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Mom is worried about everything the last couple of days - mostly irrational thinking. I can't seem to reassure her or get her mind on other things. She also suffers from hallucinations, especially at night, and I am no longer able to convince her that they are not real.

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What this trainer would say, is to draw out of her what she's feeling underneath. "You're worried about Sadie?" (if she names someone she sees and it's disturbing to her) "Tell me about Sadie." If she would say she needs to cook for, or otherwise care for that person, you simply lie. "Well, so-and-so called and said they were bringing dinner to her, so you're off the hook this time! Let's go see if there is some of that pie left..." Or.... "It's okay , they said they couldn't stay long. They should be gone shortly. They have dinner waiting at their home."

The trainer also had us role play and commend the person for their concern. "Sounds like you really care for Sadie. She's so lucky to have you for a cousin"
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I've often thought of joining her delusions, however, most of the time she sees people she knows and is upset because they won't talk to her. It's usually "the kids" one of which is her great-granddaughter who she adores. She can't always tell me who the others are, I think other family members when they were children. Anyway, sometimes its completely enjoyable for her; others she's afraid because she thinks she has to care for them. I'm grateful that her delusions aren't menacing to her but haven't figured out a way to handle these other than to reassure her that they are being taken care of or that they aren't real.
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Sorry you have to go through this. My only suggestion comes from training I received on Dementia. You must not try to convince her the hallucinations are not real, only assure her you will see her through whatever it is she is experiencing. I was working Dispatch late one full-moon night, and one of our sweet State Troopers chased "polar bears" away from a street light with his night stick, to comfort a dilusional man. It worked. Rather than argue, he simply stepped in and protected the man from the danger he perceived. I would possibly suggest joining her in the dilusion, and creating a solution for it. Of course, I have NO idea what she's imaginging, so this may not be practical. May you have strength and patience for this path!

Ruth
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