Follow
Share

Really starting to dislike my father. He's 85 and has early/not quite moderate dementia, fully ambulatory. All he does is SIT, sleeps, eats and reads! Sits in the same clothes until I remind him it's been 3 days. Or when my daughter says Grandpa, you smell. Every Sunday is an argument to get him in the shower. His reasoning is he doesn't work up a sweat so he's not dirty. I feel like he takes advantage because he gets waited on. When his wife was alive, he did his own laundry, made his own coffee. Easy things. But he does NOTHING for himself. He turns a doctor appointment into an embarrassing social event, wasting their valuable time. He is an attention seeker. I hate taking him anywhere. I'm so angry. There are days I can't even speak to him, I'm so disgusted with him. My daughter works full time and has a special needs child, so I try not to ask her for help. But more than anything, I feel guilty because of how I feel about him.

Find Care & Housing
Sorry you are so frustrated with the situation. Like CWillie said, you need to understand that people with AD or other dementias are no longer themselves nor capable of logic or reasoning. Once you understand that part, the rest still doesn't get any easier because it is mentally draining on you, but it helps to know the person can't help their behavior. Thinking you can change their behavior is a waste of time. You can't! Don't even try! The only thing you can do is understand why this is happening and remember, it's probably no fun for your dad either! I can't even imagine how it would feel to be in their shoes! Being confused is probably scary to them also.
If it is more than you can handle, and it probably is, look for an assisted living facility to place him in. For your sake and for his. This is a terrible disease and it's not going to get any better. Most of us have had to do the same thing with our LOs because we couldn't handle it either.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to Tiredandweary
Report

Don’t apologize for a strained relationship. It happens. It’s normal. You need time off. Everyone needs a break. You are preaching to the choir. People here have been there or still going through it now. Sending you hugs. I wish I could give you a magic wand. Sorry I wasn’t much help but wanted to offer support. 💗
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
Report

It will not get easier.. Ask Friends, relatives, non relatives.. caring people...

U get our messages.. physically go to places ask social workers, doctors, etc..

They will help guide you.. too
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to MAYDAY
Report

Start looking for a place near you... 6 paks, board n cares... etc..
Just Know It Is Okay. You decide.. You give your dad a chance to visit places, or you hunt for yourself... see what looks best for y n dad.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to MAYDAY
Report

Chalk It Up for Dementia. ... Sadly...

He smells... ok,,give him baby wipes... Maybe he doesn't or cannot or refuses to sit on the hygiene chair, that allows him to sit on either side of the bathtub..
YOu can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make him drink.
He may not think he stinks...Anyway to convince him?
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to MAYDAY
Report

You are burning out.

It will get worse. Do not feel guilty - the anger and dislike you are experiencing are the result of sustained tension, and are not about any fault in you or your father - but do get help.

Read up on enabling/reabling/disabling, which will give you extra reasons to get help for your father to increase his independence. Right now you're probably too stressed and overwound to work with him successfully on that, but don't let that stop you finding others who can.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Countrymouse
Report

People with dementia, as a rule, hate taking showers or doing much of anything for themselves. It's not that he's trying to irritate you, I don't think........just that his mind is no longer working properly and so he can't do what he once did. You are applying YOUR rules of 'normalcy' to a man who's now suffering dementia, and 'normal' no longer applies. You have to enter HIS world and HIS reality, which is very difficult.

My mother is 93 and lives in a Memory Care Assisted Living. My DH & I visited her yesterday & honest to God, I felt like pulling my hair out after about 20 minutes. Her behavior was beyond irritating, and nothing I said to her got through. Nothing. I even bought her an Alzheimer's clock which she now refuses to look at, and kept saying it was Sunday yesterday when the clock told her in HUGE letters it was Tuesday.

I could NEVER, ever, under ANY circumstances care for a demented elder in my home (or in their home). Why not take Alva's suggestion and look into Memory Care Assisted Living for your dad? Not only will he get some great activities to participate in, he'll get socialization with peers, 3 hot meals a day and 3 snacks, and a staff of people to look after his every need. You can go visit him and become the daughter again instead of the irritated caregiver. It's irritating ENOUGH to go visit.....but then you can leave!!!

Oh, and please DO NOT accept the Guilt Card lots of people here LOVE to use. Like saying Oh But He's Your FATHER and He's Put Up With YOU So Now YOU Owe HIM. Nonsense. Having children is a choice our parents made, and there was a bonus at the end......we grew up into useful members of society and had families and children of our own. Our parents are not going to do that.......they are going to continue to decline, especially with dementia, and reach a point where THEY become toddlers again, wearing adult briefs and needing 24/7 care, which is 100% a different story. Having your father cared for in an ALF is still giving him loving care; just in a hands off kind of way. There is still a TON of things to do for him when he's in an ALF, trust me, I know.

You owe it to yourself to look into ALF care for him AND for yourself. Good luck!
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to lealonnie1
Report

We are not always the best ones to give in home care. I think both you and Dad would be better off were he in an Assisted Living. They would actually find it easier to deal with him, and he is likely to listen to them better. You have a right to your own life. There is enough on your plate. Realize and embrace your limitations. Doesn't make you a bad person. You will be able to be more loving with your Dad in care. Hugs.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to AlvaDeer
Report

