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Dealing with Husband's Dementia/Alz.

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Finally we have discovered what was happening to my husband. We have been married now 49 years and for the last 4-5 years I could not figure out what was going on with him. He acted childish at time, his temper/anger toward me was getting worse each day and then he began forgetting and loosing things.
One day he had a dental appointment so he went alone but was gone for about 2 hours which was an unusually long time since we live very close to the dental office and he was only having routine cleaning done

When he arrived home he told me he had blacked out as he was leaving the office, he said he did not know where he was or what to do so he sat down in the parking lot under a tree for some time until he saw our vehicle. It was a small parking lot so he should have been able to see it immediately. I made an appointment with our family physician and after a few tests was told he has dementia, type unknown and we then went to a neurologist.

All of this, including many changes in his personality, has caused me to be stressed most days. We now stay home much more than we used to because he doesn't like being in crowds or where movement and noise is. He does want to go somewhere, a drive, whatever each day, this gets old for me but I am trying to do whatever will keep him calm. One day he got so angry with me I had to call 911 to calm him down. New medication helped with his anger, he is now calm most of the time.

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    I am so sorry to read this... My mother is in a very advanced stage of Alzheimer and I remember the stage you are talking about. It takes a while to understand what is happening! Please, try and find help. This is not going to get any easier, and you'll exhaust yourself. There are organisations that offer support groups where you can come with your husband. They take care of him and you can talk with other people who face the same situation. Even though you live in a small town, there must be a group like this nearby. Here is a website I have found very helpful, I hope it will help you too:
    More than anything, remember to take good care of yourself. emoticon
    1601 days ago
    I honestly think your kids are missing out. They will miss the time with Dad while he is still able to converse and remember who they are. They are missing out on a chance to show and feel the love of someone who suffers. They are missing time with you and being able to give back to their mom for all she has done for them in their lives. Support groups are great, but if you can't leave him alone how are you suppose to get there? I'm so sorry you are going through this by yourself. Maybe if they could come for a visit they would be more understanding.

    1602 days ago
    such a sad situation the children will not see all the best
    1627 days ago
    Thank all of you for your concern and wishes, I am fine just stressed at this time. He is on medication which has controlled his anger quiet a bit. Learning from reading online how to handle each situation has helped me since I have never known anyone with this illness. I have learned it is best to always agree with him, never argue and walk away when he is angry.

    As for having help so I can have time for myself, I do not have that in any way. We live in a small town in the south, no large medical centers here or within 100 miles. Our children do not believe I need help or that their father has a problem. I have tried telling them things he does or does not do anymore but that hasn't convenience them either. He no longer drives, it's been a year now since he drove so I have to do that now. I suppose I get depressed at times because we spend most of our time sitting at home with no one to talk with, just watch TV .
    1628 days ago
    My mother is going through this now. We found out she has cerebral amyloid angiopathy (a cousin of Alzheimer's) as well as Korsakoff's Syndrome, both resulting in increasing dementia. We had to take her car keys, very important. You can't be piloting a vehicle while trying to figure out where you are. We had to move her to a continuing care facility. It's tough, I know. The only person who doesn't understand is the one who has it. Do you have kids that can help you? Just the moral support is priceless.
    1628 days ago
    Bless your heart. I've been in nursing for about 35 years and this is one of the hardest things for anyone to deal with. Get help now. Investigate all the resources you can and understand that the temporary bursts of anger will become more and more common and uncontrollable. Be careful and regardless of your children's reaction, protect yourself. This can be more serious than just forgetting ....hugs
    1628 days ago
    There is a lot of very good education now on dementia and experts agree that caregivers also need caretaking. I had a job living with a lady with Alzheimer's once and I had two hours off every day, seven days a week, for a year. It was insane. When I left the family hired FIVE women to do shift work!!!!

    People with dementia don't make the rules. Even if they don't like you leaving them in somebody else' s care, it's not their decision. And I don't mean that to sound cruel. We are better able to be loving and compassionate when we've had regular time off. Please arrange whatever help you can come up with such as a combination of family, friends, self-help groups, and professionals.

    All the best to you and your husband.
    1628 days ago
  • JEANNE229
    What a VERY hard thing to live with. Just remember, YOU are important, too, and don't give up living. Maybe some care givers could help you "get out" once in a while.
    1629 days ago
    I am sending hugs and prayers your way and will continue to do so. I just took my Mom to the doctor today and got the diagnosis - the last two weeks have been incredibly stressful on me. I can't imagine you going through this for so long. Do you have any kind of support system?
    1629 days ago
    So sorry this is hard to handle, there are federal organizations that could help give you a break.
    HUGS and take care
    1629 days ago
    I have two adult children but they do not live near us and they are very busy with their own families so do not help us other than a phone call about once a week or so to ask how are we doing. They do not think anything is wrong with their dad except he is just getting older (75), they tell me to stop worrying so much. My husband sounds fine on the phone with them then in 5 minutes he has forgotten who he was talking to. emoticon
    1629 days ago
    I do know how you feel my husband has Altzeimers not too bad yet but I reoognise so of the things your describe. We should chat more as friends? Look after yourself Ree

    1629 days ago
    I am so sorry - I hope you have family support to deal with this sad issue. Please take care of yourself♥
    1629 days ago
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