Repetition, repetition, repetition.

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I have been at this for years and really the worst part is the repetition which can go on for weeks and the worrying about trivial issues and negativity. I have tried everything as have my hired helpers and as a man who was so independent(me) this is so painful, boring, infantilizing and hurtful. Any suggestions beside the obvious? I have tried everything.....


Hi montauck. I thought you may find the following article helpful.
I know how you feel. All I can tell you is that it seems to lessen quite a bit, when a song comes on the radio or TV that is familiar to my mom. Have you tried playing music from the person's youth? My mom sings along, knows every word in tune. Thank God she sings well. It is quite comforting to me, actually.
I know the feeling as well. I have been at this (Live in full time care for my 2 elderly parents.) My mom has dementia and needs constant supervision. I sometimes feel like I am going to climb the walls. I don't have answers, but know you are not alone... if that helps.
Wish I had some answers - but as said above - you are not alone - and in some ways that does help. My caretaking days are over now; just remember - this too shall pass. It's an incredibly difficult thing to take on - my faith helped and having a break when I could. Hugs to you and take care.
My Mom has alzheimers and macular degenerative disease in one eye. So it's "Clean my glasses" or "itch pill" for her itchy, watering eyes. Sometimes all you can do is give them a project of some kind, coloring, cards, making a wreath from yarn, or something easy to take their mind off of it.
I remember when my Mom (now 83) was caring for HER father in my parents home and my Grandpa would repeat a lot of the stories of his youth (per se) and where he worked, etc. etc. I didn't mind listening to them because it gave me insight into his life but my Dad got more and more angrier listening to the same things over and over. I think part of my Dad's anger stemmed from the fact that my Grandfather was being taken care of by my Mom in THEIR home and he felt guilty because he couldn't do that for his Mom and Dad. In that last year of my Grandfather's life (he lived to age 90), I decided to have my Grandpa over for Thanksgiving Dinner (he died the following Spring) and give my parents a "break" to have their own Thanksgiving together (dinner out). My husband and I really enjoyed listening to my Grandpa. He didn't have Alzheimers. I think he just had age-related dementia. This is not scientific by any means, but I think the more recent brains cells die off as you get older and our elders remember the "old days" like it was yesterday and don't remember what they had for lunch the day before.

That said, now it is MY turn as a caregiver to my Mom and she is starting to do the same things. She tries to remember recent things she wants to tell me but has difficulty doing so. I think part of it is the medication (oxybutinen) she is on which causes this "foggyness" in elderly people. I've tried to get her to try to stop this medication but she doesn't want to because she loses her urine too much. I try to remind her to "write it down" when she thinks of it so she can "remember" to tell me what she wants to tell me. This is very frustrating for her as she has always been an "in control" person. I am hoping I'm not seeing what my future will be like. I, too, get frustrated sometimes but my husband is a good man and has always been a sounding board for me. It's hard to see your parents age (my Dad died 4 years ago). It seems everytime I go over to visit (she lives only a minute down the street), my Mom starts to cry. I think she's coming to the reality that life doesn't go on forever and she's trying to tell me things but she can't remember. My brother lives in her home (he's actually just a warm body there but he never really "talks" to her). He's never had a relationship or ever lived on his own -- he's 62 now and retired -- but mainly stays in his room all day. It's a good thing she has a cat to keep her company. My sister (who lives closer to my Mom than I do) never visits or calls. She lives with HER daughter and she's on SSD. My niece doesn't have a life. So I'm the only one who takes my Mom to the doctor, visits, or talks to her. I try to do as much as I can but I have to have a limit or I will go nuts. So when I have enough mental "strength" saved up, I go over and sit with my Mom and let her do the talking "over and over" often about the same things. Hang in there and know you are not alone.
They tell the same story or say the same thing over and over, even in the same conversation...but do they ask questions from you to see if you are listening? I always feel obligated to pay attention when someone is talking, no matter how boring they are, taught it would be rude to do otherwise but then my stomach ends up in knots rather quickly. Been thinking about using my smartphone and/or mp3 player with an ear piece in just one ear and listening to the kind of music that calms me while 'listening' to the same story again. I have given up telling only the truth and admit to skirting it or just telling an untruth with no regrets. So, I would explain I need to have the one ear piece in to listen for a very important phone call. I would like to think I could perfect this system to even listen to talk radio for some mental stimulation and/or education but for now thought I might start with the calming music...if I can get away with it.
Well, I am up to trying meditation and just finding as many ways as I can to leave the house. She seems to have no interest in my feelings, what I may be doing at the time and for years repeating worries(up to 4 weeks) as her sole conversation with me. It doesnt feel like selflessness. "Dinner is on the table!" I am on the phone. "Dinner is on the table." I know but I am on the phone. "Dinner is on the table" I havent had a pleasant dinner in five years.
sometimes I feel like someone dumped me into solitary confinement with a crazy person who drives me bonkers all day with no escape! I sure hope I don't do this to my kids!
Mom can no longer communicate with words except on occasion. I on the other hand am tired of hearing myself say "open your mouth", "take a bite", "sit up", etc., etc.
She has PD and late stage dementia. But the worst is her severe OCD that causes her to do things like grab anything within her reach. Or bang on her dish with her utensils. Took over feeding her because she drove us crazy banging on the dish and playing with the food instead of eating. She is so easily distracted that it can take up to an hour to feed her a meal and sometimes 10 minutes to get her to open her mouth for meds. So, I find myself repeating commands that she ignores or just can't focus on enough to follow. I would much rather hear her tell the same stories over and over, but those days are gone. When she does choose to speak and ramble on, the words don't make sense, so I just keep on knitting or whatever and answer her with uh-huh or really?, or you don't say! She is just happy that she is getting an answer and eventually moves on to something else. I find the rule of "redirecting attention" was very helpful early on in the disease. If she asked about my deceased dad, I would not remind her he had dies 30 years ago. I would just say he was at work and would be home soon. So next time you get the repeating, try a few generic answers, then CHANGE THE SUBJECT!!! Or focus them on something else like "would you like a snack?" or find something they can look at outside through a window. It gets easier after a bit of practice and it will save on your nerves. If that doesn't work, Step outside for a minute and breathe!!!!!

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