He wants to lose weight

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
25,561
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South coast
Well, here's an unusual one. OH has developed this fixation that he needs to lose weight. He doesn't, he wears exactly the same sized clothes that he did when we were married and he has always been slim, but it's his posture that has changed. He has become very round shouldered and hunched over and when he sits he slouches so his abdomen tends to stick out.

Normally he does not notice this, but on the first Sunday of the month we go to a monthly roast dinner in the church hall and this month he decided to wear his suit. He decided it was too tight and he needs to lose weight, so his solution is to cut out eating lunch. He will now only eat breakfast and then dinner in the evening. Not only is this a problem because he doesn't need to lose weight, but he also has dysautonomia and his blood pressure varies as he eats. His consultant has said that he needs to eat several small meals during the day to regulate his blood pressure, but he won't - he will only eat first thing in the morning and just before bed.

I'm not arguing with him, but I'm at a bit of a loss to know how to get him to eat during the day. Any suggestions?
 

SeaSwallow

Volunteer Moderator
Oct 28, 2019
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A difficult on @canary and I am not sure how you would resolve this one. Do you think that he would eat a 'diet' meal from one of supermarkets, such as WW meals.
 

DawnR

Registered User
Sep 14, 2022
156
0
Northumberland
It’s a nightmare, you can’t persuade a PWD to do anything they don’t want to do as I’m sure you are aware,
Would he have a smoothie at lunchtime, you can put ice cream in and loads of stuff, that’s what my husband has if he’s not interested in his lunch.
You could ask your GP to refer him to a dietitian, they could give him a diet to follow if you think he would take notice of what they say.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
25,561
0
South coast
I've tried offering healthy things like salads for lunch, but he just says he doesn't want to eat anything. Yes he would probably comply if a dietician told him what to eat, but that might take a while to sort out. I was hoping that someone might have an idea which I could do quite quickly. Smoothies might work as he may not consider it food - I'll give it a go
Thanks everyone
 

RM3

Registered User
Feb 4, 2024
727
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Hi @canary. It may not work or be the right option but wondered about saying that - weight loss/meds reasons, better to eat 3 meals, so splitting tea portion, over lunch and tea? Just a thought x
 

Miggs

Registered User
Jan 14, 2024
220
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An accessible small bowl of his preferred tasty snacks, including healthy bits he likes? Might tempt him?
 

sdmhred

Registered User
Jan 26, 2022
2,706
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Surrey
Buying some fortisip drinks and giving one of those at lunchtime???? would That be enough to prevent the BP changes.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
82,736
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Kent
Do you think this will last @canary?

Do you think if you just make a lunch for yourself and don`t mention anything to your OH, he might ask where is his?
 

My Mum's Daughter

Registered User
Feb 8, 2020
773
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Depending on finances, I'd try eating lunch out for a short while. Doesn't need to be anything fancy, sandwich and a drink in the supermarket café or a bag of chips from the local chippie, shared on the nearest park bench.
.
When you're desperate for an answer, anything is worth trying.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
25,561
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South coast
Some good thoughts here.
I think you are right @Grannie G , this delusion will pass, but he has been doing this for 10 days now. Me eating lunch in front of him makes no difference and he doesn't want to go out now. He's also refusing snacks

I think I'm almost going to have to trick him into eating with something that doesn't seem like lunch. Something liquid may well be the answer.

Hmm, I will think about it 🤔
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
25,561
0
South coast
Update

I havent updated this thread because its been a bit of a roller coaster ride, and Im still not out of the woods yet. Im also taking a break from the forum and I dont want anyone worrying

Well, first the good news:

OH has swapped over his drugs completely now (although it still needs to settle down and stabilise) and the seizures seem much improved. He also seems brighter, more chatty and more lucid.

The delusion that he is fat seems to have passed, but took a fair bit of doing. Giving him smoothies worked a treat (thank you @DawnR ) and so did giving him soup.
However, a few days after, he came downstairs while the carer was clearing up the bathroom, having got washed and dressed and instead of coming and sitting on the sofa like he usually does he headed out of the front door. I zipped out after him and found him wavering up the road with no rollator, or stick, or anything. I caught up with him and it turned out he wanted exercise because he needed to lose weight 🙈🙈🙈. The carer had come out as well and between us we got him back indoors. I then had a quick think and said we could go out a bit later as it would be best to go somewhere where the pavement wasnt so uneven. I thought if we went out he could have a walk and he might eat something while we were out (thank you @My Mum's Daughter ) - a sort of two birds one stone scenario! I drove down to the sea front and parked behind a cafe. He walked a way (I insisted her pushed the wheelchair "just in case") then needed a rest and I asked him if he wanted to walk back or for me to push him. He opted to sit in the wheelchair himself!! When we got back to the cafe I said I wanted a drink and he said he did too, so we sat down and I grabbed a couple of menus, I chose what I wanted and he he chose something too. Result!!! It did mean that we had to go out for a walk and lunch every day for the next week or too, but it got him back to eating again. Then as his lucidity improved, he realised that he couldnt walk very far and after a fall (he was OK) he decided he didnt want to go out any more. But at least he now will eat lunch at home and that is back to normal

Now for the bad news:

As his lucidity has improved he has become much more aware of his limitations and he is becoming increasingly frustrated. A couple of his carers have told me that when they were trying to help him with something he couldnt do he got very angry with them and blamed them for being unable to do it. They both commented that it was very out of character.

