I recently lost my brother. My Mom with very moderate dementia/alzheimers does not know. Should she be told? - AgingCare.com

I recently lost my brother. My Mom with very moderate dementia/alzheimers does not know. Should she be told?

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She has periods of knowing who has passed and who has not---even her own husband.

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In my situation my brother had passed while my mother was in the care home. She also had advanced dementia. We, as a family, decided not to tell mom about her son. Not only would she forget soon after she was told but we didn't want her to re-live the sorrow again and again. Since my brother lived far away, mom hardly saw him. He was diabetic and was frequently receiving dialysis. When she asked about him we just told her he was doing ok and taking care of his health. It seemed ok with her.
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My mum has advanced dementia.
she is living in a care home now and is happy and comfortable.
My sister has had cancer for about 6 months and is nearing the end of her life and my family members have insisted that mum be told about her daughter.
What they do not see is after they leave and go home mum lets me have all guns blazing, so i feel that this will end her life also
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One of the ways the human mind deals with death is the I initial shock, sadness, anger or whatever emotions death may bring to the surface is felt and then accepted. Over time we never get over the death but the sharp knife of it is not there as much. In most cases acceptance takes it's place.

I would think with dementia and not being able to process the death and recover but being told over and over again would be almost cruel. Just my take on it. You are not trying to hide the fact of her son's death but sparing her reliving the initial shock each time she is told.

Or at least that is how I would view it. Also, I am sorry about the loss of your brother. Take care
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Depending on your religious beliefs, it might be appropriate to say, if she asks about him, to simply say "You'll be seeing him soon." or something similar. You never can tell--my MIL, toward the end, was seeing her mother and sister, who had already passed.
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It sounds like her memory is beyond the moderate dementia stage. If she had early or moderate dementia, I think it would be good to tell her. But if the dementia is advanced to the point you would have to tell her repeatedly, then it would be a hurtful thing to do. From what your wrote, your mother's dementia is more advanced, so I wouldn't tell her if it were me.
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"Therapeutic Lying" - give her what she wants to hear, because she will not remember in a little while. She will only remember she is sad, and won't know why. Love her enough to sacrifice your own grief for her well being. Yes, it's hard, but it really is a medical condition you are working with and against.
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Daughter, don't drive yourself crazy over this. If you tell your Mom, she will be incredibly sad AND may not remember the next day. Would you then tell her each time she forgets and have her spiral into deep depression? If she asks for him, he is at work, a sports activity or whatever would be appropriate. And, of course, he sends his love. He'll be here soon ---- IF she asks. My personal feeling, why cause such sadness when it would have to be repeated. Don't spend your energy angsting over this. Just love her and enjoy her for now. AND, sorry about your brother.
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Thanks texarkana...my other siblings have echoed the same feelings. It's just hard. I wrestle with it.
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I will probably get fussed at for this, this is just my 2 cents worth. Unless she asks, I wouldn't say anything.From what you stated sounds like her short term memory is going.If she is in a peaceful state at present I wouldn't upset the apple cart. Let sleeping dogs lie, etc. I personally wouldn't fault you for not telling her,especially upsetting news like this.
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