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Old 01-25-2013, 02:38 PM   #1
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Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Hi Everyone, I think I just need to vent, maybe it help me to feel some better this afternoon.

My husband got very upset with me again today because our pharamacy or doctor made a mistake (again) with one of his prescriptions which I picked up. Our insurance co. pays for a 90 day Rx but for some reason I only got a 30 day today. When I picked it up I said please make sure it is for 90 days, the reply was OK. We have to pay the same $ for one pill or 90 pills so why only get 30?

He threw the bottle at me, yelled at me then went to the phone and called the pharamacy. They talked to him about something else telling him he had other Rx's there to pick up even though he doesn't need them right now.
He ended the call without finding out anything about the reason for his call, the Rx we had already picked up. He did not remember! He told me I needed to go pick up the other prescriptions. When I told him no I didn't he began yelling at me again then went to his TV room, slammed the door. Come into the kitchen threw his coffee cup into the sink splashing coffee onto the counter and wall. The cup did not break, it's plastic.

It is something everyday for him to get angry about. At least today he did not try to hit me. I am beginning to think I need to see a doctor about how I feel all the time, it is getting very depressing for me. This has gone on with him for about 5 years now with the last 3 being very bad. His temper/anger/aggression, whatever it is, is getting more than I can handle mentally.

He is also depressed lately. He sits with his head down looking like he has given up on life. I have tried talking with him about this, even suggesting a Psychiatrist but he refuses that. Any suggestions?

 
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Old 01-26-2013, 02:31 PM   #2
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Hi Deenie,

I am so sorry that your husband is abusive. He seems to need anger management, this is beyond dementia. Not all demented people are so angry and abusive. Demented people get angry easily but your husband's anger level is too high. I suspect it is 2 issues: both dementia and anger issues. You didn't mention about the past - whether he was abusive before dementia happened.
Depression goes with dementia. However, you seem to be willing to take his violence and anger. It is not acceptable. For example, my late FIL had Alzheimer's but his anger was within the limit - he was never very violent; it goes with the personality and life style.
I don't know about your situation but I don't think you should take it. It is not your fault about the pharmacy situation. You have 2 problems here: first, you are abused by him and this is domestic abuse. You should stay away from it and make sure he knows he CANNOT do this. If his dementia makes this worse, leave him or stay out of the house and go to other shelter.
Second, he has dementia since you said he forgot why he called the pharmacy.
I sure hope you can ask a social worker for help.

Hugs,
Nina

 
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Old 01-26-2013, 04:49 PM   #3
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Nina, thank you for your interest in my situation. We have been married for 48 years and he has always had a very quick temper but not abusive toward me. He has never hit me but gets angry with me if I say the wrong thing or even have a look on my face he doesn't like. Also the tone of my voice angers him at times. For instance, he will ask me a question about something simple, non-important and if my answer is not to his liking he will get angry with me. I have to "walk on eggs" all the time.

For about 3-4 years he has been getting worse about this but this past June was so bad I called 911 and got him calmed down. The policemen did not do anything except talk with him until he calmed down. When they left, he said to me "I hope you are proud of yourself". He slams doors very loudly and goes to his TV room after these type of episodes until he forgets about whatever he was mad about.

In July 2012, I told his doctor about his anger and forgetfulness, repeating things, etc. He told me to keep my mouth shut but I wanted something done. He was put on Aricept and Seroquel then a month ago they added Namenda. He has had an MRI and memory tests but no name given or at least told to me as to the diagnosis. I'm sure it is dementia/Alz but not been told that.

The last week he has gotten depressed then angry almost daily, usually I have on clue as to why he is angry but he will say it's my fault.
His appetite is gone, never wants to eat and tells me he is not hungry.
I prepare him a plate and most times he will eat most of it. I don't think he would eat if I did not put it in front of him.
We never talk, he just sits in his TV room watching tv or playing card games on the computer in the same room.

I hate this illness, we never do anything but sit at home alone. Our children rarely visits so this life is awful, depressing for both of us.

 
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Old 01-26-2013, 11:26 PM   #4
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Deenie,

I am sorry that your husband has quick temper and his dementia seems to get worse.
It goes with the personality and dementia can make it worse. Have you ever considered getting part-time caregiver? But I guess he will be mad as well for everything. I hate to say this, when he forgets more and more, you may be able to come in and do something about it. He is still handling lots of stuff like the pills.
I just thought verbal abuse is kind of not nice, if it is not physical. No wonder the kids stay away from Dad. Perhaps you can talk to your kids to see what they think. Tell them the difficulty and they may help out with the idea. I don't know if assisted living or memory unit can help. He is too angry to have any change.
Please feel free to vent here. This site is great for support.

Hugs,
Nina

 
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Old 01-27-2013, 05:10 PM   #5
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Some anger is normal, but explosive anger over mistakes that were not even your own is not normal. He needs to be seeing somebody. You should leave if he refuses. You can only give up so much for a sick family member.

