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Mental health, married adults, Georgia

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My brain is not running straight at the moment. Just please throw in advice anywhere possible.

 

I'm in PA, she's in GA. Don't read the first sentence and say go to the ER, because it's way more complicated than that!

 

My mother is bipolar. Currently aggressive, manic, paranoid, slurring speech.

 

The current paranoia is over her husband's not actually happening infidelity, both online and with her sister. However, this moron husband goes and repents and asks for forgiveness! Obviously this is the "proof" needed. They've only been married 5 years and he has no idea what he's dealing with. 

 

So, given that she's married, can my aunt still attempt to have her declared unstable? Obtain POA? How can the rest of us override the husband? I'm not physically included because I'm 900 miles away. But I'm doing the leg work as much as I can. 

 

I'm currently trying to get through to her VA psychiatrist. There's a note in her record that yes, she was a little manic, but it was acceptable given her "finding out" about the infidelity.  

 

She NEEDS to be hospitalized. 

 

She has shot herself (almost 30 years ago), and is usually hospitalized every 3-5 years with homicidal and suicidal thoughts and ideations. 

 

One of her sisters is currently scared of her. The other sister says she's never seen her this aggressive. 

 

She is on new meds, and it could be that they're contributing, or possibly haven't built up enough. 

 

So immediate solutions? Long term? She's running their bank accounts dry and should really have someone take control of her money. 

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Call police for a well check? If she acts crazy with them maybe they can have her put on a psychiatric hold?

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So, what is going on with the husband, does he not see she is having a problem?  He doesn't want to have her taken to the doctor?

 

Anyway - I'd get her in to see her psychiatrist or a GP as soon as you can.  It may be if several people tell the husband that you've seen this arc before and it ends badly, he will see that there is more to this than he realizes.  If she gets bad enough, take her to the ER anyway.

 

You might look to see if there is some kind of crises hotline for her locally - they would be up on the best way to proceed in her area.

 

In the past my dad has been admitted to the mental hospital in a manic episode - he was taken by his mom and aunt.  There was no wife though so I'm not sure how that would have worked.  He certainly wasn't keen on being there himself.

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I agree with calling for a welfare check. Get more eyes on the situation who might have some legal clout to help protect her from herself. What a tough situation :grouphug:

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She's on her way to VA clinic for a CT scan. It's far, so hopefully I can get to a person before they get there. 

 

Can't call for a well check because of the perceived cheating that her husband is asking forgiveness for. 

 

It's also GA. It takes a LOT to get involuntary care.

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So, what is going on with the husband, does he not see she is having a problem?  He doesn't want to have her taken to the doctor?

 

Anyway - I'd get her in to see her psychiatrist or a GP as soon as you can.  It may be if several people tell the husband that you've seen this arc before and it ends badly, he will see that there is more to this than he realizes.  If she gets bad enough, take her to the ER anyway.

 

You might look to see if there is some kind of crises hotline for her locally - they would be up on the best way to proceed in her area.

 

In the past my dad has been admitted to the mental hospital in a manic episode - he was taken by his mom and aunt.  There was no wife though so I'm not sure how that would have worked.  He certainly wasn't keen on being there himself.

 

 

We're going over him. We all have enough messages from him showing he has no idea what needs to be done. He's so beyond clueless!

 

She's now talking about having found me on her computer and all over youtube. It makes no sense (I don't have a sex tape out...Lol). But the problem is that what she's finding has to do with me "on" his accounts or something. 

 

Granted she's FAR from any kind of rational thought, but a huge part of this is that she doesn't grasp computers, devices, and the internet. So when she "finds something," it's not a thing. I'm not there to see what she's finding, but others who are there agree it's lack of rational thought and lack of computer understanding. 

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is slurred speech normal with bipolar?

could something else be going on (medically) to exacerbate bipolar symptoms?

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We're going over him. We all have enough messages from him showing he has no idea what needs to be done. He's so beyond clueless!

 

She's now talking about having found me on her computer and all over youtube. It makes no sense (I don't have a sex tape out...Lol). But the problem is that what she's finding has to do with me "on" his accounts or something. 

 

Granted she's FAR from any kind of rational thought, but a huge part of this is that she doesn't grasp computers, devices, and the internet. So when she "finds something," it's not a thing. I'm not there to see what she's finding, but others who are there agree it's lack of rational thought and lack of computer understanding. 

