I had Mom's phone installed last Monday. She had a phone in the other facility as well. If she can find the number she wants to call written down she can still manage to call. She has called me every day since Monday. I have sticky notes by the phone with my number. Tonight she did something she has never done before. She called 911 to report that blessed van stolen. I had talked to her at 2:30. She wanted to know why I had forgotten her and left her there so long. I reminded her I had been there last night until 7:30 and she sent me home. I also reminded her that according to her calendar I would not be there today but I would see her tomorrow. She seemed ok with it but then called me back at 5:15 annoyed because nobody told her a laundry list of things. All of which she had been told. She had no memory of our earlier conversation. She was truly confused but I talked her down and when the caregiver came to get them for supper she happily went with them. She called me back about 7 upset again because she didn't know she was going to have to stay there forever and had no memory or me talking to her at all today. She seemed ok when she hung up the phone.... I thought. I got a call about 9:30 from the caregiver. Mom had gone to the desk and ask them to call her a moving van. They thought they had her calmed down and back in her room. Then the police showed up at the facility about 9. Mom had called 911 and reported the van stolen. She couldn't tell 911 where she was so they traced the phone number back to the facility address. Because the police showed up an incident report has to be filed at the facility. I talked to Mom later and she had no memory of leaving her room or making the phone call. She did tell me that Dad was upset that us girls were not home. Dad was actually sleeping in his chair. I told her I was home and ok.... she told me she would not lie to him. It was like she thought we shoud be home with her. That has also never happened before so her confusion is definitely worse.
I am going to talk to the nurse tomorrow about medication changes.... and call the phone company to see if I can block 911 (I doubt it) or what can be done. I will have to take her phone out if it happens again......
I will say that she is not as upset or agitated or crying as much as she was before we stopped the namenda, but her confusion is deepening, Her basic desires are still there and just as strong. She wants to go home (probably a place an time when her head is not confused) by any means possible!!
It's been a long day.... and I just needed to vent
Sorry sorry sorry -- it is so frustrating, what a day for you. Your mother's short term memory seems to be entirely gone. Yet she knows that 911 is for emergencies! Well that of course is old information .. which she still retains.
It is awful that she has not yet accepted the new place as 'home.' Obviously she wants to be 'home' with her husband and little children as it was 30 or 40 years ago, and no one can do that for her.
I don't think any medication can make her stop doing bizarre things like calling 911. Maybe the police ought to have that caller not blocked but identified as an Alzheimer Care facility - and yet, they cannot ignore a call because it could be coming from staff.
My Mom had phone service by which she could receive calls but not make any. If she wanted to contact my brother the staff had to call from the nurses station. It never happened. She had forgotten what a phone was for, and even watched as it rang and rang and did not pick up. My sister used to get very annoyed, call the nurses, ask them to go to Mom's room, call her again, and often the nurse had not yet arrived at Mom's room so the call again went unanswered. My sister thought the staff had nothing to do but sit in Mom's room to help her answer a phonecall.
If you can get your Mom that kind of phone service (it was available in NY) and call her instead of her calling you, it would save a lot of hassles. Of course she would not remember you had been there, called, etc.
It gets worse, and that makes it better (strange paradox) when she doesn't know or care who called or came to see her. It is a totally awful disease and you have my sympathies.
Oh dear. And I had so hoped things would be better with the move. But that darn van!!! It keeps rearing its ugly head doesn't it!
Whose van was it? Theirs? I wonder if you could bring her a hand full of cash and tell her it was sold...or maybe a large (bogus) check.. but then, of course, at the moment, with her short term loss she wouldn't remember it anyway.
I remember thsoe days of the constant calls of why why why. It was exhausting and oh so stressful. We have had several months of peace from those calls but I tell you that I worry that they might start again!
A friend's mother used to call the police on her! Then they would have to go down to the police station everytime with all the papers...POA., etc. etc. proving they were responsible for her care.
