I spoke with Debra Kimmel, LCSW, a psychologist in Boca Raton, who provided additional insights and suggestions for how to support her.
If your father’s periods of confusion have been going on for a long time, your mother’s impatience with your father may also be a sign of exhaustion or weariness as she takes on more tasks and decision-making.
If you can, try spending more time with her to show your concern for her needs as well as those of your father. A regular lunch date would offer opportunities for heart-to-heart talks. Participating together in something she enjoys, say gardening, a book group or just shopping are other ways to have fun together. Alternatively, spending additional time with your father would give her more time to see friends so she would feel less isolated during this difficult time.
If you have siblings, it’s important to include them in a plan that offers relief to your mother in any manner that is helpful to her.