Now he is more chatty he is trying to make conversation and he regaled one of his carers with a story about a pink shirt of his (he doesnt have one, and never has all the while Ive known him), but he was using the most awful racist and homophobic terms😱 I apologised to the carer who was (fortunately) understanding. He has also started using a lot of swear words.

There is another thing too, which I dont want to say, but think I have to. One evening when he had gone to bed I cold hear him talking so I went up in case he needed me. Before I opened the door, though, I could hear what he was saying. I couldnt possible relate the words on here. It was basically rape fantasy using the most appalling and explicit words. Iwas (and still am) appalled. I didnt go in. I have heard him talking to himself on other occasions since then, but havent gone to listen to what he was saying.

All of this, needless to say, is totally out of character and I am afraid of him returning to the behavioural issues that Ive had to deal with in the past. I know that he could come off these tablets again, but his seizures are so much better controlled with them and I dont know whether these thoughts were going on underneath anyway as he was previously almost mute. I dont want to have to choose between him having multiple seizures and having behavioural problems, so at the moment Im crossing my fingers (and yes, putting my head in the sand) and hoping that its just a blip and will settle down as he stabilises on this new drug
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
82,736
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Kent
The good news is very good @canary and well done for sorting it.

I`m really sorry about the bad news.

You`ve been on the forum for 10 years now and it`s amazing you have managed so well and still have your OH at home. I`m wondering if you are about to face difficult decisions?

I can understand why you feel the need to take a break from the forum but hope it won`t be for too long.
 

DawnR

Registered User
Sep 14, 2022
156
0
Northumberland
@canary I’m so pleased the smoothies worked but so sorry to hear about your bad news.

You always give such good advice I’m happy I was able to help in a small way.
If you need a break from the forum then you should definitely do so, thank you for letting us know so we don’t worry.

I think when you play an active role in the group and not just dip in and out like me you must take on others problems and think about them. I work for the NHS and speak to patients I know I do this. I was on the 119 helpline right through covid and some of the people I spoke to I still about and hope things went well for them.

I hope your husband’s issues can be resolved soon.

Sending you a hug 🤗
Look after yourself

Dawn x
 

Graybiker

Registered User
Oct 3, 2017
350
0
County Durham
Canary, I’m so sorry you have all this to contend with right now, it must be so distressing for you.
I’m sorry, I have no advice or suggestions but I am so grateful for the wisdom & compassion you have shared. Please, do take care of yourself & I hope things improve very soon
xx
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
25,561
0
South coast
Further update

His epilepsy is definitely better controlled, but he has been getting a whole series of delusions, confabulations and obsessions.

After the delusion that he needed to lose weight and the obsession with walking, he started saying that he wanted to die and wanted assisted suicide. He also said that his mother felt the same. This is untrue - she has vascular dementia and near the end did indeed say she wanted to die, but this was in the final stage when she was dying anyway and the family (OH and myself included) felt that this was an expression of her acceptance of it. This was really very distressing and went on for about a week, but it is now passed

His latest delusion is that he can do everything himself and doesnt need his carers to help him, so he knocks himself out by insisting on doing everything himself and then after the carers have gone he is exhausted (and sometimes has a seizure). Hosting at its finest, but at least I feel on more solid ground here.

He is also still talking in his sleep (Im not listening) and has started groping me again.......

I strongly suspect that the trigger for his delusions and obsessions is stuff that he is reading in the paper/library books, but it is now pretty much all he can do. I am trying to steer him away from the more inflammatory stuff, but it seems as though even the most innocuous stories become part of his confabulations. I get the feeling that these thoughts were always bubbling up underneath, but he was so locked into his own little bubble and had become almost mute, so the thoughts went unexpressed - but who knows? Im finding the constant shifting of his obsessions hard to deal with and am feeling pretty fragile
 

Bunpoots

Volunteer Host
Apr 1, 2016
7,417
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Nottinghamshire
I’m so sorry you’re going through this @canary

I can remember how difficult it was when my dad had similar delusions and when he kept saying he wanted to die. Sorry, no advice. Just wanted to say I’m thinking of you and sending virtual (((((((((hugs))))))))