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Mum wants to move as she see's dad as a stranger


Registered User
Jul 12, 2015

My mum was recently diagnosed with Alzheimer's at 75, and she is at the moderate stage. We have noticed the signs for about the last three and a half years, but she has got worse in the last 9 months.
She started to forget who my dad is a few months ago, and is starting to forget who me and my siblings are at times. Over the last few days, she has been seeing dad as a complete stranger and has even said that she wants to phone the Police to get him to go! She keeps asking him where he lives and gets upset about it, especially at night. Myself and my brother and sister keep saying that he is her husband of 56 years, but she is adamant that he is not. Even after showing her photo's, she still says that he is a stranger. Today, I spoke to her and she says she wants to move and live with her sister (who lives locally), who has carers herself due to a physical condition. We have convinced her for now that this would not be a good idea, but we are worried that she is getting so stressed with dad and also how this is affecting dad (he is 81 years old).


Registered User
Feb 11, 2015
Hi Ginger1973, welcome to TP. I'm bumping this up as I think posts can get lost on the Welcome thread. Hopefully others with lots more experience than me will be along to offer some better advice but my one thought is how to tackle things when Mum is getting agitated and this thread on Compassionate Communcation might help - http://forum.alzheimers.org.uk/show...ionate-Communication-with-the-Memory-Impaired

The other thing is how much day to day help is your Dad getting - do they have carers coming in at all, or a sitting service to give your Dad a break, even for a few hours?

Hope some others come along soon with more help for you.


Registered User
Oct 5, 2013
Your mum is living in the past, maybe when she was a little girl. Therefore he cannot be her husband. Easy - if you have dementia! This point of view should disappear eventually, meanwhile read the reference above and try a few little dementia white lies. I became my husbands carer - his wife had asked me to look after him while she was out - which worked, but left me feeling a bit schizophrenic! Something will probably work!
Good luck!

Edited to say, do as Essie suggests, get some sitters or respite Carers in, or he could go to day care. It all adds up to a break.