Why is my mom washing her clothes in the tub instead of letting me wash them in the washing machine?

My mom is not putting her clothes in the hamper for me to launder anymore. She has been washing them out I guess in her tub by hand. Anyone have any idea why someone with middle stages of dementia would start doing this for no reason. I told her that the dish detergent or shampoo she was using would give her an infection but she still does not listen and is still washing by hand. I bought her some cold water detergent like woolite yesterday since I can't get her to let me do the laundry. She lives with me and I keep going upstairs to get her laundry and there is none. Is it ok to just let her wash them by hand or should I do something?. She can no longer remember how to use the washing machine and I think that is part of the problem and she does not want to add more to my plate...

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Expert Answer
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I think you are right - she can't remember how to use the washing machine, and she wants to independence to do her wash. I don't see that it hurts anything if it makes her feel better. This phase will move into something else. She gets some satisfaction, bless her. Unless you see something that's bad for her in it, I'd just tell her thank you.
Try to take care of yourself, too,
Thanks Carol. Boy this is hard to watch them leave us a little more each day. It breaks my heart.....
My mother does something similar. She tells me she washed things out by hand even though everything gets hung back up or placed in a drawer (underwear) even after wearing and dirty. I go through the drawers and closet and get the things I can either see are dirty or anything I know she wore recently. Try the sneaky approach when she is in another room or not looking. Sometimes you have to distract her first or say you are getting them to sew a button back on, but this has worked for me.

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