My mother was moved from assisted living side of facility into Memory Care 8 months ago. About 5 months ago, one of the male residents, who is an unassisted walker like my Mom, started entering my mom's apartment (really just one room and bathroom) infrequently. There are no locks on doors or security cameras either. Then a month ago it started becoming more frequent. Sometimes he follows her after a meal, but occasionally he is lying in her bed when she returns. Three weeks ago, it escalated with my Mom (mid stage dementia) accusing the man of pushing her (no physical indication and she didn't fall) when she told him to get out. A report was filed with the state, by law.

Last week I talked with both the MC director and executive director about how to discourage the behavior. I emphasized that he's invading her privacy, and I'm concerned for her mental and emotional well being. They only had 2 suggestions: put up a physical barrier in front of her door, a "stop" sign of sorts or a paper STOP sign on her door. I opted for the latter, but said he needs to be monitored too.

Since this conversation, he has entered her apartment twice (I've documented each incidence). Before lunch my Mom was in her bathroom in her apartment, and he opened the door while she was still in there! (This is the 8th incidence!) I feel like somewhere in this gentleman's brain he has an inkling of what he's doing.)

My mother informed a staff member who said they would tell the director on Monday. I will also be calling them again about a better solution and I'll also call our state's ombudsman. I'm furious!

My Mom has anxiety each time this happens. Any other suggestions?

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Stay on top of them. I was worried about that issue when I moved my mom to MC, too, but she hasn't had any issues.

Either the staff monitors this man better, or he needs to go elsewhere. Is he going into other people's rooms? Is his room near Mom's? Perhaps one of them needs to be moved to another room (ideally him, but if he keeps thinking her room is his, it might be better to move her.)

If he's following her, then that's harassment, and the facility has a responsibility to prevent that or face repercussions. Talk to the executive director and tell them you want major changes made to protect your mom -- now.
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This is not your problem to solve it is theirs - suggesting you put up a paper sign or barricade your mother in her room is facetious and negligent on their part.
If they are not going to do anything I can only suggest you put a granny cam in her room to record these occasions and then take the results to local authority covering the licensing of the facility. This is totally unacceptable and if this man is doing this in her room how many others is he doing it in. It sounds like he needs to be restricted as to where he can go not other residents. I'm sorry your Mum is being upset by this resident's behaviour, he may well not be able to understand or help it, but it is up to the facility to manage his care properly.
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If he is in MC he has a Dementia. So telling him is going to be no good. He may think Mom is his wife. I don't see where a STOP sign would help, the man has Dementia.

My feeling, your Mom is paying big bucks for MC. She is not a patient she is a resident and as such needs to know she is safe. There is no reason, since you and she have complained, that when he starts to follow Mom a staff member can't redirect him. My Moms AL had locks on the room doors. If the resident looked it from the inside, staff had a key to get in. No problem in someone walking in. I guess MCs don't feel the need for locks.

If you get nowhere, then call the Ombudsman. I look at it as Moms rights are being overlooked.
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MargaretMcKen May 2021
Yes this is a solution, so long as the door opens without a key from the inside. I can't see any problems about requiring them to fit a lock like this, in view of the recurring problem.

Please make them take this seriously, My dreadful father defrauded his way into respite care, bragged to me that he had sex regularly with a woman with dementia who couldn’t remember it in the morning. Ha! Ha! Her family found out and removed her, from a nice facility where she was very happy, until my dreadful father moved in. Staff talked about ‘rights for sexuality to be respected’. My dreadful father did nothing that needed to be respected, and he knew exactly what he was doing. Just know that this can get a lot worse.
Question for you, the report that was filed, do you have a copy of it and do you know just where the report went?

if you do not have a copy, pls pls get one ASAP.

the report was it done as an internal document or was it actually filed with state MC regulatory agency and with the police &/or with APS?
if it wasn’t filed with law enforcement or APS, the MC isn’t doing anything, it’s going into their own echo chamber.
So the issue then becomes, do you want mom to stay there or move her? If it’s stay there, then he has to go and I’d file on my own a report with law enforcement and APS on your mother’s behalf. You include all communications with the MC in your complaint. The fact that he has entered her room and gets into her bed, I bet has charges that can be filed against him. Her room is her own personal private space that he’s violating. She has an expectation of privacy in her room. I’d be very concerned that his behavior is escalating and that he is going to make sexual advances on her. If your mom was touched by him would she tell you, it’s embarrassing & uncomfortable to speak about..... my goodness he’s in her bed, that’s what’s next, isn’t it? She’s a vulnerable adult. APS deals with vulnerable adults stuff.
You need to do something because you don’t want it where he tells others that your mom invited him into her room. If you think he knows what he’s doing, that will be his excuse.

