Help w/ Villa shower (not ECV/wheelchair issue)

Discussion in 'disABILITIES!' started by GuardMusic, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. GuardMusic

    GuardMusic Castaway Club Platinum

    Jul 18, 2005
    Looking for advice & recommendations.

    Through a friend we have a DVC reservation at our usual resort of Boardwalk Villas Dec. 4-8, 2018. Here's the situation.

    My mother has had a walk-in shower for 20+ years. Last summer I had to move her to assisted living where she still has a walk-in shower, now with shower chair. She has virtually no strength in her legs, so standing in the shower is dangerous for her.

    We went to BWV in May 2018 and upon getting into the Studio realized the bathroom wouldn't work. It had a tub. We called and they brought us a shower chair, but it didn't sit flat in the shower, she'd still have to step over, there were no grab bars, and it had a stationary shower head. I called down in a panic, as we'd never had to deal with this and I didn't know how to solve the problem.

    They were able to move us to a handicap accessible (walk-in shower) room. (I still felt bad for taking the room from someone who might have needed it due to a wheelchair.) It worked out great and my mom still raves about it.

    Before this May 2018 trip we made this Dec. 2018 reservation in January 2018 - before I realized what her needs were (in May). When we got back I made our friend aware of the situation so she could update our Dec. reservation. I didn't realize we were just on a "special needs waiting list"!

    Today I get an email from friend saying she's been checking the wait list, but no special needs have been confirmed! So now I don't know what to do.

    I know some tubs have extra space to sit in the back, but BWV don't appear to have that. I'm fearful a transfer bench won't sit level in the tub (like the chair issue we encountered last time.) A stationary showerhead isn't something she'd be able to reach to adjust to not spray directly on her (and not get her hair wet all the time; I guess I could ask for a shower cap in that situation?)

    I don't want this to be an ongoing problem/fight for my mom that would tarnish the trip. I also don't want to come off as being a pain with the DVC/BWV Cast Members. So please send advice, recommendations, past experiences, suggestions, etc. ASAP!

    Thanks in advance!
  2. lanejudy

    lanejudy Moderator Moderator

    Oct 27, 2011
    I don't have experience with those specific rooms, but you can rent a bath chair/transfer bench to get the specific type that would be most useful for your mom's needs. The ones available from WDW resorts, if one is available, are not always the best option. Check out Orlando Medical Rentals which has different models; look for a wider one called a transfer tub bench. I'd also buy some cheap shower caps at the dollar store to bring.

    Enjoy your vacation!
    Hopefully and serenitynow like this.
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  4. serenitynow

    serenitynow DIS Veteran

    Mar 10, 2005
    I agree with lanejudy, a transfer tub bench is the way to go. Typically two legs and part of the bench are outside of the tub/shower, allowing the bather to slide over into the shower spray. The bench also feels more sturdy and steady.
  5. DisneyOma

    DisneyOma DIS Veteran

    Jul 27, 2015
    Is there a reason why you wouldn't bring a shower cap from home? I'm not sure they even have them at the resorts!
    Hopefully likes this.
  6. Starwind

    Starwind DIS Veteran

    May 7, 2014
    Is changing the reservation to a different resort an option ?

    For example, Copper Creek Villas (at Wilderness Lodge) has studios with walk-in showers and studios with bathtubs. Both have handheld showerheads as standard.

    serenitynow likes this.
  7. mamabunny

    mamabunny DIS Veteran

    Oct 11, 2012
    Your Mom *needs* a roll-in shower - she just doesn't need to "roll in".

    I have to use a roll-in shower wherever I am; at home or when I travel. If I can't get a roll-in shower room, I can't go. It's that simple.

    If your Mom needs that accommodation, then that's what you need to ask for. Don't feel bad - it's not like you are using that room on a lark.

    Use whatever tools you need to keep your Mom safe, and have the best possible trip to WDW! :)
  8. GuardMusic

    GuardMusic Castaway Club Platinum

    Jul 18, 2005
    UPDATE: It looks like at this point (5 weeks out), we are at the mercy of Disney. They told our DVC friend all the accessible rooms are booked. I talked to my mom about this and she said, "We'll make it work." So if we end up with a standard room, I'll still inquire about an accessible room, but also know we might just have to try to deal with a transfer bench.

    I didn't bother looking into changing resorts. With beginning stages of dementia I felt it was equally important for her to be familiar with her surroundings. (FYI, the public site shows no accessible rooms available across the entire property during our dates.)

    Lesson learned, know that we know what she needs, I'll definitely have it put on the reservation at the time of booking.

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