Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Adult son with schizophrenia almost killed father

My 29 year old son with schizophrenia beat his 63 year old father badly. He has never been on medications. He always talks his way out of treatment. He can be beating himself in face but when police show up he turns into perfect smooth talking person. He is in jail now for what he did to his father awaiting trial. I let prosecutor listen to voice messages talking about voices. Prosecutor said he is there to prosecute him, not caring about mental illness. His uncle paid for attorney for him. My son has convinced them he is fine. No mental illness. Does anyone have experience with schizophrenic adults that can change behavior depending on situations?

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Given the situation, I think your choices are limited. I think a restraining order, with serious plans to enforce it, would be needed at this point.

My son definitely modifies his behavior to some extent, but usually once he is in the hospital, it all comes to the surface.

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We have never gotten him in hospital.

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I’m sorry to hear about your experience. It might be a good time for his attorney to request a mental health evaluation based on his actions and your voice messages. Hopefully his psychosis presents so the courts can force him into treatment. This is also a good time to discuss a safety plan and boundaries because his behavior is out of control. Be safe.


Your son beat up his father and I believe that’s enough to have him committed to a hospital. I don’t know where you live but here in the states a person can be committed to a psych hospital if he’s a danger to himself and others.

One of the problems with schizophrenia is intrusive thoughts.
You can get very negative, intrusive thoughts about yourself or others, and sometimes these thoughts can be overwhelming.
I never had intrusive thoughts about harming people, but still my intrusive thoughts were harmful.
This is one of the main reasons to take antipsychotics, because they are effective at controlling
intrusive thoughts and make the person safer for the environment.

BUT, I can’t make excuses for this son, I would NEVER EVER harm my dad, under any circumstances,
schizophrenia or no schizophrenia.
I believe he should face jail time.

@tired3553, I am nearly 7 months away from my sons one of many outburst of violence that in my case resulted in a hospitalization, rather than an arrest.

You just never know in those extreme moments which direction things could go, and although my son was not a violent person in his nature, there were times we were very worried for our safety, for his safety, or for what would come next. My one suggestion in this case is when there is an incident of this magnitude, you have some power or ability to request…and even highlight the significance of the event in light of a mental health diagnosis. The prosecutor is correct, but there may be a legal member of that team that is experienced in public petitions for people to be hospitalized and is well versed in schizophrenia and the necessity of involuntary hospitalizations. This person may be someone to tap into to help understand and approach this related to your son being unwilling to take medication or have treatment for his mental health. This moment is where you advocate the hardest you have so far on behalf of your son for a thorough evaluation because of what you have experienced in your home with him before now…and in this situation with his father. Tell all involved that medication/hospitalization is needed. Accept nothing less. Maybe it can become part of the order in the court…?

You may, or may not be successful, but all of this creates a necessary track record. I had been preparing for the moment you are in, as I had been close a number of times in the past. I had a daily log of my son’s behavior, his sleep habits, when he showered/didn’t, what/when he ate, etc. Ultimately it was violence, a call to the sheriff, prior to this petitioning the county attorney for him to be hospitalized, and ultimately me saying he could not return to my home. Perhaps you could recreate the history with your son? A detailed log to give to someone of other things that are relevant in this case? I was successful, but it was because of the months of documentation, ER visits, destruction of property, his behavior, and ultimately me saying I would no longer house him.

Each of our loved ones have different ways that this illness, when not medicated, manifests itself…but the moment you are in is an opportunity to display how dangerous he can be in this illness. I wouldn’t allow the prosecutor or anyone around him to define it without being in context of “because of the illness.” Read the law in your state. There is likely a part of it that says, danger to others…use the part of the law that he is a danger to others in this moment and this instance to help illustrate all aspects of how the illness is impacting your son so he can get some help.

I wish you strength and stamina in this, as that is what you need…and peace while he is not in your home. May you have a successful outcome in this all.

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First off, I am so sorry for the heartache you and your husband must be feeling right now. Don’t be afraid to get help for the trauma he and you experienced.
I believe that changing behavior is part of this illness. As parents we have to draw the line at violence towards ourselves or others. We have the power of the court if we go forth and file the Mental Inquest Warrant. This gets the sheriff to pick them up and transport them to the hospital. Calling the police doesn’t necessarily work every time and I believe is somewhat of a gamble depending upon who shows up in our experience.

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