Dear Abby, “My mother lives in an assisted living community…

in the memory care unit.  During a recent visit, I became upset because the care staff addressed my mom as “Granny,” “Grandma,” “Mamma,” etc.  Mother struggles with the time of day, the day of the week and sometimes forgets who we are – so I don’t see the benefit of using names other than her own.  I think it is disrespectful, unacceptable and unprofessional.  When I asked the attendant to please address Mom as “Mrs. Smith” or “Ms. Ann,” she laughed and said, “Granny wouldn’t know who I was talking to if I called her by those names.”  My siblings and I took this issue to the director, who told us we shouldn’t be hurt and that the staff was showing our mom she is loved.  I am interested in knowing your opinion on this matter.” from She Has a Name in Georgia

Response:   “Dear She Has a Name in Georgia.  Not knowing the national origin of the attendants in your mother’s care unit I can’t be certain, but what you encountered may be a cultural difference.  In other cultures, calling someone “Mama,” “Auntie” or “Grandma” is considered respectful.  While it made you uncomfortable, if it didn’t have that effect on your mother, you should take your cue from the director of the facility.  However, because you have formally requested that your mother be addressed by name, then that is what should be done in the future.”

from the Brattleboro Daily Reformer, December 2, 2011

“you should take your cue from the director of the facility” WRONG

 “you have formally requested… that is what should be done…”  RIGHT!

 This is where Custom Care Trust comes in!  A CustomElderCare® Workbook prevents precisely this kind of misunderstanding!  Give the gift of familiarity, comfort, and dignity to a loved one!


Speak Your Mind


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