My Mum is newly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s but in all honesty has probably had this a while. I’m struggling as I can’t comprehend the difference between the way my Mum communicates with my siblings and myself. To my siblings she speaks in a way anyone would describe as “normal”. To me, she says things that feel as though a stake has been plunged through my heart. My siblings will never witness what I have heard and they believe I’m making things appear worse than they are. I now live with Mum. I can’t even describe myself as Mum’s “carer” as she resents me trying. I feel as though my hands are tied. I’m still trying to cope with the loss of my Husband and I feel so anxious most of the time and I don’t suppose my change in personality has helped the situation. I just don’t feel able to carry the weight of what’s happening on my shoulders alone. Yes, my Brother and Sister are concerned but I’m taking the full force alone and I’m buckling under the strain. I’ve heard it said that those living with the family member bears the brunt of things as far as lashing out is concerned, and that’s ok and understandable, but why has she turned against just me? Sorry for rambling a bit. Thanks to anyone that’s read this.
Hi. Tina. My wife had dementia at the end and it’s unbearable to watch such a decline. Your mum has not turned against you, it’s the dementia that’s talking.
I didn’t know how to cope until a neighbour who had a parent with dementia explained things to me. It will be difficult for you because there is no real explanation as to why one person is favoured above another.
You wont buckle under the strain. It’s always a wonder to me how people cope but they do. We all have courage, but often it remains dormant in us. It often appears in times of trouble.
I found that going along with my wife and just nodding or remaining silent when she said something strange was the best way, Try not to react to her as this will upset you both. I’m sorry, I have no real answer to your situation. You need to take it a day at a time. Things change and often when we least expect it.
Take care and come back and talk when you want. We are good listeners here because we know. This is the place to talk things out, to unload. We all need each other is times like this. Bless you.
Tina this is a dreadful illness. Your mum is not singling you out by speaking to you in this way but as you are the one dealing with it alone you spend more time with her than anyone else. I really think you need some practical and emotional help. Please contact the Alzheimer’s society ASAP and get their advice and help. Perhaps you can get some sort of respite care so that you can have a break which you need. I urge you to do this as you must be under a great strain. She has not turned against you it’s just that you are there in the firing line. This illness makes people say things they don’t mean to those they love. Your sibling don’t understand because they are not thee all the time. Please make that call . Just speaking to an expert can help. I don’t know what practical help will be available to you wheee you love but it is worth a try and will help you cope. You have a lot to cope with as you are also grieving. I hope you get some relief and comfort soon xx
Dear Jonathan and Bethany
I wish I could write a longer response of gratitude to you both, because I so much appreciate the kindness you’ve shown. I found the comments so helpful. My mind is shattered to bits though and I can’t find all the right words right now.
Thanks so much once again, I wish you both serenity and peace.