You’ll find this blog packed with helpful stuff – if you already, or are about to, look after an elder relative or friend.
Even if you just ‘pop in’ to see them from time to time.
Still with me? Then let’s do introductions…
Maud is… the name my oldest friends gave me about 20 years ago (I also go by the name of Grandma Bonkers, but that’s another story). I’ve always worked full time yet have also ‘acquired’ (what is the right term?) an additional primary caring role, as many of us do. Like many other carers, I’m also an enthusiastic wife, mum, step mum, step grandma, daughter, aunt and sister. I live in west Buckinghamshire.
Mum is… in fact my mother-in-law Marj. Marj was born, raised, married, worked and lived in ‘the Potteries’ (Stoke on Trent) her whole life. With her husband Jack, they raised a son and a daughter. In her spare time she painted and loved walking her dog Sally, an indulged retriever cross.
Despite living independently since her Jack died 12 years earlier, Marj started to need support. So Marj sold her house and joined my family and I in her own annexed studio flat (not as easy as it sounds of course, see blog post ‘moving in together‘).
A diagnosis of mixed vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease two years later means that nowadays Marj has increasing hands-on help from care workers and I throughout the day and night.
Marj has lived with us for over eight years. Our intention in writing this blog is to share what we’ve learned over the years. Working full time, I (Maud) couldn’t easily find the information, perspective and help that could have prepared and helped us. In fact I was (and still am) often bewildered and frustrated by the care ‘system’.
I hope to make things a heck of a lot easier for you. I’ll share the essentials and the things not to worry about, the pathways and short-cuts to support. My intention is constructive, as too often in the news caring, carers and the cared for are not presented positively.
And finally, I’m still learning, so I’d also love to hear from you too.
If you’re caring for a partner, considering bringing a parent or other senior into your home or if your ‘remote’ caring responsibilities are increasing and you want to know what might come next and where to find help, I hope you will find this blog helpful.
PS All views are our own unless otherwise stated. Not for profit, we’re not paid for anything we write.