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My siblings and I all agree that my elderly Mother is showing signs of dementia. We have been trying to get her into a Doctor to be diagnosed. Our Aunt who lives 9 hours away keeps trying to micro manage the situation. She feeds into my Mother's paranoia and has created an "Us vs. Them" situation. She also helped my Mother cancel the appointments that my Mothers Doctor made for her with a well-respected Neurology group. I don't know what to do! This Aunt is making this so much harder on my siblings and I. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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This situation happened to my Father with his companion. We found out later that this person had my Father put all his assets in her name while she kept him away from the family. So who is paying her bills now and managing her affairs? Does this person have a hidden agenda? Sorry to be blunt but people do prey on the demented elderly. It might be best to find out who is the power of attorney and if there isn't one yet to decide who will manage your Mother's health and financial decisions in the future.
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LoLo, I'm glad that you are feeling resolved and are going forward with your plan! Please let us know how this all works out; we really learn from each other's experiences on this forum!
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BarbBrooklyn- Her PCP did make those appointments and my Aunt helped my Mother cancel both of them. So far she hasn't cancelled the appointment made for the Neurology group. Hopefully they will reschedule the ones she cancelled.

I tried to include my Aunt and she got nasty. I'm done with her. I won't communicate with her any longer.
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Another technique would be to engage Aunt as part of the solution.

" Auntie, these are the things were noticing about mom right now. We know she has your confidence and that you have her best interests at heart. We need a good and sensitive way to get her medically looked at. How do you think we should approach this?"
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Don't tell Auntie about appointment. I would not tell Mom if I thought she would tell AUNTIE. If she has Dementia, time is of the essence. The gamble is with the rest of Mom's life. Get the diagnosis and then and only then can you go forward.
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So, did her PCP run blood tests for vitamin deficiencies? Order an MRI or CAT scan? Do a screen for depression?

Or is she sending her directly to a neurologist?
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Thanks everyone for all your feedback! I got a lot of great information that I will definitely use moving forward.

I think its important that my Mother see a Doctor. Dementia is a group of symptoms. The actual ailment could be one of 89 different illnesses (I've done some research). Vascular, Lewy Body, Severe Anxiety or Depression, Parkinson's, Alcohol induced dementia, Alzheimers.... or she could just have extremely low B12 levels. So I think its important to get a proper and thorough diagnosis. 
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Sounds to me like Auntie has dementia also! Worse case scenario change your monthers phone number and don't give it to Auntie. Mom may call Auntie but only if she can remember her phone number. I would also stop all communication with Auntie. You have to do what's best for Mom, not for Auntie.
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Lolo, I am looking at the problem from my own experience with my Mother vs, Brother, SIL, Cousin and rogue Senior Facility. There was a rift in our family between Bad bro, SIL, and myself over money. bad Bro took a large sum out of Mother's estate in 2008 to avoid a 5 year look back period should Mother have to go on Medicare. She is 100 years old in October, her money should last 4 or 5 years I have to figure out what to do and to how to earn money to support her should she run out of money. I care take her 24 x 7 at at a better facility. Can I do it? I am 75 years old in November. I am going to do whatever is necessary according to God's will for me. I have rose from the ashes before. Bro, cousin and rogue facility took over her Health Care.  I had POA and against PCP's orders and my opposition, they started on an aggressive "Care" program that injured Mom. I was drug through the mud. Lies were made up against me. Mother was forced out of her IL Apartment into a hellhole of Personal Care. The ER Dr. stated there was no reason for Mother to be sent to the ER by the (rogue )facility, to get her to PC as there was no reason she could not go back to IL. Cousin is a retired Pediatrician. He is very wealthy and talks a good game. He was interested in another booking from Mother's rogue facility for her 100th Birthday as a pin on his lapel with his other achievements. He interfered in her care. She went from Independence to invalid. She is making progress but my expectations are not that she will overcome the abuse she suffered at the rogue facility. The damage to her eyes in PC from lack of conformity to the Eye Dr's prescriptions cannot be turned around. The damage is done. She may need a laser procedure that might prevent her from total blindness. At the time of the abuse, Mother would not choose sides for what would have protected her from abuse. Then she was confused from hits to her head when she fell due to negligence of Nurses and NA's putting her in front of the TV when she could not get in or out of the chair herself without falling instead of taking her to the bathroom, cleaning her up and getting her tucked into bed after mealtimes. 
           In her mind, men are right whether right or wrong. She was slow to choose what is best for her until my son, stepped in and got Mother out of the rogue facility into a loving facility where I stay with Mom full time. Her thinking has changed. It is a shame her dysfunctional thinking she has had all her life blocked out what obviously best  for her even before her head injuries. She has grown up. She now says cousin should leave us alone. Brother, is working with Mother and I now that he found out how much 24 x 7 care costs.  That is what I am doing for Mother.  SIL now says I am doing a good job. Things are going much better for us.  Mother and I went to church together this am, we caught the end of the 1st service and sang with the congregation the closing songs and took part in closing prayers. After that we went to Bible Study, topic: Satan. I wrote out the jist of the discussion/lesson in big black magic markers on blank sheets of paper. She followed everything. We went to Eat'n Park after the bible study then back to her apartment. It was a great experience today. It was a tremendous struggle to go through to get her to this point.  My advice is to get closer to your Mother. Triple your visits to her.  Minimize the calls from you Aunt. If she calls when you are there, don't put her right through. She is out to undermine all you do.  Does your Mother call Aunt? How is your Mother's hearing? Is your mother getting scam calls? I didn't plan it but because of scam calls we turned Mother's ringer off. I would check Mother's messages and call back after screening the calls when I was there. Mother's hearing got progressively worse. When we moved Mom to present heavenly facility, we did not get her a phone. We share my phone. I put her legitimet calls on speaker phone so that for example I can tell her what the caller  is saying when she doesn't hear  them. What are your Aunt's intentions interfering with your Mother's Dr. appointments? Is there money or property she could take over? Ego? Are you POA over Health Care? Why doesn't Aunt trust you? How old is Aunt? Cousin although a "perfect" 86 year old  was never nice to me. He wants to be the shining star but without much effort when it comes to Mother. That's how little he thinks of her. He did her great harm. Don't let your Aunt do this to her and to you. Will keep you in prayer.
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Lolo, how long has this suspiciousness about your sister been going on in the minds of your mom and aunt? What is its basis? Does anyone have POA or a health care proxy?

