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Info Seeker +
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎05-04-2016

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 81 of 249 (1,928 Views)

My name is mike.  I am trying and failing at taking care of my wife with moderate dementia and sundowners.  She becomes so angry that she kicks holes in doors, and assaults me regulary.  Recently she called the police because I got her the wrong kind of chicken.  The police said it would be best if i spent the night at a hotel even though i was the only one with any signs of injury.  So I packed my bags and had to leave my wife alone for the night.  I never know what will set her off so I just leep a suitcase packed and in the car ready to leave at a minutes notice.

 

My wife refuses to do anything but lay on the couch, watch tv, and order me to wait on her.  If things do not go her way she just announces that she will just call the police again, and i cave in.  My love for her and our marriage is jeopardy.  I have nothing in the way of any powers of attorney because she will not sign anything. 

 

I have become very resentful and at this point I feel like I have only one option.  She thinks she can take care of herself even though she has forgotten everything about daily life except how to order me around.

 

Well there it is.  Bash me if you want, but it does feel a little better just to get it out. 

 

  

Conversationalist
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎01-09-2016

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 82 of 249 (1,870 Views)
Hi Amber. I'm so sorry that your husband had a stroke and you now find yourself in this position. Could it be that the stroke damaged a part of his brain having to do with his emotions? Could he have sustained ome damage to his temporal lobe? This would explain his behavior as far as seeming emotionally distant - not hugging or thanking you, not treating you as a husband would a wife, and it could also explain why he gets his feelings hurt and cries. I would most certainly mention this to his doctor. As his wife, it's extremely hard and hurtful for you to deal with. Unfortunately, it could be that because of the stroke he cant help it and it isn't his fault. Please DO talk to his doctor. Amber, dear one, you say that nothing is really wrong, but you've been through a scary time with your husband and things don't feel right since it happened. It's quite natural to cry - a lot! Please don't neglect yourself. Set reminders to take your medication. Remember to eat. You can't help your husband or yourself if you get sick as well. My precious husband has advanced frontotemporal dementia. He forgot who I was long ago. He will never initiate a hug, I give them anyway. He seems to enjoy them. He enjoys when I rub his back or gently massage his neck, hands and fingers and speak softly and lovingly to him. Maybe you could try that with your husband and see how he responds. I say "I love you" a dozen times a day. I smile at him. And I cry - a lot. Good luck, Amber. You and your husband will be in my thoughts and prayers.
Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎05-03-2016

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 83 of 249 (1,846 Views)

I'm amber. I really didn't think about myself as a caregiver much until recently. My husband had a stroke on Dec 23rd. He was unaccounted for for over 19 hrs after it and the Doctors said his prognosis wasn't good. I was told he'd be fed through a tube, not recognize me, not have his mind or recover his speech. They expected him to die. I was in another state and rushed to get to him. None of the expectations they gave me happened. 4 months later, he's walking, talking, thinking, and regaining his right side functions is his total focus. He's so close. But he is limited and it puts everything on me. I miss being his wife. His health is under control - from his B/P to his blood sugar, to his cholesterol. He is so much better. Our biggest problem is that he won't exercise like he's supposed to, he has right side weakness and his face has droop. He works his arm. He perks right up during therapy and acts like he can do everything. He walks on his own with me just watching. The biggest thing for me is I never see his smile anymore. I never get a hug. I seldom get thank yous. When I tease like we would do with each other, he gets his feelings hurt and cries. The last thing I ever want to do is hurt him. Since March, my kids don't even check in anymore. The line between caregiver and wife is so convoluted. I find myself crying a lot. Nothing is really wrong. I just walked through the house and realized i didn't take my medicine today. I left my breakfast on the table. i didn't eat lunch. I made dinner and it was my first meal of the day at 9pm. My bloodwork is worse than Steve's and HE HAD the stroke...sigh. Yes, I am caregiver to my spouse.

Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 40
Registered: ‎07-14-2015

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 84 of 249 (1,841 Views)

What an awful day we've had!  I attempted to toilet my husband by myself and we both ended up on the floor with me falling on him!  Thank God neither of us got hurt!  Unfortunately I think he was so scared he couldn't even rollover onto his back so I could get him up with the lift so I had to call 911.  The paramedics really didn't seem to know what to do so I walked them through getting the sling behind him and then I lifted him with the lift.  I am so upset.  The last thing I want to do is hurt my husband, he's got enough to deal with.  And I have no one to talk to other than my therapist whom I contacted.  My friend showed up shortly after the paramedics and she was silent about the whole thing.  That really hurt me.  I know I shouldn't have tried to walk him myself, but he's been doing so well I thought that we could actually do it!  But this incidence has really driven home the need for me to use the lift whenever I need to move him!  I so want him to have the best life possible, but I also need to be aware of my limitations!  Now I need to forgive myself and move on.  Thank you reading!

