The New Normal. Getting used to mom's delusions.

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We can have some strange conversations in this house. I am starting to see them as a normal part of life.

Tonight my mother came in my room and asked if we still had insurance on the house. I told her yes. She seemed relieved and said, "So if lightning strikes the heater, then they will pay to replace it." I guaranteed her they would, but wondered why she was thinking about this.

She was about to leave, but turned to ask if they would help with all the cracks in the floor, that some of them were big enough to fit a dime through. She pointed at all the cracks in the floor. Of course, there are no cracks in the floor, but to her there are. We had the floor reinforced and lifted a few months ago, and since then she has imagined that there are spaces between all the boards. She doesn't understand how the floors are put together. I tried to explain, but it didn't help. She doesn't remember.

I just considered it might help to carpet the house. But that would be expensive and she would probably blame the new carpet for symptoms she experiences. Anytime workmen come into the house, she feels they do something to cause her to be ill. I need to do something, though, because she puts blankets and towels on the floor of her bedroom to cover all the cracks. I pick things up. She puts them back down. She thinks she is covering all the cracks in the floor, but all I see are trip hazards.

I may do best to get some large area rugs to cover all the cracks. That way I could install them and tape them in place, and there would be no workmen doing things that make her ill. And maybe she wouldn't be allergic to the rugs. And maybe she wouldn't think the cracks were still letting things in.

The strangest thing is that I am starting to see all of this as normal -- solving problems that don't even exist. I guess I am getting dotty myself.


Lol, it does seem odd to accept these conversations as normal, doesn't it? But it is the new normal in your house. And the problem you are trying to solve is very real indeed. You are trying to reduce Mom's anxiety and give her some comfort. The cracks in the floor are not real, but her anxiety over them is. I think a large (almost room size) area rug for her room is a great idea.
I find that repeating the same thing over and over again when I'
(stupid fingernails sorry) anyway, repeating myself over and over again has become my 'normal' don't think much about it anymore.
Nancy, I have the thought several times a day about why bothering to explain something when I know she won't remember it. That is one of the most annoying things. I try to be sympathetic both to her and to me. I do get tired of answering the almost daily question of how much money does she have. Each time now I just tell her she has enough to live on if she is able to stay in her home, but that it would be gone in no time if she has to go into a NH. That is honest and satisfies her.

There was a strange one yesterday. She asked me to go to the store for her. I did and when I got back, I gave her the package. She said, "You won't miss me when I'm dead." What does one say to that? You're welcome?
Perhaps one of cruelest things about dementia is that right at the time a person needs to deal with their mortality, it robs them of the ability to do it. It takes away the ability to enjoy the last bit of time on earth. And it pushes people away when they need to be drawing closer. Dementia is a cruel thing.
Its sweet that you are trying to ease her distress! Delusions are really hard to deal with -- you can't seem to reason them out of it. My mom was always very logical and had a mind like a steel trap ... but now she has reached the point that I cannot change her mind about things just using reason and logic. I hope it don't mean we're going crazy when we think dealing with craziness is normal! what you gotta do. My mom had some really off the wall comments that baffled me too. But that was before she was diagnosed. Now all those comments of the past 2 years I finally understand where they were coming from. It's all a part of the disease. My moms have subsided a little but she does wake up from sleep sometimes and has some goofy comment. Like the other days she woke up smiling. And says to me, "boy that baby is cute huh?"...I just said "Ya mom...he sure is!" Go with it ...because no matter what it's what they believe and there is no reasoning with them at all. As silly as it may sound sometimes, it's better to agree than to disagree. Right now I agree with the above. Crazy is the new normal. ;)
I am so glad I came across this discussion. A couple of years ago my mother started with the odd comments and questions and I was totally unprepared for that as she, too, has always been very logical and capable. Tonight she had a bunch of kids sleeping in her room and that was causing her great concern. Do their parents know where to find them? I woke them all up but should I let them sleep? I used to try reasoning and logic but finally learned that with dementia, there is no reasoning and logic, it just is what it is. I told her let the kids sleep, I already talked with their parents and everything is ok. A while later she came in and said there were no kids now. I have learned not to ask where did the kids go, I just answered OK. My siblings would be stunned to see her now....
KateAnne My Mother see's kids too!!! She only talks about the kids because they take her things.
My mom says she sees spirits. They look like real people and most are kids. I was shocked when she said this. I asked her how long this has been going on. She said for years. I asked her how come she never told anyone. She said she was afraid we'd think she was nuts. She never complained that anyone ever stole anything. The peopel/kids she saw were happy but looking for misplaced people in their lives. I really belive she sees spirits.

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