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Posted by: Troy ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 03:49AM

I just found out that my father is in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. I've actually been worried about it for a while now. I've had a lot a struggles getting along with my dad over the years, but I was always happy to share my dreams with him about my intellectual life. Now, I don't know what to say to him. He's thrilled that I've become such a success in this endeavor, but five minutes later, he forgets what we were talking about. This is not going to be easy for me. I feel like he's fading away. In some ways, I've lost him already.

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Posted by: Tevai ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 05:06AM

I am sorry, Troy.

I really, really am.


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Posted by: AlexisAnne ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 05:26AM


If my mom reads this, as she sometimes checks on my Internet activity, she will probably say I am not old enough to be responding to a post such as yours, but I want to anyway. Depending upon medication and how well it works for your father, your situation may get worse long before it gets any better, but you are not alone. Others here can feel your pain.

I, too, am really sorry and wish I coul say or do something to make things better.

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Posted by: Troy ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 05:28AM

Thank you so much.

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Posted by: michael ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 09:12AM

I'm sorry to hear about this, Troy. If it would help, and if you'd accept it, I'd give you a hug.

My only suggestion is to tell your dad that you love him. It may not help him, but it'll help you, I think.

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Posted by: honestone ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 09:26AM

Troy, my heart goes out to you. My best friend from high school is going through this with her MOM.

And my aunt who I adored and who was the sweetest thing in the world came down with Alzheimers. My mom warned me about when I came home to see family. I lived far away and hadn't seen her for a year. Mom said I would be upset to see my aunt. I sure was. I knew her all my life and had two girls who knew her well was 20 and one was 22. Well, we go into her home and sit down and she looks over at us and says "Now, I don't believe we have ever met. And who are these lovely girls?" It did break my heart but mom had prepared me.

I think you must remember the good years and all he gave to you. Remember the fun, the discussions, the family joy this person brought into your life. If you dwell on the present the past slips away and it shouldn't. I am sure you will be a blessing in his life as he goes through this.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/25/2010 01:16PM by honestone.

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Posted by: Rebeckah ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 11:29AM

I understand a little of where you're coming from. My grandmother's interstitial lung disease has progressed to the point where she just isn't getting enough oxygen to her brain. She still remembers me, is still ALMOST the intelligent, capable woman I've always loved, but there is a loss of faculty for her. She's not QUITE the same woman. But I know it's not the same and I feel for you. Alzheimer's is a very tough illness to deal with. And with a rocky relationship on top of it... Well, you have my best wishes and if you ever need to talk you've got friends here. :)

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Posted by: Heresy ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 11:47AM

because she became very mellow, but the personality changes that accompany it can be brutal.

It's a different path for every Alzheimer victim, just like every ex Mormon.

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Posted by: AnonyMs ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 11:48AM

I have gone through this with my MIL and now my Dad's wife.
It's so sad when a loved one asks "whose house is this?" when it's her home. Or it's difficult to be misidentified. My MIL thought a great grand daughter was visiting from California but it was her ggd who lived near her in Utah.

I hope your Dad doesn't get "mean". Sometimes an A.patient says things that are awful. And sometimes the patient makes up stories about other family members. Memories get twisted and childlike.

Hugs to you, Troy
You are a good son.


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Posted by: Baptist Nevermo ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 12:39PM

I am so sorry to hear this. We lost my dad five years ago after a twenty-year downhill slide with Alzheimer's. Thankfully his decline was very slow for the first fifteen years or so but still it was painful to see a little less of him each time I visited. His last five years were very hard to watch. My father had been an internationally renowned scientist, brilliant in his field, and when he finally lost the ability even to write his own name, my mother wept.

I can't say anything that will make it better for you, just please know that many people have been through it and are keeping you in their thoughts.

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Posted by: wine country girl ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 01:13PM

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Posted by: Suckafoo ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 01:23PM

This part of life is just so hard. I'm glad he has a son like you. I'm so sorry!

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Posted by: loveskids ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 01:40PM

I can't begin to understand what you are going through Troy because this has never happened to a loved one of mine. I really must have been a very bad,naughty girl in the "pre-existance' because I had rotten parents and a rotten step mom. My dad could have cared less about me and both moms threw my brother and I to the curb. I'm really glad you have a loving relationship with your dad,but so sorry you are going through this right now.

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Posted by: vhainya ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 05:23PM

I've worked a lot with Alzheimer's patients and it can be truly tragic for everyone. I am very sorry you're going through this.

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Posted by: Johnny Canuck ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 05:39PM

My grandmother went this way too-my condolences to you and your Dad. First sign was when my sister dropped in to her apartment while passing through town, and Grandma did not have a clue who she was. The situation was compounded by alcohol abuse and in the end I phoned my Dad after I had visited on Sunday after attending a wedding in town, and told him he needed to come and pick up his mother and look after her. This was so friggin ignorant as I had two aunts within five miles and my Dad had to drive 350 miles to move his mother out of her apartment that week. Not sure what his living situation is, but if he is at home withyour Mom or other relative, the care giver will get exhausted, thus I highly recommend you start looking for a senior's facility where he can be watched 24 hours a day. In fact my Grandmother loved the one my parents placed her in.

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Posted by: Troy ( )
Date: November 25, 2010 10:30PM

Thank you all for the encouraging words. There's just one thought that I can't get out of my head as I'm visiting my parents this year. My dad, for the first time in my life, is no longer a threat to me. It's a sad irony that after all these years, this has been the thing that makes me feel at ease around him.

My relationship with him is so complex I could never fully describe it. Part of the time, I've craved his approval, at other times it was like he was my biggest enemy. And at other times still, I've felt an understanding between the two of us that is extremely close. But the desire to make him happy with me has driven me all my life.

I guess that's what it's like when you love someone no matter what.

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