1. georgina66

    georgina66 Registered User

    Mar 30, 2007
    London Uk
    hello, This is my first time on this forum. my mum was diagnosed last year with Az. She is 83. in the last few months she has got alot worse. This moment in time, i feel like i am about to crack up. I cannot stop the constant calling asking me when she is going home. she has lived in her house for 40 years and the last 4 years by herself after I left home. it now has got to the point that she thinks she is somewhere else and is calling me all the time to ask me to take her home. Today it has been 18 calls on my mobile at work. The more i tell her she is at home, the more she doesnt understand me. When i ask her where she is, she says she is at home in london and i get her to explain the house, which she does and then in the next breath she says 'but when are we going home'. It is the same conversation everyday, over and over.

    When i tell her that her memory problems are playing tricks on her or she must of had a 'bad dream' she accuses me of planning things behind her back and selling the house (I have not).
    It has now come to a point where i dont answer my phone (and i hate having to do that). i spend most of the weekdays with her - staying with her at nightime for company and as soon as i go back to my flat for a break i get the constant calls. I feel so guilty, sometimes I am so horrible to her, i shout at her and i hate myself for it. I feel so depressed, guilty and i cry alot.

    I cant find any local support groups. my friends are supportive but just dont understand and i feel like im always talking about the problems with my mum.

    I have tried to change the subject about 'going home' but it never works, i just say that i will sort it out when i get home. I dont want to lie to her. can anyone offer any advise on what to say or do?

    I feel very alone

  2. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    SW Scotland
    Hi Georgina

    Welcome to TP. It sounds as if you need us!

    You desperately need some support, you can't go on coping with your mum and a job.

    Have you been in touch with the local branch of Alzheimer's Society? They'll be able to point you in the direction of local support.

    Have you had an assessment by social services? Your mum should have one, and you should also have a carer's assessment to see what support they can give you.

    I'm afraid the wanting to go home is very common with AD sufferers. If you do a search, you'll find lots of posts about it.

    The general opinion seems to be that the 'home' they want is more about needing security. It may even be the childhood home, life is so confusing for them. Arguing doesn't help, you just have to go along with it. It's difficult to know how to handle it when you're at work.

    Your mum seems to get upset when she's alone, she's probably very frightened. It might be an idea to ask social services about respite care for her. She might be better with company.

    Whatever you decide, do try to get some help. You cant carry on like this.

    Post again and let us know how you are getting on.

    Best wishes,
  3. alfjess

    alfjess Registered User

    Jul 10, 2006
    south lanarkshire
    Hi georgina

    Sorry, no advice but great sympathy, I am going through nearly the same scenario and it is wearying. Mum isn't phoning but coming to visit from (next door) every 5/ 10 mins. all day, when not at daycare.

    Is Social Services already involved? Can you perhaps get a befriender? Is she attending Daycare?

    Sorry no other advice, but I,m sure someone with more experience, will answer soon

  4. allylee

    allylee Registered User

    Feb 28, 2005
    west mids
    Hi Georgina,

    until now I thought there was only myself and Cate who has experienced the relentless phone calls.
    Your scenario is exactly what I was going through a month ago, up to 40 calls from 4pm when mum came home from day care, right through the night.In the end I stayed with her from 6 pm til 10pm every evening. but as soon as I left the calls would start.
    A month ago I was on the verge of a breakdown, burnt out from sleep deprivation and exhaustion.Like you I was crying constantly, snappy and depressed.
    Having been there Georgina, I urge you to seek help for your own physical and mental health.The phone calls were a reflection of mums anxiety, she needed help too.
    My mum went into full time care a week after I told the social worker that I couldnt cope any longer.THe emotions that hit me then were something else, but mum is a different lady. Calmer, reassured by having 24 hour company and she looks wonderful.Im pretty good now too!
    You dont mention a social worker , but I hope you have one, and if not get referred ASAP.Having experienced the same situation I know how destructive and intolerable it is.
    Lots of love
    Ally xx
  5. Kriss

    Kriss Registered User

    May 20, 2004
    I found "going home" one of the hardest things to deal with. It is heartbreaking when someone can no longer recognise their "home" and their nearest and dearest. Mum became "that funny woman" to Dad on many occasions. She was blamed for stopping him from going "home" to see his mother (dead for 40 years).