Someday...SOMEDAY..you will look back and laugh about the time mom called 911. I hope you can figure out how to stop it in the future though.
oh Deb....I hear ya about the police thing... my mom has caled the police a couple of times reporting that our daughter has solen all her ringsI am not sure how to stop it, good thing they live in a small town and are quickly identifided as having Alz...although once the police are called they do have to go and check it out regaurdless of how bizar it is or how many times they call..up here they do not have to file a report if it is found bogus...they just make a note of the call for future reference...
oh my goodness-what a day you had. my mother called the police on my father twice. she said he was beating her. when she finally went into the nursing home-the lock down part, they do not allow phones. my mom couldnt dial if she wanted to she is too confused. somehow your mom should not be able to call on the phone herself. if my mother wants to talk to someone, the nurse at the desk will call for her. good luck!
I talked to the rem coordinator today. She was so very nice about it. She assured me it was not the first time that had happened. Evidently, in the past, there was a little lady in Rem that would call 911 and report she was in labor.... repeatedy. They are watching Mom more carefully in the evening hours. Tonight she was back on the blessed van kick so they had her call me. Then the caregiver went back to the room with her to make sure they were safely tucked in bed. I have heard nothing in 2 hours so hopefully they are snoozing without any incident tonight.
I did call the phone company. They can absolutely not block 911 and will not even block local calls. The only thing they can do is block long distance and that does me no good at all. I did tell the rem coordinator that if Mom continued to abuse 911 that we would absolutely take the phone out. If there are 3 bogus 911 calls then we are charged here. That ordinance was put into effect because of defective security systems but I guess I will pay the price if Mom continues and I don't uninstall the phone.
Yes, Mom's short term memory is gone, shot, kapoot. She told Sister 3 today that she had not seen grand daughter 1 and her two great grand sons since she had been there. In fact they have been there four times in the last two weeks. She can't remember that she has talked to me after she hangs up. But in the moment I seem to calm her fears and anxiety. That was the purpose of the phone. She can call me and does. If I can defuse a episode it's worth the call..... I thought.
I understand your comment Martha. Mom is going to have to get worse to get better. She is at that point where she has some awareness but it is all jumbled up and confused. She makes poor decision based on fragmented information. What I have seen lately is a lack of agression, a lot less tears, and much less aggitation. She is still just as confused, if not more so, and determined to go home. The way to get there is the van. Meg, the van is Dad's vehicle. He was on his third Dodge Caravan when they moved. The last one, which is actually at sister 2's, is 9 years old!! So the van is deeply ingrained in both of their long term memory. In some ways it is better and in some ways it is the same.
I truly believe Mom wants to go back to a place in time, not just a place, where her mind was clear. That would be the home she remembers. Dad wants to make her happy so he wants to take her back home. His answer is to "get in the van and let's go". Mom usually responds that they don't have the van. Well, this is news to Dad and he get agitated. That agitates Mom who just wants to go home. So Mom tries to fix it for Dad. Calling 911 about a stolen van was her answer last night. Tonight I was able to convince her, for the moment, that Sister 2 was bringing her new great grand daughter to see her tomorrow so she needed to stay there. When I remind her that Dad has dementia she agrees... but forgets.
I went over and we had a good afternoon. Mom got her hair fixed, we went outside for a while, and Mom finally said it was time for me to go home because I had supper to fix. She ask me when I was going to see my daughter. I dropped them off at supper and a few hours later I was on the phone with a very confused lady. I know it's sundowning but dang!!
LOL Caring!!! You so made me laugh. Actually I have been very upbeat when I talked to sister 4. Mom is what she is. The very hysterical crying and extreme anger has actually improved. I will always think it was the Namenda/Aricept side effect. But her desire to go home has not lessoned. If anything she is more confused. She moves things in the apartment, forgets she has put them there, finds them, and assumes that Dad is packing.... because she knows she didn't do it. She gets anxious but not to the extent as before. It's just a matter of dealing with multiple episodes of her angst each day.