If your mom is technically competent, and she is until she is declared otherwise, at a competency hearing, how she lives is her choice.

Sadly, you may need to back off and let her actions lead to consequences that will force the authorities to take action.

In these kinds of cases, in which the person of dubious judgement is refusing help or care, I'm a fan of notifying APS. You've at least told someone official that you think she's not safe living alone anymore.

But it really IS up to her at this point.
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My Mom gets nervous about doctors appointments, so sometimes it's easier to get her ready and take her. Don't tell her ahead of time. Your aunt doesn't need ANY information about Mom's doctor appointments, so please follow the advice here. On the day of the appointment take her, and then after take her for a nice lunch /dinner or coffee or tea, making it pleasant. Also do you or your sister have a medical power of attorney? Keep her primary care doctor aware of the situation.
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I'm sorry to hear about the family disagreements. Perhaps your Aunt knows that your mother would prefer to live at home as long as possible. Going to a doctor could be the 'beginning of the end'. Trust me, nobody wants to live in a Nursing Home or any type of facility if they are at all able to manage at home. Perhaps she just needs some in-home help? The doctors aren't able to do anything for alzheimer's that I've seen. None of the medications appeared to do any good for my father, in fact he seems to feel much better without any pills and all the side effects. If your mom is cognizant enough to cancel a doctor appointment, feed & shower herself, I think you could help her figure out how she can stay independent for as long as possible in her own home: without doctors, medications, etc (unless that is what she wants).
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Get Auntie out of the picture. We had the experience and it did not end well. Mom was diagnosed by two different doctors as having Dementia. Auntie and a sibling decided that Mom was just a little forgetful, with Aunties help, sibling changed all of mom's Trust and made herself in charge of everything. Auntie attested that Mom was of sound mind over the diagnosis of the professionals. Auntie and sibling moved mom from her secure apartment in an assisted living complex where her other sister also had an apartment to a place more convenient for sibling. Our hands were tied, we consulted an attorney who advised us that by the time he could get it fixed, it would be too late for Mom. He was right. Her mind lasted two weeks after the move, her shell for several more years. Mom was locked in and drugged because she tried to escape. She had a phone when she first was moved but sibling had it taken out when Mom called me to rescue her. Sibling could not have done without Aunties help. Mom lost, I am not sure that I can find a winner here. Don't let it happen to your mom.
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LoLo1169--I just wanted to mention that I'm thankful you keep in touch after having made your original posting. There are so many "hit and run" posters on this forum--someone asks a question and then we don't hear from them again, which is especially frustrating if more information is needed to allow those responding to provide the most relevant answers. (Sometimes I wonder if the original poster has even bothered to read the responses!) In any case, I hope you have gotten something helpful from all the suggestions here--if not, just clarify your needs further.
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Do not tell aunt anything. Do not tell mom anything, she will tell aunt.
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Stop telling your aunt.
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Just to give you some context... My Mother has lived 9 hours away from my Aunt for 15 years and My Aunt has visited her ONCE. That was when we invited her to a 70th Birthday party WE threw for my Mother. The only time my Mother sees her family is when she flies or WE drive her to see them. In fact, if my Sister hadn't driven my Mother to see my Aunt she wouldn't have spent those 10 days with her. For her to say she is closer to my Mother then her own children is ridiculous. My Aunt has 6 little dogs. No Children. So I'm not surprised that she doesn't comprehend the bond of Mother and child.
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Check out the text my Aunt sent me last night. I told her we (my siblings and I) just want to get my Mother in to see a Doctor ( as HER Doctor has recommended) so she can be diagnosed and hopefully given some medication to help. Whatever the diagnosis! I pleaded with her to stop micro-managing the process from 9 hours away. This was her reply....I changed my Sisters name to (my sibling) for privacy purposes.

