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Dad lives with us and spends alot of time on his computer, especially social media. He has become obsessed with the Virus and listens to alot of hype. He keeps track of statistics, and writes down how many more people have died than the day before. Sometimes he can't sleep because he is worried about the nurses. (Both his wives were nurses.) My husband and I both work full time and cannot be there to entertain him. I have had chats with him that it might be a good idea for him to take a walk, sit outside on the patio, do a jigsaw puzzle, word search, record his memories on a video camera, etc. He swears he doesn't obsess, but he does. Our relationship has suffered tremendously since he moved in with us. I am his target now. I know nothing and am always wrong. I could go on for hours, but I'll narrow it down to: What is everyone doing to keep their loved ones occupied right now? Should I cut off his internet access?

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I would not recommend you cut off his internet. It will make things worse for him and for you. Right now, he is keeping himself busy and occupied with the news and with worrying. He has something to do since you can't be there to entertain him. Even if you don't work and stay at home all day, I seriously doubt that you will enjoy entertaining him. You will drive yourself crazy trying to do that.

This coronavirus pandemic will end eventually, hopefully soon, like in a month or so, I hope. For now, it's the source of his entertainment, don't take it away from him. If he's worried, then he's worried.

This pandemic is all over the news, it's everywhere, hard to avoid. It's sensationalized by the news media, like a bad car accident, so people tune in. Even if you try to persuade and distract him to do something else, he will probably return to looking at the bad car accident.

As for your relationship with him deteriorating, that is a different problem, a common problem that a lot of people on this forum discovered after moving their parents in to live with them. I was one of those people. Fortunately for me, I was able to move my mother out before she drove me insane.
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Reply to polarbear
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He sounds much like myself and I know charting and being fully informed is what I do, even if it's upsetting. I would NOT want anyone to take that away from me at any age in my life. I am almost 80.

What I try to do when it is really upsetting, is to look at the large number of people it is not infecting and the large number that survive. The percentage of deaths compared to those infected, etc. All that makes it more calming.

Maybe, when you get home you could sit down with him and go over those figures with him. Look at the cities the numbers are coming down in, etc.

Also, watch the amount of caffine and sugar he is on in his food and drink, to help calm him. Remind him of the polio days and how frightening that was, including the quarantines we had then, and we made it through.

Have him help you, make a batch of cookies, set the table, make the bed, unload the dryer, fold the wash. All things that will take up some of the worry time and he will feel so needed. Also try playing Big Band music from the 40s on your Alexa, if you have one. That music has done wonders in our house. It's happy music and calming for our age.

But charting is a part of him and that's ok, just guide him to the right charts. Blessings to you.
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Reply to Marylepete
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KaleyBug Apr 12, 2020
My dad is 96 and of sound mind. He follows the events daily also. I think it is good, he is informed and understands when we have to stretch our meals and supplies to limit my time going into the public.
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I just reread your question and I would like to add this to my former comments. I have learned when dealing with my husband to keep things very calm here, is how I react to things he says or does. So if I don't react, or how I react, it is amazing.

