My 86 yr old father with dementia (doctor says early stages, but I'm not sure what that means) and does not comply with most anything that is in his best interest. I've done everything within my power to help him stay in his home. Hired caregivers (CNA) to dispense meds 2xs a day. I fill pill boxes, they just put them on the table and wait for him to take them.
I live about 100 miles away and if I thought about him being in this condition when I moved away some 20yrs ago, I would have done things much differently. Like purchased a home with a room downstairs or a single level. He has mobility problems. His legs are super stiff. He will not lay down (approx 6 months or more since he's been in his bed). He sleeps in chairs and is up doing his normal OCD activities throughout the day and night. He refuses to use his walker and stumbles around like a drunk saying he doesn't need it. I have camera in the home and I'm so exhausted with keeping an eye on him day and night.
He refuses to bathe. I had Bathfitters rip out the tub for a nice walk-in shower a few years ago. First, it was okay. Now, I should have left the old tub like it was. Yes, the one he was about to fall through. I was only able to do this because he was placed in rehab for 30 days because of a fall. That gave me the opportunity to clean house. Had ramp installed and bars down the hallway; and much more. So much to make it accessible, but according to him I can't do anything right. I'm a 40 year old educator with a Doctorate, but have remained on a teacher's salary and schedule to accommodate his needs and not compromise a potential higher level position. I feel defeated. I try to remain calm because this is not the man who raised me. I don't want to put him in a facility, but some days I just want to throw him head first.
If I see something on the camera that should be addressed, I will call and just have conversation to slowly lead into what he should not do. And of course he lies about it, not remembering I told him I was putting a camera on the shelf. What's sad is that I have a RN sister that lives 3 miles away (but she has her own life - her words) and doesn't help like "I" think she should. I have DPOA and I'm on this bank account (i pay all bills and take care of appointment). If he comes closer to where I reside, I can maybe pursue other career opportunities, but he refuses to leave the house, except for appointments.
I travel there every other weekend at most. I cook small meals for the freezer and also pay for meal on wheels to deliver a hot lunch three times a week. But, he still eats like a bird and refuse to eat sometimes. Says he's not hungry. I'm an online adjunct professor as well. I'm always up and just want to rest, but I don't want to give up on him. There is so much more I can share, but I know you'll get it. If I call him now, he starts screaming about how much work he has to do, but just sits all day and occasionally goes outside. If I see him about to fall out of the kitchen chair, I will ring the phone to alert him and will hang up before he answers. He blames me for everything that is right, saying it's wrong.
How can I convince him to shower? There are bars and a very sturdy chair with arms.
How can I convince him to get in the bed or put his legs up? He used the footstool for newspapers and his bed for all clothes, jazz cd and whatever else it can put back on it after I've taken them off.
The caregivers try to help, but he gets angry at time for no reason. Accusing them of taking his pills home. I tell them not to press the issue and just leave them on the table. He take a few bp bills, flomax, prescribed vitamins and a tylenol arthritis. His bp is pretty good on all visit and we check it when it's in a okay mood. Averages 130/80.
He's weak from no real rest and not eating properly, despite all the food options. He hates drinks like ensure, but loves a milkshake and bananas. I was thinking of having the caregivers make him a high calorie/protein chocolate banana shake a few time per week, but I would need to get the a blender or bullet. He won't drink it if they make it at his house. I'd have to get them plastic cups w/ lids, like it's purchased from the store. I don't know.
Also, he's not lying. Lying implies a thought process that is simply no longer happening in his head.
Read "Being Mortal" by Atul Gawande. It is a superb guide to keeping perspective.
The thing is, you have two choices - and bear in mind that eventually the time must come when you won't like any of the choices available and will just have to pick the least worst.
You can accept the risks that your father exposes himself to, until such time as he has demonstrably lost capacity and you have the legal right to make decisions for him.
Or, you can force the issue now and coax/frogmarch him into long term care. What are your main reservations about doing that, by the way? - are they yours, or his? There is no failure in placing someone in a well-chosen facility.
But the sacrifices you are making at the moment, as well as damaging to your own future security, are frustrating for you and not benefiting him. I note that you are very careful not to criticise your sister, quite right too and well done; but all the same it is going to become increasingly difficult for you not to resent her different approach and risk your relationship with her.