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A little help and advice please - Mental health related

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A little help and advice please - Mental health related

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D3lphine3D3lphine3 Forumite
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Hi,

Basically my mum is Bipolar and has been seriously taken advantage of by a group of people, to the tune of around £40k (£35k in money, an Audi TT and several mobile contacts)

What can be done to try and get the money/property back?

I'm guessing that they have obtained it by deception because they have taken advantage of someone that is vulnerable.

We tried to tell her that they were using her but as she was on a high, she wouldn't listen to us. Every time we tried to intervene she got violent and called the police.
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  • If you contact the police they can put you in touch with the Vulnerable Adults Officer - they will be able to talk you through your options (if any). However, it is possible that is had capacity at the time they will take no action - and being manic rarely leads to a loss of capacity in the legal sense.
  • Thanks, I am planning on contacting the police but just wanted to know where I stood before hand.
  • pearl123pearl123 Forumite
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    I'd also get her to go back to her doctor or you contact her doctor. They perhaps should look into her medication again? She is vunerable and she should be having support from the mental health services, so that this does not happen to her.
  • Her doctor has been as much help as a chocolate tea pot!

    She was section back in the summer and was treated for psychosis as well as Bipolar but she has had no help since she was released.

    She has now become depressed and still no one is interested in helping her.
  • RadoJoRadoJo Forumite
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    Is this group of people acting in any official capacity (e.g a support group or similar) or are they just 'friends' who have taken advantage of her mood swings? To be honest, if she is not considered unfit to manage her own affairs then there's probably not much you can do. In what way was her GP useless? Was it just that they were unable to help without seeing her, or that they do not agree with your assessment that she is unable to be responsible for managing her own finances etc?
  • edited 22 October 2011 at 11:49PM
    pearl123pearl123 Forumite
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    edited 22 October 2011 at 11:49PM
    From everything you've said the only real solution I can see is getting her referred back to mental health teams. If her own doctor is no good then tried to speak to others within the practice. Or if you still have contact with her mental health workers give them a call. I suggest you do this asap.
    If you hang on then your Mothers problems will just increase. She will loose perhaps more money or perhaps other major issues could arise because of her lack of judgement. Because of your Mum mental health problems she is not in a position perhaps to realise she is ill or to find help herself. Her family/friends should then refer her back for an mental health assesment.

    Also why is your mum on a high? Is she is taking her medication? Or is her medication now inaffective?
    Also if you own mum is calling the Police when you intervene obviously she's not stable. Sort the medication and you should sort some of the problems. Also are people taking advantage of her or is she giving her money away? People who are severely mentally ill can convince themselves of all sort of things and therefore she might think that it is very correct to give her money away, as opposed to it being stolen.

    Surely, you must see that she need to be referred back to the mental health teams? Also do you have proof that criminals have stolen from your mum or is it something that she is saying that has happened?

    I would also suggest you try the forums on carers uk and carers org. They are more experienced and could give a variety of suggestions in a way of help.
    Best of luck - dealing with a member of the family with mental health issues is not easy and is frequently ongoing.
  • Thanks for your replies, Will try to answer questions :)

    Basically my mum decided to convert to being a Muslim, before that she was Catholic, Anglican, COE. The religion keeps changing! It is these new found Muslim friends that have been putting idea into her head, such as buying property in Kurdistan. Once she gets an idea into her head you cannot do anything.

    She bought an old Rover for £1800, after seeing it on ebay and got it into her head it was gonig to be great as a wedding car etc. It's not sat rusting in the lane leading to my step dads house

    She is a kind of property developer, by that I mean she buys lots of houses when she is high but then neglects them. Me and my step dad are trying to keep everything running for her as she is very close to going bankrupt.

    Her solicitor doesn't think she is fit to handle her affairs anymore but we are unable to do anything whilst she is high because she thinks we are going to rip her off.

    Her main GP doesn't seem to want to accept that there is anything wrong, we have spoken to him many times and he doesn't do anything. She was seen by another GP at the same surgery who referred her to a Psychiatrist - This is when she was diagnosed with Bipolar.

    She isn't taking any medication, we don't know what she was prescribed when she was sectioned, but we do know she won't have been taking it since she was released. The mental health teams have been no help, we've been ringing her Social Worker on a regular basis to try and get them to do something but they haven't.

    We know exactly how much has been giving away, the money hasn't been stolen as she's been manipulated into giving it to them.

    Thanks for those other forums, I will pop over to them and see what they say :)
    xx
  • edited 23 October 2011 at 5:55PM
    GingernuttyGingernutty Forumite
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    edited 23 October 2011 at 5:55PM
    D3lphine3 wrote: »
    Her solicitor doesn't think she is fit to handle her affairs anymore but we are unable to do anything whilst she is high because she thinks we are going to rip her off.

    You seem to know a lot about her income and outgoings. If her own solicitor doesn't think she's capable then broach the subject of Deputyship of the Public Guardianship. The co-operation of your Mum doesn't enter into it. If, legally, she is said to be of unsound mind, then you can take control.

