The farm house

The farm house

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Choose Before You Lose Your Memory.

It's been some time since I've written. Partly due to time constrictions and partly because I wonder if what I would like to share is something someone wants to read. Is there something of value that anyone can glean from my outpouring of thoughts?

Well this time, I will encourage you to think about retirement homes. Yes, seriously. Retirement homes and long-term care facilities. There is a difference between the two, chiefly affordability.My Mother's dementia has put me in a position where I have had to choose from a few long-term care facilities in which she may potentially live out the rest of her days. Could be years. Who knows? Fact of the matter is that you must have a need for medical attention in order to be considered for placement. Placement is the catch word here. All residents of Ontario are entitled to care in these facilities. You can be subsidized if your pension or other source of income does not cover the basic cost. IF and that's a Big IF you desire a private or semi-private room, you pay up to $2500/month!!

Retirement homes seem like an elitist club after quoting that last number. An 8oo sq ft room can run upwards of $2700/month!! Bigger room, higher the cost as well as medical needs, add more to the cost.So these are your golden years. If you were fortunate or insightful enough to have a career that provided a pension or you managed to put savings away for such a time, I congratulate you. $3000/month is a working income not pension income for most folk I know...

My Mother insists she is going home. She is currently in Elisabeth Bruyere undergoing rehab for another stroke she has suffered. Her right hand and arm have been affected. I do believe it is time for her to move to  a safer place where she will receive the supervision and medical care she needs. No more living alone in an isolated area... My problem now is financing. The social worker at the rehab hospital says that patients here don't go to long-term care from their facility. So I pondered who will pay for a retirement home because I insist she not return home.

In saying that I realized that nobody seems to be communicating to one another as far as care workers go. Also, I realized just how stressful this all is. I will have to sell her home despite her having a decent pension but debt abounds and she will have a fit-she doesn't know what day it is nor can she give herself her insulin anymore. Yes, the guilt of having to make a decision that you know will not win you any favors. Damned if you do and damned if you don't! To me, safety and quality of life should be primary.

 So, I did lose my temper when I was informed that I must bring her clothes and take her down so she can book a phone and tv... Well, Why could they not take her down for this?? I informed them to not order me again. I live over an hour from my Mother's home, an hour from the hospital, I work full-time and I have a ride in to work , I operate a farm and I can't drive at night so just when in the HELL do you think I'll run over there?? I sounded just like my Mother.

Many people ask me if I am concerned about possibly suffering from dementia like my Mother. I say no. I do many things that keep my mind active including writing this blog post. I think back and she has suffered from it for years but had hidden it well enough, coped through the loss of many sets of keys and misplaced credit cards. No, I'm pretty sure I am alright. time will tell on this also.

Meanwhile, please take the time to consider your finances for your golden years. Selling your house to fund your retirement home costs is not out of the ordinary. At least this way you may choose where you live instead of having it put upon you and not being the most desirable locale.


  1. I work for a fiduciary so deal with clients facing this, though fortunately not yet with any of our parents. There are no easy answers or fixes; it is just HARD!

  2. Hard on so many levels. Phone calls everyday. I am tempted to start logging the time and bill them if I could. I have also taken time off to deal with some of the issues. an uphill battle on an unworn path; the hill seems to get taller though...