He is older then you, has experienced so much more, so I am sure he does or feels he does know more then you. That's ok. Give him credit for that and don't argue with him. Ask him more about it. It's how you react. It really works.
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Reply to Marylepete
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I m 86 years old. i have precious friends also in their 80's. We are all very strong and healthy mentally and physically.We are all very independent and well able to comfortably take care of ourselves. We do have precious friends and loved ones who respect us, value our opinions, ask us for advice, and enjoy our companionship as much as we do theirs. I have also had a very few acquaintances who politely and pityingly disrespect me just because of my age.How horrible it must be to become helpless, dependent, and to have everybody consider you in need of caretaking. I dread becoming like that.I hope i never become someone who needs to be "kept occupied" instead of valued and appreciated.I plead with everyone to accept people in their 80's as fully as you do younger people.Longtime drug use whether prescribed or illegal does do brain damage.I believe I am so mentally and physically healthy because I never took any vicodin, diuretics, statins, nor so called antidepressants. I threw away a lot of prescriptions without ever filling them. Metformin and biophosphonates are also dangerous.Every old person does not develope dementia. Every long term drug user does. May God have mercy!
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Reply to BobbieSena
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I don't know this man, and I don't want this statement to sound like a stereotype about men. Many of the guys I know, of all different ages, love stats of all kinds. Right now, for many of them, one of their favorite categories, namely sports, is completely unavailable to them. Another favorite category for some is the economy. The stock market is almost too volatile to even keep track of. Employment figures are alarming and they cut too close to home, particularly for any reasonably traditional male who would identify strongly with his job, and in his generation may well have been the primary breadwinner for the family. 
He's living through a personal, national, and international catastrophe, and he feels completely sidelined. Subconsciously he may feel that the only thing he can "do" is gather information. Oh, and the other things he can do are to worry and report. So that what he is doing. 
I like the idea of asking him for even _more_ detailed information. He could research stats about particular cities (including percentages of the populace, not just numbers of deaths). I would also ask him about recoveries, mild cases, asymptomatic cases, new research on treatments....If you can't beat him, it might be just as well to let him be your resident expert.
Down the line, if he continues to disrespect you in your own home, you may have other courses of action to ponder, but right now weathering the crisis of the hour is maybe about all you can do. If you are able to enlist any help from your husband by having him help with beguiling the hours cheerfully chatting about death and destruction with Dad, that could ease your mental exhaustion. And, you might mention to your husband that if Dad is particularly dismissive of you at some point, you would not be offended if your husband reminds Dad that "she may be your daughter, but she is _my_ wife, and _nobody_ treats my wife that way." 
These are just thoughts. 
 He's worried about the nurses, but, obliquely, he is probably worried about you and your husband too, because you go to work "out there, where the virus is." I would not take his computer away. Even if it seems obsessive, right now it is how he is processing,
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Reply to InItForGood
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I care for my 81 year old father and I think I obsess over the news more than he does and he’s the one with dementia 😁. It’s hard to not want to know what’s going on with this virus. My father is bored however. He’s used to being out and about. So I’ve been thinking of stuff we can do together around the house. I came up with taking pictures, gardening, taking the dog for walks, reading, and oh the other day we had a picnic in the back yard. That was really nice.
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Reply to Martz06
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Sunshine66 Apr 12, 2020
A picnic sounds like a great idea! Dad has several things to do, like jigsaw puzzles, computer solitaire, walk around the block, and he will sometimes video record memories. He has loved reading books, but hasn't been interested in reading them lately. He has shot alot of photographs over the years and will play with those on the computer as well. If I'm home, I try to get him to play dominoes, Yahtzee or Farkle with me. With all the options, he still manages to find the most negative Corona info out there.
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My husband is 84 and enjoys stamp collecting and spends his days on computer reading blogs about stamps and watching you tube videos about them. He buys some on eBay for his collecion. Maybe find something (else) that interests your dad and find sites about it on computer for him to get him started.
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Reply to AnneMcC
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Please don't cut off his internet access. It's a way for him to feel connected. But perhaps you can block the disturbing websites using parental controls. It may not be such a good time to take walks by himself if he is not capable of being careful about social distancing and hand washing, etc. It's a difficult time for all of us in this time of coronavirus. I've found with my husband (86 years old) and mother (96 years old) that I cannot suggest things for them to do. It has to come from them. When my mother was still verbal she often complained that I was trying to be the mother, meaning that I was being very controlling in her mind. She did not recognize that she was doing illogical things or was in a muddle about some things. I had to learn to accept her as she was and let her do what she wanted as long as she was not hurting herself or others, and things got better for us. You have a lot of responsibilities, so don't forget to take care of yourself. Stay well!
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Reply to NancyIS
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Why try to control his interests?
Maybe look at things in a different way, and just try and not let him or his interests bother you.
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Reply to kellidionne
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It seems to me the major caretaker is usually the one the patient finds most irritating. Try your best not to be discouraged. Perhaps you can get him involved with Ancestry.com, since he enjoys the computer. Tell him you need his help, make him think he is doing it for you. Begin a scrapbook of your own with pictures and stories of your own and tell him you really need his help.

Good luck
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Reply to SueEllen41120
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