Tag Archives: Caring for the Elderly

The Sense of Helplessness that Accompanies Me, in Caring for You

Been feeling it, quite a lot lately, actually, with the progression of your dementia, we’d placed you on meds, took you to a TON of supposedly-helpful classes, and now, they’re kicking you out, because you’d become, disruptive to others, and couldn’t concentrate for a long time…

The sense of helplessness that accompanies me, in caring for you, nobody can and will EVER understand, for I’m one, fighting, this war that I know I can’t EVER win!  But, I keep, fighting on, took you to the doctors, and watched him, wrote out that one MORE prescription slip, for your meds, and, I’d wanted to ask him, is there any way, that I can, slow down the progression, but, the words, got swallowed down, and, it’d tasted bitter, as they, trickled down my throat.

The sense of helplessness that accompanies me, in caring for you, why am I the one, who must handle it all?  When you’d stayed with me, you’d talked of your other kids, as if, I don’t even matter, how, how can you forget me, I am, your caretaker, your other kids are either way too busy, or they don’t want you, only me, I was, the only one who took you in, and this, is how you repay me?

The sense of helplessness that accompanies me, in caring for you, does it ever, go away?  I know I shouldn’t, and I feel, extremely guilty for it, but, why can’t you, just die already?  You’d already, outlived your husband, isn’t that enough???

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Filed under Coping Mechanisms, Cost of Living, Dementia/Deterioration of the Mind, Despair, Life, Moods, Emotions, & Feelings, Properties of Life, Story-Telling, Vicious Cycle

In Handling of the Elderly, Caring is Not the Only Method, You Must Use Some Kind Tricks as Well

Techniques must be utilized here, from the Front Page Sections, translated…

Based off of research statistics, in a decade’s time, Taiwan will march into a nation, composed of elderly people.  One in every four people here will be sixty-five and older.  And, due to the low birth rate, Taiwan’s population growth had become negative, and so, we must prepare early, otherwise, depending on foreign hired helps to care for our aging elderly is not a long-term solution, and once the foreign hired helps are retreated, the elderly in Taiwan may be left, all alone.

The markets for elderly, other than the retirement villages, the nursing homes, there’s this pressing need for care centers, like a “daycare for elderly persons”, and this, would be the direction of caring of the elderly population in the futures; and, on the front of home care, we can take after Japan, with the staff members from the hospitals to make home visits, and, considering how able-bodied the elderly are, and, assign the needed level of assistance to them.

The hospitals across the nation are filled with elderly people every single day, picking up medications, lucky are those elderly who can still go to the hospitals for the doctors’ visits, but, what of those elderly who are immobilized?  Take for instance, Japan, because of the limited resources, and staffs available, the hospitals are sending doctors to the homes to make the visits, to treat the elderly persons.  This method is similar to how the doctors made their rounds in the distant regions, or the midwives, heading into the homes, to help with births.

There is a great demand for the personnel for elderly care in Japan, and yet, they’d placed a restriction for the foreign bedside assistants, primarily, because the foreigners may have communication difficulties with the elders.  The caretakers of the elderly in Japan must pass through a series of examinations, tests, before they’re able to be hired.  The industries are now, starting to pay more attention to the care of elderly, for instance, the Benesse Company of Japan, which originally made items, tailored to the needs of young children, are now, involved, in the setting up of nursing homes for the elderly, to provide a higher level of care; and, the Watami Restaurant got involved in the deliveries of meals on wheels for the elderly, with the fifty, sixty year old aging persons, making the deliveries for the elderly of ages seventies, eighties, because there would be no gaps between the generations; the Sanko Group set up the Sanko School, to train workers in the areas of childcare and elderly care.

Taiwan is primarily relying on foreign hired helpers to care for the elderly, but, there’s a risk, once the legislatures are amended, the foreign hired helpers would be forced out, or that they wouldn’t want to come, then, what, happens to the elderly, waiting to be looked after?  And so, in the areas of elderly care, the government must come up with policies, that fitted the needs of the modern day world, so the younger generations wouldn’t have to head back to their hometowns, to care for their ailing, and aging parents.  Especially, the elderly may have different levels of dementia, without a person close by, watching them every day, they may get into trouble, or get lost.

