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Why am I feeling guilty?
Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 7:35 AM
Joined: 6/3/2012
Posts: 71

So, we know mom needs help..I know deep down Mom needs to go to an ALF.  I just emailed the elder care manager I have been working with that  spoke to the ALF and they have a bed for Mom. She is actually going to the place  today for another reason and will talk to the director about Mom. Once we have a release date from the mental hospital..the ALF will send their nurse to see mom. I got the ball rolling...and I know it is the right thing..Mom is going to flip out...and now I am feeling a bit of guilt for thinking of sending her there.
Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:00 AM
Joined: 4/29/2012
Posts: 775

The title of your post hit me since I've been thinking a lot about all the times I read about guilty feelings on this board.  Guilty for placing a LO.  Guilty for losing patience with LO.  Guilty for no longer wanting to visit a LO.  Guilty for inability to talk with a LO.  It goes on and on.  Why do people feel guilty?  Most of us have no previous experience with AD.  Most of us have no formal training in dealing with AD.  Most of us have never been caregivers before.  We can feel sad and feel depressed, but feeling guilty makes no sense to me.  It's my firm belief mom is 100% better off in a NH in the hands of professionals.  It's the absolute best we can do for her given the situation. Because there is only so much the family can physically and mentally handle, especially since we are not trained professionals in geriatric care and/or the care of someone with AD.  I honestly have no guilt.  I, however, do have a lot of anger.  I hate this d#@^ disease!  I used to fear hearing the dreaded "c" word.  Now I only fear hearing the "a" word.
Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:03 AM
Joined: 1/23/2012
Posts: 2270

If only we could banish guilt from our vocabulary and our lives! It plagues me too and makes me second guess everything I do. Guilt drains us, pains us, and makes us less effective care givers. Why can't we cure guilt???

You are doing what is necessary for your mother; when our children were young and indeed when we were young, parents must do what is necessary, in the best interests of the child. The tables have turned, in a way, and we must do what is necessary, take the safest path, weigh the options and make the choice that is best for our loved one. 

As the song from the Lovin' Spoonful goes:

Did you ever have to make up your mind
Pick up on one and leave the other behind
It's not often easy and not often kind
Did you ever have to make up your mindDid you ever have to finally decide
Say yes to one and let the other one ride
There's so many changes and tears you must hide
Did you ever have to finally decide

Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:25 AM
Joined: 6/3/2012
Posts: 71

Guilt because Mom doesn't want to go. I know 100% she will be in a better plae at a ALF and I know once she gets over her anger of being there she will like it too. When I went for the tour...I could picture my mom there, I know ths is the best for her. It is the guilt of having to force her there... that is bothering me
Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:43 AM
Joined: 4/29/2012
Posts: 775

Your mom has dementia.  She no longer really knows what she wants or what's good for her.  My 6-year-old grandson hates going to the dentist, and hates getting shots.  I feel his anxiety, but my daughter and I would never not do what we know is in his best interest.  Believe me, I know it's hard placing a LO who has no idea what's going on, or why they've been removed from their home.  But we have to be strong and do what's best.
Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:46 AM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 799

Oh boy do I know guilt,  I also placed my mother from hospital to home and I felt horribly guilty.  When my mother was of sound mind she used to say that she would love an ALF because they do so much in those places.  When she got sick, it was a whole other story.  It is very hard for us and we feel guilty.


We need to remember that we are doing this FOR them, not TO them.


The guilt goes away when you realize things are going well.  It doesn't happen overnight, but it happens.


I had to sell my mother's apartment when we placed her.  Talk about guilt!!!!!!!!!!!  But after it was done I didn't feel guilty anymore and was so glad that I did it!


Guilt comes and goes with this disease.  We need to keep reminding ourselves of the positives, not the negatives.

Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:50 AM
Joined: 6/27/2012
Posts: 75

to Grandma G -

This is actually the way I broached the subject to my mom about her condition. I said, "Remember when people used to whisper the word 'cancer' because it was so feared. But now that there are so many treatments for cancer and so many survivors, people don't whisper that word anymore. But there is another diagnosis that people avoid talking about...and I've been avoiding it with you."


She replied, "I know exactly what you're talking about." Then she whispered the word, 'dementia'. 


Because she has a good sense of humor, when we finally got the official diagnosis, I told her I would embroider her a Scarlet 'A' to wear. She laughed, thank goodness. When I realized the official color for Alzheimer's awareness seems to be purple, I told her caregiver maybe I'd have to embroider a purple 'A'.  She suggested I make it Lavender since she's just at the end of the early stages.


Posted: Thursday, June 28, 2012 10:00 AM
Joined: 6/28/2012
Posts: 2

I  feel the guilt too.  My  sibling  is with me emotionally at times,  but at other times, I can't get  hold of him (lives  on other  side of country).  sometimes,  I  feel so alone --  feel like I am neglecting  my own  family.


The doctors  put mom on meds, run test,  etc.  but don't  seem to get involved  in  helping me push  mom to move.