Can people with dementia have what they call "show-timer's?"

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She appears very normal and sane to others, but when she is home she has different actions. She has fooled many people including doctors.

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Definitely. For company or for doctor visits, etc. early-to-moderate dementia patients can gather up all their composure and put on their best behavior and appear perfectly normal. It takes a great effort and they may be exhausted afterward, but for a limited time they can put on the "normal" show. This gets harder as the dementia progresses and eventually they can't do it. But for a while this can be very frustrating for the caregivers, who can't get anyone to take their concerns seriously!
This brings a funny story to my mind.... I must share it!!! When I took Mom to the Doctor, who she liked very much, and even had a delusional wedding with Dr.B as her Groom (at a later time than this story) He was telling her at my request to eat veggies, and as he was going through the list and as he was saying each veggie she made a face like YUK!!! Was so cute and funny. I thought she would listen to him and I could say well Dr. B said you should eat veggies. Not that simple.... So one day we were in the store, and we were in the produce section, I saw the Dr. right behind her and I winked at him. Mom had no idea he was there. So I picked up broccoli and said, Do you want broccoli she says "Dr. B said I can't eat that." Then I picked up green beans..... "Dr. B said I can't eat that." He was smiling ... I said are you sure that's what he said , she said " Oh yes the veggies make me itch so I can't eat them." I said are you sure that's what he said , because he's right behind you. She says no he's not your lying...I said "turn around" he says Hello She said "OH Hello" She blushed and was speechless batted her eyes then said lets go. I love sharing these things because it makes all the badness turn into a goodness. I forget all the hard times I had and laff about the silly. BTW she still makes me laff.
LUCKYDOG55. I completely know what you're going through. This site is comforting, because every day someone mentions a problem I'm dealing with related to my 88 year old mother who lives in denial about her dementia and I don't feel so alone and isolated.
My mom's split personality is a huge part of my stress and angst related to being her caregiver. She's so wacky, mean and abusive most of the time with me. She's basically miserable most of the time with me. With me, she has almost no short term memory. Then, whenever she goes out with me, she's like an entirely different woman, nice and sweet and jovial. I don't even recognize her. She's such a phony. But, my life is really hell because my brother and sister do nothing for my mother and see her maybe once a month for an hour. They tell me that she's fine and I must be losing it to say my mother's sick and has dementia. Also, when my mom goes to her doctor, she goes in alone and won't allow me to tell her doctor the truth about her condition, so she's getting no help for her severe mental problems.
Anyway, it's gratifying to know others are experiencing many of the difficulties I am.
thanks for sharing your story, it really helps to know this happens to other caregivers too, I keep getting looks from all the people she has fooled like Im so mean and lying about my mom! your story was funny I hope I can reach that point but right now its very frustrating, she tells everyone I have dementia not her!
LUCKYDOG55 If you like that one lol I got more... this one might make you feel better about her accusations. Mom was already in NH but needed to go to Dermatologist the NH calls me to ask me to bring her. I said the whole reason she is there is she cannot be alone with me I am the bad guy to her. I want to go but an aid needs to go with us. So we are at the Dr. in waiting room with the aid. You could hear a pin drop. Mom was pleasant until I was chatting with the aid. Then like someone flipped a switch....Loud as can be Mom says.... "She's a thief, she stole my clothes, my money, she's crazy, etc." I buried my head in a magazine as if I didn't know her." It is obvious that I am her daughter we look a lot alike. So we then go into the Dr. and he's asking her questions she's telling him I get a rash when it rains out. I rolled my eyes he had no clue she has dementia. I pulled him aside to explain and he was repeating what she had told him, I said you can't believe what she say's she also thinks she's 17!! He said OOHHHH!!!
I am so glad to read all of this. My mother drives me crazy when she acts normal to others and not to me. If I tell her something, it is wrong. If someone else tells her the same thing she does it and acts like they know everything. She also lies to everyone about everything in order have a good story and no one knows what is real. They think she is so adorable and sharp. They think she is sane and I am an idiot. When we get home, she has no clue what was happening or even who the people were or where we went. My mother is 92 and I take care of her 24/7.
So comforting to hear others go thru this same thing. My mother had her doc so fooled the doc decreased mom's psych meds and she's back to being a witch with me again.i called doc and asked for a conference next week.wish me luck.
I have to say how helpful it is for me to read all of the stories here. When I am alone with my mom in this, I sometime feel like she is the one who is really on top of things, smart and manipulative and I am the dim one. When I take a moment to read your stories I can see I share so many of the examples you have written here. Being in the waiting room, in the car with her after a doc appointment with a handsome man, etc, etc. My stories are so painful I hate to recall them, but if your stories were painful to recall... I just want to say a heartfelt thank you to you for sharing, because you made me feel less alone... and much more intelligent than I did before I read them! Thank you for being here with me... we all must be reassured that we are OK because the stories are so similar and we should be proud of being kind and helpful!!...
Since my aunt Ami (95) is 100% compliant in front of her doctor, I asked him to write her a "prescription" for a weekly bath. She gushed over it, thanked him profusely for the 'reminder,' and then, when we were in the car, ripped it to shreds. "Who is that idiot to tell me to take a bath? I take a bath every morning." Some days later, when I got her into the bathroom for a sponge bath, she was horrified. Oh, no, we'd have to wait till the weather was better, till she was well, on and on. I said the doctor called, he wants you to get cleaned up. Without missing a beat, Ami said, "I know. He called again. He said 'not yet.'" I fell down laughing. I know what you mean about how they fool others. At a dinner, Ami had an entire table of people convinced that she had cooked the meal. When she saw me smiling at her description of how hard the desserts had been, she grinned and shrugged as if to say, "Well, if they want to believe it. . ."
Oh I love this.... S can only shuffle when he walks, but let a pretty RN or Aide come in and he is struttin' instead of shufflin'..... gonna remember this... thanks for sharing...

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