In the caretaking of the elderly population, I would suggest, that the government needed to give out incentives, and encourage the local enterprises to get more involved, there’s an endless potential of elderly as consumers, and, set up the “temptation factors”, so the enterprises feel that they are not tied up and bound, if they get involved in the market of older adults, so they’d be more willingly, to get involved.

Based off of the situation here in Taiwan right now, the bar for entering the servicing of elderly is quite high, and the government must lead the bigger enterprises to get involved first.  For instance, the government can find land, and, the enterprises can get into building elderly care centers in the communities, and the locations would be close to where the elderly persons lived, that way, the elderly wouldn’t feel estranged in an unfamiliar environment.  From before, the elderly would often reject moving from their homes, into nursing homes, or the need to sell their old home, to move into the nursing homes, making them start over in a brand new way of life, making adjustment more difficult for them.

And, the nursing homes should not be set up in the distant mountains, that would make the elderly people who live their feel like they were exiled, and their families may only be able to go and visit, every once in a long while, for the elderly, this, would make them feel awful.  Actually, in Japan, and Australia, they’d started setting up the nursing homes near the metro areas, where transportation is available, for instance, right next to the MRT stations, so the children of the elderly can go visit them often.

I lived next to a temple when I was younger, and, right next to the temple, was an old folks’ home, and, there would be elderly men and women who’d waken me up, at five in the morn, to go out on strolls with them, because children and older adults are naturally matched with each other.  And so, it would be great, if the government can rebuild the torn down schools into nursing homes, to set it up as a care center for the community; and train the younger generations, and, the technical schools should also have related majors, to connect the industry, with the schools, so the students can make what they learned into good use.

There is a company that used ozone to kill the germs, that are involved in the bathing industries for older adults, because the elderly have mobility difficulties, the company had that set up the bath to have a door, and, after the door opens, and the elderly gets in, then, the bathwater with ozone is pumped into the tub, and, it can quickly disinfect the elderly, to reduce the chances of them, getting infected by bacteria of viruses.

Death, is something we all must face, the Japanese television programs would often televise educational programs on how elderly are dealing with death, telling the older adults in the population, what they need to prepare themselves for, upon entering into nursing homes, or how to plan out their final affairs beforehand, at the same time, you can start looking into the companies, or people who are involved in such matters.  Through the televised programming, the elderly will take it to be normal, and, thus, reject talking about the matters less.

Looking at Taiwan, we have difficulties, talking of death, we refused to face, to prepare for it, and once it happens, there would often be disagreements, and difficulties.  We shouldn’t just care for the elderly in the population now, we must use tactics, to get through to them.

Caring for the elderly, must occur through the levels of the psychological, facilities, caretakers, as well as the organizations, we must examine each of these areas closely and thoroughly, and find the best possible way, prepare ahead of times, so, we can be better prepared, for the coming of the age of the elderly populations.

This, is all on readiness, and, the writer is right, on the matter, that you can’t just offer the care, you must also, find ways that are more viable, but because, here, there’s almost NO resources, not enough trained people who can take care of the elderly population, we are, relying on the foreign hired helps…

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Filed under Awareness, Cost of Living, Expectations, Life, Observations, Old Age, Perspectives, Properties of Life, Trends

Can’t We Take Care of Our Own Aging Parents, Must We Hire Those from Abroad to Do it?

The “expert’s” opinion, from the Newspapers, translated…

Still recalled how the country started to allow foreign hired helpers to care for the families’ elderly, the Barthel Index score was set at 35, and, almost all who’d applied gets approved, but later on, it’d become, more complicated, there are those patients that I’d never even seen before, that came to me, asked for the forms for approval for hiring a foreign helper.

