This sound trivial but....


Registered User
Sep 13, 2014
My OH with moderate Alzheimer’s is still fully mobile, indoors at least, and he fidgets. He continually fiddles about. Loads the dishwasher with dirty cups etc when it’s actually clean and waiting to be unloaded. Or unloading it when the stuff is dirty. And puts stuff away in random places. I put a couple of damp fabric table mats on the radiator to dry this afternoon and found them still damp on the table (damp wood table now). He will lay out plates for breakfast before we’ve even finished dinner and has the bedside lights on and glasses of water by the bed by 7pm. He moves EVERYTHING! I bought a pack of pens on Friday but they have vanished. Anything left on the kitchen worktop e.g something I’ve left there to remind me to take it out with me tomorrow - will have moved. Either just pushed to the back or put in the window ledge. If I put something in the waste basket (he empties these at least once a day) that is not obvious rubbish, like a dead biro, it will be extracted and left in the kitchen.

He’s actually sitting reading the paper as I write this but I know he will be up and furkling about again any minute and I will hear him opening and closing drawers. It does sound like a trivial thing. I can hear you saying you wish yours would at least try and “help” by doing the dishwasher or emptying the waste paper baskets! But it’s exhausting, frustrating having to find things or sort out the muddles he has left and it’s driving me mad!

Janey B

Registered User
Aug 15, 2019
Trivial No No No my OH is just the same. Dirty pots put in cupboards, every light switched on throughout the house. Nothing put back in its usual place which results in lots of time spent searching for things. Sometimes they never turn up!
Drawers and cupboards left open, furniture moved !! the house is like a disaster zone. I spend half my time putting things back in order. Hopefully it’s just a stage and will pass soon No suggestions sorry just sharing your frustration

Splashing About

Registered User
Oct 20, 2019
My fathers house became like a minimalist art house....everything removed, locked down, hidden, shut away....


Registered User
Mar 1, 2013
West Hertfordshire
Would he sit and sort things, if you found things for him to sort?

Thinking icecream container of nuts & Bolts and bits that need sorting/screwing together?


Registered User
Sep 13, 2014
Glad it’s not just me! I do hope it’s a phase.

Good idea Jessbow. I have tried giving him tasks like that but he gets distracted and wanders off leaving me something else to put away.


Registered User
Apr 4, 2018
My OH would finish drinking out of a glass or a cup, and put it back in the cupboard if I didn’t take it off him. He has been washing the dishes ( I say wash!) with the spray kitchen surface cleaner. Today he put my foil wrapped sponge cake in the fridge. I don’t give him jobs to do now, as it’s causes him anxiety, and it’s easier to do it myself.


Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
Dad fiddled a lot a couple of years ago, moving things, rearranging furniture, tidying up and especially moving pictures around which involved banging nails in the walls, lots of them.

He sits in his chair all day now but he has some coins that he likes to arrange along with his collection of combs.

Neither situation is good but it is easier now.


Registered User
Nov 16, 2016
Moreton, Wirral. UK.
My OH is certainly more fidgety than even a month or so ago but the most repetitive issue is washing the bedding and cushion covers and afterwards using washing machine cleaner to ensure the machine isnt dirty. All this seems to fit in with her original self in that she has always been what we call house proud with a place for everything and everything in its place. Just hope it doesn’t develop to such a level as your OH!


Registered User
Dec 4, 2011
Pratteln Switzerland
I rememeber that period. My cupboards started smelling horrible as I would not discover all the dirty dishes which were put away.
We still have a bit of this but nothing like 10 years ago. He used to hoard away coffee capsules. No big deal, but I found it hugely annoying.....trying to make sense of the irrationality of it all.

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
I don`t think anything sounds trivial in relation to obsessive or anxiety fuelled behaviours @Olliebeak.

My husband was obsessive about his shoes. They were kept in their boxes in the wardrobe but of course he couldn`t see them or find the right ones when they were hidden away. He used to line them up, unboxed, by the side of his bed and spend hours rearranging them in order.

