Well! Hello and welcome, Elizabeth Timmins

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by Chesca, Oct 11, 2004.

  1. Chesca

    Chesca Guest

    Hello, Elizabeth

    I read your post on Jude's thread about the Father's finances driving her mad.

    You must be feeling pretty sad at this time, after events of the last years. I found your Mum's experience of the 'boy' very poignant. Very touching. The letter dated 1941......

    Mum has similar illusions and when she was asking me if the 'boy' was alright, she was 'troubled' she said, it almost broke my heart to tell her he was as fine as fine as could be. My brother died in a tragic accident when he was six, some 40+ years ago. Was that where she was?

    Keep in touch
    thinking of you
  2. barraf

    barraf Registered User

    Mar 27, 2004
    Hello Elizabeth

    I read your post too, I think we all get to experiece the living in the past.

    Lately where ever we go Margaret says "I used to dance here" this might be the bowling green, the supermarket, the pedestrian precinct in town or in a large shop. I usually reply "that must have been a long time ago love" That seems to satisfy her for the moment.

    Last night we were sat in front of the television, I won't say watching because Margaret can't follow the story line any more. When she turned to me and said, "I'm glad you've come in. Make yourself at home" We have been married 53 years next month. I nearly cried.

    Just keep hold of the good memories and the bright spots that shine through the darkness every now and then.

    Cheers Barraf
  3. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    West Sussex
    Hi Elizabeth, welcome to TP. Hope you will find us a good way to vent your feelings, don't worry, say what you need to, we all do, it's all about sharing the moment here. My Mum was in the past a lot too, for over two years I was never me for long, I was her cousin who was also her her best friend at school. It used to really hurt when she told Essie, (me really) that she hadn't seen her daughter for weeks. Keep postin' love She. XX
  4. Chesca

    Chesca Guest

    Dear folks

    I always make an effort, and believe me sometimes it is an effort, to look 'smart' when I visit Mum in her new home, because she always did and insisted we did. And she does notice. When she is lucid even introduces me to whoever is sitting next to her with a 'have you come straight from work, oh, this is my daughter?' but it's getting rarer that she knows I'm her daughter! And then she asks me if the baby is OK. I'm 51!

    Lots of good stuff
  5. TED

    TED Registered User

    Sep 14, 2004
    good morning all
    and welcome Elizabeth
    many thanks for your post, it has already helped me
    with something that happened on Sunday over at mum and dads.

    mum can appear fine most of the time and you can talk with her about everyday things and the rest of the family, but later in the evening she was talking to me as if I was someone else and then talked about me (some very nasty and personal stuff) which was most upsetting as Dad was also there ... I wont repeat what it was but it wasnt very nice and I struggled to sit and listen without getting really angry, though I finally got up and walked out in tears.

    I tried to forget about it and put it down to mums condition but what bothered me was that Dad said nothing to defend us, I think it was just as well I left cos the more I thought about it when i got home the worse I was. And then I'm also trying to counter it with thoughts of "well she doesnt mean what she says"

    but now that I've had a day to simmer, I think I may be seeing another side to her condition where she is regressing to an earlier part of her life as you spoke about in your story of your mum, it wasnt something I was prepared for.

    I'm going back over there tonight, dunno how that will feel, only hope she doesnt turn on Dad like that cos that could be too much.

    Anyway plenty of work to do
    Thank you all again for giving us the forum to get things off my chest.

  6. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    Hi Ted

    your Dad probably didn't attempt to defend you because he realised from having tried before that it serves no purpose other than to escalate the confusion. There's no arguing with Alzheimer's because argument requires understanding, and that is what has gone.

    It is another one of those 'grit your teeth' moments, I'm afraid.

    Your Mum is trying to make sense of things based on scraps of memories scattered over time, in a world where her perceptions are blunted. She is also trying to assert herself to show that she can still do that - she will know she is losing some of her faculties and will want to reassure herself and the other people she is talking to.

