Worried and confused


Registered User
Sep 23, 2006
North West England
My mum has recently been diagnosed with AD. She is only 67 yrs old.

It has been a difficult 6 months, firstly trying to get her to the GP, and then for him to actually take it that stage further. She has had all the tests and has been seen twice by a lovely consultant Geriatrician from our local hospital and he prescribed her firstly with Anti Depressants, because she has been very depressed and weepy. He wanted to rule out depression etc. I know that she did start taking them daily, but has recently lapsed, and if you mention it to her she gets nasty and aggressive.

We are again seeing him today, sooner than anticipated, because only last week Mum confessed a huge secret she had kept for 43 years. (I found out that my Dad is not my biological father). As you can imagine this has come as a complete shock to me and my sister (Dad is her real Father) who are already trying to come to terms with Mums illness. I dont want to vere off the subject and for all intents and purposes my Dad is my Dad, he adopted me, he married my Mum & my real father didn't want to know.....

My Mum just keeps dismissing the fact she has severe short term memory problems, her words are "just old age." (She used to be such a strong character, and is still so stubborn) is really devastated she never told me sooner, and keeps saying she is a wicked mother.

I know I cannot take away her guilt, and for whatever reason she didnt tell me earlier, I will never know. But I am so afraid this is having adverse affects to her state of mind. She stated this weekend that she is "No Good for anything and wished she was Dead." What do you say to that????

I love my Mum so much, but just dont know how or what to do to reassure her that nothing has changed.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Regards Mel


Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
Hi Mel - welcome to TP!

I assume that what she has told you is true? i.e. verified by some other source? Assuming that's the case, I don't think you can do much more than keep on doing what you're doing - reassuing her that you love her etc. Unfortunately, if she has AD, this is not going to be an ongoing problem - eventually this, like every other memory, will fade. I doubt reasoning or words will help, even without AD a depressed person is depressed for a variety of reasons, none of which are particular responsive to logic (and here I speak as a well-medicated depressive).

I may be entirely wrong about this but I think you need to look on this as a chicken/egg situation. By that I mean is the situation causing the depression, or has the depression coupled with the AD brought the situation to the fore? From what you say, it sounds like the latter. If that is the case, about the only thing you can do is try to get the depression treated, since until it is, that specific issue is going to be front and centre in her conciousness. No amount of reassurance from you is going to change that, because it's more a symptom than a cause.

You should get more responses later on in the day when people log in after work.


Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
Hello Mel, I`m sorry you have so much to cope with just now.

I wouldn`t be surprised if your mum has some idea what is happening to her, even if she seems to be in denial, and that`s why she chose to tell you about your father, before it`s too late.

Any form of memory loss, dementia, Alzheimers or depression, lowers self confidence and self esteem so much. I`m sure many others who reply to you will agree they have often heard, the same sentiments `No use to anyone` `Would be better off dead`etc. expressed by sufferers.

My husband has been estranged from his close family for years. now he feels guilty, and wishes he could turn the clock back, but that`s not possible. He is 74 and the youngest, so all his family will probably be dead by now.

I hope you find support from TP and the strength to cope with your mothers earth shattering declaration.



Registered User
Aug 3, 2006
A Dad

Hi Mel, I am not in the habit of giving advice I can only tell from experience. No one can chose their Father, but a Dad is someone very special one choses. Up to age of around fourteen I wished and prayed for someone to love and be loved. After that I grew out of it and moved on to become emotionaly barren after seeing another lone kid I played with killed and only Christian Brothers at his funeral. I shrugged my shoulders and thought 'he's better off dead' When I met my wife I knew I'd found in her a real Mom and I tried to be the kind of Dad I'd wished for. So when people say "You never know what you got until it's gone" I'm only too aware of my good luck blessed with a very special girl and family. Is it therefore any wonder I keep her all to myself and will not share her caring? I would tell your Mom a special thanks for giving you a DAD.
It never ceases to surprise me that Doctors dish out pills for everything but the treatment of the AD without learning about the patient from the person who knows them best. As soon as my wife was confirmed with AD she was given Prozac. In hospital she was given Matazapine without me being informed. When she was in a NH she was given a whole bunch of medication without my knowledge. A lot later I learned it was for the effects caused by the lack of knowledge in the care of an AD patient. In the past three years under my control the only medication she receives is a dash of Lactulose in her dirinks twice a day. Hope I'm of some help. God bless. Padraig


Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
Yes my mother also said that "No Good for anything and wished she was Dead."

It must be so emotionally sad for you to hear that , that your mother wants to die also that your mother has AZ and then about your father, but all you can do is be the strong one for her, like she was for you.

Also I hope you don’t mind me saying I hope you seek counselling .

my mother also went in to a deep depression ,because my father had died then a year later was told she had AZ , my mother consultant took her of the ant depression medication and put her on medication for AZ , when she was diagnosed with AZ. It took a good 3 years to come out of it not saying those things of wanting to die .

It must have been hard for your mother to have keep that secret from you for so long , I wonder if that could be the underlay of your mother depression, keeping it in all those years feeling guilty , hiding it she could have been hiding the depression from you all in being the strong one . . Then now with the AZ coursing confusion she came out with it and now is showing the depression her real feeling she was hiding, sounds like you have a good consultant.

all you can do is show her your love .
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Registered User
Sep 23, 2006
North West England

Thank you all for your kind words and thoughts..........

We saw the consultant again yesterday & he wants to keep treating Mum for her depression first, and has arranged for her to go to attend a daycentre (NHS) maybe a couple of times a week, where they are also able to keep an eye on her too.

Of course at first she declined, but then she asked if she would be able to help with the "Older folks" making cups of tea etc. So I hope that is going to cheer her up a little, as she, like many others I have read about on here hates being on her own all day. I only hope she remembers she is going and will still want to next week.

The issues re my Dad, (who is still alive and divorced from Mum) are all in the open now and I just need to keep reassuring Mum that apart from knowing the truth, nothing has changed. I love her and my Dad exactely the same today as before I knew the truth. They have loved me and my sister unconditionally all our lives. And I know my Dad is so relived that I know the truth before anything happens to either of them.

I am going away tomorrow with my darling Hubby and our little girl for a weeks (very much needed) holiday in the sun. So I'll come back a visit this wonderful site next week, hopefully with a clearer head and a bit of a sun-tan.

Take care and best wishes to you all

Mel x x