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Advice need on help with aged parents

Advice need on help with aged parents

Old Dec 18th 2012, 9:51 am
  #16  
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Your parents must be registered with a doctor ?
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 10:11 am
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Originally Posted by 2bretired View Post
Due to the fact we cannot move back to UK for a while until her arm gets better. My wife is hesitant going back as we live in southern California were it is sunny most of the time and very laid back to UK were it rains most of the time. Plus we found the National Health to be a bit suspect compared to our local heath system.
Hi Bob,

If my parents were in this situation I would return to the UK for the time-being. Yes your wife has injured herself but I think the needs of your parents outweigh the needs of your wife in this situation. If you have lived in the States for a while surely your wife has friends and family to help her out? Whereas your parents have no one. You talk about it being sunny where you are in the States. Personally I do not think this is a good enough reason to stay where you are and not return to the UK. A bit of bad weather should not be stopping you taking on your responsibilities. You owe it to your parents since they have spent their life raising you.

As people have mentioned in previous posts you need to face up to responsibilities and help out as best you can. Basically the answer to your question is you should return to the UK. Charities, doctors etc are great but can only help out so much. As someone else mentioned it is likely your parents will become confused about form filling and procedures etc so it's best for you to be there.
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 11:37 am
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Originally Posted by Pom_Chch View Post
Hi Bob,

If my parents were in this situation I would return to the UK for the time-being. Yes your wife has injured herself but I think the needs of your parents outweigh the needs of your wife in this situation. If you have lived in the States for a while surely your wife has friends and family to help her out? Whereas your parents have no one. You talk about it being sunny where you are in the States. Personally I do not think this is a good enough reason to stay where you are and not return to the UK. A bit of bad weather should not be stopping you taking on your responsibilities. You owe it to your parents since they have spent their life raising you.

As people have mentioned in previous posts you need to face up to responsibilities and help out as best you can. Basically the answer to your question is you should return to the UK. Charities, doctors etc are great but can only help out so much. As someone else mentioned it is likely your parents will become confused about form filling and procedures etc so it's best for you to be there.
What you said. Old age changes everything. Tough decisions have to be made.
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 5:14 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Hello 2bretired,
there is no phone call to make or button to press that will take care of all the challenges of your aged parents.

I can't offer more than my own experiences.

Local authorities want people to take care of themselves in their own homes for as long as possible so as not to be an avoidable burden on the welfare services.

The best move my aging parents made when they were getting infirm was to sell their house and move into warden-monitored local authority housing. There they have similar aged neighbors and friends, the warden visits daily and there is access to call on services.

Their original doctor didn't make home visits either but there seems to be new doctors at the surgery willing now to come out.

Doctors can sign patients to be admitted to hospital but not to a sheltered / care home, that would be Social Services call.

While sound of mind, people cannot be confined to hospital or anywhere else if they do not want to be. My mother with advanced Parkinsons has signed herself out of doctor-directed hospital stays twice now against all best-intentioned urgings of staff and family.
She was adamant she would not stay in hospital and definitely didn't want to go into care home.

My mother is back in hospital now having fallen (without injury) when she was back home. My father couldn't lift her and the ambulance was 2+ hours arriving because it was non-emergency.
This latest episode has caused her to realize that she / they cannot manage at home and she is resigned to hospital and that a care home is her next step (tomorrow).

In hospital her case has come to attention of all the appropriate specialist areas including Social Services that can make all arrangements. Prior to hospital we seemed to go in circles of trying to locate the right contacts.

Now it all seems to have happened automatically without effort from us now that, it seems, the hospital needs the bed and there is a personal danger if she sent home.

So, would it have gone this way if I had still been living in USA ? Probably. since it seems I have been of little influence to the process.
But if I had been in US I would have been distressed to not be here to offer what little I can to the process.
My parents get some comfort from the thought that I am here to oversee their best interests and that they can reach out if they need me.
I feel I have made the best effort, even though they resisted anything that I suggested to help them through the past two years.

My (step) father now will be capable of taking care of just himself in the warden-housing and be able to visit my mother in the nearby care home.

It has been a difficult time, it will continue to be. With aged people reaching the last episode of their lives the rules of their lives have changed and new conditions and influences apply.
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 6:00 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Hi Bob

Were either of your parents in the armed services? if so the Royal British Legion have welfare officers throughout the country and may be able to help....check out the RBL website for details of this and the six 'Poppy Homes' that they own - they all accept local authority funded residents but applicants (or their spouse) have to have a minimum of 5 days 'service' in one of the armed forces.

Age UK may also be of help.

HTH & best wishes
B
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 6:41 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Thanks all for your great advice,
After reading all these posts I realize what I was really looking for was help with making decision with dealing with parents that have become like children. When I am there my mother says no to everything my father ask the same question over and over and is paranoid about everything electrical, so the pressure builds up dealing with this.

I am returning in January and am planning to try to convince my parents to allow me to put the electric and phone bills in my name. Hopping this will stop my father plugging everything and I can move back for months at time buy a cheap runaround car to take care of them.

Bob
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 8:02 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Originally Posted by 2bretired View Post
Thanks all for your great advice,
After reading all these posts I realize what I was really looking for was help with making decision with dealing with parents that have become like children. When I am there my mother says no to everything my father ask the same question over and over and is paranoid about everything electrical, so the pressure builds up dealing with this.

