AGING PARENTS

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Any of you graying ILXors dealing with this? I am the sibling living closest to my 87 year old mother so I spend part of almost every day running errands with or for her and also taking her to doctor appointments. I have to keep track of all her medical issues because she can't remember anything. Not Alzheimer's—just severe short-term memory losses. My sister and I convinced her not to drive, which she resents mightily on account of being in complete denial about all her aging issues (Hearing loss, poor vision, the memory thing, heart condition, late-onset asthma). I'd love to play along with the "I'm fine" delusion, but not if it means letting her drive! I would have to live with the guilt if she hurt someone!
She also insists that she is capable of traveling alone on a bus, and believe me, she is not! I have been to the ER with her too many times for one reason or another. No way am I sending her off on a bus! When she goes to visit relatives we line up a driver, or drive her ourselves.
The whole thing has me mildly depressed.

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Monday, 21 August 2006 17:44 (fourteen years ago) link

Any of you graying ILXors dealing with this?

It's a ways yet for me -- my folks are in their sixties and in good health still. But my dad is starting to slow down a touch -- kinda good that he's retired, officially -- and more than once I've wondered a bit about what the not-so-far-away-now future will mean.

Certainly I salute your patience with this all -- I'm not sure how I would react.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Monday, 21 August 2006 17:52 (fourteen years ago) link

But I'm not patient at all! That's the problem. It's hard to convince myself that her behavior isn't deliberate cussedness, because she has a cussed streak! But her brain is obviously changing.

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Monday, 21 August 2006 17:56 (fourteen years ago) link

Had to deal with this with my mother in law some, recently. Gave me a preview of how it might be with my own parents, and it was absolutely fucking exhausting. She's not intentionally cussed, but stubborn nonetheless.

The patience is key, but it's really hard to keep it up. Can other siblings/capable family members come to visit to spell you for a bit?

patita (patita), Monday, 21 August 2006 18:43 (fourteen years ago) link

Any of you graying ILXors dealing with this?

If by 'graying', you mean 'balding', then yes, to some extent I am such a one.

At the moment the brunt of the responsibility has fallen to an older sister who lives much closer to my 81 year old mother than myself or my other siblings. She takes on the 'dutiful child' role, while the rest of us come in and put in a burst of assistance whenever the tide of troubles rises above a certain level, so my sister doesn't burn out.

My father died two years ago. During his last year and during the year immediately following his death, I drove the 75 mile round trip to see the two of them (later, just my mother) very often. There was so much that needed tending to.

My father, too, suffered from severe short term memory loss toward the end of his life, reducing him to a small shadow of the man he had been - because he became literally unable to encompass any activity that could not be completed within the two minutes or so that he was able to form and hold a single thought. He, too, was inclined to minimize or dismiss the severity of his problems. I finally realized that he understood very well the extent of his diminished capacity, but facing it was too great a threat to his sense of worth and happiness. Denial was how he held depression at bay.

Now that he has passed on, my mother has grasped the nettle of losing her companion and mainstay of 57 years with surprising firmness. I spent 8 months visiting her almost weekly during that transition. It helped a lot, I think, to have family members to talk to and grieve with, and help her form plans and carry them out.

I wish both you and your mother the best, but, as you no doubt know in your bones, even the best possible outcomes available to you and her are still damned difficult to embrace. The cost of love can be pretty steep sometimes, and the bills fall due with increasing frequency at this time. Good luck.

Aimless (Aimless), Monday, 21 August 2006 19:10 (fourteen years ago) link

I'm dealing with this with my grandparents and (sooner or later) my parents.

I just moved all of my (paternal) grandfather's stuff in with his, uh, 'friend' because he couldn't afford his truck payment and townhome rent and medicines and everything else at once. And since he's still part of the family cosntruction business I spend much of my day ensuring that he isn't overworking (or just screwing things up - he gets frustrated easily that his muscles and joints don't work like they used to).

My grandmother (maternal) has Alzheimer's (early-mid stage), and drove me kind of nuts before it was full-blown. Neither of my uncles, none of my ten cousins and my brother don't do shit. Anything not handled by my parents falls directly to me. The extent of the agonies here (some her fault, some not, mostly involving my useless uncles and their brood) is too long to list.

With both I'm always on-call to fix something or help out or figure out why the TV isn't working or why this bill didn't get paid. I can't say no, even when I want to, and the occasional feeling of being put-upon hasn't helped my relationship with my grandmother. (And, theoretically, I'd like to move north when my finances are sorted and my degree is finished - but I can't knowing that I'd leave anyone in the lurch.)

