RSS Feed Print
How much warning do you give LO before moving them out of their home?
Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 9:56 AM
Joined: 11/2/2019
Posts: 5

I have been caring for my grandmother for almost 3 years. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to help her stay in her home, but we are reaching a point where she needs more help than I can give without neglecting my own family.

Our pastor suggested I have her Sunday school class talk with her. My aunt and uncle think the doctor should be the one to tell her it's time.

I understand that her doctors and friends have more experience talking about the transition to a nursing home. But I feel like I should give my grandmother a heads up.
Then again, if there is nothing she can do about it, will I be doing more harm to her mental health by adding to the weeks she has to dread being removed from her house? Or will it be good to give her a chance to give input and say goodbye to her friends and siblings?

Physically she only has 1 or 2 good days per week where she can dress herself and do her own dishes or laundry. Mentally she spends a large portion of the day too tired to think straight. Like if I prompt her to take a shower so we can go somewhere, there's a 70% chance she will forget why she's walking toward the bathroom and go to bed.
Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 10:17 AM
Joined: 10/9/2014
Posts: 1091

It's good to think this through.  It's a personal decision, but, I would read about what others have experienced in making your decision.  

I would first consider that while family and friends, church members, etc. mean well, they may not really understand much about dementia. When they think they can explain something to a PWD, they have this idea that it's the same person that they have known for a long time and that the person has the ability to reason, process information and have recall.  In reality, that may not be true. Depending on what stage your LO is in, she may not be able to process this information.  If she is unable to live in the home due to the progression, would she likely be able to understand the reasons, accept the plan, adjust her expectations, etc.?  My LO struggled greatly, even though, her doctor told her flat out that she had to have AL....she lived alone and there was no other option.  So, how we put it was that she was going to AL for get her meds straight, nutrition on track, physical therapy, etc.  She went along with that.  She was not able to see that she needed AL, even though, she was unable to use a phone, use a remote,  prepare a meal or even a sandwich, bathe, change clothes, pay bills, etc.  I'd just be careful of not expecting her to process and understand concepts that are not within her ability. 

King Boo
Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 10:18 AM
Joined: 1/9/2012
Posts: 3253

You do not.   You think of the kindest, least upsetting way to move her and make it up.

The pipes have burst, MD wants you to get stronger for a bit, I have to go away a while, these ladies are going to help you and me.

No big goodbyes, no dramatic farewells.  She is beyond processing that.

Read up on fiblets.  Truth is beyond cruel to someone who can no longer process and use that information.  It is not longer about what YOU think should be done, it's about what is kindest and helps the PWD.


Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 6:39 PM
Joined: 6/12/2016
Posts: 1043

King Boo nailed it!
Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 6:56 PM
Joined: 8/8/2014
Posts: 885

I moved my DH to a memory care nursing home in April. I did not give him any warning. I would have been able to get him there if I did. On the drive there, I told him I had found a new place for him that had nice people and good activities. (He had  been attending adult day health). We went in, a CNA brought him in to the activity room, and I filled out paperwork. I peeked in on him without him seeing me, and I left. Heartbreaking for me but the only way I could get it done.
MN Chickadee
Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 7:09 PM
Joined: 9/7/2014
Posts: 1040

Listen to King Boo. I would not give her a heads up, nor would I have the pastor or church ladies deliver any news. They mean well, but that does not mean they have any understanding of dementia. You find the therapeutic fib that will work and stick with that. 

If she can forget in the span of 30 seconds  that she was headed for the shower, she is not going to retain any logic that anyone lays out for her regarding needing to move in a few weeks.  Doing so will likely just cause heartbreak at the time that accomplishes nothing. It's going to be a work with the moment at hand kind of move. If the church folks put their "money where their mouth is" so to speak, it will not be goodbye; they will be visiting her in memory care. 

Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 7:33 PM
Joined: 6/20/2016
Posts: 2307

King Boo has the right approach!
Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2019 4:32 AM
Joined: 3/6/2017
Posts: 2217

Team King Boo.

Zip. Zilch. Nada. By the time your LO needs placement, reasoning isn't something her brain can do. 

It is striking how naïve your pastor is on this subject. If your grandmother can't hold onto the thought that she'd headed to a shower rather than bed, how is she supposed to hold onto and process the notion of leaving her home forever?

The people who have her best interests need to make the decision accepting that they will not get the blessing of their LO and then create a scenario under which it will be least painful. 

Other people have created narratives about staying at a "senior apartment/hotel" while work was done on mold, termites or sewer lines. My dad had a sense of something being wrong with him physically, I moved him out of his beloved house (he preferred stuff to people) and into an apartment citing the world class medical care in my community as the reason. When we moved him to a MCF, we explained it as a temporary stay at a fancy rehab center.
× Close Menu