 

Well, sometimes if you have no experience of that kind of thing, you do have to go through it before you get it.

 

Anyway - with the slurred speech - you mentioned she was on new meds and that could be connected.  It might be worthwhile to play up that angle a bit as it's very objective.

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is slurred speech normal with bipolar?

could something else be going on (medically) to exacerbate bipolar symptoms?

 

I'm thinking both. Yes, she slurs when she's manic. She sounds like she's on too many benzos (and she happens to have clonazepam). 

 

Medically, she's got a lot going on. She needs a combined psych and medical stay to sort everything out. 

 

I just found out that her bipolar meds of THIRTEEN YEARS was stopped cold turkey and a new mix started. This was a single medication that kept her fairly stable. She was still hospitalized on it, but those were more like needing breaks and not for med adjustments. 

 

All of her thyroid meds have been stopped, she was recently (finally!) diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and is on meds there. Aunt says her house is littered with full sugar empty coke cans. 

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Well, sometimes if you have no experience of that kind of thing, you do have to go through it before you get it.

 

Anyway - with the slurred speech - you mentioned she was on new meds and that could be connected.  It might be worthwhile to play up that angle a bit as it's very objective.

 

Neither one will accept meds being off because she is perfectly stable; he cheated and we're conspiring against her (now true, given the severity). 

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I'm just so sorry. Other than calling and alerting the doc/hospital she is on her way to see I don't know. I think thee husband needs to be aware he could be in danger. I am so sorry. Hugs to you.

 

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Call police for a well check? If she acts crazy with them maybe they can have her put on a psychiatric hold?

 

To me, calling police for a well check on a person with mental illness would be a last resort, simply because most police officers are not well trained in this, and things do not go well if the person presents aggressively. Plus, they won't bring her in just for acting crazy. They see lots of crazy everyday, and one thing they do know about mental illness is that the person can't be held against their will unless they present a threat to themselves or others. It takes a lot to get involuntary care no matter where you are. 

 

It's a difficult situation. I hope they have a great person waiting to speak to her when she gets to her appointment.

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Neither one will accept meds being off because she is perfectly stable; he cheated and we're conspiring against her (now true, given the severity). 

 

I was thinking more of something to say to the medical people.  They will likely know her own perceptions can be very off.  But all the medication changes you mention should make the doctors and nurses perk up their ears.

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If you can get her there, Coliseum Hospital in Macon has a good psych facility.  It has a door on the far left side of the hospital.  Have them take her there for an evaluation and they will likely admit her.  Much better than a wellness check option, ER, baker act, etc...  I think it is about 2 hours away, most likely the best thing close to her.  

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My sympathies...my mother is severely mentally ill and in an institution at this point. My young adult daughter has had delusional thinking at times too, so I understand the difficulties.

 

It's going to be tough getting her help without her cooperation at this point. Providers are unlikely to talk to you because of HIPAA; they legally shouldn't talk to her husband either without her written consent. So your best bet is doing whatever you can to get her to trust you, despite the delusions.

 

If she starts making threats, or indicates a willingness to harm herself or others, there will be more that can be done legally.

 

Keep working to get her to the VA. Do whatever you can to try and calm her down so she will work with the providers. The ER is actually a terrible place for the mentally ill, so only use that as a last resort. My mother did live in Atlanta for years, but her care was terrible, so I don't have much to recommend that would be better than what you have going on.

 

Once she is stable, try to get her to sign consent forms for future use, in case she needs family members to intervene.

Edited by GoodGrief

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I'd call police for the wellness check (which they may or may not do), but beyond that there is nothing you can do unless she does something dangerous/illegal.  BTDT many times.

 

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My sympathies...my mother is severely mentally ill and in an institution at this point. My young adult daughter has had delusional thinking at times too, so I understand the difficulties.

 

It's going to be tough getting her help without her cooperation at this point. Providers are unlikely to talk to you because of HIPAA; they legally shouldn't talk to her husband either without her written consent. So your best bet is doing whatever you can to get her to trust you, despite the delusions.

 

If she starts making threats, or indicates a willingness to harm herself or others, there will be more that can be done legally.