I am returning in January and am planning to try to convince my parents to allow me to put the electric and phone bills in my name. Hopping this will stop my father plugging everything and I can move back for months at time buy a cheap runaround car to take care of them.

Bob
Good on ya. Sounds like a plan.
Sometimes it takes conversation with non-involved people to resolve one's own feelings, needs and road ahead.
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Old Dec 18th 2012, 8:12 pm
  #23  
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Originally Posted by 2bretired View Post
Thanks all for your great advice,
After reading all these posts I realize what I was really looking for was help with making decision with dealing with parents that have become like children. When I am there my mother says no to everything my father ask the same question over and over and is paranoid about everything electrical, so the pressure builds up dealing with this.

I am returning in January and am planning to try to convince my parents to allow me to put the electric and phone bills in my name. Hopping this will stop my father plugging everything and I can move back for months at time buy a cheap runaround car to take care of them.

Bob
Good choice, Bob. Try and see the situation from your parents point of view. They are vulnerable, scared, lonely and not well. I work with the elderly and sometimes I feel they come across moody and act like kids but deep down they are very vulnerable and just need support.
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Old Dec 20th 2012, 2:37 am
  #24  
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

I would try Social Services again (worked for them for 15 years and was a manager in an older persons team) Everybody should be entitled to an assessment no matter how much money they have.. (quote the community care act at them 1991 I think) State that they are at risk Speak to the GP about an asessment for your Dad as once he has a diagnosis that can help.

When people are reluctant to give up their independence it often takes a crisis for them to accept a bit of help, They are most probably entitled to attendeance allowance which can help towards any care, very very stressful, are you an only child? I had to go back twice in 6 months but I'm lucky I have brothers and sisters, very worrying for you, I would keep hassling social services though, and get that full assessment, plus see the GP

Best of luck
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Old Dec 20th 2012, 4:17 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Thanks pompeyblonde,
As I said I will probably be better able to sort stuff out when I am actually there. Plan on staying with parents for 3-4 months at a time, wife will stay behind and take are of house. Cost approx 900 pounds a trip. Flight and taxi from Heathrow to Portsmouth area. I tried a bus/train but could not get to airport early on return and it did not cost that much more for the comfort of a taxi. Luckily direct flight from Los Angeles to Heathrow approx 10 hours flight time, 3 hour pre-boarding check in , long walk at Heathrow, 2 hours taxi ride.
I am the only child, my brother died at 3.
GP no help, specialist came to house and diagnosed vascular dementia and handed it back to the GP who said he was not bad enough yet. He is still functional but just has bad short term memory, nothing could be done. They live in a small village which had become crowded over the years. GP only allowed 15 min per visit it seem like in-out-next.

Bob
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Old Dec 20th 2012, 7:49 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

So sorry to hear about your situation. Dealing with elderly parents is a nightmare and there are no easy solutions.

We have just learnt that my father-in-law has esophageal cancer (or gullet cancer as he called it). Having been diagnosed with Barretts's esophagus 18 months ago, I was not surprised by the diagnosis after my FIL explained his symptoms.

My husband is now in that awful position all expats eventually end up and like you, now it comes down the what to do. MyFIL is very independent, living on his own since his wife died the year before we moved to USA plus his other son lives in Australia. Unfortunately, he is also of the old school that you don't ask for help unless you really need it, so I can see a bit of battle coming up. Unlike yourself, fortunately he has a very good neighbour who will be go between until my husband can return to the Scotland in the new year.

What sort of contact do you have with the neighbour that helps out? Maybe they can be advocate for your parents in regards to the Doctor or social services. You might need to give them some written authority if they were willing but at least you could return to CA, knowing someone is available for them. Also I would be hard and ignore you parents desire to stay in their own home, if they are as handicapped as you say. That will be hard but you will have the peace of mind, that they are in a safe place. At least you speak the same language, my parents live in the middle of nowhere in France! I don't speak french. (That is a similar situation to yours which we are dealing with, again having to rely on a good neighbour)

Good luck. I am hoping when it comes to the same situation with us (our kids live in other states and one of them ultimately want to be elsewhere in the world) we would have had the foresight to plan ahead and not put our children in the same situation.
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Old Dec 21st 2012, 1:38 am
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Portsmouth?? thats where I was a manager! Its a pretty complex system they have there, you need to get through helpdesk (unqualified staff) and get a proper referral which will then go to the duty team and get allocated, PM me if you need more help/advice etc
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Old Dec 21st 2012, 1:42 am
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

Also I would be hard and ignore you parents desire to stay in their own home, if they are as handicapped as you say.
I know its hard, but you cant actually ignore their wishes!

There is support available to keep people at home, meals, personal care, day care, respite etc its just a case of getting them into the system as it were.
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Old Dec 21st 2012, 5:29 pm
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Default Re: Advice need on help with aged parents

pompeyblonde,
Just sent you a PM. Read your blog and now you have made me feel old. I just turned 66, old enough to be your father. I nearly died at 60 due to an apparent rare heart problem. The pericardium sack around my heart was getting hard restricting my heart movement. Had an open heart surgery to remove it, have been fine ever since. They had no idea what caused it. Found all this out just as I retired at 60. the pension people told me that most people who retired in my business only lasted an average of 2 years, so far I have made it to 6 years.

Bob
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