I don't know what to do!!

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by brightspark, Sep 19, 2006.

  1. brightspark

    brightspark Registered User

    Apr 23, 2006
    #1 brightspark, Sep 19, 2006
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2006
    I have been a member since April but this is the first time I have posted anything, I suppose I have been unable to admit that there is a problem but now I am beginning to feel desperate. My husband has a problem with his short term memory, he repeats himself all the time and asks the same questions over and over despite the fact that I have given him the answer over and over, sometimes within the space of a few minutes. I have been trying to persaude him to go to the doctors but he refuses and despite me telling him how it is affecting me he says that he is happy as he is and I will have to learn to live with it!! I feel so lost I don't know what to do or where to turn can someone please advise me.
  2. mel

    mel Registered User

    Apr 30, 2006
    Hi brightspark
    I wonder if you could see your GP on your own behalf and explain how hard you're finding things at the moment and at the same time explain your fears about your husband....they may be able to arrange a blood test to rule other things out ,but I'm sure you'll get some advice from them.....
    I'm sure you'll get some advice from others here too
    Keep posting
    and take care
    Love xx
  3. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    My Mother wont go near the doctor because she does not want to hear and sure as heck will refuse to believe whats wrong with her

    Its fear,denial and a major part of the illness their brain becomes their own barrier to the truth

    Hence the agression that results because as far as they are concerned its the rest of the world thats mad

    Write a letter to his doctor getting all the problems on paper and thus on record
    Some doctors may then arrange to call patients in for a routine medical on a pretext

    Meanwhile download forms for an EPA from guardianship office website and get himj to sign it in front of a witness

    sort out finances so that you have control

    do things now before it gets worse
  4. ElaineMaul

    ElaineMaul Registered User

    Jan 29, 2005
    Dear Brightspark,
    Like Mel said, I persuaded my Mum to see her Doctor about my Dad from the point of view of the effect it was having on her. Their Doctor was brilliant, checking Dad on his next visit (he sees the Doctor regularly because of his other medication) and she progressed it from there.
    With the EPA .... we wondered if Dad would object. However, you don't mention if you have children or other family members? The way we did it was for the suggestion to come from me and for both my Mum and my Dad to fill in EPA forms ....... I said that a friend had had terrible problems sorting out their parents affairs. Luckily my Dad has always valued my judgement. I explained everything about what it meant (he was, and actually still is up to a point, able to understand) and he signed without any fuss.
    BTW you don't need a solicitor ....... the forms are quite easy and they have a Help Line phone number if you have any queries. Can't remember the URL at the moment but I know it's been posted on this forum somewhere before.
    Take care.
  5. Kathleen

    Kathleen Registered User

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Sussex
    Hello Wendy

    I agree with the others, you need to let the doctor know what is happening and your husbands health is the priority, so go alone to start with and get the ball rolling.

    We got Mum to the GP initially for a "routine" age related blood pressure check, she was almost 70, so believed us luckily.

    Whatever is causing the memory problems, it is better to know, the unknown is far more frightening, your husband is not being difficult on purpose, I would imagine he is every bit as worried as you are.

    Good luck and let us know what happens.

  6. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    Guardianship office, forms and help line


    They really are very helpful on the help line. My recommendation is that you always check anything you wish to do EPA-wise with them, and also confirm with the Alzheimer's Society legal beagle as well.
  7. Gromit

    Gromit Registered User

    Apr 3, 2006
    Hi Brightspark,
    Your story sounds so familiar - but in my case with my Dad. Other TP members will be able to attest to my pulling out my hair trying to get him to the doctor, especially for my Mum's sake. He too is very repeatative but doesn't think there is a problem or just refers to it being old age -(he's only 69) very stubborn.
    I phoned his Doctor to try and get him in for a routine check - the doctor didn't act upon this. However, my Mum went to her Doctor (they don't have the same doc but at the same practice) who empathised much more with my Mum - plus my Mum's blood pressure had increased alot (again no doubt stress related). Anyway the Doctor offered to make a home visit on the pretence of visiting Mum. We worried what Dad might say - but it has worked wonderfully - whilst the Doc was there she said she noticed that Dad hadn't had a blood pressure check for a while - and that's when she started examining him. Did a memory test on him and then suggested that it would be worthwhile going for more tests. He promised to do this - and so far so good. We are currently waiting for a specialist clinic appointment and Dad has more blood tests next week. But he seems quite pleased with what is happening - never thought I would say that. I think having a professional opinion/instruction has made him realise that he needs checking over.
    Though he does forget what he is being checked for and also can't remember the appointments!!! Good job Mum can!

