Return to Article 4 months ago, a fellow commenter said... Im a 46 year old women who has alot of health problems diabetes copd and my Lymphedema. Doesnt work in my legs therefore i have alot of balance issues and cannot walk far and am always in alot of pain im on oxygen at night or if i have problems during the day i suffer from depression and i have no friends up here i also have a bad immune system i make 7oo o month can you help me out 6 months ago, a fellow commenter said... This is why I struggle with the moral dilemma associated with euthanasia. Medical advancements are meant to prolong a quality life not mummify the walking dead, if I can no longer contribute to my surroundings and society please turn me into fertilizer for organic crops and dedicate a clean potable water drinking well in my namesake "please". 6 months ago, Aaron rogers said... I am 37yr old with stage 3 chf, copd, anxiety disorders and depression me and my loved ones relationship has suffered since diagnosis meds r not used proper mail not open I fall am dizzy, don't eat well if at all lost 20 lbs in a month and feel alone afraid and frustrated I think of nursing homes as for elderly I'm on hospice now but I feel the care isn't enough, could I be considered or no my loved one I'm worried about most she's stressed and has hbpthankx aaron 7 months ago, a fellow commenter said... I feel so horrible & guilty like I'm betraying my husband but he's just getting so bad, he's lost over 60 Ibs recently, he's failing to take his dialysis treatment & blood pressure medicine, he's causing me to have several nervous breakdowns, he's just giving up & I made a decision today to sign him in either a supportive living environment or a nursing home I hate nursing homes but if I can get him help maybe it's for the best. He is always sleeping, swollen up, irritable, extremely irritable, even violent when I mention him going to DaVita Dialysis I have to do something he's just wearing me down. if anybody has ever went through this same thing please reply because I feel so bad for doing this. 7 months ago, NanasHouse said... The care of my partner had become too stressful and strenuous due to his drinking and dementia so he is now in an ALF. Now that he's not drinking he's much more functional and wants to return to our home. This has been a repeated pattern and I don't want to do it anymore. 9 months ago, Wired Attiudes,. said... Oh, she is in a wheelchair, and she did it to herself. it explains, why my half brother have become a pain., it was stated that she would move back home, are you kidding,? there is no way to get the wheelchair up the stairs, and very dangerous in the ice and snow, and front door, bathroom is not set up for a wheel chair, etc.. 9 months ago, a fellow commenter said... My Half Brothers Mother is still living, and she is a pain to me, as much as I've tried to be polite, she is never appreciated with my answers, if I called, she doesn't give me 2 minutes. my Half Brothers and their half Sisters tend to not admit, yet, one half brother is in HI, while her parents is getting up in their age as well is still living in AL. Thank goodness, they are fine, meanwhile I've ignore my Half Brothers for going on 5 years. does she even notice or care? obviously, if I do see her, she gives me the business, well, I seen you a few years ago, and wouldn't even make a simple appointment, my life is not in your city, my dog gives me more respect. yes, sometimes, distance family are a pain, but your dog loves and respects. you by thanking you and taking care of him and or her, so meanwhile to be back up, I was on the road and stop by to see her, she was sock, like I invited myself. that was always her back-word attitude, so I saw her a yr. later with other local people for a luncheon, and she was fine, a yr., later, she called and asked if I was coming their this summer, typical last minutes, I said a flat NO, I already have my plans and am going west,. she slam the phone with out reasoning, it came to a point just to avoid her, well, she is 90 this yr. if I don't show up, does she care, obviously not, about 1 year ago, Pam Hallesy said... I need a place for me and 8 cats that are my reason for living. My budget is 753 a month. Please tell me there's options! I'm about to be homeless! I'm 58 and disabled. over 1 year ago, TRNash said... My husband has ADHD and memory disorder plus his own chronic back problems and I am his caregiver until I recently left the hospital due to finding out I now have spinal cord tumor cancer. So this is like the invalid leading the invalid .last night our three thousand dollar sleep number bed leg went through one of the risers we have it on and it really hurt my back. There is nobody but my husband to care for me and that is a joke because he can't even take care of himself . We may have great insurance but we make less than 53,000,00 a year. So anyway I asked him to put a new riser under one of the legs, well I went to check to see if they were on right and found out he missed one. It was completely not even on the riser. We both could have really hurt ourselves and the worst part is he always has something stupid to say to save face. I know I shouldn't ever say this to him but he uses his disease whenever it suits him and the rest of the time he is is in complete denial of his disease. This is just the tip of the iceberg!!! WORRIED over 1 year ago, Patches7623c said... Hello I'm 46 years old with Copd also my daughter has sever lung issues !! She is a very sickly child we are from New York State but the problem she is 17 years old and very allergic to the area!!! over 1 year ago, Caveat said... I'm writing this about myself. I have problems getting food. I once had nothing to eat but boxes of rice. I was recently told that my problems aren't. real. I made them up. This man who said that is the father of my children. He has treated me very badly for 27 years. Calling me lazy. He is in a nursing home. He has diabetes type 2. Didn't test his blood every day. Now he's recovering from a stroke which left him paralyzed. He blames our son and daughter for the stroke, and he blames me. He is so abusive to the nurses where is that those nurses refuse to work with him. I have epilepsy. I don;t drive so my doctor issued me a placard so I can be closer to where I need to be.. My neurologist told me that I have a condition called Ataxia. I have horrible speech problems.. I need to get away from here. Be near the bus line. Read more. Be near a library. Wish somebody could help. over 1 year ago, a fellow commenter said... Thats interesting over 1 year ago, a fellow commenter said... Its interesting :) almost 2 years ago, Howard3 said... I am sure everyone deals with this same situation. My mom 91 has lived alone for almost 30 years since my dad died. She has been fortunate to have 2 of her children and a bunch of grandchildren around for support, because except for family she has turned herself into a recluse. For example she will not go to great-grandchildren's birthdays if non-family members are going to be there. So, if you so much as broach the subject of assisted living you get a series of stories (which we have all heard 100 times) about a friend who moved to one and hated it. She recently woke up at 3:00 a.m. with a "nice looking young man" in here bedroom (you would think that might motivate her to move out.). Fortunately he was a nice young man (he took his shoes off (so he must have had a good mother), and nothing happened. But if this story is brought up as to why she might consider moving, all you get is that she is still very concerned about the "nice young" man. almost 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I've read the statements from the folks who wrote but am Not seeing any responses to any of these situations. Is that in another place? almost 2 years ago, PatWilliams said... My