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Topic: Helping a parent that won't get help

12 posts, 0 answered
  1. gloria10
    gloria10 avatar
    131 posts
    25 June 2021

    Hi,

    I have been concerned about my mum recently. I've noticed her mood changing over the last few months and at first, I thought she was just whinging. Now I see that she is in a bit of a slump and it's getting worse. I understand she lost dad within the last few years, it has been a tough time for her, but it concerns me that even though my siblings and I suggest she gets the help she is reluctant to and keeps going into negatives again.

    Being her daughter I feel that she doesn't listen to my advice, even though I've had similar issues before. I'm not sure how to deal with it or help her, but I also need to manage my own mental health. I make sure I rest up when I need to and continue to exercise as I feel better from it.

    How can we help her? Any advice would be appreciated, thank you.

  2. Katyonthehamsterwheel
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    Katyonthehamsterwheel avatar
    1568 posts
    25 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    Hi gloria10

    It's lovely that your mum has such caring children, who are concerned for her wellbeing. When you say mum's in a "bit of a slump", I wonder if you would care to expand on what you mean by that? It's your choice of course.

    If you've talked to mum and she's reluctant to get help, I'm wondering if there are more practical things that you could help with, but that depends on what's going on for her.

    Great to hear that you're looking after your own mental health. Katy

  3. gloria10
    gloria10 avatar
    131 posts
    25 June 2021 in reply to Katyonthehamsterwheel

    Hi Katy,

    Thanks for your time. I guess I’ve noticed her mood is down more and not much cheers her up. She is also focusing on negative things more than positives in her life.

    She also seems to repeat the same issues.

    She has said she wants to see a doctor, but doesn’t always go through with it.

    Based on some things she has said I suspect she has PTSD as she keeps things about things from years ago.

    I guess I feel like I owe her for being there for me when I was unwell, but I’ve only got so much advice.

  4. geoff
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    geoff avatar
    15310 posts
    26 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    Hello Gloria, thanks for getting back to Katy and also feel the pain you are experiencing for not only your mum but also your siblings and yourself.

    Whether or not your mum is suffering from the loss of your dad, her husband needs to be determined by her doctor, especially if she is beginning to repeat herself while this may be in its early days, and I can't say as I'm not a doctor, but perhaps the easiest way is for you or one of your siblings is book an appointment for her, under the guise of having a checkup and tell her only once you are at the doctor's with a promise to take her to her favourite coffee shop after.

    The other issue is for you to get the help you may also need because any mental illness can be activated once again as different situations happen to arise at any time, different triggers are capable of doing this and we need help to be able to cope with any you might not be prepared for.

    We hope to hear back from you whenever you're available.

    Geoff.

  5. gloria10
    gloria10 avatar
    131 posts
    26 June 2021 in reply to geoff

    Thank you Geoff. You’re right, there could be other things going on a doctor needs to check. I guess mums often relied on us to work things out, but this isn’t something I can do for her.

    I have started looking into psychologists for myself and I’m not working to take a break.

    I guess I need to let her take the reigns on this one.

    Thank you 🙏

  6. smallwolf
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    smallwolf avatar
    5765 posts
    26 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    hi.

    my dad has some health issues.

    mum is fine.

    mum will go with dad to the GP. There are various reasons for this.

    Now... in relation to mental health, it took myself (and mum?) about a year to convince dad to speak with a professional about mental help. At this time, I was also seeing them once a week because of my own situation.

    On the advice... what you said here can said to your mum... I dont have all the answers or I dont know.

    But you can still listen.

    And you can say "that must be " which is perfectly OK.

    If it requires a visit to a GP can someone make the the appoint to go with her? There is a difference between denial of a problem and not following through.

    I also think from your post you care very much about your mum and to say something like "I care very much about you and would like to spend more time ... and this is hard on you ... and to do this maybe having a chat with your GP would be helpful. What do you think"

    Tim

    PS. Beyond blue also has pages on supporting some which might be worth reading as well.

  7. Katyonthehamsterwheel
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    1568 posts
    26 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    Hi there

    Thanks for getting back to us. Yes, we can't force people to get help, but we can support them to do so if they wish. Does mum keep herself busy? Does she do things she likes? Have some nice friends? If she's lost her life partner (and you your Dad, sorry for your loss), then perhaps there is a gap there, and too much time to think can lead us down a negative path. That's sort of what I was thinking of when I wondered if there were other things you could assist with. But I'm not sure of the circumstances. I helped a friend to access social groups, and went along the first few times for a bit of extra support, when they were a bit lost and down. This may or may not be appropriate to your mum's situation, but just throwing it out there :)

    Another thing we can do for people is to let them know how/where they can get help. You could provide some support numbers such as the Beyond Blue helpline, and then it would be up to her if she wanted to call or not.

