I am experiencing a lot of frustration with my mother-in-law. I can handle the repetition, it's the contradiction and obsession that gets me.

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Last night we spent an hour deciding where the dog was to sleep...in her room or not. She asks if he HAS to sleep in there as she doesn't want to be responsible for him. We say no he's fine with us. Three minutes later, she's asking why we won't let the dog sleep in her room. He's such a good friend, etc. This went on for an hour. We finally lost our temper and then she cried that she was sorry that she causes such problems. This occurs frequently: she says one thing, we try to agree with her and then she changes it to the opposite. This is not just due to the dementia but it certainly has gotten many times worse. She also talks non-stop. We were a couple of quiet empty-nesters and now we have a bi-polar chatterbox living with us! Talking is about all she has left now; everything she used to enjoy--puzzles, reading, watching movies--is gone as she can't keep a thought for longer than a couple seconds. It's sad. Every meal, she's not hungry, although she will eat if it's put in front of her. She has lost about 10 pounds in the past 2 years. At the independent living home, she was only eating one of the two meals that they provided. That was part of why we brought her to our home. I've worked as an activity director and felt I could handle this but my blood pressure has soared and I've gained weight since she moved in only 2 months ago. I feel bad for my husband as this is his mother and it must be very hard to come home to this every day. He is a pastor with two churches so he is very busy although he does have some flexibility in his schedule, thankfully. I don't know how much of this I can take...going to the doctor's today about my blood pressure. I know I need to learn better ways to handle the stress...just venting, I guess.

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Barb, you are exactly right, she was not making it at the independent living. She thought everything was fine, but it was becoming more difficult for us to maintain her independence.
When she first moved here 14 hours away from where my husband grew up, she actually improved with better nutrition, less fear of living alone.
This time no improvement and I think we have seen what they were dealing with at IL.
We only saw her 2 hours a day and since it was conversational (about her memories) she could hold it together.
We will start with daycare and then look into permanent placement.
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I got to the point I never asked Mom what she wanted. I pretty much knew her likes and dislikes. She ate what was put in front of her with no problem. When she asked if the dog had to go with her I would have said yes and then put her to bed ignoring what she said.

I would think as a Pastor's wife you have some responsibilities especially with two churches. If financially possible with MIL I would consider a Nursing Home. I think she may be beyond the care an AL can give. I know my denomination is associated with a Nursing Home. Better to pay privately and then go into Medicaid. If no finances then u can file for Medicaid.
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The way I'm looking at this, she wasn't "making it" in IL. That means she needed a higher level of care. Not to come to your home.

It also sounds as though the evening hours are hard, which day care won't help with. Has she seen a geriatric psychiatrist to see if meds might help with any of this?
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Oh *brother*.

You know better than most of us do what all the advice is, and what the techniques are, and how the disease is responsible etc etc etc.

But your MIL seems to be combining Alzheimer's Disease with something out of Kafka. I only got as far as the dog bed debate and I was already ready to weep with frustration.

Well. It can't be a case of either/or - either she stays with you, or she pines away in the ILF. What other facilities have you looked at? How about day centres? Any other support groups?
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No, she needs to go back to a care facility. Probably one with a higher level of care than Independent Living.

There is no reason that you two should have to "adapt" to having a mentally challenged person in your home.
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