivia

    Pensivia Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2013
    I'm glad the 24/7 care plan for your mom is coming together. The paperwork for all this kind of stuff can indeed be daunting (in 2021, I went through the process of getting my mom qualified for Medicaid). Glad you have found a good agency with good caregivers. I know you've been through so much the past couple of years with not only your mom's care, but everything you went through with the attack you suffered and your injuries from that. I'm wishing all the best for you and your mom.
     
  23. Master_Lok

    Master_Lok Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Pensivia thank you so much. It just breaks my heart reading what you, @anakinfansince1983 @Mistress_Renata and so many other members are going through with your parent(s).

    For me, it’s been a lot & lately I am frustrated I cannot do more for mom (I just want her to be okay and out of pain.)

    Dealing with the attack the best way I can, just working to stay positive. It helps us both.


    I have had that happen too. [:D]

    Sending [:D] to everyone.[face_love] You are all amazing.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2023
  24. Luke02

    Luke02 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 19, 2002
    @anakinfansince1983 My parents sold their house a long time ago and went into a townhouse after I moved out years and years ago. Like they sold their house back in 2004 and honestly was one of the best decisions they ever made especially since we got them into another one that is in our neighborhood (which my wife jokes she is like Debra from "Everyone Loves Raymond" as the circus is bascially next door!) that it's smaller but still plenty of room for them and best part is everything they need is on the first floor. My dad still likes into his "man cave" in the basement but being 83 now we are getting worried about him taking the stairs up and down. There is a landing so it breaks up the stairs and he is very careful but still. He can walk around the back as there is a back door that leads into their basement but that gets tricky during the winter and even spring months here. Incredibly the both drive still though very locally as one of the many reasons we push them to buy their current townhome is that down the street from the grocery store and some other stuff like Starbucks which my dad likes going to and having tea while surfing the internet on his laptop while showing the worst typing skills ever.

    The thing about my parents though is that it will be really difficult or downright impossible to get them in assist living. Only one of my grandparents went to a assisted living place and she was 95 when that happened. My parents are going to be stubborn if and when the time comes. Very stubborn. We slowly been trying to have that discussion with them but they get upset. Ironically their end of life wishes, funerals, will (trust) are all set in stone and have been quite awhile other then a couple very small tweaks. But getting them to talk about where they are at now and what will do when they are less self sufficent aka need assistance? Don't want to talk about. My brother and I even tried to frame it as we just want a few options down that we can go use "IF" the time comes. Again don't want to go there. I guess for them it's admitting the end is coming and don't want to think about it which I get but at the same time just having a basic plan in place will make life a lot easier but again they don't want to go there.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2023
    Mistress_Renata likes this.
  25. LAJ_FETT

    LAJ_FETT Tech Admin (2007-2023) - She Held Us Together star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    May 25, 2002
    @Luke02 - What about something like a home elevator to help with access to the 'man cave'? I see ads on UK TV for these a lot. It's not something I'd need in my current home as it is a ground floor flat so I have no idea on prices.

    https://www.stiltzlifts.com/residential-elevator/
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2023