    Fortunately for us the sun downing, as we later heard it called, came and went each day. After our initial reaction of trying to talk sense to dad we soon came to realise that you have to go along with the mood. We employed the delaying and distracting technique.

    OK but I need to finish this first then I will take you
    OK but I need a cuppa before we go, do you want one

    and when things got really bad (just once did we get this far) and we actually ended up in the car...

    I need to call in to see x on the way to drop off something etc etc etc

    By the time we had our cups of tea, or whatever excuse we had used he would forget the original need to be going anywhere.

    Absolutely no use trying to fight it
    Good Luck

  6. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    What everyone says is so true - and I particularly agree with Kriss on ways to defuse the sundowning - the post above could be printed and put on our walls!
  7. Michael E

    Michael E Registered User

    Apr 14, 2005
    Ronda Spain
    Georgina hi,

    welcome to the club! The wanting to go home thing is maddening - my wife wants to go home to her parents! Now she is 67 and they died some 15 and 20 years ago so the hope is a little unrealistic....

    my solution to the 'going home' demand is saying we will leave first thing in the morning. As soon as it is daylight... It does create the occasional response that surely we could leave now but I explain it is too far and all the tickets are booked for tomorrow.

    The wanting the parents bit is by saying they are in Dreux (where they are buried) and that we can go and see them tomorrow.

    Of course tomorrow never comes and she never ever remembers.. goldfish...

    The paranoia that I am trying to poison her, keep her prisoner and steal from her is a little more difficult... Hard to prove a negative... It does have one advantage.. We have a bottle of wine in the evenings with dinner. Monique is now convinced that it too is perhaps poisoned so only takes a tiny amount.. That leaves a lot more for me. There is a good side to everything!

    It's a really horrid illness and the confusion of the sufferer is I think akin to some sort of madness - mental illness - there is no rational way of dealing with it except finding the right medications and telling them what they want to hear.. In order to survive...

    good luck with it

  8. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    I think that it one of the more difficult concepts to get one's head around. There are a lot of things that are harder from a practical point of view but lying? Very very difficult to come to terms with. It's not only the accepting that it's sometimes necessary, it's doing it when you're caught unawares: most of us have it ingrained in us that we tell the truth, particularly when the truth is so self-evident (to us at any rate). If you're asked "does this dress make me look fat" your antenae go up, but "when are we going home" is a question that, coming out of the blue as it does, can flumox the best of us.

    I would like to say that I am ever patient with my mother, and that I never lose my temper. I would like to say it, but it wouldn't be true, unfortunately. You just have to forgive yourself and move on: it's a salutary experience to realise that you're not perfect. The way I look at it is one could spend a fortune and years in therapy to achieve this level of self-knowledge. I know that sounds flippant, but one has to get something out of this god-awful experience, and a somewhat black sense of humour is, personally, helpful. However, YMMV.

  9. georgina66

    georgina66 Registered User

    Mar 30, 2007
    London Uk
    Thankyou all for replying to my letter, I found it a great comfort to know how many other people are in the same boat as me.

    I do have a social worker and have things in place such as a carer in twice a day for medication and I also hire a lady to come 3 times a week for (2 hours per time) to keep my mum company and to take her out, which is a god send. The phone calls have died down a bit maybe because im not answering them most of the time. One day she will only call twice other days its all day long. I used to call her to see how she is but i dare not as it reminds her and then she starts calling all day long. She is so adamant that she is not in her own home, it is very sad.

    I have also had some good news, the social worker and the great staff at the memory clinic have organised 6 weeks of the year rest-bite in a residential home. That means that my mum can go to a really nice home near where my sister lives (Folkstone). We have told her it will be like a holiday as it is by the sea plus my sister can take a share of looking after her/visiting her and that I can have a break. The 6 weeks is free, social services are paying for it and all we have to pay is £94 for a week rather that £350. I didnt realise that people can go into homes for a short break and that social service will pay even though my mum has savings more that 12,000. As this is all new, there is alot of help out there but it is how you find out about it.

