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Elderly parents

The Cockroach Cafe 🪳 Spring 2023

971 replies

MereDintofPandiculation · 02/03/2023 09:21

Welcome! I’ve done a really good clean of the place overnight, and brought in daffodils from the garden to remind us all that spring is around the corner and better times on the way.

Come in when you want to share good news, or to rant, or to ask a small question that doesn't warrant its own thread. Or just to hang out with others who understand what you're going through.

For newbies: why cockroach? Previous long term resident of "Elderly Parents" Yolo's DM attended a 'small animal event' in a nursing home, and was presented with a "small animal with a hard back" the name of which species she couldn't remember. Her ever helpful DB suggested cockroach, and it has become a toast on here. So 🪳 mes amis/amies, and may you all live to fight another day.

OP posts:
RuthTopp · 18/05/2023 18:55

Sorry for your loss.

mirages08 · 18/05/2023 19:10

MereDintofPandiculation · 11/05/2023 08:58

I realise I put off seeing Dad. I set myself a frequency of visits and stick to it, but I don’t go in more often than that. Does anyone look forward to visiting their elder?

My dad is sweet, a lovely man. But not the man I knew. He was always very serious, wouldn’t waste time reading fiction or watching television. But he’s hung on to the television they produced for him to watch the Coronation, and was glued to daytime TV last time I saw him. Not the man I knew at all!

Short answer is no.
Mum and I aren't close. She's got some cognitive decline now too.
Her constant negativity and total lack of any kind of life (her choice) means no one visits her really except me (she's lucky if my siblings visit for 20 mins once a week...) is so very draining.
Got a holiday booked for this summer. First since 2019.
sorry for your loss @thesandwich

BestIsWest · 18/05/2023 19:48

@thesandwich so sorry about your DM. Take care of yourself. Flowers

notaflyingmonkey · 18/05/2023 20:06

Sorry for your loss @thesandwich. Even at that age, and even when it is not unexpected, it is still hard to go through. I'm still processing it all seven months on.

I hope that your health has continued to improve x

notaflyingmonkey · 18/05/2023 20:09

Funnily enough, Welsh poppies are a theme here as well. DF was Welsh, and after he passed away DM planted them in his memory. I was just looking at my back garden and thinking they are getting out of control now, sorry and all that dad!

DahliaMacNamara · 18/05/2023 20:18

So sorry about your mum, @thesandwich
MIL must be secretly reading MN posts, because when we went in tonight she complained that her room was 'too tidy'. Words she has never uttered in her life before, but proof, if it were needed, that nothing makes her happy.

countrygirl99 · 18/05/2023 20:27

Sorry for your loss @thesandwich

Malbecfan · 18/05/2023 20:37

Really sorry for your loss @thesandwich . Glad it was peaceful x

MereDintofPandiculation · 18/05/2023 20:41

Sorry for your loss @thesandwich I'm so sorry, I've only just seen you post.

I've really enjoyed having you around on this board, you're one of the reasons I post.

OP posts:
Mum5net · 18/05/2023 20:49

@thesandwich so sorry to hear about your mum. Look after yourself especially at this time.

thesandwich · 18/05/2023 20:50

Thank you all for your thoughts- very much appreciated.
and @MereDintofPandiculation you’ve brought a tear to my eye! Thank you- I love your insights and wisdom( and humour)
and folks, I’m not going anywhere. Still a lot to go through and value all your wisdom and support and advice navigating the next phase. 🌺🌺

Tupperwarelid · 18/05/2023 20:52

Sorry for your loss @thesandwich .

funnelfan · 18/05/2023 22:58

Condolences @thesandwich , I hope there is some consolation in the peaceful end.

Knotaknitter · 18/05/2023 23:28

@thesandwich I'm glad that you managed to get there at the end because you will have enough emotions on your bingo card without adding "regret" to the list. Take care of yourself especially if you are wearing the administrator/executor hat and dealing with all the sadmin.

EmmaEmerald · 19/05/2023 09:40

thesandwich Big hugs to you, (and thank you for remembering me as I post so rarely now).

