Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Do I answer questions honestly?

This question and sexual function questions are probably the two hottest topics on the care giver's mind.  Every time I visit my neurologist or my psychologist, they ask me if I am suicidal or homicidal.  I always answer no!  How do they know I am telling the truth?  Now, just for the record;  I am not suicidal and I like women!

There are other, less weighty questions I get asked on a regular basis.  Are you OK?  How are you doing?  Is everything OK?   My GP always asks if I feel safe in my home?  I always answer yes because I don't want to be placed somewhere the government thinks I would be safer!  See, there is a method to my madness.

I read an article today about Alzheimer's and Dementia patients ability to act "Normal" when required, for a short period of time.  I hope they did not spend too much money for that study.  They could have just asked a few of us and saved the money.  I have know for quite a while, and so does my wife, that  can put on a show of normalcy when required.  Now, the length of time that lasts is diminishing as this thing progresses.  But, I can still pretend to be OK for a while.

So, how does a care giver or doctor penetrate that layer or facade?   Maybe some never do.  My Father in Law seemed perfectly normal until his wife passed away.  Then his facade of normalcy shattered and we all knew he had dementia.  But, as long as his wife was alive to control him, and direct him in his daily tasks, he seemed the same as when I met him.

Do I answer questions honestly all the time.  No!  Yes, that is an honest answer!  Sometimes I feel terrible but say I am fine.  Why do we hide the facts of pain or mental confusion?  To hold onto the facade of normalcy.

There are some questions I always answer with total honesty.  Like; Do you feel good enough to drive?  If I have the slightest mental issues, I will NOT drive.  Why?  Because one mistake will cause me to loose my driving privilege totally.  So, honesty is imperative here.  Also, did you take your pills?  Did you take the dog's pills?  I always answer those questions quickly and honestly.

My wife always knows if I am not telling the truth or all of the truth.  Sometimes she let's me live in my facade and sometimes she will pry and dig until she discovers the truth.  Sometimes like a game of 50 questions. Sometimes, that is painful for me.  But, she feels she needs to know.

So, now you know from one LBD patient that we are not always honest in our answers to your questions.  But, you knew that already.

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