My husband passed away a little over 2 years ago - 2 months after, my mom became sick and was diagnosed with dementia - my dad couldn't take care of her so we sought to find an assisted living. I'm 1 of 4 siblings 2 of 4 live out of state, I live local, my other within an hour. While in the assisted living, I still did a lot for them until both became on Hospice - dementia is covered under Medicare Hospice for those of you who may not know that... we began having a caregiver come daily and assisting with showers, clothes etc.. my parents both would have issues and would frequently disagree with things as well as repeat themselves and stories many a time. I was running myself ragged just checking on them a couple days a week.. yes they were dependent on my doing stuff for them but I personally saw a change over the years in their behavior where they were no longer able to make decisions for themselves, they are my parents and they raised me and have done so much throughout my life for me, it's the least I can do to be patient and accept this horrible disease with some grace to show them that they are still important and deserve to be treated with some dignity. We all get tired and burned out - there are facilities that you can take them to for respite care, meaning that you can have a little break. We all are looking in from the outside and don't know exactly what is going thru their minds. We often think they manipulate us, they are selfish, they don't care about our feelings but in actuality, they just want to feel like they still have some independence. We can't take it personal because they are no longer the parent that we grew up with as a child or have known during our adulthood. Especially those who have lost a spouse, unless you know by losing your own, do not judge how they act, it's devastating to lose a spouse no matter what age. My mother passed away 5 weeks ago, my dad had fallen and broken his hip and had been in skilled nursing for almost 3 months, during this time my mom went south, she stopped eating, taking her medications wanted to sleep all the time, didn't want to do anything anyone suggested she do, showers, wash face, brush teeth etc... my mom was 88, we suspect she had dementia for at least 12-14 years.. having been separated from my dad and it being the first time in 67 years of their marriage gave her no hope, she often thought he had died and also that she had no children... watching a parent go thru the stages is a heartbreaking thing.. now my father is in a memory care facility, he is now experiencing what my mom began 2 years ago with his mindset... it breaks my heart.. I guess all I'm saying is, so you have to hear a story for the 100th time, you feel your parent can do more, you think they are selfish because their previous spouse did so much for them.. just remember, they are our parents.. they put up with us all our lives and we should help them go thru their last phase of their life with some additional love... I'm not saying we can't get tired and frustrated.. Lord knows I've had my share of times this has happened... reach out to your local church, or friends get an adult sitter for a couple hours a week so you can do some self care... there are local groups for those with parents with issues... just don't regret what you didn't try to do for your parents and take a little break... I've not said anything to offend anyone intentionally, I'm just speaking from my experience and hope that maybe something might help someone while going thru some of the same things I did.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to tjgibbs64
Report
MargaretMcKen Mar 7, 2020
Mrs Gibbs, you are coping with a lot, and doing the best you can. Some people can't cope as well. Some parents have made it almost impossible for other family members to accept or forgive past behaviour, let alone things getting more difficult with dementia. You aren't offending anyone by sharing your situation, perhaps you will help others to keep going on a difficult path, and you do seem to realise that everyone has a different story. Best wishes and courage to you on your own path.
(1)
Report
You seem to be getting a lot of advice to apply "tough love" but it may be that he has lost the capability to do what you expect of him, dementia is so much more than simple memory loss and his lack of initiative and inability to recognize the need to bathe and change his clothes or get up and take care of his own needs sound very typical. I'm linking a Teepa Snow video series I recommend often:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLVl8vTLjje8ESAEvpjVoVTEK-_6X2jTdl

If you can't accept that this may be the new normal with worse to come it may be time to look into different living arrangements.
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to cwillie
Report

From your profile: "I am caring for my father Vinny, who is 85 years old, living in my home with age-related decline, alzheimer's / dementia, anxiety, depression, hearing loss, incontinence, mobility problems, osteoporosis, sleep disorder, stroke, urinary tract infection, and vision problems."

Why are you caring for him? Do you have siblings?

What kinds of caregiving duties do you have to do for him?

What is his financial situation? Can he afford to live in a facility? (And is he paying you for living with you? He should be!)
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to CTTN55
Report

This is why my Dad would have never lived with me. And I told my siblings long before it would ever happen. Told my brothers I refuse to care for a man other than my DH. My Mom waited on my Dad hand and foot. When he got older she had to make him get a shower and layed out clean clothes. I don't do that for my DH.

Time to tell Dad its time for an AL if he can afford it. Otherwise its a LTC with Medicaid paying for it.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to JoAnn29
Report

I can totally understand your frustration. How long has your dad been living with you? It sounds like you are burnt out!

My mom can be the same way and it's MADDENING. WHY don't you get up and do things for yourself? And I made the mistake of doing waaaay too much for her, that she actually could do for herself. Someone here thought maybe I was enabling her. Darn it - they were right!! That was a real eye opener for me. I pulled back and made her do more for herself. Just like when my kids were little - if they CAN do it, they SHOULD do it.

Someone else told me that doing too much for our elders is not ENabling, it is DISabling. The less they do, they less the can do.

I have shared your disgust with my mom. WHY don't they care about taking care of themselves? Staying active? I just don't get it.

I think that you may be burnt out and need a break. Does he need to be supervised or can he be alone? If he can be alone, get out of the house more. I go to the gym almost every day to get me a break from mom. Even at home, I can not spend much time with her as I find it frustrating and boring. Conversation is so mind numbingly repetitive, I just can't take it.

Get someone in to spend time with him and get some time for yourself. Maybe send him to a senior center or senior daycare?

If/when you really can't take it, maybe move him into assisted living or a nursing home?

Best of luck!
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to againx100
Report

It’s a bit hard to answer this without knowing if your father lives with you, you live in his house, or you just visit. But from your description of him, he is a pain in the neck, dirty, smelly, demanding, self-centred and insensitive. Why should you feel guilty for disliking this and him? You would be a bit odd if you didn’t.

Depending on your living arrangements, it’s time for a deal. If you want my help, you do x, y & z. Otherwise you need to go somewhere else where you are paying for service.

Regarding the doctor, you could send in a note that says ‘He sees this as a social visit, please don’t let him waste your time’.

Toughen up! It’s the only way to change things.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to MargaretMcKen
Report

Ask a Question
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter