As some of you know, my son has child schizophrenia. He has had some very severe symptoms for the last few months, which led to his diagnosis. He is being medicated, which is controlling the psychosis, but he has been high as a kite for days, uncontrollably so. To the degree that he is being given a regular dose of procyclidine to counteract the manias.
Of course, when he’s THAT high, there’s only one way to go. And he hit rock bottom this evening. He started when I picked up his 10 year old little brother from school, the second he saw him he started being mean, nasty comments, saying he didn’t want him sat in the car near him.
By teatime, he was shouting across the house at his brother that he wished he’d never been born or would just die now, that he hated me for giving birth to him.
My amazing little boy pretended he didn’t hear him, and stayed out of the way. When L had calmed down and apologised, my youngest said “it’s ok bro, don’t worry, I love you!”.
But is this normal? Is this something we need to expect from L?
I have asked my youngest’s school to arrange for counselling and some techniques to help him deal with L’s behaviour, but this is relatively new. Does anyone know if this is a behaviour we need to expect when he is feeling down?
The only way I managed to calm L, was to give him his evening meds early and just sit with him till bedtime, but that meant I didn’t give my youngest all the attention he desperately needed after having those insults thrown at him all evening.
I am exhausted, is this what the crisis team is for? Is this part of his condition? I’m a single parent, I’m not sure how tightly a can be stretched!
When I was off my med’s and on an emotional binge I would say things intended to have an effect - to make people back away from me. I did this because I felt helpless. I would say things to try to scare people away. I’ve seen other sz’s do this too. Could be your son is trying to carve out space for himself that he isn’t really entitled to. He is beset by his demons and he can’t cope with them in a productive way. Sometimes the only thing for it is a commitment. Let those responsible know about his behavior.
@crimby thank you, that kind of makes sense. He’s been off school for 5 weeks now, with no view of going back, so he’s probably struggling with that also (he’s autistic and needs routine).
He broke down in tears after a few hours, said he hates being like this. Poor boy, I wish I could do something.
Maybe a day program or respite care?
Situation sounds impossible for one person to handle.
I’m not sure that this is something a crisis team can help with.
I don’t know much about child on-set however I do follow a blog of a lady who’s son goes through these types of extreme mood swings. I do believe this is fairly normal. I was going to link the blog however the author has made the blog private.
@Hereandhere no, there is no option for residential care. He’s still under child mental health services, they don’t have residential facilities for children, he would have to go into an adult unit for people with learning difficulties. That really would be worse for him.
He gets visits from the home treatment team, and I can call the crisis team to chat when I need it, but it really isn’t enough.
I agree with you this week, it is too much for one person to handle.
It’s proving to be extremely hard to find anyone who knows about child sz,
I’m getting a call from a mental health professional at a MI charity for children on Monday, I’m hoping they can throw some light on what I should expect.
Hi again, Letyian,
Where I live respite care means someone trained comes to your house and helps out for anywhere from a few hours to a few days when needed. It’s available through the state’s health and welfare agency.
I am hopeful for your family. Sounds like the person you talk to Monday will be able to listen to you and help you find resources.
There is no residential treatment for minors here either.
Poor kid. But lots of kids, schizophrenic or not, are mean sometimes and say mean things and it’s not unusual for a sibling to be a target. Add the frustration of having a mental illness when you’re a small person who doesn’t understand fully why he is suffering like this and emotions are bound to spill over. When someone has schizophrenia and they are on medication, the medication controls some of the symptoms, but it doesn’t controls all of them. Some symptom is going to manifest itself in some way. The way that it manifests itself depends on the individual. Anyway, I’m sorry you and your family are going through this, I hope it gets a little easier to cope with if that’s possible.
@Hereandhere that sounds good, is that in the US?
I’ve had a few offers from friends to watch him while I take the other lads on appointments, parents evenings at school, etc. I am taking them up on every offer, but they all work or have other commitments so it’s not as easy as it sounds to get the help when I need it.
At this stage, it doesn’t look like he will go back to school, so it’s making things very hard for his brothers. I homeschool his 14 year old brother, he is autistic and has selective mutism, so I really have to work hard with him to get anything back. But I can’t even manage an hour of 1:1 with T without L needing me.
@77nick77 thanks for your kind words. I do understand that some kids can be mean, but he reason why this is so upsetting is that L is normally a very kind and supportive lad. We have been through a very difficult few years, escaping domestic violence and starting again with nothing last summer. We have a very, very close bond with each other, me and my 3 boys. They are all on the autistic spectrum and our home is normally a very quiet and calm environment.
With the start of L’s more severe symptoms, I’ve had to wrestle knifes out of his hands, hide away the meds, clean up blood from when he’s dismantled razorblades and call the police to calm him down during his more violent delusions.
It’s been like someone set a bomb off in our home. When he’s calm, he feels awful, he apologises, which his brothers have been great about, normally they have a cuddle and it’s done, but I can see the long term affect its having on them, but they are nervous and jumpy. They avoid playing with him, and he is distancing himself from them. If he goes into the kitchen, T starts fretting, follows him, watches what he’s doing, which in turn makes L annoyed and triggers a negative thought cycle.
He’s been very very depressed these last few days. He’s seeing the psychiatrist on Tuesday. He says he’s not hearing voices, just feels sad.