What do I do if my husband thinks there are additional people in the house when there is no one?

Follow
Share
This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
5

Answers

Show:
My FIL will say there's a "little girl" who is moving his stuff around. We're not sure how old this girl is, but he's adamant about the little girl. We get him out of the room--because if you point out there's no little girl in the room, he insists she hides--and one of us will go in and come back out a minute later saying we chased her out and told her not to come back.

The little girl shows up every few weeks. So do the house full of co-workers and the work he's "supposed to do." We just roll with it. It's more upsetting to him, and us, to confront him about it. For us, it works to have us chase them out.

It's difficult to deal with an elder's altered sense of reality. The best we can do is try to understand and find ways to center them again.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

My mother was convinced the neighbors 10yr old grandson was coming into the house and moving her stuff. For instance, a deck of cards that were on the shelf had been moved to a drawer. OMG, they're cleaning the house, this must stop! I changed the locks and put in other security measures, but she was convinced he was still getting in. Interestingly, he never grew up. 8 years later and that same little boy is still getting in.
Educating myself on dementia helped me learn new ways to handle the problem. Mom never remembers our discussions on this issue and I often feel like a broken record.
It is incredibly tough and I feel your pain. The situation is what it is and the only thing you can change is your self. Have you sought out any help? A talk therapist can help immensely.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Benign delusions do not need treatment. Only if the delusion is disturbing to the person with dementia does it need to be addressed.

If your husband sees/believes that extra people are in the house and he is pleased to have visitors, you can just go along and then try a distraction. "Visitors? Well I am glad I filled all the candy dishes yesterday! Speaking of dishes, will you help me unload the dishwasher?"

If he is fearful of the extra people, then an approach like geewiz suggests may be effective. It doesn't always have to be that elaborate (it is hard to leave the house in the middle of making dinner) but basically you want to assure him that he is safe and you will take care of the problem.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Could you say a little more about what is happening?

And what are your major concerns about it? Are you anxious about how your husband is feeling in himself, or about what he might do about the mysterious extra people, or just wondering why he thinks this?
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

This is a common phase for dementia patients. I found some good ideas on the alzheimers website. Since this thought process is your husband's reality, don't dismiss it or disagree with him. You might remove him from the house for a short period of time and make a (make believe) call to the police or a trusted friend and ask them to evict the other people. When you return, you can check out the house together (if he is mobile) and comment about what a great job the police/friend did in removing those other people. It worked for me, hope it does for you. Thankfully, this period was very brief for my Mom.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

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