I need help! Liver Disease

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kellywarren51
New Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 5/26/2008 10:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi All,
 
Im looking for some help as my mother has Hep C and in her final stages of Liver Disease with cirrhosis, she is 49.
 
Mum continues to drink on a daily basis and still to this day doesnt belive alcohol is a problem in her life.  This is what is happening:
 
She has many 'bad days' they consist of being unable to balance and walk, sleeps most of the day, can not maintain a conversation, she has very yellow eyes and is always having nasty falls.
 
In the past she swells in her tummy and legs, has vomited blood has had quite a few seizures and hallucinates.  Shes on alot of medication but does not want medical attention as she quote 'she doesnt need to hear any more bad news'
 
Mum consumes on adverage approx 8-12 litres of wine a week.  I took her away for the weekend and she did not consume alcohol for 2 days - this meant she had the shakes sooooo badly she couldnt even sip water and vomited everywhere upon the site of food.  she yet again said it was a 'bad day' my nan looks after mum part time, she too is a heavy drinker and doesnt believe mum has a problem with alcohol.  I am made to belive that mum is sick regardless of how much she drinks but becuase ive been seeing this for 5 years and watched it get worse i blame the alcohol and have become the 'black sheep' in the family as im putting everything down to drinking.
 
Im at a loss, i dont know what to say or help her anymore, im forced to watch her destroy what life she has.  I have little information about final stages and i am extremly frightened that one day she wont be ok.  Does anyone know the last few stages/signs before death? does anyone know how i can help her without her getting angry? anyone know what i can say to my nan?
Any information would be great,
 
Thanks,
 
Kelly

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 5/26/2008 10:57 AM (GMT -7)   
Kelly, I am sooo sorry you are having to go through this.  I suggest you read Hepatitis and Drinking and also The Stages of Liver Disease (or something like that) on the first page of threads, and go on to the 2nd page for more info.  We see situations like yours all the time, so you will be able to glean much info from previous posts.  I will say that drinking is the very worst thing anyone with liver disease can do--even one drink kills/damages liver cells.  For someone with hep C and cirrhosis (which I also have) drinking will hasten death.  However, a person has to want to stop drinking and to get better.  If your mum doesn't value her life enough to stop drinking, there isn't much you can do.
 
It sounds as though you are in Great Britain, from your language.  Alcoholics Anonymous is all over the world.  Perhaps you can call them and find out if there is a detox facility near your mother.  She probably could not stop drinking on her own, even if she wanted to.  Over here, we have the Meyers Act for alcoholics who are out of control.  A person can initiate this Act to get the alcoholic help, if he/she is unwilling to admit a problem or doesn't want help, and is basically killing oneself.  You might have something similar over there.  Your mum is so young to just throw away her life.
 
The only other advice I can give you is to stress to your mum and aunt that even one drink is too much for someone with chronic liver disease--and this comes from a sober alcoholic (21 1/2 yrs. w/o a drink) with chronic active hep C and cirrhosis, who is a liver cancer surviver and is 65 yrs. old. 
 
Hugs,
Connie

kellywarren51
New Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 5/26/2008 4:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Connie for your reply!
Meyers Act for alcoholics sounds interesting and i will follow up on this and i hope it applies to australia!

Ive explained that one drink is very deadly to her but she doesnt feel that way infact i dont think she knows what she looks like i guess a big problem is my nan. i dont understand why sh cant see it. I constantly get comments like ' i dont think you understand how ill your mother is, you blame the drink but its not' when mum has her 'bad days' nan immediatly states ' kelly she hasnt been drinking' but i can smell it all over her skin.

Ill see what other information i can did up

Thanks again
Kellxx

Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 5/26/2008 6:00 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Kelly, I just wanted to welcome you to HealingWell. Connie already gave you the best advice. I ditto everything she has said.

