two residents kissing - page 2

i saw two residents, one who is very confused due to dementia and another resident who we can pretty much reason with kissing each other in the hallway. they are not married, but this poor lady... Read More

  1. by   systoly
    The original post does not state whether either of these residents has a living significant other, which would make a difference. Let's assume both are single or widowed. My next question would be, before the onset of dementia, did the confused resident have values and believes that would see kissing in public as appropriate or would it have violated her values. Surely we should recognize a person's need for love and affection, but we have to protect their dignity as well.
  2. by   achot chavi
    Quote from systoly
    The original post does not state whether either of these residents has a living significant other, which would make a difference.

    [FONT="Comic Sans MS"]Why would that make a difference? One resident was suffering from dementia and was unable to give consent- married, widowed or divorced!!! Once we had an end stage Alzheimers pt raped by his own (healthy) wife- she had needs he couldn't meet, so she forced him- he came back to the unit with bruises and all upset...we called the SW!!!

    Let's assume both are single or widowed. My next question would be, before the onset of dementia, did the confused resident have values and believes that would see kissing in public as appropriate or would it have violated her values. Surely we should recognize a person's need for love and affection, but we have to protect their dignity as well.
    [FONT="Comic Sans MS"]Need for love, affection and attention is real, but should not be met by another resident.... for that she has family and warm staff,
  3. by   systoly
    What a great response achot chavi, a different, but certainly valid perspective. That's exactly what I like about this forum - food for thought. The incident where the wife used force is very sad, sounds like the wife had deeper lying problems than unmet needs.
  4. by   HippyGreenPeaceChick
    By SW you mean the Social Worker.
  5. by   achot chavi
    Quote from HippyGreenPeaceChick
    By SW you mean the Social Worker.
    yep, who else
  6. by   johnst10
    Quote from CapeCodMermaid
    If one has dementia, she can't consent. I'd tell the families and report it to the DPH because many of the surveyors say it is a reportable. We had one patient give another patient...er..um....hmmmm how to be delicate....oral sex. We called both families and the woman's family (you better sit down for this) said "Oh, mom always loved to do that!" I about fell off my chair and all I could think was I hope MY kids would never say that about me.
    It's too bad we get so bent out of shape about residents showing affection for each other.
    I'm glad I was sitting down. I would NEVER know if my mom would "like to do that"
  7. by   debRN0417
    Quote from achot chavi
    [FONT="Comic Sans MS"]Need for love, affection and attention is real, but should not be met by another resident.... for that she has family and warm staff,
    Absolutely positively. It matters not- the fact is there has to be mutual consent, and for mutual consent both parties have to be competent. It is very sad. Many times residents think others are their spouse or other significant loved one who has passed, or may not have passed. Along with that, if they are both competent and consenting, then they probably would not be kissing in public anyway, as most older persons consider that inappropriate. They would ask for and receive privacy to be toghether and share intamacy, whatever that intamacy is to them. The families, doctor and social worker need to be involved. Also it could be something that needs to be reported to the state as well as adult protective services. The family could argue that he was assaulting her if she is demented...police could be involved....ugh....messy.....
  8. by   CapeCodMermaid
    Love and affection are not exactly the same as sex. Just because someone is old doesn't mean they don't still have sexual needs which may not be fulfilled by a warm smile or a hug.
  9. by   achot chavi
    Quote from CapeCodMermaid
    Love and affection are not exactly the same as sex. Just because someone is old doesn't mean they don't still have sexual needs which may not be fulfilled by a warm smile or a hug.
    In theory I agree, I will have to wait a few decades to be able to tell you for certain!!!
    In any event the OP was referring to a kiss btwn 2 pts, not a romp in the bedroom!!
  10. by   LilPeonNo1
    This is a double-edged sword! I have worked in some facilities that frown on relationships between residents, and others that tell the staff, it is none of their business and to stay out of it. And others still will say it is a privacy issue and by law you can not intervene.

    I too, took care of an woman Alzheimer's pt at one time, and a new male resident was admitted who looked uncanningly like her deceased husband. It was very strange! She thought this man was her husband and became very possessive of him. Sitting with him and following him around the facility. She even called him by her dead husband's name. The higher-ups discussed the issue w/ both families and they all felt it was a harmless situation. They let it continue. Then one day the woman freaked out because the man was talking to another female resident and she beat her up. The male resident started taking on the same behavior with other men in the facility. Threatening to beat them up and on a couple of occassions did just that. His behavior became so out of control he had to moved to another facility. The woman became despondant, not eating or drinking. She wandered around every day lookig for him, calling out her dead husband's name (thinking it was him). It was awful! And, it was heart-wrenching to watch. I don't believe she ever got over it before she died.

    I don't think its a good idea to allow these relationships to form because of just this situation, but its not up to me. Each facility has its own policy and we all have to abide by it.
  11. by   psalm
    If something "goes wrong" how will it be remedied in court? Will a family member claim "grandma" wasn't protected in the nursing home?

    If the competent resident continued to have sexual overtones towards a dementia resident, it would be considered something similar to "statuatory rape" in the real world...not sure if there is a parallel term, but you get the idea.

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