1. purchase

    purchase Registered User

    Aug 31, 2005
    50
    England
    Hello everyone

    Went to visit mom yesterday. I was very tired because I went straight from work and mom was in a partucularly tearful mood and I felt so very angry, with her, with the situation, with my family for not supporting me and my sister and for not visiting mom and with just about everything. No matter how hard I tried I could not shake mom out of her mood. She wanted to come home because she felt that if she stayed there she would go mad. She complained about other residents and even threatened to kill one of them.

    My sense of humour left me completely. Then I came home and my husband, bless him, said Don't visit her. It worries him that I am so stressed at the moment. Needless to say that after a sleeples night I now feel very guilty at being cross with her.


    Sorry to be so down but thanks for reading this.

    Jacky
     
  2. Rosalind

    Rosalind Registered User

    Jul 2, 2005
    203
    Wiltshire
    When you were adolescent, can you honestly say you were never thoroughly horrible to your mum, and quite possibly there were moments when she thought you were an ungrateful monster and was extremely angry with you? I certainly was, and it would be a rare, no unnatural, daughter who wasn't.

    Sadly, your roles have reversed, but you should not beat yourself up because you reacted to her behaviour, even though she can't help it. Don't suppose adolescents with raging hormones can either (distant sounds of slamming door, accompanied by wails of 'we didn't ask to be born')

    You are human. Your situation is not easy. And you were tired.

    You will go on visiting your mum, and being p---ed off with your sister, because you are who you are. But maybe you should not go when you are feeling exhausted?

    Good luck
     
  3. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    2,259
    West Sussex
    Dear Jacky, your feelings are very human and normal in the circumstances. Your tired, frustrated and upset at not being able to wave a magic wand and sort it all out to how it used to be, at least thats how I used to get. You feel as if everything is one big nightmare that you can't wake up from. But Jacky, you are doing the best you can in a situation that just ain't easy my love. Your Mum had probably forgotton most of her conversation with you before you had even reached home, where as you, it ground into your heart and cut like a knife didn't it? They don't mean half the things they come out with and they certainly wouldn't really want to hurt you. It's the illness doing the talking, so don't let it get to you. I know thats easier said than done, but you have to tell yourself that your Mum loves you and it is not her fault the illness makes things like this happen. Don't let that guilt monster in, and stop beating yourself with a big stick! If your Mum only could, she would tell you how wonderful a daughter she has. Visit if you can and want to, but if it really upsets you, go less often. You could send little notes or gifts in between to cheer her day if you wanted. We can't change the way this illness steals our loved ones away but we can fight it by refusing to let it make us feel we are at fault for its presence because we most definately did not invite it into our love ones lives. Love and hugs, She. XX
     
  4. Sandy

    Sandy Registered User

    Mar 23, 2005
    6,847
    Hi Jacky,

    No matter how hard I tried I could not shake mom out of her mood.

    No matter how much we love someone, with dementia or without, at times we just have to accept that their moods, thoughts and feelings are their own.

    We can try to make things better, in both practical and emotional ways, but ultimately we can't be responsible for their reactions.

    I think that most of us realise this when dealing with other adults in "normal" situations. But when we see somone we love in such distress, we tend to want to carry the burden for them and releive them of that pain.

    As dementia progresses, some of the old strategies for helping start losing their effectiveness. Also, sometimes the pain is too strong to be "shaken off" - it can only be shared.

    Some things are "fixable" and some are just "endurable" and some may even seem "unendurable". Do what you can and give what you can - sustainably - and try to let go of what is beyond your control.

    Take care,

    Sandy
     
  5. purchase

    purchase Registered User

    Aug 31, 2005
    50
    England
    Dear Sheila and Sandy

    Have just read your posts and they have helped a lot. I certainly do want the past back. At the moment all I think of is that over the past twelve months mom has lost her husband, been in a psychiatric hospital twice, the 2nd time being just awful and is now in a care home. Because of the way she is we can't take any personal things in to the care hom and to me and my sister it seems as if she is homeless.

    Anyway that's how I feel at present. But today I am going to see my BEAUTIFUL TWIN GRANDAUGHTERS one of who has chicken pox so I'm babysitting.

    Your thoughts about sending in little notes and gifts is a wonderful one Sheila. Thanks for that.

    Love Jacky
     
  6. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    2,259
    West Sussex
    Dear Jacky, hope you had a lovely day with your grandchildren, you deserve it, love She. XX
     
  7. purchase

    purchase Registered User

    Aug 31, 2005
    50
    England
    My day with my grandaughters was LOVELY.

    Something that has come up over the past couple of days. is that I have spoken to my daughter in law and my yourger son both of whom I love dearly. They can be relied on to give good honest advice. I told them about how bad the last visit was and they both said WHY DID YOU STAY SO LONG. I don't have an answer for this. I tend to stay for about an hour because this seems the right time but do you think that if mom is really tearfu then I shoud cut the visists short. This seems very cruel to me but it may be the answer for why stay if I am upsetting mom by being there.

