This study represents the experiences of informal carers of people with dementia concerning periods of transition into formal care. Retrospective interviews with 18 carers identified the key narratives: ‘This is why I had to’, ‘They said I need to’ and ‘It was a last resort’. These indicate a sense of carers’ responsibility in decision making and the undesirable assumptions around the move. However, the narrative of ‘I made the right decision’ was common after transition. Findings represent the nuanced carer experience around transitions, providing insight into the experiences of families living with dementia and informing future care planning.