I am warned at the door that Mom is angry with me and said blah blah blah. I get to the room and get a hug and how happy she is to see me. I talk to her on the phone and she is fine, laughing even. An hour later she is ranting and raving that we didn't tell her she had to stay there forever. She blows up about all she has to do for Dad. In the next breath she refuses to be separated from him. If we had just been honest with her and told her so and so she would have been ok. And she wants to see what is upstairs. She's never been up there. Well... just seven or eight times that she doesn't remember!!
She was in tears when sister 2 was there today so I called the facility after I talked to Sister 2. According to the caregiver as soon as sister 2 left, mom and dad went to supper. Mom ate her supper, chatting with another lady, and then she and Dad went back to their room. They had no problem with her tonight. ::shrug:::
As for me... I know that all this is just a part of where she is in the disease. I deal with each episode. I don't expect anything from anybody but myself. I have received no help from sister 3 or 4 and haven't gotten any. But I am not complaining. They have to live with what they do. Sister 2 is doing all she can considering she is still working and will do more when she retires the end of may. Until then I will do what I need to do And right now.... I need to go to bed
I've been having computer problems yet again. I've just been able this morning to get online. Your Mom sounds so much like what is happening to my Mom. Except Mom doesn't get mad or cry. I have to be there every other day or she is completely lost. Sisters have not been helping very much so I'm starting to really wear out. They have children and grandchildren that need their help and mine don't so..........caring for Mom has been shifted to me again. Mom never forgets my number and calls constantly. Her short term memory is also shot, kapoot as you put it. I was there yesterday for 9 hours doing her nails, hair, laundry,and like your Mom telling her a thousand times that this is where she lives now. She still believes that she is "going home", Where ever that may be. I stay until she is put to bed and I feel like I'm leaving my little girl alone. Today she has called 4 times so far wanting to know where she is.
I do understand what you are going through friend. I have to run now to help my husband with some things. I just wanted to say "Hi" and I'll try to get back on later.
ps, Mom also is going to the desk now and telling them to call me to come after her. Then is so surprised when they take her to her room. How did all of her stuff get there???????? Lord help us all.
Just got back from my little one's cheerleading competition (they kicked BUTT and didn't bother taking names ). Sorry to hear about mom! I was thinking, well just take away the phone, but then again its not that easy is it? You may be able to call someone at the local 911 communications center (besides dialing 911 ) and let them know your problem. They may be able to at least give you some tips on what to do. My oldest daughter works at our local police department as a dispatcher, and she has mentioned speaking to people who obviously have some form of dementia, and it is not only obvious but they call repeatedly. Of course the police have to investigate all 911 calls, but they can be somewhat weeded out IF and I stress the if, you are in a more rural area rather than a city.
Try checking with the local PD!
Lizzie, I wish it was a small town and not a large city but it's the largest city here. I will just wait and see if she does it again. Then I might have to have the phone taken out. It is mainly for sisters 3 and 4 to call.... and for Mom to call me. The week she didn't have a phone she walked around with it confused that it didn't work.
I can so relate to what you are saying Chris. I can talk until I am blue in the face and next thing I know I am repeating the same things. Mom has had less tears and aggression since we stopped the namenda but the confusion and need to go home is there. She can still be angry and hurtful. Her new habit is moving things. Her jewelry box was on top of the refrigerator, there were cards in the candy basket and random junk in the card basket. The candy was in the cookie canister. She is constantly moving things and if she is distracted, comes back and find something out of place, she swears that Dad is packing to move home. Today I found the ice cream in the refrigerator and a salad frozen in the freezer!!
I arrived about lunch time and she was sitting out in the rocking chairs with Dad happy as a blue bird. Later she was weepy, confused, and wanting to go home. I finally took her outside as to not upset Dad and got her distracted. I left her in the commons area with some ladies chatting. I went back to the room to get Dad in the shower. She was back in the room before he was half through with his shower but in a better mood. When I left she was laughing with another resident and Dad at the table for dinner. Two hours later she was on the phone upset again. She told me Dad wanted to go home. In reality Dad was quietly sitting in his chair looking at his memory book. While she talked to me she got her night gown on and got ready for bed. Even after making hurtful remarks to me as she hung up.... she went right off to bed with Dad as if nothing was wrong.
