My mother has just transitioned from her home to an assisted living facility. She is on anti-depressant and says she wants to die. She is healthy, but she is giving up. What can we do?

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my mother is just transitioning from her home to an assisted living. she says she wants to die. she said that at home too. her husband died
5 years ago. she's on antidepressant. she won't do anything for herself now,
she is healthy. she's given up. what can we do?

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I hope you do NOT go the way of ECT! I had it many years ago and was told that my lost memories would return soon. (I missed my son's High School Graduation but was present for his party, but have NO MEMORY of it!! Worse yet, my depression andf suicidal tendencies (actually suicide attempts) continued after the ECT. The ECT Made me a zombie! I am well now since I finally have been diagnosed as bipolar and get the right medications. STAY AWAY FROM ETC!!!
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June: your past experiences mirror mine right now. I am trying to keep Mom in her home because she wants it that way and she is definitely happier there. However, I know that it may not be possible in the future. I, too, worry about her wanting to "give up" if she needs to go into a facility. But she is strong, mentally, and I hope she can continue to role with the punches.
Getting old in this country is not a humane endeavor. It should be much easier than this. Other countries treat their elders with much more respect and loving attention...where did we go wrong??
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My father passed away 6 months ago and I had to put my Mom in an assisted living facility also. It has been the hardest thing I have had to do. My mother has suffered with depression for years. I tried to keep her in her home with the help of caregivers 7 days a week, 3 times a day but she was not taking care of herself. When I took her to the hospital they diagnosed her with Self-Neglect. She is able to do things but not willing. I visit mom about every other day, she has been there about 60 days and things are getting better. It was crueler to keep her in her own home than being in a care facility. It has been very emotional to go through alone, without the help of my siblings, having to make all the decisions by myself. They are wanting to do ECT because the meds she has been on have not been helping her depression. That is my next major decision to make. A depressed mother is the cruelest disease to deal with. I hope your mother gets the help she needs, you have to be her advocate. Take care. June
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Do they have activities that she may enjoy is there someone that you could invite over for coffee who might become friends with her or are there activities in the area would she like to volunteer for something so she would feel useful my volunteer groups are so much fun. Maybe she just needs time to adjust esp. if she lived in her home for a long time are there classes she could join is she able to use a computer and might enjoy emailing or joining a support group.
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I think Lilliput has offered some great ideas....and from what I have personally witnessed, when a person leaves their home or apartment for a facility---They seem to have the idea- of that is where they will pass away, and thus they become negative about things. AL offers many opportunities to become engaged in-perhaps the social worker can make some recommendations. Keep focusing on the positive, and hopefully for you as well as your Mom-things will greatly improve in time.
Hang in there~
Hap
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I would wonder who prescribed the anti-depressants for her? A PCP? If so, I would look to get further MH screening to check her depression/anxiety and or S/I. A referral to a psychiatrist may be what is in order. I agree that socialization is just as paramount, but need to take the "i want to die" seriously and not just chalk it up to she's "blue"... get her some professional help. Contact your local Office of Aging or a elder care management service to see if programs could be offered in her home. best of luck
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So sorry that your Mom is feeling blue...it is understandable. She is losing her independence and I know that it is hard for her. You say she is healthy...can she live in senior apartments as opposed to assisted living? Perhaps it is the thought of a "facility" that has her depressed.
As far as helping her through this...I would have to say that time, and your loving attention is the best. She is grieving many things and you can't "make it better." Try listening for a few minutes then "redirecting" to something more positive. Try to find anything (even small things) that she enjoys doing or talking about.
Also, she needs to get outside of her home environment, even if it is a short drive. My Mom feels and looks so much better after an outing (it is just hard to convince her to go!)
good luck
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