Only 20 years 'til my parents are in their late-70s...

milo z (mlp), Monday, 21 August 2006 19:22 (fourteen years ago) link

Yes, although my particular issues are different. My father has had one major stroke and probably innumerable little ones. The first one forced him to retire. Although, in the grand scale of things, he recovered, he definitely has problems remembering things (e.g., the Rolling Stones came out as "the one with the lips" after about five minutes) and isn't too steady on his feet. He's been in three car accidents in the last two years -- not hurt, but totalled two cars. A certain degree of bad luck, but the end result of it all is that he doesn't really leave the house, so he mostly just lays on the couch, watches television, and is grumpy and depressed. Thankfully, my mother's in pretty good health. But none of us really have any idea how to deal with the situation, and it falls to me to say "no" and/or make any "unpleasant" decisions. Meanwhile the two of them of managed to complete bungle their finances: they are possibly the only household in America who have managed avoid ANY capital appreciation on their real estate over the last 20 years (although they have done a wonderful job accumulating credit card debt). Sigh. I am already worried enough about my own finances, but it has now become apparent that I am unlikely to ever own my own home, as any extra money I have will be needed to keep them afloat.

i'll mitya halfway (mitya), Monday, 21 August 2006 20:17 (fourteen years ago) link

My parents are both in their late 50s, so not really aging as such, though my mother has a sort of rare foot problem, which affects nerve endings in her feet, and the implications of this and the way she has dealt with it thus far have caused considerable strain in the family.

It's a tricky situation as for whatever reason, mostly a weird sort of shame or embarassment, she is loathe to talk about her problems with my Dad or myself, or anyone really, my sister whom she is very close to can sometimes get a little discussion about it.

It's terrible because she grieves for her feet as things worsen, quite slowly, though the condition may one day lead to her being in a wheelchair. She grieves yet she never seems to get past the denial stage, she can't accept or discuss the problem.

So she will often cry kind of uncontrollably, it's awful to hear, but worse is that she won't allow you to help or even talk, my Dad sometimes just says to me "I have no idea what to do", which is also quite weird, it all feels kind of dysfunctional.

So I relate to the "denial" thing you mention Beth, my mother is much younger and this is a problem. I can only imagine what she'd think if she knew I was discussing this on a messageboard...I just wish I had some productive advice rather than just empathy...

Ronan (Ronan), Monday, 21 August 2006 20:31 (fourteen years ago) link

Empathy is just the ticket, thank you all. I don't think there are any easy solutions. People say "you have to hire someone," but that would entail such a huge loss-of-face for my mother. Suddenly she'd be this person for whom people have to be hired. I'd like to put that off as long as I can. Which means extra strain on my nerves, but I have to feel like I'm doing right by her, as long as it doesn't turn me into a total bitch. Which it could do. When I'm the slightest bit sharp with her she'll say "don't get mad at me all the time," which is manipulative crap because I DON'T get mad at her all the time. But she loves the sacharrine niceness of hospital nurses. She wants that from everyone, all the time, and sorry, I just can't do it.
Yikes, Ronan. Your poor mom! But maybe it's good that she's weeping like that. Sounds like a little window of non-denial.

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Monday, 21 August 2006 23:43 (fourteen years ago) link

Argh, that pride and independence is hard to deal with. It had my grandmother living alone until she was 102, and my mother, aunt and uncle running around at her beck and call constantly for 8-10 years before that.

Good luck Beth, and everyone else posting here. I've been really lucky so far, but the day isn't far off -- my mother will be 74 next month and my dad is 77. But my dad, Jesus, he heals quicker than Wolverine. He planted his garden this year, went in for quintuple bypass surgery, and was recovered enough to bring in the harvest himself.

Danny Aioli (Rock Hardy), Monday, 21 August 2006 23:58 (fourteen years ago) link

I've told you before and I'll tell you again, Rock Hardy. You come from excellent stock!

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:04 (fourteen years ago) link

My father's 77, suffers from dementia and psychoses due to alcoholism which the psychiatrists think was in part due to early onset alzheimers as well as his being extremely depressed. He's in a home, a wreck of a man and his family barely talk to him and none of his old friends come near thanks to the treatment he metted out to everyone. My mum watches out for him and takes care of him. It's quite horrible, he doesn't recognise me.
I'm just saying I hope you appreciate good people in ill health as well as good health. It's a massive burden and can be very upsetting. My eldest brother refuses to aknowledge my father's situation in anyway which is horribly awkward because he's the legal next of kin. (Which is another thing to be wary of when you have to take care of your parents, your status in law). Don't be ashamed to look for help if you can. But if you do make sure that they're treated well, homes and nurses aren't necessarily good, abuse of the elderly is more common than is often aknowledged and pretty horrible.
Anyways I hope all your parents always have plenty to smile about whatever their troubles.