Then there is sister 4. I haven't heard much from her lately but she made up with it tonight. She was once again on the phone whining because my daughter was being mean to her. She started by saying she was being mean, just like her mother. I defended my daughter and when she whined about that I explained to her that is what Mom's do. Sister 4 will be coming to see Mom on Wednesday but she's not staying here. I think I will take the day OFF!!!
For the next two weeks Sister 2 is preparing for her biggest project of the year so she will be basically unavailable. We have received no help from Sister 3 or 4. Sister 4 said Wednesday would be a day trip. She will not arrive after 11 and leave before supper time. The rest will be mine. I can't wait for school to be out and sister 2 to retire. She is willing to help just doesn't have the time.....
But I am doing it Sorry..... I just needed to vent after the conversation with sister 4 about my daughter....
Oh My Gosh Deb -- okay here comes the ten lashes with a wet noodle!
You have just got to STOP!!! with Sister 4. She called to whine about your daughter???? 1st off, why did you stay on the phone? Secondly, why didn't you just confront her and say "well, since you don't have Mom and Dad to whine about anymore now you're transferring onto others such as my daughter?"
You've got to tell her to GROW UP and that you will not take her calls if she's just calling to whine. Tell her you love her and want to hear "how's the weather?" or "what she did last summer, etc". NOT anything else.
She does it because she knows she can get away with it. You take it because you feed on the anger it causes inside you. STOP IT!. As you have helped others, I'm here to help you.
No one can make you feel a certain way unless you let them and you seem to let her -- my question is WHY? Especially when we're all adults and reach adulthood -- why do you revert to your childhood ways?
Know that I love you. Someone has to take the tough jobs and say it like it is and this time around its me. I sure hope someone other than me, reads what I do and takes it the way I did and want to shake you silly!
So vent, just don't think we'll let you get away with taking Sister #4's crap! because we won't.
I hear you Diane Sister 4 started the conversation by telling me she was coming to visit our parents on Wednesday... which is good. When she started in on my daughter I said what I needed to say. My daughter went through many years of depression and failure. She has come out the other side a very good hearted, responsible adult that I am truly proud of and she became my best friend. She does have a sharp edge and will say what she thinks. I applaude her for that. Last night I took on that same sharp edge and said what I thought.
I know why my daughter doesn't have a good relationship with Sister 4 and it's the same reason I don't. But in sister 4's mind it is all my fault. My mean daughter is just like her mean Mama!! HAHA I told her last night if she wanted to change her relationship with my daughter then she needed to do something different than what she has been doing. My child was no longer a child but an adult and makes her own decisions. I refused to take responsibility for their relationship and laid the responsibility squarely on sister 4. I minced no words, said what I needed to say, and then said good buy.
I was not upset about it and absolutely held my own. The intimidation was actually missing. She can no longer cut me off from information about my parents. Yes, it is frustrating to keep going back to square one with sister 4 but more so it is truly sad. She was not only after my daughter but another niece as well that belongs to sister 2. I guess since she can't get a rise out of sister 2 and I when she attacks us now, she will go after the children. I see it as Drama withdrawal. I am beginning to think about Sister 4 as I do Mom.... she is what she is and she can't help it
Then this morning I got a call from one of my cousins. His Dad died of ALZ a few years ago. It was so good to talk to somebody that understands and knows my family dynamics as well. He is my champion today
Okay, I got down from my soap box. You didn't say all that in the beginning otherwise I would've held off the 'wet noodle'.
You did good Deb. If she starts again, don't even waste a breath in the defending. I want you to say "it was nice that you called, I will not have my time eaten up with this when I have other things I could be doing. have a great day" and hang up.