best friend is still caring for her husband who has serious Alzheimer's - he is always lost - cannot dress, bathe, or do any care for himself. He walks in circles from room to room, not knowing where bathroom is or if it's night or day. She has to do EVERYTHING for him, his near vision has been affected by this disease and he has accidents knocking things over - doesn't know how to sit in a chair. She must be at his side every moment unless he's in bed. She has medical issues herself - at the moment, she has the flu (she got it from him) - and she is not getting the rest she needs and cannot care for him. Her doctors have been of no help. They are totally on social security ONLY and we are having difficulty trying to get him onto Medicaid. He was classified as "disabled" due to the disease several years ago and they have no pensions or any other income. She is at her wits' end trying to find help and not getting anywhere. I believe he is way past assisted living, and needs to be in a home with other memory patients. The ONLY good thing is he has lots of moments where he seems to know what's going on - but he cannot sit, pickup items, bathroom himself and doesn't know where anything is. She is perpetually doing everything for him and I hate to say it, her health is suffering from this. I do not want to overstep MY bounds as their friend, but I feel like she needs some relief (even if it's just to have him put into hospice or something until she can get rest and recover from her cold and some other medical issues she's suffering from at the moment.) almost 2 years ago, Joe X said... Hello We (my sister and I) don't know how to handle our parent's situation in the upcoming weeks. My father has Parkinson's and has been barely able to walk for a couple of years. He can use a walker but his steps are really for going to the bathroom and bed. My mother used to be the caregiver up until the last few months. My mother was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer and has all she can do to bear her pain. She is unable to care for my father. My sister took a leave of absence from work but needs to return in 6 weeks. She has been there everyday taking care of our parents. How are we going to take care of my parents? Who will take my mother to her chemo treatments? My sister lives 8 hrs away, I live approx. 90 minutes but have a very demanding job and family (young 9 yr old boy) My parents are 80 and 83. I hate the idea of a senior housing facility and hope we can work out a plan where help can come to my parents? about 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... just joining and all ready I've had a few laughs because I can relate! about 2 years ago, SlipResistantSol said... Thank you for this very detailed list, Paula! There are so many things a child or friend may not catch while observing an elderly loved one's behavior - like checking the mail or plant care - that you've touched upon here. Very insightful. Another thing for caretakers to consider is the safety within the home. From slippery floors and bathtubs to inadequately organized kitchens, the home holds many hazards to the elderly. Keeping safety at the forefront ensures a safer independent experience for elderly, especially in those hours when the assisted living caretaker is not present. about 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... My mother is 90 years old. She fell last week and dislocated her right shoulder and was taken to the hospital by ambulance then discharged to a rehab facility. Her doctor is saying that she will not be able to return to her home where she lives alone and has for over years but will need 24 hour care at an assisted care facility. As the oldest of her five children, we have looking for an appropriate assisted living facility in the southeast area of Columbus, Ohio where Mom currently lives. We have toured several places, but some are extremely higher than we had anticipated. My father was a Navy vet. so we want to know if there is a vet program for the surviving spouse of a Navy Vet that could assist with financially assist us with bare necessities for our mother who is a very quiet, respectful, kind Christian woman who is very satisfied with bare necessities, love and care. over 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... My mother(82) Has, always been a little on the rude side, but now for sometime she (by the day) is getting so mean. That I can't even have a two minute conversation...before she throws me under the bus. Only negativeness, is all she wants to say and if you don't agree with her well alrighty then she will be done with you. Until the next (same way) different day. I am the youngest of 3 girls. My middle sister(60)has been living with her since 1991. omg they put me in the middle of their crap constantly. My mother is basically an addict with a very nice roof over her head! She blackmails sp? with her money. Can not even be trusted with ANY medication, including aspirin. Didn't know one could really overdose on that. Found out after the 3rd or 4th time to the er. by way of 911. She wouldn't wake up is why, they were called. Now she threathens for aspirin and or BC powder along with her painkillers at the same time, every 4 hrs. Says she never sleeps, does until she starts screaming (IT'S TIME)says who would let their mother hurt like this....I mean she gets legally gets these from her doctor because she has had alot of broken bones and such her whole life. Horses. car wrecks ect. But somewhere along the way ADDICT.Does not care about anything but those naughty little pills.I could go on and on. The skinny of it is my sister won't leave, because of guilt and (money)and all my mother says is get out when she really does't mean it. and won't Let strangers in her house. It's like she is alive with no thinking processing. Oh she know who everyone is and just bad mouth everyone so sad. Can't be around that negative talk never ending. but she's got $. disgusting................................. over 2 years ago, michael arnoult said... I have stage 4 cirrhosis and always in pain also have acute pancreatic pain I am on hospice care and medical over 2 years ago, vasinger said... My father just turned 81 years old and he is still in great shape. He doesn't need any assisted living. My mother has been dead for 25 years. I miss her deeply. i don't know how she would be doing now, though. over 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Oh my, what am I doing wrong? My mother will not let home health care in to take care of her in her home. She cancels all her doctor visits, She lies about everything and can come with a lie so quick to cover herself that is not even funny. I am at wits end on what to do. Social worker tells me that she will let me know when she really needs help but she is so selfish that she will never do that. The doctors appointment today was canceled because she called at 11pm last night and said she fell getting out of the shower...that is a lie. I don't know what else to do. over 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... This is very difficult journey for many of us. My mother in law lives close by and we moved here to our state to be closer to us, She has not had a job in 30 years nor driven in the same amount of time. She has a habit of "relocating" to a different adult child's living area when she is bored and depressed or doesn't get her way. We all care for her, but she is like a teenager in that everything is always about her. No one can compete with the amount of things she has that are ailing her, ever... She is in an apartment which we have had to help her with financially because she lives on a very small ss check. She is exrememely lucky to have us help her. She lives a comfortable, life and does not go without. But we could get so frustrated with her because she is so so selfish. People