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My mom is 67 years old and has been having some memory loss for awhile now (i.e. forgetting children's birthdays, recipes). Over the last year she has been progressively more paranoid. She thinks my dad has been rearranging her stuff and hiding stuff from her. I didn't think much of it since I thought normal aging would cause lack of remembering birth dates and she has always been a bit paranoid about people touching her stuff. Since I was a child, she has always kept her pocketbook right next to her even going as far as sitting on it. In the past month, everything has gotten way worse. She started thinking that her next door neighbors are fighting at night and that the husband is abusing the wife. She tells these elaborate tales of him making his wife dig medication out of the ground and the girl running down the street screaming. I know none of this is true because I live across the street from my mom. That has progressed within a month to her believing the man is saying her name and is going to burn down her house. In the past 2 weeks, she has started having more hallucinations. She calls me every night around 10pm saying that people are outside. The other night she thought someone was trying to steal their truck. Last night, she thought my brothers ex-wife was outside saying that my nephew had died. She even asked me if he was dead today. My brother called saying she was talking to a woman through the vent today as well. When I asked her about it, she said it was the woman next door. I asked her what she said. She told me that she said she was from my mom's childhood neighborhood and that she has a child by my dad. I have tried to convince her to go to the doctor, but she says she doesn't have the money. I have offered to pay for the visit, but she makes other excuses. I have begged her to let me go to the doctor with her when she has her regular checkups, but she won't. My father will not listen to reasoning and help me out. He just says she's a liar or says he will tell the doctor, but never does. My brothers have issues with drug abuse and are in and out of jail, so there is no real help there. The only reason my brother told me about the vent talking today was because he was afraid my dad was going to throw him out and he needed a place to stay. So, here I am, asking for help. I don't know what to do. Today she barely even seemed to know she was talking to me and only wanted to talk about the woman in the vent. She has had issues with pain pill addictions in the past, but has never had issues like these arise with them. She recently had an issue with really low potassium and had to take pills for it. Maybe she is having that issue again? Maybe it is dementia? Lord, I hope not. I love her so much and don't want her to go through anymore pain in her life than she already has. How do I help her if she won't let me go to the doctor with her? Could this be something besides dementia? Thank you for taking the time to read this. Any help would be appreciated.

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I'm so used to thinking negatively, that I didn't even think about that positive Sendme2help. Thank you for showing me the positive. *smile* Mulata88...I must admit that I never went to my PCP. My blood pressure has dropped to the 130-150 on top and 80-90ish on the bottom. I probably should still see the doctor about it though. Thank you for your concern and caring. HUGS I told my husband that you guys are like family to me even though we don't personally know each other. You have helped me through the hardest time in my life so far and you all have been so kind and caring. Thank you sooo much.
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I do appreciate the update, take good care of yourself. Did you get to see your Pcp, re... your blood pressure? Important! What happened?

M88
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Mom walking across the street to check in and get her meds sounds like a perfect plan! Proof she is doing better.
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I am soooo, sooo sorry that I have not responded to everyone's thoughtful suggestions and responses. My mom was released on June 10 and it has been a crazy ride since then. She was suddenly released. The only thing they did was give me a set of papers which states that her diagnosis was psychosis with no known cause. They had set up an appointment with her physician the Wed (June 15) after her release. The physician and I agreed at the appointment that something more seems to be going on (possible stroke). She is no longer hallucinating, and according to the staff at the facility, has not hallucinated since that first night. But, there is a huge difference in her short term memory since last month and it seems to be getting worse. Her PCP sent her for a CT scan last Monday (June 20). They called Wed (June 22) stating that they found that her myelin sheath has been damaged. The nurse said that she was not getting enough oxygen to her brain. She said that there was a possibility of vascular disease or multiple sclerosis. She said a neurologist could tell us more. She sent the referral out last Wed. (June 22) to the neurologist. The neurologist had not contacted us by Monday. So, I contacted her PCP who said we just have to wait for the neurologist to call us to set up the appointment. The neurologist still has not called. In addition to all of that, my dad has been causing problems. He does not want me to administer my mom's medicine, even though he is incapable of doing it. (She went back to live with him. They released her completely and said she was free to do what she wanted and she wanted to live in her own home.) He says she is a grown woman and should be able to take her own medication. It's as if he doesn't realize or doesn't care how much her memory is affected. She calls me at least 3 to 5 times a day to ask if she has taken her medicine or when she needs to take it. She has been letting me give her medications to her. But, she has to walk across the street to my house to get them at 6am and then 6pm because my dad will not allow me back in the house or yard. It is pure hell (excuse my language) sometimes. I am trying to do the best that I can for my mom. My dad is playing interference. My mom is most likely facing a long road of deteriorating health. I am already getting pretty depressed from all of the stress and the "what ifs" about the future. All of that to say, that is why I have not been on here. I am very sorry that I have not responded recently. Thank you all so much for checking in and offering your suggestions. You are so much help and you are a comfort in these dark times. Hugs and love to all of you. I will try to get back again before weeks and check in. I hope all of you are doing well.
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Perturbed, You stated that your Mom, knowing she needed help, called the ambulance herself.
This fact may be vital to her attorney who will work for her voluntary placement or release. What is important is the difference between voluntary and involuntary.

