1. mandyp

    mandyp Registered User

    Oct 20, 2004
    150
    Glasgow
    Dad has taken Mum away for a couple of days. It seems there was an ‘incident’ and he felt she needed cheering up.

    I don’t have all the details as he didn’t want to tell me while she was there but he did get a chance to speak to my husband briefly so I have half of the story.

    They were at Sainsburys at the checkout, Dad was packing the bags, Mum was passing him the stuff to put in the bags except it seems that she was passing things before the girl had actually scanned them through. Dad is blind in one eye, so this was happening on his blind side. Next thing he knew, the security guard was tapping him on the shoulder. This is as far as he got with the story as Mum came out of the toilet and he couldn’t continue telling my husband what happened. I’m sure he must’ve got it cleared up, but this has the potential to be a pretty awful situation.

    Anyone experienced anything similar, any advice on how to deal with it. With Mum being young, people don’t expect behaviour like this (actually I’m not sure they would make allowances even if she was older).

    Yet another humiliating experience for both Mum and Dad, this is one of the many upsetting things about this. I just know that she will have been mortified. Clearly Dad doesn’t want me to mention it to her.

    Mum still goes out on her own to the shops and this has made me very worried, Dad still wants her to have as much independance as possible, it just worries me so much that something will happen.
     
  2. Dawnb

    Dawnb Registered User

    Mar 2, 2005
    30
    dublin
    Hello Mandy
    sorry to hear about the problem with your mum. My Dad does this frequently, well first he makes sure everything is standing upright on the converbelt ! even when you have tried to put the bottles on there side so they dont fall over. and then as he would not be able to pack the bags he ends up handing you the items like you say before they have been scanned. I just politely tell him that they have to be left down so that the girl can scan them and ask him to come and stand beside you to help.
    I guess if your dad could put the groceries on the belt to be scanned then he could perhaps ask your mum to get the bags ready at the other end, That way it might avoid any embarressing situations ( although there will be lots more to contend with unfortunately)
    Dad once had to use the bathroom and mum told showed him to the toilet in the nearest pub, a few minutes later he was being brought out the door by security as he was just standing in the toilet not knowing where he was. It was very upsetting for my mum and of course dad. But if you can try and politley explain, quietly that things are not great with your mum, people understand.
    Sorry I cant be of more help.
    Take Care
    Dawn
     
  3. TED

    TED Registered User

    Sep 14, 2004
    154
    Middlesex
    hi
    I dont know if this would help or not but when I am out with both Mum and Dad I notice Mum does pick up bits and pieces which Dad doesnt see. Luckily I do, and I'm either able to put them back (to which mum just laughs) or pass them to dad to put in the shopping (its not that often to be fair)

    There was a post here a while ago on the main discussion thread where someone had designed a small descriet card which simply had a message on there explaining mums condition, or that she had Alzhiemers, given my mum is blind as a result of her condition it isnt always apparant unless she's waving her white stick about the place.

    Recently we went to buy shoes, and mum gets really funny with people who are 'poking about with her feet' knowing this could be a problem the first thing I did while Dad was settling her down was talk to the lady who seemed to be in charge and nip it in the bud, after that they couldnt be more helpful.

    Appreciate you cant go round every shop you use and expect them to remember and understand but if it is possible to speak to one of the supervisors in your supermarket (assuming you use the same one most often) they would at least have been made aware, and you might be surprised how much help you get in future. Like I say it cant cover every place you go but you havent anything to lose by giving people the information.

    Dont mean to be stating the obvious or sound condesending at all. I am just thinking of ways to limit the possible 'embarresment' that another incident might cause, while still allowing your Mum her 'freedom' and dignity.

    Hope you all well today
    Enjoy
    TED x
     
  4. cynron

    cynron Registered User

    Sep 26, 2005
    429
    east sussex
    shopping

    Hi Mandy,
    my husband also has to be watched at the check out
    . He does not want anyone to pack , and stands all shopping neatly on belt, i must admit i find it much less strain to do it alone.I was told by a professional that a man left his wife locked in the car while he did a shop he suffered a heart attack and nobody knew about his wife locked in the car.She was discovered by a person who was locking up.
    cynron
     
  5. jc141265

    jc141265 Registered User

    Sep 16, 2005
    836
    Australia
    A suggestion

    Ted I think was referring to my post, http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/talkingpoint/discuss/showthread.php?t=2104
    when he was talking about using a discreet card for avoiding embarassing situations. I'm not sure how shopping is done in the UK but if its done the same way as in Australia, it would have been obvious to the shop assistant that no attempts to be sneaky about 'stealing' were being made so if a card like the one mentioned in my post was used, it could help avoid embarassing situations. Your Dad could even add that he has the blind eye.
    Perhaps he doesn't want to advertise the fact however...
    Just a suggestion, I hope you find one here that suits your situation.
     
