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Help me! My parents are in denial!!!

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  1. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Tue Sep 26 2017 14:08:07
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    My elderly parents are in denial over their bedbug infestation. This is the second infestation they have had.

    I have barred them from coming over or riding in my car.

    They didn’t want to have to consider spending any money on this!

    We have been in a stalemate. I talked to them today and my father claims thye are all gone “since he’s been spraying”.

    They want things to go back to normal.

    Am I wrong for needing to keep my children and home safe? They are making me feel like a terrible person.

    Also I KNOW this cannot be rectified with some spray.

    I had been there bout a month ago and saw the live bugs so I know what’s going on.

    I have to go back I guess and show them flat out what’s going on. I have a heat company lined up to do the job.

    I am hyperventilating...

  2. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Fri Oct 13 2017 9:05:45
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    Hoping to bump this to the top, i need help friends.

    My elderly parents are in complete denial.

    They claim the bugs are gone, they are not.

    We have had no real interaction for months. They are not allowed to come to my house, they cannot sit in my car, my children cannot go in their car.

    They have come to a place where it’s easier to forego interaction than get treatment.
    It’s like a plateau of comfort.

    I have contacted many pros and have a few lined up.

    They will not agree.

    I am at my whits end.

    What do I do!?!

  3. BigDummy

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Fri Oct 13 2017 9:41:24
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    I'm not sure how fragile the relationship is at this point but is it possible to explain their circumstances to a PCO and both of you speak to your parents in person?

    Killer of bed bugs for Homeless Empowerment Program
  4. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Wed Oct 18 2017 15:29:27
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    They are not affected at all by the bugs. So in their mind there IS no problem. They go about their day like nothing is wrong and the bites don’t bother them. Our relationship is fine because there is NO PROBLEM, you see. But paying for a PCO will negatively effect them, so they would rather ignore than pay.

    Denial.

  5. BigDummy

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Oct 19 2017 10:22:20
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    Prior to WWII bed bugs were a real presence; and your parent's aren't incorrect, we've lived alongside bed bugs without issue for a very long time.
    Maybe the approach you take is that while the bugs do not negatively affect your parents bed bugs are generally seen as a pest, and they are quite hard to get rid of when compared to other insects. So while they may not be bothered by such a minor inconvenience as bed bugs are to them, others view bed bugs as a far more serious issue, which can be costly to remove and which can cause some fairly nasty psychological damage. Your parents may well be immune to these effects, but the people that they are exposing to bed bugs may not share the same view.

  6. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Oct 19 2017 13:16:31
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    Big dummy you are so nice! Maybe this site is more for me to vent than anything. Why, should they do anything? They don’t think they are a big deal. They cannot be convinced otherwise. I can not force them to do anything. I cannot tell them they are spreading a public health hazard around because in their minds the bugs aren’t an issue.

    The ONLY problem is me. I don’t let them near my house or car. My mother wasn’t invited to lunch today with my mother in law because I won’t have her in my car. She even said “ I guess I can’t go to lunch any more with you guys”. All they see is me leaving them out of things due to my irrational fears.

  7. thirdusername

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    Posted 4 months ago
    Thu Oct 19 2017 22:27:02
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    I sympathize with you Mizlizkitty,
    I have a similar but opposite problem.
    I have bed bugs and am being treated Monday.
    I am worried that if I don't feel they are gone before xmas, I'll have to stay here (I usually travel and stay at my parents, it is too far for a day trip).
    I don't want to isolate myself but I don't want to feel responsible for spreading them.

    I am NOT an expert.
    My opinions are just opinions, they may NOT apply to yours or any situation.
    My advice is to always do a LOT of research.
    A lot of what I read contradicts other stuff on the Interweb.
  8. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Mon Oct 30 2017 11:44:10
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    Update. My mother had a medical issue and has been hospitalized the past week. I pretty much laid into my father for delaying and denying issues, I made him agree thta I found any bug so he’d have to call a PCO. Well I went over today and lo and behold, a small nest in my mothers bed, and black fecal matter staining my adult brother’s bed. Horrifying and sickening. This has FORCED him to act.

    He is visiting my mother in the Hospital and I am worried about him bringing them there too, I monitor the area he sits very closely. Granted I doubt he is the first person with bedbugs ever to linger in a NYC Hosptal.

    Long term I worry about their judgment and safety. But that’s for the aging care forum!

  9. BuggingForInformation

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Sun Nov 12 2017 3:43:34
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    For whatever reason, the elderly do not get reactions to bed bugs (meaning bites). Also, if they are blind.

    I would send them somewhere (like a walk in the park) and then heat treat their apartment, and tell them afterwards.