Even when involuntarily committed, her advocates (you, an attorney, patient's rights advocate) the goal should be change her status to voluntary. That determination opens a whole lot of choices for care, including transfer to the private facilty nearer you.
Keep trying.
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NAMI click on GETTING SUPPORT
Click on Families and Caregivers
Click on If your family member is arrested.
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Agree with getting the Hippa form signed, bring a Notary? Due to her possible incompetent to be signing (for now), that is why seeing the Patient's Rights Advocate (the hospital must provide the contact info by law) would be helpful.

Be sure to explain she is at a disadvantage because of her education and communication issues. If she speaks english as a second language, the hospital is required to provide an interpreter in her native tongue-or try the Dept. of Social Services.
Don't panic, because under the right treatment, and the passage of time (48 hrs., 7 days, 14 days, 21 days) Mom will be getting much improved and better able to pass the tests and interviews necessary for helpful placement.

How are you holding up? Don't feel bad if you cannot visit daily-patients can actually improve better in the absence of family. Ask the staff about this.
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How are you doing today?

M88
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Has your mother signed a HIPAA release which allows the doctors to talk to you? If not, download one, print it out and have mom sign on your next visit.

If mom is psychotic, her perceptions of what is happening may not be accuate re: the judge, actions of others.

It is really important for the evaluating doctors to know that your mom only has a 3rd grade education and appears to have had liifelong cognitive challenges. Meaning that she probably would have had difficulty counting back by 7's from 100 before this recent episode. Even with the hipaa release, you can GIVE the docs and social workers information. Good luck.
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Hi Pert!
Instead of phone calls, write them.

Send registered letters to all the people who are involved.

Social worker

Advocate

Doctor(s)

Chief Nurse over the ward.

Get names, last names, addresses, and communicate in writing, registered letters, with recipient SIGNATURE REQUIRED.

Post Office will return those signed cards, and that's evidence of what you're trying to accomplish.

Phone calls....... sadly, "words that are gone with the wind".

They have to know that you mean business and if there's a judge, write him too. It can be the same letter, just print out as many copies as you need.

Ask if there is an OMBUDSPERSON=a neutral party that assists both sides, to obtain a goal.

I would do that, if I were you.

Did you get into the doctor? What happened?

