The Rampant Spread of Misinformation
This shouldn’t bother me as much as it does… But it does. As my mom’s memory declines, she spreads misinformation at an alarming rate. Things like:
- She was given, “Hours, literally hours to hand in her license to the state.” The truth is she was given about two and a half weeks. It was toward the end of the two and a half weeks that her attorney found out there was no hope she’d be able to drive from that time until the hearing date, some additional 6 weeks out. This particular tidbit was told to me third, possibly fourth hand. The Island is small with everyone knowing everyone’s business.
- Her retest for her license is on 6/25. The fact of the matter is the state still has not told her when her retest is. This date is branded in her head (Ha! Memory) because some friends told her the driving examiners would be on the Island on that day. The problem with is that she will, possibly, get some friend to take her down to retest and will run into a bureaucratic wall of confusion in which she will defensively piss off any number of department of licensing personnel and waste the precious time of one of her very generous friends. Everytime she brings up the 25th, I ask brightly, “Oh! Did the state send you confirmation for your appointment?” She, defensively, says there’s too much paper around here (her Island home) to know and that she’ll look for it, all while maintaining she knows it’s the 25th. She’s told her attorney this too. Her attorney has unsuccessfully tried to redirect mom regarding this as well.
- Mom is now telling people she’s going to postpone the retest, on the 25th, because she can’t absorb the state rules and reg book (ya think?). Somewhere in all of the information, that’s in piles at her Island home, are a couple of sentences from the state explaining, and I paraphrase: When you are told your retest date, show up, because if you don’t, you will forfeit your license for ever and ever, amen (who knew the state quoted Randy Travis? ;->). I could be wrong in my interpretation of this information, but I’m pretty sure the state isn’t going to allow her to postpone her retest. I have not challenged her on this point as I don’t want to rampantly spread misinformation. This is merely conjecture on my part in response to her misinformation. Hopefully, Dear Reader, you are somewhat entertained…
- In prior posts I’ve listed additional examples such as, why she couldn’t complete an editing job, what she thinks my children do professionally or where they work, how long they’ve been seeing their sweethearts etc… The list is long and I will spare you rereading it all.
I know this disease is all about not remembering. It’s suffering for real from CRS: Can’t Remember Shit. And part of the disease is you don’t think you have a disease. When you confront the patient with their inadequacies, you are confronting them with themselves and if they are in denial, you’re up for a battle. Layer the patient’s innate personality, which is being concentrated at they lose their memory and social filters, into this picture. If someone was happy, cheerful and easy going before they were ill, that’s what gets concentrated. My mother was not of this personality type. Rather the opposite a lot of the time, actually. Dealing with an increasingly angry person, in denial about her illness, yet whose memory is declining almost weekly, who spreads misinformation about what’s going on and can’t employ coping mechanisms (because she doesn’t think she needs them and when she’s tried she forgets about them) is very, very, very challenging. Not to whine about me, but it’s like getting hit emotionally by the situation and by directly by her over and over and over again. No wonder I’m having PTSD symptoms.