Newmum738 · 19/05/2023 12:55

Sorry for your loss @thesandwich

Words · 19/05/2023 14:36

Sending warmest thoughts thesandwich. As you know I have been through this recently so if there is anything I can do to help, please say. Above all, look after yourself. FlowersFlowersFlowers

Lightuptheroom · 19/05/2023 16:13

Firstly, sorry to hear @thesandwich
I could really do with some advice
Mum 81 Dad 86
Dad multiple physical disabilities and medical input from community teams
Mum 81 obvious cognitive decline, massive changes in behaviour, language, attitude, just about everything really and keeps declining further.
Social care assessment resulted in 2 care visits a day, dad assessed as not needing a care package at all.
Re assessment last week due to 2 X safeguarding alerts from community medical teams about mum's presentation/language/way she talks to my dad.
No new needs identified, mum says she's happy with how things are.
GP says mum won't consent to any kind of assessment therefore the obvious decline isn't their problem and she remains undiagnosed.
I contacted the community mental health team to ask advise and got a phone call from the duty social worker asking me to identify what risks I thought there were...
They are shocked she's still driving, how does she remember where she is etc (funny enough I don't know because I'm not a Dr!!)
Do we have to wait for a massive crisis before someone tells us what they can do rather than what they can't?

Mum5net · 19/05/2023 16:45

@Lightuptheroom When things started to deteriorate for my parents they were reported increasingly by other members of the public to the Police and the SW team. This truly escalated the amount of help we got and made them absolute legends in their local social work office.

Lightuptheroom · 19/05/2023 16:51

@Mum5net yep,we've got goodness how many people reporting things but we seem to be stuck in a loop where she doesn't do anything quite 'bad' enough if you see what I mean? Last week she told one GP that he's an fing c and he kills people....his answer was to get a different GP who she likes to ring her!

Mum5net · 19/05/2023 18:39

@Lightuptheroom It can only go in one direction. V soon it will be bad enough. DM told a SW, DF was having sex with teenage boys in a mini parked across the street; she called the Police because she was scared to go downstairs and was thirsty; they were both found wandering on the hard shoulder of the motorway but walking in opposite directions; I could go on. They were both gentle, kind and incredibly polite but every week their social worker had more tales of what they had done .. bogus conmen extorting cash for washing driveway, DF lying in garden for 5 hrs and DM thinking he'd disappeared... I'd start by getting the car off them with indecent haste. We had to do that after the motorway debacle... DF licence was suspended until he resat but he fought DVLA for a year when he failed... it's so v sad.

Juneday · 21/05/2023 09:38

@Lightuptheroom this sounds dreadful, worrying and shocking for your family and others. Re the car, one friend got someone to cut the wires then told her DM that the car needed expensive work and was stuck on the drive. The funny side to this was that her DM due to dementia went out leaving door unlocked and car keys in the hall, an opportunist thief was spotted trying to start the car😮. MiL told DH and I her neighbour was running a brothel and having sex in her front garden at midnight with strange men. She asked if my (84 year old) mother was having her baby soon. She has been put in nursing care on a trial basis - was bed bound following a fall, spilling drinks the Carers left her with, talking rubbish and hallucinating sometimes screaming and worrying the neighbours. God knows if she had been mobile. A neighbours mother was often picked up by police walking around the streets in a flimsy nightdress. Do you have a dementia services team you could try and speak to. I think they usually get in touch after a diagnosis but might offer some advice, likely insist the GP gets a referral organised.

Lightuptheroom · 21/05/2023 09:46

Small update, the GP seems to have arranged a telephone triage. Ironically @Juneday she's just had her car MOT'd, which she managed to arrange herself as they have a garage located about 20 minutes walk from their house. No doubt this will be used to tell us she's fine.
She phoned my sister last night and her opening was that my dad is driving her mad and she wants to wring his neck (not said in a jokey way either)
The problem with telephone triage is that she will mask everything, talk in a very posh voice about how any of her problems are 'just life you know' and direct the conversation onto my dad again.

Mum5net · 21/05/2023 10:05

@Lightuptheroom A pattern emerged for us as problems escalated. Plausible excuses and deflections ultimately aren’t enough and your DM’s frailty will be seen by everyone. It’s so hard for you to knowingly witness the decline when you have flagged it up. You just don’t want her to endanger others. Your parents will be frightened that it is all unravelling but they won’t tell you in those words... My parents covered for each other to resist external help. The resistance to external help burned brighter than them taking advice from their kids. I don’t know if that will
make any sense to you in your situation.

Knotaknitter · 21/05/2023 11:05

@Lightuptheroom MIL also acted the part for medical professionals, even down to the posh voice. She had an investigation for her unexplained weight loss that would have been easily explained had she not lied about what she ate in a week. On one occasion I followed the ambulance following a fall and sat with her in A&E so I was there for her booking interview. I was also visiting at the time when another interview was done on the ward so I was able to add some more substance to her narrative by chiming in with those things that she'd forgotten to mention. Once things had escalated there would have been no way to explain away four falls in a week and you'd expect someone to join the dots on all those blood sugar readings. Maybe not, you need to look back to see the pattern and I'm not sure that the professionals have all the information or the time to do that.

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