Mom is 95 and has dementia. I am her daughter 68 years old and have been with her, living with her, helping deal with issues for 15 years. She has had dementia about two years. She refused to use her walker and cane in the house and was a high fall risk. She wouldn’t listen to much of anything I would say because I am the daughter. She could walk upright, dress herself, and sponge bath herself. She has a little dog they are very close and she walks her and feeds her.

Her memory is going pretty good, sometimes has a hard time forming sentences, had anger issues from time to time. Someone was supposed to be with her all of the time, and I found that hard to do. I tried bringing in Caregiver’s a few times which really made her mad. I decided to place mom in a smaller group home where she could have better one on one attention. I got her there for lunch, with her dog and told her I’ve made arrangements for her to stay here where she can be taken care of better. If mom would’ve stayed home with me she would’ve ended up spending her last days in the hospital, I just know it.

Now when I go visit mom and her little dog, she tells me she hates me, cries the entire time, even hit me twice, swearing at me that I should be ashamed of myself. How could I do this to her, why can’t I go home, I want to go home and our visit is just horrific. I can’t take her anywhere because she will think she’s going home. So when I visit she cries and that’s all she talks about the entire time there’s no visiting or talking about anything but that. I tell her it’s because I love her and care about her that I placed her here. Of course she does not believe me, our visits are dreadful. Days before I visit her my stomach is in knots, it’s very depressing and I have such a sense of dread seeing her. I just don’t know what to do when she starts in with this behavior. When she sees me she gets so upset. My friend Told me to tell my mom please stop saying these things and if she continues tell her I’m sorry I have to leave. So virtually my visit would be in five minutes because she starts immediately with the why can I go home. It’s madness. Right now I see her once a week and that even makes me feel a lot of anxiety days before I just don’t know what to do. Seeing me upset her so much. Do I wait a while, or get up and leave when she acts out ? I just don’t know what to do anymore and get very depressed about it all.

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Oh boy, I hear you... It is so hard to hear, when you are the one that was giving the care!!! My mom does the same thing, when she starts, you need to be firm & tell her you are going to leave if she is going to be abusive. I know it is hard, but it has helped. They love the company, but you are taking the brunt of it all. I am going through the same thing, I never know if it will be a good visit or tears & telling me how horrible I am! I am trying to cut back my visits, so she can get more of a schedule going for activities ( she does not remember that she goes to them). She gets upset when she sees me bringing in her clean laundry, so I make sure I go on the night she is at bingo to do that part. It seems to take a little of the stress out of our next visit, one less thing for her to complain about. Safety is the FIRST issue. I have a lot less to worry about all of the time. She will come around, but everyone is different. My mom has been in a NH for 6 months and she still tells me she hates it. It is the best for both of us, knowing she is cared for & me getting some of my life back.
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Have you spoken to the nurses and aides? How is your mom when you’re not around? You may find that she’s OK with the staff.
Oops, cross posted with Wally.
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Gerip1092 Sep 2018
I found that out with my mom, she is fine when I am not there.. Of course everyone has good & bad days, but getting her to try and make the best of it is tough....
have you spoke with the staff? does she act ok when you are not there? if she is doing ok with the staff, then find some comfort in that.

I briefly read a post back from February. and how you gave up so much for your mom already.  Your mom was lucky to have you do all for 15 years!

If your mom could think clearly she probably wouldn't act like that(unless its her personality long term) Tell yourself its the dementia and brain changes.

I agree there may be something the dr could prescribed to help her mellow out a bit. My mom doesn't say mean things, but she gets paranoid and obsessive about stuff. shes on low dose anti depressant.
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Sorry you are dealing with such challenging behaviors from your mom. You sound like a loving daughter. Family and I placed our mom, 92, in a beautiful memory care facility 2 years ago, and Mom hates it. Always has. Given her total self-absorption, penchant for drama, killjoy attitude, and propensity for guilt-bombing her family, turns out her refusal to move in with any was a blessing in disguise. She's all sweetness and light to memory care staff but subjects family to a verbal assault when we come to visit; "Get me out of here; I want to go to sleep and never wake up; you're the ones with dementia, not me; you can take me out of here anytime you want," etc. Complains endlessly about everything. The coffee's too weak. The coffee's too strong. Tells everyone who'll listen how awful her family is. Visits are tests of endurance; i. e. how long can you numb yourself to soul-sucking negativity?

Your friend gave you excellent advice. When your mom gets rolling with her accusations, physical violence, etc, tell her you'll have to leave now and come back later "when she feels better." I can't say this strategy modified my mom's behavior (you can't "teach" people with broken brains), but it halts the abuse (yes, it's abuse) at least for the moment and eases anxiety, just knowing there's an escape route. I never, ever place myself in a situation with Mom where I can't exit stage left. Or stage right. (joke)

All the reasoning and logic in the world doesn't work with dementia. Explanations are useless. Your mom's conduct isn't unusual, and your response one of a concerned daughter. You may need to emotionally distance yourself from your mom with fewer visits which will be short if you leave when the attacks start, as was suggested. Some of those with dementia benefit from medications, and a good doc can adjust them where the patient isn't overly sedated.

I'm so sorry you're going through this. It's gut-wrenching. No previous experience in life prepared me for this nightmare. You didn't cause this. You are a good daughter. Shed the guilt and live your life.
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Talking and "reasoning" with someone with dementia--you may as well stand on the front porch and yell into the wind. Their brains simply cannot handle information. Mom was "ok" at home b/c she knew the ins and outs, ect and had a routine. Suddenly that routine is totally upended.

Can you talk to her dr and get something to help settle her down for a while? She's going through such a change, and YOU understand why she needs more care, but she doesn't. I think some kind of tranquilizer would help a lot--at least for the short term. Not familiar with long term use of that in the very elderly. But it would be worth a try.

I imagine every time you go see her you are in knots, wondering how THIS visit is going to roll out.....and you know, you go home upset and she is back at the home, probably angry, but not knowing why.

Take more time for yourself, you don't need to be there everyday. The less she sees of you, the sooner she may adapt.

Sounds like your visits don't really benefit anyone. Talk to her doc and see what can be done. A change like that in a dementia patient is so confusing!

Good Luck.
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