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Alzeimers and the rest of the family

(6 Posts)
JessKM Sun 10-Jul-11 23:00:48

DH's dad has mid stage alzeimers and it has progressed scarily fast...two years ago we noticed mild symptoms, last week he entered a full time care home. Firstly, it seems so unfair that such a lovely man has disapeared as this thing has ravaged his body and brilliant mind, but also that other people seem to last years and years, and he has gone so quickly.

We visited him today, and he has always loved horses his whole life, the kids chose a model horse, they gave it to him and he made a comment about how the colour was awful, dropped it on the floor and walked away. I totally know this wasnt him speaking, he loved his grandchildren, but it broke their hearts and they cant understand, while my son is older, (10) you can reason with him but it still really hurt him, my daughter just cant understand, last time we visited he asked who'd had a baby, regarding my younger daughter...and my DD1 is really scared her grandpa is going to forget her too.

He's already forgotten my DHs name, and tonight this resulted in him crying in front of the children, it put me in an awful position as although I dont want him to hide his feelings from them, he really broke down and the children looked really scared. Even after he left the room it was so hard just trying to explain to them.

I really dont know what to tell them, or him...I want to make it better for all of them and just cant!

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack Mon 11-Jul-11 09:40:32

So sorry honey, my MIL has severe alzheimers now and we have told DS 9(8) that her brain is poorly which is why she asks silly things (ie, whats your name) and cries a lot etc etc. She has been slowly declining for about 3-4 years now and he is used to it and to be honest, takes it all in his stride. He is very patient with her, will walk along and hold her hand but I think sometimes he is quite wary too although he hides it well.

Alzheimers is so cruel. Sending you hugs xx

SleepySuzy Mon 11-Jul-11 09:43:07

Hi, I really feel for you. If it helps, my sister works at Alzheimer's Society and would be more than happy to talk or provide further help.

JessKM Mon 11-Jul-11 21:32:02

I know there are always people out there with bigger problems, but this disease just seems to heartless, to watch a strong man fall apart and become a child again, and I cant even fathom what more is to come, if this is mid stage...."the severe" just feels unbearable. It breaks my heart and Ive known him 8 years, i cant begin to understand what its like tosee your own parent in that way.
what sort of help can the society provide, sometimes i think maybe just having someone to talk too would benefit DH and my eldest, its his step grandad, but he's never been treat any different to the rest, and he worshipped him.

thanks ladies, just knowing theres 1 other person out there is like a hug in a box


saffronwblue Tue 12-Jul-11 09:15:25

My MIL has moderate Alzheimers. She is in complete denial and it is always our fault for not telling her things ( that we have told her 100 times) , the tv's fault for not making sense etc. It is hard - I know it is the disease talking but all my conversation with her consists of her flatly contradicting anything I say. My DCs find it very hard to deal with and tend to withdraw when she is in our house. I just tell them that is it a horrible disease and she is scared which is why she is so grumpy to us.
It is a tough journey for any family.

auntpetunia Fri 15-Jul-11 18:20:31

It's horrible to deal with, my mum has stage 2 alzheimers and the other day she asked me if I saw much of "petunia " these days? I just said she's fine! It was heartbreaking but there was no point calling her about it she'd have just got upset. My kids especially the youngest struggle, ds 13 copes well he is very patient and I think it helps that he remembers her bei. I well. Dd really struggles and I don't force her to spend to long in mums company.

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