  10. thirdusername

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Sun Nov 12 2017 15:17:00
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    Can you afford to pay for treatment for your parents?
    Maybe they worry it'll cost too much.
    If they get reinfected, they don't seem able to detect bed bugs.

  11. BigDummy

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Mon Nov 13 2017 9:44:49
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    BuggingForInformation - 1 day ago  » 
    For whatever reason, the elderly do not get reactions to bed bugs (meaning bites). Also, if they are blind.
    I would send them somewhere (like a walk in the park) and then heat treat their apartment, and tell them afterwards.

    That would be an epic trek to keep someone away long enough for a heat treatment.
    Can you provide any documentation on the blind and elderly not reacting to bed bugs? Not sure how an optical problem can influence skin.

  12. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Thu Nov 16 2017 12:37:59
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    3 months from my discovery in August and still no action.

    I have offered to at least FRONT the money for the treatment then they can pay me back in time. They are like.. “well, we’ll see”.

    They have Zero interest in resolving this. We all go on with our lives normally except we have no physical interaction.

    The ONLY thing I’m waiting for is their tenant to start getting bit. I have been warning them that this may happen then their hands will be forced.

    They are your kick the can down the road variety people.

  13. loubugs

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Thu Nov 16 2017 18:41:04
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    BigDummy - 3 days ago  » 

    BuggingForInformation - 1 day ago  » 
    For whatever reason, the elderly do not get reactions to bed bugs (meaning bites). Also, if they are blind.
    I would send them somewhere (like a walk in the park) and then heat treat their apartment, and tell them afterwards.

    That would be an epic trek to keep someone away long enough for a heat treatment.
    Can you provide any documentation on the blind and elderly not reacting to bed bugs? Not sure how an optical problem can influence skin.

    Not all elderly people are like this; some may react to bed bug saliva. It appears that in some cases the immune system of elderly doesn't react to certain stimuli, sort of a low response. But in some younger people there can also be a low response. I have a very low response and have had for over 25 years since rearing them. Blind people can react. The problem here not experiencing a bite reaction in blind people, but that they can't see the bed bugs and don't realize they have a problem. Itching from what are bed bug bites might be ascribed to something else such as mosquito or flea bites. There might be skin lesions and no itching, but these lesions aren't seen and therefore aren't correctly identified.

    Professional entomologist/arachnologist. I consult on all matters dealing with insects and arachnids, including those of natural history and biology to pest management and forensic entomology investigations.
  14. loubugs

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Thu Nov 16 2017 18:45:06
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    Mizlizkitty - 6 hours ago  » 
    3 months from my discovery in August and still no action.
    I have offered to at least FRONT the money for the treatment then they can pay me back in time. They are like.. “well, we’ll see”.
    They have Zero interest in resolving this. We all go on with our lives normally except we have no physical interaction.
    The ONLY thing I’m waiting for is their tenant to start getting bit. I have been warning them that this may happen then their hands will be forced.
    They are your kick the can down the road variety people.

    There's the possibility that the tenant will complain and might complain to agencies that will force your parents to comply and/or face fines. Your parents are also losing you and other relatives and friends and will be forced into isolation because people don't want to get bed bugs from their visitations.

  15. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 3 months ago
    Thu Nov 16 2017 19:27:21
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    Thank you. I am clear headed and motivated, but lack any authority, legal or emotional to get them to comply. I wait. They have accepted my isolation. It’s better than dealing with the bugs as far as they’re concerned which is sad.

  16. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 2 months ago
    Wed Nov 29 2017 21:10:37
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    Things are still very sad. I am having lunch with my mother in law tomorrow and my mother recognizes she isn’t invited. She said “I guess I’m out now, with these bugs”. I told her “yes, I don’t know why we haven’t done anything about this”. She just said the conversation was over and hung up.

    I have a PCO on standby waiting for the word of ok. Remember I have to move three uncooperative adults out of their home including preparing all their clothes. They are utterly refusing to do anything. I have even offered to lend them the money until they can pay back. Nothing.

    I have harangued, yelled, begged, cried, offered to PAY even. NOTHING.

    I have never ready anything online about people not wanting to get bed bugs eradicated. It’s just not sane!

    I am goign through a lot of psychological pain not being able to help. I’m at the point of just distancing myself to make things more comfortable.

    We are at such a low sad point. Not being able to get together. The holidays are here and we can’t do things together. And I am being made the bad guy.

  17. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 2 months ago
    Wed Nov 29 2017 21:15:42
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    She just called me back to say “I guess you just don’t want us around anymore”. Help me friends!