    Hopefully in time this will be the place my mum will go to when she gets really bad and at least we can have a sneak preview of what the staff/place is like. I dread the day this happens as i have read so many other peoples letters on this website and how hard they find it when their parent is asking them when they are going home.

    By my mums front door is always a packed suitcase and the cat basket for her to leave. i did have an idea to take her in the car saying we are going home and drive around for an hour and then arrive back to the house - i wonder if it would make a difference? I may try it out and let you all know.

    I have been trying harder now to change the subject when the 'when are we going home' starts and have now given up on trying to convince her that she is home. It is too exhausting.

    Once again thanks for the response and sorry i didnt reply sooner but couldnt get onto an online computer.

    (Ps. to the gentleman Michael - that said about his wife thinking she was poisoning him and he said there was one good thing that came out of it and that was that he got more wine - that made me laugh so much!)

    Take care,

    Kind regards
  10. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    #10 Lila13, Apr 6, 2007
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2007
    While I was staying in my mother's house with her she was filling up my answering-machine in my house (3 hours away), though she generally attributed the messages to two of her imaginary friends ...

    (She didn't say she wanted to go home though. In November-December after her long stay in hospital she started every day with "where am I?" ("Where do you think you are?" I'd point out certain things, furniture, pictures, including her own. "Now, let me see, let me guess, let me see if I can guess where I am" repeated so often it turned into a joke.) And after shorter stays away she said "now I remember I am only happy in my own home". Before she was ill it was usually "I've always hated this house".)

  11. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    My husband has just been to our local Railway Station, on the south east coast, and returned in a foul mood, because when he asked the price of a ticket to Jamui, a little village in India, the stationmaster told him there is no such place.
  12. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    He has been trying to get `home` all day. It`s driving me up the wall. All he wants to know is which train to get and will he get his pension there. I have had this since first thing this morning, he missed the Grand National, which used to be a `must`, he watched the football, but as soon as it finished, it was back again to going home. He thought we`d just come to visit in order to watch the football. I made dinner, he ate it, then half an hour later he asked me what`s for dinner. He made me a cup of tea, went back into the kitchen and brought me another one. He says he can`t wait for tomorrow because as soon as it`s light he`ll go home.
  13. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    Nothing to say, really Sylvia, just think you need a big virtual hug
    {{{ }}}
  14. BeckyJan

    BeckyJan Registered User

    Nov 28, 2005
    Grannie G: Just lots of sympathy - hard to keep your patience isn't it? Just hope you have a better day tomorrow. Best wishes Beckyjan
  15. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    SW Scotland
    Sylvia, so sorry you've had such a rotten day. I hope tomorrow will be better.

    Love and hugs,

    Attached Files:

  16. myrtle50

    myrtle50 Registered User

    Apr 14, 2007
    This is my first time on this (or any) forum, so apologies for any errors:(
    I can sympathise with you Georgina, as my husband is constantly wanting to 'go home' unfortunately the home he has in mind is the one he grew up in, over 60 yrs ago! I wish you well & will look forward to reading future messages.
  17. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    SW Scotland
    Hi Myrtle

    Welcome to TP. I'm sorry you're having these problems with your husband, I think you will be able to relate also th Sylvia (Grannie G), who is having a bad time at the moment.

    Do you care alone, or do you have help? I care for my husband, and it gets very lonely at times.

    Post again, and let us know more about you.
  18. noelphobic

    noelphobic Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    Just wanted to say welcome to TP and can't see any errors to apologise for!

    Take care
  19. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Thanks friends, It`s so wonderful how, in the depths of despair and full of `fedupness`, the TP Forum turns up trumps.

    I`ve made a point of keeping him company this evening, but he`s just staring into space, in a world of his own.

    Now I have to wait to see if this is a new stage or a lapse.
  20. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Hi Mirtle, a warm welcome from me too.

    I sympathise with you having to cope with your husband wanting to go back to his home of 60 years ago.

    My husband does too. But to complicate matters, the home he grew up in is in India, but he is confusing it with Manchester, where he lived for 50 years. So he thinks he`s a train journey away.

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