    It is all quite desperate for all parties, but my feeling is that it is best not to try and reason with someone in this condition who is saying these things. It is not Mum, but Alzheimer's talking, don't forget!
  7. TED

    TED Registered User

    Sep 14, 2004
    please dont get me wrong, I am not angry with them, (well not now anyway, probably was for about 10 mins till I got home and kicked the cat) I just wasnt prepared for it at the time as it kind of came on very suddenly, I'd been over there all day and till then had a good time.

    All part of the learning process, but if I am really honest while I understand what is happening I become less equiped to cope with it emotionally. Guess this must be true for everyone here, so while I moan about it to someone I also have to get myself together to understand that it's not going to get better.

    wish you all a happy and stress free day

  8. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Living in the Past

    Dear All,

    Firstly WELCOME TO TP, ELIZABETH and many thanks for your post on the other thread.

    Besides all the current financial strife, my father is also firmly stuck in the past in other ways. He insists on talking about houses and places that he lived in years before I arrived on Earth - and gets very cross when I can't possibly answer.

    Also, more recent places of abode: are they still there, who got the money from the sales of said properties; where is that money now. To alleviate this, I have tried driving him to his childhood home on several occasions, as well as our two previous family homes. I don't actually think that this is such a wise thing to do now, as it seems to make him worse in some ways. Most of the old friends and neighbours have died now, which only serves to depress him further and he seems to take their demises as a personal insult.

    Our most recent scene has been regarding his insistence that his mother is still alive [she'd be 150 at least]. There is no point adopting the 'okay, have it your way approach' otherwise he will insist on visiting her. When I gently say that she died years ago, he gets incredibly angry and it's a case of 'why wasn't I informed about this?'

    Can't win......!

  9. elizabeth timms

    elizabeth timms Registered User

    Oct 11, 2004
    The Boy

    I guess she was. My mother told me, the day before she went into care, that she had, as a toddler killed a puppy by accident when playing. It took her almost 53 years to tell me that. I believe that story to be true. So what else goes on in her mind...I have no idea. Thank for your kind thoughts.
  10. Katy44

    Katy44 Registered User

    Sep 14, 2004

    My grandma has two small boys who appear and disappear at random and ocassionally need looking after and cooking for (she actually has 2 daughters and 3 granddaughters). I didn't realise they were a common complaint!
  11. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    West Sussex
    When I was working in a nursing home, we had a little old lady, she was a Miss, very prim and proper, but some times in the night, she would get hysterical because she couldnt find the baby, or we had to be careful not to hurt the baby when we tucked her in. What would you make of that? Love, She. XX
  12. Mjaqmac

    Mjaqmac Registered User

    Mar 13, 2004
    My mum continually asks about her baby and whom is looking after it? She is always going on at dad to take her up home to get the kids their tea and that her little girl (me) will have no one to look after her.

    God this is all so sad. Such a horrible bubble for us all to be stuck in both victims and carers.
  13. Norman

    Norman Registered User

    Oct 9, 2003
    Birmingham Hades
    My wife asks frequently is Mom alive ?She asks if my mom is alive?They would be 104 and 90+.
    She also says that we are living in her mothers house,her mother never owned a house!
    Ted, Bruce is right it seems that Dad is a fast learner -you cannot argue with AS,don't try you can't win.
    Our consultant told me of a patient who would not eat her meals.T he reason was that she cooked her husbands meal and he did not eat it (he was dead) he did not eat his so she would not eat her's
    Ted forget the nasty remarks I had a right roasting this morning ,drop dead,how did I get mixed up with you,I'l smash you down the stairs. It does hurt we have been married 57 years and sometimes she asks me "Where is Norman did he say when he would be back"?
  14. susan

    susan Registered User

    Aug 18, 2003
    east sussex

    hi there all
    sorry for long break, but having read all the postings on this thread it brought back when dad used to call me his brother, but in between he was quite lucid - please grit your teeth through these times as all too soon there will be little conversation that makes sense. This stage of AD had me in tears more often than his current state - because all the time he had lucid moments there was hope - now i know that i will never have another conversation again.

