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Mum just been admitted to psychiatric ward

(9 Posts)
Bumblelion Wed 16-Feb-05 15:21:26

Oh my god! My mum has just been admitted to the psychiatric ward at our local hospital. Slight history - mum been suffering from depression since October 2003 (not first occurrence, first was when I was 10 years old, second when my first child was born (lasted 18 months) and a few times since then - more often since my dad died suddenly at 56 years old in February 2002).

My mum has suffered nervous breakdowns before, but this time she started suffering from a phsyical disorder (neuropathy caused through bad diet). When she is well, she is VERY well but when she is "poorly" as I call it, the healthy eating goes out of the window. She is only a "small build" - do not look at me and think my mum is my build! She has not driven since she first became poorly, but still managed to walk (not even "managed", just walked). On 1 Dec. my aunt (my mum's sister who has visited her on a Tuesday night for the last 40 years - my aunt has never married, lives with my nan) rang me and said she was concerned about my mum as she was having difficulty swallowing and walking. Took her to the doctors, they admitted her to the A&E at our local hospital and they kept her in. Stayed there until 31 December when we found out she had private healthcare and got her moved to a private hospital. (While in NHS hospital, fell over and broke her toe!). A few weeks ago the private hospital decided she didn't need "hospitaliation" but "convalesence" and got her moved to a convalescent home (for the over 60s but they took her as she will be 60 in April). The staff there (not medically trained) were very unsympathetic towards the depression and, for example, one worker liked to go into my mum's own bedroom, sit in the chair and say "oh, this is comfortable - might have a little nap". In his defence, he was only having a "laugh" with her, but because of the depression she couldn't see the joke. Got a phone call, and because she can't go home (lives in a 5 bedroom house on her own), the only option now is the psychiatric ward at Sutton Hospital. For me, this is my "hell on earth", such bad memories for me - first visiting her at 10 years of age.

How can I overcome my own grief at her being there (went voluntarily, not sectioned) to help her through this?

bundle Wed 16-Feb-05 15:26:56

oh bumblelion, poor you & your mum. are you able to go & see her? i'd imagine the place won't be as bad as your memories. can you speak to someone in charge there? at least she'll be getting proper care and treatment.

Newbarnsleygirl Wed 16-Feb-05 15:27:50

Since my own mum suffers with depression I can sympathise with you Bumblelion.

You just have to keep thinking that she is somewhere that will help her get through it and there are people with her to help.

Can you visit at any time?

{{{Big hugs}}} to you.

Easy Wed 16-Feb-05 15:29:36

Firstly, huge sympathies, this must be so very difficult for you.

You need to try to get the proper care for her. It sounds like this convalescence place was more just an old people's home. I think you (or possibly your aunt) need to speak to the consultant who treated your mother in the private hospital, and try to find somewhere more appropriate for her. Make sure things are clear with her insurers. If they think she's been discharged you may have problems getting continuing care for this condition, and clearly she shouldn't have been discharged, or mioved as she was.

The problem with someon with mental illness is that they need someone to take charge of dealing with the medical services for them. If you don't live close or you are juggling kids and a job it can be sooo hard.

I hope things get better soon

FineFigureFio Wed 16-Feb-05 15:30:32

I dont know Bumbelion Just wanted to add my support {{{}}} it must be a really difficult time for you

Bumblelion Wed 16-Feb-05 15:40:39

My portage worker (when I mentioned my mum's problems to her) - she is my youngest DD worker - youngest DD has Sotos Syndrome - mentioned to me that me and my aunt must both say categorically we cannot "be there" for my mum otherwise social services will not provide the care she needs. I can't do it because (1) I work part time, (2) am on my own after husband left and (3) have 3 children. My aunt cannot do it as she (1) works full time and (2) lives with my nan who is 84 and has had a triple heart bypass last year.

I know she is in the right place and (fingers crossed) she will get the care and sympathy, empathy and undertanding she needs but (I will visit her, however hard it is) I need to overcome my own fears and get over how I felt when I was 10 years old.

The one hard thing for me is that I will NOT take my children (aged 12, 8 and 3). I know it is their "nan" and not their "mum" but I will NOT put my children through the upset that I went through.

Visiting times are from 4 to 8 week days and 2 till 8 weekends. I will try and visit her when I can.

kymbo Wed 16-Feb-05 16:08:38

My thoughts are with you. When you are little,you kinda just get on with it don't you,as you get older you understand more of what's going on.
My mum is an alcoholic and has battled with depression for years. She was sectioned when I was 9 and I remember visiting her,it was horrible!
But I think things like that are at that age.
It good that she went voluntarily though,it show she's aware of the problem. My mother was taken kicking and screaming!
You'll get through it. Be strong.

Newbarnsleygirl Wed 16-Feb-05 16:11:47

Is there anyone close to you apart from your aunt who could go with you for support or even wait outside for you?

Bumblelion Mon 18-Apr-05 12:37:11

Quick update - I did cope with visiting her. As an adult I can now appreciat that the ward and hospital is not a scary place, the staff are caring and sympathetic, the other patients are "normal" people (like my mum) but just going through a bad time.

She is now better (she gets well overnight and can be well for years on end - so fingers crossed for the future). They have discharged her and she is coming to live with me for the short-term future - have converted my dining room into a bedroom for her. The ONLY reason for this is that she suffers from neuropathy (a new thing) since December last year and cannot walk unaided. With luck she will improve over time. But mentally, it is like having my "old" mum back. If she was still poorly, I could not cope with her living with me, but because she is so well, it won't be a problem. I am just glad she is over this episode of depression (lasted 18 months) and I hope that she will carry on taking her medication (for ever if need be) to make her still feel well.

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