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Something’s not right

New Contributor

Delusional ? Hallucinating ?

I’m really worried about my mother and don’t know where to turn. She’s had excema for a long time and she’s constantly picking at herself and rubbing creams and things but over the last 3 weeks she has started to show me things like pieces of cotton, string, tissue, and even plastic has been coming out of her skin. She tells me watch and she’ll show me and I can sit there for hours while she rubs her skin but nothing ever comes out. It’s just always the same thing. I try to explain to her that these things are cotton and tissue that she’s showing me and she gets so angry that I can’t see that they’re coming out of her skin. This behavior is now constant. She does nothing else but rub her skin and if I try to get her to stop she gets really angry. She refuses to see a psychiatrist. What can I do ?


Re: Delusional ? Hallucinating ?

Dear @Annise , that sounds very distressing.  For both you and no doubt also your mother.  Can I ask how old your Mum is, and whether its possible she could be suffering from some form of dementia?  Has she ever previously displayed any form of mental illness or been diagnosed and or treated with a mental illness?  Sorry for all the questions .. I am just trying to get a bit of a picture as to possibilities.  A bit more information may also assist other likely responders to your initial post.


Oh .... and please accept my very warm welcome to the Sane forums.  Its lovely to have you here.  I hope we can find some possible answers for you here.  But please bear in mind that none of us here are mental health professionals, and there is no substitute for proper assessment by either your Mums GP or a MH professional, either psychiatrist or psychologist.  I would continue to encourage your Mum to see your GP in the first instance, and go with her if possible so you can explain whats going on.  Her GP will then refer her to another professional if they consider it necessary.


Good luck.



Re: Delusional ? Hallucinating ?

Hi Sherry, thanks so much for your reply. She’s always suffered from anxiety, specifically social anxiety. She has regular doctor appointments but she never says any of this to the doctor so I feel she is aware that it’s not right and she’s afraid they’ll say she has psychiatric problems. I’ve never experienced this before. I’m so confused.

Re: Delusional ? Hallucinating ?

@Annise  Hi Annise and welcome to the forums. Just like @Sherry  we are not medical experts here but somethings have sprung to mind which I have read about with older people and delusional behaviour. A change of medication or simply a uti infection can cause these sorts of behaviours. If she is on medication is she taking the correct dose? Older people can get confused re whether or not they have taken their meds.


Just a quiet word to her gp about what has been happening wouldn't hurt as gps' would have seen it all before. I hope this has helped. Please keep in touch and let us know how it all goes. greenpea 


pe: if you want to talk to someone directly put a @in front of their name like I did for you and they will be notified of yoru post Smiley Happy

Re: Delusional ? Hallucinating ?

Hi @Annise 

Is it possible for you to make an appointment with your mum's doctor? You could then talk about your own anxieties and mention your mum who also happens to be a patient. An alternative is to write to the doctor. Make it clear that you're providing information in confidence and not asking for confidential information. I've had to do that with my son because the doctors and psychs didn't seem to know the full story. The approach worked a few times and sometimes didn't work.


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