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Hi,
I have 3 children ages 17, 12 and 10. When My Grandmother moved in here every one was for it, Now its been a year and it has changed so much. Her Demetia is worse, she tells people things that aren't true. One example she told a friend of hers that I was making my oldest daughter sell pickles and it was illegal. I do alot of canning in the summer but keep all the harvest for us. She tells people I don't take her out any place, whenever I suggest going anywheres to visit she says she is too sick. She likes to try and tell my youngest how to act if we have company around. My middle one in my grandmothers eyes is wonderful.
My children are very familar with Alz. and Demetia. I used to work in a facility that was just alzheimers(I still do ocassionally) and I would take them in to visit. They know what to expect and they know she doesn't know what she is saying most of the time or mean what she says. It doen't make it any easier on them but they all seem to handle it well.
I think its hardest on my oldest cuz her and My grandmother were close when she was younger, she used to babysit when I worked, the other two don't really remember staying at her house or going places with her.
I guess I've rambled on enough
It isn't easy dskjjt... even with having brought them to the facility whre you worked, caregiving, the grief, daily losses etc are so different for each individual involved.

Your might consider having family meetings and even bring in a social worker or a professional to discuss what you are feeling, encouraging the children to either write or draw what they are feeling to express themselves... there is a wonderful book on grieving and a wonderful book for children on living with someone with AD by Katherine Dorn Zotovich that you can find at: www.journalkeepers.com with some wonderful ideas and suggestions that can help young ones into their teens..

Gail
My daughter (who is 20) is pretty good about dealing with her Grandfather's issues. However, she runs whenever she can. LOL. She does seem to have a good concept of death. But like I read in the other post, she feels I do not have the time for her I used too. And I do not. We would have some really, really long conversations at the dinner table. Not any more. My father is in constant need and she can see I am wore out at times. Sometimes her anger present's itself by her yelling, "I know you hate me."
Now, I love her more than anyone, and she knows that. But that is the anger. She had a good relationship with her G-Pa before he became ill, it was devestating to her at first. Now that she is older, I think she is pretty good.
My grandaughter is only 4 years old. She has only known Uncle Wayne as a disabled person. We were worried for awhile when she was 2 years old, as she thought all the wheelchairs at the store were only for Uncle Wayne's use. One day we were waiting for the wheelchair at the grocery store to become available and she stood at the door, hands on hips, and said quite loudly....now who moved Uncle Wayne's wheelchair!

She has a very special relationship with her mommy's brother. They color together, read together, watch cartoons together. They swim together in the summertime. It is the one time Uncle Wayne can move around like she does.

As he began declining she would bring stickers over and put them on his leg or chest. She rubs his head.

She has always recieved permission to visit him in the hospital. Even ICU. We do limit her time to no more than 10 minutes.

She has never known anyone who died, though she did have a dog that died. She goes to church and is quite bright. Coming home from the hospital the last time, she told me that Jesus died and went to heaven and now he is in her heart. Then asked if Uncle Wayne would be in her heart too. I think she knows that Uncle Wayne is going to be going away though we have not said it to her.

When she is here and Uncle Wayne is sleeping during the day, she knows he doesn't feel good. Sometimes she will watch tv or play a game on his computer. But lately, she has been playing with Wayne's dog while Wayne is sleeping.

She is quite good if I have to stop playing with her in order to tend to Wayne. But she has grown up with Wayne's problems and to her they are part of every day life.
Hello Sue and Carolyn,

I think that when you get caught up emotionally in all that you are faced with, you are at a loss of control and balance for yourselves.. all it take is five minutes a day looking into the eyes of your loved one and telling them that you are having a rough day... that balancing all of this takes a toll on yourself.. and that you love them more than they can imagine.. that it is a time for you all to support one another.. a time for them to share any of their own fears.. and really establish a quality loving time no matter how brief... the truth is that it would be a tremendous healing for yourselves if you could make this connection on this level... take care

gail
You may hear me complain about my relationship w/my MIL but the most positive thing that has come of this is the bonding that occurred between her and my 2 yr old son. This would have never happened had she not moved in with us. They actually found a very strong connection in listening to her extensive collection of classical music. My son sits in her recliner and plays maestro and gives his sweet, angelic smile while doing so. It has been priceless to watch.
It has been tough when she doesn't feel well. She has to send him away now more she used to. He's too young to understand that Grandma needs her rest.
This is beautiful and very special... children are so pure... they are angelic beings that help heal the elderly many a time and it is good for him to know his grandmother and vice versa..

While your MIL may tire easily, children sense it as well.. they also sense more then we do sometimes.. their little minds and emotions aren't clutter and tainted by society, the culture, etc...

thanks for sharing this Melissa...

g
My father has been living with me now since last summer. I have a 18 yr old daughter who lives on campus, and a 14yr old son. They both have grown up with my dad and mom in/out of the hospital, and me rushing there frantic. Now that dad is living here, and they see him weakening, and in/out of the hospital, and watching me stress I think may be taking it's toll, but not sure how much. I don't know if it is because it has taken so much of my time, and my home is set up like a nursing home, or it is one living away from home for the first time, or my son becoming a teenager. I do have talks with them both, and they both keep asking me how I am doing, and I do keep myself pretty much undercontrol, but I know they can see I am exhausted. I pray that this experience of being my father and mother's caregiver will enrich their young lives, and not hinder it.
Hello Robin,

Well, what a blessing that both children are concerned about you.. but the truth is that you keep up a mask and try to not ask them for help when you need it.. this is what family is about being truthfully and supporting and assisting one another.. they aren't babies.. you didn't ask for this.. it is what it is.. as long as you come from your truth to whomever you interact with, you will have honest relationships.Children are strong and sensitive and they know when you are lying.. don't do it... you will find out down the road that they understood all along and when you finally listen to them you will find they would have been there for you if you had only reached out.

as for your siblings in the other post in another forum... I meant to write, listening to Wayne Dwyer the other evening, he said friends were gods way of making up for some of the lousy family

take care

gail
Gail, I have to say I do have wonderful friends that do make up for my sisters. I am no longer interested in trying to get them to love me for me. They actually have told me that they are jealous of me. What role does jealousy actually play in a family? There is no reason to be jealous. Quite frankly the only thing I am jealous about with them is the fact that they are going on with their lives, while I put mine on hold I find myself missing my friends a lot more lately because, I don't get to be with them as often or the same way because my closest friends are also my co-workers. I stopped working since dad has been here. Sounds crazy, but I really enjoyed my job.
Hello Robin,

Well this is wonderful news about your friends and not needing your siblings' approval.. what motivates the jealousy.. hard to guess at this point.. it can be so much.. they may think you have a great relationship with your parents and they don't.. that you are favored more, that you are better than.. who knows???????? Just be you... that's the best you can be... many of us with siblings go through similar situations.. just know you aren't alone in it...

take care
gail

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