Major Alfonso (Major Alfonso), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:14 (fourteen years ago) link

xpost --
I think about death a lot, but haphazardly -- impressionistically, I guess -- because I haven't had to face it up close. I don't really want to live as long as my grandmother. There was a big reunion of my father's clan a couple of years ago and just by chance, a couple of days earlier there had been a story about an 80-year-old guy who played golf with his buddies and had died of a heart attack right after finishing. I was telling one of my aunts about this, and how awesome it was. "That's how I want to go, 80 good years, then lay down for a nap and drift away." My aunt was a bit pissed off at this. "I'm 80 years old, do you think it's time for me to lay down and die?" Holy fuck, ultimate foot in mouth.

Danny Aioli (Rock Hardy), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:17 (fourteen years ago) link

Oops!

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:19 (fourteen years ago) link

I blame my dad's wine.

Danny Aioli (Rock Hardy), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:25 (fourteen years ago) link

If wine was the key to longevity we'd be a family of the undead!
My parents used to get mailings from the Hemlock Society, but when it came right down to it, my father couldn't do it. He had Alzheimers, too, so if there was ever a case for offing yourself... I think in a case like that you just have to pick a day to do it and stick to your plan. My father was a terrible difficult person—I wrote upthread about the difficulty in believing that my mother's dotty behavior isn't deliberate—somehow manipulative. With my father it was the same, if not more so. Even though I knew his brain was being turned into a rotten hunk of plaque I still felt like the resulting behavior was just more of the same shit we'd been putting up with our whole lives.

The child unable to believe that the parent has lost power?

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:31 (fourteen years ago) link

terribLY difficult. Sheesh!

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:34 (fourteen years ago) link

haaa, no, I blame my dad's wine for being thoughtless enough to tell some old people I wanted to die when I got their age. (Which is not exactly what I was saying, but I'm sure it sounded like that.)

Danny Aioli (Rock Hardy), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 00:51 (fourteen years ago) link

Too bad you didn't say quickly enough, "Oh, I figure I'd have to live at least to 90 in order to get in that many good years!"

Aimless (Aimless), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 01:09 (fourteen years ago) link

Good one!

My mother (89) has had alzheimers for about 8 years. Her body has served her well, but her brain slowly went to bits shortly after my stepfather died. Unable to manage her house anymore, my brother and I moved her to an independent living center that guaranteed access to its nursing home if and when the time came. It came about two years after the move. I live 3 hours away, but my brother lives within walking distance and visits her several times a week and we included her in family events until about a year ago when she just became unable to feel comfortable outside of her nursing home environment.

She's now almost totally deaf and has never used a hearing aid which makes any serious communication impossible. I visited last week and found her doing a crossword puzzle. We did the puzzle together for a while, but her mind kept drifting all over the place.

My wife's father (82) has Parkinson's and fell down the stairs recently. Compression fractures of three vertebrae was the diagnosis. Surgeons injected some kind of cement in his spine and he was getting about with a walker after only a few days. My wife plans to care for him in his home in the near future. He suffers from dimentia, too, but is on so many meds that I think that may be a contributing factor. This guy was an infantryman in world war II, a radio and tv personality and has had a very good life. He is loved by many people and has had countless visitors at the hospital. He is very frail now and has told me, and I'm sure others, that he knows his life is at the very end.

These are two of the coolest people that I have ever known, both with precious little time left. One knows it and one doesn't seem to. They are both receiving the best care available, but y'know sometimes that don't mean a thing. My thoughts are with all of you.

jim wentworth (wench), Tuesday, 22 August 2006 01:27 (fourteen years ago) link

five years pass...

This. Heavy shit, huh?

(✿◠‿◠) (ENBB), Monday, 20 August 2012 17:34 (eight years ago) link

yep

curmudgeon, Monday, 20 August 2012 18:31 (eight years ago) link

In darker moments, I look at my folks now (esp. my Pa who is 75 this week) and feel like the wave of their good years is just on the cusp of breaking. Not really ready for it, not at all.

that mustardless plate (Bill A), Monday, 20 August 2012 18:44 (eight years ago) link

My mothers good years are most definitely past. This has become very evident as she's staying with me for a couple days and it's totally heart breaking. Also, there's some memory loss/disorientation stuff happening that's scaring the crap out of me.

(✿◠‿◠) (ENBB), Monday, 20 August 2012 18:54 (eight years ago) link

so heavy i can't really talk about it

these albatrosses have no fear of man (La Lechera), Monday, 20 August 2012 19:00 (eight years ago) link

Yeah. I started trying to talk about it with someone at work and couldn't really hold myself together. This is really tough. :/

(✿◠‿◠) (ENBB), Monday, 20 August 2012 23:12 (eight years ago) link

Good luck Erica... luckily my parents are still mostly 'together' and my dad's problems are a result of his alcoholism rather than real mental deterioration, but it's still awful to have to deal with this stuff.

one dis leads to another (ian), Monday, 20 August 2012 23:31 (eight years ago) link

yeah i'm going through this too. all the best, E x

jed_, Monday, 20 August 2012 23:36 (eight years ago) link

and everyone else :/

jed_, Monday, 20 August 2012 23:36 (eight years ago) link

This took up took up over 10 years of my life (from 1994 - 2008 in fact). Both my parents got ill in their early to mid-seventies, and both had dementia and a pretty terrible end in a nursing home in their late seventies.