All of these wheelchair prone patients looked distant, with no light in their eyes, and were accompanied by a “family member”, and, with the stories on the news, I’d slowly come to understand, that those “family members” were actually from the companies that are hiring out the help, and those wheelchair prone “patients”, may have been trained, to act like they’re impaired.

When the Foreign Helpers Slowly Became the Primary Forces of Care

Once, I’d despised having to sign the papers that allowed for the families to hire a foreign helper, hated seeing how the game of trust is being played.  But, with the years of my practices, I’d started using a more positive and helpful attitude to assist the patients and their families, because this, is a method, to allow the elderly, to age as gracefully as they possibly can at home, although it may not be the most ideal, but, it’s the most workable way.

With the cases of scams from the applications for the foreign hired help increased, the doctors became more and more conservative in signing the documents, fearing that one day, they too, might get scammed by the middlemen, and may get sued in court.  What’s interesting was, that the government had loosened the requirements for hiring these foreign helpers, and, because the needs of the people increased, these foreign hired helpers became the primary force in taking care of the elderly people who’d lost their abilities.

Since when, those who’d accompanied the elderly on their strolls to the parks had become foreign hired help from all other nations, and the primary caretaker for the hospitalized elderly too, are mostly, foreigners.  I’d seen a ton of amazing foreign hired helpers, who took good care of the elderly, and, as they’d left the families to head back home, they’d feel sad too, and, the long-term care insurances also saw the foreign hired caretakers a important resource to caring for the families.

And, this sort of a trend, is not at all, surprising to me.

As the Number of Elderly Increases, the Japanese & the Korean Don’t Hire Foreign Helpers

But, in Japan, where there are MORE elderly in the population, they naturally didn’t have any foreign hired helpers, and, in Korea, which showed similar rate of the increase in the number of elderly, they too, didn’t have foreign hired helpers, and, in China, the one-child-policy clearly caused the need for family caretaking, they too, didn’t have the foreign hired helpers, so, what’s up with Taiwan then?

The statistical measures done by the Health & Sanitations Department in 2010 showed, that there are about 310,000 elderly who had lost their abilities to take care of themselves (including mildly to severely mental incapacitated), and, in 2010, the foreigners who were here, for that purpose had almost reached 200,000, subtracting the elderly who were placed in homes, and those who were mildly incapacitated, maybe, every single elderly who’d lost ability has a foreign hired help to care for them, no wonder recently, the primary countries from Southeast Asia started rethinking thinking their citizens abroad to work, and, the family members are deeply distressed during the wait, to have a foreign hired help to come to their families.

Roughly estimating, the 200,000 foreigners receives $20,000N.T. per month, and, it’s a $480,000,000N.T. industry, not to mention the 200,000 job opportunities.  Of course, if you considered how much it costs, to hire someone from locally, with the price of $60,000N.T., an ordinary family just couldn’t possibly afford that.

But, is the future of the aging population solely reliant on foreign hired helpers indefinitely?  Making the rules more lenient, it’d only showed how much we needed it.  So, how come in Japan and Korea, the government can not hire any foreigners to help out?  Because the foreigners who couldn’t communicate with the elderly couldn’t possibly KNOW what they’re needing, plus, the manpower for caring for the elderly can be achieved through the developments of local industries, and so, they’re finding caretakers internally.

For the Time Being, We Should Start Training People to Provide Care

I’d gone to visit a lot of care facilities in Japan, and visited some of the long-term care facilities in the local communities, I saw so many younger men and women who are smiling, helping the elderly get around, bathing them, took them shopping too, I saw the pride of the caretakers.  I also saw the comforts of the elderly persons being looked after.

Taiwan had taken a different approach, compared to Japan and Korea on caring for the disabled elderly, the primary source of caretaking of our elderly is from foreign regions, but, is this, the future, that we all want?

Take good care of your own countries, is the hot-blooded words from a long time ago.  In order to save our own nation, establishing the local caretaker forums is also very important, take care of your own aging elderly!