are the same when they get older, often even a more heightened version of their earlier personalities, both positive and negative. So my goal is to try to be a more enlightened person about my self so that as I grow older that I don't become a totally annoying person that my kids have to deal with. over 2 years ago, ashleyreed said... My mother is starting to be forgetful, and I'm worried about her. Her health is still pretty good, although she takes a lot of medication. If I could get her some help, even part time, I would feel better. She just deserves to be taken care of, she took such good care of us her whole life. It's her turn to relax and let us take care of her. over 2 years ago, Lost¬alone said... I love my grandmother. She is a terrific older lady. But she suffers from Alzheimer's. She was told she had it, and decided she was gonna beat it on her own, and didn't need family, or medication. She didn't tell us of her diagnosis. At the time she was living far from any of her family, and on a visit, we realized how bad she had gotten. My parents made the decision she would move in with them. They preceded to take her around and get her properly medicated. And for anyone who thinks that the family doped her up. She thought Obama was her secret lover, and was going to be picking her up in airforce 1. So yes medication is necessary. The point is, my parents love her. And up until February she was living with them. But the point comes when you can't help anymore. Where it's so tiring, so exhausting that you can't help even a loved one out anymore. They hit that line. My grandmother is 71 years old. She was a firecracker in her youth, that needed no one. Now she's a frail, faded child-like version. Which makes me sad to be around. But we still love her, and even if she can't remember us anymore, we remember her. Deciding to put a loved one in assisted living, is sometimes necessary. My parents were at the end of what they could do for her. They had nothing left to give, before they decided to place her. My parents go to a support group to talk about her, and the struggles and strain that helping her, cause.So my best advice, find people who can relate to you, through your church, or through support centers. And if you are a caregiver, take time out for you. My parents go on date night once a week. My mom, who was never a girly-girl gets her nails done every couple of weeks with my grandmother. They go to see her everyday. Life happens. and as horrible as it may sound, sometimes, you have to let your loved ones go, to be able to keep loving them. over 2 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I am at my wits end with my mom and ANY good info I can get helps. almost 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... It's definitely difficult to know when you need to make sure that you're loved ones get help. These tips could definitely help make the process easier, but it's not a guarantee at all. I think it's important to keep in touch with people who may need this kind of help. Getting professional opinions can also help a lot. I know that if a doctor told me to put my grandpa in assisted living, I would do everything I could to make sure he gets helped. almost 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... This has been a great discussion post. There are so many variables that what is right for one elderly person may not be the best solution for the next person. Also, clearly it makes a difference whether the person is 70 or is 100, can walk or not, or has dementia or not. I was told my parents, both 90 years old, would be better off living in their own home and not some assisted living place. Made perfect sense...until it came down time to "who" was going to be the caregiver. I, being the only son in California was elected by default into the position along with my little daughter. I love my parents, but bottom line, it has been nothing short of grueling and has taken its toll on "our" health more than theirs. The stress, putting our lives on hold, their ingratitude, all of it. My father eventually was admitted to a nursing home due to our inability to overcome mobility problems and deal with late stages of Alzheimer's Disease and related dementia. He "is" where he needs to be and is getting the right help there, so we visit him regularly. My mother because of finances and insurance issues remains with us at home. I have now come full circle and believe we all need to write a new chapter in our lives. We're doing her a great disservice to continue this living arrangement. Yes, she has a reverse mortgage, so rent is free, though that means nothing considering none of us want to be here anymore. Being happy, at least content is vital to everyone. There is absolutely not a shred of doubt in my mind that she will thrive in assisted living, with the interaction of other seniors, scheduled group and senior activities, and a caring knowledgeable staff. They are better equipped to handle the progression of old age. I guess growing old is all a process. For us, it is about taking an honest inventory of where we are at and what is the best for the entire family...coming to terms with what what is working and what is not. There is much to overcome for the elderly...I had no idea! Right now, mom has no hearing aids and everyone tells me," Quit screaming at your mother so much!" I feel like telling them, "What are you stupid, can't you see that I have to yell, if I don't she won't hear me!" lol almost 3 years ago, Kathleen M said... I have Hepatitis C,irregular heartbeat, Atrial Fibulation,anemia,diabetes, foot drop,anxieties and depression at times.Including all the signs of Extreme liver disease.Confusion,forgetting at times to take my medications,forgetting things on the stove,losing things because I cannot remember where I put them,or put them down and walk off without it. To put it lightly is a joke.I have no family or friends to help me,I have been on my own most of my life and now I am terrified of what is coming. I have a primary care doctor but am not allowed to see her until Feb.23.My health is failing fast,but I cannot seem to get it through to the managed care group that I need to be under a doctors care immediately. I can barely walk anymore and need a wheelchair and be living in W/C accessible housing. I can no longer manage on my own and I am the first to admit it. almost 3 years ago, angelosdaughter said... Yup, those nursing home ads make the facility look so attractive. Spend some time there. My husband had to be in one to get rehab after a hospitalization . It was very highly rated. When I came to see him, he was lying flat on his back, staring at the ceiling. His TV was off; his call button was clipped to the wall out of his reach (intentionally, I'm sure). there was neither a nurse or aide to be seen. The only thing I can say is that he and the place were clean. He was there a couple of days before he had to be returned to the hospital because he had pulled out his NG tube. I refused to have him returned to that nursing home. I had to borrow the money because the rehab hospital where he would actually get rehab. wanted the money up front. He was there a month and came home able to do for himself. If the time ever comes that he can't, we have a problem, because I have arthritis in both knees and my back, and have to take care of all of the bills, his meds, whatever housekeeping I am able to do, the shopping for food and necessities, and it's getting harder to walk. We have no support system. There is no money for a nursing home or in home care, besides which, out of the three I went through with my father, only one was good: the last one, and even there, I think the care was so good because I was there every night after work, and I was vocal about any concerns. I think the care in any nursing home is only as good as the family's oversight