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Worries about mum


My mother is 89 years old and lives alone in Scotland. She was widowed 4 years ago after 65 years marriage. She is in relatively good health and still lives in her own bungalow. She has carers in twice a day but does not allow them to do very much to help her. She has an alcohol problem and as a result frequently falls and lately has begun soiling herself as she does not eat properly. I live 500 miles away so can not visit often. She has said she wants to go into a home but I am worried she will not be happy there. The family home would have to be sold to pay for residential fees and I worry that she might want to change her mind.

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Do what I did with my mother. I put her into respite care 'for a week to sort out your medication'. At the end of the week I said I thought we needed one more week. At the end of that week, she was settled and said there was no sense in going home. We then put the house up for sale. Obviously it takes a while for the sale to go through during which time she was getting used to living in care and by the time the house was sold we were sure it was the right thing for her. If she had been unhappy during that time, we could have changed our minds. She has been there for 3 and a half years now and is content. She does still say sometimes 'I would like to be in my house' but we point out to her how nice it is to have company when she wants it, how much more difficult it would be managing at home now she is older and she settles down again.

Try it, hopefully it will work but the alcohol might be a problem as they wouldn't let her drink all the time in a care home.


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