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My father is living with us, and he does and says things that are extremely irritating. Usually, I let it go and say nothing, but the last week, he is totally setting my teeth on edge and I’ve drawn his attention to things he’s done or said (BIG mistake) we’ve had two arguments this week. Just little things. He’s a gaslight extraordinaire! I feel like I’m the monster.



My husband tolerates him for my sake, but he doesn’t like to see me upset. My siblings don’t care if it doesn’t interfere with them getting their inheritance, so I tell them nothing. I did something I haven’t done in ages last night, I just burst into tears. I could feel my chest getting tight and I thought I was going to have a panic attack. I know my dad has dementia but I’m afraid I don’t take that into account as much as I ought to.



Thanks for listening.

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Here is another rule for dealing with dementia patients who are driving you to have panic attacks in your own home:

Get them placed in Memory Care Assisted Living asap and tell the greedy siblings you don't care about their "inheritance", just about dad getting great care and you living your life in peace and harmony.

If they disagree with your logic, have THEM come pick dad up. You'll have his bags packed and ready to go by 3pm.

My mother lived her best life in Memory Care Assisted Living and I was able to maintain my sanity at the same time. I wound up with no inheritance as a result, but would play my cards exactly the same way again if I had the opportunity to do so (God forbid). Trying to care for a demented elder at home often reaches the point of insanity, as you are seeing firsthand. And nobody "gets it" until they're in the trenches 24/7 dealing with the myriad issues that go along with the horrible condition. Never in a million years could I do it. Rethink this living situation because it's costing you your LIFE for the next who knows how many years, as dad's dementia worsens.

Best of luck
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Favegirl1 Sep 16, 2022
I told my sister last night that he will be going into care if he continues to upset me. I told her that I don’t care about the money, which I don’t. If she is so worried about losing the inheritance, take the money out of my third to put him into care. She didn’t reply to this. She just panics at the thought of having to lose any money. My Dad is not in a pension so any costs will come out of his estate. If I were an only child, he would’ve been in care as soon as Mum was laid to rest. My sister said that maybe we can have a talk at Christmas to see how things have progressed and make a decision then. But believe me I already know the answer.
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Let me share.
The endless lies, fabrications, and flat out fantasies never stopped. Once in a restaurant, my mom quite loudly LOUDLY told me she was having sex with her fiancee. No problem except she was not engaged, the supposed fiance did not exist, and he was invisible. Her endless stories were nonstop. There was no more conversation possible - the man next store was an ex-priest, the man across the street sends her coded messages with his car dash lights every morning, and the woman on the other side was beaten by her husband.

I know what the experts say - smile and nod, say 'really', go gray rock, but I could not handle it. All we ever talked about was endless fantasy about her. She began to lie about her age. AND the lies were never enough, she demanded that we agree with each lie. [was she a controlling woman in real life? YOU BETCHA] Once, in utter despair, I brought up the US Census online for the year she was born to show her age, her name, and her entry. She said the US Census was wrong.

This I could not do anymore, I accept an objective reality, as in gravity works, for example. I was simply not the person for her. I could not do it . Frankly, I did not want to do it. I was either furious or bored. For example, she let my brother die in her house and did nothing to get him help. The coroner told me he had been dead for days.

She told others that actually he moved and is in a rock band in Utah!!!

Looking at what I have written, I can see the psychology in her stories - keep her safe, keep her loved, keep her from guilt - I get that. I just could not handle it.

My psychology could not participate and I guess I did not love her enough to even want to try. Of course, I visited less and less. I talked less and less. Took medication before each visit. Left as soon as I could.

To you I offer - it will only get worse. See your doctor and get chemical help. If you have religious faith, use it. MOVE your father into a facility, if possible. You have a right to sanity. Just because his brain is gone doesn't mean you have to be damaged too.

Everyone here will be very helpful and give you tips. Just know that some of us could not manage the tips, and were near utter despair by the constant assault on reality. You are not alone.
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Favegirl1 Sep 20, 2022
That’s quite humiliating for you. My Dad isn’t that bad but when we go to
the medical center or in public he does comment on how people look. One woman had a lot of rings on her her fingers. He didn’t like that and said how ridiculous she looked. I told him loudly that he was ridiculous. The woman gave him a filthy look. Then another woman was unattractive. “Fancy having to live with that” I told him to shut up” So now I take him nowhere.
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“Yes but unfortunately they have already let me know that they refuse to do this. So I’m trapped.”

Your siblings need to be told that they step up and help and maybe work something out so each one takes him for a few months at a time, or you will place Dad and that’s that. To hell with what they want at this point. Your life matters too.
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Reply to Caregiverstress
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Favegirl1 Sep 20, 2022
Thanks for your kind words. ❤️❤️
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Sounds like it's time to find him somewhere else to live if his being there effects you and your husband so much.
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Favegirl1 Sep 15, 2022
You think??
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Favegirl1:

You are not trapped. Decision must be made today to place your father into a facility. Inheritance happens after someone dies. Unfortunately, his money pays for his care until he dies. Sorry, if his money gets spent down to Medicaid level, nothing is left for inheritance, and in most cases is not. Also, you and your family should not be personally or financially burdened, nor yourself be manipulated. That's what a facility is for: to care for anyone no longer able to care for themselves.
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Oh the triggers. That's been an issue for me as well.

I think that we get into trouble when we expect that we can re-orient our parent and then they'll realize the error of their ways and correct, or behave. When they can't or won't and it drives us crazy.

No one can push our buttons like a parent because they're the ones who installed them.

