1. Expert Q&A: Benefits - Weds 23 October, 3-4pm

    Our next expert Q&A will be on the topic of benefits. It will be hosted by Lauren from our Knowledge Services team. She'll be answering your questions on Wednesday 23 October between 3-4pm.

    You can either post your question >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.

  1. niknaknoo

    niknaknoo Registered User

    Jan 4, 2015
    6
    Hi

    My mum was diagnosed with early stage dementia towards the end of last year. I've known for some time and was the driving force behind her being assessed and then diagnosed.
    My dad has always been very much alpha male, always in control of things and always had a fairly short fuse!
    My mum is very low and I would say depressed. The poor woman also had to have a mastectomy in November so more than ever needs some careful handling.
    I totally understand how draining it can be with mum sometimes, but my dad doesn't seem to be able to say anything pleasant to her. It's almost as though he blames her for getting Alzheimers, like its her fault! He barks at her and speaks in HR most awful tone of voice......which makes her so anxious. It's uncomfortable to be around. I ended up in a huge argument with my dad (who for his faults I love very much) but half way through me telling him he cannot treat mum like this, he got up and walked out. He has never mentioned this episode since but continues to speak to her appaulingly.
    I'm at my wits end and my mum is like a broken woman. Im not sure who to turn to? I've taken leaflets round to their house and explained there are groups we can all go to.....it falls on deaf ears.....
    Has anyone else experienced anything similar?
     
  2. BeckyJan

    BeckyJan Registered User

    Nov 28, 2005
    18,972
    Derbyshire
    I am really sorry to hear about the situation with your Mum and Dad.

    Perhaps you need to talk to a few folk to get support - eg the GP, or the Mental Health Consultant/Nurse who was involved with the diagnosis and also a Social Worker. All of them should be aware of a domestic situation where the 'carer' objects to interference, but somehow it has to be emphasised that they have a responsibility to help your Mother. Please use the words 'she is vulnerable' as it may make them take more notice.

    If only your Dad would listen to someone as it could be your Mum could go to a day centre at least once a week - this would give him some spare time.

    Also you could try ringing the local branch of the Alzheimer's Society as some have Dementia Support Workers and may offer you, and hopefully your Dad too, some advice. You can find the local branch here:
    http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/scripts/documents.php?categoryID=200121

    Don't worry if the branch seems far away as they tend to cover wide areas.

    Others will no doubt be along soon to offer their thoughts.
    Best wishes
     
  3. joggyb

    joggyb Registered User

    Dec 1, 2014
    119
    Would your Dad read a book about dementia? If so, I really recommend Oliver James' book, 'Contented Dementia'. It's very helpful in explaining how the person with dementia sees their world and why they might respond in ways that seem strange to a non-dementia sufferer. If your Dad could be persuaded to read it, it might give him pause for thought - and cause to change his behaviour around your mum. From what you have described, the way he's acting at the moment certainly won't be helping her, and is most likely adding to her confusion and distress.
     
  4. CeliaW

    CeliaW Registered User

    Jan 29, 2009
    5,655
    Hampshire
    #4 CeliaW, Feb 5, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2015
    Hello niknaknoo - what a horrible situation for you all to be in. You have had some great advice which I hope will help and I do hope you can get some local support.

    Your Dad sounds a bit like mine was (thankfully he died long before Mum had any sign of dementia) but it made me wonder if his behaviour is made worse out of fear? Fear as what will happen, fearful that he can't really control how dementia progresses with your Mum and of what impact it is having (and will have) on both their lives. When an "outside agency" in any form, had significant input into any part of our lives it made my Dad ten times worse. I know realising that won't change the situation as such, but it might help a teeny bit when you are having to cope and support your Mum.

    Keep posting and big supportive cyber hugs for you. Take care.

    PS - you mention telling him that he couldn't treat your Mum that way - that would have been like a red rag to a bull to my Dad! Would it maybe work if you asked him WHY he treats her as he does ? It might just make him stop and think a bit...
     
  5. marionq

    marionq Registered User

    Apr 24, 2013
    5,861
    Female
    Scotland
    I would say your Dad feels huge resentment at the dementia and since it is your mother who has it then he resents her. We mostly have expectations of how our retirement will pan out and a spouse in a constant state of confusion and need is not what we signed up for. Some handle it better than others and some handle it well at one stage and badly at another stage.

    I was quite buoyant two years ago and conscious I was doing a good job. Now, I have moments of despair and yes resentment - not against my husband who is a nice person, good natured, clean and continent. So, even knowing I am quite fortunate, I want my own life back and I guess so does your Dad.

    If however you feel he seriously is mean to your mother then she is better out of there and being looked after elsewhere. Only you know how bad it is.
     
  6. niknaknoo

    niknaknoo Registered User

    Jan 4, 2015
    6
    Hello all......thank you wll do much for your responses. I'm going to try the book thing with dad (thank you for the recommendation) and see how that goes. I also spoke to a nurse at the memory clinic that has met both my parents as well as me and my sister......she has suggested letting her know when we are the local dementia cafe and if ( a big if) we manage to get dad there too she will arrange for a male counsellor to be there and try to talk to dad. Failing that she has offered to make a home visit to see how things are.

    I keep changing my mind about why he's being like this.......???

    On the upside my mum has started walking/jogging to her little paper shop- she's only done it twice but the change in her voice was fab to hear today

    Thank you all for your support xxxxxxx
     
  7. henfenywfach

    henfenywfach Registered User

    May 23, 2013
    333
    rct
    Hi!..my dad has dementia dlb..hes been my mums carer due to her spine problems..now he needs care and even a day after being on carers course..crisp.run by the society..still when he gets things wrong is still arguing with him correcting him...i keep saying what the course help us deal with does it matter if he got the wrong pub name?..so what!!!
    She can describe all symptoms and talks the talk..then allow him to go out on his own..he has tias and looses balance..i know she cares but i get so annoyed...when he has to still do everything!..he carries two cups of tea..and with bad tremours tips it everywhere..burning a risk..still she sits there and when hes carrying the tray in..sends him out for the salt!..it annoys me so much..i bought him a trolley!...

    I even wrote her a letter saying i couldnt sit back and watch her speak to him like that...she denies it..and might not be aware shes doing it..but at least listen to me.

    All you can do is keep telling him and hope it ll get through!..id contact the alzheimers society support workers to come and visit..it might help you all

    Good luck

    Sent from my GT-I9505 using Talking Point mobile app
     

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