Hugs, x o x o,

M 8 8
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If a judge is involved, and there is no attorney, contact the patient's rights advocate.
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I will certainly ask those questions Sunnygirl, if/when the doctor calls me. Those are great questions. If any of you guys know more questions that I should ask when they let me talk to the doctor, please let me know. I can't think straight right now. I am taking notes on all of your suggestions though. Thank you so much.
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I might also, ask them about why your mom has sustained this damage to her brain. Has she had untreated hypertension or diabetes? Have they done an MRI? I'd be curious as to what they think happened, so you can know what to expect. That kind of damage is challenging for family members. I hope you reach out and get the support you will need.
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I have tried over and over to get the doctor and/or social worker to contact me. I briefly spoke with the social worker Monday morning and he said he would call me back when the doctor evaluated my mom later that day. He still has not called me. I have requested that the doctor call me. The doctor has not called me. I have left voicemails, spoken with nurses, etc. stating that I would like to sit down with someone and discuss all of this. They give me bits and pieces here and there. They told me her diagnosis and said she had to be admitted 7-21 days. I asked if she would get out in 21 days and they said no, not necessarily. That is up to the doctor. I have told them that I am more than willing to be her guardian. She can live with me if/when she is released. I have asked to have her transferred closer to home. I found a facility that is 15 minutes from my home. I told my mom about it and she got really excited saying she would feel better there. I contacted the facility and they told me they have 7 beds in their Geriatric Unit and would love to have her there, but that the current facility has to contact them. I asked the social worker about it, during our only conversation, who said I will talk to the doctor and call you back. I asked a nurse who said there was just too much involved with a transfer and that the doctor at the other facility may not accept her as a patient. I asked could they at least try and she sighed and did not respond. I know my mom has talked to a judge because she said there was a man on a tv who told her he was a judge. She can't remember anything that was said though. The nurse today told me her anxiety levels have to come down. I am so frustrated because I can't have a single discussion where someone can give me some idea of this process. I read that if she has an attorney, they are supposed to contact interested parties such as myself since I have power of attorney. But, no one has contacted me. I am almost sure they won't release her to my dad, but my home is stable. My husband and I have no children and a three bedroom home. I believe that someone asked about my major in college. I have a BA in Elementary Education. Thank you all again for your support, suggestions, etc. I will contact my doctor about getting my blood pressure down and possibly taking something to relieve my anxiety. Thank you again and much hugs and love to all of you.
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To find a NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) in or near your area go to NAMI dot org. Type the name of your state in the search box. You should see a list of links with your state NAMI web site listed at the top. Click on that site. Click on Support and Education. Hover over families and you will see two options. Click on Support groups. There should be one more click to get you to the list of support groups per county with contact information.

NAMI also offers a free Family to Family course for family members of someone with a mental illness. Psychosis is a mental illness.

I hope this helps.

Do see your doctor and find a therapist or a pastor that you can talk with and detox from the intensity of this crisis with.
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National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, (and their families.)
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Could not help noticing your statement: "I think, with the pressure, I may be up there with her soon." Get psychiatric help for yourself too. Contact the local NAMI for support classes: A) for you, and B) that will assist you in knowing how to navigate the situation your Mom is in.
You can do this. What was your field of study in college?
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Pert, (a new, happy nickname just for you!),
From what you have described about your mother's personality, she may do better if released into a more private care psych hospital, instead of what she feels is a prison environment. There are different levels of care, if she is in a locked unit at a county facility, or actually arrested, in jail, that would make a difference.
Start looking for rehab (even drug rehab) places that she can be admitted to until she is better. Her condition will require follow-up treatment for quite some time-returning her to the same environment would be harmful to her health. Start talking to her, about when she gets better, giving her hope. Coaching her a bit on who actually is the president of the U.S., what day is this, do you know where you are? etc. are the questions of a mental status exam. No one should be in a locked ward longer than necessary due to their education status.
I had the keys to the locked ward/ icu of a teaching hospital, and was amazed at how fast the doctors discharge a very ill patient, a.s.a.p.
So be encouraged in every way. Do not worry about helping others, be able to receive, because so many on this forum do care.
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It's good to know that she is somewhere that she can receive care. Have they discussed her continued care after she is released and to whom will make that decision? Have they prepared you for what to expect of her condition?

It sounds like your dad is quite excitable. Do they recommend if she would be able to live in a home setting?

I wouldn't worry with helping others right now. It sounds like you have a lot on your plate.
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Please call your doctor, or go to the walk-in clinic ASAP.

If you get ill, you're not going to be able to care for anyone. Your blood pressure needs serious attention.

Someone suggested a mild anti-anxiety med (short term), to help you cope.

Your doctor can help you, and this way you're able to help mom and dad.

Sometimes, when someone is admitted, they'll want to limit family visiting. This is because they are trying their best to stabilize the patient, and visiting relatives can be very upset, therefore upsetting the patient.

CALL the facility, and ask what is their policy, specifically dealing with mom.

ASK if it's a good idea to go see her at this point or just talking to her on the phone would be preferable. ..... at this point.

Meanwhile YOU take care of YOU.

Tell us what happened at your appointment, and what did the facility advises as well.

We are here for you, and no, you don't owe anything to anyone.

Pray for a calm heart and a clear mind.

