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Mother in-law is in denial that she is old and is getting forgetful

Lindylou1969

New member
Mar 27, 2020
3
Boomi
My mother in-law is 90 and is in denial that she is old she is do a lot of risky things plus we have noticed she is getting forgetful a lot she talks to her self and hides soiled and wet underwear we have tried to get her to wear incontinent underwear but it comes with her getting very snappy and angry with us she doesn't sleep at night and walks around the house but will fall asleep in the day in her chair she hides used tissue and soiled toilet paper in her draws in her bedroom we are pulling our hair out as she is very secretive if she is sick like when she has a UTI or the runs we find out because she spends lengthy times in the bathroom showering is our next big problem she won't shower at all unless we push her to do this she can't see but is in denial about it and can't hear also in denial about that too does anyone have the same problem
 

Woo2

Registered User
Apr 30, 2019
1,721
South East
Hi @Lindylou1969 , welcome to tp from me . Yes everything you say it’s something most of us have/are going through . Have a read through threads if you haven’t already and you will find lots of helpful tips , compassionate communication is another great read and really helps , I haven’t learnt how to add a link to it so hopefully somebody will be along soon who can do that . Have you had needs assesments done by ss , applied for attendance allowance and Lpa ‘s in place ?
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,251
South coast
Hello @Lindylou1969
I was unsure from what you have written, whether your MIL actually has a diagnosis, if not that is the place to start. It may be difficult to get her to go to the doctors, though. Try writing a letter the him/her explaining the problems that you have mentioned in your post - it will go in her records and the GP will see it. Some GPs are willing to send in a request for a "well woman check";);) in order to get them there.

The things that you have mentioned are, unfortunately, all things that can happen with dementia. Many people with dementia lose the self awareness to understand that they have something wrong with themselves and therefore take great pains to hide all the evidence. Its not actually denial, its a thing called anosognosia, which is a common symptom of dementia.

Here is the link that @Woo2 mentioned. You may find it helpful
 

Roseleigh

Registered User
Dec 26, 2016
315
Hi, Lindylou
I agree with Canary you do need to get her a diagnosis, which may be tricky during this Covid lockdown. You could write as Canary says, email or ring the GP surgery and explain to the receptionist and ask if your MiLs GPI can call you back.
You need to emphasise that you now believe your Mil is ''at risk of harming herself'' though if they are to make her a priority case at this terrible time. Tell the GP about the unnhygienic practices and how this is putting he r health in danger as well as any other potentially lethal stuff , fire risks or wandering etc.
 

Lindylou1969

New member
Mar 27, 2020
3
Boomi
Hi, Lindylou
I agree with Canary you do need to get her a diagnosis, which may be tricky during this Covid lockdown. You could write as Canary says, email or ring the GP surgery and explain to the receptionist and ask if your MiLs GPI can call you back.
You need to emphasise that you now believe your Mil is ''at risk of harming herself'' though if they are to make her a priority case at this terrible time. Tell the GP about the unnhygienic practices and how this is putting he r health in danger as well as any other potentially lethal stuff , fire risks or wandering etc.
She has been diagnosed but she won't admit she has it and any other problems she has
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,251
South coast
She has been diagnosed
Ok, thank you. In that case you are looking at anosognosia - the lack of self awareness that you have something wrong. You will never get her to admit that she has dementia, or acknowledge her problems - in her mind she is perfectly fine and doesnt have any problems at all. My mum was the same, its very common. I would stop trying to get her to admit her problems, because its never going to work and is just making her angry. Have you read the link I posted about Compassionate Communication? Anything that you want to get her to do you have to start with where she is and will probably involve being "economical with the truth". This is very hard to do, because we are taught to be truthful at all times, but if someone is unable to understand the truth, then you have to come up with alternative explanations that they can understand
 

Bunpoots

Volunteer Host
Apr 1, 2016
4,387
Nottinghamshire
My dad was just the same @Lindylou1969 . He thought he had absolutely nothing wrong with him and, although there were puddles of wee all over the house, he wouldn’t admit he’d done them or wear incontinence pants. I eventually persuaded him to wear them by throwing all his other pants away and telling him the new ones were extra comfy padded pants so his bum didn’t get sore from sitting down all day - and the doctor said he had to wear them. He still argued but I could usually get him to put them on - eventually..
 

Weasell

Registered User
Oct 21, 2019
231
My dad was just the same @Lindylou1969 . He thought he had absolutely nothing wrong with him and, although there were puddles of wee all over the house, he wouldn’t admit he’d done them or wear incontinence pants. I eventually persuaded him to wear them by throwing all his other pants away and telling him the new ones were extra comfy padded pants so his bum didn’t get sore from sitting down all day - and the doctor said he had to wear them. He still argued but I could usually get him to put them on - eventually..
I was just going to post the same idea!
Most people use Tena pants, but cotton washable equivalents can be purchased, better for the purse, planet and may be better received.
( If you do buy cotton ones they come up small!)
 

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