  18. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 2 months ago
    Thu Nov 30 2017 0:52:58
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    I don’t think you’re the first who has experienced something like this and mentioned it here. It’s unusual but happens. You can do things together but they need to be managed differently. Everyone has to be on board and cooperate. It may be helpful to have a family therapist involved or even better, one who specializes in elders. This is not unlike other situations where elders are resistant to change.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  19. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 2 months ago
    Thu Nov 30 2017 7:16:14
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    Thankyou for the reassurance. I’m going to stay positive, repeating that I am there to help and avoid laying blame. It’s so black and white to me- have bugs, try to get Rid of them.

  20. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Tue Jan 2 2018 10:13:33
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    So a new year comes and there is still no movement on this issue. We have all come to a silent agreement to live our lives. They go to the doctors, the store, other peoples houses, my. Mother was hospitalized for 4 days and my father came daily to see her.

    NOTHING has changed, they do not listen, they do not care.

    Sadly I have no hope of anything changing. This has been a known issue since August so 4-5 months.

    This has made me very sad that our lives have to be this way.

  21. loubugs

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Tue Jan 2 2018 12:29:51
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    Do their neighbors have bed bugs? They could be the source. Conversely, neighbors could be the source. Yes, they can certainly bring to doctor's offices, hospital waiting rooms and visa versa. Too bad they don't listen to reason.

  22. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Tue Jan 2 2018 13:04:16
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    loubugs - 32 minutes ago  » 
    Do their neighbors have bed bugs? They could be the source. Conversely, neighbors could be the source. Yes, they can certainly bring to doctor's offices, hospital waiting rooms and visa versa. Too bad they don't listen to reason.

    Lou,

    Thank you, they live in a fully paid for, detached home they own. There is no landlord to harass, no neighbors to blame. No one to call for help. I live in the city of NY. They will not do anything to help homeowners in any way shape or form. This problem is theirs.

  23. loubugs

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Tue Jan 2 2018 13:48:30
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    Mizlizkitty - 43 minutes ago  » 

    loubugs - 32 minutes ago  » 
    Do their neighbors have bed bugs? They could be the source. Conversely, neighbors could be the source. Yes, they can certainly bring to doctor's offices, hospital waiting rooms and visa versa. Too bad they don't listen to reason.

    Lou,
    Thank you, they live in a fully paid for, detached home they own. There is no landlord to harass, no neighbors to blame. No one to call for help. I live in the city of NY. They will not do anything to help homeowners in any way shape or form. This problem is theirs.

    No health aides? Too bad they are isolating themselves.

  24. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Tue Jan 2 2018 13:55:32
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    At this point they still manage to get around OK, even thought they are pushing 90. They don’t necessarily need the health aides. Apart \from the bugs i have been trying to get them to make some changes or plans for the inevitable. They will not even sign a health care proxy form for me to make any decisions. And mind you i am a rock for them for help. They know im upset and angry and these bugs have driven a wedge into our lives. Thank you for listening to my vent, Lou.

  25. thirdusername

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Tue Jan 2 2018 21:32:59
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    Mizlizkitty,
    I sympathize with you.
    Maybe your parents had them when they were younger so they think it is normal.
    Maybe someone they know has them.

  26. loubugs

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Wed Jan 3 2018 14:29:52
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    thirdusername - 16 hours ago  » 
    Mizlizkitty,
    I sympathize with you.
    Maybe your parents had them when they were younger so they think it is normal.
    Maybe someone they know has them.

    Possible they feel embarrassed and shame about having an infestation?

  27. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Wed Jan 3 2018 19:36:03
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    I am not an expert on elder care, but as I understand it, the elderly can be ruled incompetent if they make poor decisions that can harm themselves or others. This can lead to others (you or some other person) being charged with making their decisions.

    (I want to stress that I am am not saying you should try to get them ruled as such, but that they may find it some incentive for seeking help.)

    Depending on their housing situation, as Lou noted above, refusing treatment can lead to fines, or even being ousted from one's housing.

    A family therapist or social worker may be a good resource for you in trying to help them seek help. (Such a person could lay out the above scenarios, too, helping provide a wake-up call.)

  28. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Thu Jan 4 2018 9:28:58
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    Thank you friends. I am still trying to get them to be reasonable and in charge of their own decisions. I am scared of the time that they can no longer make those decisions. Its hard as you know to see your parents grow old and lose control of their lives.

  29. BigDummy

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    Thu Jan 4 2018 15:40:09
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    Maybe it's time you cave a little and go for a visit. Take precautions with a change of clothes that you put on in their house from a sealed bag before you leave, so they can see what you're doing. Isolating doesn't seem to be working, maybe if they see what you're willing to endure just to see them it might thaw relations a bit. I'm sorry that you're going through this, I hope things get better.

