My mother is turning into a mean person. She choked her nursing home roommate and is threatening others. How do I deal with this? - AgingCare.com

My mother is turning into a mean person. She choked her nursing home roommate and is threatening others. How do I deal with this?

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My dear sweet Mother has turned into a difficult mean person !
They are moving her to a private room, she choked her room mate and is threatening others.
This just breaks my heart, she's 5ft2in and weighs 110 and has never been anything but sweet.
I don't know how to deal with this, I feel like getting in my car and just keep driving to no where.I'm too old for this, I'm scared-lonely and just lost.

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Sandya--sorry about your m.i.l., my Mom was put on a new med. and is doing much better, she did see a psychiatrist and hasn't threatened or been nasty.
Does she have dememtia--
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We are having exactly the same problem with my 92 yr old mother in law. She was recently admitted to hospital with perceived heart pains and now the nursing facility she was at is refusing to allow her back. At present we have not found a facility to take her. Any suggestions on how to proceed?

Sue
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When you are there, it "orients" her to the here and now. This is not her fault, nor yours, please realize. Ask if she can have a consult with a psychiatrist. If a good physician sees her, they may be able to find some medication to help her (and therefore you) to feel more like her old self. The private room is certainly sensible, but she is still having thoughts that show she is not quite "right", from what you are saying. Bringing her a few happy pictures to look at of her past may help her, but she may be too upset to concentrate. I really think a doctor needs to intervene. Is there a nurse there you can talk with? Ask if they have a psychiatrist they could recommend. It is worth it to make her feel better (and then you will feel better). Good luck to you and your Mom.
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Lauren, I have never seen my Mom do anything violent, she was moved to a private room because of it.
I believe she is threatening, just from some of her remarks
She is content while I'm with her, but never happy anymore and as far as I can tell, she will never be happy again and I reallly see no reason that she could or would be.
Going to see her leaves me drained, I just really want to run away but I'm too old for that.
I just thank God that she isn't nasty with me.
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Hi Nance, I am sorry you and your Mom are going through such a rough time right now. Although it seems terrible to you, as a nurse who has worked with elderly people for 20 years, let me tell you this is more common than you think. I cared for a prominent Pastor once who had a very large family and wife who were very deeply religious. He developed dementia, and in his sickness, he began to curse. He would loudly say very awful curse words, and his poor family were just flabbergasted. The things he would say were things he never in a million years would utter! When a person ages, different parts of our body often malfunction-think of the person who has a heart "condition" or kidney failure. We find those things sad, but easier to accept, but dementia is just the brain failing due to age. It is not a reflection of your Mom, just her failing health. She could have a Psychiatric Evaluation, which is when a psychologist or psychiatrist examines her in-depth. They would be able to decide what caused her to have the behavior she exhibited. They look at physical causes as well as just the emotional or mental causes. Usually they can recommend medication to help her calm down. I always felt like the person who is having the behavior is more comfortable if they can calm down and act more like their own self, and if there is a medication that can help, that's good. Try not to take her having health peoblems too hard. They are more of a reflection on her failing health than anything.
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my thoughts are with you as you deal with this insanity. Please keep in mind that for all practical purposes that what it is: Insanity.

Everything Lilliput said is straight up. Especially the Scarlett O'Hara part!

It's a sad part of this terrible disease that this happens. I know my Mom mellowed out considerably when we started her on Namenda.

Good luck and know that you're being thought of by those of us who fight this fight and somehow continue on. Reaching out for help here is genius because all of these folks are neck deep in it too and we won't let you go too nuts!!

be safe,
Bobbie
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My Dad is on medications to help with his aggressiveness and agitation. While meds shouldn't be the first consideration, they can often help when the brain doesn't work normally anymore. My Dad is much nicer to be around now that they have his medications in place. Before, there were catastrophic reactions. No doubt the nursing home is working with your mom on that, for depression, anxiety, etc. This can help. It may also help you to talk with a Social Worker at your mom's facility. That person can help you with your emotions, and approaches with your mom. Best wishes.
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Nance I am also going through something similar. I have found my mom to be a little meaner since her stroke. Seems like the more I do, the worse she talks to me. I just kind of figured it's because she is no longer independent and cannot do anything and resents it.

I keep going though because every now and then she tells me how much she appreciates me being there and that makes it all worth it.
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Nance,
My heart and prayers go out to you. I know how frustrating it can get when there doesn't seem to be a good answer anywhere you look. I keep talking about "running away from home" too...we may pass each other on the road!

I had a moment like this right before the holidays. So I emailed a good friend who had just taken care of his grandmother until her passing. Instead of emailing me back he called and we talked and laughed for hours. After our conversation, I literally felt like a new person. We shared all the craziness that seems to come from otherwise good-natured seniors and how demanding they can be.

Is there someone you can talk to? (a good friend, counselor, clergy member, neighbor, or support group member) It is amazing how uplifting it can be if you can just articulate your feelings to someone with a patient ear. (and conversely, because you are fragile right now, avoid any negative family members, etc.)

I also turn to something creative. It takes my mind away from things even if it is for a moment or two.

It sounds like your mother's facility has done the appropriate thing by moving her. At least she is no longer a threat to others. When you are not assisting her, just try to think of anything but caregiving. I know it is hard, but there are just some days when I have to do a "Scarlet O'Hara" and "think about it tomorrow."

Take care,
Lilli
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