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Castle, you are a far better person than I am. I do not have the patience it takes to deal with bad behavior...even though I understand it isn't the patient's fault...often they don't even know what they are doing/saying. Intellectually, it is easy to comprehend. Emotionally/psychologically it is a very different story. As you can tell, I'm having a very bad day, but the truth is, I am not cut out for this. I know this, but it doesn't matter. If I don't take care of my husband, no one will. It's me or nothing so I am stuck in a situation I am not equipped to handle.
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I would go to the narcissistic web site for ideas as well as look back on this forum as the topic is discussed by so many of us who have dealt with it.

Could be mixture of personality disorder and other mental health problems going on for which medication can help tremendously after a proper diagnosis.

Sorry you are going through this. Hugs.
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Thank you very much, 3pinkroses....I will look over the site and see what advice there is there for me. Yes I agree about medication. I think she needs a complete review since shes been on the same ones for about 4 years now. Of course when I suggest that I get ' you're not a doctor - how would you know'?
I definitely think there are mental issues which have been exacerbated by her ageing so perhaps it's time for a meeting with her doctor? Thanks for listening, and hugs to you too!
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You must talk to the doctor as soon as possible. You cannot reason with someone with dementia...I found out the hard way. Call the doctor's office and set up an appointment for you to talk to the doctor one on one. It's really important for your peace of mind and your physical and mental health. These kinds of problems will eat you alive...believe me, I know. I've been there.
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My mother (age 84) explained to me that as she has gotten older she has a harder time doing things, sometimes simple things. This causes frustration and a bad mood. Some depression too because of not being able to move around and do things for herself easily as she once did. Not being able to remember what needs to be done or how to do something causes frustration. This is not dementia but just slowing down physically due to age.
Please speak w/your mother's doctor(s) about a review of ALL medications and drug interactions too. Your local pharmacist can be very helpful too in this regard Just pick a slow time @ the pharmacy to do this.
Lastly, please stick up for yourself and tell your mom as you would a little child that talking to someone that way or using hurtful comments IS NOT polite and will not be tolerated. Sometimes our parents need to be reminded to be polite as they sometimes get wrapped up in themselves and their aches and pains. It's almost as if when we age we revert to the " terrible twos" in our acts and behaviors! Maybe your mom needs a hug, kiss and I love you "timeout" too.
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3pinkroses and scared are right on the mark! I went through this for many years and my mother was committed three times before we finally got a proper diagnosis of bipolar and mild personality disorder. After many years on lithium, I noticed her disorder progressing. I told her we were taking her in for a check up, but told the doctors office ahead of time what else was going on; this allowed the doctor to ask all the right questions and not put the blame on me. After checking her out, a normal exam with blood work, she was other questions that she couldn't deny in front of me. The doctor was able to see her demeanor and added an additional medication that is normally used in schizophrenia. Although she didn't like it, she started taking it and is doing much better.
Best of luck to you.
Hugs,
Suzanne
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I think there are ways to deal with this, and I worry that so many of us see horrible behavior and our only idea is to ask the doctor to "fix" it. Medical people have this solution, for the patient is only with them briefly, but at home, it is a long-time situation, and slower, gradual improvements are possible. You are right you can't discuss it with them - but you can try to time the moments when it seems worse than others. You can and must set your boundaries in incidents as they emerge (not in agreements ahead of time, for they forget). But when they unfairly criticize you, you can listen to a complaint once, try to investigate and resolve it, maybe listen twice - but if the person keeps complaining, you can say, "OK, I don't have to listen if you want to continue criticizing me. I will be in the next room, and check on you in 5 minutes." That approach was easier for me to practice as a paid caregiver than with relative, but it's amazing how nasty some folks who are not family can get - and of course as family, we may find ourselves stung more deeply. But it's important to learn to listen, then say why you have to leave, and give a time when you will come back. Then I'd go in the other room and sit, read my book and wait, and after 5 min, sometimes 10 if needed and she was sitting or lying safely - go back. If it starts again, say, I'm sorry if I did something that upset you. Ask if you did. Apologize - resist defending, they can't follow a train of thought or complex conversation that far. But if you've been brief, tried ot understand, apologized, and they start again, just say again, I care about you, but I can't just listen to you criticize me over and over, I'll be back in a bit, and maybe we can try again. And just LEAVE, even if they are still talking. Repeat as needed. I found that my elderly lady calmed down and often apologized, and I also noticed that she did it most when she was afraid to get out of her recliner when I wanted to get her up and walk with walker to bed so she could sleep at night. When she was tired, she was afraid to get up, as she was less able, and she told me one day that she had lost her memory and could not remember where she was supposed to go after she got up. Another longer term option: a different lady, who was bed-ridden used to swear like a trooper, and most people kept correcting her without result. When I taught myself to handle this behavior calmly, rather than focus on it and make it worse - I noted that she really escalated when she was about to be touched to be moved or cleaned - her skin was so sensitive, likely because of the meds she was already on. This taught me to prepare her by telling her clearly that I was starting the cleaning procedure and had to touch her, and as I started, I would be careful and watch her reactions and pause if needed, and when she saw that I was alert to help her with her fears, she also made an effort. And at other times, I read stories to her - that often worked better than conversations, and the pleasant experience together helped us both move away from the oppositional times, and they lessened a great deal, and she began to find small ways to say nice things to me.
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I know that all dementia patients are not the same, but have discovered over the past few weeks that my mother is far more capable of respecting boundaries than I had thought. I think maybe at least part of the time she is "demented like a fox". A couple of years ago before my father passed away it became necessary for me to drive my mother to appointments while she was recovering from a fall. For the past 2 plus years every time I drove her she would shout out unexpectedly that cars were about to hit us, to the point that I nearly wrecked several times. The cars she referred to would sometimes be as far as a block away. She insisted that she could not help it that it was "just the way I see things".

