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Hi! My Mom is driving me and everyone around her insane. I feel terrible saying that but it's true. She will be 80 yrs. old in Feb. and she and my Dad still live together in their own home. Their relationship (if you can call it that) is so unhappy. Every other day my Mom says that my Dad wants a divorce - can you imagine, after being married for 60 yrs.? Unfortunately, my Mom is probably in the mid-stage of Alzheimers - she remembers things from long ago, but can't remember what she had for lunch or where she's been. She's had all the tests done and was prescribed Aricept. She will not take it. She believes she has every side-effect from every drug that has ever been presribed for her except for her bp medication. I don't know how to help her and my Dad. Please give me some suggestions. Thank you.

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One day at a time is great....so is this too shall pass. We are in the final stage of Alzheimer's with mom. She is 80, and was diagnosed 8 years ago. She had been having issues for 3-4 years before that and the doctor kept saying it was normal aging. At this point she is entirely bedridden, even getting in the wheelchair is a challenge because of the contracting joints. We have to feed her, give her drinks, prompt her to swallow, change her, reposition her, give meds, bathe her....etc. Each stage has its own challenges. We, too, look for the humor and moments if joy. Yesterday during her bed bath, she was kind of "singing" so we started singing "You are my sunshine". She could get a word or two in there and smiled and had a great time! Sometimes you have to laugh at the negative too, we say a**hole is a term of endearment😂😂. For meds, I put the pill in the middle of a small milkyway candybar and mom eats it right up. I tried lots of different things but that works best. For ensure, we mix it in everything, smoothies, mashed potatoes, even as coffee creamer. Mom only weighs 95 lbs so she needs all the calories she can get. I have heard from others on another chat room that anything sweet, so add honey or syrup to meals. Whatever works is our philosophy! Hang in there!
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pkpurs - In answer to the Ensure problem. My mom HATES ensure as well but she LOVES Magic Cup. It is a frozen type of Ensure that most of the elderly seem to love. Don't tell her it's good for her, just let her know it's a special ice cream treat because really that's what it is, lots of nutrition and calories too.

I'm new to the group, been debating joining a support group. The stories make me so sad. My mom had a massive stroke in June of 2007 and lost use of her left side and is bedridden mostly, and has a lot of short and some long term memory loss. I sympathize with telling her things over and over and over and over again. Funny story you will all like....

We taped a football game for her months ago and there was a period of time where all she would watch at night would be the game, it kept her calm and every night she would say...does your sister know this game is on and I would tell her it's a taped game and every night she would say, oh no, it's not. lol It made me laugh every time.

Anyway, mom was in a nursing home (a bad one) for almost 3 months, then at my sister's for abou 4 months and now living with me (a little over 1 month) and it's absolutely mind boggling how hard this is, especially the nights, getting up in the middle of the night to frantic calling or a diaper change or a drink of water, etc. She is now on a list for nursing home and I cannot imagine how lost I would feel if that wasn't an alternative for us right now. I'm falling apart. How do all of you cope? Even with a strong faith in God, it's destroying my health, etc.

