Can a person with Alzheimer's disease be deliberately manipulative or petulant?

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Those are words my siblings use to describe my moms behavior, sometimes.

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Much would depend on her stage, but likely she is not deliberately acting that way. Her brain isn't functioning in a normal manner. She likely feels fear and perhaps gets depressed. Alzheimer's is very dificult, as you can imagine, to live with. My take is that this isn't deliberate, it's just the only way she knows how to act.

Another thing to remember is that people with AD tend to lose their inhibitions (that make us socially "polite."). Often they are "rude," but it's not intentional. They are just saying what crosses their minds.

Take care,
Carol
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Oh, man, that's a big question, namely, "how much control does she have of her behavior"... which translates into some version of, "how mad do I get to be when she does crappy stuff".... which is born of the idea that "tolerating crappy behavior encourages it." If you look at it that way, it comes down to "how do I handle her behavior, myself, emotionally" and "what's a good way to respond to her behavior". Once you ask those questions you realize that getting mad adds to your own suffering and isn't particularly influential/helpful. And -- guess what? -- that's true whether your mom is doing it deliberately or not. So, with an Alzheimer's patient or anybody else, look after your inner state with as much detachment as you can; and find practical responses to practical problems as much as you can. If you find yourself thinking "But she's doing it on PURPOSE" then a useful next step might be to say "suppose she is, what can I do that's helpful; and suppose she isn't, what can I do that's helpful." Then do the stuff that shows up on both lists.... It's good practice in focusing on what actually does any good... no matter whom you're dealing with.....
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Remembering how my mom was before this disease, I cant believe she would do some of the things she does is she had control. She asks for something hot to drink, then compains that she is the only one without a soda. Give her a soda, then its you know I dont drink soda. Does the same with any beverage and food. For one I know she wouldn't waste anything and would've appreciated having anything to eat or drink. (she is 85, so has lived through hard times, many times)Try to remember how she was and you can at least convince yourself that her behavior is not deliberate. Just keep caring for her and loving her the way she did for you.Try to remember all the times you deliberately did something unappropriate and she was there for you. Smile, Laugh and keep on caring. Its what we do!
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I would say it depends on what stage their disease is in. However children learn early to manipulate if you think about it, so maybe they can. I think it also depends on how they lived their lifes when they were well. It is not easy I know but assume that they cannot and do the best you can, which I am sure you are doing... take care
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Absolutely, I agree with rstkot, its NOT their fault. My sweetheart of a mom who couldnt kill and ant, turned into someone I didnt know. Its not their fault. As you said "mom would be shocked at herself the way she acts now" is what I say all the time too about my Mom too. She would accuse her grandchildren of taking things, say things about people negative, she never did that either. They are just so confused and scared and not themselves. I cant imagine treating or suspecting your mother is doing it on purpose, I hope no one ever thinks that of me if I ever should get it. Please treat her as she WAS and dont think its her fault. Its only going to get worse usually.
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The asker of the original question should have clarified the variable of whether or not the person was this way (manipulative) BEFORE the disease.
If it's so out of the patient's character to begin with (before) you know it's the disease (after). What about the one's who were controlling and manipulative before the onset? And now it seems they are using the disease as a reason to justify their behavior? I'm talking higher brain functioning here.... remembering consistently ONLY the wrong thing to do, consistently doing ONLY the very thing you have asked them not to do. When an opportunity to do the wrong thing in a situation doesn't come up for awhile and then does, NEVER accidentally making the RIGHT choice. I guess that's what it comes down to. It seems her intent is negative by choice because she NEVER "accidentally" gets it right. Consistency and intent. IF a patient with Alzheimer's is consistent in every way with the execution of getting it wrong, does it not imply that they can therefore be consistent in the other direction? And Yes, I'm talking about a person who was a mean, nasty and manipulative person before the disease. Those are the ones we have to talk about honestly and quit muddling up the discussion by grouping them in with the one's who were never like that before the disease. It warrants discussion and clarification.
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I think that certain behavior patterns and personality traits do not change with Alzheimer's or dementia. My Mother has dementia she is VERY much the same person in many ways. She is still somewhat dramatic and can be VERY manipulative... take care...
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I neglected to mention in my earlier post that my mother was never a sarcastic or manipulative person before her alzheimers. Although she was always a pro at making you feel guilty if you didn't call her every day.......lol She be shocked herself at the way she acts now.
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My mom has dementia and is manipulative and controlling, but she was that way deliberatly for most of her life anyway. It just has made it worse now that she is in nursing home and trying to find ways to get out and talk me into taking her back and caring for her on my own again with no other family members. She comes up with a lot of hairbrian ideas now to try to get out.
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It is hard. My mother says the same negative and hurtful stuff she used to say when I was growing up, but now is more often. If she gets upset, she knows how to use her brain to hurt with words or "small songs" I get upset and go to another room I can help to believe that those episodes are deliberate. According to the doctor, her Alzheimer is moderate.
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