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Freqflyer, when I do something I do it to the best of my ability. For example, when I make my dad's bed both sides must hang over evenly and the covers underneath cannot hang out from under the top cover. I have an aid that comes once a week for three hours, through the Cargiver Support Program. When she makes the bed the covers will hang at an angle on one side of the bed and there will be more covers on one side than the other. She can bed bath my dad, clean up the room and make his bed, feed him, and potty him and be done in three hours. Whereas, it takes me much longer to get all this done. I am trying to figure out if it is my OCD that it takes me longer or just the fact that I spend a little extra time doing my tasks so they are done right. After all, this is our home, not the nursing home where an aid might throw the covers up just to get done. If I'm going to do a task, I may as well do it right.
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Lovebug, what are the things that are disrupting your OCD? Mild OCD can be a positive as you like everything in order, thus can put your hands on any piece of paperwork you need. It depends on what you are finding yourself doing.

I know when I took over my parents finances, what once was in order by my late Mom was now scattered. Dad had papers all over the place. I would take home boxes of files, 3-ring binders, and loose paper, and try to put everything in order. It was like doing a 10,000 piece puzzle... and there would be many pieces missing !!

So talk to me, let me know what is going on. I have a good friend who is also OCD and we would compare notes and start to laugh about what we do.... like with window shades, they all have to be the same length when opened... nothing wrong with that.
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Oh! Caregiver has OCD! Oh my! That would be very difficult. And caring for someone with dementia? Those with dementia will constantly move things around, put things where they don't belong, hide things, hoard used tissues, and the list goes on. With OCD it would be impossible to be a caregiver to dementia! Is there meds that will help you to relax? Maybe therapy like Jeanne said. You will not be able to change their behavior, like many area of life, we can only change ourselves.
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Are you in therapy for this problem, lovebug60?
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Freqflyer, you are correct. I am my dad's caregiver and I have obsessive compulsive disorder.
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It's the caregiver who has OCD, not the patient.

Having OCD is no picnic when dealing with an elder. My late parents lived in their own home, and I lived in mine. Since my parents were able to "manage" on their own, so they thought, I was called upon to be their taxi service, and to purchase groceries, doctor appointments, etc.

I like everything in order, it's like I could go blindfold around my house and find what I need. In my parents house, my Mom as she aged didn't have like kind things in the same place. The clothes closets weren't in any type of order. I like everything facing the same way and in color order.

My late Mom tried to keep things in order but once she passed my Dad was haphazard. It became a challenge, not only for me, but for Dad's one caregiver who also had a bit of OCD. We pretty much grinned and beared it.
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Lovebug, I am reading your post as you, the caregiver, is burning out from your own OCD. Am I correct? If so, been there, done that, still have the t-shirt.

Tell us more.
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Have you discussed her OCD with her doctor? I would and see what options there are. My cousin had OCD before we realized that she had dementia. She had it with certain things like paper towels, cat food and her cat in general. She always thought about her cat and you could not distract her. She was terrified that the cat would escape from a crevice the size of a pea. She was terrified the cat would fall off the couch and get injured. She was so obsessed with the cat, that she could not let her out of her site. She would cry aloud due to fear that her cat would get sick. It was terrible. She was inconsolable.

Each person is different, but most people with dementia move through stages and sometimes that particular obsession is forgotten. My cousin eventualy forgot about her ca(within a few months) t and never mentioned her again. She still likes to look at pictures of cats, but not any particular cat. Also, she takes meds for anxiety and depression and doesn't seem to obsess over any one thing anymore.

Hang in there! Sometimes, things do improve, though, other issues may take their place.
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OCD. If this person has dementia it is not OCD. The dementia causes them to forget they have done things. For example, my mom with Alzheimer's would check the doors to see if they were locked once every five minutes, at least. Opening and closing the windows and drapes also fell in that category. It is part of the disease.

And thinking about it I am sure many of us, when we just get in bed, wonder if we have locked the doors. We have the benefit of being able to remember after we have consciously checked them. Those with dementia, do not remeber, so will do it over and over again.

Have you tried redirection? Get them involved in doing something else, shift the focus. Is there anything harmful in the repetitive behavior? If not, realize the repetitiveness is part of the disease and accept it as a behavior that will continue until a later in the progression. Try to relax, get involved in doing something yourself, maybe that would help both of you.
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lovebug60, do you mean that your loved one has OCD and it is driving you crazy? Could you tell us a little more? What is your loved one's major impairment? Dementia? Something else? What are the repeated behaviors that are particularly annoying? Do you live together? Are you able to get away sometimes?

A little more detail will get you more helpful responses.
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