So, some background: We do have a caregiver that comes in between 8:30am and 1:30pm then returns from 4:30pm to 8:30pm. We are actively looking for someone to come in from 1:00 to 9:00pm and cover the evening better. We also have cameras, door chimes and pressure floor mats all through the house to assure we can view things as they take place. My mother refuses to place my father in a care facility up until 3 weeks ago this was okay. We managed. Now as my father is getting worse and the dementia progresses we are seeing he is more agitated, fidgety, anxious and meaner. We are seeing more signs of aggression now as well. My father is not the man he was even 3 weeks ago. This is progressing faster than we expected and were honestly ready for but here we are.

So FINALLY (right?) my question. We want to keep my mom protected from being hurt. Has anyone had an experience like this where the parents want to stay together but one of them is getting more aggressive in his daily life. We don't know if we are missing something, again a nursing or specialized care center is not an option. What else can we do? Any suggestions are welcome at this point.

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I recently had to call 911 due to my husband’s aggressiveness and paranoia. He has Parkinson’s dementia, which is akin to Lewy bodies.

He was taken to hospital where he made the emergency ward “unfunctional”.

He is now in a geriatric psych facility and the future is uncertain because he cannot go into our care system with his behaviours.

Professionals told me — and now I am telling you — your mom is in danger. Your dad would never want this.

Good luck to you all. This is a horrible disease.
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This was the straw that broke our backs! dad had always been a sweetie, until he was not, and we were all up all night for over 36 hours, with me still working! We got him into a MC for a short term stay until we got our feet back under us and figured things out, and believe it or not he loved it there! They were great with him, and he didn;t really know us at that point, Mom went every day to visit him, so she felt better about things and he was not aggressive while he was there. He passed on hospice ( not the fault of MC ) at the end of his month, just as we decided to make him a permanent resident. ( It was a family joke that he was frugal and didn;t want us paying any more! ) Mom was a tiny thing, and Im not a heavyweight so his pushing and shoving were very frightening
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First, have him checked for a UTI. This infection can "suddenly" create the aggressive behavior you are describing. It can be treated with antibiotics.

However, if it's not a UTI...

Is your Dad on any meds for depression, anxiety, aggression? If not, why not? It's time. The only way to guarantee protection for your Mom is separation.
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Tell his doctor. Sounds like he needs something to calm him down. They tried a 2 or 3 different things for my dad, then finally hit upon a combination that really helped a lot. I would say his anger, agitation, and destructive behavior were reduced 85%. Good luck!
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People with dementia have murdered their spouses.
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Advocata Apr 14, 2024
This may be true. However that majority of people with dementia do not hurt or murder anyone. Much like people with mental illness. Often behavior modification meds and/or both can prevent violent incidents.
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A change that was sudden three weeks ago is in the purview of an MD in any case.
This could be a bladder infection causing a mental change.
Whatever the cause it is something to be addressed by the MD. You don't want medication so strong that the person is stumbling and falling, but sometimes a low dose anti depressant works to calm, even medical cannabis now being typically used. I would discuss with an MD.

I congratulate you on the fact you have such a good set up going here, but at some point placement may be necessary and is not really a "choice" for your mom. It may be a necessity for her safety.

I sure wish you the very best in this dilemma and I hope you will update us.
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Sorry but , Dad needs to be in managed care .

My mother had dementia. The doctor said more often than not comes a time when a patient with dementia can not be home with family . They need to be cared for by people the dementia patient does not have a personal relationship with .

Your mother is in danger , they need to be separated . She can visit him in memory care .

Even if this turns out to be a UTI and he gets better with an antibiotic , this aggression can happen again the next time he gets a UTI , or just happen in general from dementia progressing . And maybe Mom will get hurt the next time

Dad is to the point where he needs his behavior meds managed in memory care as well . He’s now too unpredictable to have him home with Mom alone at all .
You may also have your hired staff quitting because of behaviors .
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Your mother may have to change her mind.

You've done a fantastic job of setting things up for smooth caregiving, but there's no way you could anticipate everything. Your mother thinks she is doing the best for dad by refusing to place him in a care facility, but as you see now, that may be unrealistic. To say the least.

We all have our ideas of seeing our loved ones through their dementia with nobility, brilliance, singleness of purpose, and all those good things. The something that you're missing is what you've already more or less figured out. This isn't sustainable. And mom needs to be kept safe.

As well as you've planned, you're not professionals. Guide mom to understanding the difference by taking her to visit some memory care facilities. There are many good ones, but as long as her mind is closed, she'll never find that out.
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MissesJ Apr 15, 2024
Yes 👏
I recently visited someone in memory care and it was surprisingly inviting, well-decorated/furnished, no antiseptic smell. Many of the residents were at tables in the lounge area engaging with one another…and smiling!😊
Your Mother has to re-evaluate.
What is REALLY important?


Care & Safety go together.
Aides need a SAFE environment to provide CARE. Or aides will quit, leaving family with it all.

Togetherness is not all or nothing.
Eg What about quality time together instead of quantity?

When the needs keep growing, so must the care plan.
A. Age in place, with family.
B. Age in place, add home supports & aides - as you are doing
C. Care Home accomodation.
Find the best local option, visit often. Daily visits but separate nights, this allows the spouse to REST.

Only other option I can think of is drugs. Basically your Father would get medicated until he is not agitated. This may keep him at home longer. It may also make it harder to care for him, with poorer mobility, increased falls, drowsy, make him less likely to eat, poor swallow, incontinence.

24/7 togetherness may be possible but come with outcomes you don't want.

I am so sorry you are going through this. It is tough, no doubt about it.
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I am sorry for your situation. I have recently had to move my mom to MC because her aggression became increasingly physical. My parents said they would never be separated or move out of the house. I also had the same help in place for them and took so many precautions. Then she became progressively physical and mean-
With the help of this group I was able to formulate a plan when the situation arose for the next inevitable time. When she attacked me, my 91 year old father was there and she tried to attack him as well. We are no longer able to safely have her at home. The outcome could have been grave.
I called 911 and she was hospitalized, appropriately medicated and transitioned from rehab to memory care. She actually has transitioned better than I anticipated. The first week she had some agitation but now is adjusting better.
This has been an overwhelming and daunting (an understatement) 2 months but we are all safe and she is well taken care of by professionals.

My father, who is living at home, has been grieving her move but understands the gravity of the situation. He doesn't want to visit her because he feels she will never be the same.- which is true.

Good luck in navigating through this.
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