Will it every be forgotten

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by hollydar, Feb 4, 2016.

  1. hollydar

    hollydar Registered User

    Dec 17, 2015
    #1 hollydar, Feb 4, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016
    My Husband and I have been married 50 years on the 26th February, but he cannot remember the wedding or me most of the time. He tells me he married someone (with exactly the same name as me) and everything he does talk about is really me he is talking about, but he will not have it. I know he can't help it and I try to tell him everything to convince him. Am I doing the wrong thing.....should I just let him think this person existed, apart from me. He even asked me yesterday if I knew this person, telling me her name....which incidentally was the same as mine. He talks about mu Mother but insists it was this other persons Mother. I find it so difficult to cope and wonder if this confusion will always be in his head and will I be interrogated every day. We have no children and family all live far away and I feel so alone.
  2. marionq

    marionq Registered User

    Apr 24, 2013
    We have been married fifty years too. John thinks it's about ten years! I remind him about the ages of our children and all the places we've lived and things we've done. He agrees and then promptly forgets.

    Be philosophical if you can. Events will move on. New issues will crop up. He doesn't mean to hurt you and it's not about dismissing all you have been to each other. It's the illness and it's a brute.

    Good wishes.
  3. Ann Mac

    Ann Mac Registered User

    Oct 17, 2013
    You have my sympathy. For nearly 2 years, Mil, who lives with myself and her son (my husband, her only child) has frequently insisted that there are doubles of both of us - we may share the same name as her son and his wife, but we are not them. Same goes for our kids, and even our dogs. Not only that, but her 'son and his wife' live in a house identical to the one we live in, right down to the furniture, the decoration and the pictures on the wall being exactly the same. She often asks her son if she can phone her son. She tells me about how her daughter in law, Ann, is also cooking what I am cooking for tea - and on occasion has even came downstairs after I have helped her bath and given me a blow by blow account of how her daughter in law has just made her get in the bath and wash! I can ask or tell her something and she will say 'That's funny - Ann's just said that to me'.

    For the most part, I try and be non-committal now, simply saying 'Really' when she tells me what the 'other' Ann, or her 'other' son or grandchildren have said and done, and if possible I will distract. When she asks my husband if she can phone her 'son', it can be difficult when we obviously can't oblige her (as its her son she is talking to), and she can get really cross and verbally quite nasty. It isn't the best thing for eveyone, but for us, we often find that refusing to discus or asking her to go to her room when she is being offensive often works - once she is in a different room and away from any reaction, she often quickly forgets whatever it was that was upsetting her. I know this isn't the answer for everyone, though.

    Its not all day, every day, it comes and goes, with some days being worse than others. And over the last 3 or 4 months I would say that its happening a lot less often - as this horrible illness progresses, I'm confident that as Marion says, it will go completely and be replaced by other issues.

    Hang on in there, and hard as it is, please don't take it personally - I struggled at first, especially for some reason with her thinking like that about her grandchildren, when they used to mean the world to her, but I got used to it - though even now, when it does happen, I can still struggle with the confusion it can cause.

    Take care xxxx
  4. Ellaroo

    Ellaroo Registered User

    Nov 16, 2015
    My mum has lived with me for 6.5 yrs and it varies that she knows me and that i assist her, provide meals etc, to asking where i am, or her thinking she is me.
    Itbis different when is parent child rather than husband wife but still heartbreaking.
    As previously said it will pass and something else will replace it.
    I used to let mum know who i was but now just go along with it.
    Every day can be different, am using all my energy at moment to persuade mum to wash, bathe or shower. With the confidence of mrs thatcher she tells me no and backs it up, becoming abusive so i back down.
    So far things eventually resolve themselves.
    Hope you feel better regarding your husband, thinking of you xxxx
  5. CJinUSA

    CJinUSA Registered User

    Jan 20, 2014
    eastern USA
    #5 CJinUSA, Feb 4, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016
    My heart goes out to you. I'm sorry you are experiencing this, and on a daily basis. My mother forgets who I am sometimes. Sometimes she jokes with me as if I'm one of her caregivers and looks over my shoulder saying "Let's not tell her" (her being me, of course). Who knows what secret she wants to keep from me.

    Your experience sounds heartbreaking to me. I don't know if you are a reader, but if you are, you might benefit from reading about a similar circumstance that happened to an American newscaster. The book is by Barry Peterson, and it's called Jan's Story: Love Lost to the Long Goodbye of Alzheimer's. His wife didn't know who he was after awhile. He tells a very moving story about trying to find himself through it all, though the story is about her.

    I wanted to say, finally, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to you and your husband. You have come a long way with him, and what most comes clear is how WELL he chose when he chose you. What an achievement to remain married so long. I hope a friend will take you out to help you celebrate your life of strong commitment and love.
  6. Pear trees

    Pear trees Registered User

    Jan 25, 2015
    I can sympathise with you, my mum has forgotten who I am. She thinks I am her social worker or carer. When I do remind her who I am she just says 'oh her, she steals my money/food/clothes, never comes to see me' etc etc, even as I am cooking, cleaning and looking after her.
  7. Bigreader

    Bigreader Registered User

    Jan 22, 2016
    Lots of good advice here. I'm so lucky I only had this once from my mother not long before she died. She kept asking me where I was and instead of just saying I was doing something else, I kept trying to tell her I was there (I couldn't write or say this anywhere else without people thinking I need to be tested!). All she kept saying back to me was 'so YOU say'. It was a complete loop the whole time I was there and upset me greatly.

    You're doing really well and I know it hurts/frustrates, but I think you just have to go along with it sadly,

    BR x
  8. Tiller Girl

    Tiller Girl Registered User

    May 14, 2012
    my husband doesn't know what day our anniversary is or my birthday either. When he first forgot my birthday that's when I realised that he had a problem. He never missed my birthday or a card at Christmas. It's so sad.

    However, he's does still remember who I am so I'm fortunate in a lot of ways. I think if he ever gets to that stage I shall just joke along with him. I find laughter a good tonic and if they've got something in their head then no amount of correction will help them remember.
  9. Aisling

    Aisling Registered User

    Dec 5, 2015
    Hi Hollydar,

    Virtual hugs from Ireland. It is awful. My OH has no idea who I am most of the time, yet somewhere is the recesses of his mind, he needs me around.

    He is getting a weeks respite next Monday and I can't wait for it. I am being honest as this might help someone else.

  10. Livveywills

    Livveywills Registered User

    Jul 11, 2015
    My mum is the same, for a good year now there have been multiple Emma's. It is especially hard when the other Emma always seems to be the one who does the nice stuff like buying her mothers day gift or taking her on holiday whereas I am the bad one who causes trouble all the time. She even gave me bunch of flowers to give the other Emma to thank her for something I had to hide them in my bedroom.

    I used to get really upset by it and try to convince mum that I was that Emma, but it only caused more confusion, now I introduce myself as Emma, Darren's wife, the one who lives down the road with the children. The really strange thing is that although mum has started to forget the children's names occasionally she knows that they belong to her and knows my husband. yet the other day someone said to her how lucky she was to have such a caring daughter and she looked really blank, but agreed out of politness, you could see she hadn't a clue about having a daughter at all/

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