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Louise_WebMD_Staff posted:
My mother is reading the paper today. She just called me in to ask me what I thought of the idea of her getting a driver's license and leasing a car..."There is a good deal in the paper."

I enumerated several reasons why this is a bad idea. (memory loss, physical condition, inability to understand directions, cost.)

She is furious with me. Now is calling my sister to complain about me. sigh. Any good ideas here?
renalupie1 responded:
Sorry, sitting here laughing heartily. Been there done that with my mom. She so desperately wanted to get a bar stool to sit on so she could cook dinner. She was so mad when we told her she couldn't drive anymore! It is so hard for them to give up their independance no matter what kind of mental status they are in!

My only advice, is to just let her be angry. She will eventually get over it, or forget about it and move on. She is not technically mad at you, she is more mad at the condition she is in and can't be "normal" anymore. Hang in there. This is actually a stage of grief. Loss of self. Compassion and patience are key here.

Louise_WebMD_Staff responded:
I am glad you have been there done that. I know she isn't angry at me really. It is so frustrating for her to be dependent on me for a ride somewhere and even though the times I really CAN'T take her out are limited-she feels like they are huge.
renalupie1 responded:
I always tried to "look" through Mom's eyes. Especially after her amputations (double leg). I think of times where I have been injured unable to do what I needed to do or wanted to do. Like, when I had foot surgery and was in isolation in the hospital for ten days, and couldn't work for three months. It was very frustrating to let someone else wait on me, and drive me around. I tried to relate how I felt at that time (and others) to how mom felt. It is like a mountain when you are limited in your activity. That always got me through the times she was bitter and I couldn't let her do what she wanted.

She wanted to drive herself to dialysis. It was a thirty minute drive one way. She had had a stroke and only had half her field of vision... Yah, she was gonna drive. LOL. Moms. That determination is inspirational and frustrating at the same time!!!

Good luck Rena
DianeR01 responded:
Hi Louise,

We are caregivers for an 86 y/o cousin who has had several tia's and some dementia. We took his keys a couple of years ago and he was very mad at us. We were able to get him an electric scooter to go to the grocery and bank around the corner but have had to take that too since he has had several crashes.

His drivers license came up for renewal this past year and the question came up. He said he thought he should renew his license just in case something happened where he would need to drive. I countered with if something happens, cross that bridge then. The discussion pretty much ended.

I eventually sought help from a counselor who suggested addressing issues from a standpoint of acknowledging the limitation or loss then justifying the action. The line might have sounded something like..."I understand you may feel like we are taking away your freedom but because you cannot walk without the walker I am concerned for your ability to ... this has helped somewhat.

Guilt seems to be the ubiquitous comodity for the caregiver.

my best to you.


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