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Bill
Bill, LCSW, Consultant, Expert Witness
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 3705
Experience:  35 years treating individuals, couples, families with mental health and substance abuse prob's
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My brother is retired Military. Our Mother passed away in June.

Customer Question

My brother is retired Military. Our Mother passed away in June. Our family has noticed that he has had a drinking problem and that he carries a lot of pain pills around with him. He says the VA hospital has given them to him for PTSD and for a recent shoulder surgery he had (6 months ago). Going over estate information for my mother he got very aggitated and slapped my sister so hard in the face he bruised her cheek. He had 4 sisters and we are not only very concerned for him we are also scared of him now because of this incident. Can you give us any advise?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Bill replied 2 years ago.

Bill :

Hello- Thank you for asking the question. I have over 30 years of experience working with individuals, couples and families & am happy to reply.

Bill :

I am sorry to hear about this incident and the loss of your mother.

Bill :

People with PTSD have difficulty controlling emotions and are often subject to acting out anger. This is not to excuse the behavior but to let you know that this is one of the manifestations of the illness, particularly if they become agitated.

Bill :

Adding pain medication and drinking to the mix does not make things better as one who is taking pain med's should not be drinking.

Customer:

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX a heart attack. she had a bypass she lived for 6 more weeks but passed from congestive heart failure

Bill :

I'm sorry to hear that.

Bill :

Is your brother getting any form of counseling for the PTSD?

Customer:

I know he should not be drinking and taking those meds.

Customer:

We think he is getting counseling from the VA

Bill :

Does he feel remorse for his behavior?

Customer:

He has been telling everyone that he is getting a divorce and his wife is taking pills and spending money but since we have all been around him we feel that maybe it has been him

Customer:

He is from DE and after the funeral he went back to FL to stay with our father

Customer:

because he said he was getting a divorce

Bill :

That is probably a good thing that he has gone to be with his father.

Bill :

He will need to get more assistance from the VA than he is getting. First, the drinking problem has to be brought under control before he will be able to address the issues of rage and anger. n

Customer:

He said he was going to go stay with dad and take care of the life insurance for dad and any other things that needed done. My father has told us that he has borrowed money and not taken care of anything

Bill :

This doesn't surprise me because he is essentially "out of control" and the drinking and medication are probably the major priorities in his daily life.

Customer:

My father has short term memory loss and beginning stages of dementia and diabetes. When I was down there before the fight between the sisters I took my dad to the doctors and they said his health was not good because he was not eating well

Bill :

I am giving you a link that addresses how family members can deal with PTSD

Bill :

In what city in Florida does Dad live?

Customer:

He is not going to go on his own. Is there anyone that we can contact to help him

Bill :

where in Florida is he living?

Customer:

My father lives in Pasco county, my brother just left to go back to DE. He said his duties are done.

Bill :

There is not much you will be able to do unless he is willing. IF you know the counselor he sees at the VA you might try letting them know what is happening.

Bill :

You can't enable his behavior and I would tell him that as long as he is leading this out of control lifestyle, you can not engage contact with him.

Customer:

You mean no one can help us get him help at the VA unless we know his doctors name?

Bill :

No, I would contact the VA where he is being seen and see if they can assist with an intervention.

Bill :

Where is he being treated?

Customer:

VA in Wilmington DE

Bill :

Okay. Do you know the name of the DR. that performed the Surgery on his shoulder?

Bill :

Here is a link to the VA substance abuse intervention service.

Customer:

no I do not know. We are not that close. We noticed that he may have a problem with the pills in May when he had to go in the hospital when he had stomach problems and he had an argument with a nurse when she caught him taking pills out of his backpack after she had just gave him pills. He cussed her out and it was very ugly.It was when he was checking out of the hospital so nothing was done.

Bill :

Contact them 24-7 and explain the problem and seek their guidance on how to intervene. He has to be getting the drugs from the VA and they need know that he is abusing them. They will help you track down someone that will get the message to the doctor or counselor.

Customer:

thank you for your help. He hit my sister for no reason. I just hope he has not hit his wife or daughter.

Bill :

You are welcome. Here is the contact info for Wilmington:

Bill :

Wilmington VA Medical Center


1601 Kirkwood Highway
Wilmington, DE 19805
302-994-2511 |(NNN) NNN-NNNN


 

Bill :

Call the 800 number and they will help you.

Bill :

I wish you the very best at this difficult time.

Bill :

Bill

Bill :

PLEASE CLICK ACCEPT & I appreciate positive feedback

Customer:

thank you for all the numbers you helped me with. I hope to get him some help.

Bill :

you will have a copy of this email transcript in email. You are welcome.

Bill, LCSW, Consultant, Expert Witness
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 3705
Experience: 35 years treating individuals, couples, families with mental health and substance abuse prob's
Bill and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
called the #s you gave me. Unless my brother wants help no one will help him.

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