  6. Sandy

    Sandy Registered User

    Mar 23, 2005
    6,847
    Hi Mandy,

    Nat made an excellent post on this not too long ago. Her family made a little card that could be shown to staff at shops, etc. as needed:

    http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/talkingpoint/discuss/showthread.php?t=2104

    Several books by care givers have recommended this type of approach. The text may something like "I have a memory problem, please ..." - obviously it depends on who is carrying the card.

    Alzheimer's Scotland has a card in PDF format that you can download from their web site and print out:

    http://www.alzscot.org/pages/info/helpcard.htm


    Alzheimer's Austrailia has examples of both on their web site (unfortunately no downloadable version):

    http://www.alzheimers.org.au/content.cfm?infopageid=980

    I think that the wording on the companion card is quite good: My companion has an illness which causes memory loss and confusion. Please understand any unusual behaviour

    I can't find any similar type of card on the Alzheimer's Society web site. Perhaps that would be a good concept for them to follow up. It provides a useful service to people with dementia and their carers, as well as raising awareness.

    Take care,

    Sandy
     
  7. mandyp

    mandyp Registered User

    Oct 20, 2004
    150
    Glasgow
    Thank you for all your suggestions. The card is a really good idea, I'm not sure Mum would carry one, not sure that she'd remember to produce it. Kind of hard to know if she's actually feeling confused or just muddling along so for her to be relied upon to show it may not be ideal. Also, there are less pleasant people out there who may, sadly, take advantage of the situation.

    I will suggest to Dad that he has one.

    Going round local shops is difficult as we live near a very large shopping centre so I imagine it would be hard to get all staff to be aware of her.

    I'm hopeful that shops would be sympathetic, I also think that Mum handing the shopping to Dad would have been a blatent thing rather than an attempt to cover up what she was doing, which should help. I would suggest getting her to pack the bags and he does the other bit, but he used to do that and she stuck everything in the wrong place, unfortunately eggs were a casaulty. It's a shame, she tries to help.

    These things only serve to remind me of the 'things' that have to come, have to say this seems to be a fairly minor incident but it had me in tears. It's just so difficult to have to pull yourself together, but I can't stand the thought of my fantastic Mum being the butt of jokes in the canteen. I hate that she could do something so silly and potentially find herself in serious trouble over nothing.

    All your ideas and thoughts are a great comfort.

    Thank you.
     
  8. Norman

    Norman Registered User

    Oct 9, 2003
    4,348
    Birmingham Hades
    I had several embarrassing moments in the Super market.
    Not only did Peg put our stuff in the bag before it was scanned,but othr peoples.
    We do not set foot in a Supermarket any longer,I order on the internet and pay £3.99 delivery charge at the beginning of the week,worth every penny to me.
    The charge is more later in the week.
    Norman
     
  9. connie

    connie Registered User

    Mar 7, 2004
    9,519
    Frinton-on-Sea
    Going back to the card idea, I know the Picks desease Society produces one for their patients. It is a small laminated card, just like a credit card, with the society name on one side and an explanation of condition on the other. I think it is an excellent idea, what do others think.

    Living in a small place I have always been very open with shopkeepers, librarians, anyone who came into regular contact with Lionel.........He doesn't go out now on his own, but it was helpful at the time. Connie
     
  10. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    Hi Norman

    for the last 6 months I had Jan at our house, I could never go shopping, so Tesco's Internet delivery service proved a great boon.
     
  11. Bets

    Bets Registered User

    Aug 11, 2005
    100
    South-East London, UK
    My shopping problem is rather different. My husband insists on coming shopping with me and I have come to dread it. Hardly a visit to the supermarket goes by without him being rude and aggressive to some unsuspecting customer, be they elderly, woman or child. If someone is in his way, instead of asking them politely to move, he says "Excuse me!" very rudely and physically pushes them or their trolley out of the way. Understandably, this behaviour sometimes results in unpleasant responses, but he usually doesn't hear (and if he does, doesn't care). I then either pretend I haven't noticed what has happened or apologise to the person and explain that he has dementia, which then usually evinces much understanding and sympathy from the other person. Either way, I feel humiliated and upset, while he is blithely unconcerned. Clearly the time is coming when I may have to go the delivery route.