Last edited by chobo888; 01-27-2013 at 07:51 PM.

 
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Old 01-28-2013, 08:20 AM   #6
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Deenie, I concur with others. This is NOT a good situation. It is up to you to do something, but waiting it out should not be an option. It sounds like his abusive tendency has been an ongoing issue, but it has gotten worse with his dementia. It also sounds like you are afraid of him, and I think you are afraid for your own safety.

Remember that you can never supply adequate care to someone if the caregiver is concerned for her own well being. Please, you do not need to describe the details of how the prescription was messed up. Under no circumstance should you be subjected to having a pill bottle, or any other object, thrown at you. Do not make excuses for him, or for yourself. Please!

There comes a time for any of us who care for love ones with dementia that we can no longer supply adequate care on our own. In some cases, such as yours, the time is when the patient poses a danger to the welfare of the caregiver.

You know what the first rule of any rescue operation, be it Coast Guard Rescue, Lifeguarding, EMT? The first rule is do not turn yourself into another victim. One is enough.

 
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:42 AM   #7
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Deenie, actually this kind of anger can come with dementia. It is the mind playing nasty tricks on the thought process. What he is seeing and perceiving is not what you see and perceive. It is twisted in his mind. That coupled with the inability of the damaged brain to handle a situation and you have a recipe for disaster. Something simple will set him off. The part of the brain that controls emotional outburst and allows us to rationalize and live within social norms is malfunctioning so the situation escalates and he responds inappropriately, even violently. She snap back because it is our of the norm and it escalates. It's not your fault... and it is not his... you both are doing the best you can. It is the fault of the disease but that doesn't mean that it is or will be a tolerable situation. It can lead to disaster for you.... and you can be hurt.

Please do not depend on the past to predict the future in this disease. He always had a short temper but never hit me. That is because the part of his brain that allows him to rationalize his actions and respond in a socially acceptable way stopped him. That is one of the first parts of the brain that is damaged by Alzheimer's. So when he reaches that boiling point, as he has so many times before, there is nothing stopping him from taking a swing at you or throwing something your way. It's not acceptable but there is NOTHING you can do to stop it. That is why it can become a crisis situation.

What you have to do is to talk to his doctor. He needs a diagnosis. You need to know what you are dealing with. His anger and aggression has to be taken seriously and treated. There is medication that will help. But it may also be time for different arrangements for him. There are two people that are important in care of a loved one with dementia. We think about the loved one with dementia and what is best for them, but we also have to think about the care giver and what is best for them. If there is any possibility that you will get hurt, then you have to think beyond the status quo of hubby staying in the house with you.

If his doctor doesn't want to cooperate then find another doctor. Take him to a memory clinic, geriatric psychiatrist, or geriatric neurologist. Many General Practitioners are clueless about dementia and what to do with dementia patients. They throw Namenda and Aricept your way, maybe a little Xanax, Ativan, or Seroquel, and that it is... you deal with the rest. You need an advocate and a good geriatric doctor how understands dementia can be the best kind of advocate. As for how to get him to the doctor? The first thing you do is DON"T ASK! If you try to talk to him about his condition he is going to tell you how crazy YOU are! He doesn't know what is going on in his own head. You make the appointment, help him get ready, and go without extensive conversation. If he gets angry and show his aggression in front of the doctor so be it. That way the doctor will know what you are dealing with. You just have to get him there

If a situation does arise when you become scared, please do call 911. Be sure to inform the responders that your husband has dementia. Don't just settle for a little calming down period because that doesn't usually work. ASK that he be send to the hospital... not to jail but the hospital. Remember, you have to protect yourself!!!

Love, deb

 
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:46 PM   #8
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Re: Anger, Aggression in Spouse

Frankly, even my late FIL had some angry episodes - he tried to hit his caregiver thinking he was not fed with the right soup; he hit the nurse thinking she was crazy setting up the catheter for urination problem. He tries to move his cane to scare me from saying things he doesn't want to hear (about forgetting.) In a way, if we are not careful, he could really hit the girl and we may end up calling 911 and the police. But we called the home care boss/nurse and calmed him down.
What I am trying to say is, although such anger may come from dementia totally, the past may have some factor. e.g., my late FIL would never become a violent mean bum even when he was angry - he was still reasoning as a scholar.
So the past does have some basics. If the husband has been quite abusive verbally, there is more chance that you as the spouse will be hurt physically or even mentally. I believe verbal abuse is equally mean and cruel.
In any case, you need to watch out for your own mental health as well as planning for hubby's care. Consider a memory unit or AL. You need to protect yourself even if you love him and want to side with him. Looks like the kids may disagree and that is why they don't come to see Dad. Not many people can take the violence from the past and the presence as well.

Hugs,
Nina

Last edited by ninamarc; 01-28-2013 at 12:47 PM.

 
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