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My mom has dementia and she will call me off and on while she's in a state of confusion. Mostly stating she's in a different place. I'm at a crossroads, because if I take the call and try to explain she's mad. If I don't take the call, she continues to call and leave lengthy messages. I feel like I'm damned if I do and damend if I don't. I mostly just let her leave a message, and I don't call back unless I fell there's a problem. Then I'll call the ALF and let them know. I feel guilty when I don't, but it seems so pointless.

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Gayle189. She sounds so much like my mom. My mom's big thing is that she doesn't know where she is, and she believes they keep moving her to different places. This goes on and on day after day, and really wears me down. She really has no perception of reality. Thanks for your response and I wish you and your family the best.
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I have same situation except it it with my aunt..my moms sister...I try to get mom over to see her as much as is tolerated....she is mean to my mom so mom stears clear.....she calls mom and I several times a day...usually can't remember calling...try to call her back but she doesn't hear the phone....she is now beginning to sleep mist of the time....some calls are heartwrenching....imagines people breaking in...or trying to kill her bird....then in morning doesn't remember calling.....so mom and I turn calls to v mail...I call the AL if I think she needs attention and they check on her.
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No, I don't call her at regular times, but I have thought that's something I should try doing. It's just hard, because I never know what state of mind she'll be in. I go see her for a couple of hours 4 or 5 times a week, and there are times when I just want a break, and she ends up calling me all day long.

Notwellmyself....I can relate to the messages your co-worker was receiving. I've had some very ugly ones myself. Of course I know it's not really her, but it still upsets me.

She does watch TV most of the day. They have activities at the ALF, but she's not interested in joining in. She seems to get something on her mind, blows it all out of perportion, and obsesses over it all day long.

I'm glad to hear maybe I'm doing all I can do. I used to take the calls, but they never ended well, so I decided in order to keep my sanity (what's left) maybe I shouldn't talk to her during those times.

Thanks for your responses.
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I feel really sorry for you on this. When I still worked, one of our secretaries' mother would call and leave the most awful voice mails. We felt so sorry for her, but knew there was probably nothing wrong. Is there anything that can be done to keep her mind occupied so she does not think about calling you? Would she watch old movies, paint, play cards, put puzzles together, etc? If she can't maintain her train of thought long enough for a movie, what about America's Funniest Home Videos? Those clips are not very long and she might find them comical. Also, if she has a TV with a USB port, scan some old pictures onto a thumb drive and plug it into the TV. The pictures will then run across her TV and might entertain her for a while.
Good Luck.
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I would do what you are doing -- screen the messages and not respond to the meaningless calls.

Do you call her at regular times? If you call her everyday at 10 am and 4 pm and keep the call short and upbeat that MIGHT reduce the number of calls and perhaps reduce your guilt feelings.

Good luck!
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