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The end of an era

Monday, April 29, 2013

For those who don't already know, my son Frank was hit by a pickup truck when he was 2 1/2 and left totally disabled. He's completely helpless; in fact, he can barely talk any more. My ex and I split up when Frank was nine and he stayed with his dad because I couldn't give him the physical care he needs (besides, when he was an adolescent I thought it would be psychologically better to get the total-body care he needed from his dad instead of me). They've lived together ever since

Whatever problems my ex and I had with each other, he's always taken great care of Frank. I can forgive whatever happened to me as long as Frank was cared for.

My ex and I are both over 60 now and we both have health issues. It's finally time to find a situation for Frank where he's safe and comfortable, because we won't be able to care for him much longer. Besides, if anything happens to ex, it could be very dangerous for Frank. We agreed that he needs to be settled before that becomes an issue.

Ex is working with local agencies for the disabled to find him a new home. I've told him that as soon as he has a name and address, to let me know so I can Google to check their reputation and standing with the Better Business Bureau.

There are people who are going to revile us for doing this. But for Frank's comfort and safety, it's really the only choice we can make at this point.
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    It's brave and responsible for you and your ex to be planning for now and for the future. Seeing that your son has the care he needs is most important for him and for your peace of mind.
    1842 days ago
    Mary, anyone who would criticize you for doing what is best for Frank can suck eggs.. you and your ex are taking care of your son, and its much better to do it before an emergency happens. That's what good parents do. You're a great mom.
    1844 days ago
    Tough decision, but it really is in Frank's best interest, and that is what is important here. My sister and her husband will soon be making the same decision about their 47 year old son, Scott, who is autistic. They are both nearing 70, and like you, they have to do what will be in Scott's best interest. Frank and Scott are lucky to have parents who are focused on what is best for their sons.

    1844 days ago
    LI - it doesn't matter WHAT others think - the fact is that you and Frank's father are making a very wise and UN-selfish decision in Frank's better interests. I think it is an absolute credit to you and to his Dad that he has been taken care of so wonderfully all this time. He has been loved and cherished, and he will STILL be loved and cherished by his parents. It may actually benefit Frank far more than you could ever hope for. It is wonderful how great friendships can develop - even for the severely disabled.

    BIG hugs to you, to your Ex, and to Frank!

    Kris xxx
    1844 days ago
    You are wise and loving parents to take care of your child's needs. It is much better that you do so out of love for him than because you were forced and desperate. This way you can make informed decisions rather than rushed choices that you may regret. I admire you for that.
    1845 days ago
    I think you are doing the right thing for your son, even though it's a hard decision to make. Take care!
    1845 days ago
    My prayers will be with you as you find the right place for your dear Frank, where he will be safe and well cared for. it truly is a loving thing to do. God bless you.
    1845 days ago
    Reading through these comments, it is clear that your Sparkfriends know your heart for what it is - deep and pure. We know you wrestled with this decision and we love you for all the thought and care you put into it. If someone does say something hurtful to you, you know you can came back to us and we will heap on more love.

    It may be that Frank has a rough transition for a day or two - or even a week. I remember when someone I knew (20 years ago) moved a relative into a home because he was CP. He wouldn't look at anyone or smile or eat for awhile and everyone was frightened that they did the wrong thing. My then sister-in-law was the one who got him to turn around, just by being as normal as possible. She brought things from home. She read to him. She talked to him. She sat next to him and read her own book, quietly. She played the piano and sang. Eventually, he came around, because he really did understand, deep down, that he was hard on everyone's back... but that he was also still family.
    1845 days ago
    No one has the right to think anything of you. They are not in your shoes. I think that to find him a home before something happens is very courageous of you. It must be so hard and yet you will have peace of mind knowing that he is cared for. Maybe you could get it close enough so that you can still visit him.
    1845 days ago
    It's not a easy decision,but the right one.
    1846 days ago
    You are doing what is best for Frank, which is what I would expect from a loving mother like yourself. It cannot have been an easy decision, and no one else has the right to make any judgment about it. I pray a good, stable situation is found, that will allow Frank to be taken care of and also allow you to visit him on a regular basis.

    1846 days ago
  • GRAMMY_22
    You are doing the right thing for both your son and you. You will be able to visit him as much as you. I wish you the best of luck in finding a home for him.