 

Keep working to get her to the VA. Do whatever you can to try and calm her down so she will work with the providers. The ER is actually a terrible place for the mentally ill, so only use that as a last resort. My mother did live in Atlanta for years, but her care was terrible, so I don't have much to recommend that would be better than what you have going on.

 

Once she is stable, try to get her to sign consent forms for future use, in case she needs family members to intervene.

 

The thing about calling doctors is, while THEY cannot tell family members things, there is no law against them listening to information provided by family members.

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The thing about calling doctors is, while THEY cannot tell family members things, there is no law against them listening to information provided by family members.

But the doctor can and, in my experience, DID, tell her patient exactly where the information came from, so anyone wanting to share info with a doctor should be prepared for that possibility. My mom’s primary care provider, an NP, did exactly that when I called to tell her my mom did not know what day it was and was delusional. My mother was LIVID, and the idiotic NP did nothing about the problems I reported. It is a good thing I don’t care, but if anyone does care about a relationship with the patient, be aware of this risk.

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I'm thinking both. Yes, she slurs when she's manic. She sounds like she's on too many benzos (and she happens to have clonazepam). 

 

Medically, she's got a lot going on. She needs a combined psych and medical stay to sort everything out. 

 

I just found out that her bipolar meds of THIRTEEN YEARS was stopped cold turkey and a new mix started. This was a single medication that kept her fairly stable. She was still hospitalized on it, but those were more like needing breaks and not for med adjustments. 

 

All of her thyroid meds have been stopped, she was recently (finally!) diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and is on meds there. Aunt says her house is littered with full sugar empty coke cans. 

 

I'm so sorry.  

 

my brother doesn't believe in mental illness - and he allowed my mother's care to lapse. . . . .and her rx weren't renewed.  so she was off cold-turkey.

I got her back on them and stable.  she was happy.  then she died.

 

Neither one will accept meds being off because she is perfectly stable; he cheated and we're conspiring against her (now true, given the severity). 

 

 

my understanding is most bipolar think they're stable and they don't like the drugs.   

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To me, calling police for a well check on a person with mental illness would be a last resort, simply because most police officers are not well trained in this, and things do not go well if the person presents aggressively. Plus, they won't bring her in just for acting crazy. They see lots of crazy everyday, and one thing they do know about mental illness is that the person can't be held against their will unless they present a threat to themselves or others. It takes a lot to get involuntary care no matter where you are. 

 

It's a difficult situation. I hope they have a great person waiting to speak to her when she gets to her appointment.

 

:iagree:  My dh is bipolar, and once years ago he had a particularly bad manic episode. He was sitting in a parked car in the middle of a below-zero cold spell drinking a beer. He told me he planned to spend the night in the car so he didn't have to drive after drinking, so I called the police to go and check on him because I was concerned he was going to freeze to death. I figured if he was at risk of hypothermia, they could drive him somewhere warm for the night.

 

They charged him with a dui (did I mention the car was parked and he wasn't actually driving it?), arrested him, threw him in jail, and gave him absolutely no medical care for his mania. They didn't even give him his normal medication while he was in jail, which really helped the mania. *snort*

 

With mental illness, most LEOs are worse than useless.

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my understanding is most bipolar think they're stable and they don't like the drugs.   

 

It's a perfect storm of several things. The drugs make them start to feel better, so they think, "Hey, I didn't need meds after all, I would have gotten better on my own!" They just don't seem to connect the medication with their improved mood and stability.

 

Also, bipolar people tend to blame others for their actions, so when their loved one convinces them to take medication, they inevitably blame that person for the issues, associate the meds with that person, and quit taking them to punish the person. I mean, everyone is different, but this is a really common pattern with bipolar people.

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:iagree:  My dh is bipolar, and once years ago he had a particularly bad manic episode. He was sitting in a parked car in the middle of a below-zero cold spell drinking a beer. He told me he planned to spend the night in the car so he didn't have to drive after drinking, so I called the police to go and check on him because I was concerned he was going to freeze to death. I figured if he was at risk of hypothermia, they could drive him somewhere warm for the night.

 

They charged him with a dui (did I mention the car was parked and he wasn't actually driving it?), arrested him, threw him in jail, and gave him absolutely no medical care for his mania. They didn't even give him his normal medication while he was in jail, which really helped the mania. *snort*

 

With mental illness, most LEOs are worse than useless.

