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Please help me figure out what is wrong with my Dad

(17 Posts)
StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 10:57:58

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EnnisDelMar Tue 30-Nov-10 11:01:13

Starlight I'm sorry this is happening.

my first thought is depression.

Second thought is possibly dementia but from what you say he just sounds like he's withdrawn from social contact.

Has anyone spoken to him about it?

hillyhilly Tue 30-Nov-10 11:03:12

Gosh, I'm not sure what to advise, sounds hard going esp as he is quite young still really,
The only thing I can say is that my Dad (75) has hearing aids but they don't necessarily help all that much, he has to be "tuned in" to the fact that you are talking to him and he finds any kind of group situation (even family) very isolating as he can't differentiate voices over general sounds.
Could you see him on your own and talk to him about it? My Dad needs to be asked specific questions about his health to open up but once you get him talking he will do so freely but he would never instigate the conversation - "didn't want to worry you".
I'm no expert but perhaps he could be depressed, it could all be linked with the hearing and isolatedness and perhaps he needs to see the hearing people again.

muddleduck Tue 30-Nov-10 11:03:24

Does he live alone?

peggotty Tue 30-Nov-10 11:04:46

That's really sad, your poor dad. I would say depression too. When did he retire? When did he start wearing hearing aids. I wear hearing aids and they don't actually make your hearing perfect, only better - I struggle to catch things if I am in a group of people, and often miss a lot of the conversation, it's very frustrating and must be hard for your dad as a very opinionated formerly talkative person...

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 11:05:58

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GrimmaTheNome Tue 30-Nov-10 11:08:50

Why do you say he 'pretends' he can't hear?

If he really can't hear well that could explain a lot (and he may not want to admit the extent of the problem if he's an awkward independent-minded old bugger).

My FIL was deaf and it was hard for him except for one-to-one, looking at each other sort of conversations. He found it pretty hard to understand DD who was a bit lispy, and I had to slow down my speech. You could see him 'tuning out' when there was lots of background noise. It is a very real issue which can lead to isolation.

Whippet Tue 30-Nov-10 11:08:59

Agree with others - sounds like he could be showing early signs of depression/dementia or something similar?

Is there anything else that has changed about him? Is he as active/ mobile as he was?

Is his speech OK?

My Dad was diagnosed with Parkinson's (realised when he started having visible hand tremors) but thinking back, I now realise it started much sooner - his face was less animated, he was slower to move etc, his speech was becoming quieter...

Does your Dad live alone? Are you sure the hearing aids work?

Kids are very exhausting for older people though, and I know my MIL/FIL 'zone out' when they've had enough of our kids...

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 11:10:17

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GrimmaTheNome Tue 30-Nov-10 11:12:11

Oh - my FIL had a form of Parkinsons too. If he has something like that he may no longer be able to do the art and DIY things (or not well enough for his own standards).

Have you explicitly asked him to help with one of these projects and he's refused, or are you waiting for him to volunteer?

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 11:12:53

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StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 11:13:56

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peggotty Tue 30-Nov-10 11:16:18

All the things you are describing about his behaviour is really adding up to depression imo, but the trouble with awkward buggers is getting them to 1. admit it and 2. accept help!! Is there anyone he knows whose opinion he really respects (i.e someone who he would listen to properly!)

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 11:16:29

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canyou Tue 30-Nov-10 11:29:59

If he has said he cannot hear maybe it is true.
My Nan has a hearing aid and finds being out and about in company/groups is now hard work as it is difficult to filter background noise, she needs the person to face her and people with moustaches and beards are hard to understand as she had obviously being using facial expression and subconsciously lip reading for years.
My Dad is due to retire this year and our biggest fear is that he is going to lose a huge part of his identity and we are afraid he will become depressed
Dad is also an awkward bugger and it does make helping and understanding frustrating to say the least

GrimmaTheNome Tue 30-Nov-10 11:30:52

Hm - presumably when he wants information he looks at you when you're talking. And also he's motivated to process what he hears into an answer to his question, he knows the context of the expected range of answers IYSWIM.

StarlightMcKenzie Tue 30-Nov-10 12:10:31

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