Mom has been declining mentally for a few years.

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Mom has been declining mentally for a few years. She lived 15 hours away from us. Nothing concerning as to her taking care of herself, and definitely not consistent. Little things like hording silly things like craft supplies, mail, garbanzo beans etc... 2 years ago, she got the flu and pneumonia , and wasn't getting the care she needed at her assisted living facility when she was released from the hospital. We moved her to our home, where she received pt and ot. 3 months later, she fell coming out of the shower and broke her hip. I helped her in and out of the shower, but that time, she took it upon herself to get out on her own (I can do it myself). 3 months of rehab, and she moved back into our home. She wouldn't do her exercises (I know my body best/I'm too weak), and never fully recovered. UTI after UTI, diabetes issues, not following dr, pt or ot advice. She almost fell in the kitchen (I don't need my walker), and my husband tried to catch her, spilling his coke on her. She joked that he threw it at her (more about this later), which is the 'old mom' personality. Fast forward a year, and her personality, which had waxed and waned from pleasant, grateful and fun, turned to hateful, accusing and downright mean. We hired nurse after nurse to be with her and help her during the day, making sure she ate, took her insulin and was being safe. None of them satisfied her, something was wrong with each of them: one was lazy, one kept "looking at her", one's boobs were too big (I sh*t you not). All were perfectly qualified, and professional. After a few months of mom being on her own, she had many minor falls, and became increasingly difficult (to me, not to others). She wouldn't come out of her room for days, and didn't want to be around me, yet wanted me to wait on her hand and foot. She was able to get up and walk with a walker, she just didn't want to. We decided that for all involved, it would be better for her to move to an assisted living facility, close to our home. She didn't resist, and agreed it would be better, yet tells everyone that I "put her in the home". It took a couple of months, but she adjusted well, made friends, and was socially active with the residents. Last week... she'd been sick with a stomach bug, and went to the Dr. Lied through her teeth to him about managing her diabetes (it's none of his business), eating and general self care. They ran tests, and the Dr called to let us know to take her to the ER, her blood sugar was over 600 (!). At the ER, she was soooo nice. To me. To the staff. To anyone who would listen to her. Funny/not funny, I knew she must be sick. They admitted her and immediately were concerned about her mental state. UTI accounted for some of it, as well as high blood sugar (we're used to low, not high), I'm sure, but this was ... more. Couldn't remember where she lived, what state she was in, why she was in the hospital etc... Today, she seemed much better after a few rounds of iv antibiotics. Memory coming around, half way pleasant, fussing, but in a normal, for her, way. Then the charge nurse asked to talk to me in private. Mom told her that I had pushed her out of the shower, and that's how she broke her hip. Also that my husband had thrown a coke can at her and that's how she fell in the kitchen. o_O I tried to explain that wasn't what happened, probably making me look guilty, but this could affect our livelihood, not to mention not being able to take care of her in the future. When I spoke to her, she was fine... until I asked her not to be telling people that we pushed her, or threw things at her, even if she's trying to be funny. That unleashed the beast. Screaming at me: they don't have the right to tell me things. They're abusing her rights as a patient. She's going to check herself out of the hospital. The nurses are being mean to her. They refused to put cream on her "hot butt" (I was there when she asked, and they obliged her, nicely), she refused the pt that she asked for the day before, getting belligerent with the therapist... I ended up hanging up on her. :( A few minutes later, she called back, sobbing that she was sorry. A part of me thinks part of it is an act, and part of it is the disease. She's always had issues with being honest with us (tells me one thing, my sister another). The hateful, everyone is out to get her, forgetful part is getting more and more. I don't know what to do. She (like others I've read here) can fool most people. I get the fact that she knows that I won't leave her, so she can be mean and know I won't leave. I get that. It still hurts. It hurts to hear her be mean to me, to my sister. It infuriates me that she's telling people that we in essence, abused her. It embarrasses me when she is blatantly and loudly mean/racist/hurtful to people that don't deserve it. I'm exhausted. Mentally and physically.

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Well. The next time the nurse tells you that mother says you pushed her out of the shower and your husband keeps hurling Coke cans at her, you'll be able to tell the nurse that mother says they're denying her her patient's rights and failing to provide basic nursing care. What's sauce for the goose...

Seriously, it will now be a matter of record that your mother is volatile, unreliable and sometimes verbally abusive. Which in a way takes some of the pressure off you. So that's something.

