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Tough day!

lensgirl

Registered User
Jan 14, 2020
32
Today has been a hard day with my nan. She had her ACE test last month which came back as 52/100 and the nurse recommended nan stops driving. I got her to fill in the voluntary forms, on the basis that she might get it back after her consultant appointment. This has caused 6 weeks of "I'm going to lie to get my license back" etc.

Yesterday nan recieved the letter from the memory nurse detailing what the results of the visit last month was.

This morning we had a bit of a set to as she was telling me that if she doesnt get her car back there is no point in living.

I have been home an hour (we are staying with her while we complete on our new house) and I have been pretty much called a liar the entire time. She did not eat the last of the bread last night, we did. She did not have points on her license last year for speeding. She is not having just a CT scan but is having 2 procedures, but couldn't show me on her letter where it said that. The scan will take 20 minutes not the 15 I said. She absolutely does not have dementia. She did not give the nurse mine and my sisters number when she visited. She is going to "make someone let her have her car back".

Luckily she has signed the LPA forms because I absolutely know she does not remember doing it. She doesnt remember signing the forms for her license and the other week she didnt even recognise her own writing.

I know I shouldnt take any of it personally and she is worried about tomorrow, but today I'm struggling with it a little
 

Big Yellow Taxi

New member
Jan 6, 2018
6
I get your post totally. You are not alone in how you feel believe me. It’s so hard when you are doing everything to support, for the right reasons, but the feedback is that you are doing quite the opposite. My mum has a solid support network but makes us all feel like we’re failing her and trying to finish her off. Your nan sounds as fiesty as my mum! These are the traits that make us so proud of her but equally absolutely destroy our emotions. You are doing amazing. Don’t forget that. It’s not a sprint, it’s the hardest marathon. You are right though, tomorrow is another day. Sleep well x
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
5,446
N Ireland
Loss of the ability to drive causes many issues. I'm glad that my wife no longer mentions it.

It's a requirement to tell the DVLA and the Insurers about a diagnosis on understandable safety grounds.

In case you haven't seen it already I've put a link to the Society Factsheet about the issue below. Just click the 2nd line if you want to read it.
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
710
Hi @lensgirl, the driving issue is very common, although that doesn't make it any easier to deal with. There always tends to be someone in the firing line for the decision - I just told Mum that the GP had revoked her licence, she said 'the swine' but then seemed to accept it. There was no way she could drive a vehicle she would have been a danger to herself and other road users and pedestrians and it would only end in one way - so you have done the right thing. I guess your Nan has probably had quite a shock with the results (even though she may have forgotten now, it may well have triggered a reaction) - I think it's probably best to just agree and say that she is right (apart from the driving issue!) to help keep the peace and reduce her agitation levels - easier said than done, I do appreciate that. I hope today is a better day for you. Stay strong.
 

Bunpoots

Volunteer Host
Apr 1, 2016
4,362
Nottinghamshire
My dad thought he was fine. Luckily he was happy to be driven but he had his own private chauffeur (me). I found following this as much as possible helped with other issues - it’s not always easy to go along with their version of reality but it helps keep things calm if you can.

 

lensgirl

Registered User
Jan 14, 2020
32
Thank you all for your replies, im very lucky that I also have a very calm husband who just seems to be taking it all in his stride (I feel guilty that he is also having to deal with it, as the moving house was down to me). Yesterday went well and she was in and out of the CT scan as quickly as we had hoped. Thankfully she didn't try to get any of the poor nurses to give her her license back!

It would be so much easier to just let her have it back, but I would never forgive myself if something happened while she was out so as soon as I know who the consultant is that will be giving her (hopefully) a diagnosis, I am going to write to him and just outline mine and my sisters concerns. If we express them ourselves she will never forgive us, so I am going to have to use the medical team as my scapegoat!
 

