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Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Really Big Change

A lot has been happening in my life since I last posted.  My mom who has been living next door to me for almost seven years has begun to relocate to a new city (Florence, MS) with my brother.  For many baby boomers, like myself, taking care of elderly parents is a reality that is tempting to ignore.  When my mom first came to live next door to me, things were really nice.  I got to bond with her for the first time, because initial bonding when I was young was prevented because of our large family and because she worked full time during my entire time while living at home.

Things gradually changed, however, as she continued to age and develop dementia.  She became afraid to stay by herself at night, and then gradually became irritable when I would leave for a few hours during the day.  We both developed frustration with this situation over the last few years until we  realized a change needed to occur.  After much "talking"my siblings and I worked it out, and I have a good feeling that our plan is going to be a positive one for all of us--especially our mom.

Something that I learned from my dentist today, who had a similar experience with his mother, was to always agree with whatever your aging (memory deficient) parent says.  Dementia zaps their ability to reason, so it is most often futile to try and change their mind about something.  In other words don't argue with them--you won't win and your blood pressure with rise. As my dentist said, "when my mom commented on the beautiful, bright moon at 2:00 in the afternoon, I told her that it, indeed, is a beautiful moon, and I believe that it is a full moon!"

2 comments:

  1. It is very much like talking to a toddler, except the toddler is teachable whereas the aged no longer have the ability to learn. And the elderly often have lucid moments so you never know exactly which mind you are talking to.

    Enjoyed your post! :)

    ReplyDelete