Does your loved one sneak up behind you and scare you?

Suzanne FiscelIa, PA-C, BCPA / February 1, 2022

“My spouse follows me around the house all day long – he is driving me crazy!!!

Soooooo many of you can relate to this member’s lament. I KNOW you do.

More than likely, they are “shadowing” you for one or all of these reasons:

  • They are fearful if they cannot see you.
  • They fear you won’t come back if you leave.
  • They are bored.

In either case, your senior may be a candidate for an Adult Activity Day Center (otherwise known as Adult Day Care) where they can make friends while participating in activities and you can have some alone time.

(While this is a great idea and best for you and them, the cost can be a problem. Even so, you won’t know until you try. So, call the adult daycare centers in your area. Our members (with the help of Kat, our membership resource coordinator,) has found solutions around this.

Many Adult Activity Day Centers offer snacks or meals and transportation. Most are safe havens where your loved one won’t be able to wander off.

Expanding the clock…

Expand their daily lives to include people they trust. This way when you leave the house your loved one has a friend to stay with. These additional people can be family, close friends or professional caregivers. Have them come over to help you with chores and eventually they will interact more and more with your loved one to create a bond.

While at home keep your loved one busy if you need to leave the room.

  • Give them a jar of coins and ask them to separate them into individual containers.
  • Provide them a box of loose ribbon and ask them to wrap each one around their hand and   then put in piles of the same color.
  • Have a box full of plastic containers of various size, shape and color. Ask them to match the tops with the containers.
  • Arrange silk flowers into matching piles.

Remember that dementia can make people feel insecure and anxious. If you are being followed, they are looking for reassurance that they are not alone. When they return, they have forgotten where you are and come back to check you’re still there.

This is a common problem with dementia. It is not going to go away. While there are many solutions, we hope we have given you a few here to offset the frustration you feel.

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Remember, caregiving is all about preparation and prediction. We know the prediction and can suggest the preparations…

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Suzanne FiscelIa, PA-C, BCPA

I know exactly what it's like to feel like you just can't keep up. Working a full-time job, raising 3 children as a single mom, and taking care of her aging mother. But after feeling lost, overwhelmed, and guilty for spreading herself too thin, I saw all her patients and their caregivers going through the same thing. I learned how to put simple systems in place to keep my life free from distractions, find free time to do the things I wanted, and enjoy my family along the way. These simple step-by-step solutions have been shared with my patients, friends, and family. They too have found organization, confidence, peace, and freedom. Now we all live the life we love while caregiving! Come join us!

Hi I'm Suzanne

And my mission is to find you practical easy-to-follow solutions for everyday caregiving. Find out more HERE.

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