DesperateofDevon

Registered User
Jul 7, 2019
2,660
Today has been a hard day with my nan. She had her ACE test last month which came back as 52/100 and the nurse recommended nan stops driving. I got her to fill in the voluntary forms, on the basis that she might get it back after her consultant appointment. This has caused 6 weeks of "I'm going to lie to get my license back" etc.

Yesterday nan recieved the letter from the memory nurse detailing what the results of the visit last month was.

This morning we had a bit of a set to as she was telling me that if she doesnt get her car back there is no point in living.

I have been home an hour (we are staying with her while we complete on our new house) and I have been pretty much called a liar the entire time. She did not eat the last of the bread last night, we did. She did not have points on her license last year for speeding. She is not having just a CT scan but is having 2 procedures, but couldn't show me on her letter where it said that. The scan will take 20 minutes not the 15 I said. She absolutely does not have dementia. She did not give the nurse mine and my sisters number when she visited. She is going to "make someone let her have her car back".

Luckily she has signed the LPA forms because I absolutely know she does not remember doing it. She doesnt remember signing the forms for her license and the other week she didnt even recognise her own writing.

I know I shouldnt take any of it personally and she is worried about tomorrow, but today I'm struggling with it a little
No wonder you are struggling
Your Nan is in the denial phase, so just step back a little. Hard I know but no car keys no driving!
only recently now Aged Mother is on Memantine that these behaviour patterns have levelled off( basically I don’t have to dodge her hitting out or kicking) but the ability to distress through words is still there!
it could be the type of dementia your NaN has exaggerates her choice of language.
But it can be the only way to express the frustration of losing your independence!
As for being called a liar , just walk away Male a cuppa & breathe deeply & have a vent on here!
xx
 

lensgirl

Registered User
Jan 14, 2020
32
So Thursday, friday and Saturday were good days but today has been another tough one and I'm starting to wonder if I am the problem! I was supposed to take her to see her brother (who has diagnosed alzheimer's), which she loves doing but this morning she announced she wasnt going because she didnt want to leave my husband who wasnt very well. He has a cold and has spent the day sleeping it off, so not at deaths door or anything! I know how much she wants to see her brother, so I tried convincing her that he was fine to be left but she wasnt having any of it, which culminated in "you cant make me". I said fine and that I was taking the dogs out. I needed to get out, so i took the dogs off in the car and we went for a walk in the woods. During that walk i get a text asking me to come home because the neighbour was asking if we could move our other car as he wanted his caravan out of the drive and was worried he might hit it. Obviously no problem, but i called her and said that i was 45 minutes away so couldn't, but she was welcome to give him my keys to move it himself.
I get back and she opens the front door without a word and goes back to the living room. I am cleaning the mud off the dogs and get a text asking me to bring the dogs back (obviously delayed from when she said that). I went into the living room and asked if all was ok, only to be accused of lying and that you "dont take the dogs for a walk in the car". I tried to explain to her and even showed her the muddy towel, but she kept saying that she thought the car had been stolen and I was taking the dogs to "the dog place " (I think she thought I was either having them put down or sent away). I really dont know if I am doing something wrong. I am trying hard not to argue with her, or correct her when she is wrong but I guess I shouldnt even try and get her to do the things she really wants to do. I have been the one to suggest she goes and sees her brother, but since I have been here (1st January) she has only gone once. He has been ill for a couple of weekends during that time, but I dont think I am going to suggest taking her anymore.
3 weeks time we go on holiday for a week, so I think it will do us all good. I have no idea what situation I will come back to, but I'm sure it will be that she hasn't gone out and has been stuck in (she has a scooter so absolutely no reason to be). And it will start the whole driving license thing off again (not that it actually stops!)
Apologies for the ramble!!
 