If your nan is a drinker also, she just probably in denial about what the alcohol is doing to your mom. She doesn't want to believe the same thing can happen to herself or that she is enabling your mom in her disease.....alcoholism. But it is actually up to your mom to decide whether she wants to fight to live or just give up and die.

There's an old saying here in the USA.....You can lead a horse to water but you can't force him to drink. That goes with anyone with any kind addiction. You can talk to them to you are blue in the face but they are only going to really listen to you when they are ready.
Unfortunately many wait to long to listen. My husband was one of them.

Take care......thoughts and prayers for all of you.
Pink Grandma
Forum moderator-Hepatitis

When the going gets tough....the tough get going! Don't always know where I going but I get there anyways.


shadowsghost
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 489
   Posted 5/26/2008 8:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Kelly, I worked many years in a rehab and now live with a recovering alcoholic with ESLD and it sound like your Mum, if she chooses help, needs to detox in a hospital. Not one good rehab will keep her they will transfer her to a hospital. I know you have social medicine there and good centers and facilities. If you can get her to a hospital you can expidite help by notifing the social worker and doctor about her ACTIVE drinking as she will deny it to them. Once in the hospital they are obligated by law and moraly to treat her health and detox with appropriate medicines and emotional help. You can call emergency with whats called Mental Status Changes and have her evaluated at least in the U.S. you can. Ask a social worker at any local clinic. I had to do that for a friend, he was mad for awhile but he got over it when he felt better. Sue

kellywarren51
New Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 5/27/2008 6:05 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks guys for all your advice.

I today had the courage to again confront mum - it was a very long and emotional conversation and i explained her health status and inpact it has on the people around her.. I think she understands. Her greatest challannge is her pride and dignity and admitiing she has a problem. My conclusion was correct - she didnt think it was that bad.
I now need to offer small steps for her to take becuase at this stage the big picture is soo overwealming for myself and mum. Its not as simple as giving up booze. I have advised her to get counceling but this step is really hard. any advice on different steps to take now she understands? or any wording i can use - i think going to the hospital is too big and is going to friten her from doing anything right at the moment

Thanks again for your help
xx kell

whirlwind
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 8/5/2008 4:50 PM (GMT -7)   
I hope this gets to you....
 
I am going through the same thing... My mom and dad are both alcoholics, and are in MAJOR denial. The problem is that no one knows it except me and my sisters. My mother now has liver cirrohsis and was in and out of the hospital many many times about 2 years ago.  She controls her symptoms with lactulose and diuretics, which on one hand is a good thing, but it helps her keep up the dillusion that she is well, when really she is just covering her symptoms. She looks so different from the beautiful mom that I am used to seeing when i was growing up. I am 28 and I've recently within 6 months seen 5 of my uncles and aunts die from various reasons, breast cancer, liver cancer, natural causes, car accident, & murder. I am getting scared that we will lose my mom too, because I just feel now that anything can happen. I want to talk to her but I dont know what to say. The doctors told her in order for her to get on the transplant list that she needed to go to AA. She never went, she felt like she was too good for that, because to her, she is not an alcoholic. When we go out my dad buys her drinks, and when she is at home she drinks. I try to throw the alcohol down the sink, but my dad goes back out and buys it, and so does she. I dont know what to do, I dont want to be without a parent like my cousins. If my mom loses her life to alcohol, then I will live with the guilt that this was preventable. I want to do something, I want her to do something, I want my dad to do something. But I dont know how to talk to them without making them feel as if I am against them, because I am not. I want them to see their problem, and see how they are enabling each other, and how they are killing themselves and my sisters and me. This story is so complicated and so deep that I cant begin to tell you all of what we are suffering, I can only say that I know you know...
 
What did you say when you spoke to your mother? What did you use to help her realize she had a problem... tell me anything
 
thanks.

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 8/5/2008 10:25 PM (GMT -7)   

Whirlwind, welcome.  It looks like you picked up an old post from May.  I don't think we've heard from that poster lately.

