Taking Care of Elderly Parents: 5 Outrageous Behaviors That Drive Their Kids Crazy

Being a caregiver isn't easy. Taking care of elderly parents requires an endless amount of time, patience, and dedication. And sometimes, those needy parents do things that drive their caregiving kids absolutely crazy.

Here are some of the behaviors that make people say, "My mother is driving me crazy!," courtesy of the AgingCare.com community.

1. Abuse: Stories of mental, emotional, even physical abuse to the adult child are all-to-common. The elder turns on the one person who is showing the most love because they feel safe enough to do so.

What caregivers are saying:
"My elderly parents treat me like a whipping board."

2. Not showering: Elders who were once clean refuse to take showers, wear fresh clothes and take care of personal hygiene. A decreased sense of smell may be at fault. What your nose picks up as old sweat, they don't notice. Memory could be to blame. Without activities and appointments, days run together. There isn't something special about Wednesday -- it could be Tuesday or Thursday -- they lose track of time and don't realize how long it's been since they showered.

What caregivers are saying:
"Mom refuses to shower."

3. Swearing and foul language: Parents who used to be mild-mannered, proper, and would never utter a four-letter word suddenly curse like a trucker. When it happens in public, it's embarrassing; when it happens in private it's hurtful.

What caregivers are saying: "My elderly father is making sexual innuendos." 4. Paranoia, hallucinations and strange obsessions: Paranoia and hallucinations take many forms, from accusing family members of stealing, seeing people who aren't there or believing someone is trying to murder them. Obsessions include: Saving tissues, constantly worrying if it's time to take medications and obsessively picking at their skin. What caregivers are saying: "Mom has an obsession with saving used tissues. She stashes them everywhere." 5. Hoarding: From hoarding old clothes to spoiled food, elderly people's homes and health are risk when hoarding problems exist. What caregivers are saying: "My mother hoards spoiled food"
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