Watching an aging parent with dementia slowly decline can be painful, and when that cognitive impairment directly affects your relationship with them it’s even worse. It’s not uncommon for seniors in the later stages of dementia to totally stop recognizing and remembering others, including their own adult children and grandchildren.
When you’re a Sandwich Generation member who’s caring for an elderly grandparent with dementia, your kids may start complaining about the amount of time you’re spending with grandpa or grandma, instead of them. Explaining to your children why their grandparent’s behavior is changing can also be difficult, and you could hear questions like: “Why can’t grandma take me to the park anymore?”, or “Why does grandpa keep forgetting my name? Trying to process those confusing feelings can oftentimes make kids feel sad, frustrated, and even jealous.
We’ve all seen the stereotype of the angry elderly neighbor portrayed in movies and TV shows. But when you’re caring for a senior parent who’s aging in place at home, and their behavioral abuse is directed towards you, it can be upsetting and stressful. Typically brought on by dementia, this “responsive behavior” includes aggressive verbal and occasional physical outbursts as your loved one inappropriately acts out what they’re feeling. As a caregiver, there are several effective ways you can respond to aggressive language and behaviors.
Being a caregiver for someone who has dementia brings with it many challenges. One of these challenges is navigating public situations. The increased confusion and personality changes that often accompany dementia can make social situations stressful both for the person who has dementia and for caregivers. This can increase feelings of social isolation and caregiver [...]