Caring for elderly parents; Dad with dementia

Caring for elderly parents; Dad with dementia

This is a great forum and I am starting a thread that may seem to touch many lives and I ask for any godly advise and support as we go through this...

I am a survivor of abuse; my father was very "stern" with me being the eldest daughter and "strong willed" :D and in Aug 2007 my husband and I took in my mom and dad; sold their house (the home I grew up in) and have managed their health care totally since then. They are both 84.

My father was behaving toward my 7 yr old son the way he treated me as a child. This was very triggering to me and much prayer enabled me to get through these times to see clearly and speak with him about his behavior toward our son. He exploded on Wednesday night last week. On Saturday, I took them both to the emergency room for psych evaluations and Dad was diagnosed with dementia and they saw the serious implications of him living with us and the unsafe atmosphere for our son. Dad has been in the hospital since then and yesterday a family meeting was called and they strongly suggested placement in an Alzheimer's facility; thankfully we have a VERY good one very close to us; a few miles away. My older brother and younger sister are very supportive; since neither of them were able or willing to care for them (sister is 30 miles from us and brother lives in NC).

Personally, I am beat. I am angry that I didn't have a "daddy" and that I was put in this position to care for him and then him behave this way and then have to go to live somewhere else. This is really a big deal for me. I look forward to having my home back with just Mom, she is great and a little forgetful at times but nice to have around. She became very stressed and thought she was "losing her mind" with the care and demands that my dad placed on her every minute. Mom has been with us since June 2007 while dad was having surgery and in rehab.

Just rambling but comments, suggestions and prayers are very appreciated. This is a hard time;:( a time when I cry out to God and ask "why"... I will trust Him to get me through this...


Wow that is a hard thing- your son must come first though. You can still visit dad on a regular basis but you do not want him doing any damage to a little one. I pray God grant you wisdom and healing in your heart,
Your brother Larry.
Thank you Brother Larry;
It has been a hard day. I am very sad about the turn of events. My family is all supporting one another and I know that God has given us much peace, wisdom and strength lately; I am very thankful.

Yes, I am relieved that my son will be safe; that my stepdaughter will feel less anxiety as well as my mom who deserves some peace and quiet. My dad thinks that he will be coming home BEFORE he goes to the Alzheimer's facility. He will go there on Monday. I know that it is best for everyone; including him. He will be safer and even happier there. We will be able to visit but I am beginning to realize that things are different and will be very different than before. I appreciate ALL prayers. This is hard for me. :( Thanks!


In truth I can only imagine what you must be feeling- my heart and prayers go out to you and your family. Stay close to the Lord and let Him be your strength.
I understand some of what you are experiencing. The care of an aged parent whether in your home, the hospital, or a care-facility is very stressful and taxing on you physically, emotionally, and spiritually. You will experience various types of anxieties including guilt.

Some of you know that my mother died June 7. She had been in my care (some in my home, some in the hospital, and mostly in an assisted living facility) for 5 1/2 years. She had a very loving, caring personality and was alert until close to the end. However, the questions that arise in the heart and mind of the caregiver are numerous.

You have to recognize what you personally can do and what you can not do. You also have to recognize what toll whatever you do will be on you and your family. You also have to come to grips that this may be a long-term life style for you as you are the caregiver.

Your father needs the help and protection that a good Alzheimer's facility can provide. You and your family need the help and protection that a good Alzheimer's facility can provide. (redundant? no!) You also need to recognize that care in an Alzheimer's facility is quite costly. I don't know if Medicare will help with this or not. Medicare does not help with assisted living. A mid-line cost per month for assisted living is $3,500 at this time. You do the math. Alzheimer's units are sometimes double that.

Rest in the assurance that you are seeking to do the best for all concerned. That you are taking the matter to God for leadership and that you want His will for all. Then rest in the assurance that you are doing the best you can do. Later, you will have haunting questions of guilt over whether or not you did the best for him, for your mother, for your family.

If you have taken this matter to God, sought His leadership and will, and abide by it, you can rest in the assurance that "you did what you had to do."
GrannyG; I am so sorry to hear of your loss with your mother passing. Please accept my heartfelt christian sympathies and prayers.

Thank you for your kind words and confirmation of what we felt led to do; God certainly provided all we needed. Our hearts are saddened but overall we have much peace about it.

