Has anyone experienced that their loved one's dementia personality is somehow triggering feelings from when you were a child? Feelings that you thought weren’t there and that you’d managed to grow out of.
I'm finding that my mum's new dementia personality is highlighting and putting together 1 + 1 for things that have occurred in the past.
It's a really uncomfortable feeling and one that makes me look at Mum in a different way. A way that I don’t wish to see her. I want to just be a responsible adult and be of support. But I’m finding that each day I’m also battling my own emotional roller coaster of feelings dating back to early childhood. I’m 39 years old and suddenly I’m having a craving to have a supportive mother. What is this all about. It’s like her behavior is validating my earlier feelings / doubts which I never knew existed. For instance Mum has always ran away from her problems and that is highlighted now in her current state. It automatically triggers painful events from the past like when Mum decided just like that to move overseas (leave my dad behind) where we then lived poor (I was looking for coins on the ground at one stage). Somehow her behavior now has highlighted to me how she never quite was responsible and always stubborn. I know no one is perfect and life throws curveballs at us,.. and we can all look back at instances and say “we could have dealt with that better” but I can’t help these feelings at the moment. How do I block it out and just concentrate on today and not go through this rollercoaster of my own feelings from the past ??
Also how do I convince my mum that she is not a billionaire that owns everything in this world? She gets upset watching even a football match thinking they are on her ground. She gets upset reading a magazine for same reasons. She gets upset if the grocery store doesn’t give discount see as she owns it. She has a major complexity with being rich for some reason. Then she gets angry at me and as you can imagine - my childhood was in no way rich and her making these statements is like she is invalidating our past. I know I know it’s the disease but I need a way to react because so far all my reactions are just causing arguments. She wants me to literally invent this vivid world that she has imagined and I obviously can’t. I can’t pull a Ferrari out of my pocket and call over our personal chef! I’ve tried different strategies like,.. turning the tv off when this happens but she won’t let go of the topic. I’ve tried going along with it partially and say,.. yes let’s sort it out once you find the papers”. But none of my reactions are helping. It’s like she believes that I am holding her prisoner in this “normal” life and that she has everything. I’ve even offered to “drive” her to one of these supposed properties that she owns”. This is causing daily friction and I really need a way to deal with this. Otherwise conversations are fine. It’s just this “rich” part that really is a struggle.