How can I stop losing my patience!

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by debbiea, May 22, 2006.

  1. debbiea

    debbiea Registered User

    May 22, 2006
    11
    I live 200 miles away from my Mum so don't see her that often and I find when I do visit I lose my patience and temper so easily. For instance, last time I visited she was saying that a large amount of money had gone missing from her house and I just lost my temper as I felt she was accusing me. How should my family and I react to this kind of situation? We seem to spend hours looking for things which she has hidden (particularly money) - she seems to be accusing everyone of taking them. Also, how should we react when she does things like making tea time things such as sandwiches for breakfast - should we just eat them or say to her that she mixed up with the time? We are new to all of this and she hasn't even been diagnosed yet so she doesn't know that there is anything wrong with her.:(
     
  2. johnw

    johnw Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    34
    manchester
    #2 johnw, May 22, 2006
    Last edited: May 22, 2006
    understanding

    Debbiea, I don't know if you've seen the other `threads` on this forum, such as the poetry section, but you will find many folks on the forum are able to give you some help in understanding the situation you are going through. I for one have been going through this type of thing for many years now, especially the hiding of things. I only found the missing teapot a couple of days ago in a wardrobe underneath some jumpers. My sweet wife does no longer handle or even know about money. Knives and spoons are no longer left about or they have soon gone forever. The food preperation is my domain because she can't even brew a cup of tea etc, so that's another avenue she finds blocked. The accusing of thieft is very common, not in our household, but in others with `dementia`that I've know. There's been other messages of this kind of thing on this forum to, so you'll now understand you are not alone. Keep visiting the forum and you'll have a place with understanding friends to help in any way they can.
    Pockets are a favourite place for hiding things. I try and keep an eye on the kitchen waste bin and the outside bin where I recently found the kitchen sink plug.
    Take care and try not to lose your patience / temper if Mum's in earshot. Her world is not one of order any more. Hugs
     
  3. Dave W

    Dave W Registered User

    Jul 3, 2005
    268
    Bucks
    Going for sainthood

    Debbie

    You can only do what you can do, but patience is going to be your most vital asset. Use it wisely! Disagreeing, other than gently and sparingly, doesn't, I'm afraid, yield much dividend: your Mum is doing these things because she can't tell she's getting them 'wrong'. All you can do is your best - like try getting to leave things in the same place every time (although you'll have to live with the fact that she won't). The factsheets on behaviour and coping with it might be helpful too.

    How far are her GP and any others involved? It sounds like you're getting close to a stage where some domestic support will be necessary for safety's sake, and a GP's involvement is usually a good place to start. (I'm sure she doesn't know anything is wrong with her, but you should prepare yourself for the fact that she may never do that - or may never accept that there is a 'problem'.) You'll be up against the 'normal' - for TP - dilemma of how to get her to the GP, or vice versa. Is the GP already aware there may be an issue developing? Is he your previous family GP and would it be possible to speak to him to voice your concerns? Although your Mum might resent it, getting him involved sooner rather than later will start balls rolling that mean other help can be involved (although be aware that she might be highly resistant to this). And are there other family members or neighbours who can be involved in keeping an eye or provided some support (to her and to you?)

    Post again and let us all know more - we'll try to be as much help as we can.
     
  4. debbiea

    debbiea Registered User

    May 22, 2006
    11
    Hi, thank you for your replies. My two sisters live in the same street as Mum and are now doing her housework and making sure she is eating OK. I feel sorry for them because for years they couldn't see that anything was wrong with her and now they feel guilty. Only I noticed because I wasn't seeing her so much so any problems were magnified and also when I was with her it was over 24 hour periods. A couple of months ago though I had to insist that they got the GP out. The GP arranged an assessment and a chest xray which Mum has had but she is still awaiting a brain scan in June. I'm so relieved things are finally moving as I first noticed things were starting to go wrong about 8 years ago. I feel awful though when I lose my temper with her as it must be dreadful for her. Her memory is really bad now, for instance, when she returned from her hospital appts I asked how she got on but she couldn't remember where she had been or what she had had done! Fortunately she can still remember our names and who we are and I'm so dreading the day she can't.
     
  5. Lynne

    Lynne Registered User

    Jun 3, 2005
    3,433
    Suffolk,England
    Me too

    :eek: Just a line to let you know you're not the only one feeling awful Debbie!
    Last week I really lost it with my Mum bigtime, then just sat & howled buckets & apologised and told her I love her etc. etc.
    (Long story, not particularly significant what it was about)
    You just wish the floor would open up & drop you straight down to Hell, don't you, when that happens.
     
  6. mojofilter

    mojofilter Registered User

    May 10, 2006
    130
    St.Helens
    I come close to losing it with my mum during the night..... Sometimes she can get out of bed 20 times during the night and if that happens 3 or 4 nights on the run then my defences drop and I really have to watch myself.

    I think I've perfected the art of turning my back on her and silently screaming at the bedroom door :eek:

    It's funny but I've been much calmer since finding this website... Strange but true :)

    Paul
     
  7. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    10,824
    london
    I’m no Angel & in the past have lost my temper with mum since being on TP & learning more about AD & what is happening to the brain, I don’t lose my temper with her & am much more patience, what I do is smile to myself roll my eyes up :rolleyes: count to ten think of TP doing while doing all this the moment passes I smile at mum & give her a kiss or hug or just laugh & try & change the subject .

    Don’t feel guilty Debbiea well try not to ,we all done it You’ve drop by the right place in internet land welcome to TP :)
     
  8. Libby

    Libby Registered User

    May 20, 2006
    625
    North East
    Debbie

    That's how my mum started off - hiding her money - then she would accuse poor dad of not giving her any. We'd find it in her pants drawer, wrapped up in her nightie, in coat pockets - in books, even in an old teapot at the back of a cupboard! She never realised how rich she was! Now when i go and see her in the home, she always insists on giving me something for going in to see her - 10p, 15p etc - just something to treat myself with!

