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My mom called both me and my sister to tell us that her and her roommate made it back to the care facility and were fine so we wouldn't worry. She said they had been out all day doing things and they were exhausted. This is not the first time since the lockdown that she has told us these types of things. I just don’t know where this comes from. Is this a normal thing for Alzheimer's patients? I don’t know what her roommate is thinking when she tells us this stuff. I do feel like the change to her routine is really taking a toll on her mind and I don’t know what we can do to help it. We got her a facebook portal so we can video chat with her but we are so afraid that before the lockdown is over, she will be really bad.

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Yep, it's normal for Alzheimer's and dementia sufferers to confabulate.......to make up stories to suit their moods. You are wise to just go along with whatever she tells you, since arguing just creates MORE arguing! If she thinks that she & her roommate were out all day & having a ball, more power to her! The goal is really to keep her happy and content. Anxiety tends to prevail with this miserable disease, so anything we can do to PREVENT their anxiety is what we should strive to do. Whether that means making up 'white lies' or agreeing with nonsensical stories or saying whatever is required to keep them relaxed, then that's what we do. As long as we're not creating harm for them, you know? If you have a question about what is REALLY going on, call the facility where she lives and fact check. When my mother (who lives in Memory Care) starts telling me all about how they're 'starving her' or throwing peanut butter & jelly sandwiches in her face (with no other choices), THAT is when I get on the horn and fact check. Just to satisfy myself that all is well and she's just confabulating. Again.

Good luck!
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Davenport May 22, 2020
God bless, lealonnie!
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I have a friend whose mother does the same thing. She now has mom write "a letter" to someone and tell them all about her day. She then shares the letters that have somewhat unique content with close friends via FB. It is very interesting to look into the mind of someone who is disconnected with their current reality. Her letters are so well-written that you could really believe she spent the day at the beach with her husband (who has been dead thirty years) when it was actually snowing that day in Ohio. My friend keeps all the letters with a note about what the day was really like. Perhaps your mom would be willing to write letters as well, something you would have as a reminder of her after she is gone.
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jacobsonbob May 22, 2020
What an interesting and excellent idea! Your friend's mother has something to do to keep her busy, your friend can learn what's going on in her mother's mind and, as you suggested, this will make interesting reading later on (in addition to the present!)
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Yes... this IS normal. I have worked with dementia patients for 25+ years. They make up things ALL the time and when they tell you things that you know are NOT true, please...... please.....please... do not correct them, do not disagree with them. They honestly believe that what they are telling others is reality. And it IS reality to them. You cannot change their minds.. you won't be able to reason with them. When you do correct them.. disagree with them.. all it causes it anger from them. Best thing is distract them when they get angry. As soon as they start making up stuff in particular that upsets them, distract them with something that will make them "happy". And it can even be the same thing over and over because they most likely are NOT going to remember you having brought it up before. Sad... but true. GOD bless. you.
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cedarbrook May 24, 2020
Yes, you hit it squarely on the head by saying DON'T correct them. I've been caring for my husband for 2 and a half years. I have read EVERYTHING I could find about dementia. A neurologist said to me after a telephone consultation, "I think you know more about dementia than I do because you're living with it, and you've done a great job of responding to it.." That's one of the rules I've learned, DON'T REACT----RESPOND. Be safe.
CEDARBROOK
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MyAngel80, there are many great resources online where you can learn all about your mom's condition and what to expect and how to handle things. Your mom's "adventure" sounds awesome compared to some of the things the cognitively impaired think is going on (my aunt is always confronting burglars and people with knives and is very distressing to her). It does't matter what her roommate thinks...she may be having her own delusions. Teepa Snow has videos online that many on this forum have recommended to learn about dementia/ALZ. You and your sister are doing the best you can considering the circumstances. Learning more will help ease some of that stress. May you and your family have peace in your hearts!
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Your mother may talk about things she imagines or wishes were true. They are real to her. Answer within her reality. "I'm glad you got back safely." "It must have been nice to go shopping." " thank you for telling me about your day. " and so on.
No need to contradict her. No harm done.
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Thank you! We do get weekly updates from the facility, which helps.
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disgustedtoo May 23, 2020
She sounds like she had a good time! Why burst that bubble?

I've been pretty much stuck here, unable to finish the rehab of this place nor go anywhere for lack of funds, going on 2 years now, never mind 2 months! Just when the finances were resolving and I found someone who could get the labor needed to finish the work needed, along comes this damn virus!

Maybe I should start making up stories about how my day(s) go...

So, as others have said, it is common and you should just play along with it. This is her reality and it seems to be keeping her happy! Could be worse.

If you or sis are bothered by it, let her finish her "story" and then gently try to change the subject to something else.
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Every person is different and the disease effects some quicker than others. As long as it isn't harmful or thoughts of running away, don't agree or disagree just get connected to the present with light conversation. Sometimes the activity department comes up with some pretty unique ideas to break the monotony with play acting different themed partys. While doing their best to make the residents life a little fuller, some confused patients can believe it to be the rea deal.l As long as she's not slipping off or constantly worried about where she is I don't think it's hurting anything. Don't worry about the future, she'll always be your mom no matter what. Read what you can on her specificate problems/issues from medical researchers to help you know what to expect. Talk with people like these on this site and take some time to read for your own emotional support. Knowledge is the only power you have over this disease so use all you can.
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It's absolutely normal. For several months last year, my mother demanded to go home several times a day, and she was at the home she owned and had lived in for more than 50 years. We figured out that she wanted to go to her childhood home, and we discovered that promising her we'd leave later usually calmed her down. My point is that an Alzheimer's-impaired brain is going to tell stories that are off by 60 years, pure fantasy, complete fiction, or nightmares. It is all true to your loved one. Don't argue, don't try to prove them wrong. Logic is the first thing to go. So, yes, go along with it. Unless they're telling you they're experiencing something awful, which even if it isn't happening, is affecting them mentally and might require anti-anxiety meds or anti-depressants.
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Wendylou May 22, 2020
Hi!
I'm going through the same thing with my 80 yr old mother with vascular dementia.
The only problem is I'm running out of excuses why we can't leave today.
In addition to that most of the times she gets really angry when I come up with an excuse.

I tried to distract her most of the time.
It's not easy. Especially when you're dealing with a woman with a very STRONG character.
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I try to think of it as her brain is trying to find connections that were once linear, but now aren’t. She was worried about something but can’t tell if it is her inner thought swirl or what really happened. Some things I have learned to translate. If we are out and about and she asks me several times if someone picked my sister up from school it means that she is overwhelmed and ready to return to the facility where she feels safe. Things just don’t process the same way. The restaurant we’ve had lunch at for years, while familiar is full of motion and sound that she can’t process in way that lets her file it away as background noise. She’s not lying, she is picking something out of the grab bag to provide an answer. In your case the best thing to do is to agree with your mother that it is a good or bad thing based on the answer provided to reassure, because she may not be talking specifically about her roommate but another person and her roommate walked by when she was talking to you or she saw something that reminded her of her room mate. She is trying to tell you that she was worried about something but it is ok now. Or at least that is how choose to interpret.
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Yep--annoying as all get out, but normal.

If you saw my mom before 3 pm, you'd think she was pretty on point. After that, the slow slide into another world.

Nothing to do for it--she's on so many meds the docs won't give her anything. She's calm, so it's not like she's causing problems, She's just like a totally different person.
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