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Jennifer 3rd Dec 2019 Life Enrichment Director
Good evening,

I need some advice on bingo. Lately, it’s gotten very competitive. A near fight broke out between an AL resident and MC resident. He accused the other of cheating, I don’t have proof, though someone witnessed something that leads her to believe he is. I shut it down as best I could, but I had one resident leave in tears because of the tension in the room. I always wanna be fair and neutral and not get involved in the drama, but their was no getting around this one.

What do you do when your residents behave this way? It’s gotten increasingly worse. Poor sportsmanship, passive aggression, and our first big outburst today.

Any advise is appreciated. Thank you. Bear in mind, the bulk of the group is MC and we have one table of AL who tend to feed into it and antagonize MC when they make mistakes, ask for repeats, need additional help, or slow down the game in any way.
Laetitia 3rd Dec 2019 Diversional Therapist
Hello Jennifer
Nice to meet you.
Just wanted to say that I can totally identify with your Bingo predicament. I am working as a registered diversional & recreational therapist, in a dementia-secured facility in the Bay of Plenty, New Zealand. I have a male resident who cannot stand it that I am giving instructions to follow during exercises or any suggestions or encouragement to convince them to join in. This resident can be a challenge for me at times due to the fact that he simply snatches the ball, refused to return it and forced the rest of the residents to stop participating in an activity they really enjoy. One of my female residents is a person with zero tolerance for such behaviour and she would start yelling at him and won't hesitate to get physical. My main concern is always the safety of the surrounding residents within the reach of these two. When playing table games I always have chocolates to give out to reward the winners, but give the chocolates to everyone at the end in order not to contribute to any irritation or frustration the resident/s might have already. Believe me, I can totally understand your dilemma; it can be difficult. If I may suggest something. Maybe you can offer a reward based on pleasant and harmonious game playing and friendly but firmly confirm that you don't want any conflict during the game.
Susan 4th Dec 2019 Activity Director
This can be a tricky situation but there are ways to defuse bad behavior at an activity
Periodically I used to run a kindness group Often it was impromptu
I discuss what it means to be kind and maybe read some poems such as the ones on Golden Carers
https://www.goldencarers.com/kindness-poems/3851/
Then I would ask for the residents for their input
Hopefully this will put residents in the right frame of mind
Remind residents that bingo is just a game and it’s meant for people to have fun
Tell them to remember that it’s not if you win or lose but how you play the game
You might add a kindness element to bingo where after someone gets a bingo anyone who says something kind to one other person gets a small prize
Limit this to a few residents after each game but include all the residents so that everyone gets a prize
You might also say that participating in bingo is a privilege and that if there are people Will exhibit Bad behavior they will not be able to play
Hopefully you won’t have to ban anybody from the game
Also make sure to separate the people who would usually get into arguments and don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it


Another thought is that the person who is exhibiting poor behavior is sick or is coming down with something
UTIs Can bring on poor behavior in some people
I hope this helps
Susan 5th Dec 2019 Activity Director
Laetitia
Thank you so much for your input hopefully my suggestions will help you to let me know if they do

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