Pull the phone out or not? - AgingCare.com

Pull the phone out or not?

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Mom has been filling the voice mail box w long demanding angry delusional messages. She lost her hearing aids and can't hear hardly at all so can't hear me on the phone when I do pick up. I have taken up to unplugging my phone but I need it to work for emergencies related to my broken foot. I finally had staff remove the phone in her room. Staff will help her make a call if she wants from the front desk. What have others done w abusive demented parents telephones at this stage?

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My mother often asks for a phone in her room as well. So far I have deflected her requests. She has no concept of night or day and has called me in the middle of the night. But through repeated assurances from me and the nursing home staff she understands they will call me if she needs me. And, they have. Its a matter of repetition.
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My mom sometimes calls me 6-8 times in an hour in the evening. I cannot take her phone away, as she lives alone with caregivers coming in and out. I just have to ignore the calls and listen to voicemail to make sure nothing is wrong. She has an address book for her more frequently called numbers....I had to switch out the number of a neighbor she was calling way too much and was to the point of harassing...I put our home phone number which has no answering machine and which we never answer instead of the neighbor's number so if she calls, our phone rings instead of his and she doesnt get a voicemail recording. Doing things like this are a matter of survival when dealing with an elderly dementia patient who often has the behavior of a spoiled preschooler. Sad, but true.
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I had the same problem with my mother. I had to issue an order that mother not be allowed to call me. In an emergency, staff could call. Anything health related had to go through Hospice. They just do not realize how much their behavior affects the caretakers.
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When the dementia patient can no longer handle the phone properly, to me, it's the right thing to do. I see no point in allowing them to call with no filter and no way to really understand what is being said. It's just extra stress for no reason. If she needs me, the staff will certainly call. To me it makes sense. Some people suggest that you give them a number that you don't answer at certain times or that you ignore the cals, etc., I don't see the point in all that. If they can't benefit from the calls, then what is the point?
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