Follow
Share

Mom is 81 addicted to meds & threatened to kill herself, I called police & had her baker acted. Somehow my Dad got her out and released to rehabilitation since she was unable to walk. She cried and threatened to check herself out so my Dad got her released. She screamed at the CNA's, nurses & PT's. She is home now & I moved in. He told me I could handle her meds, but is giving her more than the Dr. ordered. I think she has Dementia but can't get any answers or assessments. My Dad has terminal liver cancer and he will die and leave me with this mess. Help!

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
What about some talk therapy for Mom? Even a clergy person could help, while avoiding the stigma of "being crazy."
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This is why people need to sit down and decide where and how they are going to spend their declining years, before they have to be forced somewhere. Is it too late to talk to them? Will your dad need Hospice and will it be at home or at a facility?

What happens to mom if your own health fails? There has to be some plans made, as difficult as it may seem.

I have 2 close relatives that have been on Xanax probably 15 years or more. It is impossible to overdose on, so I would let her have her Xanax. (You will be lucky if you don't need it, yourself.) You have said that you can't leave, so I won't say any more about that.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I'm glad she is going to see a geriatric psychiatrist. Please let us know how that works out.

Yes, Mom is probably worried about what will happen to her when Dad dies. And that is probably true on many levels, not just about being catered to. As Jessie says, losing a spouse is a very difficult thing to go through.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

@ JessieBelle-Thank you so much for the insight. They have been married for 60 years and never are apart and so dedicated to each other, which makes it especially sad. I am not sure she can even survive without him :(
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This makes me think of when I first got to my parents' house as caregiver 4 years ago. My father was very frail. He wouldn't bathe and didn't like to eat much except some sweets. My mother or I brought him all his meals in his chair. He sat in the chair all day, getting up only to use the bathroom and to go to bed at 5:30 each afternoon. We knew that he was dying, but didn't know how long it would be.

My mother was taking too much medication during this time. To watch my mother and father, you would think they didn't think much of each other, even after being married over 60 years. It wasn't until later that I understood how hard it was for my mother to watch my father dying and not be able to stop it. Intellectually I knew this, but it didn't really sink in until later.

I wonder if your mother is going through something similar, watching your father die. It might explain why she needs the medications so badly at the moment. It is helping her cope with the realities of loss. When a person is losing a long-term spouse, there is much fear, dread, and anticipatory grief. If you think that may be part of it, please be compassionate with your mother. Losing a long-term spouse can be like having a hole pulled out of you that nothing can fill. I wish they had an instant cure for grief, but I know it is something that we all have to live through.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

My Dad has been given a prognosis of 6 months - 1 year with his type of cancer. I can't in good conscience leave because he will probably need in home care or hospice. My Mom has agreed to go to a geriatric psychiatrist for an evaluation, it's a step in the right direction. I think she is scared of the fact that he won't be around to cater to her every demand!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Mimix, move out asap. By staying, you are enabling both of them to continue a reckless life style. You can call the police to check on them, but moving in doesn't fix what they are doing wrong.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Glad~An involuntary Baker Act is when a person is taken to a receiving facility for involuntary examination when there is reason to believe that he or she is mentally ill and because of his or her mental illness, the person has refused voluntary examination; the person is unable to determine for himself or herself whether examination is necessary and without care or treatment, the person is likely to suffer from neglect or refuse to care for himself or herself and such refusal could pose a threat of harm to his or her well being; and there is a substantial likelihood that without care or treatment, the person will cause serious bodily harm to himself, herself or others in the near future as evidenced by recent behavior.

Are there other criteria to know if a Baker Act is appropriate?

Yes, there is an additional criterion for a voluntary and involuntary Baker Act not included here. For example, a law enforcement officer may transport an individual to a facility for evaluation if there is reason to believe that the individual's behavior meets statutory guidelines for involuntary examination.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

JG-
What is the Baker Act?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I have been down this road, so maybe I will be able to help. My mother has been on some form of benzodiazepine since she was in her 30s. First Valium, then Xanax, now Ativan. She has undiagnosed, but unmistakable, generalized anxiety disorder. When I first came here 4 years ago, she was taking too much Ativan. She was also taking too much of her pain medicine and her Metformin for her diabetes. She was sick and crazy all the time. I didn't know how much was a real problem and how much was caused by the drugs.

Getting a handle on the medications was a major battle. When I tried to take control, there were threats of having me removed by police and a couple of instances where she tried to hit me. It took over 2 years for her to accept any help at all from me. When she finally accepted help, I tried to do it in a way that made her still feel like she had some control. I would put the number of Ativan she was allowed in one day in a bottle on the mantel. She could take them as needed. I put her other medications in individual doses in a bottle on her table. I had to (and still have to) do this twice a day. This arrangement works for her, because I am not lording it over her. I do check to make sure she's taken her pills.

We have the number of pills down now. The Metformin was eliminated with no affect at all on her -- I wish I had known that 4 years ago! Her Ativan use has gone down to usually two 0.5mg tablets a day. Her pain reliever is down to 2-4 a day. And she doesn't ask for any extra blood pressure pills now.

If your mother is afraid of losing control of her medications, something like this may work with her. She will likely fight you until there is some crisis. For my mother it was taking a double-dose of Aricept. The doctor had prescribed too high a dose (10 mg) to begin with. When she double-dosed, the result was terrible. It took her a few days to recover and she realized she needed help. I was more than glad to help her when she was ready. Now she usually realizes that I am working with her, instead of against her. However, we got into it again last week about laxatives. I had to get rather firm with her about them. (That was a 2-week long stress episode that finally resulted in me showing temper. I try not to do that, but it was the right response in this instance.)
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Mimix2, what are your main concerns about the drugs? Do they do bad things to her?

Has Dad been getting the prescriptions under his own name? Is he paying cash instead of using insurance? I am trying to understand how she is getting so much.

What was her behavior like that enabled you to use the Baker act?
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

She was talking about suicide because we were trying to take control of her meds. She also threatened to jump out of the window of the hospital...she is wheelchair bound at this point! Not gonna happen.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

i cant comment on zans, the moderator will behead me. a doc on cnn stated 2 years ago that nearly all patients come to docs looking for drugs ( the stone-y kind ) . if the doc doesnt hook them up he never sees them again.
sorry to hear your dads diagnosis, mimix. i wouldnt worry about your moms self medicating too much. many elders who lose or are losing a spouse are prescribed zan bars to kill the emotional pain. a blue bar will put your face in the dirt. they gave them to my mom when my dad died. she lost track of the next 6 months of her life - just like the doctor intended..
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Mimix, I am one that believes there comes an age where we should not worry as much about addiction as comfort. The main problem that I see is the doctor may not continue to prescribe the medication, since it was your father getting them. Will there be a problem there?

If you are managing the drug, you can make sure she doesn't get too much. You may even be able to cut her back some over time. Is there a reason that she is talking about suicide? Please tell us a bit more.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

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