It’s quite common to notice that someone we know needs help. Often we see that they’re not looking after themselves, or causing themselves or other people harm because they’re not in control of what they’re doing. Or we may notice that someone is being abused or taken advantage of but not know how to stop it.
If you’re concerned about someone else, you can contact Adult Social Care Services. If we agree that your concerns are something we should deal with, we’ll start an assessment or investigation.
We’ll do our best to work with the person, so we will try to get to know them and find out what is ‘going wrong’.
We understand that they may not want our help. However, there are times when we are legally required to do an assessment or investigation whether they agree or not. To do anything against a person’s wishes is a last resort and everyone would hope to avoid things being done against their will. Unfortunately, sometimes we have to, and there are legal procedures we must follow when that happens.
Usually, when others are so concerned that they involve Adult Social Care Services, it’s because the person has a mental illness or damaged thinking. That is not always the case. Lots of us find it difficult to ask for help and admit we cannot fully look after ourselves. Sometimes therefore, these situations arise out of fear, pride and denial and in those cases, we’ll try to get the person to trust us and accept our help.
Sometimes people expect us to do things that we cannot legally do. If the person we’re worried about is able to make their own decisions, then there is nothing we can impose on them. The law says we can all make our own decisions, if we have the mental capacity to do so, even if others think we are wrong.
That may not be the end of the story because things develop and the reasons why people may be concerned may indicate a problem that has not yet got to the point that action can be taken.
This is quite a common situation, and it can be difficult. Usually, the person being cared for is happy with things the way they are, but the carer is struggling to cope.
If you are caring for someone but feel like it’s is too much for you to handle alone, you need to be honest with the person you care for. We can help and support you but we can only do that if you talk to us, and then work with us to get the person you care for to accept other help.
This can be really difficult in the beginning, but usually things work out in the long run.