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Having an inactive body and mind, as well as no self worth is the fastest way to the grave. Let them do what they want (or can) to stay as an active member of society. Even if that society is your home.
My husband’s aunt, however, is 89 and lives in her own home and does all her own housework and shopping. She has been a widow for 2 years, but her daughter is very involved. Still, she does her laundry (in the basement), and takes care of everything around the house.
The age itself is not the deciding factor – it is abilities, health, attitude.
My mother is about to move-in with me. She is still doing her own chores. I told her it is my opinion that she needs to have some chores and that we'll work out what they'll be. Initially, she was against it, thinking she might be asked to cook (which she hates) and I know part of her belligerence on the subject has to do with her fear that I'll pick things for her that she won't like.
When she's visited, she sets the table, strips her bed when I do the laundry and similar things and I think she'll continue to be willing to do these things. But I also know she feels like she's not needed by anyone, anymore, and I'm hoping a few routine chores will help her more than they help me.
Sometimes, when she's visiting, she'll sit around talking about how she's such a burden and how she makes more work for me. But I then point-out that she helped set the table, which is helpful, and that means that she really has chipped-in to help around the household -- so, I point out that I do do more dishes when she's here but she helps in other ways to even it out. And, when I do this, the light bulb goes on over her head and she admits that she didn't see it that way, but that if she does a little bit where she can that she's chipping-in, after all.
Once, again, might not be your situation, but just telling my own story in case it helps someone else think of ways to deal with the situation.
If she really wants to in order to be considered "vital" it is a good thing. If she is pretending out of some sort of guilt, then it is a bad thing. Has she asked you to allow her to perform any duties? If not, please let her get some rest and explain to her she needn't be concerned about not earning her way. Namaste
What ever they used to do they can still do with cuing. Last thing you need is to wait on someone hand and foot. what is so hard about making a bed? it is not that older [eople need to earn their keep, but older people need to feel valued and sometimes we are defined or have identity through what we do.
An older person is still alive. My 86 (almost 87) year old worked outside the home until she was 82, by choice.
It is her room every thing in there is hers from her own home, pictures of her and her husband, when they were younger and older are all around, her husband died 11 years ago. What harm does it do anyone...?
Are there things you can retrieve from her old life that are meaningful? Pictures, chair, lamps, rugs -- that you could create a little of her past home in a corner or her room in your home? She is grieving and it is very tough to just give it up and start over.
Also, maybe get her involved at senior center or other activities and groups where she can meet new people and develop new friendships and activities outside the family if she is able.
My point is that many seniors simply do not want to go out and be social. I am too much of a bossy boots to be made to do what is good for me.
Owl Eyes please stay with us you have some excellent experience to share. Your rehab and psych experience will be especially helpful.