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I am at home with her full time and she can not stay by herself, so my husband and I thought it would be good for her to go to a day center (activity center) two days a week so that I can have a break and spend some quality time with my grandkids, they are all under 7. But when I took MIL for her first day visit for only 4 hours, she said she hated it and she cried the whole evening after I brought her home. She also was in a nursing center for 3 weeks for rehab and called crying everyday but me and my husband enjoyed our break from her. When we decided to go on vacation and take her for a week, she had me so tense from complaining the whole time that I was ready to come home. Please help?

I am a retired preschool teacher. When parents brought a child in that was antisocial and cried, we would engage the child with other children, provide fun activities, acknowledge their sadness but not dwell on it. We would reassure them that Momor Dad would be coming soon to pick them up. They started school in early September and we said if they were still having histrionics at Halloween, we’d call a meeting with the parents. I don’t remember ever having to call a meeting.

Check out this daycare in action to see how they are treating Mom. You’re allowed. She may be trying to put the proverbial “dart in your heart” by carrying on pitifully when she comes home. She’s playing you. Don’t let it get to you and do bring her back for the next scheduled daycare session. When she realizes this is her new reality she may just decide the heck with it and join in.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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She is on multiple medications for anxiety and has been making excuses for needing to always be with us no matter what. The excuses range from men might try to touch her to people look at her weird. We know her dementia has alot to do with it but it is driving me crazy and my husband works long hours and doesn't like to talk about it. I've given up my job, friends and time to myself and my kids to take care of her and of course everything that she doesn't like is my fault.
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Reply to Momof5and8
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Your grandchildren are only going to be young once.

Has she been seen by a geriatric psychiatrist? She sounds depressed, anxious and agitated. All pretty common for dementia patients. There are no meds that cure dementia, but there are meds for some of the symptoms that are caused by the fact that their brains are broken.

Your MIL's happiness does not trump yours.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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Did your MIL give you reasons she hated the activity center? Could she be concerned rehab and activity center are NH where you plan to leave her? New places and uncertainty are stressful for dementia patients. They often cannot remember your assurances that you will be picking them up in a few hours. Is MIL taking something for anxiety? Maybe you could discuss with the doctor taking a little more on the days she visits the activity center? Maybe give her a index card with a "I will be picking you up at noon" message on it?
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Reply to TNtechie
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Why does your MIL have veto power over your life? Caregiving should be a partnership, a two-way street. Your MIL has needs, and you do as well. You are both equally important persons deserving of respect and consideration.
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Reply to SnoopyLove
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