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Does anyone get angry at their LO
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 3:09 PM
Joined: 1/21/2019
Posts: 13

I’ve read a lot of posts and really appreciate the different ways people cope with this horrific disease. Lately I’ve been struggling with anger issues, both with my Mom who has dementia and my husband, who is having health issues (possible diabetes). I love my mom but find I’m becoming resentful of having to shoulder so much of her care. Just lately we’ve moved to personal care. She used to be able to do most of it alone but no more. Just this morning  she fell out of bed. The only reason I knew was her dog was throwing himself against the door to get out. She wasn’t hurt, just laying there. She told me she did not fall. She just sat down on the floor which was a lie. She never called out for help. She also wet herself and the entire room smelled of urine. I washed bedding, scrubbed the rug and her chair. I make and serve all her meals every day. I take care of her dog (he has a tumor in his throat and bleeds over everything). I’m trying to get her to walk a bit with her walker but she says she can’t. I find myself avoiding her unless I’m doing something for her, which is most of the time. I know it’s the disease and I feel guilty about feeling angry and depressed. I had a phone call with my sister and asked if she might help me and she told me in no uncertain terms that this was all my fault because I had mom move in with us. She had no where else to go. We do have an appointment with an elder care lawyer and will try to get her qualified for Medicaid and look for a place for her but that process could take a year or more. I guess I just feel so guilty for feeling so angry when I know it isn’t her fault.
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 3:33 PM
Joined: 9/8/2017
Posts: 2034

HA!  I would be a total hypocrite to tell you I don't.  Of course, I do get angry.  For me, sometimes still do, but I think it was worse or it got worse as my father was losing more and more of his abilities.  The reality that more of myself  I have to give up for another really is like letting go of who I am and where I prefer to be.  And that no one else can or will do it, you know you are stuck for sure.  Years of my mother (not dementia, but she did have mental and health issues), after she died, it was relief. father.  So having to accept the disease was very hard for me, and I was in denial.  But I think it was sort of survival and denial at the same time.  Anger sort of gets me going.

But, I figured I needed to join either an anger management class or Alz support group.  I decided to join the Alz support group, and that was part of my introduction, "I'm angry!"  I shocked someone there a bit, but everyone else there totally got it.  So, you are definitely not alone feeling that way.  You're gonna get a lot of responses on this one, for sure.

Rescue mom
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 3:48 PM
Joined: 10/12/2018
Posts: 809

Angry? Absolutely. I just don’t know what to tell anyone else what they can do about it, except maybe a support group or therapy. Or walk around the block (if you could leave). Or throw something (if you don’t mind breaking it, I’ve “broken” a few things).

My mother, now gone, used to fall down, then claim she meant to sit down. Never hurt, just stuck on the floor. Thankfully my DH with AD has not reached that point. But yes, I’m angry. I just can’t be angry at him because he can’t help it. But basically my prior life, which I was very happy with, is over. OF COURSE I’m angry! 

I am going to pay a physical price myself if I hold that anger, though, so we have to find a way to deal if we have any hope at all for the future.

Start now with trying to find help and/or placement, whatever you can, because it will never get better. It stinks that your sister is no more help. From what I hear, that’s not unusual. Maybe she will come around...meanwhile, it...stinks.

Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 4:03 PM
Joined: 12/21/2014
Posts: 560

Hi Lorraine.  I can relate to your anger!!

I moved in with my parents in early March 2018 when it became apparent dad couldn't provide mom the care she needed - and spent the month looking for/interviewing multiple MC centers for mom and when we were nearing the end of that process, at the end of March, I realized I could continue taking care of mom instead of placing her in a facility, so here I am.

There have been ups and downs, and it took some time but I'm finally into a routine.  I have the luxury of leaving/escaping twice a day - from 9 a.m. until 11:30 a.m., and then 2 p.m. until 6 p.m.   I, too, make and serve each meal - including feeding mom.  But, Dad is starting to decline more and more physically so I'm now really taking care of both parents 17/7/365.  My dad is more annoying/frustrating to me right now than my mom, and she's the one with advanced AD.

But, of course I get angry.  Initially at mom - I sleep in bed with her at night (there is no where else for me to sleep) and nights when she would rub herself, shaking the bed, I'd get up and storm off to the living room and try to sleep there, getting madder and madder as my brother's cats would run up/down the stairs, hearing the trains roar by, trying to sleep with the hall light on in my face.  Eventually it dawned on me to sit in the room next to mom and play on dad's computer since sleeping in the recliner in the LR wasn't working anyway, and playing on the computer was less stressful than trying to sleep in the LR recliner!

Recently, after 2 nights in one week of literally no sleep, I called mom's doctor and she was started on Seroquel and thankfully that has helped A LOT.  Mom now sleeps the night through and so do I.

