Thankyou for an 'interesting' time(101 Posts)
Just got back from a week away with my DH's Grandfather (85yrs). We invited him on holiday with us because we found out he was going away alone and felt sorry for him. He has family local that don't really bother. We paid for the holiday, drove 300 miles to pick him up, a further 40 miles to the local airport, and the same in reverse to drop him off.
I've had a LOT of stress in my life recently so really needed a nice relaxed week. We picked him up, told him to be ready for a certain time (he lives on his own and is fairly self sufficient) and of course he wasn't ready. He then proceeded to complain about my car 'oh you've got one of those ugly things' Uhh, actually its my pride and joy and we have it because its practical for the dog and family (pick up). He asked for 20kg luggage as struggles with 15kg normally, we got for extra luggage normally so didn't complain. But when DH picked up his suitcase, it was as light as a feather (11kg at check in, when he'd put his thick winter coat in it) Got to the airport eventually, and he expected us to tow his suitcase around, knowing I'm pregnant, and obviously DH cant carry all 3.
He needs a wheelchair to help downstairs, which means we had to cancel the extra legroom seats we had booked due to DH illness, and he was in pain the whole flight because of it. Not GF fault, but annoying non the less, especially when it turned out there weren't any stairs!
DH & I only got 500EUROS out, as GF is normally very generous, and we didn't expect to pay for everything. He didn't stick his hand in his pocket ONCE! Didn't offer, just assumed we would pay the bar bill, buy all outside food, excursions etc.
He had ONE shower the whole week, and it was 20-28 deg all week. DH also had to clean up (TMI, sorry) diarrhoea type poo drops from the bathroom floor, that he had trodden through to the living area TWICE!
We went to a zoo, said its a LONG walk, long day and many hills, why don't we hire you an electric mobility scooter, he laughed it off, and took the piss out of DH for the suggestion. Then proceeded to moan and shuffle the whole way about how far it was.
So, after spending around £1000 on him, when we dropped him off, without an offer of payment for fuel (we didn't expect it by now), and said 'well thanks for an interesting time you 2'. Not a thank you at all!!
So, AIBU to a) never want to see him again (light hearted),
b) try and get his family to encourage him getting some home assistance,
c) to not be expected to pay for EVERYTHING when offering to take someone on holiday,
and d) to be so angry with the whole holiday that I started an AIBU thread
Aww, poor man. This has made me feel quite sad.
In answer to your questions...
a) Oh bless him.
b) Speak to him about home assistance...does he feel he needs any help? Don't speak to relatives without consulting him first. If he's of sound mind he still makes the decisions that affect his own life.
c) Yes, if you offer to take someone on holiday you can't really complain when you have to pay...sorry
d) YANBU there, but I do think you are being a martyr to the whole thing. It was nice of you to take him on holiday with you but you presumably knew taking an 85 year old with mobility issues wouldn't be easy?
I think your expectations were a bit high for a 85 years old.
He's 85! I know you're pregnant but did you seriously expect him to carry his own luggage? Sounds like the whole thing wasn't well thought through, but by you and your DH.
I think your expectations were a bit high for a 85 years old.
How does being 85 years old abscond a person from being polite and paying for their own food and drink on holiday?!
YANBU OP I don't think his age is an excuse my grandad is this age and would never behave like this
Go with b)
Everyone will say you were mean, but I think you just underestimated how much care he needed and how much his mobility would be restricted.
He sounds like he's deteriorated lately, and if he was generous in the past, and wasn't now, isn't it more likely he's cognitively declining or even may have the start of memory problems or dementia, than has suddenly turned into a mean person?
I get your holiday wasn't relaxing, but it was never going to be relaxing, it was a holiday for an 85 year old who needs care/a wheelchair/supervising/can't walk very far.
Lesson learned and yes, he does need more help at home.
This was a lovely thing to do but I think you went into it without really thinking it through. Still, lesson learned.
It does sound as if he does need some home assistance given the bathing problems, but I think you should leave it to his closer relatives to sort out. As for paying for everything, if he's normally very generous then you haven't really lost out, have you?
How does being 85 years old abscond a person from being polite and paying for their own food and drink on holiday?! If he's always been generous in the past, then it's not very likely he suddenly became mean, it's far more likely he's actually not thinking this through at all, as his cognitive ability is declining, which is completely normal at 85!
85 is old old, I noticed a huge difference between my gran at 80 where she was like a decade younger, able to help out and cook meals for the whole family, and 85, where suddenly she became more dependent and needed care and attention herself.
Things like complaining he didn't pull his own suitcase when he needs a wheelchair are beyond ridiculous!
