My grandmother lives with my mom and I, and suffers from dementia as well as a host of other physical issues. I am aware that validation is a wonderful way to deal with delusions, and have used it many times with great success. For example, when she rambles in about how she “has to call him” when there’s nobody she has to call and we don’t know who “him” is, I’ll just say something like “That’s okay, I called him already and told him everything. He says hi and that he understands!”, and that will usually satisfy her amazingly.
Lately, though, every time she gets even a little distressed, she begins thinking that my mom is trying to kill her. This is SO hard for me to have to watch because my mother does EVERYTHING for my grandma, and sacrifices more that I could ever immagine. And I know it isn’t my grandmas fault, it’s just the disease, but seeing my mom being treated so horribly absolutely breaks my heart and I don’t know what to do. I know validation works wonders, but how can I validate this? What do I do? Say “She says that she won’t try to kill you anymore and that she’s sorry”, or “Don’t worry, I won’t let her kill you” or something like that? I can’t immagine acknowledging and validating that my mom (her primary care giver) is trying to kill her is going to help anybody...
Any advice from anyone who has dealt with something similar would be very helpful! I want my grandma and my mom to both have peace.

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There is medication for this.
Helpful Answer (1)

What you need to validate is the feeling of being afraid, I think.

"Gee Grandma, I'm sorry that you're so afraid for your safety; we'll do everything to keep you safe".

Is there some specific method that she thinks mom is using, like meds or foods? Have you discussed these symptoms with her doctor?
Helpful Answer (1)
CathyDukas Nov 2019
Thats actually very helpful advice, thank you!

As far as methods she thinks my mom is using, it’s just any time we take her to the hospital, or any time she isn’t feeling well. For example, she commonly tries to escape from hospitals cause she thinks my mom brings her there so that they can kill her (even when she ASKS to go to the hospital). Once she said my mom was keeping her from going to her exercise class because she wanted her to get weak and die, when in reality my grandma was too sick to go for 3 days. She can’t go anymore cause she is too weak, but you get the idea.

And we have told the doctor (she is in the hospital now after asking to go for a hernia, and now is thinking my mom is trying to kill her, which is why I posted this question) and they did a scan of her brain and said it shows normal signs of aging and nothing else, so that wasn’t helpful.
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