    The above prompted by another unpleasant incident today, which left me really upset. Glad to have got it off my chest.

    Bets
     
  12. Nutty Nan

    Nutty Nan Registered User

    Nov 2, 2003
    787
    Buckinghamshire
    same boat / different seat ...

    My husband has developed cleptomania. He does not shoplift, but wherever he is, he picks things up, puts them in his pocket, and regards them as treasure - no amount of reasoning would make him part with his trophies, be they a pen, a coin, a bit of silver foil, a can pull, a bottle lid, or my car keys.
    This is not usually a big problem at home (I have learnt my lesson and do not leave anything that I might need agin within view). Even our friends have forgiven him for taking a sliver teaspoon home after a lovely lunch!
    However, the shop situation is rather more tricky. His main attraction are things that are shiny and/or blue. It is like an Aladdin's cave, and I am grateful that I can avoid isles with children's toys, stationery with holographic designs, hairclips etc. It is bad enough making sure he doesn't spot/grab a jar of honey with a shiny golden lid or a small gift set with silver decorations, and magic it away into his pocket. I give him empty shopping bags to carry, or an envelope, and I ask him to push the trolley for me, but I am more stressed than I ever was when our children were little, and it would still never surprise me to feel the heavy weight of a hand on my shoulder!
    I do carry little cards with me ('My husband suffers from Alzheimers disease. Please excuse any inappropriate conversation or behaviour. Thank you"), but I am not convinced that they would serve as a defense.
    I also carry a statement from our GP, confirming that my husband suffers from AD, in case there is ever a serious issue where it might be assumed that we use this statement as an excuse.
    One of the big stresses as a carer is the constant feeling of being totally responsible for everything.......
     
  13. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    824
    I remember my Mum and Dad's last few visits to a supermarket together being quite fraught. Dad would become very agitated, thinking he was constantly in everyone's way.
     
  14. angela.robinson

    angela.robinson Registered User

    Dec 27, 2004
    520
    HI NUTTY NAN ,SORRY THINGS HAVE GONE DOWNHILL ,AS TO THE SHOPPING ,IT BECAME A NIGHTMARE FOR ME ,AT LEAST 2 YR AGO ,AND THAT WAS JUST PHISICALY GUIDING JIM ROUND THE ISLES, I COULD NOT LET GO OF HIM FOR A MINUIT AS HE WOULD LOSE BALANCE OR BECOME DISORIENTATED,THEN HE WOULD LOSE HIS TEMPER AND INSIST ON GOING HOME .I DID NOT HAVE THE ADDED PROBLEMS YOU HAVE ,OF HIM PICKING THINGS UP ,iF YOU ARE AS STRESSED AS I USE TO GET ,IS IT NOT POSSIBLE TO STOP TAKING HIM WITH YOU NOW ,?NOT ALWAYS EASY I KNOW ,AT FIRST I SHOPPED WHILE CROSSROADS WAS WITH HIM ,THEN WHEN HE WOULD NO LONGER TOLERATED ANYONE ELSE STAYING WITH HIM ,I JUST GAVE UP SHOPPING AND HAD TO RELY ON FAMILY TO BRING THE SHOPPING FOR ME ,I HATED HAVING NO FREEDOM TO SHOP ,AND I WAS JUST DEBATING ON INTERNET SHOPPING ,IT IS DECIDING WHAT IS THE LESS STRESSFULL,THEN OF COURSE NATURE TOOK ITS COURSE ,AND I AM FREE TO SHOP TILL I DROP ,BUT THERE IS NO ENJOYMENT IN IT NOW .I HOPE YOU FIND A SALUTION .ANGELA
     
  15. Nutty Nan

    Nutty Nan Registered User

    Nov 2, 2003
    787
    Buckinghamshire
    Thanks Angela: I think my solution is to keep going (together) as long as possible, hoping that being aware of the situation and vigilant (and in possession of the magic cards) will keep us out of trouble.
    It would be easier, quicker and much less stressful to go by myself, but I feel that my husband deserves a change of scenery as often as possible, and a busy, colourful and warm shop is more enjoyable for him than a walk along a chilly country lane (which we used to enjoy!).
    As you so rightly say: the day will probably come when I will be free to shop by myself, and there won't be any joy in it at all!
     
