Can I force her to tell me what’s wrong?

Woman (UK) - - Beauty Editor’s Picks -

My mum has been very ill and I know she sees her doc­tor just about ev­ery week. We think she has can­cer but she won’t talk about it with my dad, me or my brother, or her sis­ter. She won’t let my dad go with her to ap­point­ments ei­ther. When we try to ask her what’s wrong she changes the sub­ject, and when we try to in­sist she lets one of us talk to her doc­tor, she says she has a right to her pri­vacy. Does her right to pri­vacy count in this case?

Suzie says:

You may not like the way she’s han­dling this but her right to do it her way re­mains no mat­ter the sit­u­a­tion. If her ill­ness was such that her doc­tors had to say she ‘lacked ca­pac­ity’, which means she was un­able to make rea­son­able judge­ments, then fam­ily may be asked to step in. But while she is in her right mind, even if that con­flicts with your pref­er­ences, she can say no. Tell her you love her, and ask your GP for sup­port for your­self and your dad.

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