Follow
Share

Almost 4 months ago, I moved my Grandma in with my family and I. She wasn't able to care for herself anymore and she was very lonely. My husband and I pay for her living expenses, my uncle and my mom pay for some caregiver help. She is pampered and VERY well cared for. We take her to get her hair and nails done, she is taken out to lunch almost every day, is always clean and well fed, never left alone (which is incredibly hard on me, I am a busy working mom of 2 very active teens and wife to a firefighter that is gone for days at a time), yet she bad mouths me every chance she gets. Especially to her caregivers. Usually she tells them that my house is actually her son's and we are freeloaders (not true, I own my home), that we starve her and her cat (they are both obese, and they both eat nonstop, not true), that I beat her (never), that we lock her in her room (never, but sometimes I want to). Yesterday her caregiver told me that she has been telling her that I am cheating on my husband (NEVER!). She is very confused at times and has never been diagnosed with dementia but she definitely has it. She goes in and out of lucidity. When I talked to her about it she denied it (I have heard her say these things myself, I know she says them). She cried and yelled and went on and on about how people are making up stories about her. It was awful. I was very understanding and kind when I confronted her, I just said "Grandma, I know you get confused and mixed up sometimes, but it hurts my feelings when you tell people untrue things about me. I know you don't remember saying it but you did. I am hoping that by us talking about it, maybe next time you will remember to only say kind things." It as very thought out and practiced, I didn't want to attack her but I felt it needed to be addressed. I am at my wits end. She has become a mean, miserable person and I feel like I have trapped my family. She is rude to my daughter and complains about EVERYTHING, constantly. I was trying to be kind and loving to her, but i don't know how much longer I can take this. My home is no longer a place I enjoy. Is this behavior a typical progression of dementia? Is there anything I can do? We have already tried Xanax (for her, although I could probably use some too), it helped a little but not enough. Please, any advice would be appreciated. I am trying to keep her here as long as I can but if this behavior continues I will move her to a home. I refuse to put my kids through this any longer.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
Whether or not she has dementia, it's not OK to put yourself or your family through this. Put her in a decent home, and have her over to visit when you feel up to it.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

The Xanax has actually made her less irritable and angry. She was even worse before we started her on it...
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Xanax can make some people more depressed and impair judgement. Some people it just relieves all anxiety and they seem to be practically floating on a cloud, but it may just not be the right drug for her and a change could make a difference in her, and your, quality of life.

It would be great if its just that simple...I would say about half of the time I suspect a side effect, it really does prove to be the problem, maybe 20% of the time changing meds is really dramatic. Wish it was more scientific than must individual trial and error, but it may be worth exploring.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Grandma is on hospice, so it was the hospice Dr that prescribed the Xanax. All of her medications are closely monitored by Hospice, and a nurse evaluates her twice a week. She has a lung condition that is similar to COPD called Pulmonary Fibrosis, it's progressive. She was in very poor health when we moved her in, that's when she was put on hospice. With our care and the hospice's interventions she has made an amazing physical recovery, but her attitude and sense of reason has rapidly gone downhill. She was confused from the start but it has become so much worse. I have spoken to hospice about her decline, they have seen it before. They want me to think about possibly moving her out, they see the strain it has put on my family. I was just hoping for a miracle or magic pill I guess. I was really hoping she could die here with loved ones surrounding her, but I don't see her passing anytime soon and I don't know how much longer we can cope with this.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Your Grandma needs to see a doctor (neurologist) who can diagnose her condition. She may have all the symptoms of dementia, but until she is diagnosed you won't know for certain. There are other ailments that can mimic the symptoms of dementia -- strokes, mini-strokes, tumors of the brain. Even medications can cause symptoms of dementia, especially if she is taking several and they interact with each other. You said that she has taken Xanax, which is used to treat anxiety or panic disorder, can become addictive, and would have been prescribed by a doctor. How was she evaluated by this doctor? Was she just treated for anxiety or were other tests done? If your Grandma is confused and not always lucid and is unable to care for herself then she needs to be evaluated to find out if she does have a medical problem such as dementia. On the other hand, is it possible that she wants or needs attention and that telling stories and acting out is her way of getting it? Has she always been this way? I know I might sound a bit harsh, but you have to look at all sides of the equation when someone's health is concerned. The bottom line is, in order to care for your Grandma in the best way possible, she needs to be evaluated by a physician, such as a neurologist, to get to the bottom of her problem. If she does indeed have some type of dementia then he can set up a care plan, prescribe the best meds for her condition, etc. Don't just continue along with the assumption that she has dementia -- find out!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.