Will I ever learn....

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by Sad Staffs, Jul 31, 2018.

  1. Sad Staffs

    Sad Staffs Registered User

    Jun 26, 2018
    678
    Female
    Will I ever get used to these light switch moments, when he looks as though he hates me? And he tells me to F off and means it. And will I ever learn to walk away and not react, either with angry words... or more often tears? I know it is only going to get harder.
     
  2. B72

    B72 Registered User

    Jul 21, 2018
    132
    Oh Sad Staffs, I don’t know what to say to you, except to wish you well. If only I knew. But not to say anything feels very cold. The thoughts of many, if not all are with you on these difficult occasions. xx
     
  3. Rosebush

    Rosebush Registered User

    Apr 2, 2018
    1,478
    Hi sadstaffs, we've had a few weeks of peace OH has been very cheerfull and quite nice, however yesterday just the mention of a shower everything changed, he was calling me all the names under the sun, saying I just wanted to get rid of him (I wish) but I am learning to ignore it although it does upset me, I just carried on and had a shower and when I came down stairs he was sat on the sofa as if nothing had happened, I made coffee and we went shopping!, today he had a shower as usual. Who knows what will happen tomorrow, so do what I do and just ignore him.Take care. Lx
     
  4. Janie M

    Janie M Registered User

    Jun 12, 2018
    68
    Hi sadstaffs, agree with all, it’s so so hard to ignore and not feel hurt. And outsiders don’t see this do they? OH siblings say, oh he seems alright today, . As you say being told to F off, and said with venom can break the best ! I just seem to cry most days, but then have to paint a smile on. Hugs. X
     
  5. imsoblue

    imsoblue Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
    353
    I ask myself that on a daily basis @sadstaffs. His behavior these days is so close to when he was mad or angry, but not diagnosed and probably not stricken, that it almost appears normal in my world. Yet, I'm not supposed to fight back because it's the dementia and not his personality. (Didn't know whether that deserved a question mark or a period!) I'm a people-pleaser and just can't please him which also crushes me. So I get angry and find myself arguing back. Everything is an argument. And it's one I can't let him win, because it is just (I don't know another word to use) stupid. I had to take his mobile phone to our house to charge (he is in a CH) because his charger didn't seem to be working. Oh, he was cursing me out for that. He couldn't do without a phone. Duh, you don't have a phone you can use. But I was the villain for taking his phone. Then he tells his daughters how terrible I am to him.
    Hang in there. Some of us can say "we have each other."
     
  6. Amethyst59

    Amethyst59 Registered User

    Jul 3, 2017
    5,749
    Female
    Kent
    Yes, hang in there....so many people here are experiencing the same things, and we are all supporting each other.
     
  7. Sad Staffs

    Sad Staffs Registered User

    Jun 26, 2018
    678
    Female
    It helps to know that I’m not alone, thank you.
    After this afternoons episode, we were into sulky silence, and then his brother and wife called. My OH was so normal, holding the conversation, he was just the man I have known for more than 40 years. Even I thought what is going on.... is it me? If it wasn’t for the fact that there was a book on the coffee table about understanding dementia, no one would have a clue what he can be like.
    They left, and before the door was shut he had lost it again, getting aggressive and vicious. So so hard, I don’t think I will ever understand x
     
  8. Ernest

    Ernest Registered User

    Jan 23, 2018
    84
    Hi Sadstaffs. Your OH sounds so like mine! I made the most terrifying decision of my life because I couldn't cope any longer and he is now in a CH. Every time I visit he gets angry and shouts at me telling me I need to take him home. He cannot accept, because his dementia won't allow him to, that he isn't able to come home. Like you, I try not to react but it is so very hard. Like you, he is all sweetness and light with the carer's and when I have come away in tears they tell me he's such a nice bloke ! I feel as if I've imagined it !! After yesterday's visit which was very difficult as usual, I thought about coming on to TP but didn't. After reading your posts though I wanted to share with you my thoughts and to say that we are all in this together which, for me, is of immense comfort. I hope that knowing there are lots of us trying to come to terms with this awful disease will help you too.
     
  9. Hazara8

    Hazara8 Registered User

    Apr 6, 2015
    354

    It is of course extremely difficult to confront such behaviour with calm intent, knowing someone so very well and accepting that dementia is the actual culprit, when the invective is levelled directly at you. But whatever personality resides behind this behaviour, a damaged brain is no longer capable of making sense of the world which we know and function within, day to day and without referral to how we should react or process our own behaviour. However, the
    dementia person has lost that capacity. His or her expression of anger, anxiety, aggression
    and so on, is by way of communicating though a cloud, a cloud of which we still know so little
    about. The brain being so extraordinarily complex, once inhibited or damaged, is no longer
    capable of interacting in the same way. And yet, one finds that physical 'communication' -
    touch, an embrace or a hug - seems to bring about an affinity between the one who is caring
    and the one who is living with this disease. It is often stated in specialist circles, that 'your
    behaviour determines dementia behaviour'
    . I can understand the thinking behind this. In as
    much as I have observed carefully, in the Care Home where I work, just how sensitive people
    can be to tone of voice, the way you approach them, the manner in which you withdraw from
    them, the words you utter and the way in which you utter them - all of this does have an effect
    and a very real one. And whilst it is quite understandable to feel hurt and find it hard not to
    react in kind to this painful behaviour, that is really the only way to alleviate further angst and
    hurt. It is almost as if one ignores it, sets it aside and sees beyond it in order to touch the
    authentic person behind it.

