Stress overload with 83 year old grandmother.

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This is the hardest job I have ever done! Its not even a year yet...2 more months for that. Im 30 with 2 kids and a husband and we take care of my grandmother. She gets around fine but can drive you absolutely insane at times. I gave her a memory test because I suspected starting of Alzheimer's and she failed. She didn't remember all the words then a week later she passed? She can be fine one second and the next second scream at you because she don't like turkey lunch meat (she does). Or the kids didn't say good morning or the hair dresser took too long. I guess I just don't understand this memory thing. I let her pay her bills and she does fine with it but as for remembering certain stuff its sometimes impossible, Our yard was damaged by a home city ice truck and it was a month. She said a year. Its little things adding up to make me wonder what is going on with her. At times its ok but recently with me going back to work I am a nervous wreck. There has been alot happen in the almost year and I need to work and no one helps with her or checks on her. There is no one! Just me...I feel it wearing on me. Im a happy positive person and lately I feel tired and just blah. Maybe this vent will help. I love her dearly and would do anything for her but she is driving me batty! This is the hardest job in the world! I think she is going to out live me!


Palmerkey, you sound just like me. I could have written the same message, though I am 61 instead of 30. I have been a caregiver for my mother for 4 years. I have known all along that she had dementia. Her reasoning was off, her abilities were limited, and her memory came and went. She confabulated a lot. Her new doctor finally diagnosed dementia the week before last. She asked me if I had noticed anything. I told her that, yes, I had known it for years. I didn't add that I thought her former doctor just didn't want to diagnose her. I can understand him not wanting to. I've noticed that my mother has gone downhill since the dementia diagnosis. I wonder if it is coincidental or if there was psychological impact -- maybe a bit of both?
I need to make an appointment with her doctor me and her. I am POA on everything so they would allow this right? She is so strong minded and if she dont want to she isnt. So she could possibly have it? Its so overwhelming and with kids it worse. I feel like I have 3 kids! Really!! And did the doctor say she was at a certain stage of dementia? Its a sad disease and I always promised not to send her to a home. But were not to that point yet so I wont stress over the unknown yet. And she wont go anywhere except to her hair appointment. She quit going to church and also stopped seeing her friends from school once a month. I took her one time but then she didn't want to go back...
My mother was diagnosed with dementia, but no type was given. The doctor just said short-term memory loss that would progress. I know from the things my mother does that she is between Stage 4 and 5. What we are hoping is that her mind holds out as long as her body does. She acted like she was in Stage 4 for all these years, but the picture was complicated with misuse of Ativan. Her medication use is managed now, so the true picture of what is going on is easier to see.

Could your gma have dementia? Maybe. Some say all old people get it to one degree or another. My father had mixed dementia. He was able to function mentally up until the time of his death. He didn't like to bathe or get out of the house, but he didn't show the other symptoms that we associate with dementia (e.g., sundowning, wandering). He was just a quiet man who sat in the same chair all day long and went to bed very early, rarely interacting with anyone. (He was on the "autism spectrum," so we didn't even notice he had dementia. It blended in.) Dementia does not always have to be catastrophic. It is all in how it progresses.

I wish all people that got dementia would go the route where they are totally content with life and loving to everyone around. I have seen that for two people. If everyone were like that, we might all want to get dementia. :)
Why not get home care to come in while Your at work. Contact your local Elder affairs and see about daycare.. There are options available to help when you aren't there.. Good luck...
Palmerky the best advice I could give you is to go to Youtube and search for Teepa Snow videos. Start watching them - she's talking about Alzheimers and how to deal with folks with it. They're excellent! Bookluvr mentioned them in another thread. One thing Teepa says is to never promise not to put someone in a facility. That may be a promise you can't keep. Your grandmother may get to a point that she requires 24/7 care that you're simply not equipped to give her. As I've read in other threads, that's why hospitals have shifts. One person can't handle it all. Get what help you can for your grandmother now, but realize that this is a long road and you can only do what you can do. Good luck!

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