The Alzheimers facility (25 patients per unit; 6 units) costs about $200./ day. Medicare will pay for the first 20 days and if he stays long term after that he will be paying out of pocket until monies have run out and then Medicaid is available. (no assets; house was sold in Dec.) Mom is living with us and she receives Soc. Sec and pension and we (hubby and I) both work and the Lord has provided for us all greatly. Going to do banking; talking to an elder care law attorney today for mom and dad (I am POA)and getting some things done before the weekend. Mom is relieved that Dad is out of the home; she has been sleeping undisturbed; less stressed and even laughing. We found that though my dad would wake my mom in the middle of the night to change his ostomy bag; that he changed it himself in the hospital yesterday!!!

Background: As the eldest daughter and a survivor of physical and emotional abuse in my parents home, I was conflicted with having to care for my father in my home and then now to turn around again to allow him to go to a facility because he has behaved with my son as he did with me when I was a child. This is the most conflicting part. If I were angry, vengeful and unforgiving, I would not have been able to take him in our home; I was advised NOT to do so and my husband and I took him in my faith with mom. God knows so much more than we do and got him out of the home before he could hurt anyone; anymore.

I had talked with him several times about "my son/his grandson" and how I would NOT allow him to be treated as he (my father) treated me. I think enough dementia had set in though to where he was unable to really control himself in situations. He admitted that "he couldn't help it; he was out of control" that is when I began to understand that he had been "behaving" the best he could. After an incident over a week ago, I took him to the emergency room at our hospital to be evaluated psychologically and all the confirmation from the doctors and admission by my father have all confirmed what we only feared was happening...I was losing my father to dementia and it was getting worse.

I am not blaming him nor am I angry; I was just hoping and praying that we could have the "father/ daughter" relationship that I did not have with him as a child. He was never affectionate to my siblings or myself or even mom for that matter. It was a few months after he moved in last August where came up to me and thank me for taking care of him and kiss me on the cheek or forehead and hug me and say "Bless you, I love you" :crying_anim: At least I will have some good memories of my father here in our home if not in their home.
My mother in law has recently been diagnoised with Vascular dementia after 18 months of regressive behaviour since the death of her husband.
We are facing the same as you, do we take her in in the next couple of years or do we put her in resedential care?
I have never (until now) had a good relationship with her, she wasnt a good mother or mother in law and cared little for her grandchildren, I never imagined the day coming when she would be dependant on me.]
Realistically though, here in the UK our homes are much smaller than in the US etc, and she is partially incontinent, so it wont be practical, she will have to go into a home.
We will have to sell her house to fund it as that is what the Governments ruling is which means that her kids wont get their inheritance which I think is appalling, but that's how it is here.
I think for you though worshipper you have done the right thing, you cant live with that level of stress and abuse, all you can do is pray that your father will receive Christ and be at peace.
God bless you.
You should come here often when you are stress and write it out to get it out like you've done here.

Through these days your loving Father will be with you to give you all you need to cope,survive and even grow.

Bless you,
Realistically though, here in the UK our homes are much smaller than in the US etc, and she is partially incontinent, so it wont be practical, she will have to go into a home.We will have to sell her house to fund it as that is what the Governments ruling is which means that her kids wont get their inheritance which I think is appalling, but that's how it is here.

I am sorry Jax that you are facing this as well, it is about the same here in the U.S., my family home was miraculously sold (another story) and the monies will go toward his expenses-Your MIL sounds to have need of medical treatment as well due to incontinence. I believe that she will receive more treatment and you will not subject your household to abusive behavior as they tend to get with dementia. Shalom to you.

Thank you Beloved; talking about it does help some. Our Heavenly Father has not abandoned nor forsaken us; He has been gracious and loving. I am at peace with it. Thank you so much.....

Our mother was so concerned about using her savings and value of home for her care and not having anything to leave to her children. We tried to explain repeatedly to her that God had provided those fund for her use and that Dad would be God would also provide for her children's needs.
My wifes dad passed in 95 of pulinary disease. emphisema. C O P D. Lack of oxygen to his brain caused dementia and at times extreem violent behaviour. He lived with us until he passed. It was heard on our whole family as the children ,then teens were living at home. He become obcessed with having her present (in his site)and lost all concsienceness of time for about the last 6 months. My wife got very little rest and no peace as taking care of him was a 24/7 job. I was the only other person he would even allow to do anything for him and i had to work to support the family.
He nearly took my wife to the grave with him.

