When the cats away....

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by Charlie, Jun 11, 2005.

  1. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003
    161
    It's hard for a carer to keep an eye on someone 24/7 but mum dropped off for an hour today and woke to a lot of noise in the bedroom. Dad had removed every item from the wardrobe, everything and tried to hang the clothes up in different places, twisting the hook ties around window latches, door handles any place he could. He seemed quite content with his cunning plan but has caused incredible stress for my mum. We can't really lock the wardrobe, its huge with mirrored doors and we expect him to do it again at some point. Mum has begged him not to do it again, but he is obviously obsessed with this new 'Project'. For someone who is so forgetful about day to day things, it seems incredible that he can get obsessive about such a grand task. It's started to make me wonder if dad now needs to be watched all the time - a very difficult task for any carer.

    Looks like we are going to need to keep an eye on him constantly now.

    Cheers
    Charlie....
     
  2. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Hi Charlie,

    Oh God! The old moving the clothes out of the wardrobe trick!

    This was a favourite 'project' of my father's as well, usually mid to late afternoon when he'd decided that he and Mum had to 'go home' and was a big part of his sundowning. We couldn't lock the wardrobes either and it did get pretty irritating at times, especially since he would mix all their garments up together.

    One way of dealing with this is to provide a couple of suitcases so that he can pack his clothes away and then your mother can just restore them to the wardrobe later on, rather than having them draped all over the bedroom.

    Another way is to move a lot of his clothes into a spare bedroom so that he only has a few items to shift - and a lot less muddle to clear up afterwards.

    This used to drive me crazy initially, but then I decided that it did at least keep him well occupied for a couple of hours in the afternoon and stopped him becoming agitated and cranky. I also moved their meal time forward because I found that this would happen when he was feeling hungry. Alternatively a good afternoon tea might keep him happy until the evening meal.

    Hope this might be useful.

    Jude
     
  3. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003
    161
    Jude, thanks for the tips, I'll pass it on to mum.
    I think that boredom plays a big part in this. Once a very active, dad was always doing something, building something, working in the garden, out for a work, muddling through finances, reading. And now unless supervised, he finds any task impossible..... Again, thanks.
     
  4. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Dear Charlie,

    Boredom is my father's worst enemy too. Your father sounds very similar with wanting to work and do things of a practical nature. He's always needed to feel useful and became so frustrated when he could no longer manage woodworking, gardening and electrical stuff.

    I think the act of rearranging the clothing might have been a way of trying to regain some sort of organisation over his very confused mind and an attempt to try and impose some control over his life in more lucid moments when he knew that he was losing the plot.

    Jude
     
  5. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003
    161
    Hi Jude,

    I've been thinking about ways to help dad with the boredom factor and have decided to gather some old items that he can fiddle with and take to bits (old radios etc). This may help relieve the boredom and as far as I can see will do little harm. Will let you know how it goes....
     
  6. Jude

    Jude Registered User

    Hi Charlie,

    I'm starting to think that we actually share the same father.... Radios? This was Dad's major hobby. Old fashioned radios with valves and things. Ditto for old alarm clocks. You might like to try a few of those as well. At least they don't have to be plugged in to the electrical circuit.

    Jude
     
  7. Charlie

    Charlie Registered User

    Apr 1, 2003
    161
    Good call Jude...
    Must remember to remove the plug first! I'm just thinking along the lines that it can't do any harm and may at least provide a challenge. I'm off to the dump and an old radio shop tomorrow to ask if they have any old radios etc that they can spare. The only problem of course is that dad will hide everything once it is dismantelled.......
     

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