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taking care of father with late stage dementia
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jennifer1969 posted:
oh my, I never thought it would be so hard. My fathers insurance ran out at the nursing home he was at after a stroke that effected his memory and all reasoning. They gave us a days notice and we had to pay for 7 days to keep him there where I had to find a home that was safe and close to me. It only took an hour to find them a place by me and I was packing and moved them in within that week. My older sister brought him to his new home and I have been here day and night taking care of him and trying to control my moms anger toward him. He is so confused and mood swings that I feel is normal for this progressive disease but my Mother is ready to send him to a VA home miles away so she doesn't have to deal with him. i can't let that happen and she seriously needs support... We live in the St. Louis area and would love to learn of a support group to help him and probably me too. Any suggestions?
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cjh1203 responded:
Jennifer, I'm really sorry that your family is going through this awful time.

I'm assuming that your father was diagnosed with Alzheimer's before his stroke?

Please contact your local Alzheimer's Association, and arrange to talk to someone there about your family's situation. They also have support groups that can be invaluable in getting through this. If you can convince your mother to go, it might help her understand more about your dad's behavior.

It's understandable that your dad is having a tough time; moving is traumatic for an Alzheimer's patient. Consistency and structure are extremely important in Alzheimer's, and it's frightening when the routine changes so much. He'll most likely settle in and adapt to the new surroundings, but the transition can be hard for everyone.

Could you have your father's doctor talk to your mother and discuss the disease with her? It sounds like she either doesn't understand it or is in major denial about it. I hope you can find a way to get through to her.

One thought in the meantime is to just ask her not to visit your dad. It sounds like that would be easier for her and, if your dad is picking up on her anger, it would be better for him, too. Maybe you could tell him she has a cold or something.

Please keep us posted.

Best wishes-
Carol
 
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Judith L London, PhD responded:
Hi jennifer1969,

So sorry to hear how both your parents are so upsetting. You are great to be helping out.

Perhaps you could accompany your mother to a support group. A clergyman may also help, or some counseling for her to deal with her understandable anger at your father for their lives having taken such a serious turn. Consider keeping him nearby for your own well-being. I agree with all of Carol's wise suggestions.

Keep up the good work,
Judy
 
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peacefulone57 replied to Judith L London, PhD's response:
Hello I am writing to anyone that will listen or who ever will read this. my mom is in the last stages of the disease last week there was hope that she might pull out of this and be able to come home. But in a matter of days she does not respond and her conversation is just a lot of not making any sense I feel so helpless
 
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cjh1203 replied to peacefulone57's response:
Hello, peacefulone. That's so sad about your mother -- I'm really sorry.

Can you tell us a little more about your mother's situation? Is she in a facility, or in the hospital? Is there something physical going on, besides the Alzheimer's? What does her doctor say?

When you say there was "hope that she might pull out of this...", I'm not sure if you're referring to Alzheimer's or a physical condition.

We will be happy to listen and offer any support and advice we can. I hope you'll tell us a little more so we know what you're dealing with.

Take care.
Carol
 
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Judith L London, PhD replied to peacefulone57's response:
Hi,

So sorry to hear about your Mom. If she has Alzheimer's, it is not reversible, and sometimes people may begin to talk 'gibberish'.

However, she may be having a stroke or an infection so she needs to be seen by a physician ASAP.

Hope you get some help,
Judy


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