of it, so don't think you can place your loved one and walk away feeling secure that they are in good hands. You have to BE there a lot. So, here we are. I often wish I had never married. It's hard enough dealing with one's own aging, and no matter how much you love each other, sooner or later, you will be alone. Better to get used to it early. almost 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Just a note of caution to those contacting a Caring volunteer to talk about options for a loved one. I made the mistake of calling from the home of my sister-in-law and giving that number where I could be reached while we were visiting her in CA (we live in CO) not realizing it would be shared. The person with whom I spoke was very helpful and we discussed options, but I did not realize that the phone number would be put into a "system". Already, this morning (Mon.), I've intercepted at least 5 calls from very professional and understanding placement people. Had my sister-in-law answered the phone, however, the situation could have become very difficult for us in that we are only in the first stages of addressing the issue of "moving" and she would not understand why she is getting these calls. Although I am asked for by name, I worry that when we leave, the calls may continue. The article, however, is excellent and helped us not only recognize that each of the 11 symptoms are present in our situation, but that we are not alone! Thus my initial call for help. I'm saddened when reading responses from both caregivers and those in need who take offense or express indignant anger due to their own denial of reality, from those wishing that circumstances were identical to those they reacall when "they were young", or from who are offended that the traditions of every society are not addressed by its author. I'm impressed by the acceptance of the negativity directed toward those involved with Caring.com who are able to continue their volunteer efforts so graciously in spite of such negativity in order to assist those of us who appreciate their knowledge and need their compassion and understanding for a myriad of circumstances and situations. You are truly earning your "wings"! almost 3 years ago, careaboutmom said... Great article! Very comprehensive and gives you lots to think about. about 3 years ago, gowithflo said... this is a good post but i have already taken my sister 72 and her man 71 out of their apt for all the reason you stated and moved them in the me a yr and 1/2 ago ,they both have dementia/ alzheimers ,i quit my job to care from them so they dont go in a assistent /or a care facility -im still looking in to getting paid for their care to suppliment the income i loss -all i get is one person telliing me to all another and the run around is very frusterating ---- about 3 years ago, lhoover847 said... If a busy body family member thinks an elder needs to head for Assisted living conditions the subjected should be talked out with the subject can help decide their own fate. about 3 years ago, The Peddler said... Either these signs are very realistic or you have been observing my spouse for some time. In home care is expensive, Assisted living? Ever had an elderly person say they look forward to making that step? Of course not but the brochures and advertising that the care giver gets appear to show life as quite happy. Initial reject signal when evaluating a home, the faint smell of urine... Leave immediately, that is the old age equivalent of "seeing one cockroach in broad daylight" about 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... After 4 years of sorting out my parent's life, and loosing 1 parent, I could write a book. Navigating through all of it is frustrating, sad, and eye-opening. There are days you'll laugh, days you'll cry, and days you'll be amazed at how wonderful and helpful some strangers and caregivers can be. The biggest obstacle is your own denial because you don't want to see your parents loose their independence, get old, sick, and die. Forget about your own "comfort" level, and what you're "supposed to do" as a child of an aging parent, and look at the reality.........unlike the "old days" when your Mom was home to take care of the family, and possibly Grandma and Grandpa, the world has changed, you have to work, people are living much longer, and some of us need help, and shouldn't feel guilty about it. Think about what's best for them, and their situation. Don't think a month ahead, look 3 years ahead, and project the future complications of their current health issues, because you don't want to make multiple moves to places that won't work after 6 months or a year (I moved them twice in 6 months), The truth is, it's the "little" signs, like those listed in the article that are the key. Parents have pride in themselves and their homes, and never want to admit that they're struggling......you have to be a "detective" to figure it out. You want to look at things on the surface and believe them when they say that everything is OK, but you really can't, because if you dig, they're not OK. I found that watching their behavior IN THEIR OWN HOUSEHOLD is important. I have siblings that used to meet my parents out for dinner or an event, such as a party, and all seemed rosey, but at their house, which by the way was worth over a million bucks, the place was dirty, 2 burners on the stove didn't work, half of the light bulbs in the house were out, the toilet was running (and they couldn't hear it), there was moldy food in the fridge, their clothes were smelly, and they weren't taking their medication on schedule. Someone commented about "snooping", but the truth is that that's how you uncover problems. I discovered that some bills were being paid twice, and some not at all, Mom's life insurance had lapsed (thank God I was able to reinstate it), interest charges on credit cards were piling up because only minimum payments were being made, when they had plenty of money in the bank to pay in full. They weren't giving the accountant documentation that would have given them additional write-offs. Their wallets were filled with multiple credit cards (they were suckered into opening cards that would give them special discounts), most that they didn't use. In addition, if you examine prescriptions, you'll probably find that doctors are writing prescriptions for 30 day supplies, when they could be writing 90, which would offer some savings (in the case of one of my Mother's prescriptions, the savings was $45), and whoever goes to the pharmacy would have to go less often. You'd be doing them a favor by "downsizing" their wallets to leave them with one or two credit cards, which would cut down on mail, catalogs, etc, and make it easy if their wallets were ever lost or stolen. Keep in mind that there is no perfect solution. If you can afford one, you can get a home aid, and it's hard to find a good one, but all your parent will do all day is sit around like a couch potato and watch TV. Someone will still have to bring them to physical therapy, the doctor, the hairdresser, the lab for their bi-weekly or monthly blood work (if they take coumadin) etc, and they will have no social life. There is no perfect solution, you have to work with what's out there, and try to get the rest of your family on board to supplement what's missing. Assisted Living is a great help, because to me safety, access to medical care, medication management, balanced meals and socialization is at the top of the list, and Assisted Living provides all. You may have "sticker shock" when you visit an Assisted Living facility, but do yourself a favor....make a spreadsheet of all of their house expenses (don't forget groceries, heat, electric, phone, cable, landscaping, snow removal, garbage removal, a cleaning person, homeowner's insurance, taxes, mortgage payments, car and car insurance payments, if