    I have found myself losing patience with her, but at least she's in a home, and at the end of the day, I know I can walk away and that it'll all be forgotten within 2 minutes. When she was at home, I used to take her shopping and she used to drive me potty - I'd be putting things in her trolley and she'd be taking them out, saying she couldn't afford them. So then when she turned around, I'd have to sneak them back in! Then when it came to the checkout, she'd practiacally be having a panic attack at what the bill was going to be. (It was very rarely over 40 pounds!)

    It all seems so long ago now, her memory is so much worse now, but when I go and see her she still knows who I am (although she's constantly telling my brother that she never sees me!!)

    I've only been a member of this site for a couple of days, but I have found it so helpful to 'chat' to other people in the same position.

    Libby
     
  9. mel

    mel Registered User

    Apr 30, 2006
    1,656
    Sheffield
    Hi debbiea
    Haven't got much more to offer than what's already been said....yes my mum accuses me and my brother of stealing her money,yes she hides money(also in her pants drawer),yes she hides various other things...mainly toilet rolls and soap....now she is living with us I must have the tidiest kids in the world because they know if they leave anything lying around it'll disappear...my youngest lost a gameboy game....where did we find it?.....in mum's pocket....her cardigan pockets and her handbag are usually full to bursting:confused:
    Like Lynne I lost it big time with mum last week and I felt SOOOOOO bad but of course mum forgets......we have to bear the guilt:( :(
    Wendy
     
  10. May

    May Registered User

    Oct 15, 2005
    627
    Yorkshire
    Hi debbiea
    We're all human, it's human to 'lose it' once in a while, it's because we care. I found that if I try to visualise the disease doing and saying these things :eek: not my Mum, it helps me control my reactions long enough to think of a sideways step to try and defuse the situation. It's a no win corner, so confronting it just gets everyone het up, diversion and distraction are the order of the day. Learn to tell all the 'white lies' necessary, I know we have all learned to do this (just ask any TP'er;) ). it really is better in the long run. If all else fails then it's a case of backing off until Mum's ready to let go of that particular thought, not easy I know:(

    Take care
     
  11. LindaD

    LindaD Registered User

    Nov 17, 2004
    30
    Suffolk
    Patience

    I have found it hard to stay patient with Mum on many many occasions - when we are having the same conversation over and over again - and have had to go outside to calm down. I have lost my temper too and left her to it (she is in a home so that helps). And I have cried with frustration and grief!

    The money thing is interesting, she would hide money - from notes to small change all over the house, you could find a fortune if you looked hard enough, and then always be saying she didn't have any money. She still does it now to a lesser degree as she only has a little bit of change, at the home.

    At one point, when she was still allowed out alone and had access to her bank she drew out hundreds of pounds (without a cheque book or a card as the staff knew her) over several days and we have absolutely no idea what she did with it. We think she either lost it or gave it to a stranger! We spoke to the bank who were a little concerned by then themselves and stopped allowing her out alone - which was hard for her.

    When we cleared her house out we had a competition to see who could find the most hidden cash!
     
  12. Rosalind

    Rosalind Registered User

    Jul 2, 2005
    203
    Wiltshire
    I doubt there is anyone on this site who has not lost their patience. When I am being driven nuts I try to just remove myself from the situation - I spend hours doing stupid computer games rather than being in the same room as my husband. Doesn't always work - very close to blowing my top the other day I went out into the garden, which was freezing cold and he complains about cold all the time, so thought I would get some space, only to have him follow me out there.
    Can only suggest diversionary tactics when the subject that most gets on your nerves comes up - Look, was that a squirrel? Let's go into town and buy you some shoes, etc Or go somewhere private and scream. Or, as I did the other day, start crying and be unable to stop, which actually had some effect on husband, as nearly all the time I don't show my distress. Our recent contretemps was about him going into a care home for a week, as he just is not safe on his own now and I have to go on a course. I just wailed that everytime he said he did not want to go it turned the knife in me, and made me feel dreadful, even though the actual reason for my going was something that would ultimately be to both our benefit. So he did his all reasonable bit, and said of course I should go, and he would to to the place he didn't want to go to. He did not remember saying this later, but for one brief moment he did seem to be on my side, and if I do a bit of a wobbly lip now he backs off.
    When you are at screaming point it is terribly hard to remember that you have been there before and then it got better again.
     
  13. debbiea

    debbiea Registered User

    May 22, 2006
    11
    Thank you for all your help. I'm off to see Mum this weekend, let's see how I get on.
     
  14. Áine

    Áine Registered User

    one other thought .... from my experience ......... try not to get impatient with yourself for being impatient with your loved one :( i've found that the more angry I get with myself for getting angry with dad, the worse it gets until I end up one angry despairing heap :eek: we all get angry ..... carers and people with dementia alike, it's human to get frustrated and angry and that doesn't change just because someone is ill and we're trying to care for them.

    good luck for the weekend debbiea ;)
     
  15. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    621
    Kent
    Losing my patience

    I find it quite difficult going to see Mum in the home because I never know what to expect. I try to go when I am feeling calm to start with and not in a rush or feeling stressed. I also try and take something with me to talk about, like some fruit, flowers, a picture or even a dog. It is much easier to have something to focus on. It is hard hearing the same things many times but good if she smiles or laughs. I don't get so annoyed with her now I know she's being well looked after but I dread it when she keeps crying. There is no easy answer.
     

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