“For us, homeshare all happened so organically, it was smooth and extremely simple. Dad has really turned a corner.”
Dominic’s Father, Julian, lives in Dorset and has been homesharing for the past 12 months. In a fascinating twist of fate, Julian and his sharer were reconnected having previously spent several years working together!
When Julian began to experience memory loss and was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, his living situation at the time came under question, and the need for some extra support became apparent. Today Julian maintains a very independent life and has a busy social calendar, yet having another person in the home to help with practical activities such as locating items and taking medication when needed, has been instrumental in ensuring Julian continues to thrive independently.
“We already knew about homeshare and had previously talked about it. My Father lives in a big flat and he doesn’t need that much space to himself. At one point in time, he began to frequently need remote help for issues he was experiencing and this fast-tracked us into the possibilities of homeshare. My sister and I do not live locally to my Dad, we are some distance away and providing support at the end of a phone was not ideal. We knew that a better solution was needed.
Shortly after this, my Father was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and it was a very scary time. I stayed with him for a while, but this arrangement was unfeasible in the long-term. It wasn’t possible for me to live with my Father indefinitely.
Initially, he was resistant to the idea of sharing his home with someone else, and understandably so. He has lived much of his life on his own and was unsure about a different way of living. We did however explain to Dad that it could be tricky if he hurt himself and is alone in the home. Sensing his apprehension, we did say that if he really didn’t want to homeshare, we wouldn’t force the idea, but he did understand the merits.
Reconnecting with homeshare
Today through Share and Care Homeshare, my Father is homesharing with someone who he used to work with! Richard is in his 50s and used to manage a brewery that my Father owned. They knew each other from years ago and there was already an established connection, it wasn’t a case of getting to know each other from scratch, which made the process fairly straightforward.
Dad has a strong network of friends and so for him, the practical support side of homesharing is more valuable than the companionship element. Dad has no hard requirements, he is very able, but it’s the little things that are making a big difference.
Turning a corner
The helpful bit for us is that there is always someone there. Dad is often putting things down and he’s always losing things, so it’s very useful having a sharer in the home to locate those items easily.
They also cook for each other and share meals together, although the sharer probably cooks a little more than my Father!
Without having a sharer, we would have had to get nurses in and have proper assisted living. It would have been desperately sad as Dad is so capable of everything, but he was forgetting his pills and on occasions taking a fall too. For the first six months, when my Father was going through a difficult time, the situation could have been very different without the sharer there. Without Richard, there could have been a risk of a serious incident.
Dad has really turned a corner and has got much better.
A smooth & simple process
My Father speaks highly of Richard and he fully appreciates everything that he does. He says that we’ll never get someone like Richard again!
My one tip is to make sure that your loved ones fully understand what’s involved with homeshare and the changes that they should expect in their day-to-day lives. For us, homeshare all happened so organically. It was smooth and extremely simple.”