Hugs x o x o

M88
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perturbed,

We are glad to be able to help and that you came here to ask for help. Keep in touch and let us know how things are going.
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Thank you for all of your thoughtful responses, thoughts, and prayers. I asked the nurse at the ER why they were releasing my dad and not my mom. Her answer, seriously, was he answered the questions correctly. I have no idea what that even means. I am not familiar with this stuff at all. In addition, the EMTs did not press charges against my dad. I have read everything I can about involuntary commitment and all it does is depress me. I spoke with a nurse today and she said my mom's anxiety levels needed to come down, but they weren't. Yet, they will not give her a nicotine patch and she has dipped snuff since she was a teenager. She is going to be anxious if she is having withdrawals. Also, my entire life my mom has been a talker. She talks nonstop. My aunt (her sister) is just like her. You can't get a word in when you are talking to them. I am afraid they are mistaking her personality for extra anxiety. Also, the ward she is in has some people that make me nervous. There is one man who attacked someone in a wheelchair. There is a woman who screams constantly. There is a man who runs around at full speed and another one who says "meep", "meep" all of the time. I am not saying bad things about these people. I know that they have medical issues. I also know that it will make someone like my mom nervous. She has always needed her family around. As for moving across the street from her (I believe that was asked), she has been taking care of my dad for years since he was diagnosed with the AVM. He has episodes where he doesn't know where he is, anger issues, etc. We moved here so that we could help her out if she needed help. She does a great job when she is surrounded by her family. But, she gets separation anxiety when she does not have them around. She only has about a third grade education. I tutored her quite a bit during my youth to help her gain more skills. But, her skills still fall short. For example, she is about 100 miles away from home right now. To her, that seems like from the east to the west coast. SHe does not get distances. Once, we were talking about someone local winning a lottery. I said I wish I had $1 million. She said, yea, if we had that we could buy a new car. Then, she said, nah...we wouldn't have enough money would we? So, she doesn't get monetary values unless they are small. She knows, for example, that if she gets $55 of groceries, she needs to give $60 to the cashier. She can write checks for their bills, etc. But, she just doesn't get large sums. She doesn't get questions about politics. Not to bring that up, but she thinks one of the current candidates for the general election is already president. She doesn't realise that the new president will be elected in November. She thinks that because someone is on tv alot and they talk about them, they are the new president. So, she has some skills, but not others. She has done great at life though. She raised me beautifully. I am a college graduate. She taught me to value my education. She read to me as a child, even though she had to get me to help her with some words. She is a beautiful loving person. She had a hard life growing up and it scarred her quite a bit. My brothers and nephews have also given her a lot of heartache. One of them just got put back in jail the day she was admitted to the facility. I think, with the pressure, I am going to be up there with her soon. As for my dad, he is doing okay right now. We both go to visit her, but he gets easily agitated and angry and starts cussing. I try to keep him calm as best I can and have told him it does not help her at all if he behaves in that manner. I go with him because he will go without me if I don't. I go so that I can reign him in. I don't know if I have responded to everything. If I did not, I am sorry. I do want to thank everyone for listening and being so supportive and offering suggestions. I feel bad that you guys are helping me so much and I have not done anything for you. Thank you so much.
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From what I looked up a Neurocognitive Disorder is dementia. Psychosis means that she has lost touch with reality which from your earlier description sounds like a valid diagnosis. Both of these are serious.

There should be a social worker where your mother is who can talk with you as your mother's POA to better understand what is going on and what her possible needs upon discharge will be. It is going to take some time as they see how she responds to their treatments.

Like sendme, I wonder why did they release your dad the next day? How is your dad doing?
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Perturbed you asked for prayers and I will send some your way. God is able in all situations. Just relax. All will work out.
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Why did they release Dad the next day? After attacking the ambulance rescue?
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It sounds like a very stressful situation. It does appear that your mother is in the right place. I'm not sure how coming home would help her. Being at home is probably the worse thing for her, since she's ill and needs medical intervention. Hopefully, they can determine what she needs and develop a treatment and care plan.

You said that they have diagnosed her with Neurocognitive Disorder and Psychosis. Did they explain what that means? I would research it and seek advice from a health care professional about it. Based on this, it may be that your mom is going to need continuous care now. Would your dad be able to do this? Would you? I would research what this kind of care entails, before taking on that responsibility.

Since you were not able to get much information about your mother, I might check the court records in the county where she lives or in the county where she was admitted. If the county or state has appointed a temporary Guardian, they often have a file opened with the court. (The Estate or Guardianship division.) At least you might find out if there is a Guardian for her.

