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Topic Travel, Hyper Mode, and Parkinsons? Go to previous topic Go to next topic Go to higher level

By dear On 2011.10.12 01:52 [Edit]
Spent most of today travelling by car and my nerves are spent. My husband tells me how to drive, where to turn, most of the way, whether he knows or doesn't know the route, he thinks he does, and warns me of so much around us. The verbalizing of his stream of consciousness, as he calls it, runs on and on, talking to himself as he does just about anything. Is this Parkinsons?

On one hand, it is great that after 22 years he is as engaged as he is in his surroundings yet tuning this out while sitting next to him and while driving through mountainous roads that are winding curves and wet from rain is nerve-wracking. He seems unable to contain the comments as if I ask him to just sit still and be quiet for a while, it lasts not more than a few minutes. Finally, I pulled over to the side of the road, as the tension was escalating into an argument, and he did quiet for a while listening to his ipod. It felt like I was traveling with a 4 year old instead of a 65 year old man. What do you do?

Prolonged meals with additional snacks or dessert tacked onto the meal as we are exiting the restaurant, snacking in the car, choking and coughing on the chips and candies he picks up at a counter gas stop, dropping food on the floor of the car, he's stressful to be confined with. I am exhausted, and have driven to a work meeting, and will be driving another 6 plus hours home (minus traffic). Days like this one I swear I will travel alone next time, yet we also get good days still from time to time and I don't want to miss out on what we can share now together if there is a chance it will be good. I got one good day with him out of the four day trip, and three of those days were just plain stressful.

Trouble is, I don't know when we start out what kind of day it will end up being until the behaviors start and how long I can overlook and cope with these unsociable behaviors. He uses sarcasm and makes snide remarks thinking he's being smart and provocative and I just want him to put a sock in it.

I try to plan in extra time but he sucks this buffer zone up in no time and it seems like we are late or rushing to keep plans we have made on the other end.

What do those of you who have experienced this do? Tomorrow is another day.

By karolinakitty On 2011.10.12 10:33

My guy and I travel by car a lot....He used to "give me advise" as i was driving... I just came out and told him to stop it....that it hurt my feelings that he thought that i was a bad driver..He said it's not that I am bad it's the others, but, we did work things out where he doesn't tell me constantly to watch out or not so close etc... i think it's honestly just a thing that a man has to go through turning over the keys to a woman..It's ego, pride and another freedom they have lost.... We have control now, even of the vehicle.....I don't think any one of us would bow out gracefully to this aspect of life... Ever since we were able to drive it meant freedom... then to lose that freedom is tough on the psychi....
Anyway.... we don't make restaurant stops, or convenience store takes a little more on my part BUT taking a cooler with drinks,sandwiches and snacks....seems to put a few extra penny's in our pocket PLUS...keeps a good diet because we choose the snacks...:) It used to be the other way around when my guy snacking and crunching would drive him crazy.....but it's what I did on the road...he used to not want to stop at anytime so in our van door I had a "stash" of snacks so i could still keep my munch We stop at rest areas for bathroom breaks which avoids going into stores...gas of course these days you can't just get gas but if you can plan to get gas WHILE he's might not lead him to the snack aisle, and like I tell him, I don't have to wait until the tank is empty..hehe...If we are staying somewhere overnight we only eat dinner out at a restaurant...and then we go all out for we are done for the night.....

By dear On 2011.10.13 21:10 [Edit]
My husband just confided that he has been taking Nugivil during this and other road trips, and when he drives. He began taking it November of last year when he told the neurologist he has difficulty staying awake on long drives. After reading the fact sheet on the NIH, I think this is the change in his behavior that I am finding so difficult. He is like a kid with ADHD that wiggles and talks incessantly.

He speeds and swerves so much no one will ride in the same car with him behind the wheel anymore, except for me, and this has dwindled to local trips. He acts like he is on speed. I now do the distant driving.

He acknowledges Nuvigil makes him feel hyper and he says to me today that he "doesn't understand why" he "can't stop talking like this," but continues talking my ear off all the way down the road (a 3+ hour trip). He sounds like he is drunk as his annunciation turns to mumbles, and just talks and talks. He moves around in his seat wiggling, reaching for things in the back seat and under the seat, sings aloud to music and slaps his leg and the door to the beat. The distraction is stressful, particularly in the small confines of an economy car.

Asked to be quiet, once, twice, three times, I lose my temper at this point, and he just laughs and makes a gesture that I am crazy, states so, and continues doing these things. So I've pulled over several times now telling him I won't continue the trip until he is quiet because I no longer think it is safe to drive under these conditions. He then accuses me of getting back at him, and trying to control him. This is a vicious cycle.

He likes the altered states of alcohol, marajuana, the high of caffeine, and now this drug, so I doubt he will stop taking it. I've suggested a half dose as an experiment to see if that gives him the boost he enjoys without winding him up like a clock.

I don't know what I am going to do to cope with his behaviors when he is in hyper mode. I am now on antidepressants and this feels like it is bringing me more peace but I think I am going to have to work away from home and sleep in a different room, and I doubt I will include him in on any more business trips because it's too much stress to deal with.

I have tried traveling with snacks but he prefers the junk food sold at the gas station and stores so the snacks remain untouched in the back seat.

Glad to be home and will be talking to the neurologist about the Nugivil. At the end of my rope.

By parkinit On 2011.10.30 16:46
dear -

Oh, how I have been in your shoes and my spouse was not taking Nuvigil. We were on a long trip (with me driving) and he was beating the dashboard of the car, would talk nonstop and when I tried to say something after he had been talking nonstop for 30 minutes, he sternly said, "Would you NOT interrupt me!" I told him that he had been talking nonstop and I was obviously not a necessary element to the conversation, because he rambled on whether I responded or not. It did cause some tension as with your situation.

In addition, I pulled over to the side of the road when my spouse would not stop beating on the dashboard of the car. When I asked why he was doing this, he said it was because he was restless and was bored! After you've been driving 4 hours, you don't want someone banging on the dashboard of the car!

I have to believe this is more than the med, but Parkinson's related since my spouse has the same ADHD incidences while stuck in a car.

My resolution? We no longer take long trips because my nerves cannot take it and he says he cannot sit that long in one position. His Parkinson's has also progressed where an hour-long trip is very difficult on him. I now travel once a year without him to see my family. He acknowledges he cannot do the trip and it gives me a few days of respite from caregiving, which we all need.

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