My mother will deny deny deny and always has so why stop now?
All of my life she has dismissed me and my feelings so why stop now?

She spits bits of food onto the floor instead of putting it into a napkin. I used to fuss at her but now I say nothing and clean it up. She likes grapes and she will spit out the skin onto the table or she'll wipe it under the table like a child would do. I just clean it up.

She's been living with me for 5 years and it's taken awhile not to get triggered by everything she does.
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againx100 Sep 20, 2022
Wow this must take a lot of determination to deal with her spitting food on the floor! Yikes. My mom has some yucky habits and does not keep her hands clean, licks her fingers at the dinner table all the time and it makes me CRINGE! I've given up on reminding her that she has a NAPKIN right next to her plate that would be useful instead of licking.
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I sure hope you can get a break!

What wasn’t ideal but helped me around my mom who talked INCESSANTLY was what I call , “ practicing non-listening.” People who love to talk for talking sake and not conversation tend to not notice you’re not paying a whit of attention. I would turn up the volume of my own thoughts and throw in a few “ Hmmms” at random as a bonus. I know this sounds cynical but I did claw back some of my own brain space this way.

Good luck !!
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Geaton777 Sep 15, 2022
Agreed. My protocol is to just keep saying, "yes, yup, a huh", repeat. It doesn't matter that what they say is not the truth or inappropriate. No amount of correction will bring permanent change to the behavior. Their brains are broken. It is not possible for them and cruel to expect it.

When my Aunt launches into some unwanted talk, I tap her on the chest (to get her full attention) and point to something in the room and (with a smile if I can muster it) make a random comment. This 99% of the time breaks her fixation on a thought and then I can redirect the conversation or or activity orr at least alter it.
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Its not a family decision. Dad needs to be placed period. You need to tell your siblings that you no longer will care for Dad. Your husband needs to back you up in this. Christmas is 3 months away.

In the meantime, Grey Rock him. Only talk to him when you need to. Walk out of the room if he gets started. When sister said something about Christmas you should have then said, with a raised voice NO! I need a break NOW! Really not a break, I need him gone. Seems Sister holds the financial strings? Again, maybe DH telling sister "He needs to get out of my house. I am tired of the way he treats my wife Dementia or no Dementia. So make it happen"
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Favegirl1 Sep 17, 2022
My brother is the POA and holds the financial strings but he also earns very good money ( over $200k yearly) My sister’s husband is a defense attorney and earns good money. So imo, the more money people have, the greedier they are.
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Put him in respite care now…..see how he does and how you do.
As far as correcting? That is an interesting point. When I was caring for mom and living together, I was overwhelmed with her thoughts that were derogatory and totally false. I corrected her a great deal because the imprint was so negative and it would make her even more upset with the ugly thoughts and words that she said. I tried to ignore and not respond to her specific statement and tell her what I knew which was positive and uplifting. She wore me down!

She went to respite for 3 months so I could have some time to see my husbands family and our grands. She loved it!!!! I didn’t put a lot of personal items in her home but enough to make her comfortable and got an alexa show so I could drop in and talk to her face to face. I also got Blink camera so I could see how she was doing or to run down the situations she described to me (which were all in her mind). She was content that I “ran” down each complaint and that she was safe and I was glad she told me. (By seeing what was actually going on with the camera, I was able to make up a conversation that I had with the staff and all was okay now.). Prior to the camera, I was concerned about calling the facility as much as mom dictated because it was false!
Respite him now and at Christmas, go see him with your sister and let her see how he is doing. If your sister wants to take him, then she can do it whenever is convenient to you and you will not be waiting on her or hearing about why it is delayed ;)
Btw, you teach people how to treat you!
FYI, If he is in MC, there are more staff for care. My mom is in AL and not quite ready for MC. I got her a aide to help her with showers and 2 meals a day; escorting her to events, walking, socializing, and drinking fluids. I paid good money for the AL extra care and it was worthless! Mom would refuse or delay and it wasn’t done and they still took the money BUT they didn’t tell me that mom was declining. The aide I got was cheaper than paying for their services and that person communicates with me. I have the aide text me at the end of the shift every day she works with a brief overview. Example: “shower day, mouth care, ate good at both meals, walked and drank 2 bottle of Propel, she was in good spirits”.
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Hi Favegirl! My mom with mild/moderate dementia lives with me and hubby so I totally feel your pain! My mom and I used to get into arguments before her issues progressed to dementia. We'd not talk for a week! I didn't really mind cuz our conversations barely qualify as such. I also felt like a monster for being mad at an elderly woman with issues! It's so hard.

My hubby is a saint. He helps out and will make dinner for them when I am babysitting our grandkids until 8 or 9 PM. He chats with her like I am unable to do. They're both storytellers where I am more of a conversationalist - back and forth interaction is what I much prefer. And I never get it with mom. Just stories I've heard 100+ times before.

I KNOW so many things that I shouldn't do, shouldn't think, etc. BUT it's virtually impossible for me to do so. Sometimes I try to correct her and catch myself thinking "what are you doing??? Just let it go." I keep working on it. Ignoring the weird and annoying things. Hard for me.

Sorry that your siblings are hung up on the inheritance. It's not theirs to have. It's for the person that earned it. So, talk to your siblings and tell them that you are DONE. Tell them that if they'd like to be involved in the process, that'd be great. But within 30 days you need an answer to which path is going to be taken. Or you will make the decision yourself.

Good luck
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Favegirl1 Sep 20, 2022
That’s extremely tempting advice. Thankyou
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