Mother is in last stages of Alzheimer's. She also suffers from Sundowner's. September 24, 2011 she broke her hip, which accelerated the Alzheimer's.
My grandmother died 21 years ago, and my grandfather died 51 years ago. She knew about both events, but her mind is no longer able to grasp this fact.
Daily, sometimes for hours on end, she will try to go home to her family. When she is unable to go, she becomes quite agitated and then decides the reason she cannot go is because her family doesn't want her. I've tried telling her they are gone, I've tried telling her they'll be right back (her case manager's suggestion). I've tried distracting her. I've tried telling her they died. I've tried going along with her. I've also tried just letting her ramble on and on. I really have tried almost EVERY approach under the sun!
NOTHING works. This is her usual segue into wandering. Unfortunately, she doesn't want to use her walker when she's wandering (because she doesn't remember she needs the walker), and she is at great risk for falling. She gets VERY violent when you try to convince her to use the walker, but if I don't, then she will fall and I can get in trouble for denial of critical care if she falls and breaks her other hip!
I really need to know some new methods to address this, to help prevent her falling and injuring herself.
So... is it kinder to just let her believe whatever she wants? Or is it kinder to gently tell her they are dead?