    In the Care Home, when there is anger and rejection compounded by all the confusion which is part and parcel of a dementia, one can sometimes simply bypass it and move to that particular person and gently communicate on a totally different topic, or even make a cup of tea, as if the anger had never taken place. And then - not always - there can come about a transformation.

    A relationship with dementia in a loved one, is quite unique. You are a partner to something basically unknowable and yet the one whom it inhabits, you know as well as anyone on Earth. The one whom you love, appears to be a spokesperson for dementia, it is that real, that convincing. But in fact they are the victim, the recipient and become a 'mouthpiece' for the dementia which manipulates them. The 'lost soul' which is the person we know and have always known, is still there, albeit hidden. But when you glimpse that very 'lost soul' in a tear, in a smile, in a look so familiar, you see that the real person is truly there. And whilst held prisoner by dementia, the one you love and care for will know that you care, even if they appear oblivious to your caring. That is what one holds onto. And that
    is what tempers your own behaviour accordingly.
     
  10. pixie2

    pixie2 Registered User

    Jul 21, 2018
    39
    My darling mother who has always been my best friend told me today I am a monster and she hates me she physically pushed me away and I sobbed my eyes out to lovely care staff. She shouting she won't eat or take tablets. I cried all the way home
     
  11. pixie2

    pixie2 Registered User

    Jul 21, 2018
    39
    Its so hard I want her to hug me, the old her would be devestated she d made me cry
     
  12. Lindy50

    Lindy50 Registered User

    Dec 11, 2013
    5,239
    Cotswolds
    I’m so sorry @pixie2 :(
    You know it’s the dementia talking, but it still hurts doesn’t it? Hope you get some rest tonight
    Lindy xx
     
  13. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    70,169
    Kent
    It might not @Sad Staffs. It got better for us once my husband began to lose his insight.

    I remember thinking [ and saying ] I did not deserve this behaviour or treatment when we went through these light switch moments. They drove me to tears too and in tears, I would leave the room. It really is impossible to predict when they might happen, there is no obvious trigger.

    I do hope they fade in time.
     
  14. AliceA

    AliceA Registered User

    May 27, 2016
    2,581
    My adored father was extremely difficult to me, he directed all his hurt and anger my way. People often do this to the person that they know will never desert them come what may. It is perhaps a back handed compliment although that alone does not help at the time. The reason to train ourselves to act but not react, is that it is best for us, for our wellbeing. Fine words I know, I slip when I get over tired. So think about what you need now. Not yesterday or tomorrow. Reason does not work with unreasonable people. Take care. Breathe in and breathe out slowly through pursed lips! Works for me! ❤️
     
  15. malomm

    malomm Registered User

    Thank you for this billiant insight. It explains in detail what I have learned in 9 years of caring for Mrs M through the various stages. I find now that anger can be quelled not only with her medication, but by walking her round the house hand in hand, or combing her hair.I have also taught myself to accept unconditionally that it is the dementia talking, not the old normal Mrs M. I have also taught my self to accept the 'hostess' behaviour in company, a very common occurrence in dementia. I think and hope your post may help some of those who are just beginning to have to cope with dementia, and feel as lost, angry, and resentful as I did for several years.
    Keep smiling,
    malomm
     
  16. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    11,156
    Female
    South coast
    You are having a really bad time, imsoblue, arnt you? It doesnt sound as though either of you are enjoying your visits much. He is, unknowingly, pushing all your buttons, but please dont try to win - you can never win with dementia. I suspect that he is remembering the feelings of anger when he sees you, so it is all becoming a vicious cycle. Walk away as soon as he starts to become angry - dont try to placate him, or reason with him, it wont work, just walk away or say you need the loo, or something. If he hasnt calmed down when you get back I would cut the visit short. If this doesnt work you might have to not visit for a couple of weeks or more (Amy in the US tells how she didnt visit her mum for two whole months) to break this cycle.

    I also found that mum would "mirror" my moods. If I was happy and cheerful she would be too, but if I was tense and grumpy she would pick this up and be grumpy herself, so I had to watch my body language.

    PS I would have just left him with the non-working phone if he objected that much!
     
  17. Sad Staffs

    Sad Staffs Registered User

    Jun 26, 2018
    678
    Female
    Such words of wisdom, strength and support from you all.... thank you.
    I try, but I don’t understand, and doubt I ever will.
    I will do my very best for him and hope it is good enough, because above everything else I will always love him x
     
  18. imsoblue

    imsoblue Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
    353
    Thanks @AliceA I've quoted those same words (can't reason with an unreasonable person) and also remind myself to take a deep breathe. I do wonder if I am the only target because he knows I'll be there no matter what. I believe I am the target because I'm the one not letting him have his credit cards, passcodes, and refuse to do what he wants...like selling our home.
     
  19. imsoblue

    imsoblue Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
    353
    @canary, such good advice. You always have to repeat it to me. Apparently I'm not a quick learner.
    Everyday I've tried to skip, something has come up: my wheelchair has a flat tire was Monday. I can't find my glasses was yesterday. And today, he wouldn't answer his phone so I went there at lunch (I have a dinner engagement tonight with my kids) to make sure the phone was working. While I was there, I had to help him work the remote on the TV. He is getting so helpless. He had to call for help (of course he called me on the phone first) to have someone come plug in his phone to charge it. The Parkinson's Plus is doing a number on his coordination in addition to his brain.
    I get to go away August 15-18. I'll begin weaning him and me from my visiting now. Thanks!
     
  20. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    11,156
    Female
    South coast
    Wont the carers help him with all of that @imsoblue ? Surely that is the point of him being where he is - there is someone around to sort things like that out.
     

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