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Where there was already a problem with who 'mum' was, does this exacerbate the problem with memories?

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I agree with Pam..

Dementia care is stressful work no matter who the client is...
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I believe the elightenme was asking about whether because her mother was adopted she may be having even more confusion as to where home is. And, when she calls for her mamma I am wondering who she might be calling for? Would she be perhaps calling for her birth mom or her adoptive mom?

I do not see her question being about how the dementia will progress but more about how she will experience confusion. This is a very interesting and deep question and I am interested in the answer myself. Would love to read any insight for those who may have been through this type of experience with a loved one.

And ferris1, I'm sorry your parents had such a hard upbringing.
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Agreed. Background doesn't impact whether you get dementia or not. But I believe it can color what experiences and recollections are manifested as a result of the dementia.
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My mother had a horrible mother and she was the eldest of eleven children. My husband was the eldest of seven children and beaten like my mother and both had/have dementia. But just because you have a horrible upbringing, does not determine how your dementia progresses. Neurons do not know the difference between a good family or bad family life. Nor do the plaques that seem to form inside the brain. Since no one alive has yet found out the secret to why one gets dementia, having a bad family was never a reason suggested.
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ferris1, I think enlightenme is wondering if her mom - adopted - has more complexities associated with dementia because of her uncertain early upbringing. My mom had a traumatic childhood - one of 6 kids pulled away from the family and sent 100 miles away to live with grandparents (from age 4-9) because her mom had a breakdown and couldn't take care of all of them. Chosen to be sent away because "she was the one who didn't cry." Then reintroduced into the family five years later. As she hearkens back to earlier memories, I see how greater upset comes to the surface. Yes, dementia is dementia, but I think dark early memories make the dementia darker as well.
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There is absolutely no documented evidence that being adopted has any relevance to dementia. Dementia attacks young, old, rich or poor, adopted or not, nice or not so nice. Stop grasping at straws.
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As I read your question, it is your mother who was adopted? So was my aunt. I am interested in the answers, because I have suspected the influence of that on her behavior as her dementia brings her back to earlier memories and attitudes.
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The dynamic between the patient and caregiver is often rooted in relationships established decades prior. So if you didn't get along when you were little and mom was big, it just isn't going to change.
On the other hand, if you loved your stepfather/foster mother/grandma it may be MORE painful to see them slip away. Children like that experience denial, they keep insisting mom is "fine".
There's no easy answers. Old age is not for cowards.
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