Niece in Trouble

by Catherine
(Ca)

My 89-year-old aunt is suffering from dementia. In December of 2010 I was given a referral for her to have a neurological evaluation. I made the appointment, but when I called to remind her of her appointment the day before, she refused to go.


She and her 89-year-old husband were living 2 hours from me. Consequently, I canceled the appointment. Over the period of several months I was receiving concerned calls from neighbors regarding her behavior. Periodically she would call and say she needed to see me or she needed me there.

Over the course of the last couple of years I would periodically invite she and her husband to consider moving into a condo that was close to me. Last September they agreed to make the move. I vacated tenants of six years from the condo and with the help of my children, husband and sister, over the course of five weeks we drove four hours back and forth packing. We moved them to the condo on the first of December.

Also, right around the end of November her primary care physician gave her a prescription for Aricept. It took a couple of months for the drug to actually help with her memory. Since that time her mind has improved considerably.

She and her husband are now demanding to be moved back to their home, which has been leased out for two years to the daughter, her husband and two small boys, of the neighbor that was close to my aunt and her husband at the time of all the trouble with the memory and strange behavior.

My husband and I made a very generous monetary offer to the new tenant if they would vacate the lease. Although they want my aunt and her husband to be happy, they do not want to move out of the house as they have just gotten settled.

The house was in very bad condition and this young couple put a lot of effort, work and expense in to cleaning it up before they moved in.

I'm in awe as to what to do with this elderly couple, who, at this point in time are miserable living in this condo and becoming a bit abusive verbally.

I have read the Aricept is only temporary and the dementia will continue to progress.

I want them to be happy, but do not know how to convince them that I can't do anything about getting her old house back until the lease expires, which, at that time, will probably be too late.

I would appreciate any suggestions you can make.

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by: Anonymous

Hi, I feel for you as I know what it's like to bend over backwards and then not be appreciated at all. You have to be firm and remind the old folks as to how much work everyone went to in order to help them.

Second, call Senior Support Services in your area and see if you can arrange a visiting program or something that will draw them out to be a bit more involved in their new area. Senior support will even arrange transport to functions or shopping.

Often they just have too much time to sit and think about how bad they've got it no matter where they are. I doubt it has much to do with their location.

Good luck going forward....remember no one has to take abuse and everyone even you deserves to be appreciated for what good you do.

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