I spend most of this period visiting at weekends, and other times - and in that rather mad space where you seem cut off from the concerns of normal life, unable to relax for a minute, and living a kind of nightmare existence that no-one else around you realises. (Nothing like the horrific life of a full-time career - but bad enough).

The only thing you can say about it is that it passes, and you realise that what felt like an endless enduring period was in the end just another temporary era.

Bob Six, Monday, 20 August 2012 23:43 (eight years ago) link

Siblings help -- if you're lucky.

a regina spektor is haunting europe (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 20 August 2012 23:46 (eight years ago) link

I'm an only child. This is the only time I've ever wished I had siblings tbh.

Thanks, guys. Things are OK and we had a really nice evening. She's staying with me until she flys back to FL on Wed. Ian - alcoholism is a factor here too in addition to a lot of other things. I guess I just really feel for my dad and am really saddened by realizing that it's only going to get worse from here and I'm afraid it's going to do so pretty quickly.

(✿◠‿◠) (ENBB), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 00:10 (eight years ago) link

I feel for you, ENBB. I'm an only child too; my mom's 84 this year but still drives, takes care of her own stuff, is still sharp as ever (dad died in 2000). But I dread so deeply the coming of the signs. I can't even model it in my mind. Hugs.

Lewis Apparition (Jon Lewis), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 00:37 (eight years ago) link

my mom's 84 this year but still drives, takes care of her own stuff, is still sharp as ever

That's fantastic, good for her! Mine is 74 this year but she's an old 74 and hasn't driven in at least 5 years. Anyway, like I said, we had a lovely day today. It's just a really difficult process to watch and I worry about what will happen down the line.

(✿◠‿◠) (ENBB), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 00:53 (eight years ago) link

pullin for you E - us only children gotta stick together. this terrifies me too - and is a big part of what motivates me to do what I do now - but hopefully there will be a good, long time before anything really happens.

jack chick-fil-A (dayo), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 00:58 (eight years ago) link

You know you have my support as another only, but I'm too much of a weakling to talk about this stuff
In earnest
In public
Beyond this

But you know where to find me offboard if you wanna talk!!

these albatrosses have no fear of man (La Lechera), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 01:57 (eight years ago) link

i will say that my mom is pretty damn sharp in mind, but whenever i visit, i insist on driving EVERYWHERE. her driving scares the bejesus out of me, don't understand how she hasn't had her license taken away. and it only gets worse as she gets older.

for reasons of sass (the table is the table), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 05:28 (eight years ago) link

yeah driving is often the "tipping point" of aging parents decline. really hard to give up.

my heart goes out to enbb,la lechera, ian and everybody facing this. all my middle-aged friends have ailing/aging parents right now, you guys are confronting it early like i did. these days my father in law is essentially dying, i was going to post this on the fuck cancer thread but it fits here too. he's 84, until a couple years ago was robust mentally and physically, the picture of how you'd hope to age. so it's shocking to see his rapid decline not just bodily but he's become very confused and withdrawn, barely a shell of his former self. chemotherapy is keeping him alive but at what cost? we just had our annual visit and my wife, her mom (who's a rock) and her two siblings are stressed out and struggling. not much else to say. but it's good to talk about it, in fact it's important for your - our - own mental health to let it out.

(REAL NAME) (m coleman), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 09:39 (eight years ago) link

My dad had the driving decision taken out of his hands as he went blind in one eye at the start of the year, but he was getting to be quite a dangerous driver before than (he's 80) so we're really quite glad about it.

ailsa, Tuesday, 21 August 2012 09:54 (eight years ago) link

even though she knows she needs them, my mom refuses to get glasses because she thinks that they make her face look weird
she lives in fear of having her driver's license taken away from her because she is a very independent person and likes her alone time
:(

these albatrosses have no fear of man (La Lechera), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 13:24 (eight years ago) link

My mother-in-law has had quite serious dementia for the past six years or so. This started when she was in her early-to-mid 60s - one of the first events that really got us thinking that something was up was when she drove her car the wrong way round a large roundabout into oncoming traffic. At the moment she lives in a nursing home as is pretty much just a shell of her former self - she doesn't even know who her children are any more when they come to visit, but thankfully she does still appreciate the company which at least is one small positive that you can take away. Totally depressing though, so for anyone out there who is dealing with this right now, I can totally sympathise.

mod night at the oasis (NickB), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 13:35 (eight years ago) link

My mom, turning 80 next month, has been fighting the decline, bless her. Joined the hospital wellness center, has been selling and giving away decades' worth of my dad's accumulated packratcrap, still gets out there and mows her own lawn, etc. Next week she, my daughter and probably my wife are heading off to Biloxi to the casinos. But the decline is there...bad knees, bad feet, diabetes... My sympathies to everyone having a tough go of it these days.

