A Short Dementia Update

My days are getting away from me, so we’ve bought a dry erase board and either D, my son or daughter in law write the day and date on it along with any appointments and chores I have scheduled.

We’re doing this because every now and then I do forget the day and am prone to ask “Is this Wednesday?”

I know I can look in the lower right-hand corner of this computer and click on the time and date and see the day, but it doesn’t always occur to me, plus the other information written on the board helps me remember, and I check off things as they are done. Today, for instance, is car wash day.

Hygiene is done in stages not automatically as I used to. I sometimes have to think about what comes next.

I still do stupid things, like getting in the shower with my jockeys on;):), and other things I won’t mention in the interest of brevity.

My life has become a sitcom.:smiley:



I mentioned this in the MMP, but I thought you might appreciate hearing it… My grandma who has Alz lost one of her hearing aids. Since it was gone she decided to throw the other one away. :slight_smile:

Heh! Yup, with me it was sitting on my glasses and turning left at a red traffic light, another reason I’m no longer driving. As I (and others) have mentioned, this started long before I began writing about it. I remember getting disoriented while driving on what was a familiar route and having to call and get directions to my apartment.

My GF at the time kindly called it being “geographically challenged”. :slight_smile:


My dad had the kitchen table covered in yellow post it notes the last 15 years of his life. That was his way of coping with his memory loss.

He stabilized for several years and then it got noticeably worse starting in 2007. He’d get in the car with mom and ask “where we going?”. He taught small engine repair for ten years at the Vo Tech between 77-87. By 2000 he couldn’t even repair his own mowers anymore. That really told me he was declining.

He died before it got bad enough to stop driving. He had maybe another good year or two before he would have stopped driving.

I forgot to mention that I didn’t turn into a couch potato. I do keep myself busy playing Warcraft and filling out online surveys and clicking paid emails from Send Earnings. This is a legit company for work at homers. The paid e-mails are 2 cents each, and the surveys can go to 5 dollars each if you have a lot of time on your hands.

Get up to $30.00 and ask for a check. When I get it, I usually donate it to the Alzheimer’s Association or the local Humane Society.

I get an allowance and it’s plenty enough so I don’t need the $30.00.


Upon rereading this post, I think I may have broken a rule and just reported myself for spamming. I’ll let the mods decide. If I did, I apologize.


No prob. I removed the iffy line.


Thanks, and I just “got” the description underneath your nick! very clever!!! :):slight_smile:


Heh, no worries, I get in the shower with knickers on all the time. It’s a running joke in my family. My SO updates people on it: “gracer did it again today”; “what, knickers on in the shower?”; “yup”. I dunno, I just don’t think about it before it’s too late :S


I think folks who travel a lot, like kids trekking across Europe, get into showers with their clothes on so they can save on washeterias?

I don’t have that excuse.:slight_smile:

I also don’t know why I misplace things. I’ll lay something down somewhere (a guitar pick, for instance) and not even a minute later, I can’t find it.

A common yell around our house is, “I JUST HAD IT!!!”.:slight_smile:

Poor D. I don’t know how she puts up with me. Look her up under “patient” in the dictionary and you’ll find her picture there.:slight_smile:


get a clock with date display, you can find them called “atomic clocks” which set the time and date based on radio signals from the government’s atomic clock. they can hang on a wall or sit on a table.

you can find them where the numbers and letters are 3/4 inch (day, date) and 2 inch tall (time). it is always accurate, easily read from across a room and doesn’t depend on a person writing the right date/day (and you have one less thing to worry about).

use this in addition to your message board.

There was a time when I might have thought of that on my own.

Thank you, johnpost.


I have these boards for my mother, but she still thinks every day is either Thursday or Sunday

I also use one to let her know whether I’m in the kitchen, upstairs, or gone shopping.

Whoah, I can’t imagine having to pin myself down to where I was room by room. We have one, too. I only have to write down if I’ve left the house, though. It also lists the emergency numbers and who they should call if they need something while I’m gone.

He needs one of those Harry Potter clocks, like in the Weasley house: a big circle with the arrows pointing to a slice of the circle that indicates what room they’re in.

Well, I just need the date and day and as I said, the chores. Our house is laid out so wherever we are there’s usually a tv on in the den or either bedroom and I can “home in” on the sound (like a pigeon:)) and find her. The kids live downstairs in their own apartment, but I never go down there, because the stairs are "basement type) and very narrow and steep and I have trouble with balance sometimes. No bannister yet, but that’s coming.

D tells me I talk to myself, but it’s nothing which doesn’t make sense, she says - just mostly talking about what comes next in my day. Teeth, shave, wash face, shower, etc. Then sweep or mop and hang up clothes. I find I’m getting that right most of the time.

We haven’t done the grocery shopping thing (where I have to remember 5 items), so she says we need to do that again. Last time, I think I remembered 3, but got into an argument about the change at the register. I was convinced the cashier had made a mistake and given me too much back. :slight_smile:


I am a woman, and so is my mother /life of brian paraphrase

Problem with my mother is “Out of sight, out of mind”, if she can’t see me, then she has no idea where I am and panics - never enough to call for help or anything. She also has no concept of the passing of time, everything happened hours, or days ago regardless of whether it was 5 minutes or 5 days ago.

I used to just have the “gone shopping” sign, but then discovered that I need one for every instance that I’m not in the living room, as she’ll think I’ve been gone for hours, and abandoned her. She has a habit of telling people that she hasn’t seen me for hours or days and has no idea where I am - when I’m upstairs on the loo. I have a few relations who genuinely believe that I do go off and leave her in the house on her own(!)

As an Alzheimer’s Advocate, ignorance of the disease is the number one problem. I’m sorry you have some clueless relatives, Corcaigh:frowning:


Thank you dear.

It is true that they do need to be educated. As far as I can tell not a one of them has a clue what Dementia is, or how it affects someone. Because my mother looks so fresh (an Irish expression meaning she looks very well for her age etc) they assume it means there’s nothing wrong with her.

She was in Respite on the Dementia ward, a cousin went to visit. There is a permanent resident there who shouts all the time. He’s not shouting words, he just makes a very loud noise randomly. Another is a woman who is constantly looking for her mother.

My cousin was disgusted at me for putting my mother in there with all those crazed old people! Another cousin who’d heard about my evil doing had a go at me over it. I said “but she has Dementia” to whit cousin 2 said “no she doesn’t”

And what would she know? She hasn’t been to our house in over 3 years, she hasn’t seen what my mother is like, and even if she did visit, she still wouldn’t realise what was wrong. Apparently it’s completely normal for 80+ year old women to think they’re dating Ryan Tybridy, or that the Queen was in her house last year, as was Pres Obama.

“Oh she has a great sense of humour!!”

No she doesn’t, she’s not joking she genuinely believes that Ryan Tubridy is her boyfriend, sure doesn’t he come to see her every Friday night for hours? (He hosts a 3 hour talk show on Friday nights), and she seriously believes the Queen and Obama were in our house - because they were on TV every night of their visits, and all over the papers.

She also believes that Kate Middleton comes to stay with us when “it all gets too much for her” and I am not allowed to tell people she’s staying with us(!)

I hope your family are not so ignorant Quasi!

Quasi, I thought about you and this thread the other day. My wife asked me to go to the store for her and I got half way there when I realized I was wearing my slippers. I haven’t worn them in the shower yet, though.