    Can you talk to your Doctor - it will most certainly be impacting your health too - so there is a duty of care for your Doctor to sort it out!!!
    Good luck - and let me know how you get on - I can certainly relate to your situation.
  8. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Hi Brightspark

    I had exactly the same concerns about my husband in 2004. I wrote them down and went to see my GP by myself.

    Before I went, I jotted down my concerns, eg. repeated questions, continually looking at the calendar, losing interest in the paper, getting confused by the kitchen cupboards and putting dishes away in the wrong place.

    As it was the time of year for a flu jab, he suggested I book an appointment for both of us, and said he`d take it from there.

    We went for flu jabs, the GP spoke to my husband, and, although my husband was in denial, as I suspect your husband is, we had made a start.

    I have to say, it took several more visits before my husband would allow us to book further tests, but the door had been opened and the GP was aware of the problem.

    Even now, my husband is suspicious. He knows he has AD, but says he doesn`t mind seeing the practice nurse but hates seeing the Doctor, as he always finds something wrong with him.

    Good Luck Grannie G
  9. brightspark

    brightspark Registered User

    Apr 23, 2006
    Thanks for all the kind advice

    Thanks everyone for all your thoughts. I have added the guardianship website to my favourites in case I need it for future use, I have been thinking for a long time about seeing my own doctor who is in the same practice as my husbands. I had already mentioned something to my husbands doctor but he was not very forthcoming and said he could not do anything unless my husband came to see him and I should tell my husband how it was affecting me which I have done on numerous occasions but to no avail, except for him to say that he is happy as he is and I will have to learn to live with it! How selfish and hurtful was tha? Anyway I think I will do as most of you suggest and see my own doctor and do as Grannie G suggests and note down my concerns before I go. My husband does have regular blood tests now to keep an eye on him for the drugs he is on for his rheumatoid arthritis so maybe that could be a way in somehow. Any way once again thanks and I will keep you posted as to how things go. Its just so good to know that there are people out there who have gone through the same thing themselves and can let others knnow of their experiences.
  10. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Hiya Brightspark,
    If it is the start of dementia, your husband will be in denial - if you thought that your brain was slowly going to deteriorate, would you want to entertain the thought? So if it does occur to him that there is something wrong, no doubt he pushes the thought out of his head as soon as it pops in. My mum was a very gentle, caring lady (still is), but it took me a long time to get her to go to the GP. When she did, he said 'It happens to us all, don't worry about it' (Great!) - It was a couple of years before I could get her to go again - and that was as a result of a lot of tears from me and begging.
    I don't know your husband's character, but it may help you to think of it being 'his condition' and fear, that is making him reluctant to take it further at present, rather than him being 'selfish and hurtful'.
    Love Helen
  11. brightspark

    brightspark Registered User

    Apr 23, 2006
    it's so difficult

    You are probably right Amy but it is so difficult to accept when someone has said something like that to you. You say you don't know my husbands character, well he is very stubborn and narrow minded. He doesn't like people telling him what he should do and he is always right. He has always been one for making comments which he knows upset me (I have never been able to find out why). He has a caring side but I don't see much of it these days and I suppose you will say that is to do with his condition as well! I' sorry if I sound very bitter but that's just how I feel at the moment.

    I have seen my doctor today but came away feeling just as depressed. She has said that I should try and persuade my husband to go to the doctors with me, I have told her that I have tried but to no avail but she says I should try again saying that I had spoken to my doctor just to see if it was worth him going and that she has said it definitely is so that they can check to see if there is anything that could be causing the problem. If that fails she says that they could try writing to him for a general check up or to mention it to his rheumatolgy doctor at the hospital and see if she will refer him for assessment. I don't know if it's going to work!!!!!!!
  12. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Hiya Brightspark,
    You have every right to feel bitter - not a good feeling to be banging your head against a brick wall!! It does sound as though your GP is prepared 'to play ball.'
    Don't give up, try the tactics that she has suggested - maybe you'll catch him with his guard down one day. I'm sorry that you don't see much of his caring side; that must make it so much more difficult for you - not only feeling unappreciated, but actively got at. Just one day at a time - and you know that you have friends here to share the bad bits with.
    Take care,
    Love Helen
  13. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    Whatever you do its vital to set up EPAs

    Do not delay

    Suggest that it is only sensible for you to both have EPAs so that if something happens things are in place for your children etc to deal with things

    Its no good waiting till his dementia gets worse as then it might be too late

    The only good thing my Mother did 10 years ago was sign an EPA ,we only wish she had followed through on setting up a trust because that would truly have made life a lot easier along with not being so darn secretive about everything and making such a hash of things

    Its taken months to sort out the chaos she created and i am still not at the end of it

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