DesperateofDevon

Registered User
Jul 7, 2019
2,660
So Thursday, friday and Saturday were good days but today has been another tough one and I'm starting to wonder if I am the problem! I was supposed to take her to see her brother (who has diagnosed alzheimer's), which she loves doing but this morning she announced she wasnt going because she didnt want to leave my husband who wasnt very well. He has a cold and has spent the day sleeping it off, so not at deaths door or anything! I know how much she wants to see her brother, so I tried convincing her that he was fine to be left but she wasnt having any of it, which culminated in "you cant make me". I said fine and that I was taking the dogs out. I needed to get out, so i took the dogs off in the car and we went for a walk in the woods. During that walk i get a text asking me to come home because the neighbour was asking if we could move our other car as he wanted his caravan out of the drive and was worried he might hit it. Obviously no problem, but i called her and said that i was 45 minutes away so couldn't, but she was welcome to give him my keys to move it himself.
I get back and she opens the front door without a word and goes back to the living room. I am cleaning the mud off the dogs and get a text asking me to bring the dogs back (obviously delayed from when she said that). I went into the living room and asked if all was ok, only to be accused of lying and that you "dont take the dogs for a walk in the car". I tried to explain to her and even showed her the muddy towel, but she kept saying that she thought the car had been stolen and I was taking the dogs to "the dog place " (I think she thought I was either having them put down or sent away). I really dont know if I am doing something wrong. I am trying hard not to argue with her, or correct her when she is wrong but I guess I shouldnt even try and get her to do the things she really wants to do. I have been the one to suggest she goes and sees her brother, but since I have been here (1st January) she has only gone once. He has been ill for a couple of weekends during that time, but I dont think I am going to suggest taking her anymore.
3 weeks time we go on holiday for a week, so I think it will do us all good. I have no idea what situation I will come back to, but I'm sure it will be that she hasn't gone out and has been stuck in (she has a scooter so absolutely no reason to be). And it will start the whole driving license thing off again (not that it actually stops!)
Apologies for the ramble!!
Rant away! Is she ok to be left alone ? Perhaps this is the perfect opportunity to let SS know it’s ball in their court time?
 

lensgirl

Registered User
Jan 14, 2020
32
Thanks! at the moment she is not diagnosed, so I don't think anything can be done. I'm not sure how long we will have to wait for the follow up to her scan. In some ways I hope not too long, but in other ways I hope its in about 6-8 weeks and after we have moved out. I have a difficult relationship with my mental health and suffered with work related stress for over 12 years before I finally got out last year, and I can feel the same old feelings coming back (stressed, being trapped in a situation I cant get out of, feeling not good enough etc) and I'm not sure how she is going to react to a permanent license removal as well as an actual diagnosis. Last night was my first crying in the middle of the night moment so far and I hate being this person again. We have a holiday in just under 3 weeks which is going to be a god send, but I can already feel the trepidation of what I am going to come back to!
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,196
South coast
Im afraid that your mums reactions are all par for the course with dementia. It is absolutely 100% not your fault. She is upset because of being told not to drive, but cannot remember this (dont remind her) and is lashing out at you.
 

DesperateofDevon

Registered User
Jul 7, 2019
2,660
Wise advice by @canary
Dementias alternative reality makes life hard, learning to adapt to the fluctuations takes time & a lot of teeth grinding in my case!
x
 