I would keep in mind that the things she may be saying are not necessarily true. She may be having delusions. She also isn't likely to know what is best for her right now.

I hope things get better for you and that your mother gets the help she needs. Please let us know how you are doing.
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perturbed,

First of all this is not your fault. You have been trying to get your mother to see a doctor and she has refused.

Secondly, it is always overwhelming to experience a family member suddenly need intense psychiatric care like your mother is getting, I know for my wife has had these experiences and I still remember the first time.

Thirdly, you are not equipped to help her at home with these medical problems and your level of stress would only stress her out more. Just bringing her straight home is not going to fix anything. She's where she needs to be.

Fourthly, no one has probably said this, but what they told me when my wife went in was to take care of myself while they took care of my wife. It sounds like you need to contact your own doctor about your very high blood pressure or maybe even find a therapist to talk about your level of stress with. It does help.

Basically, you did not cause this to happen to your mom, you can't fix it and you can't control it. All you can do is control how you respond to it with some help.

How is your dad dealing with all of this?
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perturbed - after reading you last post, it's obvious you are heartbroken and overwrought - and understandably so. I went back a reread you original post and the others following. In reading the original post it struck me how frightened your mother must have been on a daily basis- for the last month and maybe longer. "Tortured" actually came to mind based on the things you said she was seeing and saying. I agree - it's pretty awful the way this all played out - but please try to take a small measure of comfort in knowing your mother will be getting the help she needs to get better. Of course she is frightened now but it will get better. If your mom was taking too much or the wrong meds - they will get it straightened out. Visit your mom as often as you can, explain that she is sick "right now" but that the doctors are working to make her well. However - you have to get ahold of yourself - I imagine this situation would become a lot worse if you had a stroke and wound up in the hospital. Go see your PCP and ask for a small prescription of anti anxiety medication to help see you through this.
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Miss Perturbed,

Deep breath and count this hospitalization as a blessing.

Mom is at the RIGHT place, at the RIGHT time.

You begged for help, and it came!

She's in good hands, probably going through withdrawal symptoms, for which you couldn't help her.

Your love for mom blinds your logic.

Let her know that you love her and that for NOW, that is the best way to help her.

And you're not lying.

No guilt.

She WILL SURVIVE, and come home a new woman.

Stay calm. Decompress. Resist the urge to be in control of the situation. You're not.

Let this happen, and run its course.

M 8 8
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Hello Everyone! Sorry I have not responded to your posts. I feel like my life ended Thursday morning. My mom finally called an ambulance knowing she needed help. When the ambulance arrived, my dad attacked the drivers (he has an AVM of the brain and sometimes has seizures that cause him to be aggressive). As a result, both my mom and dad were admitted to the psychiatric unit. My dad was the released the next day and my mom was involuntarily committed to a facility over 100 miles from our home. Long story short, they say that she will be there at least another 7-21 days. I am going crazy. I love my mom more than myself. They told me nothing. I did not even know they were moving her there. I tried contacting person after person, but no one would tell me anything. My mom finally called me and said "They are taking me to jail." She only has a third grade education and did not understand what was going on. I feel like this is all my fault. I just want her home right now. But no one will tell me anything. I have called the social worker over and over and left messages. I've left messages for the doctor. I am allowed to visit her and she is now very depressed and crying to come home. I cannot just leave her there. It is like prison there. She is only going to get worse. She is doing better now. No hallucinations. Her potassium was 2.9 when they checked it and a nurse would only tell me that they have diagnosed her with neurocognitive disorder and psychosis. I feel like I am dying inside. I just want her home and don't know how to go about doing it. I have read they can keep her indefinitely. Is that true? I am so scared. My blood pressure has not dropped below 190/110 since Thursday even though I am taking my meds for it. I have power of attorney, but that does not seem to matter. I contacted an attorney and they said they could not help, I contacted the disability advocates office and they said there is nothing I can do. They won't even talk to us about moving her closer to home. She does not do well in stressful situations and gets easily confused. She was crying to me saying she does not know how to answer their questions and she just wants to die if they are going to make her stay there forever. She has NEVER said that. She has always been full of life and loved it. She has been my rock. She just started having these bad troubles in the last month. I am so scared. I just want my mom to come home. I know that sounds like something a child would say. Please forgive the incoherence. I am just in a bad place right now. Thank you all for listening and if you pray, please send one up for us.
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