How do I give my mom some time alone without actually leaving her alone?


Don't know from day to day what I will be hit with - the sweet Mom that will cooperate fairly well or the uncharacteristic cussing and nasty Mom. Yesterday she hugged me and said it was so nice to get along and this morning she cussed at me.

She refused to change her socks and Depends this morning (she did understand what I was asking) saying the doctor said she could wear them for a week. She said she wanted to go to the "hospital" (that's what she calls a nursing home) because they wouldn't make her do that. I've learned to remain calm because it only gets worse if I try to convince her. I just told her that she would have to stay in her room until she agreed to change them and then closed her door. About 30 minutes later, she started to come out and I told her she would have to change first. She had changed her socks so I told her the Depends had to be changed also and she did it although she was not happy with me.

Since then, I fixed her a snack and lunch as usual but left her alone to eat them. Kind of like a time out because I'm thinking it might be better for both of us. I'm here if anything is needed, just in another room. Is this a reasonable way to handle the situation?

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I think you really hit on a good thing and it worked fine and you will be a good example for others I know how hard it is to have them be so nasty but at least she can be nice some parents are always nasty -my Mom is 91 and it is too late to change her I should have done it when I was a kid -I was the one she was hardest on growing up and I am still the one she takes her venom out on-this last visit I was able not to cry over the way she treated me-and she is so sweet to outsiders-my late husband was the same-people still tell me what a great person he was-so nice and all-but not to me, they do not get better with age.
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Didn't get any responses but it did work. I was here in the house the entire day with her but not in the same room so she was "alone". Most days we go for a drive, a walk, work puzzles, eat together, etc., so being on her own was very unusual. By late afternoon she came to me and asked if I was okay. I told her I was doing fine but how was she doing. She said, "Better now, I didn't do so well this morning." She went on to say that she didn't know why she acted that way. I told her everything was fine and we had a good evening and only the start of a tussle the next morning when it was time to change her Depends again.
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