    Also I think that because mom has AD then some people are not so sympathetic because it is not an illness like cancer for example. Last year when dad was terminally ill with cancer everyone rallied round with visits etc. I am a little hurt to say the least that they aren't doing this for mom. We don't have a large family but apart from a few visits from other family members it falls on my sister and myself to go. My brother never visits even though he is only a few minutes away. he never rings us to support us. WHY.

    One day I hope to post a really cheeful message on TP

    Jacky
     
  8. Kathleen

    Kathleen Registered User

    Mar 12, 2005
    639
    West Sussex
    Jacky

    When I visit Mum I see what mood she is in and if she is tired or distant I only stay a short time, on the days she is more chatty, sadly less and less now they have taken her off the galantamine, I will stay longer.

    I so agree with you on the nature of the AD meaning very few people visit compared to visiting others with physical illnesses. My Dad died last year following a massive stroke and his hospital room saw constant visitors! Including immediate family members who don't go near Mum at all.

    I hear the excuse "she won't remember me" too often. Mum doesn't remember me, but I still go to see her because I love her.

    The way I cope is to live and let live, as Mum and Dad always taught us, we are all different and cope in different ways, none of which is "wrong."

    For your own sake you should only go to visit if you are as relaxed and calm as possible, that way you won't blame yourself so much for your Mum's tears.

    kathleen
    xx
     
  9. blue sea

    blue sea Registered User

    Aug 24, 2005
    270
    England
    Jacky

    I agree with Kathleen. I adjust my visits according to how well dad can cope . If he is very agitated and just wants to move from one place to another and is very irritable, I keep my visit short and cheery in tone, saying I've just popped in for a few minutes on my way home from work. If he's in a more contented mood I stay longer, look at photos with him and 'chat'. On the whole as the illness has progressed I have found it better to visit more frequenlty but for shorter times. I used to always stay an hour, now it's usually half an hour, though I might just stay 10 minutes if he is really disturbed. You just have to do what seems best on the day. I too feel hurt that dad's friends / relatives have little contact. They don't live near but most don't even phone or write to ask after him. However I really appreciate the fewwho do keep in touch. It's easy to be bitter . I try not to be because I know they are elderly and that they perhaps have a greater fear of mental illness than our generation. It's tempting for all of us to avoid associations with death and illness and the longer the gap the harder it is to renew contact.

    Don't feel guilty for all the negative emotions you have. Keep remembering that you're doing a brilliant job in suppprting your mum. This illness is as hard at times on the relative as the sufferer.

    Blue sea
     
  10. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    2,259
    West Sussex
    Dear Jacky, I agree too, adjust your visits to the occasion. I found that my Mum could get "over stimulated" you know, like a baby or small child, so I used to try to keep things on a steady level. If it all looked as if she was getting a bit agitated in any way, then I would try to leave her quietly to herself and hope she calmed down again. Often, again like a small child, she would fiddle for a bit, then settle down, have a little doze and awake in a much better frame of mind.
    With regard to the difference in visiting when someone has dementia, I think many folk are a bit afraid of it, they don't know what to say, they feel inadequate, unable to relate to the person as the one they knew so well now that dementia has taken their personality away. This is sad I know, but some of us can visit, some can't, it doesn't neccessarily mean that the love and concern is not there though. Perhaps you could ask your brother to "help" in other ways, a card, a bunch of flowers through interflora, the odd phone call. Any of these would be nice for your Mum and may also gradually draw him in to visiting proper if you know what I mean. As for others who visited your Dad, we had similar with Mum. I came to the conclusion that for a lot of them, as they were the same age, seeing Mum like that really was so upsetting as they remembered her as a vibrant, happy, do anything for anyone person. It made them feel vulnerable too. They just couldn't handle it and, as they didn't feel they had to, they preferred to remember the old Lily and blotted out the new so to speak. Didn't help me, but it was their coping strategy. We all have to deal with it the best we can I suppose. Thinking of you, love and hugs, She. XX
     
  11. clare

    clare Registered User

    Oct 7, 2005
    31
    DEAR JACKY

    Thanks for this posting. I find visits really hard to handle. My instinct tells me that im going to visit my mum who will be so pleased to see me, but the reality is very different. Sometimes i only manage to stay for a few minutes if she is very aggitated or hostile, there are only so many insults i can take before they go through my tough armour, that we all need in this situation. I always feel quilty that I should stay longer and look on others having a good visit, but when the time is not improving the quality of life for anyone sometimes its best just to leave until another day.

    Its so good to hear that other peolpe experience these problems

    Clare
     
  12. connie

    connie Registered User

    Mar 7, 2004
    9,519
    Frinton-on-Sea
    Hi, it is not only in hospital or homes that this is a problem.
    Yesterday Lionel was agreeable, happy and we were able to go out in the evening.
    Today, I am the villian of the peace, "expecting him to go in the garden when it is freezing", putting the radio on when he wanted the television, except that he doesn't even know what is on.
    Can't do right for wrong. Hope tomorrow is better for all of us, Connie
     

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