I guess I'm "getting used" to things - I don't get angry angry anymore - but in the moment I do find myself exasperated and dropping the F bomb - mom won't remember that 5 seconds later anyway.  I mostly do this when her brain and legs don't communicate and she ends up sitting on the floor instead of on the toilet, or she decides to sit in front of her transport chair instead of ON the chair - and this is with me holding under her armpits and maneuvering her - I'd say 95% of the time I can get her transferred without incident but wow those 5% times invoke that F bomb.  This behavior typically happens in the early morning (5 a.m., 6 a.m.) when she needs to pee and I am not yet fully awake, so that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.

My dad is a whole other story - he does not have Alzheimer's - but he is unable to do things on his own anymore due to balance issues and chronic pain, and so is constantly checking and double-checking, triple-checking my efforts.  I have to keep reminding him I'm 60 years old, not 16 years old.  And, I've been whining about my dad now for months here in this forum and I am still unable to keep from getting frustrated by him.  I guess with my mom, I know she can't help it - but forwhatever reason, with my Dad, it's not the same.  Then I get mad at myself and feel guilty about it! 

Not sure my story will help with your feeling angry other than to let you know that you are not alone!  Hugs to you!
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 4:38 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 17061

I did and of course wish I hadn't....sigh
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 7:33 PM
Joined: 1/21/2019
Posts: 13

Thank you all for validating my feelings. Everyone on this site is a wonder. This is so hard to get through all the paperwork and know  where to turn. My calm is at night when I sit by my fire table and relax after I put her to bed. We are in Florida which makes evenings beautiful.
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 7:35 PM
Joined: 1/21/2019
Posts: 13

You are a true angel. I can’t do what you do. How old is mom. Mine is 92
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 7:36 PM
Joined: 10/25/2018
Posts: 238

Please. I was angry with my dad all the time. I knew he couldn't help it, I knew that when he was healthy he never behaved that way. But there was always that little niggling demon in my head saying he's doing this on purpose. It was no easier to get that little demon to shut up than it was for my dad to comprehend that the things he was doing were dangerous and hurtful to himself and others.
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2019 7:59 PM
Joined: 2/4/2017
Posts: 465

Every night, when DH is sleeping,  I promise myself that I'll try to be more patient...that I won't become angry ...but the next day, I always do..  I argue with DH and I should know better.   The stress just gets to me, especially when I have little sleep.
Posted: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 10:11 AM
Joined: 1/25/2019
Posts: 20

I feel your frustration! I find myself getting more and more angry with my dad as his abilities to do things for himself diminish, and I find myself taking my anger out on my fiancé and son. I'm finding it hard to cope as well.
Eric L
Posted: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 11:09 AM
Joined: 12/5/2014
Posts: 1050

I call it "falling down the rabbit hole". Every one in our house has done it. One day my MIL declared "I can do everything on my own" when the caregiver was there and I just lost it. I was in one of those "nope, we aren't playing that game today" sort of moods. Did I feel awful afterwards? Of course. Did I forgive myself? Heck yes!
Posted: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 11:13 AM
Joined: 10/9/2014
Posts: 641

I was angry, but, mainly perplexed with my LO at her antics, BEFORE I realized why she was behaving that way.  But, once, she was diagnosed with dementia and I understood that it was brain damage, it helped me process her actions differently.  Then, I felt sorry for her.

  I think it's understandable to be angry at a situation or frustrated that there is so much work to do.  We must exert so much time, energy, effort, patience and can be overwhelming.  That's why I got assistance for my LO's care.  When you overextend yourself, it creates a perfect environment for that kind of thing.  I hope you can get some help. 

 Good idea to get legal advice on the options.  I'm surprised it takes a year to get help with Medicaid.  I'd ask about fast tracking due to dementia.  I've heard of that somewhere.  In my state, the state provides AL and MC for those who qualify and it only takes a few days when someone is in need.  

Posted: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 5:38 PM
Joined: 7/12/2017
Posts: 1287

What helps me (sometimes) if I think its like I am in a weird movie, like Invasion of the Body Snatchers!  Yeah I get frustrated, less now, but I haven't reached the Pee Phase.  For me my anger is now towards losing my freedoms and feeling bad all the time about doing not enough, missing out on stuff, etc.  My mom isn't my mom anymore, she is this 80 year old lady I take care of out of obligation.  Next month I am touring facilities to see what options will be down the road.  I get angry, I break out in hives from stress, but I am learning to let go of being mad at her, its tough, believe me, what helps is refocus the anger toward the disease, the effed up medical care system, the red tape, all the rest of the garbage we deal with.  Self care is my mantra for 2019
Posted: Tuesday, February 5, 2019 5:46 PM
Joined: 11/3/2018
Posts: 123

Lorraine49 wrote:
I’ve read a lot of posts and really appreciate the different ways people cope with this horrific disease. Lately I’ve been struggling with anger issues, both with my Mom who has dementia and my husband, who is having health issues (possible diabetes). I love my mom but find I’m becoming resentful of having to shoulder so much of her care. ...  I guess I just feel so guilty for feeling so angry when I know it isn’t her fault.