It worried me because there is little room by his side of the bed and just another obstacle where he could trip or fall but if I put them away they were immediately taken out again.

It`s really difficult to know how to deal with these behaviours and those of you experiencing hygienic kitchen related problems have my sympathy.


Registered User
Apr 2, 2016
Basingstoke, Hampshire
I wish I could keep my husband out of the kitchen. He has a habit of putting dirty crockery on the draining board with the clean crockery. I have to check everything before putting away. He puts things in the bin that shouldn't and takes things out of the bin and they can be found anywhere.
He also opens the blinds at various times in the evening after I have closed them. He opens the inner front door every few minutes just looking to see if we have any post. But some days he is constantly looking.
He is constantly arranging coasters on the coffee table. He just seems to move them about as if trying to line them up. That I don't mind as it keeps him occupied for a while.


Registered User
Jul 12, 2018
West Midlands
Last year my OH became so obsessive about hiding and hoarding that I had locks put on 2 rooms. He went for shiny things and small containers mostly, so that included jewellery, my creams and lotions, pens, scissors... so I removed these items and locked them away. The trouble is he then moved onto purses, bags, sewing materials and more. So now I still can't find anything as it's all stuffed away in some available drawer or cupboard in the locked room!


Registered User
Jan 9, 2017
Nothing trivial about this or anything else. Nothing is more exhausting than expecting to find things in the place you left them and since they have vanished you begin a desperate search when time is limited. My husband has discovered the freezer, he looks in it takes out what looks good to eat, unwraps it and when he discovers it is frozen leaves it to defrost. He forgets about it, leaves it lying around. It eventually has to be thrown out.

White Rose

Registered User
Nov 4, 2018
Agree with all, not trivial, very, very frustrating but also so sad for them that they have to engage in these behaviours. It's the Christmas decorations with mine at the moment, I wrapped them nicely and put them in boxes to put away and then I find him merrily unwrapping them and laying them out on the sideboard - my fault of course for not taking the boxes and hiding them away upstairs!


New member
Jan 20, 2020
My mum went through a phase of rearranging all her CDs a few years ago. We’d come home to find all her CD cases opened and emptied and scattered throughout the living room. My poor dad, especially, would have to spend ages tidying up. This went on practically each day for a few months. Frustrating! But when one phase ends a new one begins, and that can be more frustrating than the last. So you have to try not to stress too much...easier said than done though!


Registered User
May 1, 2019
Trivial???? - No way Jose!!!! - It drives you maddddddd. My wife moves EVERYTHING, You learn after a while to hide things yourself, so that they don't disappear. We don't have any keys left in anything, all of my personal stuff hidden away out of "The manic mover's" touch. I spend at least an hour every evening (when she has eventually succumb to sleep) putting the house "back together". Another thing is towels, and silver foil, folded up and stuffed everywhere - Also shoes and slippers - all over the place - always worn as odd pairs. Freezer - lid wide open and food left on the side. Vegetable bucket emptied into the washing machine!
When this all first started , it really annoyed me, then you sort of adapt to it and have to accept it. They don't mean any harm and in Dementia world they are making things safe - The whole world around them is a really scary place and when we are annoyed because we can't find something, we forget just how scary things are for them.
Is it a phase ? - I don't know, its been going on now in this house for a couple of years. You are not alone - and I empathise with your frustrations - You hopefully will adapt - we have to as carers, otherwise we may crumble.
Best to grumble on here rather than crumble!


Registered User
Apr 2, 2016
Basingstoke, Hampshire
My husband only stops moving things when he's asleep. I must admit I find it frustrating when he is constantly moving things about while he's standing talking to me. His hands just don't keep still. A mat on the table can be moved about as if it has to have a particular place to be. But it isn't that, it's just a case of it having to be on the move all the time.

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