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November 17, 2018 - Welcome Guest!

Advice » Relationships

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My Mom is out of control


I am 26 yrs old and I need to know how to deal with my mother. She is on drugs and is paranoid and often hallucinates. As a result she has accused me of coming in her house and going through her stuff. This is not true. She has accused my 10-year-old brother of stealing her keys, having copies made, and handing them out to strangers, homeless people, and me so that we can come in her house.

She has told several people in the family that people have come into her house while she was there and that they were going through her stuff. When asked why she did not call the police she just said she waited for them to leave. She has threatend to kill her neighbor, herself, my brother, and myself on a number of occasions. Then after making these statements she will say that she is just playing.

She has also told me on several occasions that she has nothing to lose. I don't trust her and her actions have made me afraid. I believe that she may hurt me or someone else and I am at the point that I am so afraid of her that I may hurt her if she approaches me incorrectly. She calls me often to verbally abuse me and belittle me on the telephone. Then she will call the next day like nothing has ever happened.

She blames me for her problems and speaks of death, doom, and danger over my family. I have my 10 year old brother which is her child but the only interest I believe that she really has with him at this point is torment him and to call my house and torment me. Please help me and tell me what I should do.

I need to know what to do to keep my family and myself safe mentally and physically in this situation.

Tormented (26 year-old woman)


Dear Tormented,

You sound conflicted about lots of things when it comes to your mother, except for one: that you want your brother to be safe. You might need to call in some law enforcement authorities (yes, the police) to report your mother's strange behavior if you think your brother's at risk by being with her. (If she has actually "spoken death" like you say, you definitely have grounds to call in the law). Then she can be evaluated by professional mental health officials, and get proper treatment. Remember, telling on your mother is not a punitive act on your part, but rather one done for the safety of your minor brother. If you think calling the police is too extreme, report your mother to your state's department of children's services, and they will intercede. You can even do that anonymously. Don't wait!

As for yourself: even though you are 26, you probably still need guidance on how to handle your ill mother, and all your feelings in the matter, so of course, I recommend seeing a counselor. Your brother will no doubt need help too.

But before that, make sure your mother gets the intervention she needs, so you can rest knowing your brother is safe. Even though it might seem like you are breaking your family apart by reporting your mother, in the big picture, you will be doing the right thing for your family by doing so. Good Luck.


Andy Bernay-Roman

This question was answered by Andy Bernay-Roman, RN, MS, LMHC, NCC, LMT. He is a nationally certified counselor in private psychotherapy practice in South Florida working with individuals, couples, and families with a deep-feeling therapy approach. Andy's medical background as an ICU nurse contributes to his success with clients with difficult medical diagnoses and/or chronic physical conditions. He also serves as head of the Psychological Support Department of West Palm Beach's Hippocrates Health Institute.

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