Romney's Kitchen Nightmares (WmC), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 13:45 (eight years ago) link

My mum (68) has been dealing with my gran (88) for a long time; my gran has alzheimers. About six months ago she finally got her moved to a nursing home in the same town (200 miles from where my gran was before). Only now is she at the point where she can see any humour in the situation, which results in Facebook messages like this from my mum:

Today's visit to your gran!

G. (after a bit of mumbling and searching for words) Are you my daughter?

Me. Yes.

Gr. Are you really my daughter?

Me. Yes.

Gr. I can't remember. Am I your mother?

Me. Yes.

Gr. Where did we live?

So I started giving her a potted history of our life.

GR. How do you know you're my daughter?

A bit later on....

Gr, Haven't I got nice legs!

She thought it was quite funny that she couldn't remember things; seemed very happy and settled. The staff bore this out.

Sick Mouthy (Scik Mouthy), Tuesday, 21 August 2012 14:11 (eight years ago) link

three months pass...

My mom and grandma live together with mom's "girlfriend", and I moved to be closer to them and my terminally ill Dad (they were separated). Grandma is sharp as a tack and well into her 90s. Of course I love Grandma, but mom is making seeing Grandma a miserable experience.

Like I said elsewhere she is getting into that old people thing of being passive-aggressive. I know I called her a "fascist" I didn't mean it, it's that her emotional state is kind of fascist.

It's her stupid family. She wasn't raised by her own mother, she was raised by her abusive and creepy grandmother and aunt and it really shows in how she deals with stuff like death and adult responsibilities.

If anything difficult happens in her life - death or whatever - she just escapes mentally. Her mom's family had a lot of money and stuff was handled for her all her life!! She doesn't understand why other people don't have it as easy. Because of her family, she feels she has a lot of power and I can't ever suspect her of having mental problems EVER.

six months pass...

My mom gave up driving last month. Kinda shocked, but pleased that she came to the decision herself. She's 88 and is in reasonably good health for her age - despite the piles of crap that she's hoarded (ongoing issue for her entire life). Sister is gone for several weeks so I'm on mom duty... it's extra frustrating because her hearing is so bad that she leaves the televisions on with the sound maxed-out and she can't hear the phone.

Vexing problem of the moment... Her sense of time and calendar dates are slipping, so making plans becomes a comedy of errors ("stop by this week" *does so* "what are you doing here, I said to come by next week") ad infinitum ad nauseum

Elvis Telecom, Monday, 1 July 2013 23:40 (eight years ago) link

wow, that sounds like a serious challenge. i'm sorry. i have this thread bookmarked and it popped up just as my parents arrived yesterday for their first visit in 3 years. they are aging. my mom is in great shape (in spite of some health issues this year) but my dad keeps looking and acting less like himself, which is thrown into stark relief when we look at old pictures together.

hmph.

free your spirit pig (La Lechera), Tuesday, 2 July 2013 14:15 (eight years ago) link

I am going to visit my parents this weekend and I think that I'm actually going to have to ask them point blank what they want me to do for them if they ever get dementia or need care etc. My mom is in bad shape and her memory is already slipping and my biggest fear is that my dad dies first (though this is prob unlikely you never know) and I'm left to make decisions for/about her. I want to know now and while I know she's not going to want to talk about this I'm going to make them because I'm an only child and they have no other relatives here to help and I can't handle the stress and weight of this alone without knowing what they want.

Airwrecka Bliptrap Blapmantis (ENBB), Tuesday, 2 July 2013 14:19 (eight years ago) link

Just to share my own personal woes on this thread --

My father nearly died last week; he collapsed on his way to the bathroom in the middle of the night. The ambulance came and got him to a hospital and it turned out he had two massive ulcers in his stomach and large intestine. This comes about 6 weeks after a surgery to biopsy a growth in his spinal cord.

Yesterday morning, recovering from the emergency surgery to stitch up the ulcers, he had a major heart attack and is in the hospital with a breathing tube, heavily sedated etc. On our way up to Rhode Island yesterday our van broke down on the Triboro Bridge -- shocks gave out and started to rub against the front tires, causing lots of burnt rubber smoke. We got it towed back to your neighborhood (luckily we weren't halfway through connecticut) and it's going to be repaired this afternoon, $800 later. I'm incredibly worried about my dad. The doctors are not sure how to treat him; they can't give him the usual blood thinners and medications because of the ulcers and recent surgery. I wish so badly I was there. And now I'm worried about the drive up, even though the car is getting fixed, I have a strong distrust of automobiles... Just don't know what to do. It's bad when my aunt is telling me to go straight to the hospital and bring his 'paperwork' (read: living will.)

