Sisters feel like they ‘lost mum’ after 8 months without visits

A devastated family feels like they have ‘lost their mum’ after not being able to see her properly for more than eight months.

Angela Thomas and Kath Oldfield are calling for the Government to rethink their care home strategies as their mum’s dementia is "getting worse" without proper family interaction.

The family, from Litherland, claim the Government has "forgotten" about their mum Ann and the rest of the older generation.

Kath, 58, told the ECHO : “The government has a lot to deal with but they have forgotten about our older generation.

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“It is as if it’s a foregone conclusion, they are just gonna catch coronavirus or die.

“They don’t care enough, that's how it feels. But it’s not just caring for them, it's for us too we’ve got a void in our life.

Ann Crierie and her daughter-in-law Christina in 2017 at Ann's Grandsons wedding

“They are fading away and we need to speak up for them.”

Kath and her siblings have only been able to see their mum Ann Crierie, 79, through a window during the coronavirus pandemic.

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Ann’s family were unable to spend last Christmas with her because there was an outbreak of a stomach bug on her hospital ward and now they fear they won’t be able to spend a second Christmas with her.

Kath said: “It's just been an emotional roller coaster, we feel like we're on borrowed time.

“Our memories are going to be from well over 12 months ago with her now.”

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Due to Ann’s condition, it has been almost a year without proper interaction with her children.

Kath added: “Before she was put into the care home she was in hospital with her dementia and because she had a fall.

“So we haven’t seen mum in over a year properly, we haven’t hugged her, you're not allowed to touch, it is hard.

“It’s hard for us all and our brother Don too and his wife, they are a big part of my mum's care. It’s just been horrendous.

“We are touching hands through the window and she is kissing the window, she gets so upset.”

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Ann Crierie kissing the window of the nursing home on one of her daughters recent visits during the coronavirus pandemic

Angela, 51, said she feels guilt, even though it is out of their hands.

She told the ECHO: “We feel like we’re letting her down. We say ‘mum when you get better we’ll take you out’ but she will go ‘why can’t I come with you?’

“Because of the stage of dementia she has she is not able to accept the explanation.

“It feels like we’ve abandoned her, especially because she is very childlike now.

Ann Crierie on her wedding day

“It’s like we’ve lost our mum, she feels like someone we grieve now and the reality kicks in and you know she's safe with lovely people taking care of her but we feel like it should be us, we feel guilty.”

Ann has nine grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren, however she is yet to meet three of her newest born great grandchildren because of the pandemic.

When Ann turns 80, on December 13, the family hope changes will have been made so they can make her birthday special.

Angela says the Government needs to do more about the care home situation.

Ann Crierie pictured in hospital in December 2019

She said: “The government should do something about it. They need to really look at this and try and make a change because we don’t want this to be our last memories behind a glass window.

“It’s her 80th soon but they have no means for us to go inside, so we’re going to have to go to the window and try and make it special for her and for us but we’re not going to be able to get our hug.”

She added: “We are just one family out of thousands in the same boat a change needs to happen.

“Hopefully if they could test us so we are clear, then we can go into her room or wear PPE like the nurse and the bank staff do.”

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