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Old 04-07-18, 12:21 AM   #1
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Default Arguing with mum

Hello just wondering if anybody else has experienced any similar situations to this. My mum has HD, has been diagnosed over a year ago but we knew there was something up with her years before diagnosis. My mum is still independent but just needs my help with bills and appointments and shopping etc. But recently I can hardly have a conversation with my mum without it turning into some sort of argument or her kicking off. It’s the same situation with my brother and sister, anything we say to her will set her off. Yesterday I asked her what she had for dinner, as soon as I said it she was straight on the defence “what do you mean what have I had for dinner”. It’s the same if we say we will do something and don’t do it straight away, she will go on about it and not let it go till it is done right at that minute. And if it’s not done right at that minute she WILL NOT let us forget it. I can’t even tell if this is a symptom anymore, it’s so frustrating trying to talk to her and it always turning into an argument. Me and my sister and brother are trying to word what we say in a better way but it doesn’t seem to be working.
Anyone have any advice on what to do/if this is a symptom?
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Old 04-07-18, 12:38 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Hastings, East Sussex, UK
Posts: 1,152
Default Re: Arguing with mum

Hi Lucy (again)

First of all, you know it’s not your mum arguing or kicking off at you - it’s the start of missing connections in the brain’s computer. So lots of things start to get erratic, confused, irrational and go off-track. It’s really good that you have the wherewithal to look for relevant responses at this time.

Organisation, time and money = arithmetic and calculations. Everyday stuff like numeracy and reason within HD can become big issues if not dealt with great care.

Conversations, unfortunately, often have to be discussed with the hd-person in the boss’s chair (I’m in charge; it’s my life; …… etc.) There comes a time when it’s probably best not to ask questions for a while. People often describe these times as “walking on eggshells”. I think my most used words around this time were “What if we try …”

Jimmy Pollard’s book “Hurry Up and Wait” puts all your mum’s current symptoms into a readable and understandable format. What I have learned over the past 8 years or so is, first, to “walk in my son’s footsteps” and then, when I’d picked the hd out of his life, to travel along parallel tracks with the knowledge gained, dealing and coping with the hd-situations as they arise.

You do have to re-invent the way you approach situations and talk in your mum’s presence. I found this so difficult with my son - but after a while we agreed to disagree on many things and calm returned.

There’s something in very early hd-symptoms that neuropsychologists and neuropsychiatrists probably couldn’t come up with answers for. It’s only by being a family member and\or carer that you can gain the overall expertise to manage all the unusual, strange, idiosyncratic, abnormal, weird - and often funny - situations that you will come across.

And yes, there does also seem to be a hd-negative streak in recent and long-term memory and some innocuous situations will not be forgotten - but repeated over and over.

I think hd-people go on the defensive because they begin to lose that life force of socialisation, sometimes becoming very antisocial and then, later on, the hd-apathy, couldn’t care less attitude can set in. However, it doesn’t have to, and I think it’s how you re-educate yourself around your mum and gradually by slowly, slowly gaining her confidence she will begin to rely on your good judgement.

Apologies, Lucy, if this seems all over the place but that’s how HD is - it’s like a large jigsaw puzzle that has some pieces missing and others that don’t fit because they’re the wrong shape.

Hope you’re having a good day. Best wishes …

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