On top of all this, my dad had a stroke on Dec this past year (different state too) and we thought he would pull through but he just passed away after being in tremendous pain for a few weeks, died on Valentine's day which is also my mom's birthday. My mom and Dad had been divorced for a very long time, he was remarried and everything but my mom still feels like a widow now, she's forgotten anything bad he ever did, which is a good thing but makes her grieve a little more in her already currently depressed state.
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Onedayatatime says it all! I use to take it one day at a time, too. Now it is one minute to the next. I am the caregiver for my 87 year old mother in the late stages of Alzhiemers. I am an only child (how nice it would be if I was from a family of 10...lol)! She is living with me. I also have my mentally hadicapped daughter who is 33. She is a big help with grandma. She gets fed up and tells me "Mom, your mother is giving me a headache!". We laugh. One thing I have learned, even tho there really isn't anything funny about Alzhiemers, Is you have to laugh. At everything. Like mom meeting new people every day even tho it's the same people. My husband says she could hide her own Easter eggs. We own our house with her so we can't get any respite help or help with bathing, etc. She gets very hostile and beligerent with me. She cusses at me and trys to hit me when I make her take a bath. Its getting harder to get her to eat. She won't drink her Ensure. It has been several years since my husband and I have had a weekend or anything else for ourselves. I just keep telling myself that God doesn't give you anymore than you can handle, but sometimes I find myself questioning him. I feel so guilty that she is sooo unhappy all the time and that I can't do anything to make it better. She use to be such a happy person and so concerned about her appearance and now it's like pulling teeth just to get her not to wear the same clothes day in and day out. She even sleeps in her clothes if I don't make her change and sometimes it just isn't worth it!!
So, just hang in there and keep writing. It seems to help me read your comments and write mine.
I would also like to thank TBONEMAN for the help with bathing. I had my doctor write a "prescription" for taking a bath. That works some.....so thanks.
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I wish someone could tell us all the right thing to do. My parents have lived with my sister for 20 years, it was great when her kids were little. She had a built in baby sitter, etc. Now my mother is a challenge, actually, she has always been a problem. My mom is an "its all about me" person, always has been. She screams at my father and my sister every chance she gets, demeaning and insulting them. She is in the hospital now and has broken the neck of the roses my sister in law brought her, told my father to get a bear some friends brought her "to get that ugly thing out of my room" with them standing there, called my father at home and told him to get down to the hospital and clean her room, because it was filthy, she has also told him if he didnt come to hospital she would call the police on him (for what we dont know). We tried to get help from the nurse and doctor, they tell say she is fine and competent, and we are mean to her, (because she makes up stories about things everyone else does). We are not even sure if legally we can put her into a assisted living or retirement home because no one has power of attorney and she will not give it to anyone. Any suggestions would be appreciated. thanks!
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Hi Terri:

I don't know what to say ... I feel for you!

My mom is 80, no problems with alzheimers, and she is still fairly fit and active (most days); however, her health issues are increasing and so are the meds.

I find I am in demand when drives are needed to doctor's appointments, specialist's appointment, when there is a crisis (which is every other week it seems, she makes mountains out of mole hills), or looking after her pooch, and yet when she is ok and doing well I'm tossed aside!

My sister lives out of province and is no help at all ... I can't even unload on her, she just frustrates me, she lives her little life out where she is and no worries about emergency phone calls, demands on her time, etc., so I've stopped talking to her about how I feel. That's why I came to this web site, to hopefully find support and info, and unload now and again, and to help others in any way I can.

I have been my mother's caregiver now for about 15 years ... helped her through her husband's death, her depression (got her to counselling and involved in a grieving support group) and then her various illnesses ... inflammatory disease, high blood pressure, seizures, hip replacement, and help getting to doctor and filling prescriptions etc., moral support, and am always helping with one crisis or another as I mentioned ... including her putting off to the last minute getting prescriptions filled (on purpose - has other things to do, like shopping etc.!!) and then panic mode because doesn't have the the right meds, and/or health ramifications because of not taking enough ... going to emergency etc.!! I sometimes think she is someone who craves attention and sometimes creates situations to get it ?? Ya know ??

She can also be quite hurtful towards me, I'm not sure if she means it or not .. but she seems to enjoy it ... I am realizing she does not have good boundaries or respect for other's boundaries ... I am constantly having to make sure mine are good and strong!

Anyway, I'm glad I have found this site ... I watched the 'caregivers' video on here, did you? It was quite good, and helpful.

Wish I could offer you more help, advice, support ... if you have watched the video it may help you with some 'options' and 'self care' ... but I'm sure with Alzheimers it is much more difficult to deal with things. Is there an Alzheimers support group in your area that you could attend?? I'm going to check out support groups near me, for caregivers ....

Try to take good care of you!
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