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She was so sweet and quiet during most of the Christmas eve activities...she was surprised that she had a stack of gifts in front of her. She says with surprise, " Are all these for me?" and after she opened them all she said "Thank you!" I really think she was enjoying herself. The kids were excited and she watched them open their gifts. But after a bit she wanted to go lay down. So after a couple hours of a nap..she wakes up...yelling at us "oh shut up will you!" She must have said this about 6 times...I finally said to her "Mom stop that its really rude to tell people to shut up!" She was quiet after that. But this is not the way my mom would ever act. So I know its part of the dementia. So I was wondering if any of you have similar experiences after a big event such as, Christmas?

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Last yr as in in previous yrs, we made a big deal celebrating my Mom's Bday and Mom and Dad's Anniversary on the 23rd of Dec. Christmas morning I get a phone call from the Nursing Home that Mom's blood pressure was very low and she was unresponsive. Guess where Mom and I spent Christmas Day?? in the E.R. Mind you, while in the ambulance, Mom became chatty with the medical attendants, very concious in the E.R. and only complained of her usual leg pains. They were going to release her Christmas Day but Mom insisted that they keep her over night for observation...they kept her 3 days and 3 long nights...sundowning kicked in pretty bad.

I say all this to say, this yr very little was mentioned about Mom's bday, their Anniversary and Christmas Day tho we did acknowledege those days. It was kind of sad because my Mom has always made this time of yr a big deal, this yr she could hardly care less and I followed her lead. No worries, no anxiety, no complaints, NO E.R. visits.

Once I learned to just go with the flow...the days flow easier. It's different for sure but it is what it is.
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My Mother and Father in law were very negative regarding Christmas . They refused to go to a family celebration on the 23rd and on the 24th family visited them . Christmas day came and it snowed so no one was able to get out and they complained they had no family or friends and what a miserable Christmas it was .. The negative attitude is hard to be around and it is always a gamble to know what kind words will set them off. HELP
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Yes, I understand but have no solutions as to how to deal with this. My mother-in-law did the similar things and that is not her personality. She got so upset, she got a "nervous" stomach and had to have her diaper changed several times. I think that it was just too much for her. She has been especially weaker, both physically and mentally, since. I am hoping she gets back some of her moments of being lucid soon.
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When mom was going thru this stage, it was always with all gatherings that involved lots of people and Noise. She would have this confused look if too many people were talking to her and if talking too fast. But, she would get visibly agitated and angry if the noise level was high - like the TV is blaring, and everyone is trying to talk louder than the TV and laughing and jovial arguing. And the kids - as long as they were calm - mom had no problems with them. But, have a kid cry and scream their heads off - she got agitated. Same if the kids were too active, excitable. We all took it in our stride and just have to remind ourselves to lower our voices. At this stage, mom could no longer talk. So, we learned her moods thru body language. Even had my 4yr old niece (visiting from the states) learn how to dodge mom's hands. Mom grabbed her, and squeezed her arm so hard. I had to use both of my hands to peel off mom's one hand. After I released her, I gently explained to niece how we played "IT" today? Well, with grandma, you have to watch her hand and make sure she doesn't grab you. And it worked. That girl would walk calmly past mom and when mom's hand would dart out to grab her, niece just calmly dodged it as if it was nothing. I tell you, kids are very fast learners. I wonder how many of your kids and grandkids have learned from your parents' cussings??? =)
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My mother-in-law waited until today to fall apart. It was my 27 year old son who put things in perspective. He reminded me that one can't rationalize with someone who has dementia but to attempt to soothe then walk away. Don't allow yourself to be sucked into the unhappiness.
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My mom stayed with me from Christmas Eve until the day after Christmas. She was fine until all the family came on Wednesday. She was very quiet. We opened gifts and everything seemed fine. Then, she told my brother he was going to take her home (meaning her real home, not the ALF). When he told her wouldn't take her home, she became angry, hostile and verbally abusive. It pretty much put a damper on the day for my brother and me.
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Gma had loved gifting to others all her life.
As she aged, and dementia set in, it was increasingly hard for her to handle the reversal in that dynamic.
She devolved into looking for something she could get by the case and give each person the same thing--like jam, etc.
Then she finally just gave up on trying to gift, or even do cards.
She finally had a hard time participating in family gatherings...my folk's house was a tri-level; the only bathrooms were on the second level--difficult to manage getting to it from the main living area, too.
She gradually just kept to her room, with it's on-suite bathroom in easier range, as well as the quiet.
