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Question
Posted by: H25 | 2012/05/16

NOT COPING

CS

Despite my trying (believe me I am trying &  trying &  trying), I can''t do this anymore on my own. I feel I do not have the expertise, patience and whatever else it takes (things of which I am sure there are plenty!) to continue looking after my mom. I am really struggling and now have more days where I just keep fighting with her & mdash  yes you (note I say possibly) and others might say about stupid small things, but to me together they are all relevant and she needs to be more aware of what I am having to deal with - I am finding it more and more difficult every day now - what can I do? On numerous occasions I have thought of going to frail care to ask for advice, but so far I haven''t got to going. I now wonder if I need rather to speak to my gp - I would have to do this on my own (to start with anyway) speaking to him with her would only add " petrol"  to an already (maybe) out of control, VERY heated situation!

What can I do? Please your help would be much appreciated.

Thanks

PS We live in an apartment in a retirement estate with (amongst other things!) a 24hr frail care centre

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I know what this is like, and people who have not been through it really don't appreciate the problem. It is harder than any of us imagine before we get there, and often more than we can handle, even if superhuman.
Where the main issue is handling / responding to her being difficult, a good frail care unit may indeed have useful advice. And they are at hand, so do ask them.
Where there is a degree of dementia, which tends to become increasingly severe, the problems steadily mount, accompanied by the tragedy there there is just less and less of the person you knew and loved actually present, each day. A dilemma can also arise, in that some medicines which can work wonders in helping the agitated and confused demented person ( like Risperdal ) to the point that for a considerable time it can return them to something very like their usual self from an angry, uncooperative and lost stranger, has the problem that some research shows that the use of such drugs may shorten the person's life by increasing the risk of heart attacks or stroke.
I know if I ever started getting into such a state, I'd want them to use the drugs, beause I'd far rather have a slightly shorter life at higher quality, than prolonged misery for myself and my loved ones.
As for getting help for your mom, the problem at this stage may be that she feels well enough still to reject any suggestion that she might need to see anyone or to accept any help. Then the problem No. 1 is to persuade her that she isn't as happ and content as she should be and could be, and that the advice of a suitable specialist could help improve the quality of life as she experiences it. A geriatrician may be a useful consultant, and though any good geriatrician should be very familiar with mental healt issues as well as physical problems in the elderly, it may be less upseting to her than a direct referral to a psychiatrist.

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2
Our users say:
Posted by: just been there | 2012/05/20

You dont say how old your mom is or if you work all day or any of those details, but in any event you need to get help. The frail care centre in the complex you live in is there for this very reason. Please for your mom''s sake and for yours, you must seek assistance. Do you have siblings? What is your mom''s physical and mental condition? These details help in trying to advise you. Unless you are able and prepared to devote all your time to caring for your mom, you should not be coping on your own.

Reply to just been there
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/05/16

I know what this is like, and people who have not been through it really don't appreciate the problem. It is harder than any of us imagine before we get there, and often more than we can handle, even if superhuman.
Where the main issue is handling / responding to her being difficult, a good frail care unit may indeed have useful advice. And they are at hand, so do ask them.
Where there is a degree of dementia, which tends to become increasingly severe, the problems steadily mount, accompanied by the tragedy there there is just less and less of the person you knew and loved actually present, each day. A dilemma can also arise, in that some medicines which can work wonders in helping the agitated and confused demented person ( like Risperdal ) to the point that for a considerable time it can return them to something very like their usual self from an angry, uncooperative and lost stranger, has the problem that some research shows that the use of such drugs may shorten the person's life by increasing the risk of heart attacks or stroke.
I know if I ever started getting into such a state, I'd want them to use the drugs, beause I'd far rather have a slightly shorter life at higher quality, than prolonged misery for myself and my loved ones.
As for getting help for your mom, the problem at this stage may be that she feels well enough still to reject any suggestion that she might need to see anyone or to accept any help. Then the problem No. 1 is to persuade her that she isn't as happ and content as she should be and could be, and that the advice of a suitable specialist could help improve the quality of life as she experiences it. A geriatrician may be a useful consultant, and though any good geriatrician should be very familiar with mental healt issues as well as physical problems in the elderly, it may be less upseting to her than a direct referral to a psychiatrist.

Reply to cybershrink

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