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I am 60 yrs old, single and no children, my three siblings are all dead (life style choices unfortunately) I live with my aging mother. I am a recovering alcoholic and have been sober for almost 10 years although I no longer attend meetings. My moms health was really good until about 2 years ago, when she met a man, (my father not in picture for many years) this man was a real piece of work. Turns out nothing but lies and a real cheat ; married and living 1/2 a mile away he convinced my mother of all kinds of wonderful things, all lies. This rollercoaster ride has deteriorated her mental and physical health and she is showing signs of dementia for the first time. she sleeps all day and just doesn't care about anything. I want to sue him for taking her away from me. She says she just wants to die. She wont see a doctor and does not have a physician although she does get antidepressants from a Dr that took over the practice of her last Dr. I don't know what to do she has episodes of anger and blames everything that's wrong on me. We are both very isolated and I am getting frustrated with this situation. until about a year ago she could do everything for herself but now she has memory loss, she can't figure out the TV remote, she can't cook or herself she doesn't want to take showers (she feels violated) this last trauma I think is causing a double depression and she just won't cooperate with me and see a physician, psychologist, or a counselor, she hasn't really any friends and doesn't seem to want any.

Hello, it’sonlyme,

I am sorry that this happened to your mother. She does sound very depressed. I would look up the local Area Agency on Aging to get some advice and support on how to get your mother to a geriatric psychiatrist. Plug yourself into their system. They can connect you with services that you may not be aware of. I remember one thing that they do is send out a representative once a month to check on everything. It was remarkable that the lady they sent was an 80 year old volunteer. She always brought big piles of fruit as a gift and stayed and visited with my parents for about half an hour. This is one way that you both can get some social interaction and assistance.

Two things jumped out at me from your post: 1) your isolation, and 2) that you have been sober for 10 years but no longer attend meetings. The latter you could have omitted from your post. That you included it reveals the honesty necessary to stay sober and the admission that you already know that you need to go back to meetings. Why did you stop going? Did your mother’s needs serve as an excuse for not going? Was it hard to get to a meeting? Please reach out to AA again. Call the hotline, call someone that you once knew in AA. Go to an online AA forum if you can’t get to a meeting. There may be some local groups who can bring a meeting to you. Isolation is like poison to an alcoholic.

I am happy that you reached out here. There are some wise people on this forum who can give you suggestions about how to help your mother, but without a healthy sobriety you may not be able to implement them. Please take care of you by reconnecting with AA. If the first attempt doesn’t succeed, try again. You are doing this for yourself, as well as your mother. You are still young, and have many years ahead of you. You deserve a healthy, happy sobriety. Just now, I closed my eyes to pray for you and wasn’t sure where to start, then Hope popped into my head. I pray that you find Hope.
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Reply to Treeartist
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Hi it’s only me, I’m sorry you and your Mom are hurting. I remember years ago when my Mom was so depressed she wouldn’t get out of bed. I made an appt with the dr for her and she begged me to leave her in bed. That day I agreed to that but told her that I loved her too much to leave her in bed the next day. That next day wasn’t any easier but we did get to the Dr who evaluated and treated her depression. When people are severely depressed they often can’t see there way out. I’m thinking your mom needs an assist to the Dr for maybe a med adjustment. Under false pretenses if needed. I’m all for those white lies when necessary. You are not alone. Lots of us here feelings overwhelmed too. Congrats to you and sobriety. You deserve a huge shout out for that and a huge hug. Continue to take care of yourself. Get to those meetings. We are no good to our moms if we aren’t good to ourselves first. You’re a great daughter for posting here. Some of your moms issues might be due to dehydration and maybe uti in addition to depression. All play large roles in brain function. I hope this helps. Take care.
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If my has dehydrated once she will again. If this happens, talk to the attending doctor. Tell him what you have seen and ask if a work up could be done. Blood work, urine sample etc.

Because Mom isn't caring for herself it could be something more than Dementia. Dehydration causes Dementia like symptoms as does low potassium, it will also cause depression. Low blood sugar.

This doctor giving her depressants without a follow up is a no no. In my state you must see a doctor every six months before prescriptions can be renewed. Especially DEA controlled substances.
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You are very welcome and I hope I did help. Unfortunately, when Mom went to the ER, this was most likely a missed opportunity. While there, you should have asked to speak with someone from the hospital’s Social Services Department and explained to them your predicament with Mom. At the very least, they could have suggested someone to call for help with her. Sometimes our loved ones will listen to a stranger before they listen to us. Go figure.

Have you considered a home health nurse? Someone who is trained and experienced and could possibly roust Mom out of bed and make sure she eats and gets her fluid intake. I also work 5 hours a day and I am very tired when I get home. I take care of bedridden hubby and there are days I dread walking into my house. I understand.

A change must start with you. As I said, look out for yourself. I’m not certain you can turn around Mom’s behavior, but learning how to deal with it by getting yourself help may be the way to go.
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Maybe you could try a little fib to get her to the Doctor? “The doctor said due to new laws he can’t refill your prescription without an office exam.” That may motivate her, and you will be able to share your concerns with the doctor. Even slip a note to him in advance if you think you couldn’t speak freely in front of her.
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I am always shocked and dismayed when I read that there are doctors out there who just write prescriptions without doing any exams or follow up. I often wonder if this wouldn’t be grounds for malpractice.

Honestly, even if she did go to a doctor, the chances of her cooperating with prescribed treatment are slim. Being led down the garden path by this slime has left her severely depressed, bordering on mental illness. You know badgering her about seeing a doctor will not work. She needs to see a professional counselor for her depression. She needs a complete physical for her health issues. She refuses all this and nothing you can say will convince her. You may benefit from counseling as well.

Take steps to make yourself less isolated. You are at the
point that you need to take care of #1–yourself. Mom does not have you locked in a room and chained to the bed. Volunteer, go back to your meetings...you may just connect with someone who can help you and if nothing else, you will be able to share things with non-judgmental people. Make the effort. When you are not there 24/7 to be an audience to Mom’s misery, she may just decide to get out of bed and follow suit.

If you feel Mom is showing signs of dementia, start thinking now about where she will go when she needs more care than you are able to provide. Caring alone for a person with dementia, especially one who refuses any type of medical care is a monumental task.
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itsonlyme Mar 22, 2019
Thank you for reminding me of all the correct things I should be doing. I do work during the day, only 5 hours, but often lately I get home and I can tell she has just gotten up because I am expected home. She hasn't eaten or drank anything all day, it wasn't so long ago I had to take her to emergency for Dehydration. I keep forgetting that I am not alone. Thank you for your reply!
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