Help - i am really struggling to cope

Hi, i just googled ‘how to stop caring for a parent’ and ended up here, i really need help and advice.

Long story, I’m 34 work full time and help care for my dad who was diagnosed with dementia 2 years ago, he’s 69. Although i do know he’s had it longer.

5 years ago i lost my sister to mental health, and he lives alone and has noone else but me.

His dementia is killing me, i have to do everything and he’s paranoid, nasty and i think hears voices, im having him assessed again atm.

In the last 5 years, my husband and i have had 4 miscarriages, and about to start ivf . And my husband lost his dad too. Today my dad tried to fight my husband with a hammer and told me ‘real women have babies and you can’t’.

I am completely broken, i can’t go on anymore. I know it’s the disease and not my dad, im sick of being told that. It’s still an empty stranger who abuses me everytime i do his cleaning shopping, meds, appointments etc.

Social services say he’s fine living independently as he can shower and dress himself, physically ok. He has carers give him meds twice a day. He’s paranoid and has delusions about so many different things, and i cant cope anymore, i dont want this life anymore.

What can i do to get more support and have him looked after? My mental health is at rock bottom and i cant care for him anymore. I didn’t ask for this, i didn’t want this life i feel so trapped.

Any advice welcome, thanks.

Hello & welcome Jenny

So sorry to read of all the problems you have experienced and are still experiencing!! As I am sure you are well aware you need to look after you own health. And doubly important in starting IVF.

There is help you do not have to look after your Dad. Given today’s episode with your husband this should be reported straight away to Social Services and his G.P. Dad is a risk to himself and others. Carers going into your Dad need to be made aware. To get more help you need to withdraw your assistance and tell Social Services. That extra help needs to be added or a residential placement found. Just because he can do some physical personal that doesn’t mean he is mentally stable or safe. Social Services have to complete an at risk assessment protocol. And make sure you tell them. If you can when similar incidents occur have you phone ready and record. All local authorities have an out of hours emergency number. Get the number and have in it your phone.

There will be carer support groups in your area who have experience staff. Someone for you to have support and speak with locally.

Thanks for your reply, so his doctor has prescribed some anti psychotic medication, starting tomorrow which is what i was dropping off when this happened. Ive told the carer this is new medication to start.

But the doctor wants me to check him too, i can’t do it i just can’t.

Social services just said to see how the medication goes, and id he gets violent to call the police or an ambulance.

I can’t live like this not knowing what I’m walking into, i have no support from family, only my husband who my dad has decided os following him and won’t allow him any where near him. He said he wants us out of his life now and to not come back.

Jenny know one is going to hold you to account. You can not be made to care for anyone and can walk away.

However, if you wished to challenge the care plan on this basis…

assessments that don’t accurately reflect the needs of the person care and support plans that don’t meet all eligible needs

Hi Jenny

What you’ve been told here is absolutely right: I’d just add a couple of things. Firstly, talk to the Helpline - it’s open from Monday to Friday between 9am and 6pm - 0808 808 7777. There’s an email address, too -

My Mum has dementia, and it’s always worse when she hallucinates - she sees people who are long dead, and hears all sorts of voices, including a choir singing one of her least favourite hymns. She became less inhibited in her language, and has occasionally been violent, but she’s now in care.

It seems to me that social services are assuming that your father still has capacity to make decisions, something that they will assume unless the question is raised. Considering his behaviour, that may be questionable now, and may be worth raising?

Hello Jenny

Thanks for posting in the forum about your situation. We were concerned to read that you are having a really difficult time at the moment. In addition to the helpful responses from sunnydisposition and Charles, I have sent your post to our helpline and asked them to respond as soon as they can. I hope you will receive some advice by email from one of our advisers by tomorrow.

Wishing you well