my grandmother

United States
June 3, 2007 6:58pm CST
i just dont get nursing homes. my grandmother is in one and she hasn't spoken in about two weeks. she is doing normal things other than speaking. she isnt even trying to. that is not like her. she is a talker. we have never been able to shut her up. so no one does anything there. (i am over 2 hours away so i am not there much). today, the nursing home found her totally unresponsive, unable to wake up. so she is now in the hospital. she had a t.i.a. about 5 yrs ago (mini stroke) and i have been telling my mother and she has agreed that it sounds as if she has had a stroke. no one at the nursing home has listened. she isnt opening her eyes at all, not speaking. nothing. how can the nursing home allow this to get to this point without getting intervention? anyone deal with nursing home issues before that just didnt seem right? she isnt going to be here much longer. she has been in and out of the hospital for months now for different reasons. it is sad to say but i havent been able to go see her since we moved here. we live over two hours away. the last time i saw her, she was still doing not too bad. now she is terrible and i have a lot of guilt for not trying to go there. with 4 kids it is hard to travel. my kids dont do well in the car. my 17 month old gets really car sick and my 2 yr old fights to get out of his car seat and he is just miserable. so we dont go far, ever. but now the guilt is setting in. plus we had that serious auto accident and i dont like to drive far. but it doesnt matter what excuses i have, i still feel guilt.
4 people like this
8 responses
@mrsbrian (1951)
• United States
4 Jun 07
I have worked in a nursing home for 15 years, im not sure why you are blaming the nursing home for your grandmothers health.I understand you said she wasnt talking but that dose not indicate anything unhealthy has happend, also the nursing home staff could not have known in advance that you grandmother was going to have a stoke. what dose the hospital say about what happend was it a stroke? what did you want the nursing home to listen to did you tell them she was having a stroke,I can tell you that many times the nurse will call the dr. and he will tell us to just watch her for anything else to happen even if we think the patient should be seen it isnt up to us it is the drs. and famiys call.
• United States
4 Jun 07
I dont think she is blaming the nursing home for her grandmother having a stroke. She is blaming the nursing home for not noticing sign and symptoms that were abnormal to this patient. If you have worked in a nursing home that long, unless you are at one of the few that is well staffed and managed, you know alot of things get missed, or go unnoticed. Lets not be naive about it, nursing homes are in a terrible state of almost disrepair. There are so many issues I wouldnt even know where to begin.
3 people like this
@mehale (2200)
• United States
4 Jun 07
I think what she is saying about the nursing home is that they should have noticed the change in her habits and actions. I would also have to say they should have noticed the changes. However, if they are understaffed in the nursing department - both RNs, LVNs, and CNAs that would probably explain why they didn't. I also have worked in nursing homes for numerous years as a CNA. They are notoriously short handed and there is never enough time to get all the work done. Unless the aids really pay attention to their residents changes are easily missed.
2 people like this
• United States
4 Jun 07
well first off..mrsbrian...i never blamed the nursing home so you can stop being so defensive. i didnt need a nasty post in such a bad situation but there always in one in the bunch that has no feelings for others. thank you to krislyn, melissaruth and mehale for telling her like it is. i wasnt blaming the nursing home for her possible stroke. i was upset that they didnt do anything about the symptoms for weeks. even after being told by family members that something is wrong. she has been in this nursing home for about a year so they shouldve noticed something without us even saying it. as of right now, i dont have test results yet. today i should know more. i appreciate the kindness krislynn, melissaruth and mehale. mrsbrian could have been a little nicer.
1 person likes this
@mehale (2200)
• United States
4 Jun 07
I am so very sorry for what you are having to go through. I have had many bad experiences with nursing homes in the past - both as a family member and as an employee. My Great Grandmother was dropped and her hip was broken as a result. We lost her not too long after that. I have also seen many cases working as a nurses aid where if I had not noticed that something seemed to be "off" and pushed the nurse into checking it might have gotten really out of hand. This is no excuse, but most nursing homes are really short staffed when it comes to their nursing staff. This causes many such problems that could have been avoided. We are dealing with a nursing home now as my Mother in Law is in one now. She has alzheimers disease and it has progressed to the point that she does not always recognize us or know where she is. The biggest problem we are having with them now is that they keep allowing her to call here to get someone to come get her when she thinks she is in some other town or city. The fact that she calls is not the problem, but when she is disoriented like that it upsets her more when we try to do the home's job and tell her where she is. This only aggravates the situation and makes it harder on her. Check and see if the home has any nursing shortages. That may be where your problem stems from. I will pray for you.
2 people like this
• United States
4 Jun 07
thank you for your kindness. i am sorry that you have had so much to deal with too. i know a lot of people that have had bad experiences with nursing homes.
1 person likes this
@kimttrix (108)
• Philippines
4 Jun 07
i love to listen to the stories and the words of my grandparents. its really inspiring in the sense they are not just telling stories but teaching us some ways of life. now i cant hear any words from them, not even a single one. cause God took him. i know i need to be sad, by that life. But the words that my grandfather planted on me grew, and now i become a good person the way he wants me to be. so try to treat them nicely cause you'll never know the time. and you'll never know when the time miss, you'll never hit again.
@KrisNY (7609)
• United States
7 Jun 07
Maybe it’s possible for just you to go see your gram- or even take your oldest daughter with you- Possibly your husband can watch the other kids- This way you can go and see her and say your good-byes. I’d hate for you to feel this guilt for a long time if she passes and you don’t get there. I’ve been there- But if there is no way you can- stop beating yourself up- Guilt is not a good thing to keep in your heart- It leads to depression- I don’t know much about nursing homes but you would think that if she all of a sudden changed from being “chatty Kathy” to not talking at all- they would have her checked out- How sad- Is there any family still close by that goes to see her and checks on her? I wish you and your family well wishes!
@leelmj (5)
• China
4 Jun 07
i also haven't seen my grandmother for several months. i miss her so much. she is so old but still healthy. she loves us everybody.
@shambuca (2560)
• United States
4 Jun 07
It's not your fault- some nursing homes are horrible, the only thing I would have done differently is maybe see about moving her closer to you. It is also possible that after the stroke she started having more problems due to the stroke that no one could do anything about. You could play the what if game forever- it won't change the outcome- trust me I have been there.
@azimsay (546)
• India
4 Jun 07
My grand mother is really grate.She is so old and thin but yet she is very strong.She is doing all work by herself.She is making mealto allof us.She is helping my mother to ready me for the school. At night time she is telling us fair stories.Iam telling her all good and bad things every day.
• United States
4 Jun 07
Don't feel guilty. People do the best they can with their loved ones. No one likes to put their loved one into a nursing home but sometimes it can not be helped. As far as her not talking. Keep in mind no matter how much your grandmother understands that is what you needed to do because of circumstances. The most important thing to do for her is reinforce your love for her. Even if they don't say it everything that they have is taken away. They have no say so in what they do. If you need to get a baby sitter do so. Your grandmother is important and in her eyes you have shelved her out of the way. Get a friend to make the drive with you and make sure you have enough time to spend with her. I have seen circumstances as you talk about. People get brought into nursing homes and I have seen the decline of health because they think they are not loved anymore and they are put to the side. Send her cards and call her on the phone. The human touch of family in a loved ones life that lives in a nursing home is very important. I work at a nursing home and I see a lot that families don't realize. So I ask that you don't take offense at what I have said. Elderly folks are such precious people and they have such a short time left on this earth.