  16. angela.robinson

    angela.robinson Registered User

    Dec 27, 2004
    520
    hi nan. the differance then is that your man is enjoying the shopping trips ,where JIM use to hate it ,you will know when the time comes ,that you will have to stop ,untill then GOOD LUCK ,STAY STRONG .ANGELA
     
  17. freefairy

    freefairy Registered User

    Nov 2, 2004
    31
    Colchester
    Hello all

    It's been a while since my mum and dad have gone shopping, i do it all for them now, but i do remember the last few times we took dad shopping.

    When he started to throw things out of the trolly and shouting at everyone to show his distaste for shopping we had to call it a day, he never really did like shopping at the best of times but with all inhibitions going/gone he really let everyone know how he really felt.

    Dad would walk arround Tescos holding onto the trolly, then mum or i used to guide it to where it needed to go, often dad would put all the things he liked the look of into the trolly and mum would find them at the checkout, at the checkout dad would place all the items from the trolly onto the conveyor belt, i can't recall him ever trying to place them straight into the bags.

    Dad would try to place the bags into the trolly then from the trolly to the back of the car, this took him ages to do but we let him try with the lighter items, he also used to take the trolly back to the trolly park to help him feel useful and needed.

    We used to go shopping on the same day each week and roughly the same time, i used to have a discreet word with members of staff about my dads AD and mums sight, this did help with staff getting to know us and they would come to help without asking. This was a great relief for me as mum is partially sighted with only 12% vision.

    I do believe if we had had the ID card stating dads illness it would have been a lot less stress all round.

    Keeping to regular shopping days and times may help, i know it did for us in the earlier days, hope this helps.

    Sheryl
     
  18. mandyp

    mandyp Registered User

    Oct 20, 2004
    150
    Glasgow
    Well, this seems to be a major problem for a lot of you! It seems that online asda shopping may be the best idea!

    Spoke to Dad this weekend and it seems that my worries about Mum were unfounded.....water off a ducks back he said. It seems that she wasn't in the slightest bit bothered by her behaviour! He, on the other hand, was highly embarrassed. He did also accept that this is probably minor in terms of what is aroung the corner.

    I suggested the card idea but he's not keen. He feels that in some way this is humiliating Mum. I think that Dad is still trying to allow Mum to be as 'normal' as possible. He said he would rather avoid people talking down to her for as long as he can. I'm saddened by this and wish he'd face up to it, but at the same time I can understand where he's coming from. She does get annoyed when we sneak off to talk about her and this gets her very agigitated.

    Dad is exhausted, I can't stop worrying and I know that it's not going to get any better. How do any of you see light at the end of the tunnel. I feel like I should be enjoying life, my family, norma things.....I can't with the constant feeling/knowing that this is happening to Mum. Everything else is not important, previously I worried about poverty, politics, state of the world, the environment etc... Well, when those were my worries, I never knew what worrying was...I do now:(

    This is pain, a horrible throbbing pain that nothing can ease. I want desperately to do something, but can't.

    Sorry, on a bit of a downer, in spite of having a very upbeat Mum over this weekend.
     
  19. daughter

    daughter Registered User

    Mar 16, 2005
    824
    Hi Mandy,

    I can understand your feelings about wanting to do something, but can't. So far, the worst time for me was watching my parents going through the early stages - Dad with AD and Mum struggling as his carer. Everyone knowing there's a problem, but no one wanting to take the bull by the horns and start asking for outside help. Eventually Mum was persuaded to let Dad go to Day Care and she also attended a Carer's group, but it took quite a lot of encouragement and time. I also had the feeling that I didn't really want to intrude in their lives, and when Dad behaved ok it was as if we could forget about it all, until the next episode.

    If you feel that your Dad is exhausted, and he's beginning to accept there's more 'around the corner', perhaps it may be time to look into some help for him and your Mum? This, in turn, may bring you some peace of mind.

    I'm afraid there is no real light at the end of the tunnel as far as AD goes, but for my family, at the moment, the train is now a bit more securely on the tracks and we've got drivers and guards to help it along.

    Thinking of you,
     

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