    1846 days ago
    I can't understand how anyone could revile you. No one else is walking in your shoes.
    I wish you and your loved ones all the best!
    1846 days ago
    I totally understand why you are doing this. I am also quite sure it hasn't been an easy decision.
    1846 days ago
    You need to do what is best for all. May God give you strength to endure what you will have to go through.

    1846 days ago
    You know in your heart what must be done out of love for your son. Don't even think about what other people will say.

    I commend you and your ex for putting you son's needs first. I can only imagine your pain. All we want in this life is for our children to be happy....God Bless.

    Rosy emoticon
    1846 days ago
    I think your decision is made full of love. You are right in doing the very best thing for your son. You are being excellent parents. emoticon
    1846 days ago
    I think you are making a very wise choice and making when you have control of it. My biggest hope is that in addition to finding a caring home for Frank, you find one without stairs so you can easily visit him more often. My heart is with you.
    1846 days ago
  • LIS193
    You are the parents and will do what is best for Frank. It is very sensible to look at the future and his continuing care.
    Don't worry what others think - that is their problem! You do what is best for you. emoticon

    1846 days ago
  • ADZY86
    Thinking of you all. How strong you are. And it does sound like, just as you always have, you're putting your son's needs and confort first, which is what any loving mother would do. emoticon
    1846 days ago
    Sometimes reality is so difficult. Wishing you the best in your search for a good place for him.
    1846 days ago
    I can't imagine why anyone would find anything wrong with what you are doing. You're being very sensible planning ahead for your sons future. emoticon
    1846 days ago
    This is an extremely tough decision and I know you are going to find the right place. Poo-poo on anyone that says anything against what you are doing. You are taking care of your son and putting him in the safest environment you can. I applaud you.
    1846 days ago
    You and your ex are making a decision that only you two are able to make. Shame on those people who would judge. You are doing a very loving thing, taking of your son now rather than later. emoticon
    1846 days ago
    God bless you. I am praying that you find the perfect place for Frank. emoticon
    1846 days ago
    You are doing the right thing. Odds are he will outlive both you and your ex and this way you will know he is to be cared for. A lot less traumatic for him in the long run.
    1846 days ago
    You have Frank's best interest at heart and that's what matters most. Preparing for his future is the best of all.
    God bless,
    1846 days ago
    My prayers are with all of you as you research and make this difficult decision! emoticon
    1846 days ago
  • GAYLE-G-63
    You are doing the right thing! It will be easier for Frank to settle in while you and your ex-husband are here to help him. The rigth thing to do is not always the easiest... emoticon
    1846 days ago
    All I can say to you is this. You and your ex may have had your differences, but that withstanding, you have both shown love for your son and made the best LOVING decision possible for him. Anyone who would revile you for your choices and decisions is just plain ignorant . . . sorry for being blunt . . . so I would walk the other way from anyone who says derogatory things.

    HUGS to you and prayers. I can't imagine a Mom's heart that is more huge! emoticon
    1846 days ago
    While this is a difficult decision to make for you and your ex ,maybe it could work well for you since it was difficult. to visit Frank at your ex's home because of steps. Most care facilities are totally handicap accessible, maybe you will actually see more of Frank when he moves into his new home. Also holidays now can always be spent with your son without worry about the logistics. You are a loving Mother and will remain so, it is unselfish to think of his future needs now rather than waiting till its an emergency situation.
    1846 days ago
  • SAASHA17
    You know best..u are his mom...and u as parents are awesome for doing this for your son..its not an easy road but u guys did it!! Hugs

    1846 days ago
    you do whatever you have to. No one else lives in your shoes.
    1846 days ago
    A friend of mine in WI had to move her son out of her home, as she was moving to a nursing home. Sometimes it has to be done, and one can find a good place. Don't worry about what others think. It makes a lot of sense to me and hopefully both of you can visit him regularly and it will be a good place with good care.
    1846 days ago
    People are not his parents. You and your ex are and you are working together for the good of your son and that is all that matters. You are doing what you believe in your head and heart is the best for him no matter how difficult for either of you and that is what you have done since that fateful, tragic day now so many years ago. Put HIS needs before your own. People be damned and shame on anyone who judges you. And you are here now as you have both been to spend time in whatever home you find for him so that you can monitor and ensure that he is well cared for and know that he is in good hands. Do you have someone you know and trust to assign as his caretaker if something should happen to both you and your ex? I applaud your bravery and mother's love..... emoticon
    1846 days ago
    you are making sure your son is taken care of. enough said!
    1846 days ago
    All the best on this new journey for all of you and God bless.
    1846 days ago
    Why in the name of whatever's decent should *anyone* *revile* you for making such difficult, yet necessary, decisions? Please don't fret for one blessed moment over perceived complaints of *other people* - they DO NOT matter - your family, and especially Frank, are what matters most here - now and for always!

