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How do you help some one who won't help themselves?!

My FIL was admitted to the hospital for the 4th time since Mar.09 with a stroke. Each one has gotten worse. He REFUSES to stop drinking & smoking. He refuses to spend his money on any thing but cigs and booze. FIL told the doctor he didn't "have the money" for medication. The doctor told us that WE needed to make sacrifices to help him! My BIL hit the roof! We have all tried to help him but he WILL NOT help himself. After we explained the situation and that HE is the one not doing what he should the doctor changed his tune. We have filled out paper work for him to get free medicine but he won't turn it in. We've taken him to doctor appts but then he won't go back for follow up. He lies to every one about the smallest things. He won't take the initiative to take care of himself. He would rather sit at deer camp & stay drunk all day. What are we supposed to do for him if he doesn't care about his health?


Asked by Mrs.B3 at 4:03 PM on Nov. 5, 2010 in Just for Fun

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Answers (10)
  • Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do. You can only help those that WANT to be helped.

    Answer by theutilitarian at 4:06 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • On top of not caring, he knew he felt bad the day before the stroke but didn't want to leave deer camp to go to the hospital. So he laid in the floor from 3am til the next morning when his sister in law forced him to go to the hospital. He must think it's a waste of time because he laughs when the doctor asks him if he'll quit smoking and drinking. He has fallen off our porch before and laughed about it! Now he has lost most of his vision and he can't use his left arm. I don't know what we are supposed to do now. He has lived with us and BIL and been asked to leave both places because he stays drunk and trashes the houses.

    Comment by Mrs.B3 (original poster) at 4:08 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • he may need a psychiatric evaluation. aside from the physical health issues, he doesn't sound like all his 'synapses are synapsing'..KWIM??

    Answer by dullscissors at 4:16 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • I don't know, he has been like this since I've met him almost 12 years ago. He puts his wants before his health. He doesn't care that he worries the heck out of his family by not taking care of himself. He was in prison on and off for years and SIL said it seems like that is the best place for him to be. At least when he was there he couldn't drink or smoke & he got regular health care.

    Comment by Mrs.B3 (original poster) at 4:23 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • Unfortunately, even if he did change for you it won't stick. If he doesn't want to change then he's not going to change. You have no control over that and there's nothing you can do about it. Again, Unfortunately that's just how it is. Nobody will change if they don't want to. I know it's hard watching him torture himself, but honestly that is his right to do so.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 5:53 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • I just find it very selfish of him. Knowing his kids hearts are breaking and not giving a damn.

    Comment by Mrs.B3 (original poster) at 5:55 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • There is nothing you can do. You just have to accept the situation for what it is. I know it's hard, I went through it with my Dad. He refused to quit smoking or go on a diet, said he was going to live life as he pleased. In a way I could see his point, it was HIS life and if you can't do what you find enjoyable than why bother? But yes it was selfish in a way because he died from it and I still miss him so very much. But I'm not angry with him, never was.

    Answer by SophiaofLight at 7:41 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • The reason me, DH and his siblings are upset is because FIL will say he'll do this or that. Then they make arrangements to get him there (he can't drive, no car) but he never follows through. Or he'll not tell any one he has an appointment and miss it, so he never gets his medicine. Then when he goes back to the hospital they are terrified he's going to die and they feel helpless. I understand him wanting to live the way he wants. He blows his money on beer and cigarettes & expects some one else to pick up the tab when he gets sick. It's pretty crappy.

    Comment by Mrs.B3 (original poster) at 9:31 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • I'm sorry but I believe you really can't help someone that won't help them self.

    Answer by gratefulangel77 at 9:49 PM on Nov. 5, 2010

  • Yeah, I just don't know what to say to get them to understand it's okay if they don't "fix" every thing for him.

    Comment by Mrs.B3 (original poster) at 9:56 PM on Nov. 5, 2010