Mom, OTH, gave up doing presents long ago, unless she found some special item; gave up trying to make the date deadlines for holidays though....
Mostly, makes collages, if/when she feels guilty about something, or wants to guilt someone else, veiled in "sweetness and light".
She's gotten more complicated over the years, but there is still some bits of her better self in there somewhere.
She usually never came out of her room much; at holidays, it got harder and harder to get her to come out, even to sit with us at the table.
We started taking dinners to her, but she usually chose to eat whatever she wanted from the food she stashed in her room.
She isolated herself extremely, and tried very hard to make it someone else's fault--that was her brain injuries, mental / dementia issues talking--because she used to be ALL about doing Christmas and holidays, making them special for kids.
==Quiet, routine, "safe zone" of familiarity, make getting thru holidays easier, for those with dementias and other ills that affect behaviors & ability to understand.
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My Dad just kind of ignored the whole thing and slept through most of Christmas day, except when we went across the street to the neighbors' house for dinner, which he managed ok. I think he'd rather forget about it, that the memories of Christmas past with my mother are too painful. They were married the day after Christms, 64 years ago, and she's been dead now for 8 years.
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My father-in-law can get quite agitated when there is loud music or loud and excited voices within earshot. I think Nancy7 had a good answer to this problem. She needs some quiet time and redirection. Also, I know that my father-in-law loves(d) me before the alzheimer dementia worsened over time. he can be very sweet and then turn around with his fist to tell me that I'm going to hell and that I'm an evil person. I know it's the disease. You really can't take it personally. He has 0.25 mg of xanax crushed into a little apple sauce if he gets combative. this helps to calm him, especially during the twilight hours (sundowning affect). He has a stronger sedative in liquid drop form if needed but so far he hasn't required it. Good Luck and remember to take care of yourself too.
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My mom is 82 with PD and dementia, after Christmas, she didn't want to go back to her apartment. She says she doesn't want to be with there with all those old women. No one else lives there. She seems more disoriented than ever, so we sped up the process of moving in with me and the family. I'm so anxious and afraid I won't be able to swing this,mi work full time and its shift work. She has a caregiver for 4 hours a day mon thru fri. Hopefully thr caregiver won't tire of driving to my house which is only 7 miles each way. I'm just really scared of it all.
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The increased visual and auditory stimulation that come with heightened activities, typically seen in large family get togethers such Christmas, Thanksgiving, birthdays or graduation, etc. can easily lead to outbursts from the person with dementia. Their brain cannot process the noise, lights, movement, etc., and the response is agitation. The world around them is moving too fast for their damaged brains to process.
It can be difficult to realize that your loved one can no longer tolerate long and loud family events. Try instead to recognize signs he or she is getting agitated and have a quiet room for them to go to. It can be difficult, but understand shorter visits typically work better as the disease progresses. If your loved one is in a community, taking them out for the holiday can be too challenging for them, so your family may have to plan to have a celebration there instead.
Medications may be used, but remember these can increase fall risks.
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The increased visual and auditory stimulation that come with heightened activities, typically seen in large family get togethers such Christmas, Thanksgiving, birthdays or graduation, etc. can easily lead to outbursts from the person with dementia. Their brain cannot process the noise, lights, movement, etc., and the response is agitation. The world around them is moving too fast for their damaged brains to process.
It can be difficult to realize that your loved one can no longer tolerate long and loud family events. Try instead to recognize signs he or she is getting agitated and have a quiet room for them to go to. It can be difficult, but understand shorter visits typically work better as the disease progresses. If your loved one is in a community, taking them out for the holiday can be too challenging for them, so your family may have to plan to have a celebration there instead.
Medications may be used, but remember these can increase fall risks.
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Anything oout of the ordinary routine for someone with late stage dementia is very disorienting for them. Their world is very small where they feel safe and comfortable. Does this mean you eclude them-no. You want the memories of good times not just the bad ones. Concentrate on the look on her face when she said "are these all for me" and forgive the outburst. the outburst is the disease-the look of happiness is your Mom.
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My mom refused to come over for dinner on Christmas. My sister was going to bring her over as she always does. I think with Alz, she can't follow our conversations anymore and I am not sure she understood it was Christmas. Her agitation has been high since, convinced she is going to be put in prison. I stayed at her house all of 5 minutes yesterday because of her accusing me of writing checks to myself and messing up her paperwork. If I stayed longer, we would have ended up yelling at each other which serves no purpose of either of us. Then she calls me later in the day as though nothing happened and wants me to take her grocery shopping. I wish I could get my mom to go to the dr. maybe an antidepressant would help relieve her anxiety.
