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My dad was in rehab for six months with a really bad UTI. While there he suffered from hallucinations and delusional thinking. He's been back home since July; since the UTI has cleared up he is mobile again and rational most of the time. Some of his delusions have persisted, but these are mostly easy to deal with. There is one, however, that's got me stumped. He thinks that while he was away, a lady who works at the rehab facility and her son somehow broke into our house and stole various things, including all his musical instruments. I cannot argue with him rationally about this: even though all his instruments are still here he still insists that they had been stolen and somehow were returned. Plus he's made a list of other things that were "stolen," most of which we had never owned in the first place. When I ask him how this all could have happened without my knowing it, as I live here too, he says that the two got in through a secret doorway in the back of our (second story) condominium. He even claims he saw a press conference about it on the national news, and that he's been in touch with the FBI.Lately, when he starts talking about this I try to change the subject, but the part that I don't know what to do about is that he has called the local police twice since he's been home to report the "theft." The first time I kind of freaked out when I opened the door and saw a policeman there. I spoke to him privately and explained the situation and he was very understanding. I told my dad that the police were working on the case and would be getting back to him. This seemed to satisfy him for a while, but then, about two months later, I opened the door to find the sheriff waiting outside! He had called her. I tried to find a way to get the sheriff alone to explain things to her, but my dad went on a long ramble, accusing the woman at the rehab of committing grand theft, etc. I tried to gesture to the sheriff that this was all in my dad's head and I think she understood. After this I told my dad that I was in daily contact with the sheriff and they were working on his case. But yesterday he started demanding that I get the sheriff's number for him so he can call them again to renew his report. I try to use the tactic of changing the subject, assuring him that the sheriff told me that they were working on the case, but it's not working. He's constantly asking me to get him the phone number for the sheriff. I don't want him to keep calling the police about this "theft" that never happened. I hate to waste the police's time, I don't want the woman at the rehab facility to be accused of anything which I know she didn't do, and I'm afraid that if he calls too often, the state might force me to put him in a facility. How do I deal with this without making my dad feel that I think he's "crazy"?

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Thank you for all of your helpful answers. Nice to know you're not alone.
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ff my Mums friend's husband has frontal temporal brain damage (not dementia) - it occurred after a fall but now he has the additional problem of early signs of dementia. he has frequent UTIs, each of which seems to take more of a toll than the one before. He used to be a police officer and now every new person who starts work at the home is an ex convict in his mind. The home are considering removing him from their home because not only is he a big man he is violent too. He calls the female nurses prostitutes and has assaulted 4 of them sexually in an effort to do heaven alone knows what. He has attacked 2 of the male nurses for being gay. (It all centres around them having to change his catheter regularly and he isn't having any of it).

They even trained a family member to do this and he screamed the place down.

My view is if the professionals can't handle it then anything we do can't be criticised. GA great idea but if this phase lasts a long time he won't let go of it. A has been like this for 9 months now and it is fast becoming a serious problem
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Charlie, you are doing all the right things are that recommended with dealing with a person who has memory issues. Usually these issues are phases so hopefully before to long your Dad will move into a different phase.

Garden Artist above had some good ideas. It's almost like a child who thinks there are monsters under the bed or in the closet. Don't know if installing night lights would help or not, saying thieves don't like night lights. Or put out a wildlife camera that takes pictures in the dark via infra red flash would help calm Dad's nerves.
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Do you have a friend or relative your father could call, who could pretend to be someone in law enforcement? I wouldn't ordinarily recommend this as I think it's a felony to impersonate a law officer, but perhaps this friend or relative could play along and just tell your father they're still working on the case and to be patient. And just keep the secret between the two o fyou.

You might also ask the local PD or Sheriff's office how they would recommend handling the situation, if they have someone who's familiar with elders and confusion who would speak with your father and reassure him that they're working on the case but haven't been able to find many clues as to the perpetrators.

I think there's an underlying fear though of being robbed, especially of his valuable and probably cherished musical instruments. What can you do to ensure him that you've burglar proofed the house as much as possible?
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