they're still driving), and compare, and you'll probably be surprised. Even if the house is paid off, there are still lots of expenses. Then think about future costs such as an aging roof, furnace, and making their home handicap accessible (which by the way will be a deterrent when you eventually sell the house). Think of the priceless intangibles......that you can spend time "visiting" your parents at Assisted Living, or taking them out for the day, overnight, or weekend, and not going to their house and being the handyman or housekeeper, as I was. If and when (it will happen more frequently as they get older) you have to take them to the emergency room they'll be brought in immediately with all necessary paperwork with the Assisted Living facility, and you can meet them at the hospital, instead of sitting for hours in a waiting room for attention. You'll also be able to sleep at night knowing they're safe, and you won't get the constant phone calls about the "drama of the day" because Mom will be busy getting her nails and hair done, Dad will be chatting with the guys, and they'll be looking forward to the daily movie, bingo game, craft class, book club meeting, exercise class, or trip to a winery, casino, community concert, Target, Macy's or Walgreen's. It might sound like I sent my parents away, but I didn't.....they were part of the decision with some coaxing (after I toured the good, bad, and ugly, and narrowed it down to a few), and along with one other sibling out of four of us that was involved, and not in denial, I got a piece of my life back. Sadly, two of my siblings spent the last few years of my Dad's life being bitter towards me because they felt that I took my parents away from "the family home" (which by the way, they couldn't afford anymore), and not visiting a lot because they wouldn't embrace the benefits of Assisted Living and were afraid and uncomfortable interacting with the older population. I believe today, they are full of regret for what they didn't do. I, on the other hand, got to spend the last few years of my Dad's life doing things that made him comfortable, and made him smile.....taking him on outings, visiting his old friends, taking a drive or sitting outside reading the paper to him, knowing that the day to day stuff was in someone else's hands. Hope this helps. There's another topic of creating trusts and wills that I left out, but that's another story.......PS, the best thing that you can do is learn a lesson from all of it, downsize when the time is right, and let your kids know what you want for your future! about 3 years ago, dantelara said... Assisted living is an nightmare what we saw in documentary videos. We rather take care of our family members much as possible. I a very cruel world out there ! about 3 years ago, Kent Clark said... My grandparents are getting older. With their family living out of state, they need additional help. This is a great article that will help us help them make that transition. about 3 years ago, ShelleyS said... It was very well done. I would be interested in hearing your tips about how to best care for a mom in her 90s who doesn't want to be in the retirement center. She prefers to be alone and isn't used to having her life run by institutional patterns (such as sharing laundry machines, going to dinner at specified times, and so on.) The family thinks she's better off at the center because she's around other people, but that's one of the things she complains about. Every week she says she wants to move back to the house. Besides listening compassionately, what else would you suggest to help her be more comfortable? Thanks! about 3 years ago, Justpeople said... Yes, we know all these symptoms, but when you go out there, everything turns into money,money,money. So, If you can not afford at least 2,000 a month!! separate from your regular budget, your parents will die without proper help, because all of us work to pay rent and utilities, food and all of the regular, and have no Veterans, or are rich. Sad, but good luck with that. You will not qualify. Don't let them fool you. over 3 years ago, juan felix said... Very informative brochure that is on the computers screen. over 3 years ago, chunkalunka said... My Dad lives 18 hours away from us,but he does need some help with house duties. over 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Have someone to give this to...Thanks over 3 years ago, sickpuppy said... I am almost there. I hope I die before I get overwhelmed in my own home! over 3 years ago, RosaR said... Hello, If you need assistance locating a community, Caring.com's Family Advisors are here to help. Family Advisors can be reached on a toll-free phone number 7 days a week. To contact a Family Advisor call 800-325-8591. over 3 years ago, Charles G. said... We are currently living in low income housing in Georgetown. Looking to move to a smaller community within 50 miles. over 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... You are way off base. Maybe someone should snoop through your house. over 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Sage advice. I wish I would hsvr rezc this a couple years ago when many of these signs began popping up with my parents. Thank you over 3 years ago, MABunnell said... This may be signs help is needed but not necessarily that a move into a facility is required....in-home care agencies are available as you well know, over 3 years ago, angelosdaughter said... Many of these are very good tips to look for, but for some of us who have never been social, the lack of friends or staying at home is not abnormal. Neither is clutter if we have always been lax about housekeeping. Assisted living? Don't make me laugh. I make a very small social security check. It wouldn't even pay for a month. Hopefully I will be dead before I have to leave my home. My mind, thank God is still very good, even if the arthritis affects my ability to do much around the house. I do keep my bills paid, keep up with my husband's medications and doctors' appointments, and deal with any problems that arise.. The house gets cleaned with a lick and a promise when I feel well enough to do it. I have a nephew who helps me. I don't and never have invited anyone outside the family into my house because I have never been terribly diligent about housekeeping, In fact, I hate it, and do the bare minimum.I loved working, but my position was eliminated 8 years ago, Not working has not made me more interested in keeping house, so again the state of my house is not a good indicator of anything except my intense dislike of housekeeping. I am depressed for a very good reason: I don't see anything good about aging, and there is only one way out of it. There is no one size fits all in this situation. over 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Who looks for the 11 signs it might be time for assisted living when the afflicted one has no children? I have been watching the tv show hoarders it seems failure to diagnose is the biggest cause. When home gets gutters frozen causing ice dams and mold in walls the resident of house gets brain decline, then the pests move into home causing more brain decline. Insurers take money but do not cover the care people and houses really need. How many physicians even ask about home conditions? They have lots of money and just assume the patients call for repairman as they do. over 3 years ago, gaz said... My 59 year old brother lives alone, we believe that he is suffering from frontotemporal loba dementia, The house is inhabitable. Books and mail strewn everywhere. His refridgerator is frozen partially open. His balance is off. We tried having him stay at our house, he was found wandering along the highway one mile away. He drinks two liters of Dr. Pepper in the evenings and walks up and down the hallway all night, He also visits the bathroom about