    In other words, the h*** with "other people"!

    I commend you for putting your concerns into words for others to read, and more importantly, to think about - this is "food for thought" of the highest order.......I am sure that there are others reading your blog who are faced with similar are to be commended for bringing this out into the light so people can think about things like this, rather than shove it into a corner and not think about it, naively hoping it will just go away......

    I wish your family the best!

    1846 days ago
    Thank you for sharing. It sounds like a wise choice. Wishing you best of luck in finding the best situation.
    1846 days ago
    Wishing you relief. May you be surrounded by loving support and miracles.
    1846 days ago
    i am pleased you have done what is right for your son..only preplanning will get it done right for sure..and we never know when our time is gonna have done all your life both of you and transcended all the hoohah i'm sure everyone has given you..and you and your ex have put aside differences for them and that has blessed him
    you know most peole are selfish and cannot do those things ythat are best..those are the tests of parenting for sure
    peace and blessings abound unto ya'll
    the lady mary
    1846 days ago
    Mary as a mother nearly sixty myself I know how hard it is to do something like this, how much you wish you could continue to be there doing for your son. But you are a courageous and intelligent set of parents, with recognizing your son's needs over your wishes, the reality of the situation and hunting down the best situation for him before its an instant necessity. Please be sure to actually see where you are putting him, check on how often they will clean him and take care of the removal of the resultant wastes of his bodily functions. And on the food situation. Don't just talk to staff and look at a menu. Talk to the patients there. As someone who spent several years in a really bad nursing home I know how they show one side to the family and then the patient suffers through something else completely. Talk to the residents and they may give you quite a different picture of the daily care.
    Some times doing the right thing out of love is the hardest thing you will ever do, and some people will be narrow minded and mean mouthed about it. Pay them as much attention as they deserve - exactly nothing. Those who mind don't matter and those who matter won't mind. emoticon emoticon
    1846 days ago
    Not every business registers with the Better Business Bureau so if they have complaints you won't see it there. I would check out Yelp. Also see how long they had their current name. I hired a contractor who said he was in business 30 years and it turned out his new business name was only 6 months old so no complaints. On his other business name we just happen to find out about he had many complaints.

    Good Luck with everything.
    1846 days ago
    Hey, as a parent I have always been at awe of those parents who have children which are severely physically or mentally disabled. I wondered whether I could face all the difficulties and if my love was strong enough to get through it all in such a situation. I have seen such love and dedication in those parents that I've always been humbled when I have been around them.
    I can only imagine the challenges and the difficulties and the love and the joy that you, your son and your ex husband have experienced.
    Don't even think for a minute you can be reviled by someone as you and your ex seek what you both truly believe is for the best for your son! If someone does, it just means that THEY have a problem and don't get how much you both love and care for your son.

    Hang in there and trust yourself.
    1846 days ago
    I agree don't listen to what others say. They have no idea the situation. You both are doing what is best for your son and that's what counts. ((((((BIG HUGS))))))
    1846 days ago
    Sane, humane for all concerned.
    1846 days ago
    Don't worry about what others think or say; in the end , it is your decision and believe me, you re doing the right thing. You do not know how long either you or your ex will live or your quality of life, therefore, this really is the best thing for your son. Good for you for thinking ahead. you are in my thoughts and prayers.
    1846 days ago
    I know this is probably one of the hardest things you and his dad will ever have to do. Make sure you get him into an excellent facility - don't accept second best. I know you will. It is good that you are thinking ahead - and not waiting until something happens.

    Lots of hugs - hoping it makes it a little easier.

    1846 days ago
  • ALICIA214

    That is a very difficult decision that you have to make but you are making the right one.
    You will make sure that your son will be placed in a good place where he will be well
    cared for but some one who does not know your son would not take as much care in
    finding him a good home. I hope all goes well for all of you. God Bless.
    1846 days ago
    Prayers for you, your husband and your precious son. I know how hard this decision is and applaud you for having the strength and courage to do this while you can make a transition instead of waiting until something happens and the move has to be INSTANTANEOUS and without a transition period.
    1846 days ago
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