stefh1962 Asked January 2013

My father is overly-emotional and won't accept help. Can anyone relate to this?

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My father who will be 87, on Jan. 15th is independent BUT, worrisome for my oldest sister and I. He has Glaucoma, Arthritis, don't hear too well, and do things he's not suppose to! And he has a pacemaker!! I'm thankful it has not been a heavy snow, because he will try to shovel it!! He flooded our boiler 2x and this last time was just after the plumber was called to clean it and light it PROPERLY. AND I MEAN LITERALLY. We went w/o heat after Xmas when he called the plumber and the NEXT day (last Friday) he flooded it again. Then, his PRIDE gets in the way AND INSIST ON LIGHTING IT WITH KNIT GLOVES ON!! YOU READ CORRECTLY - KNIT GLOVES. He called again and Thank God - the heat was once again restored. My sister helps a Whole lot taking him grocery shopping, picking up his medication But she doesn't Live with him I Do. And everyday - I work my schedule around him because I don't know what he may plan and tell me the last minute. He's always trying to do something he knows little about(like the boiler) and reluctant to call for help until he gets too frustrated and my sister and I act as a Tag Team to make him do the right thing!! I'm watching him fight for his independence but, it's stressful!! We've became a tag team after my mother passed to accompany him to the doctor because he does not discuss what's going on with him. Here's an example: He would stop his meds just so he can drink. Not wine - Overproof bourbon straight! I accompainied him to his cardiologist and asked - by the way doctor is it alright for alcohol? My father looked up at the ceiling. The doctor replied, in moderation, and watered down. Oh? I replied, even if it's Overproof Bourbon? The doctors face turned Beet Red and replied, Mr. H, slow it down - in fact stop Completely. I know my father is still in the grieving process with the passing of my mother but, now after loosing both his siblings last year, his more emotional and short tempered. He feels my sister and I are always "ganging up on him". Is there anyone here who can relate to these scenerios?

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Jaye Jan 2013
I know that this is hard... I am attempting to take care of my Mom. My Father passed away 2 1/2 yrs ago. My Mom had a heart attack not 2 wks after my Dad's death. She also has some dementia. She was in her own home, and that did not go well. She was calling constantly and not eating locking herself out of the house, etc... We have moved her to independant senior housing It is a beautiful place and she really likes it. She gets one meal a day in the dining room with other folks and she gets housekeeping. Maybe this is something that would help our Dad. I would encourage you to check into it... take care.
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Daily activity at a Seniors' Center or a "to-do" list (of non-dangerous things to fix) may help. Your dad is looking for something to do. He wants to have something to fill his hours. You can make him responsible to find some of these practical things to do. He is not a child; if he wants respect then he needs to show respectable behavior. The alcohol issue is one that I am familiar with. My mother is in denial about her alcohol abuse. She will change doctors if her current doc mentions her alcohol issues and encourages sobriety.

The note from ba8alou recommending assessment is a good idea. Check for help agencies in your area. Your dad has lost many persons close to him recently and of course this is painful, but he needs to find a useful outlet to deal with grief, frustration, anger(?)
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Have to say that if your father is attempting to "fix" the boiler in your home, he is "a danger to himself and others". I would suggest a geriatric doc to do an assessment, or a rehab center that specializes in cognitive evaluations for the elderly. He may be "fighting for his independence" but he might blow you all up in the process. You need some outside assistance in dealing with him and placement outside of your home may be the safest thing at this point. So sorry that you're going through this stress. ~hugs!
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