every fifteen minutes. We have appointment with neurologist in fifteen days. What is the best way to get him into a nursing facility. over 3 years ago, acleanslate1949@aol. said... I have been shuttled from home to home for the last 5 years. Living alone, living In a senior citizen apartment building, living with my son and his family and now living with my daughter and 2 cats and a puppy. Because I have always been able to keep my scale of real pain, nerves, emotional problems, my family thinks I am a hypochondriac or just faking my symptoms. I cry almost every night after they go to bed because if I cry in front of them they tell me to "chill out" or that "everyone hurts a little bit as they age." They took my license away and sold my car; took over my finances; moved me over 1000 miles away to Pensylvania from Illinois and left me with no friends and no social life (my daughter is single with no children but she works 40 hour shifts. My hygiene has gone to almost nil; I am depressed making myself sick 24/7 and she doesn't even notice it. She has decided she's going to stay with her (and I do appreciate it but I need a bit more help) until I die; in fact, she's planning on moving to St. Croix in a few years -- would have been wonderful 30 years ago! I shouldn't complain because compared to so many poor people, I have it made. over 3 years ago, RosaR said... Hello, If you are looking for housing options in your area, Caring.com's Family Advisors can help locate a community that meets your financial needs as well as other factors. Family Advisors can be reached by phone 7 days a week at (800) 325- 8591. over 3 years ago, firstname.lastname@example.org said... need more info on costs ... over 3 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Helpful to read of the things to be watching for. almost 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... It is good to have caretakers come in and take care of an elderly parent ....but what do you do when they the elderly parent start getting rid of them and there is no else for them to send ...just because they don't like what they are doing almost 4 years ago, 5607 said... Yes it was .The information reenforces what we are seeing with a family. Member who has Alzheimer's. The family member is still in her own home with in house companions but we Know it will be necessary to consider a memory unit in an assisted living facility almost 4 years ago, Carolyn said... Especially the last few items. Because of those (how to have the driving talk, and How to have "the housing talk), I intend to send this on to my daughter. She is the one (with help from her uncle and 3 cousins) will have to be the one to "assist" with those issues. I am dreading that phase of my survival. I am afraid that I will take offense at the way in which she does "the talks". I can just see that coming. Any future of that is too soon. almost 4 years ago, chettur said... Nice article. I want to bee a subscriber almost 4 years ago, magintob said... very comprehensive and wide ranging list, very practical. this is one of the best discussions on this topic I've ever read. thank you! almost 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I was on this site for 5 minutes now I'm getting all these emails about caring for parents about 4 years ago, CaringDenise said... Thanks everyone for your comments! @Colin B. -- Please contact your local county agency for assistance offline, such as the agency on aging: http://www.caring.com/local/area-agency-on-aging If you need help finding an assisted living community, our family advisors are also available by phone (toll-free): (866) 824-8174 If you're experiencing an emergency, the best way to get immediate help is to call 911 rather than go online in the comments section of an article. Thanks again, and hopefully these resources will be helpful to you. about 4 years ago, Colin B. said... If this was an emergency, I could be dead by the time that I got a reply. about 4 years ago, Colin B. said... If only I could get a properly and thoroughly trained professional on these matters to come to my home and to help me to get organized. As an invalid, I'm already in over my head, especially since my dear mom died, and nobody cares. about 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... self assessment about 4 years ago, Vader1 said... I subscribed to Caring.com years ago, anticipating this time in my life; as a caregiver, my family member is on the borderline of needing more care. This needs assessment and its linked article about in-home care serve as important self-assessment tools - how I'm doing as the caregiver and areas in which I need to improve. about 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Yes the 11 signs are accurate, HOWEVER, if the elderly person does not have funds to pay for Assisted Living, it's not happening. Other parts of the world, and in this country not too long ago, elderly were cared for at home, without question. Yes it is a huge task, but the caregivers were supported by the community in their task. The problem nowadays is that modern medicine has extended elderly lives waaaaay past their due date. We should not be putting pacemakers, hips, and cancer treatments in people past an agreed-upon age, perhaps it is 80, or 85. I have 2 parents age 93 and 97, basically watching TV all day long, peeing and crapping in their $1 a pair Depends, not contributing to society, yet their costs are $50,000 per year, EACH. What good is this? over 4 years ago, Anny628 said... What an excellent reference tool.!!! When I try to verbalize symptoms, my mind always goes blank!!! thank you! over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Helps us not feel guilty about the move we made some time ago. It was the right decision. over 4 years ago, BGayle said... It is helpful to me in evaluating myself. I recently lost my husband, so I am alone and trying to cope with all that entails. At 85, I have to consider all options. So far I'm making it, but I'm sire this can't last forever. My children all live at least 6 hours away. over 4 years ago, CaringDenise said... For anonymous and others asking about how to proceed with finding assisted living and getting help: Our team of Family Advisors is available to assist by phone seven days a week: (866) 824-8174. Your local Area Agency on Aging is also a resource you can call to find assistance: http://www.caring.com/local/area-agency-on-aging Please use the search bar at the top of Caring.com pages to find senior care tips on specific topics (such as getting family involved). The menus at the top of Caring.com pages also link to popular articles that may be of interest and help to you. Thank you! over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... What help is there for a 72 yr old senior who is homebound, needs assistance with house chores because of several health disabilities, ie spinal degeneration with arthritis in all extremities, has a permanent trach that is taken care of by self (retired professional). After the emergency trach surgery and recuperation with extensive therapies, was advised to not drive. (I didnot interpret that as a lifetime order, but the relative responsible for overseeing the care, did think it was a permanent order, hence the car was taken away). Promise was made that when I wanted or needed to go someplace I could use the car or be taken. But that hasn't been the outcome. I do get "meals on wheels", thankfully, and had some assistance inhome for a couple months, But my problem is more the absence of my familys'; presence. I have to beg to be phoned, or have groceries picked up, my meds etc. No longer do my daugter or grand-dtr just come to sit down and visit. I feel neglected, like I'm a burden and would love to move to an Assisted Living place, or a Retirement community, since I'm doing my own care; just can't keep up