Until this year, you've always held Thanksgiving at your mom's house. She has dementia and crowds are suddenly an issue. She cannot stand having people in her home. She also hates going to other people's homes. How do you handle Thanksgiving this year?
Trim the Guest List
How many people will your mom allow in her house before she's uncomfortable? Cut the guest list down to a level where she will be comfortable. This may mean you celebrate Thanksgiving with your mom one day and your sibling does a day later. If it allows everyone to have a day with your mom, the wait's worthwhile.
Skip Her House and Head to a Restaurant
You can book a room at her favorite restaurant and turn it into an early dinner out. She'll be in a location where she feels safe, but everyone is able to spend an hour or two with her. Pick a restaurant that makes her comfortable. It needs to be a place she's frequented in the past. You don' t want to introduce her to a brand new setting when she's already feeling anxious.
To ensure the restaurant can accommodate you, make these plans as far in advance as possible. Explain the issue and ask if there is a private dining room you can book for a few hours. You might have to be flexible and schedule it for a day before or after Thanksgiving. Be prepared to be flexible.
Give Her a Safe Space to Retreat To
If you do have to have Thanksgiving on the same day, set your mom up with a quiet location where she can retreat if the gathering becomes too much. You can all take turns and spend time with her in a quieter room away from the noise.
Think About What She'll Really Remember
It's tough not to have your mom with you for the holiday gathering. If she struggles with dates and times, she won't likely know it's Thanksgiving. You can always hold a Thanksgiving meal at your house with usual family members. After the holiday, you can host a quieter, stress-free meal with just your mom.
Dementia poses many challenges you don't expect. When you're a family caregiver for your mom, you learn a lot about making adjustments. One thing you can't ignore is yourself. You need time to be social, unwind, and get your own errands taken care of. Elderly care services help you achieve that.
Find out more about the services available for Alzheimer's care. Call an elderly care agency to talk to a professional.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care in Danbury, CT, or the surrounding areas, please contact SYNERGY HomeCare of Danbury, CT at 203-731-2544.