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Mom is 89 and has been in MC for 3 weeks after 2 rough months with my wife and I. She has early stage dementia and though docs find nothing wrong physically, she feels sick all the time and complains of abdominal pain and constipation. She will have diarrhea and then complain of constipation an hour later. This was the case when she was living with us and has continued at MC. I am there twice and day, and she still calls 6+ times a day to complain about feeling sick or issues with her bowels or to complain about the caregivers. I always tell her to contact the nurses who have learned to maybe give her a little prune juice and wait, because the complaint will always change before too long. She is on an anti-depressant and anxiety meds.


She is an only child and I am her only living relative - as she always reminds me. She won't participate in any activities at MC and I think she would like nothing better than to be sick in bed with me by her bed side all the time. We were in the ER for 6 hours last week with a bleeding hemorrhoid. Sitting in the waiting room for 5 hours was the only time she didn't complain and she was sure they would admit her and find ovarian cancer (long story). She was disappointed to be cut loose with a Rx for some cream after a quick exam. She immediately demanded to come to spend the night at our house to see her cat and cried all the way back to the MC when I wouldn't say yes, It is hard not to lose my temper at times. I know she is sick, but I also feel played.


I realize she has not been there that long and I feel uncomfortable with curtailing my visits or her call privileges at this point.


I know a lot of this is common, but I just need to vent after 4 calls so far between my lunch and evening visits. Any advice is welcome. Thanks.

I would post a note where she can read it from her bed and/or chair she usually sits in while calling you that says "Mom, I will call you between 12:30p and 1:00p this afternoon. I will be there to see you after work around 6:00p." and then I would block her number. The staff should be able to call you if there are any serious issues you need to know about.
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I know how frustrating that kind of thing can be. I'd probably keep check with the doctor to see if her meds are working. Sometimes, meds for depression and anxiety need to be adjusted. I would stay on top of that.

But, as far as the calls, I'd likely restrict that to reasonable times. Repeated calls are not really helping her and certainly not helping you. She likely forgets that she's already spoke with you. That's what happened with my LO in AL, before MC. She'd call after 30 minutes and have no idea that she had already called me 5 times that day. It was just too much.

I might discuss it with the facility. They know how to reach you if it's urgent. I'd have any calls set to call you on a separate number that you don't answer, but, she can leave a message. And perhaps the message is a personal one for her, that you are not available, but will call her later. Then, you can call at a time that works for you.

If the visits are too much or she is not adjusting to the MC, I'd consult with the MC staff and get a plan. My LO's MC asked that I not visit for 10 days to allow her to adjust. I did and when I called to check on her, they said she's fine. Doing great. And, she was.

Eventually, my LO was not able to use a phone and even forgot about calling. So, this will be a phase for her.
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