the housework and maintenance of this big two story house. How can I light a fire under them to help me to relocate, be more responsive to my needs particularly the paperwork to get financial assistance for the move. Do any other parents have these worries? Any suggestions regarding what I need to do, other than walk to the river and jump in? over 4 years ago, BGayle said... All of it! I'm considering assisted living for myself, not a family member. Lots of decisions to be made! over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I live alone and do not have any of the signs of needing assisted living listed in your article. However, you mentioned "daily calling service." I have a "panic button" on my remote for the home security system, but I worry that if I am unconscious no one may find me for days. How do I find a service that will call me once day? I'd appreciate it if you would address this problem in your newsletter. over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I have no one to look into 'declining health' for me, so I want to do it for myself while I still can. I'm only 66, but I have had some instances of memory problems (which first started when I was in my 40s). I presently live in independent-living for the 'aged', but when I forgot to schedule my bill payments last month, and was consequently hit with 'late charges' for them, I decided that I can't take a chance on my memory slipping like that again, and maybe with something more critical to my life. over 4 years ago, ANIMALSHELTER2 said... A 76 yr old dear friend of mine has lived in my home for 8 mon. due to her not getting along with only daughter. friend has dementia and 5 yr ago had a hip replacement. from am to pm sit at dinning rm table watching tv. she doesnt care about hygene, and hair is washed only if i do it for her. doesnt want to go out side. she lies about everything even if the truth would be better. she only gets up from chair to go to bathroom and that is at least 30 to 35 times a day. honest truth. dr says she is in very good health physically, except hi blood pressure, and tingly feelings in legs. legs are probably from not using them. as her power of att., and on one of two bank accts., i see that her bills are paid. she has credit cards that are nearly maxed due to her daughter being on acct. i have got her taken off now. monthly bills min payments use up most of income . it costs her nothing to live and eat here. i do her laundry, feed her, see that she takes meds on time every day. she has fallen on a couple of occassions, one serious, and was told that if the daughter could sue me because she fell inside my home. now due to my own health issues and the strain and worry that is on my partner, and myself im thinking of finding alternative living facilities for friend. three problems one she is a smoker, two drinks alcohol, and no money to speak of. question; ANY SUGGESTIONS? over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... What can I do about an elderly woman in her 70s who is living alone with no family in the city. She can't hardly walk and she lives in a large home that she can't care for. She is constantly asking neighbors to cut her yard for her and I know they are starting to get angry that they have to cut her yard as well as their own. Our neighborhood has very large yards...nearly an acre each and that is really a lot to keep asking of the neighbors. Also she can't drive and she never steps foot outside so she doesn't notice how terrible her home and yard are starting to look. Neighbors get her mail for her everyday as she can't walk to the mailbox and back to the house. She has a sister who lives about an hour away who comes and buys groceries for her about every 3 weeks or so. As concerned neighbors we would like to know if there is anyone we can contact that can possible assess her situation and determine if she should be living there alone. She is sort of stubborn and know that the reason she is still there is because she refuses to leave. She never has any visitors and we are concerned that she will just sit in that house and it will fall apart around her and she really shouldn't be living alone. over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Very helpful. over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... this article made us realize that for everyone's health and sanity; the time has come to get looking for an assisted living facility. over 4 years ago, Kris31 said... I am not certain if any local places could assist me. I'd lose so much anyway. over 4 years ago, mulberry1 said... While I agree with some of the commenters that families need to be more involved with elders and caring for them rather than "shipping them off", I think we need to be sure we know what we are talking about. Some assisted living facilities are like nice apartment communities and include things like beauty salons, libraries, diners, pubs, and more, including elegant dining and so forth. They are expensive as they provide housekeeping, transportation, meals, laundry services, and so forth. These communities aren't always the foreboding place we imagine and some older people see improvement in these environments as their social circle expands and their access to other activities increases. Of course you have to shop around, some of them are not much better than a nursing home. over 4 years ago, Dawn & GG said... Article is helpful. I can decide now, with the tips you have provided, to assist my aging mother. Thank you. over 4 years ago, bruce bb said... Another important sign,is if the person, cann't find,or get,to the nearest OTB on their own. I say this as someone who is 70. over 4 years ago, Sheryl RN said... Hospice is a wonderful option for dealing with terminal illness at home. Depending on where you live, services can include: nursing, caregiver, volunteer to sit at the bedside, social worker and minister visits. If the client has Medicare or Medicaid all of this is usually covered. over 4 years ago, Sheryl RN said... This is great information in an easy to read format. I'm sending copies to friends dealing with a parent living at home alone and having decline. I'm also saving it for future clients. Everyone wants to stay at home and this needs to be encouraged as long as the individual can be safe and is getting the assistance that is needed to succeed. over 4 years ago, captain_day said... alsheimers is not the issue. The terminally ill also make these decisions very difficult. over 4 years ago, a fellow commenter said... egad my mom shows most all of these symptoms. almost 5 years ago, Jan to Rick said... All but # 4, 7, & 9 have some applicable points. almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Phone # for middle-aged assisted living: almost 5 years ago, Feeltheburn said... The entire article...the danger signs and what to look for.... almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... It reinforced my thought that it is time for my brother to consider moving to an assisted living facility. He is 63 and has many health issues, and I have basically been his caretaker. I am 70 and am beginning to have some problems myself and am unable to do as much for him as before. This article tells me that I really need to have "the talk" with him, to save my own health. almost 5 years ago, Elizabeth lock said... After reading this article I must agree with readers below, all of my college student sons would be institutionalized! These symptoms are dangerously general. Dogs with long nails, unopened mail, car dents...this would include me at forty! Please don't hug your grandma as if you are happy to see her, and check her weight and hygiene..... almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... We found this article horrendously ominous and power hungry rather than compassionate and rational. We conduct compassionate caregivers