So you invited an 85 year old to come on holiday with you but then were surprised when he couldn't carry his own suitcase and needed help with personal care? Oh dear...
You were clearly well meaning, though. I think his grandson/your DH might look back on this holiday with a lot of affection in the future and be really glad the two of you have him such an 'interesting' experience. Just give yourself a bit of time to recover - and next time take him somewhere in the U.K.
Maybe he wanted to go on holiday by himself? I'm sure you were well meaning but I'd hate someone to invite me just in case they felt sorry for me. I know a man in his 80's who regularly travels abroad alone, he'd hate anyone to pity him for it!
Obviously it doesn't excuse the poor behaviour from him though. I learnt the hard way a couple of years ago not to go on holiday with others, after a few disastrous trips.
He was capable of pulling his own suitcase; but just didn't. He proved that by pulling it on the way back. IMHO, 85 isn't too old to be rude.
He is completely adamant he won't have any help at home. He used to live abroad, and went to visit him when he was there and paid for everything for him as a thank you for letting us stay in his house. The washing thing isn't his age, just a complete lack of self respect (since found out from family that he believes he doesn't need more than 1 shower a week).
We did nothing more than he said he was capable of, though I probably am being more annoyed than normal due to hormones 😂
I don't think being generous in the past (I'm talking months ago) is reason to feel not lost out on things, it's not really about losing things, it's the rudeness that he didn't offer to pay or even a proper thank you that really upset us
(Sorry, didn't mean to drip feed but realise it probably is a drip feed now)
I think you were a bit naive to invite a person of his age on holiday without knowing him well enough to predict his individual level of function.
My GF has dementia and mobility problems tho, so we're well used to treating him like a giant toddler.
Jesus. Yes YABU.
All of these things point toward him starting to fail. He wasnt doing it to piss you off
Why on earth did you invite him? Was it because he's "normally very generous"?
And for what it's worth I would NEVER expect an 85yo to pull their own suitcase, whether they were perfectly capable or not. Where on earth are your manners? Oh, and compassion?
I'm with Pineapple
I bet he really wanted to go away on his own and acted up just to piss you off.
I would have done
Honestly, while I can see it's really unpleasant, the diarrhoea that he didn't clear up and walked in, suggests to me there's something wrong.
Might he be in the early stags of dementia? Sorry to raise that possibility, but a change in personality (you say he is usually very generous) and inconsistency (being able to carry something one day, not the next; asking for extra luggage space then apparently not needing it - did he forget what he'd meant to pack?) sounds like that.
I'm confused to the 'we found out he was going away alone, so invited him on holiday with us' part. Had he already made his own plans and you actually decided to go with him, or did he mention going away and you suggested he comes with you?
Regardless, at 85 I'd have a bit more sympathy for the man on most of your complaints.
"The road to hell is paved with good intentions"
You and DH didn't think it through. If you were under stress and wanting a relaxing time, taking him was a poor decision!
I think it might be absolve not abscond, but that's by the by . It sounds like the OP would have liked to have absconded.
I'd be inclined to consider a short UK break next time, maybe a cottage or hotel with disabled facilities. It's completely unrealistic expecting a holiday with an 85yo in a wheelchair to be without any challenges such as mobility, having to attend to their needs etc. Next time think things through and don't expect so much.
Re paying for everything, you've either got to decide you aren't going to accept any payment or otherwise, you need to mention it at the time you start discussing the holiday and ask, if it cost £xxx, can he contribute to the cost of £xxx. I can't believe the people who don't discuss these important details before making the commitment!
Oh, and further to my post - he might sound quite sharp and with it, even if there is something wrong. We thought for years that my granny was just getting really bad-tempered in her old age, but it wasn't that. Don't assume all dementia-type conditions result in people being gently forgetful.
DH & I only got 500EUROS out, as GF is normally very generous, and we didn't expect to pay for everything.
You must have been gutted, OP. Taking GF with you so that he could foot the bill for your 'nice relaxed week'. You won't make that mistake again will you?
We did nothing more than he said he was capable of that's the problem really, isn't it, he is declining but isn't admitting it to himself or you. He may not have washed that much in the past and it might not have mattered, but now he's less able to deal with the drops/poo and so will smell quickly.
It's pretty undignified to be the one who needs a wheelchair or drips poo. One day we will all be those old ladies and people will probably sigh around us.
I'm not saying he wasn't annoying, he clearly was! It was in hindsight a foolhardy but kind thing to do to take him. But it is what it is and he is clearly declining, you seem a bit in denial about that as well as if he was doing it all on purpose- what's the chances he likes dripping poo about the place?! He's losing his dignity and hoping no-one will notice. You did.
Have another holiday by yourselves this time!
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