Follow
Share

I have been taking care of dads finances since my mom died. Dad's dementia is slowly getting worse. He has accused me of stealing 8000 dollars from him off and on for the last year, even though he hasn't seen a bank statement in years. Now he is accusing me of stealing his pocket watch because we can't find it. I have searched his bedroom and cannot find it anywhere. He says I took it and gave it to my husband. He says he saw my husband with it recently when he was here. Truth is he hasn't seen my husband in a very long time, nor has dad been at our house in the last year as he is in assisted living. How do I deal with these accusations? It is hurtful since I do so much for him. If I deny the theft he simply argues. How do I deal with this? I go visit with him once a week only to hear from aids and nurses of the lies he is telling about me, to all the workers there and all who visits him. This is so sad to me as my dad and I were very close.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Sometimes sane people can't comprehend dementia.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Thanks everyone who has responded to my questions and story. I know this is not my dad talking to me. I know that with my brain, but my heart apparently doesn't know it, because it hurts, no matter how much I tell myself it is not him.
I was so happy this past month. Every time I went to see my dad he was in a good mood. Then I went in to see him yesterday and he was very quiet and unhappy. I heard from the social worker that he thinks I am telling stories to his love interest(nurses aide LOL) about him murdering three people. Then he told the same story to my brother. I know he really believes these things he says. Just like he really believes that nurses aide will marry him. I sometimes feel like, why bother even going to see him? I get so angry at him sometimes, other times hurt. On top of this I still miss my mom so much. I don't know why she was taken when her mind was still intact : ( Thanks again. I will reread these post whenever I am feeling down. Hugs to all.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

KatKat,
I know how hurtful it is to hear these accusations. I heard them too. I "stole her money", I "physically abused her", I "stole her medicine", I "wanted to molest her" (UGH!). One day I was crying so hard I couldn't stop. I couldn't reason with her that I would NEVER do that but there is no reasoning with someone who can't reason.

I'm against bringing papers/statements and attempting to explain it to him. He will not understand the information. You will be wasting your breath and frustrate yourself and him too.

Try to change the subject when he brings it up. Its called diversion. Take him outside or get a snack for everyone.
When my mom just won't "get off" a subject (usually her headaches or how much she hates her daughter-(me), but she doesn't know it's me), and I've tried to do the above and I've told her to drop the subject, I tell her that I've got to leave. Sometimes she'll stop talking about these touchy subjects, If not, I leave.

You've got to preserve your sanity when trying to deal with their lack of sanity. Whatever you do, do NOT take any of this personally. This man is no longer the dad you have known for many years. He can't be held responsible for what he says because his brain is being attacked by a disease. Most of us have gone through this phase with our loved ones. I'm sorry, it hurts.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

My mom use to accuse my dad of never loving her, leaving her alone all the time and would say; He never has cared or loved me, I know about her which come up after my Surprise Birthday Party I planned for my dad (80th). She was mad nobody told her and that dad was getting this attention plus thought he was in love with another woman, BY the way his wonderful and caring sister Mary Sue. For awhile no one dared mention her, dad would have to sneak and call her. He has called my Aunt everyday since she was diagnosed with liver cancer, her and my mom were very close
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

KatKat,
I'm sure most of us caregivers have been through this. Dementia causes paranoia and it's common for patients to make up crazy accusations and stories. There is nothing you can do about it and you can't take it personally. If your dad was in his right mind he would never accuse you of these things. Arguing will not help. You can try keeping a copy of your dad's bank statement with you when you visit and giving it to him when he makes accusations. He won't understand it but it might make him feel better. When he says something has been stolen you can sit down with him and write a description of the missing object and tell him you're going to turn it over to the authorities so they'll look for it.
I can't tell you how many unbelievable stories my grandma came up with. We learned just to laugh about them. I know it's harder with a parent when you're the caregiver. My MIL has late stage dementia and constantly tells us stories and we know they're just that, "stories" she's made up.
I handle my mom's money and she has just started questioning things. She is obsessed about her money. I show her the bank balance each time I visit and assure her my brother is keeping track of her accounts. I'm sure the day will come when she accuses me of stealing from her. The way I handle things with my mom is I ask myself "how would I want my kids to respond if this were me". Most of the time I decide I'd want them to laugh it off and go on with their lives. They won't be able to change it. I've also talked with my kids about this. They know that I love and trust them and if this ever happens with me that it is just the dementia talking, not me.
I think it's important we have these talks with our kids before we get dementia so that they know what are wishes are. I've told my kids that if and when the time comes, I want to go to assisted living even if at the time I say I want to live with them. I don't want them to live with the guilt that many of us caregivers are living with.
Helpful Answer (7)
Report

Katkat, it is not unusual for a person who has dementia to start accusing others... this is sometimes part the stage of this disease. I know it can be hurtful when you are being accused of something you never done, but we must realize that Dad's brain is broken, thus he isn't thinking straight.

Here is an excellent article regarding this issue.

https://www.agingcare.com/articles/how-to-handle-alzheimers-disease-lying-144204.htm
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.