Resentment and anger are common among caregivers. I find both of these to be daily emotions of mine. There have been whole weeks where I'm enraged maybe 80% of the time because not only is Dad being difficult, the folks around me who are supposed to be helping either disappear or fail me. Repeatedly. Like on a daily basis. This is why my support group calls ourselves "only children with siblings" every so often.

Give yourself the permission to feel angry. Remember, you are not angry at HER. You are angry at Alzheimer's. You are angry with the world. You are angry with a medical system that fails its patients all the time. But toss away the guilt. Guilt will eat you up from the inside out.

 Anger you can feel and learn from and build off of. Guilt will erode your foundation.

Posted: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 12:28 PM
Joined: 6/24/2012
Posts: 346

Yes,  I get angry.  Yes, I always feel badly about it.  Most of the time mom does not know I am angry because I wait until I leave to explode.  But fortunately, I am able to leave.  I feel for you. I could not do what you are doing and pray for you.  

I related one of my episodes recently to my brother and his wife.  At the end of it (they were incredulous at what mom was doing) I said to them... "Mom doesn't do this stuff just to be a bitch.  Her brain is misinforming her.  She is getting wrong information and she is reacting to that in a way that makes her feel as if she is coping with it."  They had never seen it that way.  But when you are in the moment... yes, it is easy to lose it and get really angry.   

And I find that she senses the anger right away.  As some of her perceptions are thwarted, others become keener.  So I try really hard to 'pick my battles'.   Good luck with this.  


Posted: Friday, February 8, 2019 10:58 PM
Joined: 1/28/2019
Posts: 22

Angry?  That's where I'm living 99% of the time these days.  I'm angry at my nephew for dying of cancer.  Angry at my dad for dying without really telling us what was going on with mom.  Angry at mom for being difficult even tho' I know it's the disease and not her.  Angry at one brother for having Parkinson's and acting like everything is everyone else's fault.  Angry at the brother who lost his son and "can't handle anything else".  Angry at the sister-in-law who's the RN and could see mom had problems but was told by her husband not to get involved.  Angry at my sister who is also killing herself helping me with mom but it just somehow isn't enough.  Angry at myself for not fixing everything years ago because apparently it's all my fault.  Angry at my parents naming me as POA for both of them behind the other.  Angry at mom's PCP for not pushing harder to get mom the proper care years ago.  Angry at mom's PCP for not letting my sister and I know what was going on with mom earlier.

From what I'm seeing on the few moments I've been on this site, the anger is not abnormal or unexpected.  It's just part of adjusting to all of this disease.  Honestly, I would not wish this disease on my worst enemy.   But being angry at the LO with this disease is apparently normal.  Do the best you can.  You will snap at the LO occasionally even when you know it's the disease and not them.  I wish I had some insight on how not to take things to heart but I'm at the beginning of this trip and just poking things with sticks at this point. 

Posted: Friday, February 8, 2019 11:57 PM
Joined: 2/16/2018
Posts: 37

Hi I feel exactly that way My LO has frontal dementia 

It is taking its toll on me I am so angry and I know it’s the disease but when your whole day consist of him lying on you you can’t help but be angry he.  Can still groom himself and fix limited food but his memory is gone he cannot do anything any more.Today while I was driving

He was so angry at me because I would not take him to the post office to buy a money order

For a phony sweepstakes he grabbed me I lost control of the car this is second time he is not on medication yet but our next visit to his doctor next week I am demanding it.This is taking its toll on me sometime I just want to leave him .my family moved to Virginia I am out in California alone my daughter is trying to help get me there soon as my house sells.I am trying to deal with these anger issues but he blames me for everything I have no good days any more

I never no what I am going to face.

God bless you and all dealing with this.

Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2019 12:15 PM
Joined: 2/9/2019
Posts: 114

Hi Lorraine49,

My heart hurts for you!  You ARE truly an angel and a Godsend for your mom.  I can’t imagine the fear and frustration those dementia sufferers must experience when they don’t have anyone to care for them.  Always remember and know that you are a wonderful person for taking on so much.  You are a good daughter. 