  30. Mizlizkitty

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    Thu Jan 11 2018 9:55:58
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    My parents are having some health issues and im trying to get them some clarity. I told my father he has to get an exterminator. He told me the bugs are gone, he has sprayed 5 cans of pesticide! There are NO bugs.

    From this site i have learned that the above scenario is impossible.

    Right????

  31. BigDummy

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Thu Jan 11 2018 10:42:34
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    Given the track record I doubt that the issue has changed.

  32. Mizlizkitty

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    Thu Jan 11 2018 10:44:20
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    BigDummy - 43 seconds ago  » 
    Given the track record I doubt that the issue has changed.

    Big dummy thank you for your response! Oh my gosh.....this site and you all have been such a help. I’m sorry for all my venting.

  33. BigDummy

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    Thu Jan 11 2018 13:30:57
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    Vent away, you're in a tough position.

  34. CopperblueJ

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    Thu Jan 18 2018 9:45:36
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    Wow, this is sad and I'm very sorry for the stress you must feel. I sat here, drinking my am coffee, thinking. We had them and I learned if you do nothing, it will get ugly. I learned that from you tube. I thought maybe you could take a phone over and show them a video of real infestation.
    There's one on YouTube that an exterminator took. I get naseous thinking of it! Tell them if they do nothing, they'll have that to look forward to. They live on human blood and that leads to disgusting feeding habits that causes nasty regurgitation consisting of blood as well as their crap staining. I'm trying to sound gross because it is gross.
    I'm sure they're lovely people but I wouldn't want to risk getting bed bugs, especially with a child.
    So... you can try getting totally real with visual help, the stories
    ( hey, you could print some pics up and info to accompany it) and the truth of not wanting to risk getting them. Good luck!

  35. Bug Buffet

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    Posted 1 month ago
    Sun Jan 21 2018 0:10:29
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    Totally and completely empathize.

  36. Mizlizkitty

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    Sat Jan 27 2018 22:52:00
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    Thanks everyone. My mother is having some medical issues so i have gone over there. I stand in one spot and remove no clothing items and touch nothing. I dont even sit down ever anymore. This is sad as this is my childhood home and i used to feel safe and happy going there. Now i avoid it. They dont come in my car. They aren’t allowed in my home.

    They had bedbugs last year and spent a fortune on a heat treatment that got rid of them.

    Now that that they are back they kinda feel like well, this is it. They wont go away ever so we just live with them. And their other medical issues are trumping the bed bugs.

    Thank you for everyone’s good wishes.

  37. thirdusername

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    Sun Jan 28 2018 1:27:07
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    Maybe it was the fortune they spent on heat treatment before that turned them off treating now.
    I'm sure the cost of multiple treatments strains a lot of families.

  38. loubugs

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    Mizlizkitty - 9 hours ago  » 
    They had bedbugs last year and spent a fortune on a heat treatment that got rid of them.
    Now that that they are back they kinda feel like well, this is it. They wont go away ever so we just live with them.

    Do you know if along with the heat treatment was any insecticide, such as dusts, also applied? There's absolutely no residual protection and if there were any cooler places in the home and bed bugs happened to be in there, then they could start a new generation if allowed to feed again given that sub-lethal heat didn't affect their internal bacteria.

  39. Mizlizkitty

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    Posted 3 weeks ago
    Sun Jan 28 2018 9:00:38
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    loubugs - 12 minutes ago  » 

    Mizlizkitty - 9 hours ago  » 
    They had bedbugs last year and spent a fortune on a heat treatment that got rid of them.
    Now that that they are back they kinda feel like well, this is it. They wont go away ever so we just live with them.

    Do you know if along with the heat treatment was any insecticide, such as dusts, also applied? There's absolutely no residual protection and if there were any cooler places in the home and bed bugs happened to be in there, then they could start a new generation if allowed to feed again given that sub-lethal heat didn't affect their internal bacteria.

    Lou, yes. They did apply residuals, at least 2-3 times. This was October 2016 and the bugs were gone until summer 2017. Maybe the heat wasnt effective? Also throw into this mix is my mentally disabled brother who likes to “roam”. He isn’t careful at all about his hygiene or surroundings. I am sure he is the epicenter of this problem. When i checked his bed this past august it had large black stains which i know from this forum is bed bug excrement.

    My parents are still of sound mind. I am unable to do anything to make them change their actions.

    As stated above he has a tenant. IF the bugs move down to his apartment it may be the only way things can be forced.


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