Supporting someone with mental health issues when you have them yourself

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Thekatielou

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Jun 18, 2018
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#1
Hi, I'm new to this so please excuse me if I'm in the wrong part.

Im 28y/o and suffer from OCD and am prone to depression, although I'm fine at the moment.

I live with my mum who has agoraphobia and depression and I am struggling to cope.

Bit of a back story - I was never allowed out as a teenager, and only managed to start getting independance when I got my first full time job at 17. Since then I've always had to message my Mum to let her know I've arrived places and when I will be back. A few months ago I told her I wasnt going to do it anymore as I was enabling her as she would panic and call me if I was slightly late due to traffic. I work full time, and my days off/evenings are always booked up with her appointments for physical conditions (i.e not mental health treatment, which she refuses to go to) and Im exhausted. I mentioned moving in with my boyfriend of 3 years and since then she has non stop talked about it and every time she does she cries. At the moment I do everything - cooking, cleaning, driving her to appointments, going food shopping and anywhere else she wants to go. She's able bodied but refuses to go to the shop to get food etc but has been able to do it when I refused. When I'm at my boyfriends house I regularly get texts to say she hasn't eaten as theres nothing in the house. Im struggling with the level of dependancy on me and am desperate to move out but am worried as a few weeks ago I was working night shifts, and for those weeks she lived off toast (which she gloats in telling me as she knows I worry) our relationship is really struggling as I'm starting to get resentful of the dependancy that she refuses to admit is there. She kicks off if I speak to anyone as she's embarrasses but I need the support.

I don't really know what I'm asking, to be honest. Has anyone struggled with this?
 
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linus

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#2
I have a cousin that struggled with her mother that had a terminal illness (that lasted for 10 years) and she was held at home during her teens. It took her several years to calm down and live a "normal" life, somehow in her early 30s. You could talk to a psychiatrist about your mother and maybe with some medicines she could start looking at some therapies.
 
midnightphoenix

midnightphoenix

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#3
sounds like your mum needs to have professional help, doesn't sound like she's getting any :hug:

it's not your responsibility to look after her mental health, she has to get help, you can't do that for her :hug:
 
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Thekatielou

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Jun 18, 2018
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#4
She has been for CBT and counselling but as soon as it finishes she goes back to square one. I know this sounds selfish but I've had 3 mental breakdowns in the past and am terrified it will happen again. I want her to gain independance (or even to be assured that she will eat when I'm not there cooking so I know shes eating. She's been hospitalised twice for dehydration and has health issues due to not eating, as soon as she eats the health problems go)
 
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linus

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#5
You'll find that people are more resilient than we tend to think about and we just adapt with new situations, she might need help though, but it will have to come less from you and more from professionals.
 
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Thekatielou

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Jun 18, 2018
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#6
Thank you for your advice its appreciated. How can I get her help? She refuses to go and all we do is argue at the moment as I feel so trapped and am not sure if she's using it as a way to manipulate me
 
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linus

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#7
She could be manipulating as well, but don't assume the worst of her. First you go to a psychiatrist and explain the whole situation and get advise specifically for your case, you might find out some interesting ways to help her.
 
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