My Mom, I believe, is a long time sufferer of depression. I know this because I suffer from it and have treated myself with meds for about 15 years. Mom seems to always be on a rollercoaster of emotions and when she is in a bad spot it effects the whole household. BTW, our household consists of me and my husband and my Mom and Stepdad, both in their 70s. Both are in decent health thankfully. Last weekend was rough but this week she seems to be on a high. I'm trying to not let my emotions go crazy but it has been difficult and I could use some suggestions on how to cope. But mainly I would love some suggestions on how to suggest to my Mom that maybe she needs to talk to someone and get some help. She gets very defensive any time you suggest that she is wrong about something or that she may be the cause of an argument or disagreement. She acts very childish and she always has. I'm trying very hard to be a good daughter but we have never been on the same wavelength about anything and I find myself always adjusting to make her happy and it just doesn't work. Now I find myself falling into the dumps and I have worked hard to keep myself level so this is hard for me. I'm not worried about me though, I'm concerned that my Mom could use some help getting off the roller coaster. How do I get her to want help?

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Dear Musil,

I'm so sorry to hear what you are going through. I know you love your mom and want her to get the help she needs. Its very hard. I can identify with what you are writing about because I too wanted to be the good daughter. Because your mom becomes defensive it might be better to have a doctor, social worker, family therapist or counselor talk to her about her treatment options.

Everyone is so different. Make sure the doctor gives your mom a full evaluation. Could she have diabetes? Maybe her blood sugars are all over the place affecting her emotions? What about her diet? Does she need more activities to participate in? Could any of her meds be causing mood swings? Its not easy I know and you are doing the best you can.

Take care of yourself. Thinking of you.
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