I suppose I should start by apologizing, because I don't feel like I'm in my right mind at all. I realized today that my mom is forgetting that she's my mother. I'm so upset, all I see is black.

My mom phoned me twice. She usually says "Hi. It's me." She doesn't say that now. She says "Hi. It's Betty.'' If you knew my mom, you'd know this is something she would just never do. One of her biggest pet peeves is when kids address their parents by their first names.

Its not just that, though. My mom refuses to understand that she needs more help then I can provide her. And I've come to the conclusion that I don't have the courage to force anything on her.

So we're just floundering, we're miserable, she's worsening, and I'm getting so depressed that I just don't care if I live or die. The only thing keeping me going are my dogs.

No one to talk to. I'm sitting here in front of my husband and his cousin, happy that I have hair long enough to hide that I'm crying. (The sniffling, I blamed on allergies.) I can't tell anyone because when I try, I'm made to feel that I'm nothing but a dark cloud. I can't help it, though! (I know my marriage is going down the crapper, and I just don't care anymore. Not about that or anything else.)

How pathetic is it that I've only been care giving a year and I can't hack it. Most of you have been in this hell for so much longer then that. I don't know how you do it, and I wish I was as strong as you are.

I'm so sorry for this post. I'm gonna go try and get a grip now, l lol. Against what's left of my better judgment, I will hit "submit" now, and try my best not to crumble with embarrassment later.

Thanks for listening.

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First ... ((((HUGS)))) ... it isn't terrible...It's REAL.

I think you will find by reading the posts here that most of us do go through this to one degree or another...and you are not weak...nor do you have any reason at all to be embarrassed and if those around you make you feel this way...bad on them!!

I made it a year and a half...with mom living with is not easy, it's not fun, it's hard and if you don't have support from family it's like living in a horribly dark, dank cave with no relief from the cold.

Hiding your feelings isn't a good idea...let those around you know what's going on, get some help for yourself...depression isn't a good place to be and you really really really need to take care of this.

There are people that are able to somehow manage to care for a parent or loved one right to the end...but honestly each person is different and can handle different things.

Those same people may not be able to some of the things I can do, or you can do...we are different.

We can not judge ourselves by another's abilities or their lack of ability.

There is not right or wrong to what we are capable of or not.

Your mom needs help..sounds like she needs to be in a Nursing Home or have some form of dementia care, but you have to help make sure that happens.

It's for her safety and for your own.

But first....I'd suggest you get yourself into the Dr and get the depression sorted is very important that your in a good place so you can help your mom get into a good place.

Sigh...sorry but I just feel my heart breaking for you and really hope you are able to get the help you need in a physical manner...and know that there are lots of people here that have experienced these things and have made it through.

I went through a really deep depression at around the 1 year mark and it scared me a bit.

I came out of it and got motivated and was finally able to get mom into a place that is right for her.

So...take a deep breath and realize your response is somewhat normal and it's OK to be depressed about's OK to feel's OK to grieve for the person your mom was.


Also...I've found that once I started the conversation here, it helped and became easier to deal with things...loads of good advise, but more then that it is a place where we can all come and just BE.

Much Love to you and I truly hope it helps.
Helpful Answer (7)

Angels, vent away. I haven't gone through it, but I've had friends say that the hardest time is when our loved one no longer recognizes us. It's really sad that most of the time we are left with our feelings, because people wouldn't understand. Or worse yet, they would make us feel worse by acting like something was wrong with us.

Some of us have been caregiving a lot longer, but haven't gone through the trauma that you did. Your mother is in an advanced stage of Alzheimer's, so I hope you are able to find a place for her. She will not be happy, but she isn't happy now, either. After she settles in, she may be better. It would give you a chance to try to mend the other things going on in your life.

I wish we could fix things. All I can think of is to send you a big hug. I know others will be along shortly. People here tend to disappear on the weekends and reappear on Monday.
Helpful Answer (6)

awesome advice from people so far . dont be embarassed about reaching out . your letter is beautifully written .. what your trying to do with demented elder will bend steel . dont feel like your weak ..
Helpful Answer (6)

Angels~I am so sorry, I know how heart breaking it is to see our parent declining from this horrid disease.Big ((((hugs))) to you!!

There is a great book called, "Loving Someone Who Has Dementia.", by Pauline Boss. It is about the the caregiver goes through.

Now, I hope that you have DPOA on your mother so that you can legally make decisions for me If not, I would definitely work on getting your mother to have one made before she is diagnosed as mental incapacitated. Without one, it becomes very stressful and heartbreaking to get the help for your mother that she needs.