 

wow..that's @$$

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Yeah, I was beyond infuriated. It was just ridiculous. 

 

MEANWHILE....my sister passed out at the library (she showed up out of her mind and drunk).  They called 911.  They came and I told them she was drunk (on top of having an episode).  They did nothing.  NOTHING.  I had to force her to come home with me.

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MEANWHILE....my sister passed out at the library (she showed up out of her mind and drunk).  They called 911.  They came and I told them she was drunk (on top of having an episode).  They did nothing.  NOTHING.  I had to force her to come home with me.

 

:sad:

 

The lack of mental health care in this country is... I don't know. Appalling doesn't even begin to describe it. It's a freaking humanitarian crisis.

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In most situations I defend police, but in this case I would definitely make it a last-resort scenario, and only call them if she actually gets suicidal or homicidal. In other words, only when it might be worth it to risk your sister's life to save the lives of others.  Even in towns where police are taught how to deal with mental health and deescalate situation, right now, with like 5 police & sheriffs officers murdered on the job in the last few weeks, they are all going to be on their guard, and if she acts or speaks in any way that is threatening, she may end up dead.  There were 3 or 4 in Colorado and 2 in Ohio.  I'm guessing in Southern GA there aren't that many towns that focus on deescalation of anything.

 

I honestly think your best scenario is getting the husband to align with you - ie: why did he confess to cheating if he didn't cheat???  Will he help you go before a judge and have her declared incompetent?

 

What did the hospital staff in Lake City say?  Have you thought about taking her to Gainesville (FL) instead?  I'm guessing from their alignment with UofF that they may have better resources for psychiatric care.  They are definitely open longer hours.  From the website it looks like it's still an approved center for South Georgia.

 

And I agree, lack of psych care is a humanitarian crisis.  And the amount of money we're spending keeping psych patients in prisons would surely be better spent on other solutions instead.

 

 

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Op, I’m in that area. There is a place called greenleaf that is in Valdosta (one hr away from Tifton) that may be a good fit. I’ve heard good things about them. Of course, you’d have to get her there somehow. My brain is not functioning right now either... did you say her husband could drive her?

Don’t call the police except as a last resort. We are a little away from your area and the mental health place ds goes to even told us not to call the police if he had a breakdown, but to call them instead and they would send someone to our house to take him in. I don’t think this particular place has an office in tifton, though. However, once she’s stable, it may be worth looking into (I can pm you the exact place, if you’d like).

 

Oh, jeez, you said VA. Try lake city’s VA. We’ve used them for several family members. Maybe a little over two hrs from tifton.

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On 2/13/2018 at 2:55 PM, Mergath said:

:iagree:  My dh is bipolar, and once years ago he had a particularly bad manic episode. He was sitting in a parked car in the middle of a below-zero cold spell drinking a beer. He told me he planned to spend the night in the car so he didn't have to drive after drinking, so I called the police to go and check on him because I was concerned he was going to freeze to death. I figured if he was at risk of hypothermia, they could drive him somewhere warm for the night.

 

They charged him with a dui (did I mention the car was parked and he wasn't actually driving it?), arrested him, threw him in jail, and gave him absolutely no medical care for his mania. They didn't even give him his normal medication while he was in jail, which really helped the mania. *snort*

 

With mental illness, most LEOs are worse than useless.

 

nm 

 

I'm sorry about your dh's charges.   I spend quite a few nights along and worried with young kids when my dh was manic.  I'm wish I had great words of wisdom. 

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Op, I’m in that area. There is a place called greenleaf that is in Valdosta (one hr away from Tifton) that may be a good fit. I’ve heard good things about them. Of course, you’d have to get her there somehow. My brain is not functioning right now either... did you say her husband could drive her?

Don’t call the police except as a last resort. We are a little away from your area and the mental health place ds goes to even told us not to call the police if he had a breakdown, but to call them instead and they would send someone to our house to take him in. I don’t think this particular place has an office in tifton, though. However, once she’s stable, it may be worth looking into (I can pm you the exact place, if you’d like).

 

Oh, jeez, you said VA. Try lake city’s VA. We’ve used them for several family members. Maybe a little over two hrs from tifton.

