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My MIL is a very youthful 87. She drives and lives in her own condo. She appears to be healthy and is very active. Recently, Mom has made up stories. She swears that I didn't invite her to my own Mom's 90th birthday party (a big deal at a park venue with all my Mom's children and grandchildren, etc.) and that she is "still upset about it." The fact is that I would not dream of excluding my MIL from any celebration. She was invited a few weeks before the party. Both my MIL and Mom have birthdays within 2 days of each other and we often celebrate the BDays together. This year I took my MIL for lunch the day before her BDay. A couple days before the party my MIL phoned and said that her friends were having a party for her and she wouldn't be able to make it to my Mom's party - she was going out of town for the weekend. I even have this all written down in my agenda - where I keep track of everything. Yesterday Mom (MIL) sent my blood pressure through the roof! I had her here for lunch and then we went for pedicures. THEN she made the comment about still being upset that we didn't invite her to the party. AND she said that my husband (her son) told her that she wasn't family and the party was only for family. There was another recent episode where my MIL told me that my daughter told her she would take her out to lunch and she was all ready - but my daughter never came. After yesterday, I checked with my daughter and she had never made a date - just said that she would get back to my MIL and they would figure out a date. There was also an episode with a missing gold necklace. She was convinced that her neighbor had taken it. I had her check everywhere... Then I took her to a couple jewelry stores to get an estimate for the lost necklace. She received money for the necklace through her insurance AND THEN found the necklace in her safe. And the time she told me that she gave my husband $1,000 from the above insurance money - and he told her not to tell me. To start with, my MIL wouldn't even treat anyone to lunch let alone give someone that much money! And we have all the $$$ we need so I know that my husband would never take this money from his Mom, and especially would never tell my MIL not to tell. As you can see, she tells everyone everything anyways! I don't know what to do. On the surface, anyone would think she is amazing for her age. She is absolutely convinced that these stories are true. Yesterday, when I swore on my grandchildren's lives that I would never have left her out of the party, she said "Well, you can believe what you want but it happened" - and then she said that she probably went to see her friends because she wasn't invited to the party! It was like she didn't remember that her friends invited her to stay with them for her birthday. I am going crazy... Is anyone experiencing this with a mother or MIL who appears totally normal and healthy? I should add that my husband has a sister and brother who live in another State who share Power of Attorney. I am reluctant to say anything to them as if Mom finds out it will only make things worse.

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If she believes that her version is the truth, it is really a terrible waste of your anergies and emotional resources for you to try to convince her of anything different.
Is there anyone around her with whom you might be able to compare notes as to whether she shares her “facts” with others?
My grandmother started this way many years ago, at the beginning of a terrible end of life experience with dementia. It is obviously excruciatingly uncomfortable for the target(s) of the untruths.
For now, all of you that are in her immediate circle will need to compare notes and document incidents and dates.
Whether sooner or later your documentation will be useful when a formal assessment is done to determine her competence.
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Dragyn Oct 28, 2018
Thank you Ann. And I will make sure that everything is documented and when I plan something with Mom (my MIL), that it is written on her calendar and that others are aware of our plans. I suspect that my Mom's birthday is marked on her calendar as I usually ask her to write anything down that is planned. She has never been really organized.
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Dear Dragyn, just reading your response to my first post, it sounds as though you are fine with your own side of the family, just make sure that the same thing is on track for your husband's side. MIL's own relations are often where the problems come. Yours, Margaret
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Is it the POA folks who have noticed some odd behaviors?

I hope so, because it sounds like MIL's reasoning skills have left the building.

Yes, make sure that you and your husband have each other's backs here; watch Teepa Snow videos on how to respond (not react!) to folks with dementia.
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Dragyn Oct 28, 2018
Thank you Barb. I will make sure that I watch the videos... I am grasping at straws right now as I suspect that this situation is not going to get any better.
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When people think of early dementia they think of trouble remembering names or appointments, but with some kinds of dementia the signs are more subtle. I don't imagine there is anything you can do at this point except read everything you can about various dementias and grow a thicker skin; if this is early dementia the finger pointing is likely to escalate as she attempts to explain her lapses. If you can convince her to switch her doctor to a geriatrician that would be more alert to the possibility that might also be helpful.
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Dragyn Oct 28, 2018
Thank you... I had considered the idea of a geriatric doctor but I don't think Mom would be receptive right now. She really thinks that I have it wrong but there are others who know that she was invited - and are familiar with the other episodes.
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Assuming that you aren’t going potty yourself, there seem to be two possible explanations. One is that your MIL is doing this deliberately, knows that she is lying, and is trying to get at you because she resents you and perhaps her son as well. You would need to think about whether this is possible. The other explanation is that this is an unusual first sign of dementia. Clearly, dementia would be hard to diagnose just from this symptom. In either case, you aren’t going to change her story by giving her your own version.

Perhaps the best you can do is to protect yourself and your husband. Let other relevant people know that you are having difficulties, and ask if they check the record with you. Also could they let you know if they see anything themselves that concerns them. Your husband needs to back you up. This is the sort of thing that can create real difficulties in a family, particularly if anyone can see any reason for MIL’s stories to be true (eg money or revenge of some sort). Trying to avoid family conflict is well worth aiming for. ‘Concern’ is a more constructive position to take than ‘offended dignity’. What a difficult situation to cope with!
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Dragyn Oct 28, 2018
Thanks for your response Margaret. I am totally convinced that Mom (MIL) believes what she is saying. She wouldn't deliberately hurt us. And yes, my Mom, sister, daughter are all aware of what is happening. My sister and brother-in-law - even though they live some distance away - have notice some odd behaviour.
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