"I am not micromanaging. You and (my sibling) are systematically destroying what little confidence my sister has left. I certainly don't trust (my sibling),her motives have never been straight up and I think you are being used. I spent more quality time with my sister in 10 days than you ,your sister and brother ever have. I know my sister. And who is her "Doctor"? The nurse pract who is (my siblings) friend. First I heard of a board of neurologist. Your stories keep changing.
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My Mother isn't so far along that she can't communicate effectively. We are at the very beginning stages of this. We know she has dementia... we don't know what's causing it. She has short term memory loss. Her reasoning skills are poor. Sh has difficulty problem solving. She has problems with word finding. She may not even have alzheimer's! It could be a vascular problem... low B12! My Aunt keeps helping her cancel appointments her general Practitioner has made. It is so frustrating.

We are just trying to get her diagnosed. My Aunt calls my Mother and then feeds into my Mother's fears and paranoia (which she is also exhibiting).
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Yes, how is Aunt finding out. Agree, don't tell Mom until ready to go. Who has POA?
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How do you know that your aunt is doing these things? Are you taking Mom's word for it? That may not be an accurate reflection of what is really happening.

Paranoia is very common in early-stage dementia. That can and does happen without any outside influence or encouragement. I'm just suggesting that even if you were able to get auntie on your side, your mother might not be any easier to deal with.

I certainly hope that this next appointment works out for you all.

If your suspicions are confirmed, then what? If the neurology clinic says more tests are needed but this looks like dementia, how will that change things for you and your sister? Mom will presumably still be resistant and paranoid.

What kind of help does she appear to need? Is she messing up her finances? (Often an early sign that something is wrong.) Does she have a fridge full of spoiled food? Is she falling? Does she wander out of her house without a destination in mind? Does she dress appropriate to the season? Does she repeat herself a lot? Is her memory poor? What kind of help would you arrange if she allowed you to arrange something? In what ways is she at risk now?

Even after a diagnosis (assuming it is dementia) she will still have the same needs and risks. Don't wait for the appointment to start reading up on ways to help those with dementia.
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I know this all sounds terrible! It is!

I have (and always have had) a fairly docile mom who knows that she raised three very smart children who have no ulterior motives. She has very rarely resisited anything we've ever suggested.

I know that other folks (my poor husband included) don't have it so good.

To be honest, my MIL (husband's mom) raised three boys, ALL of who were quite dependent, first on her and then on her their wives.

So I completely GOT why she was suspicious of their motives. Hey, you reap what you sow; my parents told us early on--get yourselves careers, there will be no money left here)

If your mom is suspicious and not apt to trust that you"all have her best interests at heart, you may have to walk away. Maybe say "Hey, mom, if you don't' trust US, then the State of (whatever, NY, California) is going to determine what is right for you. You can trust your kin, or the Governor).

Sometimes playing hardball with a parent like this works. Only You and your siblings can determine how hard to push. Just know that WE all know how hard this is.

Hope this works out!
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So, here's the thing. Will mom go to lunch/breakfast whatever?

Something that gets her out of the house? Where sis can say, mom I have to make a stop here to pick up some paperwork?

Make sure that you send the office a bullet pointed list of your concerns before the appointment. Sis shoukd take a copy of it with her. Emphasize that mom is not recognizing her deficits.

I wouldn't expect much out of this first appointmnent.

Most neurologists will so a mini mental status exam ( what day is today, who is the president, etc) and have patient draw a clock with hands pointing to a certain time.

You might get a recommendation for further testing, Mri, etc. Which mom might refuse.

If this appointme t doesn't work out, you simply wait for her to fall (that's sounds awful, I know).

When she falls, you call 911. You let the hospital admit her ( don't let them "hold for observation"). Admission is key.

Then you get a full work up at the hospital and perhaps rehab.
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My Sister is taking her. My sister can show up and try to just take her. But my Mother could refuse to go with her. Especially since my aunt has set us up as the enemy.
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"Agree to go"?

You don't "ask" her.

Who is taking her?
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I live about 2 and a 1/2 hours away from her. I am praying that she will agree to go. We are going to try what you all are recommending. Keep your fingers crossed for us!
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I agree, don't tell her until you are out of the house. Maybe you and sis take her out to lunch.
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I will try that. I am praying that she doesn't screw it up. This appointment was so hard to get. My head will explode if she refuses. She isn't completely "out of touch" with reality. So it might be what someone mentioned above... we may have to wait until she does something that scares her into seeing a Doctor. Hopefully she won't get hurt!
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What CM just said.

Lying to your parent never feels good. Think of it as a fib to protect her well -being.

I told my mom neuropsych appointment was to obtain a baseline measurement
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Don't tell your mother and your aunt will not find out. Come up with a reason to leave the house that day and tell a therapeutic fib about remembering her appointment suddenly.
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