Finally in frustration one day I told her I know that you say you can't control this, but it is not safe for me to drive you when you do this. If you can't stop shouting out we will have to find some other source of transportation for you. The behavior stopped immediately and she has never done it again, nor does she act freaked out when I drive her.

Not only was the behavior uncalled for to begin with, but she was totally capable of stopping, and capable of remembering not to do it again. My husband and I have done this with several other of her controlling behaviors since then and very often it has stopped those problems as well. There are times when there is no doubt that she has dementia, but we have discovered that some of her behavior is by choice.

We have tried to gradually test the water to figure out which behaviors she can and can't control. Again, I know this will not be the case for all but is worth a gentle try.
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There are many possibilities causing this. I can only report my experience. For three years, Mom treated me like the hired help and very badly at that. She complained bitterly from the moment we started the day until the moment I fell into bed after an exhausting 22-hour day of her total resistance to anything needful. Ok, so much for me. I considered every possibility but was influenced by my knowledge of her life-long depression and inappriate anger which was exercised on anybody nearby (which was only me). Tried everything, including review of her meds, but more drugs were the answer - PROZAC and ARICEPT. Also check for infections which affect the brain function of older people moreso than younger people. Finally I found the right level of care for her; I partner well with the medical and administrative staff to help them understand her, and she is a willing patient about 95% of the time. I consider this success, though I am struggling to fill the cash flow gap in her support.
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I also have to confess that at one point when I was taking care of Mom in my home I was so worn that I told Mom she could go anywhere else she preferred. I offered to call a taxi and pay the driver to take her anywhere she wanted to go. This actually improved our relationship for a couple of months, but Mom's depression took another route, leading to lack of interest in living to the point one day of not wanting to eat or drink. This was a blessing in disguise for it moved me to hospitalize her immediately though the admitting physician was unable to find anything physically wrong with her, except that she was a terrible crumudgeon (his words). Depression can lead people to this very low point. The route from hospital to rehabilitation to assisted living ++++ turned out to be the only route by which she would accept moving to assisted living. I have spent down most of my savings but am now able to look for another job. Big yea!
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