Registered User
Sep 10, 2005
Felt I had to share this! Last night I took a phone call from my brother. His first words were: "she's got right on my nerves today." The "she" in question was our mum. He then regaled me with news of their shopping trip.

I must admit to having a wry smile on my face as I sipped my wine from the comfort of my sofa. A sofa I don't often sit on at weekends, because I'm often with mum. I tried to explain to bro (a man who has, only in the last few months, taken an 'interest' because of my constant prodding), that he needs to adapt to mum's ways. That becoming impatient with her (especially whilst shopping) is counterproductive. I had explained before their trip the tactics I used to keep my own blood pressure down. He took no notice. He said she was obstinate, 'all over the place' and shouting. Of course, he didn't check what she needed, he didn't write a list to which he could point her to. When she told him she thought she'd forgotten her glasses, he said "you don't need them, I can see for you." (How awful, for her).

After I'd welcomed him to the revolution (sorry if this sounds gloating, but as I said to him on the phone I've had to deal with this for over 12 months now), I rang mum. And what an enlightening phone call it was.

She told me that yes, they'd been shopping. That she felt rushed (not like she does when I'm with her ... tactics, you see). She became flustered and unable to cope with what she needed to do ... probably explains why she bought 100 ciggies! That going shopping with him left her feeling unsure.

On occasion, mum does have an amazing insight into her illness - this was one of them. She managed to recount some of the things she'd bought. I bade her a good evening and finished my wine!

What the conversations proved to me last night is that in the early stages of this disease, we as carers need to adapt our behaviour (as difficult as that is) to the needs of the sufferer. It's taken me a long time and I'm not there yet, but I have a grasp of the basics. Perhaps my sibling, who has had little involvement with mum, went to bed last night with a different perspective ... or maybe not.

Whatever, I felt proud of my mum. I think on this occasion, it was definitely six of one and half a dozen of the other! :)


Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
I 2nd that Grannie .

Just like to add

we as carers need to adapt our behaviour (as difficult as that is) to the needs of the sufferer. It's taken me a long time and QUOTE] I'm not there yet[/ Nor am I and its 4 years on :eek: :)


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Well done, Lucille.

I just hope you manage to 'educate' your brother in the techniques of of handling a dementia patient. Otherwise, he might just decide that as you do it so well, he'll leave it all to you!

It's worth putting some effort into educating him now, because it can only get harder. Grab any help you can get!

Good luck,

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
NW England
Oh Lucille, thank you for sharing that! Just so much raised a smile.... just got back from my own mum's with my own head 'all over the place' ... (hence come for a TP fix when there's a million other things I should be doing).....

Had gone this morning to finish her Christmas prep and was quite cheerful that Christmas plans seem to be falling into place..... well, I had Plan A and Plan B up my sleeve .... but how she was today made me think better start working through to Plan Z.... silly me, huh? You'd have thought by now I should have got the hang of expecting the unexpected from mum..... today (so far) hasn't been a good one for me .... but then you've just reminded me there will another time (tonight, tomorrow, next week?) when she will say or do something that amazes me and makes me :)

And whilst I don't want to throw in a 'downer' I have to confess what has concerned me today about myself is having to admit to a sense of 'relief' that mum is still at the stage I was able to come away and deal with my own needs...... better disappear and do something constructive before this turns into a full confessional......:eek:

Much love, Karen, x


Registered User
Mar 24, 2006
Co Durham
Hi Lucille,
My heart goes out to all you carers , I really don't understand how you can put up with so much and yet turn the other way.
You all have so much patients with the job you are doing.
As a person with the early signs of the disease, I often wonder how carers manage, when I see how some people behave. We all have different signs and react in different ways, and yet it is the carer who at the end of the day has to pick the pieces up and start all over again. You all deserve a medal and yet like me you would never want to go through this with anyone else.
I often think back to when we got married and took the vows, in sickness and in health, but I didn't think anyone thought of this coming along.
When I see all those gongs being given out, I never see anyone who has done a job like you.

God bless you all, you're doing a wonderful if thankless and unpaid job.

Its too much really to ask, but I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and a very Happy New Year.



Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Dear Kenc

Thank you so much for your good wishes.

We're not all saints (I'm certainly not), and we're not always as patient as we should be, but we do our best, and we do love you all.

In my case, as with so many, it's too late to hope for a word of appreciation from our loved ones, so your message is very precious.

So thank you again, and a happy Christmas to you and your family.


Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
Dear Ken, Thank you for those kind words.

We manage because we must.

I manage because I need to give the care I would want offered to me, if I were in the same boat.

Your wife has a gem in you. Sylvia x


Registered User
Sep 10, 2005
Tender Face said:
I have to confess what has concerned me today about myself is having to admit to a sense of 'relief' that mum is still at the stage I was able to come away and deal with my own needs

Much love, Karen, x
Hi Karen

Thank you for the above quote. I know exactly what you mean. I have today been able to do the normal, mundane things that we all take for granted and (which I usually moan about!) But the thought did go through my head today that mum is worse this Christmas than last and next year who knows. So the 'stage' she's at is important (for her as well as me!).

Ken: Thank you for your kind words! I help my mum, because she's my mum and I love her. For all the things she's done for me and all the times she's been there. How could I not? We will have a great Christmas with mum and cherish it. Besides, whilst she's up for it, she can help in the kitchen :D :D taming the turkey!

Skye: Yes, I will try and get my brother to help more. As I mentioned he's been slightly more involved since September, but it's been a hard slog trying to cajole him. I did reach a stage where I thought why should I keep asking him? As my mother's son, shouldn't he be there for her? In the end I found it too wearing; trying to deal with mum and him. But, as I've said he is 'coming round' a bit and he did ask what the consultant said so I guess that's a step in the right direction ...

Thanks all for your kind words; it's nice to just be able to express a thought or two and know that others are/have been in the same boat.

Best wishes.