    Please enjoy all the time you have now and growl at the board if you need to - it helped me big time when dad was at an earlier stage.
    Take care all sue
  15. Chesca

    Chesca Guest

    #15 Chesca, Oct 12, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 12, 2004
    Dear lovely folks

    Mum often used to 'want to go home'. I think it's called 'sundowning'. My cousin still lives in her family home and Dad would be driving her up and down like something from Whacky Races in a loving effort to placate her. She would arrive and ask why they were there!

    Showing her her own mother's death certificate, I now realise, was unkind as she was reliving her grief every time - why didn't anyone tell me, I should have been there, etc. it was not good enough telling her that she had been a good and kind daughter; as far as she was concerned her Mum had died, Dad was the worst kind of bxxxxxd for trying to keep her away and all other manner of brutal comments!

    To questions concerning my Grandmother I have learnt always to say: Nana? she's fine I've not long left her and she was making an apple pie for tea. Or, she's on holiday for a week down at (wherever) and I spoke to her today and she's having a marvellous time! Just some kind of reassurance according to HER present day, not mine.

    Ted, take comfort from what Bruce says about your Dad's reaction; Dad is going through this behind the scenes and has developed his own coping mechanisms, much as it hurts you to see and hear it. Just be there in support with your love and understanding.

    I do hope the cat is not a real one - otherwise there'll be 'murder' on this site!!! Me? I'd kick anything with no apologies to anybody when I felt as you, or for the fact everybody on TP, to experiencing such hurt and pain.

    Lots of love
  16. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    West Sussex
    Hi all, a tactic I found useful was to say, "well I can't really do/sort that out for you today, lets leave it till tomorrow." Of course when tomorrow came, I then said, "well I can't really etc etc" as Mum didn't remember asking before, I just kept tomorrowing for ever! Worked with a lot of things. Love She. XX
  17. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Dear All,

    Iwonder why these incidents of small children and babies seem so common? It seems odd, since it doesn't seem to be 'their' childhood that they reliving, but an imaginary child.

    Any ideas, anyone?

  18. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    I swear I'm going more than a little loony myself because I always try and understand what is going on by trying to put myself in their place, and by observation of the 24 people at Jan's care home.

    Carrying around teddy bears, dogs, gorillas, plates, cushions, cups and plates, and anything else not bolted down is common, as is reference to children and babies in the present tense.

    My reading? These people have lost their lives as they knew them. Once they had responsibilities and these made them feel valuable. Now they have no responsibilities at all but they still want to feel there is a reason for them to be around.

    The men often tend to become honorary Pickfords employees and start shifting furniture around. Some people become honorary care assistants and start collecting other residents; they end up walking around in daisy chains. Others grab objects and make themsleves responsible for them. Others retreat into memories and are once again responsible for children who have been a long time grown up - or who may never even have existed.

    As we all do, these people want to be needed, not needy.

    There may be aspects to sundowning that are the same. If people feel cooped up, they want to assert their ability to do something independently, and the most natural instinct is to return home - especially if the current place they are at is unfamiliar, even if it has been their home for many years.
  19. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Dear Brucie,

    That sounds like a nice bit of reasoning.... Carole bought Mum a fluffy yellow duck some weeks back. Mum's response was 'What is this stupid duck for?' Obviously, she isn't one who likes small toys but prefers tissues, although she seems to have stopped doing that so much recently. She also loves chatting to babies and small children.

    I try and keep my parents as occupied as possible with small chores around the house. Doesn't always work - especially not with father's new swimming pool project in the kitchen this morning! He was quite alarmed, but I did the right thing and told him it was a small accident as I'd probably left the tap running by mistake. Anyway, the floor needed a wash.... the hall carpet probably didn't need one, but there you go.

    The parents have now gone out with a friend to do an £8 raid on Sainsbury's, which leaves the floor to dry out nicely and gives me a hour's peace and quiet.

  20. Sheila

    Sheila Registered User

    Oct 23, 2003
    West Sussex
    Dear Brucie, as usual you have made good sense of it and I think you are right, it's a need to feel responsible and needed. Love She. XX

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