I have now left professional staff in no doubt about the outcome I’m looking for at Friday’s Best Interest Meeting. Maureen and I want to stay together and I will play no further part in any plans to put her into permanent care. However, I would want the meeting to come up with a safe solution for Respite Care.
There has never been a satisfactory outcome when Maureen has gone into Respite Care. On her birthday I found her bruised and battered in a place that a Specialist Doctor said was likely to lead to a further deterioration of her condition. Then she escaped from another Residential Home and refused to move from the Centre of Cleethorpes until I came to pick her up. A later attempt resulted in a phone call to inform me the police had found her when the Care Home were not aware that she was missing. Finally, I visited her at the aforementioned Home in the latest attempt at Respite and the staff were unclear of her whereabouts. Eventually, I found her in what is called the ‘new build’; a suite of rooms yet to be brought into commission. She was shut in an unlit room in an unsupervised part of the building. Following this incident, this area has eventually been made inaccessible.
I think there are serious questions to be asked about the monitoring of Homes where we have sought Respite with the support of the Local Authority. Maureen has been at risk on four occasions and there are issues about the reaction from a number of quarters. Consequently, I’m in the process of seeking legal advice on how my wife is being put at risk when we are paying the going rate and anticipate a duty of care.
It has taken a while for me to comprehend why Maureen keeps saying that ‘I ‘ve tricked her or I’m attempting to trick her’. I think it is her way of saying that I have sold her a pup – saying: ‘Respite will be good for her when it has clearly not’. I have given her my word there will be ‘no more trickery from me’ and that from now on we’ll stay safe together!