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Selfish and Faking


New member
Jul 10, 2019
My Fatherinlaw was diagnosed with Alzheimer's 3 years ago. His wife, who is primary care giver, was always spoiled and never had to work or do much other than cook and clean the house once in a while. She made a grocery list, he did the shopping because she didn't like to do it. She has always lied, manipulated, and done things that caused problems and he had always taken care of it. Now he's sick. And she has had to do what most people would consider "normal" tasks and she refuses. She has always pretended being stupid to get out of things and admitted it. It made her sons and husband "feel more like men when she did that and they had to do things for her" she said. Right now all she has to do is fix him meals, when she fixes her own, and stay home with him until someone is there for her to leave. We have moved in right next door to her to be available. We knew this would be difficult for her. After reading posts here, I am more convinced she is faking. We have seen her turn her so called dementia on and off like a light switch. She admits to lying to get her way. There is a reason behind it. She will say I did that because i wanted this.... She has lied to her doctor to get pills for her oldest son. And he has now had serious medical issues. When he went in the hospital, she stopped picking up the prescription. She didn't need it anymore since she was getting it for him. We now handle her medication. Recently when he visitied he had a knee problem, I had finaly gotten my husband to agree to her going to the doctor for a physical. We are now in the realm of abuse and neglect concerning my fatherinlaw. When my brotherinlaw showed up with a knee problem using a cane, we were suprised when we found out the doctor had called in a prescription for medication for HER knee. The day she went to that appointment she came home and was doing yard work. There was no knee problem. She also lied about having any prescriptions called in. We picked it up we were taking it to her and then I find out she skipped taking it for 2 days. I called the docs office again..and he after chatting with him about her "cognitive" issues..and him doing a physical. He is not seeing a problem. However, she has been to the doctor before with other people and has put on a show. She called 28 times in one month wanting medication (I suspect for her son) and the doctor wouldn't give it to her. Now we finally have a referral for a neurologist to do some tests. I suspect these tests will come back normal. The doctor isn't seeing anything, we are seeing what we believe to be faking and lying which has always been her personality, it is just extreme now..she often tries to copy my fatherinlaw. (we had nurses scheduled to come in and help her and she cancelled them..they weren't for her.to do housework and be there for at least 16 hours a day every day so she could be off running the roads and hanging out with friends so she got mad) I am scared for the safety and health of my fatherinlaw and even a case worker said she is the obstacle standing in the way of him being taken care of. It is however my husbands mother, but even I am not capable of being objective anymore. I got her the appt. with her physician and talked to him to get her the help if she needs it so if we need to help her we can. But my main concern is my fatherinlaw. Other family members are angry with her and have stopped coming to visit because of her. we have the support of family and they will come see him if she is not home. Any suggestions on what to do? I am tired, scared for my fatherinlaw, and hoping the new doc appt. will help. But I don't know what to do.


Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
High Peak
Sorry to hear about this difficult situation. From what I understand, you suspect your MIL has undiagnosed dementia but due to her 'difficult' nature, it's hard to be sure and she isn't cooperating. Is that right?

Unfortunately, dementia often seems to increase a person's worst personailty traits. My mum has always been selfish and difficult and in the early (undiagnosed) stages she managed to upset everyone around her.She's always thought herself better than everyone else but started telling people (including strangers!) exactly what she thought of them. She also became adept at covering up all the mistakes she was making and problems she was having or would blame others.

I don't have much in the way of suggestions other than to keep at it and make sure she gets to the doctor. Having said that, when all this was happening my mother would have been able to convince any doctor she was fine because she would have lied through her teeth and did a brilliant 'hostess mode' when it suited her.

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