Mum-in-law should be in a home

My wife’s widowed mum was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s three years ago, when she was 82. My wife (we’re both retired) is over there every day, but it’s getting that mum-in-law is going out in the street, in her nightie, and isn’t eating properly, despite all the carers she has. Sometimes, she just won’t let the carers in. I say she should go in a home, but my wife says that’s a heartless thing, and she could never do that to her old mum, as it’d break her heart, as she just wants her to end her days in her own home. It’s a bone of contention between us. The doctor agrees with me, but my wife won’t listen.

Barbara says: If it helps, I do understand. I had to finally decide that residential care was the best thing for my old mum. It broke my heart, and hers, and for the first six weeks she blamed me for making that decision. I made it because I wanted her to be professionally looked after. That was five years ago. Today, she’s flourishing, happier than she’s ever been, and her Alzheimer’s is no worse. I told my son that when I’m old and fragile, in whatever way, I want three cooked meals a day, and company, and fun. Choose the right residential care, very carefully, and she’ll be settled.