Hi, As well as suffering from underactive thyroid, M.E., Eczema, Under active Adrenal glands and depression.... Then this happened: My mum has Vascular Dementia which is breaking my heart, My daughter left for university last Saturday and all my 3 brother's have fallen out with me became Mum has given me financial support over the years because I desperately needed it. I also suffer from Terrible depression which I have already mentioned, but with going through the Menopause for 10 years, my depression and anxiety is just too much. I have been taking Venlafaxine for 11 yes, now updated to 300 mg per day. I take NDT and B12. I am so I'll, can't go out, stay in bed, cry so much. I can't do anything. My partner trys to help by giving me advice, but I simply can't act on this. I am not working, I used to be Social Worker then a Tutor. I am now at Rock Bottom. Please, please help...
Too much: Hi, As well as suffering from... - Mental Health Sup...
Dear Booblet, I hope to offer some suggestions, and hope you don't find them too patronizing or inappropiate, but just give them some impartial consideration. I have had depression and anxiety for decades, don't have thyroid issues or M.E. . Have had issues w/ family over money and me not being able to work due to MH. Mum has vascular dementia; I know what you mean about it breaking your heart.
First I wonder if your Mum & yourself have support workers? Where I live services are inadequate, and I have had MH support only in fits and starts. Mum was luckier as adult social care is very good in her area, but on the other hand her designated social worker was the pits. You should be getting support to advocate for for your Mum if she no longer has capacity and no-one close can or will do it. My anxiety went through the roof the years I was my Mum's carer, to the point where my issues with insomnia became chronic and then too, I went through the menopause, which also impacted on depression due I think to the hormonal/chemical changes which health profs. would not take on board until I ended up in a crisis house...
Sometimes, it is fair to say, health professional are not doing the best they could for you, as really it's a lottery out there, not just a postcode/service lottery, but whether you get the best or the worst person appointed to you.
So I found the non-statutory services to be the most help. Age UK was not very active in my Mum's area, but more so in mine, and I got good advice from them. Small, very local charities provided chair exercise classes and weekly lunch clubs that my Mum was able to get to for a time. When this came to an end, she got to attend memory clinics at the local day hospital, organised through the NHS as a direct result of the vascular dementia diagnosis. There was even a volunteer driver service that picked her up and brought her home again, and carers would make sure she was dressed and ready when I couldn't be there.
It got increasingly hard to get MUm to go out as she was embarassed by the memory issues and how this affected her cognition/speech. Sometimes it would be almost literally a battle, but if you know your Mum well enough, you should know when to push and when to give way.
That being said, I don't know how active you are in your Mum's care but I'm guessing from your own health issues that you can't do as much as you'd like...my health took a toll from being my Mum's carer but I couldn't really have done it any differently. The lesson I took away from that is the carer has to look after themselves first, before they devote all their time and energy to another.
I took some comfort in reading a book called "Contented Dementia" (basically, the person is still the person we know and love, but they are not able to make any new memories...)- also with vascular dementia, the short-term memory and language centres seem to be the most effected, so that the personality seems to remain, and I found great comfort in that.
I became quite controlling over my Mum's diet, making sure she had lots of greens, berries, and not too much sugary or processed foods; fortunately she ate like that anyway so it was more of a challenge for the carers' than it was for her (some were loathed to take the extra few seconds to put some salad in her sandwiches...). I also got her lecithin granules which were sprinkled on her breakfast, and I swear to this day that they helped slow down the progress of the dementia...
I had my own battles with venlafaxine, and decided to wean myself down to a lower dose, because I was too out of it, getting more clumsy and always feeling vague.
You hopefully have a regular medication review with a medical professional?
With my own health and life issues, surprisingly it has been the local authority that has stepped forward most recently, when the charities they contract out to have been able offer me practical support for the things I am no longer able to manage myself. I hooked up with them through a mixture of self-advocacy, a supportive GP and being completely straightforward with everyone I met regarding my MH and telling them exactly what sort of help I needed in terms of how my condition affected me, so that they were working from my script rather than their own (which is usually based on getting someone through their CBT programme/back into work).
For yourself, also, I wonder if you have tried any holistic treatments? Massage was helpful for me, like hand or head massages, or reflexology if you can get someone to visit. Maybe your partner would be willing to give a hand or foot massage or just help with a foot bath- I like to put epsom salts in a bowl to soak my feet. I've personally got into subtle healing techniques, like crystal therapies and essential oils. I can't stick to meditation but I do find controlled breathing techniques helpful, especially when I get into bed. Also I make sure the wifi is turned off at night, and I unplug everything that can be unplugged and not just left on standby, as I have diagnosed myself as sensitive to electro-magnetic frequencies.
If you could try some new therapies/treatments it would also be something to talk about with your daughter, so that she will be consoled when you speak to her that you are also bringing something new into your life.
Finally, I wonder if you have a pet, or access to animals? I would love to have an animal around, but can't keep one where I live. I find myself feeding the local squirrels as a panacea when I go out, and often come across other people doing the same.
Animals are so healing when we are living in our complex human environment of obligation, expectation and judgement. I really wish you the very best outcome in your journey. I visit/post here rarely these days, so please don't be offended if you do send a reply and don't get an answer, though I will try to check.
Hi, Sorry with late reply. Thank-you so very much for your wonderful reply to my situation. You are so kind and thoughtful. I agree with you that many professionals like GPs do not do enough to help, especially with MH. I have a GP app tmw and have took your advice and will tell the GP (warts an all) exactly what I'm going through - my version NOT theirs. At the moment I keep breaking down, yesterday in Costa's when my partner and I visited my daughter at her uni 200 miles away. It was awful. I am taking 300 mg Venlafaxine per day, started with very low dose 12 years ago or more? Slowly graduated to 300 mg for the last 6 months. Not helping. What you said regarding your mums Vascular Dementia ( same as my mums) I will get the book. Most m gets 4 x hrs per day with x 2 carers. She is totally bed bound. But, like you said with VD their personality still remains... I have a massage gift which I will use this WK. Holistic therapies - I much prefer but I am trying so hard tov accommodate them, but it is so hard with how I'm feeling and limited funding. Hope your feeling better.