    Take care. Good on you for looking after yourself, and looking out for mum. Katy

  8. geoff
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    geoff avatar
    15310 posts
    27 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    Hello Gloria, thanks for getting back to u.

    If you ask the doctor about the 'mental health plan' this will entitle you to 10 Medicare paid sessions with a psych per year, although because of the virus we've had to cope with you may be able to have more sessions, ask your doctor.

    This can apply to you, your mum or anybody else and will enable someone who is trained to help you, although can I just mention, that if you do see a psych, it's best for the patient and the psych to be able to talk freely about anything that's concerning you because if you don't feel comfortable talking, then you need to find one that suits you, otherwise the help you're after won't be able to be achieved.

    Sometimes parents aren't able to discuss what's troubling them to their children, as they believe they won't understand what they're talking about, but this can be so wrong as they watch their parents develop as well as experiencing their own concerns as well as any friends who may be suffering.

    Please let us know what transpires, Gloria.

    Geoff.

  9. gloria10
    gloria10 avatar
    131 posts
    29 June 2021 in reply to geoff

    geoff said:

    Hello Gloria, thanks for getting back to u.

    If you ask the doctor about the 'mental health plan' this will entitle you to 10 Medicare paid sessions with a psych per year, although because of the virus we've had to cope with you may be able to have more sessions, ask your doctor.

    This can apply to you, your mum or anybody else and will enable someone who is trained to help you, although can I just mention, that if you do see a psych, it's best for the patient and the psych to be able to talk freely about anything that's concerning you because if you don't feel comfortable talking, then you need to find one that suits you, otherwise the help you're after won't be able to be achieved.

    Sometimes parents aren't able to discuss what's troubling them to their children, as they believe they won't understand what they're talking about, but this can be so wrong as they watch their parents develop as well as experiencing their own concerns as well as any friends who may be suffering.

    Please let us know what transpires, Gloria.

    Geoff.

    geoff said:

    If you ask the doctor about the 'mental health plan' this will entitle you to 10 Medicare paid sessions with a psych per year, although because of the virus we've had to cope with you may be able to have more sessions, ask your doctor.

    Hi Geoff,

    Thanks for your support. I wasn't aware there might be more sessions available with the Mental Health Care Plan. I spoke with a GP about this recently and he was encouraging me to get one, but I need to find a Psychologist that's suitable.

    I've thought about what you and Katy said and I did need some perspective. There is only so much I can do to help mum. I have encouraged her to go to a GP for various reasons, but only she can make that choice and I don't want to badger her, there's not much else I can do.

    I also think we need some space. I do check in on her nearly every day, but perhaps she needs time just to be herself and clear her head a bit.

    The other thing, I need to start focussing on my happiness. I've let exercising go a bit, but I started that again today and it was great.

    Thanks again for your kind words, it has helped.

  10. geoff
    Life Member
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    geoff avatar
    15310 posts
    30 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    Hello Gloria, give your mum some time to herself but ask her if she would like an alarm buzzer around her neck, then if she falls over or something terrible may happen, then she can push the buzzer and people, the ambulance or yourself can come to check her, if she believes this to be a good idea, then she may need a letter from her doctor, this kills two birds with the one stone.

    If, however, she doesn't want this and you leave her alone, you can then get on with doing what you like to do, but if she rings you, then may be she doesn't want to be left by herself.

    I have a buzzer around my neck and have needed it several times and then taken to hospital as I've fallen over and needed stitches.

    Geoff.

  11. geoff
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    geoff avatar
    15310 posts
    30 June 2021 in reply to gloria10

    Hello Gloria, my reply is waiting for moderation as I used a common saying but it has a word the computer has picked up.

    Thanks.

    Geoff.

  12. gloria10
    gloria10 avatar
    131 posts
    28 October 2021 in reply to gloria10

    It's been a few months since I wrote about mum, I thought things were getting better. Mum was often there when I was younger and has always been a support, but I thought as I've started to get stronger and I'm taking better care of my overall wellbeing that it might help our relationship.

    It has been the opposite. When I started a new job recently she started to push me away and said I didn't need to call her. I have definitely reduced my calls with her, but I can't help but feel she just doesn't want to hear from me much at all.

    It has definitely triggered some anxiety as I can't help but worry about her health, plus it is new for me trying to go on more as if she isn't there and I think that's what bothers me. The other thing is that she can make time for my siblings and friends of hers and I just feel pushed aside, even though I was there for her over the last few years.

    Has anyone else lost contact with their parents? Did you find it helped?

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