Yeah, uh, easy for YOU to say, D-O-C!!!  The younger generations all have to work, and, because how tight our money is currently, there’s NO way that ANY of us can QUIT our jobs, and look after our own demented, ailing, aging parents ourselves, after all, the kids ALL have their separate lives to live, don’t they?  And so, we’d grown to become, totally reliant, on these foreign helpers to care for our aging family members, and this, IS the trend here!


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Filed under Cost of Living, Legislature, Life, Old Age, Professional Opinions, Properties of Life, Soup of the Day, Trends

Accompanying One’s Own Elderly Parents IS Getting Ready for One’s Own Elderly Years

The views on life, translated…

Even though, nobody can predict what happens in the future, but, from my eighty-something mother-in-law, I’d heard, “I’d never imagined that this, is how my elderly years would be like”, it was an eyeopener all right, I’m very persuaded now.

Turns out, that all the elderly who came before us, when they were younger, they’d all had their imagined life of old age, all hoped, that by the time their lives are finished, they would have done everything that they’d wanted to, and lived a happy life already, gone to the places they wanted to travel to; to not have to live one’s life according to someone else’s wishes, to no longer worry about the odds and ends of one’s household, and even, leave their offspring’s lives alone.

And still, as we come to old age, what is it, that prevents all these dreams from coming true?  A huge factor is “health”.  Other than those who are found with serious illnesses, those who don’t have seirous conditions are slowly deteriorating, organically.

And so, for some, their elderly years became, blind, deaf, and unable-bodied, and they’d lost interests in everything they do.  And so, when their younger generations who are active, fulfilled, and energetic accompany them, just be good listeners, hear them rant; and you also needed to treat the elders as if they were your offspring, hug them often, hold their hands tightly, focus your eyes onto them, and just quietly, accompany by their sides, on the one hand, it can increase these elderly persons’ sense of belonging; secondly, it helps those who are accompanying them, to get to know how it feels, to be the elderly before one becomes elderly, and when one returns back to one’s own life, you can become more focused on your own health, and cherish the time you have right now.

Because one day, we ourselves, will be far from the glory days of our younger years, and everything will fade away, but, we will, get to savor these days of memories very much.

And so, by observing and helping your elderly parents age gracefully, you are, actually preparing yourselves for your own old age too, because by watching them, you can see what you like and what you don’t, and, hopefully, you can give yourselves enough reminders, so you’ll turn into someone you loved to be around, instead of someone whom everybody tries to run from when you’re old and elderly.

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Filed under Expectations, Life, Observations, Old Age, Parent-Child Interactions, Perspectives, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Values, Wake Up Calls

The Home Care Organization: the Way to Solve the Issues of the Aging Population is by Setting Up More Daycare Centers for the Elderly

The policies for elderly care, from the Front Page Sections, translated…

The government discussed to lower the qualifications of eighty-five and older elderly persons’ filing for foreign help, and some of the families of the elderly population are clapping their hands.  The International Labor Union in Taiwan called out, that the new law not only needed to consider the needs of the employers, but also, look out for the benefits of these foreign-for-hire individuals; the R.O.C. Family Care Foundation suggests, that setting up more daycare centers for the elderly population is the real method to deal with the matter.

Based off of statistics, there are over 540,000 foreign for-hire individuals in Taiwan, the highest in any time in history, and, there were over 215,000 individuals who worked at the bedside of elderly.  The labor groups worried, that becoming lenient toward these foreign hired individuals’ applications will compress the employment opportunity of those bedside assistants in Taiwan, along with lower their pay too.

And so, because the money that was supposed to be earned by the people of this nationality got spread to those who came over to help take care of our elderly population, someone cries, and now, the government is thinking about changing the law?  Are you FREAKING kidding me here, if you don’t want foreign people, taking a SHARE of this big piece of pie, then, why don’t YOU, with elderly who are incapable of taking care of themselves, shoulder the responsibilities of taking care of your own parents!