Have you tried doing a Google search on this man? If your not up for this, ask one of your kids or grand kids to do deep dive on him. Believe me they can do a pretty accurate doxxing in a few keystrokes.

Im kinda surprised that this place hasn’t been more proactive for the safety and security of your mom and other residents. Like moving him into a room within direct eyesight of the nurses station. Is there something abt this guy that makes him untouchable.... like a relative of owner or staff? Politically connected?
Have you made friend with other families that might could shed light if there’s been other issues with this guy? There’s going to be a couple of spouses or kids that go super frequently and will know the all sorts of stuff on residents & staff, that they will be glad to share.
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I agree that it is their problem to solve not yours! They are taking the lazy way out. A woman would wander into my dad's room and he found her lying in his bed and got very upset. We called and talked to the care coordinator and the administrator and told them in no uncertain terms to deal with this woman and they did. Nice guy stuff doesn’t always work.
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This scares me..My mom in memory care also complained and we complained..her tormentor even came in during the night..they tried the usual measures right up until he opened her door...she attempted to get him out and he PUNCHED her in the face!! Yes..punched her!! We demanded a lock and key on a new floor unit!! As a former geriatric clinical staff worker I know if you insist they will change her floor or provide a lock on her door...these guys can be violent.. or move her to another facility asap!
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Maybe they should move your mother to a different room. He may have been "friends" with the prior occupant. It is also the facility's responsibility to discourage his behavior, not yours - especially since your mother finds it frightening. They need to find ways to curtail his movements from "tailing" her or entering her room. Ask the facility to find a way to keep him away from your mother.

I also suggest you look up the rules for the facility about harassment and sexual assault, since he is definitely harassing her and lying in her bed could be the first step to molestation.
Helpful Answer (8)

There is a very inexpensive wedge type alarm door stop you can purchase that can be put on the floor of the inside of your moms door. If the door opens in from the outside the alarm will go off. This will alert your mom and the staff and scare off the wandering gentleman. It’s very effective! If that’s not allowed get your mom a personal one she can wear around her neck.
That said, I think the staff is being negligent in deterring this man. Let them know it must be addressed and stopped immediately or you will take legal action. Your mothers safety and well being is being violated. Keep us posted!
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I’m a little confused as to why you have been given the responsibility for something that is a residence care management issue.

We all know - COVID, but when it comes down to something that has caused this kind of annoyance, I’d be wondering what else could be happening. Do you know if the offender’s family has been asked to control HIS meandering?

I caught this at least once before the lockdowns, and when I reported it, our staff had FITS, and jumped into action.

My LO is a tiny feisty little bit of the devil, and it didn’t unnerve her a BIT when her space was invaded, but STILL, where’s the staff?
Helpful Answer (7)
jacobsonbob Feb 2021
The OP ARYoung probably hasn't been GIVEN this responsibility, but simply realizes care facilities aren't always the swiftest to solve a problem or even to pay attention to it. One has to be at least a "squeaky wheel" and sometimes the mechanic as well!
Being new to all the memory care facilities and rules, since I placed my 68 year old husband in our local facility due to his moderate stage alzheimers, I've since heard many stories from friends and families of what has happened, and continues to happen inside the units. Keep in mind, everyone placed in these special needs units are there for a reason, they ALL have dementia/alzheimers. And they all are free to roam inside their unit building only, even in each others' rooms. My husband was always complaining about women coming in and going through his things, and taking things out of his room. Due to Covid, I had never seen his room, but only from viewing from his outside window. There were times that I would see various residents come in his room and leave. Unfortunately, my husband pushed a woman one day and caused injury. It was all caught on camera since it happened in the hallway near his room. The facility nurse called me and told me they had to protect the other women there, and had no choice to move them to another one of their parent facilities. It was stressful at first, but he is doing much better and the other new place since there are men in his unit that he can chat with. The older facility was all women, and it got to him with them arguing all the time. That's what Alzheimers does.....when it strikes at the time, the resident acts upon what he wants to do. I'm glad that the facility took action, yet I wished they could have monitored the special needs units more when I mentioned to them that the women were upsetting him. These places are short-staffed, but I agree that there should be extra security to protect everyone, residents and staff members. Others who experienced the same issues with their loved ones testified that their family resident in the facility would sometimes go to another's room and lay in bed with them. Maybe thinking they were still with their loved one. 75% of males with alzheimers get angry with this horrible disease. That's the main reason I placed my husband in the facility, after caring for him over 6 years.
Good luck with your situation. Put the responsibility on the facility, not yourself. Maybe get the state involved as well. I'm sure they don't want to pay attorney fees. We're paying high dollar, so these places need to meet our requirements!
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