How do I handle out and out temper tantrums when she go ballistic over something very small?

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the tantrum started over me turning the heat down 2 degrees..It was so bad she threatened to call the police and have me removed from the house (I live here), and I really think if she had been up she would have hit me. Then this morning she was slamming the kitchen chairs on the floor (my bedroom is under the kitchen) and it was 5 o'clock in the morning. There have been other incidents like this , this is just an example of behavior lately. I t seems the incidents have increased in the last six months. Is it time to see a doctor? If yes, what kind of doctor and how do I get this woman to the doctor, how do I approach this with her?

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ba8alou, I love your idea of getting some help so you can get away!
As for your mother, I also agree that sending her to a Dr would be a good start. Sometimes behavior changes in the elderly could be caused by Thyroid, electrolyte imbalances or a bladder infection (although if this started 6mos ago, I would think the infection would be pretty symptomatic by now).
If she is beginning mental changes from dementia, there are medications (i.e. Valproic acid) that could moderate mood swings. Ativan is also commonly given to help with anxiety.
Good luck, ba8alou
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botina56, the first thing I thought was a UTI [urinary track infection] which can cause a lot of unusual behaviors by elders. Hope this is something as simple as a UTI which is easily treatable. Have your Mom's doctor check for that.
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I would outline the behaviors that you've noted in writing and get them to the doctor before the visit. If s/he tells you that all her blood work is good and that nothing is wrong, it's time to find a new doctor OR get her seen by a geriatric psychiatrist who can evaluate her mood and behaviors. And we never tell folks of that generation that they are being seen by a psychiatrist. No, they're not crazy, but these days, there are good meds for the sane too. Rumination is a particularly destructive habit of mind.
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I will get her to her pcp. I will avoid her when she is in a snit. Your suggestions were helpful. I live with her, I moved in after my husband passed away. This change has only started in the last 6 months. I am also going to see my doctor to see about some help for me. I also think my son and his wife need to start helping some if for no other reason than to get me some time to myself because I am at her disposal 24/7, 365 days a year. I think I need some distance
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Is this your mom?

This is not normal behavior and I think she should be evaluated by a Dr. Start with her primary care Dr.

I agree with Jeanne, a few more details would probably help us help you find some temporary solutions until you can get her to the Dr.
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Seeing a doctor is overdue.

Your profile says her primary ailment is hearing loss. But something is causing these tantrums and it doesn't seem likely to be hearing loss. Especially if this a dramatic departure from her baseline personality she should be checked medically.

Does she have a primary care provider now? If she gets on well and respects this person, that might be where to start. But if that is not the case, I'd try to get her to see a geriatrician. Use any excuse you think will work to get her in. It is time for a flu shot. Her insurance wants all seniors to have a check up. I don't think I'd mention it had to do with her tantrums. But do anything you think might work.

Write a brief explanation of what concerns you about your mother's behavior and send it in to the doctor before he or she sees your mother. If at all possible, go into the exam room with Mom.

The pcp or geriatrician may refer Mom to a specialist.

How long have you lived with your Mom? Her house or yours? Do you work? Do you take care of Mom? A little more detail may help others respond.
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Oh, my gosh. I know you're walking on eggshells. Mine went through rage for a year or so. It was very emotionally abusive. I don't know what causes it. With my mother, who has dementia, it was like she thought of something, then ruminated on it for a while until it turned into rage. She has done this since I've been a teenager, so it isn't anything new. I believe it is part of the problem that causes her to be obsessively worried and anxious. After ruminating for a while, she will have turned a mole hill into a mountain. Woe be to anyone around when she is like that.

I would talk to the doctor about it. Anger and anxiety are often two sides of the same coin. It may be that she needs some help handling the emotions she is going through.

The thing I found that helped me most when it was happening was to try to tell myself that it was her and not me. I avoided her when she was angry.

Something I wondered is if you have to live with your mother. I don't know what the financial situation is and how much she needs you to be there. If it becomes unbearable, it may be better to live close by, but not with your mother. Something I suspected with my mother is that she really didn't want me here, but she needed me here. I mean, who really wants their grown daughter to move back in? I could sympathize with that, since I didn't really want to be here, either. I think the dependency and the resentment of the dependency can be the root of the problem in many instances. I know that my own resentment led me to much anger that I tried to bottle up.

Anyway... I know how you feel. You'll just have to decide if you will be able to stay or not. Being on the receiving end of anger can be emotionally and physically bad for you. I hope the doctor can help or that you'll be able to make other arrangements for yourself (if needed).
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