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Mother has a landline phone that announces the caller. Repeatedly. 6X in fact. She will never pick up the phone but yells at it when it rings…”oh c’mon already!” It’s not like she gets a lot of calls, but she will never pick it up and complains when calls come in. Answering the call, disconnecting the phone or voice mail are not options for her…no sireee…just yell at the phone and do nothing. Also has a cell phone that she won’t answer, read texts or use voicemail. I understand her fear of “new” (ha ha) technology but I have shown her many times how to access texts/VM to no avail. Anyone else dealing with this?

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Why does she need a cell phone she doesn't use. I would stop the service. Money wasted.

Does Mom have Dementia?
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Reply to JoAnn29
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My mom thinks any call should be answered, even though we have explained spam calls, and she seems to understand that. Our personal fav is when someone is calling we don't want to talk to at that time (like long winded FIL or cousin) and she picks it up.. But I can see the problem if you are calling her..
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Reply to pamzimmrrt
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When people act in ways that aren't like themselves, I'd discuss it with her doctor. Maybe, there is something going on with her that is causing this behavior. Have you had the chance to stay with her in her home for a day or two to see if there is anything else odd that she is doing? Can you chat with her neighbors or church friends to see if they have picked up on anything unusual? Of course, it could be that she just doesn't want to be bothered. If it wasn't for my work, I'd likely only have a cell phone for emergency calls only. To me, most phone calls are annoying. Telemarketers are the worst, but, I am able to answer and respond appropriately when necessary.

I'd question if she really knows why she is handling communications this way If she doesn't know, I'd be curious to figure it out.

Oh, just because someone has new phone explained, doesn't mean they get it. Sometimes, they may not be able to process new information.

I might conduct an experiment and set up a regular standard phone with no extra features and see how she adapts to that.
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Reply to Sunnygirl1
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I have the opposite problem.....mine will answer the phone no matter what....actually that is how she broke her hip. Going to answer the phone farthest away to get it. Without her walker and when an extension was at arms length. Go figure.

I am curious as to what happens when a family member needs to get in touch....I would think that could be pretty troublesome. Unless she answers because she knows who is calling? As for everything else, I think it’s a lost cause. Especially since she is resisting. Save yourself the grief .... I think the saying that “ you can’t reach an old dog new tricks” might just apply to us humans as well. 😊
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Reply to Abby2018
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How good is her hearing? You mention that she will respond to email and texts. Perhaps she is trying to hide the fact that hearing is failing. Even with the best of technology, phone equipment may not offer as clear a message as 'inperson voice'. I experience this at times, especially with cell phones.

If her hearing has not been tested in a while, you might consider having her see an audiologist.
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Reply to SharonGLPC
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Have you asked her why she doesn’t answer the phone? I understand how she feels. I made the really stupid mistake a few months ago of taking a “survey” and listing my phone number. I began receiving calls every 15 minutes to half-hour for six weeks. It was impossible to block the numbers since they came from all over the US and there were many, many of them.

Does she have caller i.d? If a familiar name comes up, would she be more likely to answer the phone? I have a message on my phone that says, “please leave a voicemail. I do not answer a call with no name I.d.” It’s a simple press of a button.

Does she live alone? If so, try explaining to her that if you call her and there is no answer, you’ll have to check on her by coming to her house, or calling the police to do a well-check. “And that would be annoying too, Mom. Because if you don’t answer the door, we will have to break in.” See if that changes her mind.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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