How do I acquire help for my mother who is facing severe depression and talks of giving up?

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My mother lives in Northampton, at Hampton house. Since losing her 3rd husband in December 2015 she has become more and more depressed. Moving back into Hampton House, she complains continuely they are charging her too much and she has no money to live, so she may as well just end it. I received a message this morning that she is more and more seriously considering it. She has become involved on a couple occasions with "scammers" and they have taken quite a bit of money from her, while she completely believed they cared for her. She should not be driving, but refuses to give it up. (she has cysts behind her left eye and is leading to glaucoma. She often mentions seeing spots in that eye. She does have aides that come into help her and a physio therapist, however, she lies to them all.


The will not tell them how she feels, that she is having trouble walking, breathing, and very depressed. She will be honest with me, sending me messages about she feels. She complains of money issues, however, I know what she receives and it just doesn't add up. Much of her money goes to these men she is meeting on line and asking for money. It is done out of loneliness and as she is realizing what is happening, she becomes more and more depressed. She is threatening suicide now and has given up.


I do not live near by, at the moment I am in Australia, but do have power of attorney. I am not sure what to do to help as I know she will lie to anyone who confronts her. As I mentioned I do have some of her messages sent as proof.


What are my options? I know she needs to have her license revoked and at this point believe needs to be placed in a nursing home with continuous care and for someone to control her SSI and Pension, as she is not capable at this time.

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It sounds to me as though your mother is trying to manipulate you from afar. Like, into coming home.

She's having trouble breathing? And a PT person isn't noticing? Hardly likely, in my mind.

I would alert her doctor to the concerns she has expressed to you about her physical and emotional state. If she has a lawyer or financial advisor, I'd do the same about her financial dealings.

She would have to need round the clock medical supervision to be medically at need for a nursing home.
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At the risk of stating the obvious, you're in Australia. How long for? Because I don't see how you can get anything done from that distance. You're not there to talk to the aides on a daily basis, you can't see what she's doing on her computer, it must be difficult even to have a conversation during office hours with social workers or your mother's doctor - it's just so impractical.

If your mother had a real, worked-out plan to take her own life I doubt she would have told you about it. She is reaching out to you for help, seems more likely. What does she say when you ask her what you can do for her?

The reason I asked who commissioned the aides and nurses is that these people do have access to your mother's daily life, and that's where there is the most effective leverage. Was it you or your mother who contracted them?
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Hampton house does not have an agent, it is basically run like an apartment complex. Whatever helps is given is coordinated by the individual or family.

I've tried talking to the Department of Aging, they simply said what she has done does not constitute a problem, merely that she has made bad decisions. There is nothing they can do.

I have no problem using my POA, why would I? I have it for a reason!!! I know she lies because she has done in front of me many times. I have told nurses and aides, however, they can do nothing unless she tells them the truth. She tells them what they want to hear.

I've been fighting this for awhile, no one can do anything until something goes wrong. I am contacting her doctors again and the aides again and see if someone will finally listen.

I do not know where anyone would get the idea I would not use my POA, I have been told that I can not have her placed simply because is talking of "ending it all." In the counselors opinion I spoke with, talking isn't good enough she needs to be specific.

I HAVE contacted people for help and they simply say, there is nothing they can do. It's her decisions.
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What's the point of having Power of Attorney for your mother if you're not prepared to use it?

Make contact with a named individual at your mother's local social services, then put together a summary of your concerns (in particular the financial vulnerability, mental incapacity and suicide risk) and forward it, with the relevant emails, to that person for action.

H'm. You say your mother lies to the aides and therapists who visit her at home. How do you know that? - from her, or from them? You could do worse than call the aides' line manager and discuss your mother's situation with him/her.

Who arranged these services, by the way?
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Dear Nycoma,

I'm very sorry to hear how depressed and lonely your mom is, it is a serious concern. I know its hard when you are currently in Australia. Is there another family friend or family member who could visit her? Or check on her personally? I would call Adult Protective Services or any local agency that helps with Elder Abuse. I'm scared your mom will give away all her money, money she needs for her own care.
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Ah, I see you don't have POA. Yes, I would contact APS and report the abuse.
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Are you in touch with the folks at the ALF about the financial abuse she's undergone?

Are you, or is anyone, her POA? Does she have a lawyer?
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Does Hampton House have an agent concerned for the abuse of the elders there? Contact them. Contact any government agency there that is involved with things like the council on aging. Tell them what is happening.
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What a very sad situation! I have no advice, but I want to extend my sympathy and good wishes to you. This is a huge challenge.
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