1. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    Dad was really down today. Mum was really concerned when she came on Skype. She told me he had sat in his chair all morning, not wanting to move. He usually follows her around the house, but not today. He was saying he couldn't stand his dementia anymore. Couldn't stand the chaos in his head. It made mum worried enough that she dug out an old joke book and read jokes to him to try to cheer him up. He understood a few but most of them were too involved for him to understand now.

    He came to speak to me on Skype and I managed to cheer him up by playing some Irish folk songs on YouTube for him to listen to.

    I spoke to mum and discussed talking to the doc about this latest development. Dad's never been like this before. He's been sad, cried, etc., but never said that he couldn't stand it any more. I suggested to mum that he might benefit from anti-depressants. For once, mum listened to me. I think his state shocked her out of her usual self-absorption. The trouble is that she has brainwashed him into thinking the psychiatric nurse is a monster, so he doesn't want to see anyone about his dementia now. Ironic because now she wants him to see someone and he doesn't want to due to what she said to him. She told him they would "take him away".

    Well, as usual, I'll just have to see how this one plays out.

    There's no end to it, is there? Except for the final curtain.

    LS
     
  2. patsy56

    patsy56 Registered User

    Jan 14, 2015
    840
    Fife Scotland
    I so sympathise, OH went on anti-depressants yesterday one tablet and today he is a mess, dizzy, sleeping, weepy and as you can imagine making me feel terrible too. So right now I would say no....... but things might improve
     
  3. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    Hi Patsy,

    Sorry to hear your OH is down. It takes a while for anti-depressants to work, so give it some time. I take them, and they saved my life, literally. I was in a very bad place before I started taking them. What type is your OH taking? I take Lexapro, and they suit me very well.

    Fingers crossed today was just (another) bad day for dad.

    LS
     
  4. CollegeGirl

    CollegeGirl Registered User

    Jan 19, 2011
    9,534
    North East England
    I'm so sorry to read this, LS. It's such a horrible illness, but tomorrow might be different; better. He might forget how down he was today. Lots of things can affect our mood. If he carries on being like this for some time, though, I think your idea of anti-depressants is a good one.

    I was also on them for about three years, and they helped me, too. I took Citalopram and had no side effects, only positive effects. They were a last resort for me as I'd tried several other ways to lift my depression before resorting to tablets. How I wish I'd taken them sooner!

    Good luck x
     
  5. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    Hi CG,

    Thanks. Yes, I'm going to see how he is today and for the next few days. Mum finally seems to be understanding that how she behaves has a big effect on dad. He copies people's behaviour, so if she is in a bad mood he falls into one too. What makes me think this is the case is that if I ask him how he is, on the days he can explain, he'll start off by saying how mum is and then say how he is.

    I was talking to mum about this yesterday. This will sound a bit weird, but one thing about mum is she can't smile. (This is a classic and diagnostic symptom of schizophrenia) and even though she is on anti-psychotics, she still can't smile naturally. Even though this sounds petty, I think this has an effect on dad's mood. We talked about how he copies me smiling, and she is going to try to smile tomorrow to see if it helps. She's being very co-operative this week, which is unusual, but great. She must be really worried about him.

    Glad to hear you have also found anti-depressants that suit you, CG. I also waited ages before trying them because of bad experiences in the past. How I wish I had taken them earlier! I tried all the usual recommendations (yoga, sunlight, exercise, vitamins, fish oil, etc) for 2 months until it got so bad I couldn't walk and was planning on drinking drain cleaner. Went to the shrink the next day, got the pills, and they have changed my life! Thank god for drugs!

    LS
     
  6. CollegeGirl

    CollegeGirl Registered User

    Jan 19, 2011
    9,534
    North East England
    I also tried talk therapy and hypnotherapy. They helped a bit at the time, but didn't have any long-term effect and as soon as I walked out of the session I'd be back to square one. Yes, thank god for drugs!

    I'm sorry to hear about your mum not being able to smile, I've not heard of that before. I hope she manages to do it today and that your dad copies her. A bit like yawning! Smiling is infectious, so fingers crossed.
     
  7. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    We are lucky that they have much better psychiatric drugs these days.

    I didn't find out till recently when I was reading something about schizophrenia that inability to smile was a diagnostic symptom. That explained why mum has always found it impossible to smile naturally for photos (looks like a grimace, not a smile) and why she has always said to me "You are just like my mum; both of you can smile so naturally".

    I have a lot of issues with mum, but at the end of the day, she's had a very hard life. I need to be more understanding and less resentful.

