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Stubborn, angry & sad
Hi Barb, It helps to validate his feelings. Try putting yourself in his shoes. He has lost his freedom, his home, his ability to drive, etc. The best way to handle this is to say something like: "I know how much you miss driving dad. Tell me about some of the places you liked to go." Let him reminisce about this for a while and then try changing the topic. For example: You said you liked to go to Pete's Diner to get breakfast every now and then. I've been there and I really like their hamburgers. You know what? I have some hamburgers in the freezer. Would you like them for dinner? I also have some apple pie I made last night. Let's see what is on TV while you wait for me to get dinner ready."
That is an example, but the idea is to validate, let him reminisce a bit, and then change the topic to get his mind off it.
As for his driving his car, the best thing to do is to remove it from the premises and when he asks for it, tell him you noticed that it was due for an oil change and took it in, or make up another story. The important thing is to stop him from driving.
Just remember, however, that when you take something away, you need to replace it with something of equal importance if you can.
An example: If your dad liked to go fishing, try finding some fishing programs on the TV for him.
I just reposted "Caregiver Information for New Forum Members" this afternoon. Look below and find it, it is full of helpful information for you including ways to change your communication with him to help reduce or eliminate his negative behaviors.
Hope this helps, please stay in touch and let us know how he is doing.
Yesterday Dad expressed to 2 of my siblings that he feels like he is in prison, living with us. My sister offered to take him out, he declined? Saying it's too cold.
This morning he was crying because she has to use the steep steps to her bedroom (she's staying with us while the other main caregiver is gone). I reassured him that she is capable of taking the steps to her room and there is nothing to worry about. He's never been an emotional person. Nor has he ever been so unkind....this is hard.
With the crying and other issues involved, I'd make sure that you mention this his doctor. He might need an anti-depressant. A geriatric psychiatrist is your best bet in this area. Based on what we've noticed with my MIL, the anger and depression don't go away. You can learn how to avoid triggers (like taking him home and letting him see his vehicle), but sometimes you need a little help from his doctor.