I only wish I could suggest where you can possibly go from here. I'm so sorry you're having to go through this, and I'm sorry for whatever on earth is going on in your mother's mind.

Any chance of a psychiatric assessment for her? I just can't think of anything else that you don't already seem to be doing.
What was mom like when she was "normal" and not aging?

Has she always had issues with telling the truth, being manipulative, having to do things her way? Any suspicion that she may have been mentally ill ( or at the very least, suffering from a personality disorder) for most of her life?

I would endorse having a geriatric psychiattist pay her a visit in the hospital. Hands down, the best advice we've gotten regarding my elderly mom's care has been from geriatric psychiatrists. Meds may ease some of her anxiety and agitation.

I want to add, when my husband's mom told him that she was going to report him for "elder abuse" ( he told her one too many times that if she stopped smoking, her copd wouldn't be such a big problem), he walked out of her apartment and never looked back.

She was apparently a lifelong "my way or the highway" thinker and he didn't feel he could risk the legal entanglements.

He didn't threaten to walk away. He just did it.
thank you both so much. Not being alone is comforting.

When she was living @ independent living, my sister talked her into going to see a geriatric psychiatrist. She went once, stating that her life was no ones business but her own. Sigh.

She's (in hindsight) had signs of depression, and her old dr stated that she may have an adjustment disorder. Think so doc? She went through a rough divorce 10 years ago and hasn't gotten over it. Trust is a big issue for her since then, although it is manifesting itself in sometimes the opposite way you'd think.

She's on Effexor, but she's been on it for probably 7 or 8 years. Doc told her it was to help her think straight. At this point, I'm okay with that explanation. I try to talk to her current dr, but she puts on the "show", and seems perfectly normal and adjusted.


What's good for the goose ends up in a fussing fit that I choose not to go to....this time anyway.

I would love to be of help to you and pass on pearls of wisdom but I won't be around to help. I am probably going to jail tomorrow. Yep, we have two new caregivers on board... a new audience if you will. And Mom has gained just enough mental capacity to resume playing games. Tonight she whispered to me that she knows I am trying to kill her. Tomorrow, she will tell her caregivers.

OK, not really worried about going to jail but I do know where you are coming from. The last time Mom played such games, I vowed that the next time she "reported me" it would be her last night in my house.

Instead Inhale decided to place my faith in my caregivers. I will give them a heads up and then just hope that they don't turn me in to APS.

I understand that it is the dementia talking but my advice is that if she has always been manipulative and attention seeking (like my mother), don't put your family at risk of false accusations. If her behavior cannot be controlled by meds, leave her to someone who is able to provide a higher level of care. And, in the mean time, document everything in case you find that you have to defend yourself.

Www.gofundme/Maria's bail money (just kidding)
*snork* get your own bail money. I've had pickle jar I've added to since she moved here. meh, maybe we'll be bunk mates. 3 squares a day and free medical care? Maybe MOM should be placed there??? hmmmm????

She called back in tears, apologizing, doesn't know why she does that, doesn't want us to lose our jobs... deep breath, forgive and move on. lather rinse repeat.

She lives at an assisted living facility now, and they have a few memory patients, but not really qualified to care for dementia patients. They and the dr's have been good about noting personality changes. It's just the nurses at the hospital don't know her or me.

I'll wait out this latest episode (what a great sitcom) , see how it turns out once she's UTI free, going potty on her own, and sent back to her place.

My PCP kept diagnosing my symptoms as "anxiety," until finally I went to an ER. I fully expected to wind up in the psychiatric ward, as did my family. We were all thrilled to find out that I "only" had diabetes! So I can tell you from experience that blood sugar over 600 can produce some very strange behaviors. I have seen my mother with a UTI. That too can cause weird symptoms. Both of them together? OMG! Your poor mother!

So it makes sense to me to wait until she is fully recovered from these assaults on her body to decide if any changes might be called for.

You say her ALF isn't particularly skilled at dealing with mental health issues. Are you confident about their skills for dealing with general health issues?

Do you think she might now need a higher level of care? In a nursing home, for example, her diabetes would be monitored. People can get UTIs anywhere -- home, ALF, nursing home -- anywhere. But a nursing home would most likely be able to diagnose it and treat it on site. Hospitalizations tend to be very hard on the elderly, and especially hard on those with mental health issues.

Let's hope that things settle down when Mom is physically recovered. Keep an eye on things. And keep your sense of humor!

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