lensgirl

Registered User
Jan 14, 2020
32
thank you. I have realised that her memories are just as real as mine, and that arguing against something that she absolutely believes is true is pointless. we had an issue last week as she needs her toilet replaced and we have also opted to change the sink as the current ones are that lovely 80's green so just changing the toilet would look odd. obviously we spoke with her first about it, but she is now adamant that she did not agree to this. I think I'm going to get her to write things down when she agrees to them, although she didn't recognise her own writing a few weeks ago so I'm still not sure if that will work. I am dreading the LPA letter that will arrive saying she has signed it, as I'm fully expecting her to deny this too and really really hope they don't reject it and we have to do it all again. Although at the moment I don't want to be dealing with it all and feel like we should just let the doctors and/or solicitors deal with her affairs as they will be far more hard nosed about it!
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,196
South coast
I have realised that her memories are just as real as mine, and that arguing against something that she absolutely believes is true is pointless.
Yes, absolutely. These "false memories" are the subconscious brain filling in the gaps in her memory - its called confabulation - and these false memories seem just like the real thing to her.
I think I'm going to get her to write things down when she agrees to them,
I tried this with mum, but she became convinced that i was faking her handwriting......
I am dreading the LPA letter that will arrive saying she has signed it, as I'm fully expecting her to deny this too
If that happens, remove it out of her hand and put on the performance of a lifetime - oh my...... how can this have happened?.......... leave it with me.......... Ill get it sorted. Then quietly file away the letter and say nothing more about it. She will probably forget, but if she does remember, well then you have sorted it, havent you? ;)
 

EpgLondon

New member
Feb 24, 2020
3
thank you. I have realised that her memories are just as real as mine, and that arguing against something that she absolutely believes is true is pointless. we had an issue last week as she needs her toilet replaced and we have also opted to change the sink as the current ones are that lovely 80's green so just changing the toilet would look odd. obviously we spoke with her first about it, but she is now adamant that she did not agree to this. I think I'm going to get her to write things down when she agrees to them, although she didn't recognise her own writing a few weeks ago so I'm still not sure if that will work. I am dreading the LPA letter that will arrive saying she has signed it, as I'm fully expecting her to deny this too and really really hope they don't reject it and we have to do it all again. Although at the moment I don't want to be dealing with it all and feel like we should just let the doctors and/or solicitors deal with her affairs as they will be far more hard nosed about it!
Hard as it is, try to keep in mind that you are trying to do the right thing. That is why you put the LPA in place to protect her and help when the time comes. There will be good and bad days. When I have bad conversations (hard to avoid) I think of it as the Alzheimer's talking and not my Mum.
 

DesperateofDevon

Registered User
Jul 7, 2019
2,660
it's so difficult week in week out dealing with the same issues
but slowly you are making progress!
i look back to a year ago & cant believe how far we have come & what a struggle the process was!
i never want to go through that again!
i have visibly aged over the past year! my get up & go has got up & emigrated
 

lensgirl

Registered User
Jan 14, 2020
32
It is really hard, and sometimes what makes it harder is not actually knowing what I am coming home to. Last week she was actually a lot better than not, but I still dread in case something has happened. I am now concerned about her money. She had a new toilet and sink fitted in her bathroom on Friday and we paid online for the works and then nan gave us the money back on Saturday. This morning she told my husband she needed to go to the bank to draw out money to pay him for the bathroom. She doesn't remember doing it, and even checked with me to make sure she has. Then she has decided to hide some shampoo and conditioner that I bought for her! I don't know why she needs to hide it but there we go!!
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
710
This morning she told my husband she needed to go to the bank to draw out money to pay him for the bathroom. She doesn't remember doing it, and even checked with me to make sure she has.
Hi @lensgirl, it does sound as though your Nan is quite vulnerable with her finances. I had POA and took over managing my Mum's when she had a period of illness and continued thereafter knowing she was vulnerable. It sounds as though your Nan needs some support now with her finances.

what makes it harder is not actually knowing what I am coming home to.
That certainly is the perennial problem @lensgirl, there is no longer any certainty.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,196
South coast
The hiding is so typical of dementia.
Mum was convinced that things were being stolen, so she would hide things "so they wouldnt find them", but she forgot she had hidden them, couldnt find them and was convinced they had been stolen............
 

AshestoAshes

Registered User
Aug 10, 2019
14
It's definitely not you, and as people have said it's par for the course. My dad would be completely sure that things had happened which I knew had not. He was also convinced he was still fine to drive and that I was 'worrying too much about it', although he promised me he wouldn't drive. In the end I took the car keys, both sets, out of the house altogether so he couldn't get in and drive off, in case he forgot his promise.