I tried Lake City today! She was heading in for a CT scan. Do I got through to her primary doc’s nurse. Nurse said she’d send a note to the social worker. Nothing came of it as far as I know.

 

I’m waiting to hear if she’s home.

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Hmmm. I was under the impression that you’d deal directly with the VA, not her private dr. Let me ask my mom and see if they have to go through their regular dr first. It may take a few minutes to get her.

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Hmmm. I was under the impression that you’d deal directly with the VA, not her private dr. Let me ask my mom and see if they have to go through their regular dr first. It may take a few minutes to get her.

VA has primary care docs. They are in smaller clinics outside the hospital and some are in VA hospitals as well. Many veterans go to the VA clinics and hospitals for their primary care, my dad did for quite a long time.

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VA has primary care docs. They are in smaller clinics outside the hospital and some are in VA hospitals as well. Many veterans go to the VA clinics and hospitals for their primary care, my dad did for quite a long time.

I was just about to post that the dr at her local va should see her. But if she’s manic and it’s an emergency situation, can she still go to the ER and then they can evaluate and hopefully transport her to lake city?

**if I’m misunderstanding, please forgive me. I’ve been sick since Thursday night and my brain is just done.

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The thing about calling doctors is, while THEY cannot tell family members things, there is no law against them listening to information provided by family members.

 

True, but my experience with many, many, many providers is that they are exceptionally reluctant to do so. And sometimes will repeat to the client what was said (understandably, IMO), which can cause its own complications. BTDT countless times. A lifetime of this.

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But the doctor can and, in my experience, DID, tell her patient exactly where the information came from, so anyone wanting to share info with a doctor should be prepared for that possibility. My mom’s primary care provider, an NP, did exactly that when I called to tell her my mom did not know what day it was and was delusional. My mother was LIVID, and the idiotic NP did nothing about the problems I reported. It is a good thing I don’t care, but if anyone does care about a relationship with the patient, be aware of this risk.

 

IMO, the assumption with the providers is that the family members are as ill as the client, until proven otherwise. And that may often be true, so I don't blame them. But it sure complicates working together to bring health to the client/family member.

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Does your VA have hospital/emergency care? I’m in Texas and if you walk into the VA emergency center with active psychosis, SI/HI, or anything like that, triage transports them to our inpatient facility. We have a small one here, but they often ride by ambulance to our big facility about 150 miles up the road.

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Does your VA have hospital/emergency care? I’m in Texas and if you walk into the VA emergency center with active psychosis, SI/HI, or anything like that, triage transports them to our inpatient facility. We have a small one here, but they often ride by ambulance to our big facility about 150 miles up the road.

 

It doesn't always work that way. If there is an available mental health bed, immediate transfer might happen. More often though the person is warehoused in the ER, in a situation that often makes the symptoms worse. I've seen it happen with my own daughter.

 

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/psychiatric-patients-face-long-waits-in-er/

 

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/10/17/498270772/how-gaps-in-mental-health-care-play-out-in-emergency-rooms

Edited by GoodGrief
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Does your VA have hospital/emergency care? I’m in Texas and if you walk into the VA emergency center with active psychosis, SI/HI, or anything like that, triage transports them to our inpatient facility. We have a small one here, but they often ride by ambulance to our big facility about 150 miles up the road.

The issue with everything like this is that she doesn’t think she needs help. He doesn’t believe she needs help. So no one brings it up.

 

Her psychiatrist did see some manic behavior, but it was declared acceptable because she had “just found about the infidelity.†Psych still doesn’t know that the infidelity isn’t a thing, but is a manifestation of the paranoia.

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my understanding is most bipolar think they're stable and they don't like the drugs.   

 

Or they know they're manic, but like it. Lots of people feel absolutely great in a manic phase, ten feet tall and bulletproof. 

 

In most situations I defend police, but in this case I would definitely make it a last-resort scenario, 

 

I don't even view it as defending them vs not, because I don't think they're trying to be jerks most of the time. They simply are not trained in dealing with mental illness, nor are they given the time and resources to do so. 

 

Why did her husband apologize to her for cheating on her, if it didn't happen?

 

For the same reason people give false confessions to the police: they just want it to stop. People in a manic phase can be absolutely unrelenting. Add in that paranoia and a skewed vision of reality can also be symptoms, and it becomes very hard to deal with them in a rational way.  

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