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Worried about elderly neighbour - any advice?

  • #1
    Registered Users Posts: 5,013 ✭✭✭ sporina


    Hi all, I'm v worried about my elderly neighbour.. lives alone - don't have any family except for a daughter who lives in the UK - they are not in touch v often (had a 1 night stand with her Mum over 50 yrs ago)..
    I have seen him become more and more depressed over the last 6 mths.. staying in bed all day.. house is an awful mess.. not cooking - living on chocolate and pot noodles it seems.. he didn't have a GP till recently (his previous GP retired but I arranged to get him assigned a new GP)..

    He did see his GP a few weeks ago, but tells me he didn't tell him much. He tells me he has been hospitalised for depression in the past.
    I know he's not my responsibility - but he's a lovely man - hard to see him like this.

    Is there some way I can make a link between him and more services? I dunno..
    Its just a miserable way to live and he deserves better. He won't look for this help himself - don't think he's aware of how bad things are for him, or that there is help out there. He says its no use - he's hopeless.

    I dunno if I can call him GP? Also, I don't want him to think I am being a busy body. But gee - he can't live like this. Or at least, shouldn't have to.


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Comments



  • Maybe reach out to Alone for advice - I’m sure they know the right channels to approach with something like this and prob get queries like this all the time.

    Fair play to you for caring. Could you offer yourself to tidy up a bit for them also now and then? Or would they be too proud?




  • YellowLead wrote: »
    Maybe reach out to Alone for advice - I’m sure they know the right channels to approach with something like this and prob get queries like this all the time.

    Fair play to you for caring. Could you offer yourself to tidy up a bit for them also now and then? Or would they be too proud?

    thanks for that - will check out Alone..
    TBH I wouldn't know where to start in his hse.. its terrible - no judgement - he's clearly v depressed..

    I only befriended him over the last 14 mths or so... we use to pass each other most days when out walking (thats all I did when not working).. so we got chatting and the rest as they say is history..

    But from the looks of things he's been neglecting his hse for a long time - he buried his wife 6 yrs ago.. still heartbroken.. prob a downward spiral since then exacerbated by covid..

    Era, thanks - but its just my nature - hate to see anyone so sad n lonely.. and he's such a nice fella.. deserves better




  • Fair play Sporina, I don't have any advice but it's nice to see you're doing something for this man, a lot of men seem to end up in this situation and no one knows they exist or cares.




  • Fair play Sporina, I don't have any advice but it's nice to see you're doing something for this man, a lot of men seem to end up in this situation and no one knows they exist or cares.

    scary isn't it? so many people in the world yet so many alone




  • sporina wrote: »
    scary isn't it? so many people in the world yet so many alone

    Have him round for dinner and see if he opens up to you? Even if he doesn’t at least you know he’s a full stomach. Gives him a reason to get out of bed and make a bit of effort on himself.


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  • Don't invite him around or else he'll expect it all the time. Get him help via adequate services or else you will grow resentful soon.




  • Jequ0n wrote: »
    Don't invite him around or else he'll expect it all the time. Get him help via adequate services or else you will grow resentful soon.

    Well that ****e on my idea so.




  • Well that ****e on my idea so.


    I didn't mean it as an offense. But if the OP turns into the only graspable point of contact they are doomed with this old person




  • It may depend on how his situation is financially, but If he could afford it, could you suggest a housekeeper/cleaner who could come in a few hours a week and who also might cook some meals. It would also be someone to chat to. Also possibility of mens shed in the area. As a previous poster said Alone might be the best place to start.




  • Jequ0n wrote: »
    I didn't mean it as an offense. But if the OP turns into the only graspable point of contact they are doomed with this old person

    Well we don’t know that but I was messing, I took no offence :-)


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  • Could you consider contacting your local safeguarding team with regards a concern for his neglect of his health- see https://www.safeguardingireland.org/reporting/




  • Musefan wrote: »
    Could you consider contacting your local safeguarding team with regards a concern for his neglect of his health- see https://www.safeguardingireland.org/reporting/

    don't think it falls under that but that website did have some other sites listed that might be able to help - Age Action and Age Friendly Ireland - will call them and Alone tomorrow (although they don't seem to have a branch in Cork which is where we are)

    I might also call his GP - now that I think of it, his mental health seems to be in a v v bad way..




  • You could get in touch with the Public Health nurse for the area . Make her aware of a vulnerable elderly person in her catchment . Ask her to call to see him regarding his entitlements etc
    He might be entitled to home help or other help . She would be his contact for any day care facilities etc .
    You could also try Meals on Wheels and if they could help him with meals




  • iamwhoiam wrote: »
    You could get in touch with the Public Health nurse for the area . Make her aware of a vulnerable elderly person in her catchment . Ask her to call to see him regarding his entitlements etc
    He might be entitled to home help or other help . She would be his contact for any day care facilities etc .
    You could also try Meals on Wheels and if they could help him with meals

    Yeah PHN would be my first port of call, they might also link in with Community Psychiatric Nurse if he's known to their service.




