My husband has vascular dementia and is very aggressive. I'm afraid of him and have been unable to get any help from Social Services. How should I handle this?

I have had him to the ER once hoping tha they would put him in a geriatic pscyhiatric unit...but no place in the State of VA would take him because demential cannot be cured?

So the bottom line is that I am afraid of him. He is very healthy and can turn off his aggression when other people are around.

I have tried home health care, but he runs them off. I have tried to find a home, but cannot afford it and all of the demential care units have a waiting list of up to one year; I have applied for Medicaid....he was approved by the social worker for both home health and nuring home care. But I have not yet been approved for financial assistance.
I really wanted to try and keep him at home but I do not think I can continue to do this He is constantly in my face, threatening me, thinks I am seeing other "men" doesn't believe I go to work every day....on and on and on it goes....

Do I have options??? I am tired and scarced...

Answers 1 to 10 of 13
Hello - I'm so sorry to learn of your situation, it's got to be frustrating and I hope you don't feel hopeless. Although I have no personal experience with vascular dementia I do have friends who escaped violent relationships. Would it help to do something similar in this instance?

Can you contact your local police to see what's possible if he becomes violent toward you or others? Can you understand what's necessary - the minimum requirements - to obtain a restraining order? Can you move out until you're able to get him into a care center? Are there other family members who could stay with the both of you until there's an opening in a care center? Can he get anti-anxiety medications to reduce his anger?

Before doing anything though, it might be wise to see a family law attorney. I'm not suggesting divorce but if you do move out until space in a care center is available, what are your rights as his spouse? Does moving out automatically mean you're legally separated? Can you continue to make decisions and get information about his health condition and care options if you move out? If you are separated does that impact his or YOUR insurance coverage or his qualifications for state assistance?

In addition to state assistance there is are also VA programs. If he's a veteran he might qualify for care at a VA nursing home or clinic. My uncle had dementia and a violent temper, being in a VA home with other men seemed to have a calming effect on him. It's like he knew he was among other physically strong people so he behaved with more patience and self-control.

I hope you'll find some useful information in my rambling. Yours is such a stressful situation, I hope you can find some support group or family assistance to help you through this situation until you find an opening in a care center. Don't be afraid to dial 911 if you feel he'll injure you or someone else. If you're truly afraid it might also be wise to remove any guns, knives, sporting goods or other things that he could use to "defend" himself or injure others.

Best of luck and please keep us posted!!
See his physician by yourself and ask for some "cooling out" drugs that can reduce his explosiveness. And since he may not be willing to take them, see what is possible about adding them to his food.

Do you attend a support group? This would be a big help for you.
Couldn't we just call the cops or abandon him at the hospital? I can't get him to eat anything but sugar or ice-cream. If I try to stop a dangerous activity he clenches his fist and threatens me. He won't bathe and he will not keep his clothes on. Where are the county homes? The insane asylums? The padded rooms where he can pack three t'shirts on his legs without doing himself damage when he tips over... or my glasses for that matter?? A slightly stressed caregiver who has wonky glasses who couldn't possibly drive 20 miles to a 'group' leaving the demented one home alone..
Top Answer
since the original post is over 4 years old.. i'm gonna go with JL here. Call his Dr and tell him what is going on! There are things that can help with the agression. I am ALL about better living through pharmaceuticals! They would not want to be so out of control if they understood it, and we should not have to be afraid of them while taking care of them. It;s a catch 22, but you have rights and health needs also, and if you want to keep them home.. get help!
Thanks, I may call again.. they sent me to a social worker who is head of her department and only works 10 hours a week. Emergency doesn't want to see him even if it turns out to be a UTI... Dr. took him off life sustaining drugs like high blood pressure meds. and they gave up trying meds for the dementia. I have an oxy a day (If I dared leave him long enough to do the sign-for) and some sleep med that does not slow him down in the least.. I'm thinking of 911 'cause I am too tired to contemplate dragging him to a nursing home without ID and then running. He won't recall his name or mine so Id have a free hour or two before they track me down. Perhaps there's a sisters of mercy that will take him no questions asked? LOL It's been fun venting. JL
Who diagnosed his dementia? How long since he has seen that doctor or any other? Is this a recent change in mental status? Do you have POA or does someone else? Is he suddenly lucid when questioned by police, doctors, APS?

If I had one doc I would get him to, it would be a geriatric psychiatrist, who might be able to medicate some of his symptoms. However, if this can't be done, I'd get him on the waiting list for as many memory care units as you can. If he needs to be hospitalized, you DON'T take him home.

If the drugs his doctor precise aren't working and social services isn't working, call the doctor back in the AM. Is it time for Hospice (ask the doctor that) tell the doctor that you fear for your safety and his.

What resources do you have? Is he a candidate for memory care or NH?

And how about you; you sound defeated and depressed. Have you been to YOUR lately? (((Hugs))))) and sorry for so many questions!
He's 73 and has been ill with one emergency after another for the last 6 years... even had constricted colon two years in a row. I was of the opinion all that anesthesia caused the dementia, but it may also have obscured it. I kept begging them not to send him home with me but let there be nursing home observation for a time. Dr. recently signed off on dementia, I have all powers though it also gives me responsibility too. I've been scrambling to get all in order, but he deteriorates faster than I can cope. PS he's rearranging the kitchen. I only removed knives 2 days ago. Good thing he's on that sugar and ice-cream diet....
When the resources are unhelpful like this, I start a paper trail. I get a notebook (whatever you have around the house) and I write down first and last names, department names, phone numbers and quote them on what you were told. Tell them you are doing that so that when the S hits the fan, you will have a clear record of your attempt to get help. It's amazing how keeping careful book on state workers can perk them up to actually being helpful. And this documentation should include what your doctor/staff/therapist tells you. Tell them you are documenting. Have a friend, if you have any left, photograph your documentation, or photocopy it and keep it at their house. If your husb finds the booklet and throws it away, just start anew. Get any guns out of the house. Sleep in your own room. Have a deadbolt put on the door. Don't doze elsewhere in the house. Tell the kids/inlaws you are going on vacation for a few days and he's all theirs. Hope some of these ideas help.
Just saw your second. I have chronic fatigue and will sometimes shut myself in a room until he settles down... then I go clean up. If he crashes, I do rush out to pick up the pieces. He walked into the edge of a door the other day and pulled it away from the wall. Did some damage to his ear that I treated myself, the emergency DR actually told me I was too anxious a care giver when he put some unknown drops into his eye (probably for ears?) I have my mom in a nursing home but we are too low on funds to get him in.... for more than 3 months.

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