Loading discussion content. Please wait...
Mom with Alzheimer’s ..
New here. My mom was diagnosed at 67 with Alzheimer’s. It’s been a roller coaster ride for sure, but a couple of days ago she got lost for the first time, and actually went missing for 12 hours. I’ve never been so afraid in my entire life, and I’m still in shock about it. I feel like it was my fault for putting too much trust in the AL facility she is now in.
Just wanted to tell someone who would actually understand, and not just say they were sorry to hear that.
How do you deal with the guilt when something like this happens?
That is scary. I remember when my mom had wandered. She had her phone with her and I was tracking her. I even called her and she wasn't scared or aware that she was lost. For me it was very upsetting. My question about your mom's ALF...are they claiming that they can care for someone who wanders? If not, it may be time for more assistance for your mom such as full time caregivers or a memory facility.
As for dealing with the guilt, you learn from the situation. Mom needs more help than originally though and moving forward you will make sure that she gets the level of help that she needs. Dementia is tough and symptoms can change quickly. For me, I prefer to be proactive rather than reactive. This doesn't sit well with my stepdad who prefers to think that things are fine, until they aren't. We butt heads on this frequently. From his point of view I'm overbearing and confining. From my POV, he waits for a preventable disaster to occur and then attempts to react to it. It's tough for all involved.
Persons with Alzheimer's symptoms can change on a dime and there is no way to predict what will occur when.
You probably want to meet with the DON at the AL to discuss what level of care they can provide and what your LO's needs are not only now but in the future. If they are just Assisted Living they may not be set up to prevent wandering.
Don't spend your time and energy on guilt, but try to get her into a place which is compatible with dementia patients and can meet her new needs as they arise.
Best wishes to you both.
Hi and welcome to here, unfortunately we all need this place.
You’re doing your best. You didn’t create this situation, dementia did, don’t blame yourself. All you can do is adjust to this new reality since your LO cannot. Adjustments along with acceptance will take the place of guilty feelings if you allow yourself to move forward. Since we don’t have a crystal ball, staying flexible amongst our diligence may prove more kind to ourselves. I have found patience is more readily available when I’m less rigid on the “rights and wrongs” of this dumb disease. We just have to ride the wave and find some positives somehow.
Thanks for sharing… keep coming back. Lots of wise and supportive folks here.
Thank you for the kind words. It’s been so hard watching my strong and independent mom become this new vulnerable child like person. I’ve been taking steps to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Put a tracker on her phone and got an air tag bracelet.
I took her to the hospital after she had been found, and she had almost gotten frost bite. She had been outside in the cold all night, completely defying logic.
This disease is from hell.
That sounds extremely awful. I am so sorry.
Is your mom in memory care or AL? Because if she's in AL then maybe she needs memory care? Memory care is typically a locked unit and it's often for people who wander.
I agree with the other posters to be kind to yourself. You can't control everything and if something goes wrong, it's not your fault. Just try to figure out, with the facility- what can be done so it doesn't happen again.