  • Yeah PHN would be my first port of call, they might also link in with Community Psychiatric Nurse if he's known to their service.

    ok - i dunno who the PHN is for the area but I can ask his GP surely - he'll know - thanks




  • sporina wrote: »
    ok - i dunno who the PHN is for the area but I can ask his GP surely - he'll know - thanks

    You can phone the local health centre and ask who is the PHN for your address
    Tell them you need to get in touch about a vulnerable eldery person




  • iamwhoiam wrote: »
    You can phone the local health centre and ask who is the PHN for your address
    Tell them you need to get in touch about a vulnerable eldery person

    Made contact with the PHN for his area.. delighted - thanks everyone for all your help.. joint effort... and PS: feel ok about it all as I got his permission - I rang him in advance to ask him if it would be ok if I sourced a PHN for him - said yes.. (I used his sore feet as an excuse :pac: a good way for the PHN to get a foot in the door {pardon the pun} and establish/address all his needs without him knowing the full extent of my concerns {so no risk of offending him})




  • sporina wrote: »
    Made contact with the PHN for his area.. delighted - thanks everyone for all your help.. joint effort... and PS: feel ok about it all as I got his permission - I rang him in advance to ask him if it would be ok if I sourced a PHN for him - said yes.. (I used his sore feet as an excuse :pac: a good way for the PHN to get a foot in the door {pardon the pun} and establish/address all his needs without him knowing the full extent of my concerns {so no risk of offending him})

    Good news . She will be his best bet to guide him to finding help




  • sporina wrote: »
    Made contact with the PHN for his area.. delighted - thanks everyone for all your help.. joint effort... and PS: feel ok about it all as I got his permission - I rang him in advance to ask him if it would be ok if I sourced a PHN for him - said yes.. (I used his sore feet as an excuse :pac: a good way for the PHN to get a foot in the door {pardon the pun} and establish/address all his needs without him knowing the full extent of my concerns {so no risk of offending him})

    Just read this thread now and was going to suggest PHN. Just want to say well done for caring and sorting it out without offending.

    Have had some family experience of this in an elderly widower with no kids. Difference was, he was very resistant to any form of assistance.




  • SusanC10 wrote: »
    Just read this thread now and was going to suggest PHN. Just want to say well done for caring and sorting it out without offending.

    Have had some family experience of this in an elderly widower with no kids. Difference was, he was very resistant to any form of assistance.

    thanks - well thankfully he's not resisting help, but I am still threading carefully (with some creative thinking) - awe he's a lovely auld fella... not a bad bone in him i'd say... and he has no one.. well, a daughter in the UK - but dunno how much contact he has with her, if much at all - and covid not helping..

    hope your relative is doing ok


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  • Fair play OP, your involvement says a lot about you as a person. Many wouldn't be as kind and thoughtful.

    I know there's a balance and he's receptive to it at the moment but maybe at a late stage you could consider introducing him to The Men's Shed. It seems to me a very good idea and it gives people an opportunity to be involved, meet you people, get out of the house and reduce loneliness. Probably not possible until covid restrictions are lifted but he might meet a lot of others experiencing similar.




  • Fair play OP, your involvement says a lot about you as a person. Many wouldn't be as kind and thoughtful.

    I know there's a balance and he's receptive to it at the moment but maybe at a late stage you could consider introducing him to The Men's Shed. It seems to me a very good idea and it gives people an opportunity to be involved, meet you people, get out of the house and reduce loneliness. Probably not possible until covid restrictions are lifted but he might meet a lot of others experiencing similar.

    awe thanks - but like i said, its just how i'm made lol..

    yeah I mentioned men's shed to him before and he said he would be interested.. will definitely revisit that idea when he's a bit more together.. see what the PHN does for him 1st,. think he's too depressed atm...




  • Fair play Sporina.

    I know Covid is very serious but I do fear that there is a torrent of mental health issues coming down the line.

    Your story reminds me of man on 24 hours in A&E last night.

    He had his leg amputated a few years ago and lives alone but enjoyed being social and going out for a pint.

    During lockdown he has lost 3 stone( skin and bone now) because he lost his appetite and had become very withdrawn and stopped going out. He was probably one of those pensioners that got his dinner daily when out and about.

    Thankfully at end of programme he was able to go for a pint again, but he still wouldn't be able if he lived in Ireland.

    There is no point people surviving Covid if they end up shells of their former self due to their mental health and no one seems to be paying any attention to it in government.




  • What about meals on wheels they would call every day with a meal anda cheery hello or home help? All these poor devils need is a few words of chat a newspaper and a hot meal to make them feel better. A nice gentle home help person would go a long way.





  • Honestly, I'm touched by your story and commend your compassion and care for this clearly vulnerable gentleman. Alone will certainly be able to offer guidance. I just wondered would it be an idea to see if the local Garda station have a community garda, they did trojan work during the pandemic, they could call on your neighbor and use complete discretion.

    It's hard enough to to help a family member in difficulty so I can imagine how difficult this situation is.

    I wish you both well, I'm sure assistance will be offered.

    Is maith an scáthán súil charad.







  • If you still think he needs help there are local Primary Care Social Workers in every catchment area who can help with the lifestyle issues, coping skills and with practical supports. Details on HSE website.


    Well done for being such an advocate for your neighbour and for being so kind.





  • Don't invite him to your place or he'll expect it all the time. Get him help through the appropriate services or you will soon become angry.



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  • If there's a men's shed in the area, it could be a good social outlet.

    https://menssheds.ie/



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