(Quote) Julie-42315 said:
I'm guessing quite a few of us are dealing with this now. My sister said they had a sit down w...
(Quote) Julie-42315 said:
I'm guessing quite a few of us are dealing with this now. My sister said they had a sit down with her mother-in-law who still lives in an old house but wasn't taking care of herself. She was in the hospital again due to dehydration. They told her the house was too much for her (she was trying to avoid taking the stairs to get to the bathroom) so she wasn't drinking enough! They are trying to convince her to take an apartment on the same block where one of her daughters lives. Her adult kids due check on her and help her as much as possible.
My dad is also living in an old house and doesn't want to change/repair anything. We've offered. He's slowing down also but is very stubborn.
Also, we are noticing how some siblings are quick to help while others aren't so eager... (In my own family, the daughers are stepping up while the brothers need to be pushed or told to step in)....
Some solutions depend upon the economic picture. If the elderly parents won't move, a possible solution is to hire a caregiver. Many options are available with that approach -- including working with a service that provides home care, or having relatives spend as much time as possible with them. It would be simpler in the case of your sister's mother-in-law to enter an assisted living facility (or a seniors' complex that offers different levels of care depending upon an individual's needs). Also with her, is there a possibility of doing some renovating to install a bathroom on the main floor? If the men in the family are handy, the cost would be reduced considerably. Dehydration can lead to serious complications, including kidney failure. Past a certain point, it's hard to reverse. An idea that usually isn't too well received is to have another elderly relative move in -- one who is still functioning well.
Or, is any relative able and willing to have her live with them? It's apparent she needs some help, but from what you mentioned, the main risk is due to the bathroom being located on the 2d floorand she is having some difficulty navigating the stairs. Is it possible to have a chairlift installed? That involves the stairway design and a cost factor. Portable commode for her? Obviously someone would need to clean it regularly.
Many people are obstinate when it comes to leaving their homes, and you can hardly blame them. They've probably lived there for years, and the home is like an old friend to them, offering familiarity and comfort. But....when health risks are involved, some steps must be taken.
Your own father? Sounds as if he's doing ok healthwise. Maybe it's best that he just be left alone for the time being. As long as his place is sanitary and he is capable of functioning on his own and meeting his necessities, there is no need to disturb the balance in his life at the present time. Obviously, he should be visited whenever possible to watch for deteriorating conditions that suggest he cannot care for himself any longer.
These are just a few off-the-cuff ideas for starters. Some main themes have been presented; variations are possible depending upon individual needs and circumstances.
What's ironic is that as much as people don't want to leave their happy homes, many of them thrive in a senior's setting. There is the social aspect added to it and that perks up many of our seniors. Some places allow potential residents to spend a few days in a complex so they can get a taste of the lifestyle such arrangements present.
If a relative cannot keep in daily contact with your sister's mother-in-law, is there an organization nearby that offers daily phone call service to check on her well-being? Also, some volunteer organizations have members who do home visits, handle some shopping errands, and transport the person to and from doctors' appointments. These organizations are good places to have available community resources brought forth.
Sometimes getting old just isn't any fun, but life can be made easier.