So scared :\

i guess i'd just rather listen to canned heat? (ian), Tuesday, 2 July 2013 17:06 (eight years ago) link

I'm sorry to hear all of that.

Tottenham Heelspur (in orbit), Tuesday, 2 July 2013 17:37 (eight years ago) link

me too. suerte, ian.

free your spirit pig (La Lechera), Tuesday, 2 July 2013 18:41 (eight years ago) link

best of luck with your FIL, quincie...and thank you again!

"Salvation Army FUCK!" (Neanderthal), Wednesday, 17 March 2021 00:24 (four months ago) link

Ugh, Neanderthal, that sounds really hard. sending good feeling.

it's like edging for your mind (the table is the table), Wednesday, 17 March 2021 17:34 (four months ago) link

thinking about even 2 more months of this is enough for me to pull my hair out. even when COVID's over, I'm going to be afraid to go two inches from the house for ten minutes.

"Salvation Army FUCK!" (Neanderthal), Thursday, 18 March 2021 01:07 (four months ago) link

btw, I'm monopolizing this thread and I know it and I"m sorry so I'm unbookmarking for a bit because at this point it's what it is and I would rather let you all talk about your shit. i'm gonna keep working on the Medicaid application (yay the site is down for maintenance tonight!)

"Salvation Army FUCK!" (Neanderthal), Thursday, 18 March 2021 01:08 (four months ago) link

<3 to all caretakers

"Salvation Army FUCK!" (Neanderthal), Thursday, 18 March 2021 01:09 (four months ago) link

Welp down another aging parent.

Pleased with myself for aggressive advocacy to get FIL out of ICU to have peaceful, comfortable death in hospice.

Another advantage of hospice is that now my MIL will have regular follow up for bereavement support vs nothin' from hospital.

mom tossed in kimchee (quincie), Friday, 19 March 2021 15:22 (four months ago) link

Oh quince. I'm sorry. Good looking out on the advocacy. <3

Ima Gardener (in orbit), Friday, 19 March 2021 15:23 (four months ago) link

Thanks IO, he was 90 and perfectly happy to move on, absolutely hated hospitals so getting him out was a win.

Neanderthal (and anyone else), send me your zip and I can get you connected with free "help" (quality of said help varies tremendously) with Medicaid application.

Maybe I should offer a Zoom on Aging Parents 101? Anyway I have long thought about starting an ILX Pro Bono thread where people can offer up skillz, happy to contribute my strange little set.

mom tossed in kimchee (quincie), Friday, 19 March 2021 15:25 (four months ago) link

I'm so sorry, quincie, but glad that you were able to get him out of the hospital and into a nice hospice unit.

my zip is 32792, and you can send to the email from earlier. thanks! I subbed an app but I guarantee they're going to have a bazillion follow-up questions and that I'll probably have to redo it.

plus side - i learned about every toilet adjustment/pee splash guard known to man today. i don't mind dad peeing on the floor so much, I mind mom screaming when he does it. I found 3 products that should help as I've spotted the 'problem'.

lol @ me being handy-man adjacent now.

"Salvation Army FUCK!" (Neanderthal), Friday, 19 March 2021 18:46 (four months ago) link

i think a zoom 101 would be extremely useful & possibly help with the loneliness of dealing with aging parents esp for only children

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Friday, 19 March 2021 19:15 (four months ago) link

co-sign

"Salvation Army FUCK!" (Neanderthal), Friday, 19 March 2021 19:17 (four months ago) link

Oh yes I work with lots of onlys—that’s a special category for sure!

mom tossed in kimchee (quincie), Friday, 19 March 2021 20:32 (four months ago) link

I would take that course, quincie.

also, sorry to hear, though glad he was able to come to rest in a more comfortable place.

it's like edging for your mind (the table is the table), Friday, 19 March 2021 21:14 (four months ago) link

esp for only children

*raises a paw*

covidsbundlertanze op. 6 (Jon not Jon), Saturday, 20 March 2021 16:59 (four months ago) link

Any advice on helping an elderly parent (in Montgomery County, MD) get an appointment for a COVID vaccination? My mother refuses to get Internet access. According to her the phone system for registration is useless and keeps referring callers to the web site. (When I did my preregistration in DC I had to enter a lot of personal information, and would prefer not to have to do this for my mother.)

If the stories I hear about Maryland are true, appointment slots drop at midnight and/or 6am, and if you don't grab one right then, you're SOL.

