My dad is 82 yrs old, and always independent. He was displaying some behavior out of character for about 6 wks, ( strange comments, paranoia, anxiety), and he wasn't feeling well. After begging him to seek medical help ( he has not been to a doctor in 13 yrs, and never was in a hospital), he finally agreed, whereby he was diagnosed with atrial fibulation. He was put into the hospital, where he went through a difficult time of fear, and constant fright. ( I was told psychosis is common with A-fib; also the fact he was in the hospital for the first time). Add to that, doctors saw a small stroke has occurred at some point, not recent.
Now that he is back home, he refuses to see the visiting nurse, refuses follow up care, and is combative about his meds. He's awake round the clock, wants to do home repairs, to drive...I can't seem to calm him down, and if I mention 'doctor' or blood test, he gets upset, and begins screaming.
This morning, in one of his fits, he raised his hand to me.
Im at a loss here, because there is no way I can control him long term, nor can I afford to have round the clock care. He will not go to any facility willingly. I already know this, because of his paranoia. ( he calls hospitals 'prison').
Im all alone in this. Does anyone have any suggestions?

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I'm afraid I don't have any real words of wisdom for you, but I want to encourage you to try to get your Dad into assisted living, if at all possible--for your safety and for his. Be sure and talk with his doctor about the psychosis. He may be able to suggest a medication that would assist with that--although I understand your Dad isn't cooperative about meds.

Does your Dad have any close friends who might encourage him to consider a move? Is there a trusted pastor who might help with the conversation? I'm afraid he's not going to cooperate with anything you suggest (it's probably not personal--just his fierce independence, fears, and the effects of the stroke/illness).

You might also identify a good ALF that you think would be suitable for him, and then talk with the director there to see if he/she has suggestions for getting your Dad into residence there. For example, if there's a group of men who eat lunc together frequently, they might be willing to incude him one day so he can begin to establish some relationships. What profession/career was your Dad in before retiring? You might be able to convince him that he would be helping the other residents at the ALF by moving in (i.e., if he was teacher, he might be able to teach a course in something at the ALF; if he was a repair person, maybe he could "shadow" the maintenance crew at the ALF. Obviously, this kind of thing would probably be more likely at a smaller facility than at a larger one.)

I wish I could be more helpful, but I do want to encourage you that you're asking the right questions. As difficult as this period is for you and for your father, he is fortunate to have a child who is trying to care for him.
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