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My mother does not have dementia, but she came home from the SNF a week prior to Christmas and has not been handling the "hussle & bussle" of the holidays very well this year....at all. My children & grandsons are over here quite often, and she is of the "children should be seen & not heard" generation and she was very snappy with them. I have told her countless times that if she is going to live here, that she needs to lighten up on the kids - I did not raise mine the way she raised us and I will NOT tolerate her yelling at them for simply playing - especially when they are excited on Christmas morning. When my son was leaving, she asked him if he was going to the big family gathering this weekend - he said "no, I have to work, but Travis (my grandson) will be there." - her response? "Oh THAT will make my day...." (in a really nasty tone) I couldn't believe those words came out of her mouth!!! I apologized to him and when I closed the door, I said to her "You know what, Mom - that was really rude of you - you owe him an apology" - she looked at me like "oh - did i say that out loud???" (((shaking my head)))
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My mom comes and goes between sweet and horrid. I think you just have to roll with the punches and make sure others, esp children, understand that her personality has changed since she was a younger woman. People understand.
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The Christmas spirit in our home fell to zero! This is my favorite time of year and my mother made it miserable for everyone! She has been in our home a little over a year now and my hubby blew up last night. My mother makes negative comments all day everyday and we have been ignoring it, but he went into a fit of rage! It was rather scary and I thought he was going to do something we all would regret. My mother kept saying things to him as if she wanted him to strike her so that the police would come. She kept saying "I want the police to come and lock you all up" she is so mean and ugly right now that I really need to find somewhere VERY SOON for her to go to. I need help and don't know where to turn or how to fix this. I pray for guidance and peace.
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Our daughter and son in law came on Christmas morning and as we were opening presents and laughing and talking, my husband had received a new jacket, and Mom was opening presents and she said, "Well, what is this, Donald's (my husband) birthday?? It just kind of zapped all of our Christmas spirit because she wasn't interested in any of her gifts or anything. So needless to say, Christmas was not a joyful time around our house this year. So sad!!
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My mom is in a memory unit.....for the first month they asked us not to take her out even for Christmas....they said that often people with Alzheimers or confusion will often seem to enjoy getting together with family and friends but what they see..... is after all the activity and family are gone...they will see behavoirs decline...Blessings to you....
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During the holidays or any type of celebration with others, Alz. patients tend to become agitated. It is believed to be too much stimulation and the noise level might be too high. I would suggest that a family member is designated to take a loved one away to a quiet place during the gathering. Perhaps another family member can relieve the other, etc. It is really the disease and they ( the loved one) cannot process what is going on around them, therefore, they become agitated.
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When we had upcoming holiday activities like church and visits to friends, Mom complained she was too sick to go (she had a cold and her stomach hurt). I reassured her we had plenty of time to get ready, no rushing needed and then I gave her a dose of anxiety medication and she was fine. She has been extremely tired since Christmas though. Heck, I'M tired with having everyone in the house all week and I'm half her age! I think it depresses her when she thinks about how much she used to do for us at Christmas and now I do everything for her.
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I can relate on a slight level. My mom does not have dementia, however, I think that her lack of independence and pain just escalates her frustrations during christmas. It happens every year like clockwork. She doesn't talk much, never smiles or looks at guests (or us) in the eyes .... acts surprised yet unpleasant when she gets a gift.... It's really hard....I am grateful that we are able to share holidays together, yet I feel she isn't, so I have to just ignore her because if I feed into it, it can turn into an argument which isn't necessary. I hope you and the kids had a nice Christmas. Thanks for reading!
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I know with my Mom, she dreads the company, it makes her nervous. The holidays, birthdays etc. when she always looked forward to this. I think too much activity and too many people sometimes can get people with Alz/Dementia confused and all worked up too the extent they get anxious and nervous. We usually give Mom an Ativan Rx from the Dr!!
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What I am observing is that the outbursts might require medication; my mom was at xmas even festivities with alot of people and noise and has never made any rude outbursts....she simply says let's go, "come 'on." outbursts are controlled with medications...it doesn't feel good to them to get so angry and frustrated. Your loved one needs some help medically, something mild of course to begin.
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My kids were excited as well, and he got annoyed, telling them to shut up and calm down. I told him it was Christmas and it was ok for them to have fun, even if they were a bit noisy. He was quiet after that. This morning he spent playing with his presents.
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