Mum and Aunty Norrie
The multiple number (in Aunty Norrie’s mind) of the Carers visiting her became an obsession only a few months after the Home Care Carer’s programme was instigated. At the beginning it wasn’t the ‘number’ of Carer’s visiting which was a problem; it was that a Carer was calling in at all.
Often a distressed Norrie would phone and tell me that she didn’t want anyone calling anymore. That she wasn’t going to let anyone in to her home again.
I knew that most times she would enjoy a cup of coffee and chat in the morning with the Carer, but I also knew that sometimes she would be quite rude to the Carer and tell her, “Don’t come back. I didn’t need you or anyone else checking up on me!”
One of the Carers, a patient and kind lady named Karen, would keep in contact with me and let me know when Aunty Norrie had sometimes all but pushed her out of the unit.
It must have been very hurtful as Karen genuinely cares for Norrie, but she understood, that it is the disease which makes Norrie do these things.
That’s when I’d use the ‘Health Department’ to diffuse the situation.
“Norrie, sweetheart, I know you don’t want a Carer calling in to visit you in the morning, but if you don’t, the ‘Health Department’ will be worried about you and, if they are worried about you, they could decide that you can’t live alone anymore.”
And for another few days, a Carer could visit without the threat of ‘eviction’ by my little aunt Norrie!
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