As suggested above, your mother does need to have placement according to what she can afford...however, do not over look seeing an Elder Law Attorney for advice. Depending on your mother's income and assets, she may qualify for a memory care facility or she may go to a nursing home.

I would try talking with her dr, if he or she will not talk with you openly because of HIPPA laws, then I would call the Area Agency on Aging in your county or city. A social worker can advise you.

Your marriage should come first (unless there are issues you haven't mentioned). I would work on getting that improved once you can get the situation with your mother taken care of. It sounds like your mother should not be living alone which is a big safety concern for her and you will want to see that she is safe.

Just some things for you to think about and to move forward on. Bless you as we know you are doing all you can. Hang in there and many positive thoughts your way.
Helpful Answer (5)

In her mind she may have forgotten you, but in her heart you will always stay. My mom often asked me if I was her mother, or child. That was not my mom talking hun that was the dementia. Her last words as she looked at me before her death was " love you".
Helpful Answer (4)

Please find someone that you can talk to. A relative, a doctor, a minister, a former teacher, anyone. It will help to just have them sit and listen.

Until your mother gets placed somewhere, it will be impossible to work on your marriage. I always thought that it might be easier to place them in a NH, if they didn't know you. I hope so.

My mother had to go. She could no longer live at home, after my sister that was caring for her died, suddenly. Mother can't hear me, so I don't call. I send packages and pictures. (I am in a different state.)

Please don't make any big changes until you are able to grieve and take time to see what is important. I bet your husband doesn't know how to help you. He might at least hold your hand, if you let him.

It sounds like you might need some counseling and an anti depressant. Don't try to white knuckle through this.
Helpful Answer (3)

Good thoughts and hugs to you and ditto on all the above advice. Don't give up on your marriage until mom is sorted out and in care.
Helpful Answer (2)

Angels 19 as soon as they get dementia you start to grieve its a long slow grieving and thats why its so hard its not easy for any of us i pray to god everyday that mum never forgets me but we never know whats going to happen so all i can do is prepare but you know none of us can really prepare for this.
I am just so sad that you cannot share this with your husband? maybe try and tell him how you feel isnt that what marriage is all about at least if you could talk to him about it and have his support then things may get a bit better?
noone can walk this road alone its too hard try and get to talk to your husband as he may not know how you are feeling if hes not there for you and supportive of you now then you may have to question your marriage?
I have a good friend who lost her mum from alz so shes been a huge help for me then of course this site! you are not a dark cloud you are losing your mum and people around you should try and understand that.
Keep posting here at least you will have support!
Helpful Answer (2)

RFhendricks thats so nice glad you experienced that its priceless! dad went quickly from a heart attack but the last thing we said was " i love you" thankgod i always ended my phone calls to him like that and its what you will treasure forever nothing else matters then!
Ive heard alot that alot of patients no matter how bad they were have a split second of reality just before the end? its strange but wonderful! my friends mum didnt know who anyone was for 3yrs and was lying in a bed from a stroke and couldnt move for those 3 years just before she died she sat up held her hand out smiled and called to her sister by name? yep strange so we just never know whats going on with them through this?
Helpful Answer (2)

It definitely hurts when you realize that the loved one you are caring for doesn't recognize you any more. Sometimes at night when I would help her to the restroom she would get this scared, frightened, trapped look in her eyes and I would know that she wouldn't know me. It really hurt when she would try to pull away from me (we had to hod on to her in case of more falls) and start calling for my sister. During the times she didn't know me I would use her name (my Mom was a Betty also) and she lost a lot of that fear. Using her name made me recognizable to her as her nurse. But even with as bad as it got there were times my sister and I laughed so hard we tears rolling down our cheeks. One incident was when my sister had gone to the store and Mom needed to go to the bathroom so to get my attention she started yelling "Hey, Lady?" "Lady?". It's not easy at first but you have to find the humor in the little things when you can. And don't feel guilty about any thing you think or feel. We all do what we have to. The day before Mom died she put her hand on my cheek and said "I love you, Darlin". She hadn't called me "Darling" for about 40 years. You are in my prayers, Angels19. Please come back any time you need to vent or when you just need to talk to people who really do understand what you are going through. And the best part is you can say any thing you want to say or need to say and you will not be judged. We've all been there (or will be). You also need to call social services in your area. They can be a fountain of information about services you and your Mom might be eligible for. Hang in there.
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