Seeking advice

In 2008 my mother suffered an aneurysm and was admitted to ICU for a month as well as being in a regular room for another month afterwards. During her time there she suffered a stroke, which paralyzed her right side for a short time as well as a minor heart attack. Her stroke as well as every other complication left her unable to return to work. I understand that some days the patients can have their ups and their downs, but I don't know what to do anymore. I'm seeking advice on how to deal with this situation. Though its been at least two years since her accident I still can't cope with the present situation. Before the accident my mom was sympathetic, committed to doing something as well as energetic. After her accident everything changed. She doesn't care or acknowledge someone's feelings and will say whatever is on her mind, whether good or bad. Throughout the day my family and well as I will try to get her moving and get her to go places and do things, but she's become lathargic. She doesn't leave the house, if so it's very rarely, and complains when things aren't done correctly, though no instructions are given. Also, when told a story she only recieves the information that she wants to hear. When she retells the story and it's wrong and she's corrected she immediately calls them a liar. She thinks everyone is out to get her and doesn't want to help her. My family has been trying so hard to get her to do things and keep a happy environment so she comes back to normal. Recently, it hasen't been working. She's always so depressed and runs when faced with a confrontation. I read that some of these things are the after effects of when blood is on the brain but nowhere have I read how family members or relatives can deal with this to make it better, if possible. Someone please help, because I'm only 19 and I'm at my breaking point to where I don't know what to do anymore.

Nicole, As the Mom of two teenagers and a survivor myself, I just had to respond to your post. I’m so sorry that you are going through this at such a young age. When someone suffers a rupture, it affects the entire family, not just the patient. It is a miracle that we survive, but the other side of survival is learning to live with your “new” brain. It can be difficult at times for everyone involved. Have you talked with her GP and explained her behavior? I would ask that she be evaluated and see if she needs medication for depression (very common with an aneurysm) or maybe a therapist to talk with, or maybe both. It is a major adjustment for your Mom, her whole life has changed and sometimes it can become overwhelming. At only 19 you also need to get some kind of help with your Mom, just to get a break from the worry of taking care of her. Can you speak with her doctor and ask for suggestions such as a neuro evaluation, possibly some kind of cognitive therapy, or even a companion to come to the house two days a week, for just a few hours a day? I am not a medical person so these are just suggestions. I would start with her doctor and take it from there. Your Mom would be so proud of you for taking care of her so well, she’s just not able to relay that to you I’m sure. Please take care of yourself and keep us posted on how you both are. Kim

Hello Celestine,

For a comprehensive and easy read on the situation you describe above I refer you to the book titled, “Stroke and The Family: A New Guide”, by Joel Stein, MD. It explains it all there and much more.

Harold Fernández

Hey this is old! I’m closing it.