Ravaged By Alcoholism: Heart-Wrenching Photos Of Frail Mum-Of-Four - Who Is Just 35 Years Old

14/08/2014 16:57 | Updated 20 May 2015

Alcoholic mother

Bedridden and looking old and frail, believe it or not this heart-wrenching photograph is of a mother-of-four – aged just 35.

After months in a care home, Beverley Pickorer is facing certain death from the dreadful effects of liver disease caused by a lifetime of heavy drinking.

The mum – whose four young children are all in care - has one last wish: that she is able to go home to her partner Anthony Howard before she dies.

Beverley, from Parson Cross, Sheffield, has been drink-dependent for years. At her worst she was downing up to 24 cans of lager plus a bottle of pear cider in the morning, then visiting the pub, then drinking as many as 16 cans when she returned home.

It has cost her everything - especially her children, aged six to 15 - and the damage the awful disease has inflicted is there for all to see, in her pained expression, jaundiced complexion and ravaged body. She also suffers epileptic seizures.

For the last eight months, Beverley has been receiving palliative care as the youngest resident of Haythorne Place Care Home, in Shiregreen, where most of her companions are elderly pensioners.

Anthony said: "I've been looking after my partner for five-and-a-half years, and she's constantly been in and out of hospital with liver cirrhosis.

"She's the youngest person in this care home. All she can do every day now is stay in bed. The staff come and turn her every two hours."

Anthony said Beverley's drinking problems started in her early 20s, during a series of troubled relationships.

Alcoholic mother

He said: "When I met her I took her drinking as part of her, it's something I got used to.

"When she got up and had a can in her hand straightaway, I got immune to it. To her it was like having a cup of tea.

"Beverley has four beautiful children and they have all been taken into care because she can't look after them. It's tragic.

"We made an agreement that when she dies she would die in my arms at home, but the NHS has said it would be too expensive to care for her at home.

"They would have to pay for one carer and a nurse. She's on a syringe driver to stop her having seizures.

"But Beverley wants to die at home and I don't think you can deny a person that."

Matt McMullen, from the Sheffield Alcohol Support Service, said Beverley's situation was 'very sad', adding: "Unfortunately it is not unheard of for someone of such a young age to be experiencing such severe health problems as a result of alcohol consumption."

Kevin Clifford, chief nurse for NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "Whenever possible, the CCG looks to arrange care which meets the wishes of patients and their carers, as well as their care needs.

"However, in so doing, we have to consider the safest and most appropriate manner in which an individual's needs can be met.

"It is always regrettable when we have to take a decision based on a patient's safety which doesn't meet the hopes of their family.

"But we work with the family to offer them a range of solutions, and endeavour to offer a care package that is in the best interests of the patient and agreeable to the family."


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