Infanta Terrible (j.lu), Thursday, 25 March 2021 13:22 (four months ago) link

Does the county she lives in have an an Office for the Aging or something similar? Mine does and had a phone number to call for older people who had no internet access and needed help getting the vaccine.

Notes on Scampo (tokyo rosemary), Thursday, 25 March 2021 14:18 (four months ago) link

Montgomery County Area Agency on Aging Information & Referral Helpline: 240-777-3000

^^^usually pretty helpful

mom tossed in kimchee (quincie), Thursday, 25 March 2021 15:41 (four months ago) link

This website is laughably designed, but I use it all the time to find Area Agencies on Aging. The Older Americans Act designates one for every area of the country: https://www.n4a.org/

Good to try, but the agencies vary widely in quantity and quality of the services they do or do not offer :(

mom tossed in kimchee (quincie), Thursday, 25 March 2021 15:44 (four months ago) link

My parents are not computer people and I used websites to see where vaccines were being delivered and got them on lots of waiting lists. Eventually one panned out. I put their phone numbers but my email address. This is in Texas, so things might be different where you are. I put them on about ten different lists at pharmacies and clinics.

Cow_Art, Thursday, 25 March 2021 17:30 (four months ago) link

two weeks pass...

So, I've posted elsewhere about my mom (age 69) and her recent diagnosis with brain cancer. She's at my sister's in Philly during the week getting her third of six weeks of 5x/week chemo and radiation, home on the weekends.

My dad (age 69) had prostate surgery Thursday and was supposed to be out the same day but got a pulmonary embolism and he is still in the hospital (and likely another week) with complications.

My wife and I are working remotely from their place over DSL internet, supposed to be caring for my Dad post-surgery, but right now caring for their 4 aging cats.

I was freaking out yesterday when I got bit by a tick and shit got intense with my dad. I think they now have treatment plan straightened out. But man the last 24 hours have been nuts.

guillotines aren't just for royalty anymore (PBKR), Tuesday, 13 April 2021 23:01 (three months ago) link

Yikes. Sending absolute best. My dad had prostate surgery years back -- thankfully nowhere near as fraught a situation as your dad has but it still was a bit uneasy to go through. This, this is a whole other level I can't pretend to have faced.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 13 April 2021 23:17 (three months ago) link

Thank you, Ned. My parents are only 21 years older than me, have always seemed young, and were both in generally good health for their age. This has been an adjustment.

guillotines aren't just for royalty anymore (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 00:39 (three months ago) link

All the best to you and your folks PKBR, and to their respective care teams. I hope the next few weeks are easier all around.

My mom had to move directly to memory care in a different facility from where she had been living with very little notice. Fortunately my brother and sister were able to handle everything and it went fairly smoothly. It's evident now Mom is much further along in memory loss than any of us realized. She remembers nothing of her living situations from the past 6 years, isn't recognizing her collection of DVDs or figure out her TV, can't remember that she has been socializing with people every day. Speech and physical therapy are starting soon.

Step-mom is not wanting to consider not living in her house, is sure it's just a little memory glitch that caused her two broken wrists, is rampant on Facebook with random out of character sentimental memes and jigsaw puzzle apps. But cheerful and okay with not driving.

Jaq, Wednesday, 14 April 2021 03:58 (three months ago) link

Mum doing pretty well with her L-dopa treatment, super happy with the specialist she is seeing for her Parkinsons

assert (MatthewK), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 04:13 (three months ago) link

Thanks, Jaq. Best to you and your family dealing with your mom and step-mom's issues.

Wishing all ilxors strength and wisdom for the years ahead.

guillotines aren't just for royalty anymore (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 12:10 (three months ago) link

My sentiments exactly

it's like edging for your mind (the table is the table), Wednesday, 14 April 2021 23:14 (three months ago) link

things settling down on this front. oh, shit still hits the fan, but we're learning not to treat each instance like a big scary disaster.

i was not home last night, and dad tripped (his cane collided with something) and hit his head, and went to the ER. he's ok.

Medicaid application is underway, we've submitted everything they need, but the wait list is fairly long. we have an interview at the Center for Aging so we can get a waiver form in a few weeks.

P-Zunit (Neanderthal), Sunday, 18 April 2021 20:46 (three months ago) link

Good luck, Neanderthal. I'm almost two weeks into being at my parents and probably two weeks more to go and I'm going a little nutty. You are not just a good poster, but a good son.

