I had a meltdown this morning and it was a doozy.
I am the primary caregiver for my mom with the help of a local agency that provides 7.5 hours of personal care support a week split over 4 days. That is their mandate and it is paid for through our health care taxes. My mom and dad worked all their lives in this country and are deserving of these services. It is because of these services that we live in Canada and why our Ontario Premier added a special health care tax 4 years ago.
When my mom was still living alone and more mobile she was receiving 10 hours weekly which was reduced when she moved in with us. The theory being of course that I would do the heavy lifting, so to speak. The various social workers and managerial staff who make occasional home visits to us are always trying to cut us back the hours. I had a huge issue with the agency in the fall after my mom came home from hospital and I needed some physio for her. One nasty woman, who wouldn't give me her name, had the temerity to yell at me for having the nerve to "demand more" as she put it. My relationship with the agency has deteriorated badly.
Today they sent a lovely lady who used to be my moms case worker to visit. After the usual casual bullshit she insisted she had to cut 1.5 hours. That's when I lost it and I almost turfed her out. At issue is showers, if you can believe it, she felt 4 showers a week was too much and could easily be reduced.
Pardon me, said I..."how many showers a week do you take?" She was flustered of course and I proceeded to explain that "you my dear lady, will be there soon too where you will need help, are two showers a week enough for you". I had to leave the room, I was so angry. When I came back I told her that I object, will advocate strongly on my mother's behalf and suggested that maybe if they got rid of some of the managers they would have more money to pay support staff. I threatened to put mom in a home (which was a bluff) at a greater expense to the government if she cut the hours.
Here in Ontario they are closing institutions for developmentally challenged persons and putting them into the communities against the wishes of the families. In some instances they are moving people who have lived in the same place for 20 plus years into unknown places and these people need huge personal support. That's why they are cutting support for seniors, robbing Peter to pay Paul so to speak.
The worst part of my meltdown? It really upset my mom, I could see the confusion on her face when I threatened to put her in a home. I spent the better part of today reassuring her that it was a bluff and it wouldn't happen. I think I finally convinced her and the end result. For the next six months were good, the hours stay.