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Irrational behaviour and anger

Treacle612

New member
Jul 22, 2021
2
0
Hello all,
This is my first post in here and I’m not quite sure how this works but I am at a point now where I feel I need support of others in a similar situation as myself.
My dad got diagnosed with Alzheimer’s 3 years ago and is taking donepezil 10mg and recently he’s been prescribed memantine but not started taking them yet. My mum is struggling to cope with it all and I think she’s in denial or wanting to cope all herself with it. He has recently started to get more confused to the point he knows people are talking about ‘this illness’ as he puts it but he doesn’t believe he has so he gets angry.
I just don’t know how to help him and mum to get through this period.
I feel useless and so unhelpful. I feel I shouldn’t tell him as he doesn’t understand and it’s not helpful, and my mum only tried to explain things but he doesn’t accept it and gets so angry with her.

many help would be so much appreciated! Thank you!!
 

silkiest

Registered User
Feb 9, 2017
365
0
Hi @Treacle612 and welcome,
it is very common for people with dementia to not believe they have it. Theres no point trying to convince them as they will get annoyed. When we have problems with mum or mum in law that are dementia related we try and blame other things such as "old age" or change the subject. Lots of people on here talk about "love lies" which is basically giving reasons or excuses that the person with dementia will find acceptable to avoid confrontations and stress. The reasoning for this is that often that the PWD does not remember the details of the argument but will remember the emotions plus confrontation will stress you also. My dad finds it very difficult coping with mums dementia but he is slowly learning that trying to reason with someone who has lost the power to think everything through rationally will not work.
I started MIL off with cleaners then moved to a caring service that cleans to get her used to the idea of people coming in and now she has carers twice daily. If you can get regular carers visiting it should relieve some of the pressure on your mum - even if its just to visit a couple of times weekly so your mum can go for a coffee with friends etc. . If you both feel dad is not at that stage then maybe try support groups or clubs to give them outside contact and a break from the routine.
You can search at the top of the page to see how people have dealt with different problems or just ask about specific problems that you have.
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
6,256
0
N Ireland
Hello @Treacle612 and welcome from me too

I wonder if you may find any local support services like a memory café to be of some use. You can do a post code check to see what's available to you by following this link https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/find-support-near-you

The full list of the very informative Factsheets can be found with this link https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/get-support/publications-factsheets-full-list

As communicating has become an issue, a few handy tips can be picked from the useful thread that can be reached with this link https://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/threads/compassionate-communication-with-the-memory-impaired.30801/
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
2,726
0
@Treacle612 Not accepting a diagnosis is so very common. My dad was told straight to his face by the nurse and then later by the consultant at the memory clinic and each time he said he understood fully but the moment we were out of earshot he said 'they don't know what they are talking about, my memory is just what you would expect it to be at my age' so I never mentioned it again, none of us did. Dad accepted he had slight memory problem and he was happy to take his memory tablets because they might help him but he never had dementia.

As far as your dad is concerned it is probably you and your mum who are being irrational with thinking that he has this disease because he hasn't and that makes him angry because he thinks that you are making it up and possibly plotting things behind his back. I am sorry but that is how he will think.

If he cannot accept it then it is no good trying to explain. Slight memory problem seems the way to go and causes least upset all round.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,014
0
My dad is the same, he doesn't think he has dementia, has blotted out memories of diagnosis etc. I suspect this makes his isolation worse as he lives in a small sociable village but people don't know where to look when he talks obvious nonsense, especially about his plans to get a car and resume driving. I suspect people who might otherwise have had a chat avoid doing so, it is difficult for them as they are polite people who wouldn't tell him that he was talking nonsense.
 

Treacle612

New member
Jul 22, 2021
2
0
Thank you for your responses! Sorry this is a late reply to you all. We have found a social group in our town for my dad to go to once a week to begin with. It isn’t a specific dementia group (not sure dad would accept going to one of those at this stage) however the leaders are aware of dads condition. This at least give my mum a break. Tbh I’m struggling with mum more than dad atm because she won’t accept things. I keep trying to help her. And explain that the way she speaks to dad needs to change slightly but like she says after 45 years of speaking and talking she’s finding it very difficult. I’m wondering if there are some online advice I can do to help with communication so I can learn and help pass on to mum. Some of you have already given good advice and links so thank you for that 😊
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
3,571
0
Hi @Treacle612 , this thread Compassionate Communication with the Memory Impaired might give you some tips you can pass on to your mum.
Don't beat yourselves up if you don't always manage it, I found it very tricky to do with my mum at times, but if we did, it helped. Classic example is my mum being convinced the neighbours were stealing from her (they weren't). My husband told mum straight out she was wrong. I tried logic 'Is it more likely that you've hidden them and can't remember where, or that your neighbour sneaked into your small flat and stole your false teeth?'. The only thing that stopped mum going on about it was my brother suggesting a glass of wine and a good film on the TV. Distraction is the way to go if you can.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
1,014
0
The only thing that stopped mum going on about it was my brother suggesting a glass of wine and a good film on the TV. Distraction is the way to go if you can.
This makes a welcome change from the usual advice to proffer a piece of cake. I have a vision of the nation's dementia patients being treated for obesity owing to the vast amounts of cake used as a distraction!
 

Seaholly

Registered User
Oct 12, 2020
97
0
@Sarasa , that phrase should be flown behind a plane over the house of every carer, every day!
"Don't beat yourself up if you don't always manage it!"

Dealing with this awful set of diseases is like chasing shadows at times and we all mis-judge situations and try things that don't work. We do it time and time again, but the point is, we're there for our loved ones and we keep on trying.

As time goes by, you do learn to take things less personally and understand more about dementia and all its nasty tricks. I've just returned from a visit to my mum that 3 years ago would have left me in tears and now I'm just mindful that she had absolutely no idea what she was saying; she hadn't woken up properly and thankfully for her, she won't recall a word of what she said :) What matters is that I was there for her - as we all are!