In 2002 my mother with the same deseases come to live with us. She also become dependant on my wife though not so demanding or violent. After the first year I knew that my wife could not survive this again .The hardest thing I ever had to do was turn my mother over to a healthcare facility. But it was do that or loose both my wife and mother.

If not for our lord in my life I could have not endured.

Draw strength from Christ.

Hisd and yours
GrannyG: that is exactly how I feel...I am blessed to still have them with me even though Dad will be living somewhere else. He and mom are both provided for. The Lord has been good to us.

Cliff: thank you so much for sharing. You have been a good son and son-in-law to do all that you could and BEYOND what you thought you could do to keep your father in law and mother from being cared for in a facility. I am so glad that your dear wife found the relief from caring for her; she should be greatly honored for caring for your mother. My mother took care of her mother-in-law and my mom hopefully will be living with us for the remainder of her life. My mother, age 84, just knew that caring for my dad as much as she did was being very detrimental to her health; she is resting a bit and we are visiting with dad today before he is transported to the facility tomorrow...

I appreciate your prayers and thoughts...even though we may have neverthought that we may find ourselves in the position of caring for our parents in our homes; we have loved our parents and cared for them as the Lord enabled. I am thankful.
Thank You Lord for peace of mind and spirit...and thank you dear ones for your prayers during this time.

Well, I have managed to come out of the anger that I was in and am feeling much better. Dad is safely getting adjusted and we bought him a TV for his room and we haven't heard from him in the past few days. I have made cupcakes and a cake for the 4th of July picnic that they will have tomorrow at Dad's new "home" and we will go briefly to visit.

I have been working through the "daddy" issues and surprisingly enough, my dear hubby says that he has felt the same way with his mother. We are talking about it and I feel much better over my role in all of this...

I appreciate this forum and your input; I am sorry that you have also experienced this or very glad that you haven't (yet).

Love and blessings to you in Christ Jesus
More ramblings of a broken hearted daughter

Well, I saw dad when I took 4th of July cupcakes for him and his "roommates" at the alzheimers facility. Took flowers for the nurses; a patriotic bouquet. He did not ask us how we were or even seemed happy to see us...he even pointedly asked (blamed is more like it) "why couldn't you get me in at another facility" and since they do not take alzhiemers patients; he could not go there. This was the BEST choice for what he needs and I have been hard on myself over this.He complained (and we looked into the complaints that we can do something about) the whole time we were there. I was very saddened to see him not even trying to "make things better" for himself by trying to have a good attitude, etc. It seems like he is not capable of doing it.

I realized that my father is only acting MORE like he has all of his life and I am mourning the loss of a father that I never had.:( I am broken hearted; the anger has turned to sadness and I am learning that what "has been" might not have been at all.:(

I appreciate your prayers...this is another hard thing that has come my way in the past 15 months. The Lord has answered many prayers and been very gracious in providing His grace and mercy in the past months; it is my own "heart work" that I need to continue to work on...:(


:groupray:- still praying. It is amazing how God works on our hearts as we pray to have situations changed- know that in the end He will be glorified in and through you my sister.:)
It reminds me of the saying "Prayer changes ME"...:p :amen:

Going one day at a time; we are all adjusting to Dad not being is calmer and much quieter but I just ache for where he is at and that he
can't live here with us.:( I guess that the Lord has already done a a great work of healing in my heart to think that I would rather have him here than about anywhere else (except with my brother or sister but they did not offer)...

Mom is adjusting well, she is 84 yrs young (6 months older to the day than Dad but doing SO much better). She takes care of herself wonderfully, does her own laundry and even helps with housework (dishes, vacuum and watering plants) to keep herself active.

:pray: praying for Dad's transition and continued wisdom for whatever comes our way....Thanks Brother Bo for the prayers!!!
Thank you all for your prayers

Dad has been moved to a "less severe dementia" unit (entry level); he was in a men only unit due to his aggression toward women and they needed to evaluate him before moving him in with a mixed (men and women) unit. He seems much happier; he asked that we bring his recliner either for his room or the main area. I am glad to hear that he is adjusting better now. I will take his chair to him tomorrow; haven't seen him since the 4th and not looking forward to it but will do my best to put aside any of my feelings and just "go visit" him. :pray: