what to do when I believe my mother can no longer live alone

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Hi Inlaw Pat, I guess the obvious question is if your MIL has been to a doctor. Many things can cause confusion, fear, and paranoia. Sometimes it's something metabolic or physical and there may be a treatment for her problem. Because she is so fearful it may be difficult to get her to the dr, but perhaps you can just tell her you are going for a drive, or take her for ice cream first, or something that would be enjoyable rather than intimiating to her.

Good luck and let us know how it goes.

A little background on this. My mother-in-law has become increasingly fearful & paranoid. She calls in tears because she is afraid. She thinks people are watching/listening to her. She flatly refuses to move from her house and doesn't want anyone to move in with her.

She used to be very careful about the way she dressed. Now, when my husband stops by to see her, she may greet him in just her underwear.