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Need help diagnosing my Mum

(7 Posts)
Gatecrasher61 Wed 22-May-13 16:10:35

She is 81, my Dad died over two years ago and last year we managed to sell her large house with a big garden and move her into a bungalow about 20 minutes from where I live. I have two sisters who live 40 minutes and 90 minutes away.

Since moving she has continually managed to find something wrong heath wise. Earlier in the year she was in hospital for a week with mild internal bleeding, which has now been resolved. She seems to thrive on being ill. She was almost angry when she was told that nothing was seriously wrong with her.

We can't get her to make an effort to go out and make new friends. She gets a visit from either me or one of my sisters at least twice a week and she always has a big list of jobs she wants doing. Some of these she COULD do herself, but she has us running around after her. My house and garden looks like a pig sty as I haven't been able to keep on top of the cleaning and maintenance. My sisters are the same. She also tries to play us one off against the other - but as we talk between us, this doesn't work.

Personally I think that my Mum needs something like a dog to give her some focus and get her out of the house but she doesn't want to seem to take responsibility for anything. Plus she is always blaming other people when things go wrong. Nothing is ever her fault.

She seems OK memory wise and does crosswords and word puzzles, but she is really hard work. I am sure either my sisters or I will snap soon and tell her like it is. She almost seems to have no motivation to do anything for herself.

My question is, does she have something wrong mentally and has anyone got any suggestions as to what we can do?

Rosa Wed 22-May-13 16:14:04

Sounds to me as if she is bored .. I think you are right she needs some interests or she needs to feel 'wanted or useful ' in some way.

Gatecrasher61 Wed 22-May-13 16:18:19

I think you are right, but when we try and suggest anything, she gets really angry and tells us off for nagging. I even suggested she tried the RSPCA to see if they wanted people to foster dogs on a short term basis, but she wasn't interested. She doesn't seem to want any responsibility.

My sisters and I think she might have depression - and so did one of her GPs. She was so angry she put in a written complaint about the Doctor. Perhaps I might try and get to see someone at her surgery.

Iseeall Wed 22-May-13 16:26:00

Is there a local church she could go to. They often have various groups/activities in the afternoon usually aimed at older people. It would be a good way to meet people local to her. Our local church is like this and every month or so a newsletter comes through the door telling us about church services and whats on.

Gatecrasher61 Wed 22-May-13 16:58:08

My sister is very churchy and taken her to all the local ones, but she always finds something wrong - she didn't like the car park, they were too "happy clappy" etc etc. She does still drive and knows how to use her sat nav, but always seems to find obstacles to things. We overcome these and then she finds another one.

Personally I am at the stage where I am just thinking feck it - and leave her on her own for a bit. While my sisters and I are running around after her, keeping her entertained it is not really helping the situation.

My Dad bought us up to be very independent and I am pretty sure he would be really disappointed in Mum if he knew how she was behaving. My Dad was a lot older than my Mum and she used to moan about him holding her back socially (he was also slightly disabled), but she hasn't made any effort to socialise on her own. It is like she is waiting to die.

Rosa Wed 22-May-13 17:01:05

Its a nightmare and ypu have my sympathy ...you could be right and she is refusing to accept it almost blocking things out and pushing the limits to you and your sisters. Are there any people from where she used to live that she was friendly with that could visit? Does she garden??? Thinking small gardening clubs. My father was like this but then he really did get some other medical problems and he now has short term memory loss. Agree a gp is a good place to start but guaranteed your mum will say everything is fine 100%and you need to either sit slightly behind your mum and use sign language or write to the doc beforehand...

Iseeall Wed 22-May-13 17:03:30

How about making her commit to something because "you need her help"

As she drives could she collect your children from school a certain day of the week, or run them to an after school activity. She might want to feel needed, would that work.

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