My mother doesn't want to have light in the house and doesn't want new objects in our home. Anyone have such issues? -

My mother doesn't want to have light in the house and doesn't want new objects in our home. Anyone have such issues?


My mother doesn't want to use lights at home, I think because she thinks someone can see her, so we live in complete darkness. The room is only lit by light from TV or PC.

There is also an issue with certain locations in our apartment, where she can't go. She doesn't want to go near windows, and one of these places is bathroom. She can visit bathroom only once per day, when she wakes up, which is enough to take a shower, but when she needs to use bathroom during the day, she doesn't. She urinates into a bottle in a kitchen and then use sink to get rid of it. It is worse with defecating, rarely she visits bathroom during the day, other times she does it in kitchen, then pack it up in paper and throws in trash. But this is also rare since she can visit bathroom when she wakes up.

The last major issue is with new things in our apartment. Whenever we buy something new, be it for us, or gift for her which she wanted, it can't be in her presence, until she accustomes to it. This is usually never so we end up putting the thing in away or selling it.

Does anyone have such issues? What could it be and how to deal with it?

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Wow, I have to say that this is very atypical since most elders' vision is usually not as good. Talk to her doctor about this. Funny thing is when I had to live with my late mother (who had macular degeneration, aka low vision) and neither of us had gotten any sleep due to her many ER trips, she would fling open the curtains when all I heard was my childhood bed calling my name as I was a zombie with no sleep! Geeky Peezy!
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You may have to exhibit tough love. You cannot allow the urination sink deal. You could get very ill yourself and as a logical point, who would take care of her? You may have to call her doctor and he can send a nurse navigator to visit and see about getting her (and you) the help she needs. Or you can tell your mother that you either take her to a doctor or you part ways and mean it. As for the window paranoia, my mother has had it her whole life. "Someone might jump through the glass in the window and steal her purse." We live a long way from the road. Nobody could possibly see her purse. Yes, she used to take her purse and sleep with it. She wears all her rings, someone might steal them. Lots of drama. We have security cameras. She's not rational. After her recounting that a "man" came in her bedroom and stole from her purse, we got her to a doctor for a "check up", he took it from there. She is on medicine and it has helped tremendously. We hung very nice sea blue colored black out curtains (Walmart) in her room to keep her from possibly still getting agitated because she has dementia. After she started to use her purse to hoard used toilet paper, we eased it away from her and she doesn't even miss it anymore. Read The 36 Hour Day. Its a life saver. Good luck.
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noospheratus, my mother had early (age 67) onset dementia with psychosis due to a sudden death of her last sibling. The psychosis causes the fears and she needs to be seen by a Dr pronto. Believe me, it will help all of you involved.
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The level of dysfunction some people are willing to put up with in their daily lives never ceases to amaze me, and your story has to be one of the worst. I suppose it has gotten that way gradually and you are sort of like the poor frog in the pot of water on the stove? You mention an apartment, and you mention "Whenever we buy something new", so there must be someone else living with you as I doubt anyone with your mother's level of paranoia is out shopping, please tell me this other person is not a child?
In any event, this is not a normal or health way for any of you to live, your mother needs help. If you feel it would be somehow disloyal to report her (probable) mental illness then consider that she could be better with treatment and it could give her the possibility of a happier and more normal life.
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Do you work? Go to school? Can you support yourself without living with your mother?

How do you like living where urine is dumped in the kitchen sink, where someone poops in the kitchen? Where the light is always dim? These are not normal conditions for a young person to have to cope with. So ... why don't you move out? What is keeping you tied to this dysfunctional situation?

I'm guessing that one big reason is that you love your mother and/or you feel a duty to take care of her, and you are afraid she will be worse off alone. Is that right? That is a perfectly understandable motive. But is it really best for your mother? How would she be worse off if you weren't there? It is very definitely not best for you. You are as worthy as your mother, and your happiness is as valuable as hers.

Maybe part of the reason is that you'd feel terribly guilty for leaving your mother. But the normal order of life is that children grow up and go out on their own. At twenty-five you need to do that. Surely you don't feel comfortable having friends into the apartment you share with Mom? But building friendships and long-term relationships is what you are supposed to be doing at this point in your life. Going out on your own is not something to feel guilty about!

Your mother has mental health issues. This is not her fault. I'm not suggesting that you move out to punish her. But it is not your fault, either. She needs appropriate treatment but that isn't happening, because she refuses. If you cannot help her, at least help yourself.
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Sweetheart, if a colleague at work confided in you that his mother was petrified of the bathroom and new objects to the extent that she was peeing in the kitchen and wrapping her bowel movements in paper, what would you think?

Your mother is showing signs of very, very serious psychiatric (and/or possibly neurological, given the balance issues and finding light uncomfortable too) illness. You need to get her help. She's a bit young for dementia but it isn't impossible - and this terrible fear she's experiencing hasn't come from nowhere.

Don't ask her permission, just consult a doctor yourself and take his advice. Tell him exactly what you've told us.

Grit your teeth, because you may need to do things your mother won't like in order to help her. But that's still better than letting her go on like this. Please do it as soon as you can, and please let us know how you're getting on. Good luck.
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She refuses to see any doctor, and she turns away from her problems saying that it's nothing and that she is alright. Because of this, she is not diagnosed and I haven't talk to doctor. There are also other problems like balancing, that she turns away from.

Bedside commode would be a new object so she would not like it. Besides that, we share the same room so there is no more space for new things.

We live together since I was born, that's for 25 years, and this behaviour lasts for about 5 years. She is 65.
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Does your mother have dementia? Has she been diagnosed with other mental health conditions? Is she being followed by a doctor? Have you discussed these issues with the doctor?

Could you get a bedside commode and put it in her bedroom? It would be better to empty that than her current practices.

How long have you been living together? How long have these behaviors been going on?

Sorry for all the questions, but a better picture would help us give better answers.
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