Ungrateful people is what this is all about, and yeah, so, what IF we’re currently paying for those foreigners to help us out?  Would you be willing, with your higher degrees and everything, become someone who wipes the ass of someone who isn’t capable of doing that her/himself?  If not, QUIT whining, and ZIP it already.

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Filed under Cost of Living, Issues of the Society, Observations, Old Age, Social Issues, Values

The Water Running Off of a Cliff

From the Steep Cliffs of Your Thighs that’s Winding, Water’s Running Downward

I Held on to the Bucket for You, Imagining

That the Thousand-Year-Old Snows Have a Couple of

Drops, Melting Down

Sitting Here,

Dry and Waiting in This Cave I Looked Upward

Your Thin Frame Became an Old Pine Tree

Even Though, the Buds are Faced to the Winds

But, They Will Never Sway Again

The Sands of Time Kept Falling Downward

I Still Carried the Bucket, Waiting

In the Dark of Night, drop…drop…drop…drop

It’d Waken Me Up from My Distant Dreams

And so, this, is what it’s like, taking care of an elderly person, the offspring/caretaker must stay by her/his side, like a mother, at the side of her child, and, because this elderly person can’t urinate, the offspring must wait patiently for the parent to do so, then, the offspring would feel more at ease, this, is a good example of “paying back the parent who raised you”, and, NOT all the offspring would be willing OR able to do this for one’s own parents too.

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Filed under Awareness, Downward Spiral, Family Matters, Life, Old Age, Parent-Child Interactions, Social Awareness, Social Issues, Translated Work, Trends

A Woman Who Was Once a “Somebody” in Business Now Works as a Caretaker for the Elderly

A HUGE track change for someone, isn’t it???  From the Newspapers, translated…

The once, well-to-do business woman, early retired, fifty year old woman, Wan-Jen Jiang, four years ago, felt that she had too much spare time on her hands, started working as a home visit caretaker for the elderly, assisting the elderly who lived alone with their daily living routines.  She’d used the descriptions of “penance at night, graciousness during the daytime” to describe her life as caretaker of the elderly, because in the past when she’d worked in business, she’d had to watch out for scams, she didn’t feel too settled, but now, after she’d interacted with elderly who lived alone, she’d come to understand many things, and it made her happier, compared to when she brought in the big bucks.

At age fifty-seven right now, in her earlier years, Jiang had worked with a friend, buying construction sites, bought houses with the money she’d earned, seven years ago, she thought that she was okay, having made enough money, she’d left the world of business, and, took up residence in the place in Wan-Li District she’d bought seventeen years ago, and lived on leisurely.

Jiang told, that even though, she didn’t have any physiological worries, but, having nothing to do all day long, she’d felt bad.  She started volunteering at temples and hospitals, and still couldn’t find her center, later, she’d heard that the Hong-Dao Foundation who looked after elderly who lived alone in the Jingshan District was in need of caretakers, that a LOT of the elderly who lived alone lacked the cares, and so, she’d decided to enter the field of work.

She said, as a caretaker, she needed to prepare the meals for the elderly, to help them do their shopping, to accompany them to the doctors’ visits, she worked like a housekeeper.  And because those who needed the care and concerns are from lower economic status, or those without enough social support network, she’d seen a TON of things while she was offering the services.

Jiang said, that when the elderly smiled, the satisfaction she felt from it, is incomparable with the money she’d earned from before, and now, even during her “off time”, she’d still go to the cases that she worked with, to pay a visit, like she was visiting her friends.

The social worker of Hong-Dao Foundation, Wu said, that the case workers get paid $160N.T. an hour for home visits, but, because of how specialized this work is, and the places the workers are needed are distant regions, it was hard, to find more case workers, that in the four years that Jiang was working with them, she’d carried with her, the attitude of passion, it was truly moving.

And so, here, we have someone who wanted to give back to the world, because she already has a LOT of things for herself, she’d earned a LOT of money, but, something WAS missing from her life, and so, she started giving back to the community, and found satisfaction in helping others out, and, that, is MORE satisfying than ALL the money she’d ever made, because she’s making a difference in someone’s life, bringing smiles to those elderly who lived alone.  So, you still can’t measure the values of things with money.

