Serra1 Asked November 2012

How do you know if you are being manipulated?

Follow
Share

My 79 yr old father just lost his home due to flooding from Hurricane Sandy. He had been living on his own with my cousin, who has elder care experience, coming in an hour or two a day to check on him, help with housekeeping, run errands. He has Parkinson's and a number of other issues. He is devastated by the loss of the home he grew up in, of course. He is currently staying with my sister and her husband in their very small house. My house is larger, but I am still without heat from the storm. He is driving my sister crazy. He will not make decisions or do anything for himself. He will not bathe or shower, answers, "I don't know" to everything he is asked. we know he is grieving, but he seems to be pretending to be much more helpless than he was before the storm. We have found him an apartment in his neighborhood but out of the flood zone, but he says he wants to stay in my sisters house, which is impossible. He has always been a difficult man, but my sister is fearful that he may be heading into dementia because of his unwillingness to do anything for himself. On the other hand, people outside the situation have suggested he is manipulating us. How do we know? Please don't suggest a medical work up. We have yet to deal with a doctor who doesn't respond to concerns about our father with, "Well, he's old."

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
6

Answers

Show:
jeannegibbs Nov 2012
If your experiences with doctors for your father have not been successful in the past, I suggest you find a new doctor for Dad -- specifically a geriatrician. A doctor who specializes in treating elders (just as a pediatrician specializes in treating children) will be very sensitive to what is normal aging and what issues to be concerned about.

If your dad will be moving soon, I hope that Sister can hang on a little longer and get through this challenging time.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

sharynmarie Nov 2012
You are being honest regarding not having patience to deal with taking care of other people. I strongly stress you and your sister get him in to see his dr. An antidepressant can be a big help for your father. I am sorry your sister is struggling so much with this, but the reality is that your father is the one who has suffered a severe blow in his life. This is a situation that is the same as losing a dear loved one to death to your father. You need to pull together as a family right now and put your father first. You will get thru this and it will make you stronger in the long run. Remember that God does not give you more than you can handle♥!!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Serra1 Nov 2012
Thank you for your support, Jessie andsharynmarie. I got him to make some decisions today about the new apartment he is moving to,but the problem right now is my sister. He is staying with her and she is on the verge of a nervous breakdown from dealing with him. He is almost nonfunctional in his fear and depression and her sympathy is wearing thin. I don't seem to be able to do much to help. We are new to this, and we feel overwhelmed. Neither of us have children, so we are not good at taking care of other people in this way.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

godandjesus Nov 2012
How can he be living on his own when he is living with your cousin?
''living on his own with my cousin''
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

sharynmarie Nov 2012
He sounds as though he is still in shock. What a loss to lose your home of that many years to flooding. At his age it is harder to come back from such a devastation. A life time of memories in one house, wow, I would be devastated too. You might want to try baby steps with him to nudge him into making some decisions such as has he gone back to his home to salvage what can be salvaged. Help him with this step as it must be very painful for him. Does he have insurance to cover to cost of rebuilding, renovating? I don't know if he would take an antidepressant to help him cope but it is something to discuss with his dr. even if you have to write a letter to his dr. addressing the issues he is currently going thru before you take him in for an appt. He probably wants to be near family now, a comfort he may not be able to express verbally, his fear is warranted given what he has been thru. Try to keep things as normal for him as possible by having your cousin continue to come over and help him with his routine.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

JessieBelle Nov 2012
You have been through so much with Sandy. Chances are that your father was very traumatized due to his age and disability. I've noticed that several older people become mentally blocked when under stress. I've wondered if it is because they are blocking input that would create more confusion for them. If your father was not manipulative before Sandy, he is most likely not being manipulative now. My feeling is that as his health is slipping, the one comfot he had was his home. Now that is gone. He is most likely very disoriented, so bear with your father as he gets his feet back under him.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.

Related
Articles

Related
Questions