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Anger and frustration due to dementia

Richyboy

Registered User
Sep 4, 2015
5
Hi, I'm looking for ideas, suggestions or/and support. My mother has dementia (I don't know her actual diagnosis) and until July of this year, when my father died, he was her main carer. It is only actually now, when dad is gone, that I'm finding out how advanced mum's dementia actually is. Mum and dad were very active and sociable and dad used to cover very much for mum's limitations. Now with dad gone, mum is lost and exposed. She wants to drive her car, but can't, she wants to go on holiday with her friends, but they can't take responsibility for her.

She has started drinking too much, a bottle of wine every 2 days, she gets very angry, particularly as it gets late and she's had a drink. She lives in her own home with 24hr care, but the carer is unable to control her alcohol consumption.

Mum has always been very independent and hates having to rely on a carer. I think she feels embarrassed about having a carer.

Any suggestions? How do I convince mum that she mustn't drive, that she can't go on holiday?
 

curtainsgalore

Registered User
Nov 2, 2014
46
Has the DVLA been informed that your mother can't drive any more. We were in this situation and my Mums doctor said mum couldn't drive as her dementia got worse and he contacted DVLA. We then took Mum's car away from her drive as even without the keys she tried to break into it with a knife!
On holidays, is there any way you or a family member could take her away for a weekend and see how she does. Then you'll know that it's the time for holidays to stop. Some people on talking point have relatives that still go on long haul holidays with dementia as strange as that sounds.


Sent from my iPad using Talking Point
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
11,646
South coast
Hi Richyboy
You will probably never be able to convince her not to try and drive her car. If she cant drive its probably best to get rid of it - or at least hide it somewhere else so she cant see it.
Does she buy the drink herself? Could you have a word with the shop where she is buying it? If someone is buying it for her, could you have a word with them?
 

Witzend

Registered User
Aug 29, 2007
4,291
SW London
When my mother started hitting the sherry bottle hard, my brother began to water it down, though not by too much - maybe a quarter. However this was easy for him since she never went out and he did most of her shopping.
I don't know whether this would be feasible for you.
 

Richyboy

Registered User
Sep 4, 2015
5
Welcome to TP :)

Can I ask where she gets the alcohol from?
She buys it herself, when she goes shopping with the carer, now that she has finished off the wine my father had bought. He was a member of the wine society, so had bought various bottles over the years.
 

Richyboy

Registered User
Sep 4, 2015
5
Hi Richyboy
You will probably never be able to convince her not to try and drive her car. If she cant drive its probably best to get rid of it - or at least hide it somewhere else so she cant see it.
Does she buy the drink herself? Could you have a word with the shop where she is buying it? If someone is buying it for her, could you have a word with them?
Yes, I think you are right and usually I keep the car at my house, away from mum, but then of course she gets angry and tells me to bring it back. I don't know whether to tell her the truth, i.e. you are not allowed to drive, explain why, which I have tried but always get the same response. She tells me that "of course I can drive" and "I want to drive". Living in London I point out the fact there are lots of buses, she can call a cab etc, which she grumbles about.
Re the alcohol. she buys it herself, when shopping with the carer. The carer is not strong enough to stop her.
 

Cat27

Volunteer Moderator
Feb 27, 2015
10,943
Merseyside
Do you have power of attorney? If do could you limit her money to stop the amount of alcohol she buys?
 

Sue J

Registered User
Dec 9, 2009
8,035
Yes, I think you are right and usually I keep the car at my house, away from mum, but then of course she gets angry and tells me to bring it back. I don't know whether to tell her the truth, i.e. you are not allowed to drive, explain why, which I have tried but always get the same response. She tells me that "of course I can drive" and "I want to drive". Living in London I point out the fact there are lots of buses, she can call a cab etc, which she grumbles about.
Re the alcohol. she buys it herself, when shopping with the carer. The carer is not strong enough to stop her.
Hi Richyboy

Does the carer try to stop her though? She could say you have got a bottle at home and produce a watered down version maybe on return from shopping trip?
Just a suggestion

Best wishes
Sue:)

Just reread your post and July is not really that long since you have both been bereaved. Your Mum must be still adjusting to the loss of your father and perhaps still thinking he is here and drinking wine , something they enjoyed together is perhaps part of her grief process. With Christmas coming too it must be very hard for her and you.
 
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Emac

Registered User
Mar 2, 2013
186
Sounds like your Mum is a strong willed lady, a bit like mine! We had to trick her when it came to alcohol, first with watered down very weak measure and then with just running a finger of spirit round the top of the glass so she thought she had bacardi when it was really only coke. Over time the trickery got easier and now she doesn't drink at all or even ask for it. Strongly opposing just means a fight. Clever handling is the way forward. Perhaps you need a carer (who might be called a housekeeper or a companion if your Mum is embarrassed by the carer tag) with dementia experience who will be more adept at managing her? I liked the suggestion of telling her she had a bottle at home.
Re the driving I would absolutely involve the GP. Sometimes having an authority figure say she mustn't drive due to medical conditions is acceptable where the same message from her son will be ignored. If that fails could you say it's at the garage for repairs when she asks you to bring it back? Hope you have some success with the TP folk's suggestions.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
11,646
South coast
Yes, I think you are right and usually I keep the car at my house, away from mum, but then of course she gets angry and tells me to bring it back. I don't know whether to tell her the truth, i.e. you are not allowed to drive, explain why, which I have tried but always get the same response. She tells me that "of course I can drive" and "I want to drive". Living in London I point out the fact there are lots of buses, she can call a cab etc, which she grumbles about.
Re the alcohol. she buys it herself, when shopping with the carer. The carer is not strong enough to stop her.
Im assuming from this that she has been told that she is not allowed to drive (not just by you), but she is still driving. If this is so, then she wont have a valid driving license and also her car insurance wont be valid. It doesnt bear thinking about in London..... Especially if shes also drinking :eek:
Move the car and tell her its having its MOT ..... its failed its MOT .... its being repaired. Its no use trying to argue and/or reason with her - she will not understand and even if you get her to agree she wont remember.
Tough love maybe.
 

pippop1

Registered User
Apr 8, 2013
501
Grape juice, both white and red, are the same colours as wine and she may not notice if they are in wine bottles? Let her buy the odd bottle of wine with the carer and the carer can substitute the contents.