I suppose others have posted about this but living this is a very difficult thing. My dad perhaps was always covertly manipulative and there were many lies he told prior to his diagnosis of dementia. But now, he is a full blown manipulator and lies readily to serve his manipulative ways. I have been his primary caretaker/ coordinator of care for the past year (since diagnosis) and I have had to take a step back and let my siblings take over because I can't keep up my life, job, children and take care of him. He is honestly like a 4 year old child or younger in mentality. He told my siblings recently that I never come to visit him. And yet I am there every other day and have devoted countless hours to taking care of his affairs (bills, food, etc). I know he was lying to garner sympathy but a part of me is so angry that I just want to give him what he has lied about it. If he tells others I never come and see him, then why should I? I think I am burned out and exhausted but right now the lack of gratitude has just infuriated me. Any advice from someone who has lived this would be greatly appreciated.

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Dear Hannah,

I'm very sorry to hear how you feel. There is a lot on your plate. And when there is no acknowledgement and validation from your parent it gets even harder. I know its a struggle every day. Everything feels like its snowballing and there is no end in sight.

I know its easier said than done but freqflyer is right. I didn't know this myself when I was taking care of my dad. I took everything so personally. I didn't realize how broken my dad was. The huge change to his life after the stroke. The effects of the medications. I tried to do my best for him every day but there was no thank you or please. I was just his daughter and in our culture you were just expected to take care of things. The lack of support from the siblings. My own frustrations. It was all so hard. My father passed away almost 10 months ago and I still have regrets.

If you can try to step back and look for other supports through counselling or support groups. Give yourself a break too. It is too much for one person to take on. I don't know if a social worker can help coordinate some of his care.

Thinking of you.

One thing I have seen with pretty much ALL elderly people who live "past their sell by dates" (Please don't think me horrible, but you certainly can live far longer than you or your loved ones would want) that their personalities become much more "them" as they age. Even with dementia, and their brains are slowing dying, they seem to become sweeter, kinder, or sadly, more dramatic and attention grabbing. I don't know why.

As far as the manipulation--yes, mother's "poor pitiful me" routines have increased with her onset of dementia. Her least attractive quality is now the only one we really see any more. It's all about her. What she gets or (pouty face) DOESN'T get. She's not a monster about it, but it's hugely hard to deal with her. 3 of my sibs have simply stepped away and will NOT deal.

My daddy had Parkinson's and late stages, he had dementia. But to the minute he died he was sweet, got sweeter and was so thankful for anything we'd do for him.

He passed 45 minutes into the New Year, 12 years ago. On the 27th we had had a family party at my brother's home. Daddy was bedridden by then and with the noise of the party in full swing upstairs, I crept down to his room to hold his hand and talk to him. He was barely "there". I asked what I could do for him and he asked me to sing to him, so I did, for about a half hour. He always loved my voice and I loved that the last gift I gave him was some peace.

Just saying--he was a tender, sweet man in life, and he carried that to the next world. It's so hard, b/c it's not going to be like that with mother.

I'm sure that she will still live for some years, and I don't want my memories to be the last 7-8 years and the downhill slide--but I can't change her.

hanna, this is part of the dementia. Both my Mom and MIL said similar things to my DH and me! I visited my Mom EVERY day at the AL and (all of a sudden) one day she said, boy I haven't seen you in a LONG time! Trust me, just go with the flow. Try - Oh, Dad, but I am here now so let's have a nice visit. And family should understand it is the dementia speaking. If they don't they can educate themselves by reading the ALZ website.

hanna, I realize all of this can be very frustrating but you need to remember that your Dad's brain is broken. The lies he is saying seem very real to him even though none have ever taken place. He is not lying to gain sympathy, he has dementia. Many here on the forum have gone through the very same thing.

Please read the attached article that will help you maneuver around this phase of dementia.

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