Could mentally attacking your caregiver be a sign of dementia or something similar? - AgingCare.com

Could mentally attacking your caregiver be a sign of dementia or something similar?

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my mom attacks me viciously with insults. She's always had a touch of it in her but now it's non stop. sometimes she likes to act like she's disguising it but she know she's not. When I call her out on it I get different reactions. This behavior is getting out of control.

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Michelle, you need to get her to a doctor. Look for a Geriatrician, if possible, because they specialize in the elderly. A regular GP may not recognize dementia. Check with the people at the day center for recommendations for a doctor who understands the elderly. Contact your local "Area Agency on Aging." they probably have a social worker who could advise you. Are you in Camden County NJ? I found this: http://www.camdencounty.com/government/county-services/senior-services

At the least, she is probably suffering from anxiety and depression. In men, depression is often expressed as anger, not sadness. That might be what she is doing. Whatever you do, don't tell her the medicine is for mental problems. Tell her it's a 3rd generation pain medication, or for her blood pressure.

Of course you can ask at the senior center! Probably everyone on the staff has experience with dementia, and can offer their considered opinion.
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Wow i can't believe how much it means just to have this question acknowledged let alone people are actually trying to help. Thank you all so much. Technically, there isn't anything wrong with her. I took care of my grandfather who had cancer until he died and she was terrified to be alone. And her judgement is questionable. But again, it could be grief , depression,loneliness. Her husband and best friends have passed away in the last few years. Her kids are absolutely useless. What she expects from me is not only unreasonable its impossible. And now it's also out of control. I honestly cant tell if she's completely coherent or not. I know that must sound crazy but i can't. And Nobody else is around long enough to have an opinion that i could consider. I think I'm in way over My head here but i don't know where to turn. I did get her into a senior center thats at least 10 hours a week. I feel that is a good step but that is strictly social so unless they offer an opinion i can't really ask. Again, thank you so much for responding
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The caregiver is the one who is there all the time so the easiest to attack. Agree with everyone else.
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I think sometimes they are just angry at the loss of independence, health, memory etc and they take it out on the caregiver- irrationally- because you are the one providing the help and therefore confirming the condition(s). As someone here once said to me "the one standing closest to the fire is the easiest one burned."
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OK, thanks for more details. Why did you move in if she doesn't have any impairments? In what sense are you her "cargiver"? Do you cook, clean, help her bathe, manage her medications, take her to the doctor, what?

It really sounds like she needs a thorough evaluation. The behaviors you describe could be symptoms of dementia, but not necessarily so. How is her memory? How is she at making decisions?

Is this attacking you a new behavior? Or has it been going on since you moved in?

On the face of it, if she has no impairments she shouldn't need a caregiver. If she resents you the best course of action might be to move out and just visit her regularly. But I suspect that if you consider yourself a caregiver there really is more going on with Gram than nasty comments to you.
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My computer has a mind of its own. She is my grandmother, I moved in here to when her husband died - july 2015. She is NOT diagnosed with any impairments. Her behavior has been up and down - from childlike to paranoid to normal to crazy and do it all over again. BUT... she's been through an awful lot mentally. After her husband of 62 years died all of her kids have abandoned her. Not completely but I spent a year begging them to help and they just wouldn't. There were times she sat alone for weeks at a time. So I try to consider all of that. But no matter what's going on she's been coming at me like I'm the one she resents. And the reason's are insane. And she'll back them up at the time too Then I swear it's like she doesn't remember. I can't tell if it's a game or she truly resents me or if she needs help. But we are at a crossroads and I have to do something. So just looking for some guidance. Thank you so much for responding.
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Michelle, your profile says your mother has dementia. This post seems to question that. Has she been diagnosed? Are you wondering if this is a symptom? Why does she need a caregiver? That is, does she have impairments in addition to the vicious attacking behavior?

Are you living in her house? I see that you are caring for your grandmother as well. Do the three of you live together?

A little more detail will help us respond more specifically.
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