Info Seeker +
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎12-18-2010

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 85 of 249 (1,860 Views)

I am so very sorry I haven't gotten back to you sooner.  My beautiful wife passed away on April 4th.  I have been in a fog for a long time and finally am now coming out of it.  Stay close to your husband.  Reassure him you will be with him always, death will only separate your bodies, but regardless of the future, you will always love him.  That something time or circumstance will never change.  I focused on my wife and making her passing as smooth and peaceful as possible.  I also focused on her soul and brought in our parish priest to give her the anointing of the sick.   I prayed the different prayers for the dying and at the moment of her death, I prayed my final prayer.  Prayer was not only a benefit to my wife, but it kept the family focused.  Once I saw my wife loaded into the hearse, I got in my car and travelled to a secluded spot and cried.  I have never felt such pain and sorrow.  I went into such a deep abyss.  My sister in law visited me the next day and we both grieved together.  She was so instrumental in getting me out of that abyss and I was able to get through the funeral appearing to be that strong figure everyone expected.  We still text and keep each other propped up.  I can't tell you how to deal with the pain because I'm still trying to deal with it now, but I have come out of the fog now and I owe most of it to my sister in law.  Find a family member so you can both lean on each other.  I know now that the pain will never go completely away, it just becomes less.  But that's OK too, you and I have an endless supply of wonderful memories to lessen the pain.  God bless you in your time of grief and God has already blessed your husband by giving him you as his wife.  I will pray for you both.

 

Regular Social Butterfly
Posts: 409
Registered: ‎04-28-2014

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 86 of 249 (1,836 Views)

lb50258545 wrote:
Hi Jane,

Thank you for your suggestions. We do have an electric bed, it certainly does save our back when providing care for my husband. Unfortunately my husband doesn't have the ability to follow instructions, he tries and I appreciate that but basically it's a matter of doing for him. As far as a "lift recliner" I thought about getting one but haven't yet. Currently my husband is going to bed early to late afternoon so sitting up and sliding in the chair is becoming less and less an issue. When I do his care alone I get him into the his chair with a Hoyer lift and usually manage to get him pretty well upright and I can usually pull him back a bit. There's always new challenges, it's just a matter of being adaptable. Unfortunately there isn't a neighbor I can call on and that's okay. I'm learning to adapt and make the best of our situation!

i forgot about one more resource. 911!  They do a service involving "Manpower" which simply means they will come to the home and lift a sick person off of a floor or around a bed or wherever he or she is 'stuck.'  They're not supposed to do this routinely, but in a pinch, they will come and lift someone safely and carefully. I did this recently for a patient and i was amazed at how willing and fine the firefighters were with the job. They seemed bored but perfectly willing. They moved a 94 year old woman from one bed to another as we moved her to another room in a facilitiy. They used a gurney and were super gentle. She was fine through the whole thing, and her family was relieved, as was i!  Your taxpayers dollars at work!

 

You have a great attitude!

 

Keep sharing... we all learn from each other...

 

Jane

Regular Social Butterfly
Posts: 409
Registered: ‎04-28-2014

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 87 of 249 (1,832 Views)

mg50694312 wrote:

My dear wife passed away Monday at 3:00 PM.  We were all with her, including her brothers and sisters.  We prayed the Chaplet of Devine Mercy during her passing.  The poem you gave me as been very comforting, thank you so very much.  I have never felt such pain as I do now, but I know it will get better with time.  The funeral mass is Friday.   It will then be time to say goodbye as her soul departs and to fulfill my promise to care and love our grandchildren.  I will never let them forget their beloved Nana.


I am so so sorry. I bet it was a beautiful, meaningful mass for you and your family. And now it's Sunday. And then it will be Monday. And the world will continue to go on, and you'll feel like, how dare it? Because there is a hole in your heart.

 

We have a grief community here, although for the most part i've been the only one posting. Perhaps you can put something out there. It's at the end of the thread found at www.aarp.org/griefcommunity.  I was just at a bereavement workshop and one of the suggestions was to tell the story of the ending of the life, to write it out, either for oneself (as in a journal) or to read to a loved one. Or even in a blog or community like this one. There's something very catharctic about remember every detail you can, about her breathing, say, about something someone said, about how you counted her breaths... if you want to.

 

Thank you for sharing your journey of caring with us. 

 

She is with you wherever you are.

 

Jane

Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 40
Registered: ‎07-14-2015

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 88 of 249 (1,839 Views)
Dear mg, I'm so sorry to hear about your wife's passing. You did an amazing job caring for her and know she loves you for all you did and being there! I'm sending you lots of prayers and positive energy to you and your family. Now it is time to take care of you. In time, I hope you can come to once again enjoy life, your family and grandchildren! God Bless You! lb
Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 40
Registered: ‎07-14-2015

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 89 of 249 (1,812 Views)
Hi Jane,

Thank you for your suggestions. We do have an electric bed, it certainly does save our back when providing care for my husband. Unfortunately my husband doesn't have the ability to follow instructions, he tries and I appreciate that but basically it's a matter of doing for him. As far as a "lift recliner" I thought about getting one but haven't yet. Currently my husband is going to bed early to late afternoon so sitting up and sliding in the chair is becoming less and less an issue. When I do his care alone I get him into the his chair with a Hoyer lift and usually manage to get him pretty well upright and I can usually pull him back a bit. There's always new challenges, it's just a matter of being adaptable. Unfortunately there isn't a neighbor I can call on and that's okay. I'm learning to adapt and make the best of our situation!
Conversationalist
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎01-27-2016

Re: Is anyone taking care of a spouse?

Message 90 of 249 (1,606 Views)

My dear wife passed away Monday at 3:00 PM.  We were all with her, including her brothers and sisters.  We prayed the Chaplet of Devine Mercy during her passing.  The poem you gave me as been very comforting, thank you so very much.  I have never felt such pain as I do now, but I know it will get better with time.  The funeral mass is Friday.   It will then be time to say goodbye as her soul departs and to fulfill my promise to care and love our grandchildren.  I will never let them forget their beloved Nana.