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Nancy, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 746
Experience:  ABD for a PhD in Psychology, Psychotherapist for over 20 years
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I am 51 years old. My sister and I are dealing with our 82

Customer Question

I am 51 years old. My sister and I are dealing with our 82 yr. old father who has a Severe "Narcissistic Personality Disorder" He divorced his 3rd wife 2 years ago and is living is complete delusion and rapid decline. We have done everything including contacting social services for his area. He is currently losing everything including all his properties due to bad/irrational descisions. He is quite manipulative and has managed to get what he wants...until now. His anger is beginning to scare us and he is showing signs of physical aggressiveness. What do we do? We live 3 hours away.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Nancy replied 8 years ago.


Welcome to JustAnswer!

I am Nancy and I'd like to help. Could you please just clarify some things for me first?

With whom is he living right now?

What are the delusions?

What rapid decline is he experiencing?

Who is he being aggressive toward?


Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thank you so much :-)

He is living alone.

In the last 2 years he has pretty much alienated ALL friends and relatives (accept for my sister and myself)

My father, for all intents and purposes, has retired from the Hollywood Film Industry as a Production Designer I think since the age of 55-58. His other immediate family members were also in the industry, including my grandfather who was a character actor. I know for a fact that my grandmother was often verbally abusive and had a chemical imbalance.

Dad was always the "fun and exciting" parent, although EXTREMELY unpredictable as a personality. A drama queen to be sure, with rarely forethought on how he affects people with his sometimes twisted commentary.

He has been trying to continue living the "hollywood" dream (small "h") for years now (but he functions as if the industry is the same as when he was a viable participant) The poor guy can't even work a cell phone or pay his bills on time and yet he claims to be on the verge of some huge production) He always had the aspiration to be the director/producer (which he did have several opportunities to do) He fantasizes and over-states relationships he's had with past companies and famous coworkers. Always talking about the next big project he's working on, how this time "it's going to happen" etc. It never does because he always wants EVERYTHING the way he feels it should be. He is right and everyone else doesn't know what he or she is talking about. When he doesn't get what he wants he pretty much sabotages the relationship in some way. Everything is a "competition"

Over the years he has come in contact with many characters, some reputable, some not-so and sometimes bad deals happen due to his seemingly always desperation.

When everything including family relationships goes south, his misfortune is ALWAYS due to EVERYONE ELSE. Now, while also blaming his 3 wives (of which my sister and I are close) he has taken upon himself to be angry with the two of our husbands and us.

He recently played out a dangerous bet and took the couple of the million he had and poured it into 3-4 high-end properties, thinking that when this "next movie" gets made, he's going to cover all his costs and become a huge sensation.

Well...the bank is repossessing; he is losing EVERYTHING he ever worked hard for and REFUSES to face the reality. The police have been called to take him away from the association meetings in his complex because he goes in and rants and raves because of imagined injustices. He had to show up once at the police station for a sexual harassment complaint. He recently physically blocked my sister from leaving his home as she had come to help him, yelling profanities at her.

Dad never forgets anything, and constantly holds "his version" of the past over everyone's head. He can be extremely charming and then turn on a DIME! He rambles coherently, yet shifts focus constantly. He has always love the DRAMA of egging on and working the other person up until they are so mad they behave as badly as he does...that way he can say "see YOU'RE the problem" Of course now, we are out to get him, take his money, put him away...non of which is the truth and we have countless friends and family to back that up.

Lately he's been saying how he is "little ol' David" against the world. I think he really fantasizes this idea in his head. He is so intense now it is scary...ironically my sister and I feel like were experiencing the movie "The Shining" for real.

...His last home (which will probably be confiscated within the next month is a hug million dollar monstrosity. No one wants to go there because he has spent the last 2 years making it into a museum to his life in film...which at first seems cool, until you get sucked into a 3-hour tour of the same stories...many with crazy embellishments of grandeur.

He's now telling us he is eating out of cans, and it's our fault we are not helping him move out of his repossessed homes. That said, we know for a fact that he flew out back east a couple of weeks ago to scout locations for one of his "movies". So he is spending the money he has foolishly and hoping we'll just pick up the pieces.

We are getting calls weekly from people complaining. We have tried to reason with him. The social worker said, until something actually "happens" there is nothing that can be done legally because he is still functioning and would not go for any "evaluation" willingly. I know deep down he his afraid for the future and so are we. My sister and I often say, we would trade our Dad in for a "pennyless yet sweet and king old man" for this crazy person we know longer recognize.

you asked :-(
Thank you for any insite, we are at our wits end.
Expert:  Nancy replied 8 years ago.


Thanks for writing all that for me. It helps me to understand... You mention a social worker... how is she involved? And, if she is aware of the situation, why has she not intervened? I am also left wondering if it's possible that he has bipolar disorder... it sounds as if it could be, but without an evaluation right now, it would be hard to know. If you do get him in somewhere - make sure they check that out.

Just so you know, if he is found to have a mental illness, he maybe eligible for benefits because he will be mentally disabled. Check that out for your State.

I agree with the Social Worker... that until something happens, or if he refuses a voluntary evaluation, there is little you can do --- unless you trick him. I have seen people call the MD, tell them what's going on - bring Dad in for a "regular checkup" and have the MD evaluate their mental status without making a big deal of it. It may also halp you later - if eh declines even more. But you are 3 hours away... so if that's not possible... you may have to wait.

The good news, though - is that it sounds as if you are coming up on a natural intervention. You said they are about to take his house. Either you, your sister or the police will be responsible for moving him out. So - take advantage of this. Let him know what is going to be happening. Tell him he can go with you - taking what he wants, or putting it in storage - or the police will work on behalf of the bak and remove him, alone without his belongings (some of which I am sure he is quite attached).

Let him make that decision - he will most likely refuse to go willingly with you. If that's the case, you can either move his most loved belongings out for him (and keep them for him until... whenever). But at some point, the police will show up to move him out. When that happens, his mental status will be apparent and they will place him on a hold and he will get some help.

That certainly isn't the best way to go, or what to rely on - because if he gets violent, he could get hurt, or charges could be filed... so, you may have to just take advantage of the foreclosure - and move him out.

Even if you have to tell him that time is up NOW (even if he has a few more weeks), but just to get him out safely and into a new place while you all have access to the house.

If he cannot afford a new place- maybe you have to seel some of his blongings in order to move him, but either way, it sounds as though he needs a secure place to live - like a retirement village with other people his age, where they can administer and monitor medications, and where he can be social.

If I think of anything else, I'll write, but for now,work on getting the Social Worker involved in getting him to accept that he has to move, and finding a new place for him.


Customer: replied 8 years ago.
i did "fax" this to the social worker. She could not be reached today and it was suggested I fax.

I'll let you know what feedback I recieve.

Thank you again
Expert:  Nancy replied 8 years ago.

You are welcome.

I'll keep thinking.... if I come up with anything, I'll let you know.