Is my 83 year old mother's dementia making her "meaner" in the way she is treating all of us? She is getting worse.

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Things here with mother are getting harder since her dementia and confusion are getting worse. She has always been rude and irritable with me, but she is now being "mean" to me mostly, but my husband, too. She usually wouldn't say anything rude to my husband, but now she is beginning to.

Mother can't stand to be anywhere without me. She is my shadow. If I come back to the bedroom to take my medicine and do some emailing, she is back here in 5-10 minutes asking why I don't come watch TV with her. If I go to the bathroom, she comes to the door and asks if I'm in there. Just things like that. All the time.

This morning, my husband and I came back to our bedroom to change clothes, medicine, email a minute and she comes to the door and calls my name. I said just a minute. When my husband comes out, she is in her bedroom doorway across from our bedroom (no privacy here) and says something rude to him. He just says that we are discussing husband and wife things. She flew off the handle and told us if we didn't like living there, just get out.

Then, she starts telling me how we free load off her. I reminded her we pay half the utilities and half the groceries and she told me I was lying.

What do you do? So, I shut up. When she said something rude, I said something nice about the weather, sitting outside to watch the birds, etc. Just ignored her mean-ness.

We have about had it living here. It is like this all the time. The nursing home is really looking good now. We moved up here to help them to keep them from moving into the nursing home. My step-dad ended having to go with his Alzheimer's. And, mother is just about to run us crazy.

I need some encourages words. Thanks so much.

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Top Answer
Its true - her dementia, plus maybe prior personality tendencies that used to be under more control, is the probable culprit. She's anxious as she doesn't remember things well, plus a little disinhibited so too quick to snap. But you might be able to show her bills you have paid on paper (my mom was helped by seeing her bank statements even though she could not really grasp the details) and maybe develop a system of routinely checking on her every 10 or even 5 minutes repeatedly, adn without her even calling to you, so she can get used to the idea that you step out, then you come back, and she does not have to feel insecure like you have left her for good...that one comment to your husband might have been sort of backwards fishing for reassurance that you won't leave her all alone and unable to take care of herself. You can bet that she does NOT realize that her comments are making you want to do just what she's really most likely afraid of! Her judgement and perspective are most likely just not that good.
Thank you for your help. That is a good idea to just step out and let her see me about every 5 or 10 minutes and say something to her. When I leave her alone for a few minutes, in her mind, she may think I'm not coming back. Dementia is so cruel how it makes a person think. When she gets her bank statement, I always ask her if she wants me to read it to her so she will know about her finances, but she picks it up and takes it to her bedroom. She can't see well at all, so she can't read it. But, I tell her that everytime. I will start showing her the deposit I make every month to pay on bills. That's a good idea to out loud tell her at the bank, I've just deposited the money. On the groceries, I have the check out person divide the grocery bill in half and she pays half and I pay half, so she sees that. You gave me some good ideas and good thoughts. Thanks so much. I need all the help I can get right now. We are really feeling so weary and tired of all this.
I've been there. My mother is 93 with dementia and living with my husband and I. What worked for me during this type of behavior was: 1) Don't try to explain or reason..she can't comprehend the logic. 2) Imagine how afraid and anxious she is knowing she is losing her mind and control of her life. It helped me be more patient. 3) Hire a sitter or beg a neighbor or someone to keep your mother company for an hour or so. 4) The adult day care services saved us. It gave us private time yet kept her at home and out of the nursing home. Finally, I look back with fond memories of the times mother followed me around the house wanting to "help". As time passed and the disease progressed, she became unable to complain or gripe or accuse or blame. She no longer can walk from room to room looking for me. So, "this too shall pass" fits this situation. My prayers are with you.
maybe you should consider putting your mom in assisted living try it teporaely she may need to be around people her age to get motivated and into activites, iknow this hard i was mymoms care giver for alittle over a year i was so burnt out he end of the summer i had to put her in nh she went itnot last life atages of senile demenstai she drove me crazy my mom died at 92 yrs old she was in a nh 3 weks was admitted permanenlty she couldnt walk and was agressive to me every one . she seemed to like being in a nusrsing home than living with me. she stopped eatting just neede alotof help. before things get out of hand try either assissted living or respite care you need a break. ididnt get any breaks at all i got so burned out . Don't let that happen to you or your husband. I wish you well take care of yourself
kjnurse, thank you for you sharing what worked with you. Those are the things we are looking for...things that worked for others...maybe they'll work for us. When we have someone come sit with mother, she gets so upset knowing we are leaving her with someone. Then, when we get back, she has some rude comments to make. It is just amazing to me. She does not want me to go anywhere without her or get out of her sight. We are going somewhere tomorrow and the sitter is coming. My stomach is in knots just thinking about it. I shouldn't be that way. We do have a daycare service here, but mother won't hear of going. I've been told just take her because she will gripe one way or the other. I might do that. Thanks again for your comments.

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