Dad came home this afternoon after 10 days in the hospital. He had never been overnight in a hospital. He hugged me and broke down sobbing when he walked in the house!

i bought biden some thin mints with my stimmy (PBKR), Sunday, 18 April 2021 23:00 (three months ago) link

<3

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 19 April 2021 00:35 (three months ago) link

one month passes...

somehow the main thing my mom knows about my life is that i need to renew my driver's license (not a pressing matter, as i don't own a car or otherwise drive)

in the last three months she has emailed me easily 20 times -- once three times in a single evening -- about how i need to get a 'REAL ID' as opposed to a regular license. twice she's mailed me physical clippings out of the newspaper about it. every time we speak on the phone it comes up at least twice, at which point i mention that she's brought it up now dozens of times. 'really?'

i guess it's better than hounding me about getting a job, but it's fucking unsettling

(also she is unknowingly sending all her emails out on her iPhone, through an icloud account she is unaware that she has and never checks, and wonders why people don't respond, but that's another story)

i'm going there next week and can probably fix a few things, but not everything

mookieproof, Thursday, 3 June 2021 23:27 (one month ago) link

Good luck, mookie. Just try to enjoy the time you have to the extent that is an option.

Vin Jawn (PBKR), Thursday, 3 June 2021 23:43 (one month ago) link

well, the larger issue is that i'm a shitty child/person and simply don't want to deal with it

mookieproof, Friday, 4 June 2021 01:29 (one month ago) link

Obv I don't know the details, but not wanting to deal is a pretty normal reaction and doesn't make you a shitty person.

Just tell her you got the new license and it is a real id?

Vin Jawn (PBKR), Friday, 4 June 2021 01:41 (one month ago) link

my mother got bit by my brother's girlfriend's dogs today on her arm. her luck has just been terrible.

in addition to feeling bad for her run of luck, the recurring fear I've had of mom being knocked out of commission due to an injury or something and leaving me the sole caretaker of BOTH of them ran through my head and freaked me out. granted, it's obviously not going to happen due to dog bites, but I'm realizing how precarious a sitch is with my brother basically only helping when I ask him.

Feta Van Cheese (Neanderthal), Friday, 4 June 2021 20:50 (one month ago) link

can you ask more regularly to make it more part of his routine to help? Might be more work short term but helpful longer term?

assert (matttkkkk), Friday, 4 June 2021 23:18 (one month ago) link

I'm gonna have to honestly. But he's working 72 hours next week :/

Feta Van Cheese (Neanderthal), Friday, 4 June 2021 23:36 (one month ago) link

and I hurt my back yesterday. both my mother and I try to spare each other work with nobody wanting to cede lol. but my back is in much better shape than her hands after a dog bite. (she's ok - no stitches, antibiotics, rest)

Feta Van Cheese (Neanderthal), Saturday, 5 June 2021 13:50 (one month ago) link

one month passes...

will be in a permanent state of heightened anxiety until we ever get approved for Medicaid and get waivers for home health services.

ironically, not because things keep happening, but because things have been quiet lately and there've been a few fall "close calls".

mom told me she's depressed. didn't have the heart to tell her that I am too, as she'd feel responsible (but of course that's ridiculous). both of us keep trying to take care of the other's emotional wellbeing.

not up to Aerosmith standards (Neanderthal), Monday, 12 July 2021 20:32 (three weeks ago) link

Hang in there Neanderthal.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Monday, 12 July 2021 22:31 (three weeks ago) link

After 2 months of no incidents, he fell. Mom didn't let me know she was back with him from daycare so I wasn't outside to help. Going to ER

It's been only a year of this and I have little left. The psychological impact of this has me just ready to abandon any optimism I had left. Zero end in sight.

making splashes at Dan Flashes (Neanderthal), Friday, 16 July 2021 20:37 (two weeks ago) link

Just wanted to share this story, and it kinda fits here since Mom is 72, though she's totally independent and requires nothin' from nobody.

So the other day I'm on the phone with her and she says "By the way, tomorrow is [AUNT]'s birthday" and we continue with our conversation.

Here's the thing: [AUNT] is a TWIN.

Mom is ICE COLD when she wants to be.

but also fuck you (unperson), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 00:52 (one week ago) link

Hahaha amazing.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 00:55 (one week ago) link

Your mother's twin or another sibling?

Halfway there but for you, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 01:44 (one week ago) link

Another sibling. Mom was the second born, the twins came after her, then two more sisters she's also not talking to.

but also fuck you (unperson), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 02:06 (one week ago) link

I liked it better as Mom being passive-aggressive about her own birthday.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 02:09 (one week ago) link

love it

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 02:11 (one week ago) link

PBKR's interpretation was what I thought at first.

Halfway there but for you, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 02:12 (one week ago) link

Seemed more Mom-like.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 02:15 (one week ago) link

The 'real' is colder though

Mark G, Thursday, 22 July 2021 15:27 (one week ago) link

Ahhhh... Nothing says summer break like spending the day picking up dried up cat vomit in my mother's squalid apartment.

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Tuesday, 27 July 2021 08:59 (six days ago) link


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