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Anyone else got any ideas on how to deal with parent with dementia muttering under her breath. For the most part I ignore it, but it can be very vexing at times. Especially when I have knocked myself out taking care of all of her needs and wants all day. Sometimes she curses me and it bothers me, when I ask her why she has to do this, which is know is fruitless, she says she is saying her prayers. This is the kinda of stuff that does not make me feel too good.

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I am glad I found this site. So much of what I read here is the very things I experience and I don't feel alone or that I am the awful person I think I am. Yes...it is VERY hard to deal with a parent (in my case, mother) who exhibits these behaviors. Mine, like others here, mutters out loud through the day. Often, it is negative things and things about me in response to what I say to her. I do have to breathe and try to remember that it is not her fault. I used to take it very personally. Now I have learned to let it slide. As her dementia progresses and new challenging behaviors show up, I adjust myself again. Hardest job I've ever had.
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Very often a dementia patient will reach a point where home care is not suitable. BS0213, it sounds to me like your MIL may have reached this point. Sad as it is, it may be best for all concerned to consider placing her in a suitable care center.
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I'm sorry, that last post was for BS0123. Tonight I can't keep my posts straight.
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I have been thinking about this today. Funny, how often we think about someone else's issues. Maybe it helps take our minds off our own. Anyway, the fact that she does not fight your husband tells me, that to some degree, she is able to control the temper tantrums. That means she should be able to stop doing it. Maybe she can't completely let go of the anger, but she can release it in such a way as to not hurt others. My grandmother used to scream like a banshee at my mother (her daughter). She adored my father, her SIL. He could do no wrong. Whenever my father was around, she was sweet as could be to my mother. One day she made the mistake of screaming at my mother while my father was within hearing distance. He walked into the room with them, looked at my grandmother & told her if she ever talked to my mother like that again they would never come back. She never screamed at my mother again. Maybe it is time for your husband to have that talk with his mother. She should not be hurting you or anyone else.
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You know, it is the strangest thing that you mentioned how your MIL won't hit your husband but will hit others. My husband has a way with his mom too. She tends to listen to him better even now when she barely comprehends what is going on. Strange, huh? I wonder why that is? I'm glad you get help. Lord knows, we definately need it! :)
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Hi AZ yes he does help change her, he takes over in the evenings and the weekends but funny thing is my MIL won't dare hit him! And she is on meds all of the above and still combative, I even go in and give her the anxiety meds about 45 to an hr before we even start but she's still vicious. An my husbands been in the room when she's hit me but like I said he thinks its funny or doesn't say anything. I know one of the caregivers I have even told her boss about my MIL. She said she's the only patient that's like this. This kind of thing messes with your head because my own mom didn't abusive me like this. I'm trying hard not to go out of my mind. Thanks for all the support from all! Xoxox
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I wonder if you put on music she recognizes when she starts muttering if it would reset her mind. At the very least, you could sing along to the music so you did not hear her muttering.
BS0213, Talk to your MIL's doctor & tell him about the fighting. There might be something that can be done. You and the other caregivers could get hurt, unneccesarily, when she is fighting you.
Bless you all.
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BS0213,
Has your husband had to change his mom? It puts things into a whole other perspective when someone actually has to do it themselves. I get my husband to help me with my MIL when it comes time to change her. I figure, it's his mom, so he should be helping with her anyway. My MIL used to fight us too when we had to change or bathe her. We got her put on ativan for the anxiety, and we also make sure whenever possible that she is on her pain meds before we have to mess with her to change her. The meds help a lot. I may be mean to suggest this, but the next time your husband laughs about it insist that he change his mom next time, and he may see what you are talking about with how frustrating dealing with a combative person is. I personally used to have a lot more patience and used to take on the responsibilites mostly myself, but one day I said "enough is enough" and basically went off on my husband because he wasn't being supportive. He ended up helping more after that. We have caregivers that come in once and a while too for help, but I believe that if it is his mom who is sick that he should be helping too. I hope you get the extra help and support you need. ((((Hugs))))) to you. I know how tough it is. Well, we all do on here.
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My Mother mutters also and I used to think that I had to do something about it. Until I accepted that this was not the same person she used to be I had so much resentment. I remember feeling like I was 14 again, that she was doing her passive-aggressive behaviors, and somehow I had done something to make her angry. The first 6 months we lived together was pretty rocky and I used to come on this site for courage and patience. The good news is that I have gotten more patience, the bad news is there are new behaviors that crop up that I have to let "just roll off my back." Caregiving is not for wimps. It is a demanding, low paying job that not too many people understand. Sometimes I think my sibs think that I am on "vacation" living here because now I only have to work part-time. The biggest challenge for me is not resenting my sibs for their selfishness, getting time off so I can recharge, and not taking the stuff my Mother says personally. The gifts that I get are, being with my Mother these last years of her life. Sometimes she is who she used to be and we talk and laugh and I cherish those moments and hold on to them when the dementia takes over. Many hugs and good thought to you.
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Yes, I am constantly adjusting myself and realigning my attitude; I was thinking that I am grateful to have her mutterings, it means she is still with me, it is hard to remove ego and not take it personally sometimes. When I find myself short of patience and feeling sorry for myself and misunderstood, I need to sit down and write a gratitude list, this puts things in perspective. I feel that the more grateful I am the more in tune with my spirituality, so it is always a good barometer for me to see how my acceptance and resentment scale is doing.
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He thinks it is funny? I think he needs to spend a few shifts tending to her needs!
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Good point, Maria17. I often think to myself....when all sound stops, then I will feel so bad about complaining, I will wish I had those little sounds in the middle of the night again.
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My problem is is my MIL severe combativeness , I finally have help but I still have to help and keep her from swinging , kicking and spitting at one of my caregivers, in the afternoon same thing, we can't even change her because she's hitting and slapping and pinching and getting much worse, she's bed ridden and has dementia 89 yrs old. But this is wearing my down and I know it bothers the caregivers. They've even told there bosses. And when I tell my husband he thinks its funny!
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take deep breaths and let it go. it's something you can learn to do. every time you feel your blood pressure rise over something your mom says, tell yourself 'she can't help it. it's not her fault. it's the disease.' and ignore it or nod and say 'yes, yes, i know" and then ignore it. another thing i've learned is that they go through phases and this too shall pass. my mom used to mutter all the time under her breath (she would say she was reliving her life) but she no longer does that. when these phases pass, that's when it really hits you that they are losing more and more of their brain.
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The above comments are so true. I guess I am lucky because my husband cannot speak words. He makes sounds....like a hum. Maybe one syllable, maybe three, which he repeats over and over and over. He occasionally does it in the middle of the night. It's hard to ignore sometimes. I pray alot, asking for tolerance and patience. He cannot help it, and I have to keep reminding myself of that fact.
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I've experienced the same things. You have to become a "Duck" and let it all roll off your back. We are not caring for our loved ones anymore. We are caring for their bodies. I feel I'm caring for the shell that once belonged to my mother. Its hard and you have to be strong. My prayers and thoughts are with you.
Take care.
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Try to understand, she has no control of what she does or says as her brain no longer fuctions as it once did, you have to let it roll off of you and not take it personally, be kind and loving and comfort her as much as possible, please I am my mothers full time caretaker who has dementia, I have been doing this for 6 years now, the most important thing to know and understand is this is not her fault, she has no control, keep her on a schedule as any schedule change can cause great stress to her, always be loving even when she curses you, hold her, tell her you will always be there for her, please read up on the disease and be empathic, will keep you in my prayers
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