circle for Parkinson's caregivers at home, and have sociologists speak on the horrific difference between Americans waiting for dreaded signs to institutionalize elders, and the rest of the world who cannot imagine this mindset, such as our East Indian associates who relish elder extended family and would never consider giving them to strangers who do not love the, as well trinidadians, Italians and caymanians in our global blogs, who scratch their heads at Americans looking for 'the time' to give parents to strangers. This article particularly emanates a disciplinary authoritarian tone, encouraging one to search for reasons that are inane and can be easily handled at home. How sad. almost 5 years ago, kate777 said... I have been an editor of a senior Care newspaper and have never seen such a comprehensive article, pinpointing a variety of touchstones for Assisted Living care. almost 5 years ago, is this email addres said... just putting it all together... almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I am a middle aged lady going on 70 and my spouse has alzheimer disease. We live in our own home and hope to continue to do it as long as possible. I don't understand people these days. When I was young we almost always had a grandparent living with us. I don't remember either of my parents ever complaining, nor any of their five children. I don't understand young people these days. I agree, that once a person can't feed himself, get out of bed, or handle their toiletry needs it may be time for outside help but I sure hope our children don't rush us off to some form of institutional living because we can't be as clean and neat as we once were. Instead of shipping the elderly off let us work on getting more assistance and visiting often, so that they can stay in their own homes as long as possible. Even if they are grumpy sometimes! almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... My husband is in assisted living. I was looking for confirmation that I did the right thing. I believe I found it. almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... excellent --- excellent... But, I can't help but notice that some of the signs are similar to issues of middle aged people who have two jobs and stretched lives... SMILE almost 5 years ago, aslanandyoda said... My neighbor (maybe 75 yrs) has been showing signs of forgetfulness for several years. Today I went in to her home to see her holiday tree and saw piles of unopened mail in the living room and that the kitchen was totally full of dirty dishes, pots, cans of cat food. No clear counter space at all. Then 15 minutes later she clearly had forgotten our discussion of the location of her orange cat. Her husband appears to travel most of the time - maybe not a citizen of the US - so he isn't around at all. She seems lonely and disconnected from everyone. Nor do I want to be involved. I suppose I could take her along to an assisted living seminar nearby. Maybe I'll start a conversation with her about that. Sad if you have no family and no close friends. almost 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I read the article to see if I was having any signs it was time for me to consider moving into an assisted living. Actually I would like to find a mature woman to share my home with. almost 5 years ago, Seashell73 said... The signs for me and my siblings for my father to enter a home was when the stages of dementia became very obvious and he became unable to care for himself in everyday life. about 5 years ago, His caregiver said... Very! over 5 years ago, mike griff said... Christ, my mother has been exhibiting the majority of these since in her 20's ! over 5 years ago, garydouglasbrandt said... Very detailed and specific and I have sent this to my three sons for them to read. I am 70 years old and want them to realize this might be something for them to consider iin the near future, over 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... Another tip for early dementia: Take pictures of them at a gathering and see if they appear to know how to look into the camera and smile/pose. As people grow older they may not realize they are suppose to be looking into the camera and will instead be looking out into space with a blank stare... over 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... I hate to say this only because of the realization that it is true. But, we need to put our elderly in jail/prison and our the convicted criminals in nursing home. As I type this my 33 year old brother is in a nursing home. However, the criminals get 3 good, hot meals, they shower regularly, go outside on a regular basis, the list goes on and on. Yet our elderly are sitting/laying in their own filth, get a shower or scrub bath twice a week (if lucky), hardly ever go outside unless they can do it themselves. The food is horrendous, and again the list goes on and on. I understand not all Nursing homes are bad. In the last 12 years I have visited 7 nursing homes for family members (father/brother). My fathers first meal in a nursing home (run by physicians), was given ground beef with a little gravy, steamed broccoli, and spice cake. They forgot that he had no teeth (because of caner of the throat), his left side of his throat was paralyzed from the cancer, his right side of his mouth, tongue, throat, was paralyzed from a stroke (which is what put him in there), besides not having any salivary glands because of the cancer. We were told that C.N.A. would be in there to assist him and make sure he did not choke. There was no C.N.A.- he did choke, thus having aspirated pneumonia. Causing a heart attack, and 32 days on life support!!! We were called atleast once in the middle of the night to say our Goodbye's. That was not the last time he choked on food at a nursing home. My second call as an EMT was to a nursing home patient. Had the nursing home called us the day before when this female had started becoming sick she would be alive. Yet they waited 17 hours before they called 911. We literally "Scooped and Run". She died moments later at the hospital. I can go on and on. My brother now doesn't see a C.N.A. from 3 pm till around 7 pm. The nurse comes in gives him his dinner, and then gets attached to his antibiotics. The Criminals in our country are treated so much better then those who have gone before us, those who have set the way our lives are today. It isn't the last two generations who showed to us that racial segregation is wrong. Or that have developed medical breakthroughs like penicillin. It is the generations in the nursing home. Not getting the respect they deserve. There has got to be a way to treat our elderly better. over 5 years ago, a fellow commenter said... My husband has early-onset Alzheimer's Disease. This article focuses on older adults and it gave me no insight on how to evaluate the circumstances that would make assisted living a better solution for him over 5 years ago, driveturt said... My 84 year old aunt has been living on her own but it is time to start looking at other options, but the only thing she wants is to either stay at her house or move in with me. She recently came and stayed a couple of nights during the heat wave and though it was fine for those few days long term it wouldn't work. She is not used to living in a house with an 11 year old, or sharing living space and she is very opinionated and wants things her way, which is not the necessarily the way we live. I am just sick about this because I feel like I should open my home to her because she is family but she can be very difficult ( she's been married and divorced 3 times ) and always has been. almost 7 years ago, Labe said... Entire article-Thanks about 7 years ago, Laurence said... It is the first time I see your site. I am from Quebec, Canada and I am french. Your site is very helpfull for me and my mother who is Alzheimer.