My only two close family members have memory loss and I'm only 25. What can I do? - AgingCare.com

My only two close family members have memory loss and I'm only 25. What can I do?

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My sister, 22, and my mom, 58, both have trouble remembering many things. Some of them are extremely important (like social security cards, debit cards, bills, etc) some less important (opening a window when the a.c. is on), and some emotionally important (mom giving our old cat to a kill shelter while I was at school bc she peed on the bed). My sister mostly keeps her memory problems from affecting me but mom's affect all of us. She forgets tons of little things but also things from our lives. Also, she moves my things around all the time, then doesn't remember moving them or where she put them. If I ask her if she's seen something (not even accusingly...just if she's seen it) she gets super defensive and angry.


Today she said we were going to lake Erie but when I asked when we were going to erie she frustratingly corrected me saying we were going to a different lake. But then, in the car, she corrected me again, saying we were going to Erie and didn't remember telling me we weren't.


I'm temporarily living with her because of money and I appreciate what she's doing for me, but living like this makes me so anxious. We all suffer from anxiety and depression and living with her can be so difficult when she swings from one emotion to another suddenly or forgets things.


I don't have much other family support because our dad left us when we were kids, taking his side of the family with him. Moms side only has her two brothers. One is estranged and the other takes care of a lot of poor and/or elderly people in his town.


Not sure what to do...

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My deepest sympathies Anxious lady. My husband has adult ADHD which is very stress full and destructive. If Mom and Sis can be properly diagnosed there are very effective treatments these days.
I would suggest you talk to a therapist about this he/she will totally understand what is going on and will have suggestions for help, and help you move on from this situation. it is not your responsibility so don't get suckered in and end up spending your life dealing with this.
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Countrymouse, that's the same thing I thought of as well.
Thanks for coming back and giving us more info Anxious Lady. By the way, folks used to think that children outgrew this but it's not so. Many adults recognize they have it when their children are diagnosed.

Here is another site for you to check out. http://totallyadd.com/
Also by a comedian, Rick Green. A Canadian I believe. I watched one of his videos on PBS once and it was so informative. He has a news letter.

See if you and your sister relate. By the way this is very common and very treatable and runs in families. After you understand it, you will notice many who are burdened to one degree or another with the same thing. And yes, most who have ADD or ADHD are very smart. They have to manage in a world that isn't set up for them. But they are brilliant at many things.
They sometimes seek to self medicate and run into lots of problems. Check out the website and you'll soon know if its a fit.
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AnxiousLady, has anyone every mentioned ADHD in the context of your mother and sister? There's a comedian and impressionist called Rory Bremner, very bright bloke indeed, who recently described the terrible difficulties he had as an adolescent but then also through much of his young adult life which he could never understand or cope with until he was diagnosed. It might explain a lot about the way they behave; and - don't know whether this is reassuring or not - it means that it's not so much memory that's the problem as an inability to focus and pay attention - your mind is always skipping off in new directions, and it's extremely difficult to follow through on a train of thought.

Anyway, just thought I'd mention it.

And what should you do? You're 25! Crack on with your own life and don't get tangled in situations you can't and shouldn't be responsible for. Any plans for what you would like to do?
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sorry in advance for my lazy typing.

my mom and sister are both very active and both work. my sister has a good diet and my mom's diet is fair. My sister has had memory problems since she was little. it caused a lot of self loathing because of the many many MANY teachers who treated her like an idiot. "we just don't know what to do with mary" was a common sentence we heard from teachers. "putting things in the same place" just doesn't work. they both berate themselves when they forget things.

we went on a road trip and twice i had to hold my sister as she sobbed after ripping through the truck for an hour looking for her wallet with all her money for the trip inside (as well as important things like a license and ss card). luckily we found it both times. she tells me she literally thought she was mentally disabled as a kid until she moved schools and the new teachers told her how smart she is. they really are smart, too. they're just extremely forgetful.
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AnxiousLady, is it really memory loss or just being absent minded?

As for your Mom, have her checked for a Urinary Tract Infection as that can mimic dementia. The test is simple and if it is an UTI, easily fixed. If you find Mom still has memory issues, then take her to her primary doctor and he/she will go from there.

As for your sister, 22 is way too young to have any proven memory issues. Does your sister work? Work is a great exercise for one's brain. Otherwise boredom will set in. Sister could just be scattered brain and there is nothing wrong with that.

Re-read 97yroldmom's post above, lot of excellent ideas :)
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Anxious Lady
Is your mom able to work? Do you and sister work and have insurance?
Try to find a therapist to discuss this with. Even if you don't have insurance you may be able to find help with a therapist who charge on a sliding scale. Stress can make people have poor memories. ADD or ADHD can also.
Exercise really helps depression. Sometimes exercise helps more than antidepressants. Walking for 30 minutes at a quick pace will help. Make sure you get proper rest but try not to sleep too much. Watch your diet. Cut out sugar, excess carbs. Try to eat a plant based diet as much as possible. Drink plenty of water. These simple routine steps can greatly improve your overall health and improve your mood. Try to get mom in to see her primary dr for a physical. I'm sorry you are all having such a tough time.
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