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Hi. In recent months my 62 y/o father has exhibited behavioral changes which have resulted in him acting unlike himself. He is combative, always arguing and refuses to ever accept he's wrong, everyone's against him apparently, he's saying we are disappointments and he's gonna leave our family and never return. He's irritable and isolated and it's impossible to speak to him. I've tried gently bringing up him seeing a mental health professional and he gets angry and tells me I'm the one who needs pills and mental help. I've tried to inquire if he's in a depression and he yells back "you are in a depression" etc. I'm at my wits end. I love my dad and I need him, I need him to be healthy and be around, but I don't know what to do anymore. I dont know if this is old age, or a bigger mental health issue. Does anyone have advice?

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Hi sorry I dont know how to use this very well so I dont know how to reply... My father has become quite verbally and emotionally abusive towards my mother, myself and my brother. He does not have a UTI, he's had tests done for his physical health which he maintains regularly. I am at my wits end and considering leaving him to fend for himself and live on his own. Which would be very difficult as I love my father but this isn't my father that I see anymore, he has become an awful person with no signs of changing his behavior. He refuses to see a mental health professional and I'm exhausted.
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Reply to ashleyb123
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Is he married? Is his spouse worried about this behavior change?

Do you live with him? How much contact do you have with him?

UTIs can cause weird behavior in seniors, but that is usually older than 62. Still, it is a very simple lab test and is worth checking.

Something is clearly causing a change in his behavior. Starting with his PCP for something other than a mental health issue, like a UTI, might be the way to start.
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Reply to jeannegibbs
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Ashley, FF is right. My mother already had dementia when she contracted a urinary tract infection, and that made her combative.

Is Dad still working? Could something at work be bothering him? Are there financial issues to worry him? If your mom is in the picture, could there be issues there?

Like FF said, he really does need to see his doctor. Level with him in a calm moment and tell him you love him and you’re worried about him.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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Ashley, time to have your Dad checked for an Urinary Tract Infection. Such an infection in someone who is older will cause them to be combative and just not themselves. Your Dad can be tested at his primary doctor's office or at an urgent care.
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Reply to freqflyer
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