I can say that I know what you are going through, as my mother was a raging alcoholic.  I later became one, too, but thankfully sobered up after drinking alcoholically for over 20 yrs.  I now have 22 years sober.  And yes, I went to AA.  I kind of tapered off my drinking as I was fightened when I started having blackouts.  I also saw myself becoming my mother.  By the time I got to AA, I was only drinking beer...but alcohol is alcohol, regardless of the form it's in.  Prior to becoming alcoholic, I was addicted to hard drugs.  It only went on for 18 months--'68-'69--but sharing needles left me with hep C, which caused liver cancer and cirrhosis.  Thanks to treatment at Mayo, I am now cancer free.

Have you ever been to Al-Anon meetings?  They are for people who are living with or close to alcoholics.  You might find that helpful.  If you have siblings or other relatives who are concerned, you could also try an intervention.  However, you need guidance with that.  You would need to contact a rehab facility or other place that could tell you how to go about that.

Alcoholics most always have to hit rock bottom before they are willing to get help.  Nothing you can say will make a difference.  Unfortunately, my mother never did sober up--not until late age when she had a "wet brain" and senility and was in a nursing home.  I had cut off communication with her years before, as her behavior upset me too much and she had hurt me so badly all my life and continued to do so, even 1400 miles away.

I'm glad you have found us.  Please do start a new thread, introducing yourself.  Otherwise, you can easily get "lost."

Hugs,

Connie


Butterflythree
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 954
   Posted 8/6/2008 7:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Welcome to the forum Whirlwind, I am also glad you found us. There are many people here that understand exactly what you are going through. My husband has cirrhosis brought on by hep C and alcoholism. He stopped drinking after the diagnosis of cirrhosis. For many years I tried to convince him to stop drinking, especially after he was diagnosed with hep C. Nothing I said ever made a difference. When we learned he had cirrhosis, I felt very guilty, like i should have tried harder, should have done something. I have come to realize that there was nothing that I could have done to change the situation. It is in the alcoholics hands. If they don't want to stop then they won't. And sometimes it is not that they don't want to, it is that they can't. Alcohol has too much power over them. Pray that your mother and father gain the strength to get control over their problem. I will include them in my prayers also. I know that God hears and answers our prayers. Also I know what you mean about not wanting to lose your mother. I was 28 when my mother was murdered by my stepfather who then took his own life. You never stop needing your mother.

Take care of yourself and don't give up hope.
Butterflythree
 
There is always hope!


hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 8/6/2008 9:55 PM (GMT -7)   

Butterfly, how terribly traumatic that must have been for you!!  My dad committed suicide by gunshot to the head when I was in my 20s.  He and my mom had divorced when she was pregnant with me, and I had no contact with him until I was 21.  We had talked on the phone a few times, and exchanged pictures and letters...but I still hadn't met him at the time he took his life.  It was horribly traumatic and painful, and pushed me right over the edge into hard drugs to kill the pain.  Of course, I still had to deal with the issue when I finally got clean.

Hugs,

Connie


shadowsghost
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 489
   Posted 8/7/2008 7:26 AM (GMT -7)   
Connie, It amazes me everytime I read posts here how much as a group we have in common other than the illness that brings us together. My birthdad as I chose to call him comitted suicide 6 months after my husband was killed by a young person driving while intoxicated. Dad was sober for a few years but I guess sobriety was tough so he shot himself. Mom was also a drinker she passed this year at 68 with alzeihmers, she had many years of sobriety though. I left home as a teen and found my own extended family. They finished raising me and did an awesome job too, I have 10 brothers and sisters and over 200 nieces and nephews...... way cool.
Sue
When I started counting my blessings my whole world turned around.


hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 8/7/2008 3:49 PM (GMT -7)   

Sue, that's a lot of family!!  :-)    In AA, we are told that we can create new, extended families.  It seems that's what you've done.

Hugs,

Connie

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