Alzheimer Question

Updated on March 08, 2013
R.P. asks from Lincoln, CA
8 answers

This is my frst post although I read everyone else's everyday almost.

My mother lives with me and my husband (he is a saint) and has for the last 3-1/2 years. She worked until she was 82 (I know Wow and enjoyed every minute of it), but towards the end of her career she was diagnosed with early stages of Alzheimer and it started to affect her more so and the job kind of made her unhappy to the point where she retired. She is now 87.

She had a fall and her dementia/Alzheimer seem to get worse because of the trauma of a broken leg (femur) and arm and from the moment of the fall she has lived with us. Anyhow to the point.....I know I need to get into a support group of some kind so I know the things I am going through and feeling are OK having a Mother with this disease. We have always been close and she was like one of my best friends so it has been hard to see this...the child becomes the parent. She is not totally gone, but the short-term memory is really bad unfortunately. I am very honest with her when she gets frustrated beause she can't remember when she just asked or said the exact same thing. I try to answer the same question again and again and it gets hard to keep answering it over and over again or then I tell her she just asked that. I remind her that she has Alzheimers and takes medicine for it and I'm not sure if that is a good or bad thing.

I just wanted some input on anyone's experience with the support groups and if it did help you get through some of the tougher times. I researched some local groups so I have some in mind to go to.

I just need some input if anyone has any experiences they can share.

Thanks so much!!

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So What Happened?

Just to let you know....I went to my first support group last week with a friend of mine and even though it was a bit hard to speak and say it out loud in front of people I just met I did find that it helped and I will go again. They gave me lots of literature and a book to read and they just let me talk. I knew/know I am not alone, but talking to people who are going through it or had gone through having someone with Alzheimer's does help. It is what I need. Thank you all for your responses and I know I need time for myself and I will be sure to take time to smell the roses :)))))) and also plan for the future and what may come

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answers from New York on

It will only get worse. Have you looked into an assisted living set up that has an Alzheimer's floor. That might be the best thing for all of you at this,point. They also have family groups which are a big help.

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answers from Cincinnati on

I worked first hand w/ alzheimers patients for years. I highly recommend you seek out support groups.
Also, I want you to be very open to the idea that the time may (and probably will) come that you need to place her in an assisted living or nursing home. ALzheimer's can be very unpredictable. Although your mom may not "wander" now, that doesn't mean she won't.
I'll never forget working at a particular facility when a new family was coming in to move thier mom in. This was always a very hard time for families, but this family seemed just beyond devastated. I went to help w/ the move in process and learned that the husband/father had been caring for his wife. The kids had begged him to place her somewhere as her Alzheimers had been getting worse. He refused. She ended up slipping out in the middle of night, and when the husband realized it he went out looking for her. He found her crossing the street and went after her and he was struck by a car. The husband was killed, and his poor wife was completely oblivious to what had happened.
You can't do this alone! Being the caregiver of an Alzheimer's loved one can be just exhausting for you. But at the same time, it is usually safer for the person themselves to be in a facility w/ trained, around the clock staff. There are some really wonderful facilities out there. Where you can sleep easy at night knowing your mom is safe and secure.
In the meantime, definitely,absolutely find a support group for you and your husband! I commend you for taking such good care of your mom! But don't forget to take care of yourself!

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answers from New York on

My Mom recently passed from end stage Alzheimer's disease.
Support groups are helpful way to connect with others going through the same thing and offer each other tips and support on how to manage someone with the disease.

The book 36 hour day is very good

Alzheimer's Association: Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia

Another useful site that is fairly new but has easy to read information is

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answers from Kansas City on

Ask her doctor about support groups for care takers. My Grandma LOVES her support group. Gramps has Stage 4. She has been looking into "in home care assistance"...

I think my grandpa's doctor put my grandma in touch with her group. Maybe try local churches, they may know of groups as well.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from El Paso on

I don't have any suggestions on support groups (I'm sure what you've looked into will be more than helpful) but I DO want to say that what you're feeling is completely normal. It's hard not to get frustrated with the situation even though you know it's no one's fault.

All I can say is to try to continue to be patient. Eventually, even the older memories will start to fade and she will be gone without physically being gone. Also, there may come a point where you realize that you can no longer properly care for her by yourself (or even with your husband's help). Don't allow yourself to fall into a guilt trap if it comes to this. My grandfather (before he was moved into a full-time care facility) eventually would become so confused and frustrated that he was becoming violent with the in-home care providers and my grandmother. It broke her heart, but that's when my grandmother realized she could no longer take care of him at home, even with help.

All you can do is to do your best and know your limitations, both physical and emotional. Wishing you the best.

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answers from Los Angeles on

They are a great help! The people in my group helped me understand what was happening to him and cope with caring for Dad, and I learned how to be an advocate for his needs. This helped tremendously the last few months of his life.

Caregiving is a difficult job. Make sure to take time for yourself and your needs, even if it's just a few hours away from home for lunch or to have your nails done. I have a friend caring for her mother who is no longer responsive or talks. My friend was advised by the doctor and home health nurse who tests her mom's blood that she needs to take care of herself to be able to give good care to her mom.

God bless.

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answers from Chicago on

I agree with Devone. I watched my aunt struggle with taking care of my late grandmother and the guilt she felt for having to place her in a secure facility. It really comes down to the safety of the patient and the condition does progress sometimes w/o the caregiver recognizing the changes immediately. Trained professionals will recognize those changes and respond accordingly.

Just make sure you research the facilities now so that when you're ready to make the move, you're not moving due to an immediate response to her wondering off. Now is the time to research and know if you had to place her in a facility, which one you would feel comfortable with using.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

You should look into Coconut Oil for reversing Alzheimers. 5-6 tablespoons a day.

1 mom found this helpful
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