    It's a fairly convoluted process and it's certainly not easy - but it's worth having a long talk with someone who understands the family situation and who might help.
    D3lphine3 wrote: »
    Her main GP doesn't seem to want to accept that there is anything wrong, we have spoken to him many times and he doesn't do anything. She was seen by another GP at the same surgery who referred her to a Psychiatrist - This is when she was diagnosed with Bipolar.

    Of course, getting seen by a doctor who knows about mental illness is crucial to getting a Deputyship order. The Psychiatrist will be the useful one there.
    D3lphine3 wrote: »
    She isn't taking any medication, we don't know what she was prescribed when she was sectioned, but we do know she won't have been taking it since she was released.

    Yep. It's called 'insight'. If your mother does not accept that she has this condition then she won't take the tablets to keep her stable. It's infuriating. :mad:

    The only time she will be told she is ill is when she is sectioned (either manic or depressed) and in no fit state to take on board any information about her complex needs.

    Once released, she'll feel fine and think she's 'cured' (if she ever thought of herself as ill in the first place) and will refuse to take the tablets - after all, she's 'fine' now - medication can only be 'forced' on her under section. Catch 22, right there.
    D3lphine3 wrote: »
    The mental health teams have been no help, we've been ringing her Social Worker on a regular basis to try and get them to do something but they haven't.

    They are snowed under by people who are threatening suicide/to kill people - someone like your mum who, albeit vulnerable, is not a physical danger to themselves or others are not a priority.
    D3lphine3 wrote: »
    We know exactly how much has been giving away, the money hasn't been stolen as she's been manipulated into giving it to them.

    That must be so frustrating. When Mum died, we found handwritten receipts for dodgy sounding 'charities' and begging letters from people who we had thought of as family friends - she gave away thousands of pounds almost bankrupting the family business in the process. The Vulnerable Adults Officer is a must - any paper trail will be useful too.

    It sounds as if the steps you have to take are legal and not medical. I don't envy you. Good luck. :)
    :huh: Don't know what I'm doing, but doing it anyway... :huh:
  • pearl123pearl123 Forumite
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    D3lphine.. If at first you don't get a solution from your doctors then, try, try and try again. I understand your frustration only too well. The solution to your problems is getting your Mum referred back for a mental health assesment. Keep pushing for it. I know what it like when they doctors don't listen but one will eventually if you persist and present the problems you are having clearly.
    When you do get your mum eventually referred back. Try and make sure that you are included in the whole process so that you know not only what going on but what medication she's supposed to take etc.
    I nearly gave up when trying to get help for my mum - I'd been trying for years to get a doctor to take notice of what I was saying but a friend made me persist and eventually my mum got the treatment she needed. My mum was also sectioned.
    If your mum is referred back it does not necessarily mean that she will be sectioned again. It just means that they will re-assess her, give her more support and see what her needs are. If you can be with her threw this process it would be better, otherwise she will be able to frob of the mental health services. Don't give up - keep trying with the doctors. I hope also the other forums can give concrete advise.
    Best of luck... I know what hard work it is!
  • You seem to know a lot about her income and outgoings. If her own solicitor doesn't think she's capable then broach the subject of Deputyship of the Public Guardianship. The co-operation of your Mum doesn't enter into it. If, legally, she is said to be of unsound mind, then you can take control.

    My Step dad has got joint properties with her at the moment, so he has to try and keep an eye on her incomings and outgoings because it could lead to problems for him if she was to go bankrupt.

    I've not heard of Deputyship of the Public Guardianship before so I will look into that


    It's a fairly convoluted process and it's certainly not easy - but it's worth having a long talk with someone who understands the family situation and who might help.



    Of course, getting seen by a doctor who knows about mental illness is crucial to getting a Deputyship order. The Psychiatrist will be the useful one there.



    Yep. It's called 'insight'. If your mother does not accept that she has this condition then she won't take the tablets to keep her stable. It's infuriating. :mad:

    The only time she will be told she is ill is when she is sectioned (either manic or depressed) and in no fit state to take on board any information about her complex needs.

    Once released, she'll feel fine and think she's 'cured' (if she ever thought of herself as ill in the first place) and will refuse to take the tablets - after all, she's 'fine' now - medication can only be 'forced' on her under section. Catch 22, right there.

    When she is in the Depressive state, which we think she is starting to go into, she acknowledges that she is Bipolar and regrets everything that she has done. During this time she is willing to seek treatment but she can switch back within days, in some cases even hours.



    They are snowed under by people who are threatening suicide/to kill people - someone like your mum who, albeit vulnerable, is not a physical danger to themselves or others are not a priority.

    We've noticed it varies with jurisdiction, she has been sectioned twice for short periods, once by the Welsh mental health team and the other by the West Midlands. But nothing when she's in Bristol


    That must be so frustrating. When Mum died, we found handwritten receipts for dodgy sounding 'charities' and begging letters from people who we had thought of as family friends - she gave away thousands of pounds almost bankrupting the family business in the process. The Vulnerable Adults Officer is a must - any paper trail will be useful too.

    I'll be contacting the Vulnerable Adults Officer in the morning, We've been trying to get as much stuff together as we possibly can so we have a better idea of what's what

    It sounds as if the steps you have to take are legal and not medical. I don't envy you. Good luck. :)

    Thanks, I think I'm going to need it:eek:
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