Reality versus fiction when dealing with a parent suffering from dementia

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How do I deal with my Dad asking about money. He is in a nursing home and is settled but still harbours a desire that one day he will live in a house with my sister. He wants to see his bankbook but I am worried that he will be upset if he realises how much he is paying per month. He suffers from dementia but at times he is more lucid than others.I don't like lying but the truth isn't always acceptable. What should I do?

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I went through that with my mother. I tried to not bother her with her checkbook regularly, as seeing the amount for the nursing home distressed her, but there were times when I had no choice. She insisted (and she wasn't so far into dementia that "fake" things worked), so sometimes I'd just bring it all in, she be upset, but I'd say "that is what the money is for - your care."

She, too was very lucid sometimes, and other times not. I remember that one time, later in her dementia, when she just couldn't be bothered with signing her taxes, done by her CPA.She didn't "get it." I signed them as POA. Then she got clear enough to know what the month was and she had always wanted her taxes done on Jan. 1st! She saw it was Feb. I called the CPA and he kindly sent me a second copy for her to "sign."

I remember my mother telling me they had fixed up a fake checkbook for my grandma, as she would get so upset.

I wish there were easy answers to these questions, but if there were, we wouldn't all be on here! Each case if different. Sometimes we have to let them feel the pain, if there is no other way. Other times we can fudge to save them pain.

You are a very caring person who doesn't want to see him suffer needlessly. But sometimes you may have no choice. It's all very hard. Keep coming back for support.
Carol
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