I have only my own personal experience to draw from on this topic but my thoughts do make sense to me. I would love to know if it makes sense to any of you who are reading this post. So, here goes…….
When I think of my mom and her 50’s mind set generation, I try to figure out why she behaves the way she does. And I’m thinking that since she is a wife of the 50’s she mostly lived her life according to her husband’s wants and needs.
A wife of the 50’s would react to life situations in ways that would bring comfort to her husband. The husband is the bread winner who goes to work every day and comes home to a doting wife, and the wife is considered a ‘House Wife’. She keeps the house clean, she keeps the kids clean and always had dinner on the table the minute he walks through the door. She was not really considered an individual with wants and needs but she was, from what I can see, the care giver of the man and the man’s children. I’m thinking June Cleaver here.
So now I am wondering, what does that do to a woman’s self value and what happens when they get old and, what happens when they get Dementia and the vocal filters, or the words they use are no longer filtered and now they say whatever they want?
Do they turn to ‘man bashing’, and tell their husbands their real feelings? Do these feelings surface and boil over when they have had enough of being the cook, the cleaner and the perfect wife? Who are they really and how do they really feel about their life position that has always been dominated by men? Do they have thoughts and feelings of wanting to be the important one for change? Do they have thoughts that they want to be more relevant? What do you think?
My thoughts as I watch my mom’s behavior and listen to her words, is that she wants to be important. I am learning that she wants someone to take care of her and to help her and make her feel important. She needs someone to lean on, someone that will clean up her personal messes and tell her ‘Mom, I love you and it’s time for me to take care of you, I am so very happy to take care of you, it is time for your daughter to help you’. When I say that to my mom, she doesn’t get angry or frustrated, she doesn’t cry, she smiles at me and has that glimmer in her eye. I can see that she appreciates me and what I am doing for her while I’m cleaning her bottom.
At these moments I want mom’s experience to continue to be positive. I want to enable her to have a positive Mind Set even through this type of experience. There is no need to make her feel badly about growing old. We will all be there soon enough. But, I also think a Care Facility is an enormous help for my continued positive relationship with my mom……more on that at another time.