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Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 08/09/11
My mother was diagnosed with dementia and paranoia. My father is 81 years old and in fair health. He wants to correct my mother when she says something incorrect and he has to be right about everything. My mother accuses him of stealing from her. My dad calls and complains because he is tired of being called a thief. I tell him to just let it go, but he wonít. I sometimes feel he doesn't want to take full responsibility for my motherís care, and tries to make me feel guilty because I'm not there all the time. Does anyone have any advice for this? Any suggestions would be appreciated.


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Name: don
Location: texas
Date: 08/09/2011
Time: 01:21 PM


There are antipsychotic meds that will help your mother with her paranoia. Your doc will know how to help.

Name: Russ Copeland
Location: Missoula, MT
Date: 08/09/2011
Time: 10:03 AM


You may consider hiring a professional personal caregiver to come in periodically as it sounds like your dad is already struggling with managing her disease from an emotional point of view. Your dad may be overwhelmed and a professional caregiver also can give him-and you-some respite and an opportunity to get away for a couple of hours to regain perspective. Perhaps you and your dad can use the time to go for a drive in the country, go out to lunch, or attand a local support group together to help cope. Watching how a professional responds to your mom may also give you both some pointers to use. Hope my "two cents" helps and please take care.

Name: Chris Cremean
Location: Swanton Ohio
Date: 08/09/2011
Time: 08:22 AM


Many times it is difficult for a spouse to accept the changes going on in their spouse. Communications change and unless they understand the reasons for the break down, it will be hard to handle. My suggestion is to learn not to say things that challege the person. Keep questions simply, like do you want to wear this outfit or this other one, not want do you want to wear. This is too open-ended. Work with your father to see if he can make these changes. If not, then bring other caregivers into the situation.

Name: Connie
Location: Portland, OR
Date: 08/09/2011
Time: 06:37 AM


Try finding a support group nearby. Perhaps there is even one for men only. Sounds like he could use a place to sound off, and get some helpful feedback.

Name: Shelby
Location: Florida
Date: 08/09/2011
Time: 06:25 AM


D. I understand completely as my mother is going through the same thing. When she accusses me of stealing I have to remind myself that she is not feeling well and not to take it personally. Instead I reply that it must be someplace in the house and that I will help her find it and take action to do so. The issue is not so much that someone is stealing from her as it is they she misplaced it and hard for them to accept that they have lost control of things in their environment and would really like to have the item they are looking for. Humor really helps also! When you acuses me of taking something because she can not find it I reply with "The dog has buried it again because he wants to play hide and seek so lets find where he put it" or something like that. Good luck!



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