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Filed under Awareness, Changing Tracks, Connections, Expectations, Helping Behaviors, Kindness Shown, Lending a Helping Hand, Life, Observations, Occupational Outlook, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, Self-Images, Social Awareness, Stories of Hope, Story-Telling, Values

An Elderly Man Was Killed, After Swallowing His Medications for Ailments, Along with a Set of Keys

The RULE of watch your “kids” also applies to watch your elderly parents here, from the Front Page Sections, and, you NEED to be especially watchful toward those elderly with D-E-M-E-N-T-I-A, from the Front Page Sections, translated…

An elderly man, Jing, with diabetes AND dementia, when taking his medications, accidentally swallowed his keys too, at dinner time, he felt his throat hurt, the son mistook it for his father having a cold, took the father to the doctor, the clinic sent them to the Veteran’s Hospital in Taichung, after the X-rays, they’d discovered the keys inside his esophagus, but the elderly had become unconscious already, and the resuscitation didn’t do anything, to save his life.

“There had been so many days when my husband didn’t have the appetite, even the easy to swallow rice gruels too!”, Jing (80 years old), the elderly man’s wife told, that last Tuesday, when her husband took his meds at home, after some ten minutes, he started slurring his speech, she’d suspected that he’d swallowed some fish bones from dinner.

Jing’s wife said, after she’d given him a drink of water, he’d still claimed to be uncomfortable, she’d immediately told her son to drive the man to the farmer’s hospital that was a part of the farmer’s community; the doctors ordered a blood test, took X-rays of his abdomen, but because he had a low white blood cells count, they’d kept him overnight for observations, the very next morn, they’d transferred him to the Veteran’s Memorial Hospital in Taichung.

The elderly man’s son said, that back then, the doctor did NOT check his father’s throat, and after they’d put him through the X-ray, while scanning his whole body, the doctor was shocked to discover a set of keys, lodged inside the elderly’s airway; as they were doing further examinations, the man lost his consciousness, the hospital did a tracheotomy, the elderly still died.

Jing’s wife thought back, that there was a single key placed, next to the bag of medication, she couldn’t understood how her husband could’ve mistook it, no wonder she couldn’t find the keys to the door.

And so, that, just shows you, that you still need to keep those “dangerous” items (and keys had become ONE of them too!!!) OUT of the reach, of NOT only children, BUT the elderly too, especially for elderly people who could NO longer tell, because of dementia, or the deteriorations of the brain………


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Filed under Death by Dementia, Despair, News Stories, Old Age, Social Awareness, Social Issues

“Who Will Take Care of Me?”, the Alternative Version of the Little Red Hen

The Little Red Hen is NO “spring chicken” anymore, she finds herself now, approaching her elderly years, and, just as all older adults worry, she too, started worrying about what’ll become of her.
So, she called out to her children, who were still chickens when she taught them the values of hard work (in the previous tale???), and, she asked the first chicken, who’s now, the ROOSTER of a hen house a few miles down the road, this firstborn “son” of hers told her that he LOVED to take care of her, it’s just that he’s put in charge of waking up Farmer John Jr. (senior had already died???).

Then, she phoned her second chick (who’s NOW, a hen like she was), her “baby girl” told her, “Uh, mama, I’m NOT sure I can, I got a TON of chicks hatching every day, and I’m the BABYSITTER on this HUGE FIVE acre farm.

The Little Red Hen then called out to her other chickens too, but, she’d gotten the replies that her first two children had given her, with the variations on the reasons why she couldn’t stay with any of them.

In the end, the Little Red Hen who’d taken care of ALL her children had NOBODY to take care of her at old age, what can I say???  She was bred and raised in a Western farm, had it been an Eastern farm that she was born, bred and raised in, maybe, just maybe thing would’ve been different somehow.  She might NOT end up all alone, in ASSISTED CHICKEN LIVING, but then again…

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Filed under Miscelaneous