1. Maggiemay

    Maggiemay Registered User

    Mar 26, 2009
    YORK, UK
    Hello I am from the UK and my 78 year old Mum is suffering from 'memory problems' - at least that is what it says on her care plan from the local Mental Health Team.
    From as long as I can remember I have supported my Mum emotionally, (I am now 58)She has not been an easy person to relate to and we have had times when I have had to 'back off' from her just to preserve my own mental health. I've always found it difficult to set boundaries with her as far as what I could couldn't do and what I was prepared to listen to and have said to me and in some ways I have maybe been my own worst enemy because of wanting 'to keep the peace'. She has been very outspoken to the point of being rude and hurtful to me and the rest of the family but I am the one who has always been there for her and who lives nearest it is therefore me now who is dealing with the consequences of her 'memory problems'
    I love her very much in spite of everything and I am heartbroken seeing her getting old, forgetful and frail. I am very stressed and suffer from depression myself due mainly to how I have reacted and dealt with the many issues with Mum over the years - my married/family life has never been normal as I've always been juggling and balancing all the dynamics between us all.(Mum has never got on with hubby)
    The only reason my Mum has been placed under the wing of the Mental Health team is because I rung her GP in desperation one day after the 'umpteenth' conversation with Mum regarding wanting to just die in her sleep and her having no will to live.
    This is so long winded I know and I could go on about how unhappy she has been most of her life but what I'm facing now is that she is just very lonely and still wants to die in her sleep so she won't be a burden., she's getting more confused and not looking after herself properly but when I get the SW come to talk she doesn't seem so bad....?
    I was so distressed and anxious yesterday evening after my visit with her I just cried for ages when I got home. I've rung her SW today to arrange another visit with a view to getting her into an 'extra care housing' - a new development which is being built locally and due to be finished in the summer. I can only think that this is the way to go now....sorry for rambling I'm just at the end of my tether....:(
  2. Helen33

    Helen33 Registered User

    Jul 20, 2008
    Hello Maggiemay

    I think one of the things that you might find very helpful is to keep a journal of all the little things (or big things) that you notice are different;) Keep a date and a time when you record these things.

    When I first started to notice things with my husband, I used to even doubt myself because a small incident would then pass and be forgotten. Then there's be something else and that, too, would pass and be forgotten. There was no particular pattern and no telling when and what might occur. Your journal can then be very helpful to you and the medical profession and SW in order to help them understand what is occurring. It is hardly likely that a Social Worker would visit at just the moment something unusual was happening.

    I wish you all the best Maggiemay and will look forward to finding out how you get on.

  3. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    #3 Margarita, Apr 9, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2009
    Welcome to talking point Maggiemay

    My mother use to tell me that many a time over the years , shes had Demetria.

    I would of thought your mother would of seem a Psychogeriatric or physiologist within the mental health ?

    As my mother saw one they also did a memory test on her.

    Has your mother seem a Psychogeriatric or physiologist within the mental health?

    As I am wondering what they have diagnosed in your mother ?

    Or have they not told you anything yet, but are in the progress of doing it ?
  4. Vonny

    Vonny Registered User

    Feb 3, 2009
    Hi MaggieMay,

    Sorry to hear of all the problems, at least you have your mum referred to the Mental Health Team now. Has she seen a consultant for a memory test? Memory Problems seems a bit of a vague diagnosis.

    Also, has she had a scan to check for signs of dementia in the brain? It sounds as if you in the early stages of getting a diagnosis. I would push for a Memory consultant to test her if this hasn't already been done.

    In the meantime, "ramble" away as much as you like :) That's one of the things Talking Point is for. Others are crying, laughing, ranting, sharing good and bad times, and for giving and receiving loads of lovely support and advice.

    Hope things start getting better for you, and let us know how you are getting on

    Vonny xxx
  5. Maggiemay

    Maggiemay Registered User

    Mar 26, 2009
    YORK, UK
    Thankyou for all your replies...I am going to begin a journal that is a good idea. I agree the diagnosis of 'memory problems' is very vague. Previous to me consulting her GP myself my Mum always just went when she was 'tired and fed up' and was given anti-depressants which she took until she felt abit better, there never seemed to be any follow up appointments for prescription reviews and was just left to her own devices. I think her GP has done memory tests and she goes to a Day Centre run by SS twice weekly where she is monitored I think. Following a recent chest infection when she became quite ill and confused a CPN and some kind of consultant visited (I wasn't present) and a review was going to be done about her medication (she forgets to take the antidepressants and they have now been withdrawn) but I have heard nothing from anyone regarding that. They say she is not clinically depressed but is reacting with depressive symptoms due to her loneliness which in turn is making her more withdrawn and less like doing anything.
  6. windyridge

    windyridge Registered User

    Apr 7, 2009
    Hello maggiemay and welcome.

    What you describe rung lots of bells for me too and I would definitely agree with the advice that a memory test and proper assessment is a must. My mum also has a long history of mental illness and prior to diagnosis, when we all suspected that she was developing dementia, she became very depressed and withdrawn, refusing to leave the house and avoiding the complication of shopping and eating. We are a little way on now, but she still returns constantly to the desire to die and not be a burden. But then she also switches from this mood to an agressive desire to confront the world, a really over excited state, in the blink of an eye. Riding this roller coaster is really hard.
    I often wonder how much is the dementia and how much is a resurgence of longstanding mental health problems...

    I have found I have developed a real need to log everything that happens, and this does really help me get a bit of peace of mind from time to time. Because sometimes you are so tired you are all out of strategies and resources, but writing it down does help restore a bit of courage and strength.

    Good luck


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