1. LindaD

    LindaD Registered User

    Nov 17, 2004
    I have not posted here since the middle of 2005. Thank you to everyone who spoke to me then, I notice that some of you are still present on this site.

    Since then my Mum's dementia has got worse and we have recently moved her and my stepfather to a different care home nearer to me with a specialist dementia unit.

    He had a stroke some years ago and is in a wheelchair, incontinent and needs continual care, she is the one with dementia and they have been given a double room with its own little lounge so that they can stay together. They have been there about a month now.

    It is a really nice place, there are more opportunities for Mum to have some social interaction and more things to keep her occupied. I doubt whether we could find anywhere more suitable but they both keep asking to "go home". They have not lived at home for over a year and we have cleared the house and it is currently up for sale. She seems to have forgotten the bit in between where they were at a different home, he is more aware but follows her lead in this. However much we tell them that this is not a possibility (and why - which Mum does not accept! She was always absent-minded!) we know she will not remember and will ask again the next time we see her. She is unable to retain information of any kind.

    She hasn't quite forgotten who we are (brother, stepbrother, me, my partner and my son and his daughter are who the ones she sees the most often) but she does get the relationships a bit confused - she has thought at different times that my son is my partner and that my brother and I are a couple and who's children are who's and she asked where her mother is (she died years ago) and so on. We did give her family photos to put up but unfortunately she tore them all up over a period of time before she could be prevented.

    What I am building up to ask is one of the reasons that we moved her closer to me - although she never remembers when she last saw you even if it was only a few hours ago - was because I have not been able to drive over to visit them very often since the end of last year, because I was diagnosed with breast cancer last November and have been undergoing treatment ever since. Whilst I can't visit all the time, I can see her more often now.

    We have been telling her that I have been ill and as she never remembers being told that before it is a fresh illness each time. I have lost my hair with the chemotherapy and I always wear my wig (which I hate!) when I visit, ever since she asked to try and my hat on and wanted to take it off me! BUT it is very hard not telling your own mother something like this - in her old incarnation she would have been very supportive and over the years has been great when I went through divorce and was a single parent for years. Or is that selfish and I would be telling her for my own benefit?

    She imagines a lot of things which become quite important to her but aren't true and often include an anxiety factor that someone has died or that one of us or her are going to get into trouble for something that she has done. None of this ever has any basis in reality - I have been reading about delusions with dementia, but we wonder if it comes from something that she has picked up from the TV or heard or has dreamt.

    We were advised by the staff at the previous home that it was not worth telling her for all of the above reasons - she may not remember anyway or remember imperfectly and make it into something that it isn't in her imagination. But I still don't know.

    Any advice???
  2. DickG

    DickG Registered User

    Feb 26, 2006
    Hi Linda

    I am often tempted to tell Mary all that is going on but realise that what is going on is not in her unreal world and only causes confusion. I have become an awful liar - am I ashamed? not at all for it give both of us a certain contentment.


  3. Áine

    Áine Registered User

    Hi Linda

    How difficult to be trying to manage caring for mum, and being ill yourself.

    I can't 'advise' as such, especially at the moment when I'm going through agonies with dad having told him that his brother has died, and wondering (yet again) if I've done the right thing.

    But one of the important thoughts that someone suggested when I was trying to think whether to tell dad about his brother or not, was that perhaps dad had the right to be told once - to have the chance to know and be upset, and share this with the rest of the family. But then if he kept forgetting and asking me how my Uncle was, to not continue to tell him that he'd died, but try to side step the issue, so he didn't repeat the grief and the shock over and over again.

    The other important thing that I continually try to remind myself of ....... and continually fail to listen to myself saying :( ...... is that there most probably isn't a Right Answer - there's pros and cons to all options, and no ideal solution. I also suspect that when were dealing with a mental condition that varies and deteriorates, what is 'right' can change from day to day.

    best wishes

  4. Norman

    Norman Registered User

    Oct 9, 2003
    Birmingham Hades
    Hi Dick
    like you I do try to tell Peg what is happening in the world but it is a waste of time and I too have become an expert liar.
    Peg often confirms this (that I am a liar)in between the other threats,so I must be a liar!!
  5. noelphobic

    noelphobic Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    Unless Peg is lying :eek:
  6. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    #6 Margarita, Apr 22, 2006
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2006

    When my mum sister was dieing & I had to go to Gibraltar to sort things out & mum was in a care home, my mum sister did die.

    I phone care home asking them for help in how I should tell mum, they said that they would gently break it to her, during a build up of 3 days.

    When I got back to UK to pick mum up was told that she could not sleep for a few nights, she was upset & ask me about it all for 2 weeks, but now does not talk about it as she says it hurts her leg .

    Who really know what is going on with your mum or any love one with AD mind ? but confusion, may be somewhere in your mum mind there a memory of you talling her anout being ill

    I would take the advice of the care home
  7. dmc

    dmc Registered User

    Mar 13, 2006
    Hi linda

    Im so sorry your having such a bad time at the moment, hope you will soon be well.

    my nan died when mum was ok, so she grieved for her then, then mum had a heart attack, suffered brain damage resulting in short term memory loss, she didnt remember nan dying, so we told her again, which left her griefstricken again, now she has dementia, and talks about my nan as if she's still here as well as other family members who have since gone, weve decided she,s grieved enough and just go along with her, to see her grieving again would just be too much,
    but thats just my experience and my views with this particular situation, i think you have to go with what your feeling would be best, for you and mum.

    good luck its a hard choice to make.

    best wishes

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