Mother is 67 and constantly urinates on herself. She is also a heavy drinker. What can we do? -

Mother is 67 and constantly urinates on herself. She is also a heavy drinker. What can we do?


What steps we need to take to get her the help she needs? Recently she fell and did not remember how she fell. Clothes smelled of urine and alcohol.



Dear Jirvin,
I wish there WAS something you could do. If your mom has been deemed competent, then she can do anything she wishes. You can not force someone into rehab, as far as I know. If she is not a danger to herself or others then she is free to live her life as she wants to.

There is not a chance detox will work if she doesn't WANT to quit drinking. Alcoholics will justify ANY bad behavior or actions so they can keep drinking. It's a heartbreaking road to watch a loved one go down with alcohol ruining their life. Both my folks were alcoholics. I remember cleaning up vomit as a kid and nothing was said. They just won't admit that alcohol is the demon. They'll defend it to the end.

Try Adult Protective Services to check in on her. They may recommend treatment for her but it's still up to her.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to SueC1957

If you can afford it, professional inpatient rehab. But if you're like my family with no money, you'll have to call adult protective services. Detox centers never worked for my mom. To be honest, I think once they are that old, alcoholics will continue to drink. My mom and dad still do, and I've tried everything. Having home health (for other unrelated aging issues) has helped curb the drinking for most of the day, so I guess their time is limited for drinking now. But if shes not willing to go to rehab, there's little you can do. Let her reach rock bottom once, maybe multiple times. Eventually she might see the light.
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Reply to aj6044

Why not try her county's Adult Protective Services? It can't hurt to try. At least you won't be doing nothing at all.

This has to be dreadful for you being so far away. Don't give up just yet. Try them and let us know, please.
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Reply to Pepsee

If she is peeing in a bucket in a normally well outfitted home..she need a psych eval. And they may be able to get her admitted for some help.. or not. It's crazy these days what is deemed safe and sane.. And no one else should ask her to house sit or watch their children!
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Reply to pamzimmrrt

Thank you all for your advice. I am living in Al and my mom in NorthCarolina. The doctors says there’s nothing they can do, because she is in her right mind says them. I can’t talk to her about what’s going on with her because she gets defensive. My mom is severely under weight, dehydration issues and she drinks all day. She recently house sat for my sister and when my sister returned, my sister son told her that my mom was peeing in a bucket, not bathing and the crazy part is that my mom does not see anything wrong with it. Who would I refer her too if I am living in another state?
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Reply to jirvin


Your experience with alcohol (Before, during & after) is priceless! Something else you try to warn about here also came to pass right before my eyes, and left me speechless! 😨 Thank you.
I hope jirving takes your full advice.
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Reply to Pepsee

My father is actually an alcoholic. He's urinated on himself multiple times, including in front of me. He's also fallen multiple times and has even split his head open on occasion. He's in jail as we speak because of it and this isn't the first time. He has been to AA meetings and they have helped, but he stopped going to them and reverted back to his old ways.

I agree with shakingdustoff that your mother, as well as my own father, needs professional rehab. It may not be easy to get her into such a thing depending on financial, insurance, and legal issues, but it is what you should strive for. We have had trouble getting my own father into such a thing but I have already discussed with other family members and we all agree that we should keep trying to get him in some sort of program no matter what it takes.

I am referring to my own father so hopefully you will understand how serious of an issue this can be and it often only gets worse. I never knew my dad would stoop down to the level he has already. I wish it were simple to get him the help he needs but it often isn't. But I'm not giving up on him and you shouldn't give up on your own mother. Just don't try to do it yourself. Seek professional help or matters will only get worse. I'm sorry you are going through this. I know it isn't easy. Best of luck.
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to Caregiverology

this sounds very scary. does she live alone?
i agree, sounds like she may need rehab.
ive never dealt with that before. but maybe she needs to see her physician and maybe they can refer her to get professional help. maybe contact alcoholics anonymous, if you think shes abusing alcohol.
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Reply to wally003

Does she drink a lot or was it more an one off thing? If she does drink until she falls
and passes out, then rehab. Otherwise get her evaluated, there's a number of different
things that can cause the incontinence. (UTI, excessive coffee, severe constipation, etc)

Good luck!
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to bettina

Is she passed out when this happens. You could consider a urologist. I am in the midst of testing for my mother with this. She was prescribed Botox which helps with frequency but if she is a heavy drinker that is the first problem. Hope you can deal with that. That is a very dark road ahead and all sorts of other problems will develop.
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Reply to Riverdale