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I have to vent. Whenever I take my 2 Alzheimer’s folks out of “prison” for an outing, my dad constantly thinks people are calling his name. I’ve tried going along with it, redirecting the conversation and even saying, "Nope, I didn’t hear it Dad.” End result is always the same. He hears those voices in his head and to him it means the first person who walks by is the person who was calling his name and therefore must be a friend. Picture this, an old, strange man coming up to you, putting his arm around you or on your shoulder and randomly starting a conversation like you were old buddies. I’m past the embarrassment part but still need to deal with it if I ever take him out in public. I know I can leave him in the memory care place and not ever take him out and it may come to that, but that seems cruel while he can still sort of have some joy with going on outings. Anyway, just had to vent.

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Thanks for the comments folks. I have those little cards to hand out. Yes, my parents are a handful. I know I’m going to miss them and their antics when they die and I try and remember that when I want to pull my hair out. Outings are important to the folks, so much so that their facility called me yesterday to request to have me chaperone them to be able to include them on an outing for the assisted living folks. The trained professionals know how difficult my folks are in public but also see the need to keep the folks stimulated beyond the walls of the memory care unit.
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You are amazing taking both parents out.
My aunt did something similar for awhile. Thought everyone she saw was someone she used to work with. She would try to convince them. Sometimes it was true. Once I said to her that she always thought she knew everyone. She would said “well, I know a lot of people. “
For sure if she didn’t know them before we got in the room, she knew them by the time we left. I would caution her not to touch people as I told her it frightened some people and if I caught her in time I could keep her from it.
She no longer does this and I kind of miss it now. She doesn’t often want to go out these days.
If your dad is having auditory hallucinations it might be a different issue. Does he seem to hear someone calling him when you are alone or in the ALF? If so you might want to mention it to his doctor.
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Some people have little business cards made up that say, "My Dad has dementia. Thank you for your patience." or something like that. Of course it is better to prevent the encounter with the stranger/friend if you can.

Have you tried something like, "Oh Dad. That was a parent calling a child! You don't run in to too many children who are given your name these days, do you? I think they went into to gift shop. Let's get us some coffee over at that refreshment stand."

I understand why you would like to continue outings as long as possible, especially if Dad seems to like them. But if his behavior that disturbs strangers gets worse you may find he'd be happy to sit on the patio and play cards with you, or look at photo albums, or just reminisce. Having your attention is probably more important to him than the outing part.

This isn't easy, is it?
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Hopefully, people understand and go along with it. My Mom always thought one of her aides was a family friend. Mom would say, you know her she's (and couldn't remember the family friends name) daughter. She would get so frustrated that I couldn't figure out who the family friend was. The aide was no one I knew.
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