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The people in the facility are attentive, try to redirect him but his constant mantra is he wants to go home. He’s domineering and has other mental deficiencies for which he’s being treated. I can’t visit except window visits; telephone calls are upsetting. I have friends now and family and am not bored. I tried home aides but he was uncooperative and rude. I find it hard to hear how unhappy he thinks he is. This is very upsetting. Should I just tolerate his behavior?

Does he need actual skilled nursing for medical issues? He might be better off in Memory Care, because they're far better trained to help someone like your dad than the staff at a SNF is.

My mom was in a SNF with dementia, severe edema, and heart failure (or so we thought at the time). She could still use a walker, but she just stayed in her room because everyone else there was either rehabbing from surgery for a short time or was a stroke patient in there for the long haul. She didn't want to be around "those people," and she darned near wasted away in self-imposed isolation.

I finally decided that of all her health issues, I wanted her mind to be treated the most aggressively, so I moved her to memory care. She wasn't allowed to stay in her room alone all day, there were all kinds of things to do that were stimulating, and even if she didn't want to do the activities, they had her sit at the table with those who were doing them. It made a HUGE difference in how she did overall.

Mind you, she's still there, and is in a wheelchair now, is incontinent, and is pretty much gone now cognitively. She's mostly blind and deaf and is on hospice care, but they still get her up and dressed every day, bring her out to be near the others, and talk to her, hold her hand, and engage with her. They take her outside to sit in the sun. All that matters -- a lot -- because she's treated like a whole person regardless of her mental capacity.

Many memory care places can do everything a resident needs until they die, so I'd check into that for your dad.
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Reply to MJ1929
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Every night when I speak with my mother who has moderately advanced dementia & lives in a Memory Care AL, I have to listen to her talk about needing to come to her mother's house & how she needs to take care of her children. Or how her mother has taken her money and left her none. Or asking how she will get to my house in the snow? Or how bad the food is and and and and and, ad infinitum. Do I have to tolerate her behavior? Only if I want to speak to her, otherwise, no, I don't. If I want to speak to my mother, then I have to tolerate the fact that she's burdened with dementia and therefore, so am I.

Everyone loses when dementia is involved, that's for sure.

Everyone is upset when dementia is involved, that's for sure also. You're upset, he's upset too, because confusion reigns supreme and nobody's sure WHAT is even happening anymore. It feels like we've all jumped down the rabbit hole sometimes. I hang up the phone some evenings and my head is pounding with a headache, that's what I'm left with after a 'conversation' with my mother.

It is what it is. Keep your calls brief and as pleasant as possible. Or limit the calls to once or twice a week, or whatever you can tolerate that doesn't leave YOU with a pounding headache or heartache you can't get rid of. Your husband can't help his behavior b/c dementia has ruined his life and his brain. That's the long and the short of it, unfortunately. The good news is that he's living somewhere now where teams of people can tend to his every need, so you KNOW he's well cared for and looked after 24/7, thank God.

Wishing you the best of luck finding a solution that works for YOU with this situation.
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Reply to lealonnie1
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Other than tolerating his behavior, what are your options? Did you have something in mind to address his wanting to go home and his unhappiness? Going home is not an option. His wanting to leave is quite common. I remember a lady in my wife's MC facility who always lugged her suitcare around with her just in case the opportunity arose. I wouldn't say you have to tolerate it, just try to understand his behavior. Dementia is unpredictable and I'm sure you'll witness other unusual behavior as time goes by. You seem to be pleased with the staff so trust in their ability and training that your husband is in good hands. You might want to educate yourself about his dementia so you will better understand its effect on patients. There are any books, websites and YouTube videos on dementia. Just Google "dementia".
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Reply to sjplegacy
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Dementia is a horrible desease. But its what it is. Its not his fault or your fault he has it. Dad may never be happy, but its what he needs now not what he wants. No matter what u do he may never be happy. The life he knew is no more. There is no way u can care for him 24/7, no way he can be left alone. If you have any guilt, it maybe because you have a life now. You deserve ur life. You are there for him just not doing the hands on. You tried other avenues it didn't work. Lots of others have made the same decision you have so ur not alone.

So, how do you deal with him? First you cannot reason with him and because of his short memory loss telling him you don't want to hear it anymore will not work. COVID, for some forum members with LOs in care, has been a Godsend when dealing with difficult LOs. Has given them some space. How long has he been there? If not long, maybe step back. Let the staff do their jobs. He needs to rely on them. The desease will progress and maybe somewhere along the line he will forget about home. You may want to ask about something to keep him calmer. Phone calls you don't have to answer. Pick and chose. Hang up when he gets demanding. Walk away when he gets demanding. No, he probably won't learn but u don't need to subject yourself to it. It really isn't good for him to get agitated either.

One thing that helped me is think of him as a small child. Which as the brain dies he will become. A small child wants it their way. A small child wants to go home because its familiar. (Usually when they want to go home it maybe their childhood home not always the last one they lived in) Your Dads mind is broken. Thoughts go in and out. He has no idea what is happening to him. His world may be a scary place. But, you can't really do anything to ease that.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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There is no other choice, is there? I would keep visits short, calls short, and move on with your life now he is safely in placement which you trust, a great mercy for you both. This isn't unusual. You understand that it is not really in his control. Keep calls short and work on their being somewhat training exercises in that bad behavior gets a short and sweet call. Good luck.
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psuskind1 Feb 23, 2021
No there is no other option so I just have to get elephant skin now
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You are doing the very best you can for him. If he is not happy with things where he's at, yet you know he's being well taken care of, then you are just going to have to let these things roll off your back. You could worry yourself to death (literally) about this if you let yourself. He is safe and well taken care of, so if he starts to complain, just tell him you really don't want to hear it anymore, and if need be, cut your visits short, along with your phone conversations. Wishing you the best.
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psuskind1 Feb 23, 2021
Thank you. I know this to be so but I need to stop being manipulated
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Many seniors want to stay in their homes and when that is no longer an option, they continuously long for home. My dad took Zoloft for anxiety and depression his last years, it was a big help. It didn’t completely take away his emotions but calmed him and helped him be more upbeat. You can try this or something like it, along with redirecting the conversation to lighter topics. No need to listen to an endless loop of the same thing, when he persists after you’ve listened once, if changing the subject doesn’t work, tell him you’ll speak later when he’s feeling better
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Reply to Daughterof1930
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psuskind1 Feb 23, 2021
Thank you.
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