You are not a bad person because you are angry.  You are human.  If you weren’t angry you would be in denial—more dangerous than being angry.  I am angry too, but I am learning that if my anger goes unrelieved, I will do damage to myself.  You are experiencing Caregiver Fatigue, a real syndrome.  It happens when you are alone, when you feel guilty all the time because you shoulda, woulda, coulda, when you let your frustration out on your loved one and you know deep down inside that you shouldn’t, when the people you’ve leaned on all your life—sisters, brothers—don’t step up to the plate and don’t seem to care, understand, or are outright cruel—when the healthcare system fails and you’re just lost. And if one more “well-meaning”  person tells me what I need to do—as if I’m not doing enough—I’m going to explode!  I’ve been there, and I’m still in it.

I am finding though that there is help.  I joined a support group; I registered on this site; I registered to participate in a Walk in my area in September.  I got brave and started talking honestly to my family; I checked into the Carelink at work which provides for five counseling appointments free of charge—so now I am seeing a private counselor. And I am learning to see the small blessings in the “littlest” things: my mom kept thinking that she was in a different house every day; she kept thinking that we were moving every night.  She kept wanting to go “home.”  She has insisted on this for two weeks.  Just last night one of those ephiphanies happened.  I told her “hey look at your blanket, the one Debbie made for you.   That blanket never leaves the house where it is.  If you see that blanket, then you know you haven’t moved!”   It worked!   This morning she was happy and settled when she saw her blanket.

There is help out there.  I have found that special programs community-based programs and non-profit agencies are a tremendous help.  I called the Pierce County Aging and Disability Resource Center. They were incredibly responsive and within one week there will be a caseworker coming to the house to complete a nurse consultation and get Mom connected to a hospital-based community outreach to Alzheimer’s patients. (We are in Washington state.) 

I have gotten so much info and help from the Alzheimer’s Association.  Like I said, I joined an support group last year, and that was the beginning of my relief.   

You are in my prayers.  I pray that you will find the relief you so desperately need. You cannot do this alone, and we are all here to help you.  I’m so glad you’re on this site and that you opened up about your pain.  Keep being real.  You are amazing!

Seasons In The Sun
Posted: Sunday, February 10, 2019 5:41 PM
Joined: 5/21/2018
Posts: 197

Simple answer ---You betcha.  You will feel awful after but its a needed release for you. Don't dwell on it. It happened ,it's over go on from there. It's not easy . do the best you can. Can't ask for more than that.   Best wishes  to you.
Posted: Monday, February 11, 2019 8:06 AM
Joined: 11/29/2018
Posts: 43

To: Acoxe3:

No better words of understanding and reassurance than yours... so many parallels on so many levels - too many to list...though the anger, resentment and guilt are certainly near or at the top. Not productive to ask why this disease is so relentless in it's work to destroy; better for me to identify those who can and would offer help, in whatever form makes sense (counsel, compassion, camaraderie). I would hope that Lorraine49 can reach out to receive that for herself and her LO's.

To: all who responded:

Thanks for the reminders, and for sharing what I can take away of the experience, strength and understanding from them.

Eric L
Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2019 12:38 PM
Joined: 12/5/2014
Posts: 1050

Today was one of those mornings that I found myself getting angry with MIL. She usually sleeps until 9 or so, but I listen for her through the monitor and can usually catch her if she needs to go to the bathroom. Either she was super stealthy today, or I didn't hear her because I was doing dishes. No matter what, she gave me a not so wonderful surprise.

I found her sitting up on her bed in her room. No biggie, I figured she had just woke up and was ready to go to the bathroom. Almost immediately, I noticed the awful stench. Clean up time! As I was trying to get her situated on the toilet, she tried to sit on the bidet instead. Did the standard "I need to you to sit over here, please." At that point, she started cussing at me and hitting me and all of the other fun stuff. I can usually let stuff roll off my back, but I just looked at her and said (in a raised voice) "You are not doing this right now. I'm putting you on the toilet and I'm going to clean you up." So I put on her on the toilet and of course got hit and cussed at some more, but at least she was clean.

To add insult to injury, I saw a little stool in the bathroom that was a bit dirty (poo dirty). When I went to clean it up, I also found a puddle of pee. Apparently, she thought her stool was a toilet. UGH!

Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2019 2:02 PM
Joined: 2/3/2018
Posts: 402

All these response have so many excellent suggestions to help! I'm learning too!

In response to your original question - Oh gawd, YES! I get angry daily. I'm pretty good at hiding it usually. I too often make a mental note each night to be better tomorrow. I'm lucky as I split 24/7 care giving with my sister, and now a part-time live-in caregiver too, so I get more time away than most, and I STILL GET ANGRY sometimes!

A bottle of wine can sure make you feel better at night, though your next morning is rougher.

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2019 9:03 AM
Joined: 11/29/2018
Posts: 43

To: Eric L.:

Indeed...Do what you can to take of yourself and your sanity. God (or whatever works for you) willing, you will outlive her and her disease, and experience some peace to go along with the pain and sadness...just not today.

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