He later became an alcholic and smoker as well. He does have an addictive personality. He’s deceptive, will lie about little things that don’t matter. He hoards his sweets so that I don’t think he has any (even though it’s fine with me if that’s what he wants to eat.) I just wonder if some of the things from childhood will show up in the Alzheimer’s behavior, and if he may forget he stopped drinking and smoking.

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Since being diagnosed with dementia my father talks endlessly about his emotionally and sexually abusive childhood. He actually believes this trauma has caused his dementia and tells us every time we visit as a ploy for us to feel sorry for him and take him home, My dad's long term memory is very clear at the moment, he can't remember names and places but the stories are very detailed. My dad was never open about this abuse, he was very closed up and it is surprising to us it is all coming out now.
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My father has vascular dementia, not ALZ so the experiences may be very different. My dad was neglected (father was an alcoholic and drug addict who would not support the family) and physically and verbally abused as a child. Dad developed paranoid personality disorder as a result of his childhood abuse. As a man, he choose to live a very different lifestyle than the home he was raised in, married a Christian woman and supported his children. He stressed good manners and polite speech. I remember him telling me you only needed cuss words and vulgar language if you weren't smart enough to express yourself without them. I was 14 when I heard the first mild cuss word in my parent's home - and that was from my mother. When dementia hit, Dad's language became very foul; today most sentences include at least one cuss or vulgar word/phrase. Dad's first cousin says Dad's father spoke that way so it appears Dad's language reverted to what he heard in his childhood. Whether dementia damaged the language portion of the brain or the governance section of the brain that he used to contain this language by choice I cannot say.
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There’s no hard and fast answer to this because Alzheimer’s manifests itself in different ways in different people. It’s a total crapshoot. Very unpredictable.

However, having said that, my experience with my mother seems to indicate that past traumas can affect dementia patients. She was always a prude. I had to learn about sex from a baby book in our attic. She probably left it there for me to find so she didn’t have to have “the talk” with me.

After dementia took hold of her, sex was 95% of her conversations when I visited. The facility was a “brothel” and all the staff and elderly patients were having sex. Men and boys were stalking her and one boy in particular was stealing her dirty underwear. She told me once that when she was a young secretary, she went on “rides” with her much older boss. I have no way of knowing what happened, if anything, between them.

People with dementia seem to live in the past. They often don’t recognize us because they remember us from our childhood and how we looked then—or in your husband’s case maybe when you were a young bride.

You can nix the drinking and smoking by simply not providing access to those. Warn people who visit not to give him alcohol or smokes. My husband bums cigarettes off our son-in-law and it annoys me no end. If your husband demands them, redirect.
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