Update on Mom - may trigger

Avatar for champagneonice
Community Leader
Registered: 11-15-2001
Update on Mom - may trigger
8
Sun, 08-11-2013 - 8:00pm

Okay, for those who don't know the story, my mother has Alzheimer's. Along with her, her son was on her savings account and one day - zip - the money was gone. You guessed it. She had enough to live comfortably and she didn't have life insurance because that's what the savings was supposed to cover when she passed on. She had also given up her home to my brother. My mom was living in filth, with cats and dogs peeing and pooping on the carpet and feral cats doing the same on her huge deck. She threw garbage out on the deck instead of putting it in the trash can and her refrigerator stunk so bad from rotten food. The smell was so rancid that we had to wear face masks. She refused to take showers and claimed that her stove, toaster and oven didn't work. So, she rarely cooked anything to eat. We moved her up near us a year ago (23 miles from where she was previously) and now hubby amd myself have the full duty of taking care of her. The best solution would have been to move her in wwith us, but there is no room. We looked into assisted living, but because she has no assets, they won't accept her. I cook for her and do her laundry and check on her throughout the day.

In just this past year, we can really see the changes from bad to worse. She still recognizes names and faces and that's about it. Her brain no longer tells her to look for something. She has no idea what's in her kitchen cabinets or in her dresser drawers. She tells the same story 4 or 5 times during a conversation and repeats it on a daily basis. For example, she has told me about a dream she had had one night. She tells me the same dream over and over again for weeks on end. She can't remember something after 30 minutes. If she goes somewhere one day, by that evening she can no longer remember it. She complains about everything and has temper tantrums. One day she told us that she was out of toilet paper so I took some over to her. When I went into the bathroom, there was a new package on the toilet tank. When I asked her about it, she replied, "Well, how did that get there?" Then she confessed that she had been using newspaper to wipe with. Another time, I went into her bathroom and I saw Depends hanging on the side of the tub. They looked dirty. She said to me that she had been washing them out and re-using them because it saved money. I'm so tired, both physically and mentally. Not to mention the stress and emotional upset.

Mom had a mild stroke last October, but she came through it at 100%. For which we are very grateful, of course. She was placed in the hospital one other time right after we moved her up here. Apparently there were toxins in her blood and it was making her sick. The doctor told us that it could very well be due to the filthy conditions that she had been living in.

My mother was always an elegant woman. Hair permed, lipstick on, nice clothes, a string of pearls aroung her neck. She was very intelligent and well-to-do. So, seeing her as she is now is so heartbreaking. By the way, my mom is 96 years old.

I'll post more later.... Thanks for reading. And if there are any typos in this post, I don't care. *smile*

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Community Leader
Registered: 07-31-1998
Tue, 08-13-2013 - 8:34pm

Geri,

My heart goes out to you. I am glad I didn't experience this with either of my parents. And I am so glad that your husband is a help in this terrible situation. I still think there is a place where your brother will roast for what he did to his mother. You are being a saint and I hope you understand how much I admire you for trying to make her life as safe as possible om a terrible situation. Hugs to you my dear and a warm cup of tea.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-02-2008
Wed, 08-14-2013 - 8:40am

wow.. I so admire you also and I know how you feel.. Only thing your situation sounds way more challenging than mine..

Let me explain and sorry if I talke about myself here.. I live with my sis and mom.. My mom is 89 and last year went into rehab after Hurricane Sandy and she had a heart episode.. The Nursing home said she was well and not able to stay at the Nursing home anymore.. So she came home this past Monday... She had to get a bunch of handicap things and she cannot take care of herself.. She does have help with a CNA but the burden is still on me and my sister.. My sister is gone for work 11 hours a day and she has a boyfriend.. I am 59 and have no job and doing the best I can.. Only thing is that I want to move and I know its bad but I dont want this job of helping out with my mom.. Been doing it for years and it has created a ton of stress on me for some reason. We are not sure we can even go out anymore and leave mom home alone.......She will have to just stay in bed with a life alert..

I have a social life and who knows now what is going to happen..... Mom will be 90 in Sept..

Anyway;; I feel for you and understand and yes your brother did something disgusting .. There are no words for that...

Okay.. Have you looked into getting care at home for her?? Does she have anything?? Can she get food delivered or any kind of state assistance??

This is very difficult as I go through this journey with you.. The guilt I have is incredible but I really dont feel like giving up my life plus the stress is unbearable..

 

Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998
Fri, 08-16-2013 - 3:02am

I'm so sorry for what both of you are dealing with. Shortly after I read this thread, I heard a piece on NPR about a government program that might have something for you (I hope).

http://www.medicaid.gov/Medicaid-CHIP-Program-Information/By-Topics/Long-Term-Services-and-Support/Balancing/Money-Follows-the-Person.html

Avatar for champagneonice
Community Leader
Registered: 11-15-2001
Sat, 08-17-2013 - 7:50pm

Thank you, Maryfrances, for the hugs and cup of tea! mom made the remark a couple of days ago that she doesn't think she's going to last through the winter. But then she's always saying something to that effect. It's a no win situation, actually. It seems bad to say it, but you know, I have a feeling that we won't "be free" until she's gone. She's 96. She's had a good life. And she's missing my dad something awful. I'd like to see her free of loneliness and her mixed up brain.

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Avatar for champagneonice
Community Leader
Registered: 11-15-2001
Sat, 08-17-2013 - 8:00pm

Thank you for your most kind words! And believe me, I know how you feel. We're not to put our needs ahead of our parents, but gosh, how do we have lives of our own? Hubby  and I have been all through it - buying a larger home so that we have room for Mom - she needs 24 hour care at this stage. But we WANT to stay here. Morally, what shoud we do for her and for ourselves at the same time? There's only 2 of us caring for Mom and frankly, we just don't want to go through this any longer.

I understand the stress you've gone through, also. Ours is over the top. My skin has been breaking out, I'm so tired that I don't get much accomplished at home and I just-don't-care. I take naps every day, which I've never done before. When its my turn to go over and take care of Mom, I don't want to go. Yes, my poor Mom, but what about me? I try to imagine myself in her shoes and would hope that someone would take care of me with respect and love, which is what I TRY to do for her. But I'm weary. I'm impatient. Oh, geez, I could go on and on. Sorry. You take care of yourself, too, my friend.

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Avatar for champagneonice
Community Leader
Registered: 11-15-2001
Sat, 08-17-2013 - 8:07pm

Thank you for the link. I checked it out. We have tried twice to get Medicaid for Mom so that we can put her in assisted living, but she doesn't qualify. Our hands are tied. We'll have the responsibility of her until the end. Its just really hard to witness temper tantrums and hear her words of disgust for me. That doesn't happen often, but enough that I want to shake her. She abused me mentally and physically when I was growing up because she hadn't wanted me. When she's upset with me (usually for no reason), it brings back all that I went through in my childhood. I love her and respect her, but I hate what she puts me through sometimes. Grin and bear it - that's my motto. Undecided

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Avatar for cmkarla
Administrator
Registered: 01-03-2001
Sun, 08-18-2013 - 8:59am

Geri,

I'm so sorry you are going through this. I've been caretaker for years for a family member with dementia so I can understand perfectly everything you have described. It is one of the hardest things I've ever had to deal with as an adult. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Karla
Community ModeratoriVillage.com

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-18-2007
Fri, 08-23-2013 - 9:59pm

Geri, it breaks my heart to hear what you are going through.  I haven't been around for a while so didn't know the latest.  I am glad this is a place where you can pour your heart out.  This is such a sad situation.  

 

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