My dad called twice from the nursing home this weekend. I remember reading something on here about normal telephone etiquette does not apply anymore. So when he got nasty with me, I told him that if he is going to be nasty I will hang up and I did. But I feel so guilty...

Trying to set boundries with a Dementia person is not going to happen. Does Dad have a cell phone? Next time you are there take it when he isn't looking. Tell the staff to tell him he misplaced it and say they will keep an eye out. Make sure the DON knows and passes the info on. You don't want staff looking for something thats not there. If he calls from the desk, ask that he no longer be allowed to. The NH will contact you if there is some kind of emergency. They have to, by law, call about falls.

Your fathers brain is broken. He can no longer reason or be reasoned with. He will become like a child.
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Reply to JoAnn29
Tothill Apr 1, 2019

I agree that his brain is broken and he cannot be reasoned with, but setting boundaries is a good practice for Chergal. Knowing that she does not have to listen to the abuse as it is crossing a boundary may help her to hang up, or not answer in the first place.

Dad may never realize why she is hanging up, but she will know why she is hanging up.
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No guilt required. Stop beating yourself up for not being his scratching post.

You did nothing wrong, you aren't responsible for his age, health, happiness or his anger. Stop owning it.

Just because he is your dad doesn't mean he can treat you terrible and you just have to take it. You are a grown woman with a sound mind, not a little girl that has no choice but to listen to daddy's tirade.

Keep enforcing those boundaries and keep reminding yourself that you don't deserve to be treated hateful and he is making the choice to have a civil conversation or get hung up on.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal

It is normal telephone etiquette to hang up on anyone who is nasty to you on the phone. Why on earth would you feel the need to listen to nastiness from anyone? No need to feel any guilt. This is setting healthy boundaries.

There may come a time when Dad should not have access to a phone, but for now you are not required to answer all his calls, nor continue to listen to his complaints when you choose to answer.

And you do not need to worry about not answering his calls. If it is an emergency, then the nursing home will deal with it and call you if necessary.

You have enough on your plate with your hubby's health issues.
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Reply to Tothill

You do not have to engage with angry phone calls. Actually, you do not even have to answer the phone. You can let it go to voice mail and if he leaves a message listen to it later to make sure there is not an emergency you need to respond to and if not - let it go until you feel like calling back. Even if they can't help it, it is still no reason for you to be a receptacle for their anger. The way you handled it was perfect.
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Reply to GingerMay

Don’t feel guilty. My mom had her days and nights turned around and would call at 3AM. I turned my phone off. You don’t need to tolerate anger or nastiness from anyone even if they have dementia.
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Reply to Ahmijoy

You did the right thing. You also DON'T have to answer every time he calls.
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Reply to lkdrymom

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