    LS
     
  8. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,826
    UK
    Sounds like your dad has become the mirror image of his wife. Anti depressants really helped my mum, very little side effects and they have helped to lift her spirits which can only be a good thing. I try not to show how upset, sad or in pain I am, because she does 'copy' my symptoms.
     
  9. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    Hi Tin,

    Yes, I think you are exactly right about the mirror. Hopefully realising this can help him feel less down. He was a lot better today, thank goodness. Still very tired, but he seemed more like his old self. I showed him a video of my niece and we had a bit of a sing-song (well, I sang and he did his best to hum something). Mum was also calm too, which is maybe why dad was better.

    I'll try talking to mum about talking to the GP about medication. Suddenly the GP is much more available. I think it must be because I have been kicking up a fuss and making myself a nuisance to the Community Carer.

    I just feel grateful for any day that isn't hell for them.

    LS
     
  10. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    Dad has been okay-ish this last couple of days, but mum is coming close to carer's burnout. I can see that.

    I explained to her about the Admiral nurses and what they did and gave her the phone number. She said she was just sick and tired of thinking about dad and talking about him, and she just wants to go away and forget about it all, but then in the next sentence went back to what she always says about not wanting any help with care. She still refuses point blank to have any carers come in. She won't hear of him going into a CH or even going to day care for an afternoon.

    She's got to the stage where she now goes out into the garden to escape from him just for 5 minutes, but he is immediately knocking on the window for her to come back in.

    The GP went round last week to talk to her again about accepting help with care. I hope she'll listen. She's doing my head in.

    LS
     
  11. velocity

    velocity Registered User

    Feb 18, 2013
    173
    North Notts
    Your poor mum she probably is trying to hang on to her privacy, but suffering in the meantime. If she finds it difficult to smile this situation is possibly hard to accept. Incidentally I have worked for a well known Mental Health Charity and have met some people affected by this awful illness, as with Dementia all type of illness everybody is different! xx
     
  12. Long-Suffering

    Long-Suffering Registered User

    Jul 6, 2015
    426
    Hi Velocity,

    Yes, I feel terrible for her, despite how much I complain about her and how bad our relationship has been in the past. I think we are currently as close as we can be considering the lifelong dysfunction in our family.

    She wants to maintain her sense of control. She is an absolute control freak, but now she is torn between that natural tendency and the need for help to cope with what she can't cope with. It doesn't help that up to now she and dad have had negative experiences with some hospital/mental health staff that have prejudiced her towards CHs and the mental health people.

    I've been talking to her about CHs, and she has this very firm image of them in her head. She thinks if dad goes into a CH, the staff will drug him up and leave him unattended all day. She also thinks no one will be able to understand his needs and care for him as well as she thinks she does. And she also has this fixation on laundry. She is obsessed with the idea that they will make her wash his clothes every day and this stresses her because she doesn't think she'd have the energy to go to the CH every day to collect his laundry and she also has a phobia of washing machines. (It's a long story, but she has real fears about technology, especially computers, phones and washing machines. I am not really allowed to touch her washing machine in case I break it. She worries about what would happen if it broke, i.e. that people would have to come into the house to fix/replace it, and this gives her panic attacks just thinking about. Any conversation I start about CHs has the possibility of ending with her having a panic attack about the washing machine).

    I just re-read this and thought how ****ed up and crazy my family is. Seriously, this is why most of my friends have no clue what to say or do to help me! I've had almost 50 years of this crazy ****. No wonder I went nuts in January!

    LS
     
  13. Amy in the US

    Amy in the US Registered User

    Feb 28, 2015
    4,623
    USA
    Hi, LS. I don't have any brilliant advice to offer, just sympathy. (I'd offer you a cup of tea but it would be stone cold by the time it got from me to you!) You don't seem to be able to catch a break lately. It's hard.

    You know, even if your mother weren't f****d up and crazy, which she clearly is, it's still possible she would be resistant to the idea of a care home for your dad. Lots of very sensible people, who know better, and who would never want anyone to sacrifice their health and lives for them, are resistant to the idea of a CH for their family member. It does seem to be about control, needing to feel needed, having a sense of purpose, feeling nobody else could do as good a job, all those reasons and more. I imagine that it is an even more difficult decision to make for a spouse, than for a parent.

    This is not to say your mother is correct or being rational about the situation. Her laundry "issues" certainly do make your conversations, um, interesting, I should think.

    It is difficult to see their situation changing, short of a medical or other emergency/crisis. I'm so sorry. Post anytime you want that cold cup of tea!
     
  14. velocity

    velocity Registered User

    Feb 18, 2013
    173
    North Notts
    No family is perfect, it must be hell, I am sorry if I was hard but I do feel for your mum too. xx
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.