Robert e. lewi 2007-10-03 12:20:42
My father remarked yesterday that the summer seems to have just flown past
this year. It has in some ways for me, too, especially with the realization
that I have been trying to get him to a neurologist for the entire summer!
Dad’s initial referrals – to a neurologist and to a sleep center (I observed
what I think is periodic sleep apnea) – were issued at the end of May. Dad
cancelled the first set of referrals, telling the office assistants who
called to make the appointments he had a cardiologist referral that took
precedence (he didn’t, but still thinks he has). I think the same thing
happened to the second set, after I called and had them reissued.
With the third set I waited two weeks and when I hadn’t heard back, I sat
down and stayed home and on the phone for another week until I had the
referrals and had reached the neurologist and made an appointment – that
But my heart sank when the neurology clinic’s appointment-maker informed me
the first available appointment was October 2nd! And it sank even further
when I realized the referral (with the second extension) expires three days
BEFORE that! Made the appointment anyway and then called the PCP’s
receptionist, who offered to try first to get a referral with a neurologist
who can see him sooner, and failing that, to get another extension.
But I also had a conversation with my father this morning about the sleep
center referral – he thinks he doesn’t need to go (the perceived apnea seems
to have eased in the past months). The PCP receptionist phoned me back two
minutes after I’d called her – to tell me my father had just cal her
himself, from his bedroom, to cancel the sleep center referral! He didn’t
say anything about the neurology referral – I think because he didn’t
remember it. Fortunately, the receptionist was on the ball enough not to
say, ‘Oh, your son was just on the phone with me!’ – she let it go and
called me back to let me know, and to say I could go ahead and make the
I don’t know if he’s going to refuse when I get the appointment made. When
I first posted to this newsgroup, people suggested that if he was resistant
to seeing a doctor, I use ‘loving deception’ to get him in. When I first
started posting, he would have seen through anything like that. I had no
idea that by the time I was able to get an actual appointment with a
specialist made, he might have deteriorated enough for it to work, and maybe
for it to be what I’ll have to do.
Kalinda 2007-10-05 00:45:04
Does they “Remember, you told me to come take you to your appointment”
work with him? Maybe if he thinks he told you it was okay, he will go
along just to NOT look like anything is wrong?
Jancan@blomand 2007-10-05 00:45:05
I can sure relate to all that you say. We have had to use every trick
in the book with my MIL. Things I would never do with a non
alzheimers person I have resorted to doing to this poor woman who I
love so dearly. What I have to keep reminding myself is that I am not
dealing with a person with a functioning brain in many areas. Many of
the tricks I use I learned from this group, ie saying “remember you
wanted to go to the doctor, so I made the appt.”
In many ways the hardest thing is getting it through my head that this
person won’t remember this or that.
I still think the hardest part is in the beginning. Now that Bertie
lives with us it is so much easier. It is very confining, but easier.
But I know that at some point it will get harder.
Darryl 2007-10-05 00:45:27
Ahh, the not-so-distant memores. In emerg., my Dad was getting PRETTY
agitated (this was in Scarborough during the SARS epidemic–try
keeping a mask on a 200 lb. man who doesn’t want a mask covering his
rather large nose 🙂
Anyways, the security guard saw that I was having difficulty keeping
him seated so he approached us and spoke to my Dad: “We need to keep
him out here for a little while longer since there are no beds for
him…just sit down with him and try to get him to relax.” Sure, my
Dad figures that *I’m* the one that’s all worked up…so he takes the
guard’s advice and has me sit down. That worked for about 10 minutes
but after 6 hours in emerg., 10 minutes was a gift from God.
Just another anecdote,
Gwen love 2007-10-06 07:41:45
Darryl, hooray for that security guard. Help is good no matter where it comes
If you believe in heaven and h*** only to die and find there’s nothing to it,
you have lost nothing. If you don’t believe in heaven and h*** and you die to
find out they are real, you can lose everything.
Robert e. lewi 2007-10-07 11:55:46
That’s basically what I plan to do – I’m not going to tell him about the
appointment at until it’s fairly close, and since I’m making the
appointment, I’m keeping information about who the doctor is close to the
vest so he can’t call on his own and cancel it. Then I’ll tell him it’s too
late to cancel, that he agreed to it – as you say, he will agree I think,
rather than admit he doesn’t remember; I’ve had him adjust accounts of
things because he did remember that the last time he told it I was worried
about him forgetting something.
And I will tell him he has to have it for his coverage, or in order to
change health plans (as he and I have discussed).