Can anything be done when a person loses the will to live?

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My grandmother has been in a nursing home for 2 years and probably as a result, has lost the will to live. SInce I do not live nearby, I've been told by my mother she is not eating or drinking and sleeps almost all the time and does little if anything since her physical condition is so frail. She is probably only days from death. Her mental faculties are still good and recognized and read some cards I sent to her. I feel so helpless, and feel like we're all just on a deathwatch here. Due to the distance, I'm unable to see her. My mother is doing regular visits to her, but is unable to get her to eat or drink.
How does one deal with a person that's lost the will to live? I dread the coming days, and feel bad for unable to do anything to or for my grandmother. Why would someone lose the will to live when we all want her to stay with us? I have never had a close death in the family and do not know how to deal with this.

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Even if this doesn't change her outlook on life, maybe since you aren't able to visit often, I bet sending her frequent cards from her favorite Granddaughter would cheer her up, and make her feel Extremely Loved! ☺☺☺☺
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Jimmy recovering from surgery can take a long time and depression is not uncommon. Can you tell us more about your mother so we can help more.
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Her *doctors* disagree about the symptoms of Alzheimers, Jimmy? What do they think is going on, then?
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I am experiencing the same situation as oldbeagle. My heart goes out to him. The worry over my Moms loss of the will to live is a heavy burden on the whole family. My heart breaks for Dad and the worry is all consuming. I pray so hard every night that she find some purpose in life. She lays on the couch all day and stares into the sky. She displays symptoms of Alzheimers but the doctors deny this. She has had 2 major surgeries and i blame the total lack of post surgical counselling for the mess she is in.
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Sigh.... I understand her desire to give up. . . I had an aneurism in 1988 and died (out of body experience) I was 30. . . . Since then, I had significant brain damage and had years Rehab.... trying to get back into society. . . . I understand her mentality. . .What she knows is her past and identifies with it (which is PAST). . . Family can certainly help by expressing TRUE LOVE (Not just words, but a concern for her LIFE NOW . . . . Otherwise. . . . Leaving this world isn't the worst option considering the WORLD PEACE EFFORT going on now. . . CHRIST would be crying with our world peace going on today. . .
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This answer comes many years too late, but may help someone else in the future. I hope oldbeagle is doing well. I think that we make the mistake of believing that living is always the best option. For those of us who are young, engaged in life, and healthy, I would hope that is the case. For older, or sicker people dealing with many trials and tribulations, it may not be. Passing on after being convinced that our life had been full, is as much as any of us could ask for. It may be a peaceful and beautiful passage into whatever comes next, whether that is peace or paradise. We really shouldn't impose our wishes on people who, most likely, know a lot batter than we do. I wish you all well on this journey.
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NovaCare, You didn't say how old your husband is NOW. Pls advise. A feeding tube may help. Hydration is vital. Warm feet are vital. I'm not willing to say "let go". Yet.
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Death is not suppose to be a part of our lives. God put within us, the want to live forever. We only want to die, because life becomes so miserable; with one thing after another robbing us of happiness. I believe that letting go of someone who has lost the will the live is the hardest thing to do. We aren't grieving for them, but for us who have them no more. Death is a release from this mess we live in today. God, whose name is Jehovah, didn't intend for this to happen. Adam and Eve were warned of the consequence of disobedience, thus as the Bible says at Romans "death spread to all men because we have all sinned." Because of Jesus Christ our Savior, which Jehovah God so lovingly provided for our being saved from sin, we have a wonderful hope for the future. This will not be under mankind's imperfect, sinful rule, but under Jehovah God's rule. His Kingdom that Jesus taught us to pray for in Matthew chapter 6 is going to very soon rule over righteous mankind and it will do away with all death, old age, sickness, pain all the horrible things we see happen to those we love. Furthermore, the Bible holds God's promise of a resurrection of the dead. Those we love and miss,. we can see them all again on the earth in paradise. These are Jehovah God's sure promises. Sure because Jesus died for this reason. Take heart, and pray to Jehovah God for His Kingdom to come as Jesus said we should. We need that Kingdom so much so that all the suffering in the world will be gone forever. Learn more at JW.org. My mom is in a nursing home and is miserable, and my father is home here with me and my husband, and it's so very sad to watch this, but I know Jehovah God cares so much, and he will end it all very soon. I may lose my parents to old age and death, but I will see them again, very soon.
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NovaCare, I am very sorry you are going through this. Can you provide a little more information? How old is your husband? Has be been in a nursing home before the surgery, and intending to go back? What are his current disabilities -- can he walk, feed himself, dress, etc? Does he have trouble swallowing?

What was his mood before the surgery? What does the tcu staff say about his lack of eating? Have the therapists been informed of his exhaustion after the sessions?

Looking forward to some more background, to be able to comment on this. Meanwhile, hugs to you in this distressing situation.
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I have a similar question. My husband had a surgery to have a part of pancreas and spleen removed. He was in the ICU for a week, then was moved to a regular room for another week, and now he is in a rehab facility (transitional care nursing home). Since the second week in the hospital, he has hardly eaten or drunk anything. Now in the rehab center, it is still the same. Therefore for the last two weeks, he hasn't eaten much of anything, or drunk. All he wants to do is to sleep. I tried to make him eat even a little bit, but I cannot be at his side 24 hours. When he comes back to his room after his physical therapy, he is totally exhausted, and out of breath, and cannot carry conversations. Medically his progress from the surgery is good, but he does not want to eat, he throws up medicines, and he is going through a vicious cycle, he refuses to eat or drink unless I force him to eat and drink something against will. Does it sound like he has lost the will to live.
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