She has been on many different medications, and she has been getting worse. She hears voices all the time now, and is in a longer term hospital. She is convinced that we are trying to poison her, and refuses to talk to us, or let the doctors give us any information about her. She is conserved through the county, and they are sending her to longer term care. I wonder if anyone else has had a family member go downhill like this, and has gotten to the point where they are not speaking to family for a month or two. Did they come out of the state they’re in? Is there any chance for recovery, or is she lost forever? We can’t talk to the doctors, so, we don’t know anything.
When I first had my psychotic break, I also thought that my parents were trying to poison me. I also thought that they were in the business of selling sex tapes of their children on the internet. It was just a delusion, of course, but I believed it firmly. I wasn’t too willing to talk to them either. Gradually, my mind came back to me, and I was willing to talk with them. So, don’t give up. Once her delusions no longer have the power that they do now, she will talk to you again.
The last time my son was inpatient he thought that I was trying to kill him. Someone asked me if I was aware of this which kind of surprised me as from what I have learned it is fairly common so it was to be expected. I think one staff member asked me like it was a question if it was possible. Again took me a little back as he had just came out of thinking he was a vampire and about two days of not even thinking he was in the hospital. I just replied: From his point of view he probably does think this as I was the one that had him admitted and wanted the psychosis gone which would be killing a part of him. I was also in a situation where I didn’t have much access to his file as he is legally an adult and protected under the Mental Health Act and Privacy laws. They discussed his treatment with me while in an emergency situation but once he got a little better then I was told they couldn’t tell me what medications he was on, etc. Because he was still a little paranoid about me trying to kill him I didn’t ask him to sign the release giving me access until the right opportunity showed itself. He wanted me to get him out and asked me to talk to them about it happening. I told him I couldn’t talk to them about his file because he needed to sign a release giving them permission to talk to me. I didn’t say that I would talk to them about getting him out. A little manipulation of words but he signed the release then we went from there. Really I didn’t need to know all the particulars just that he was in a safe place but I like to research medications.
I tried to see him every day in the beginning but I backed off a bit until he was more stable as for a bit he was too far into his psychosis and too negative with me. Time was moving differently for him so I didn’t feel bad if I missed a day. He didn’t know what day it was anyways and even now 6 months later I don’t think he knows how long he was in that state. For about 3-4 days he was in full blown psychosis. Thought he was a vampire and in a gang. Didn’t know that he was in the hospital. Thought his fingernails were diamonds. Could barely talk to him as the voices were so prominent that he was constantly answering them. He was under guard for a period and constantly butting heads with them as he thought they were trying to harm him too, same I think with other patients. I eased that a little bit by telling him that they were there to protect him so that turned into a delusion that they were “his guards”. Eventually he made friends with one of them.
It was hard trying to figure out what was going on sometimes. He was so upset with certain things. I think once they had to lock him in his room as he wasn’t allowed out of that area but he didn’t understand that and kept trying to leave. He was upset with staff not being at his beck and call. From his point of view they were being abusive. He didn’t like his psychiatrist even though he really liked him before admission.
He was pretty negative for a bit. His paranoia was really high. I got the brunt of it. A couple of times I walked away from him as he was swearing at me which I won’t allow. Eventually as he became a little stable on medications then it got easier. I spent more time there with him. He started calling me.
So no I don’t think that she is lost forever. She is being controlled by her symptoms. Unfortunately, I think there needs to be a place for this to be directed and right now that may be you. She can’t understand that the paranoia is coming from herself so for her it’s probably logical to put the responsibility of those feelings on an external cause. It’s like: I feel so sure that someone is trying to poison me (paranoia) it must be happening. The feeling is so strong that it must be true.
Hopefully once they get her on a medication that works then this will fall away and she will start to come around and want to communicate with you again. Don’t give up hope. If I could show you the difference in my son during his break in September and where he is at right now… We are actually looking into him going to an adult school program to get his GED. He does his own laundry. He makes his own coffee. He is currently the most medication compliant that he has ever been. It took 6 hospitalizations in 3 years but for right now he is stable. We have a lot of support in the program that he is in so he sees someone from that program sometimes twice a week. Hang in there and don’t give up hope. Your daughter is still in there.
This disease is different for everyone, but this one thing does seem to be common. I refused to speak to or see my parents for a while. I too was convinced they were trying to control me, kill me, get me out of the way.
But as I too became stable, I snapped out of it. My parents are amazing and always have been. But during my swan song of a major break, I couldn’t understand what was going on. I could barely function and everything confused me, scared me, made me angry. My kid sis used the analogy for me… of a beloved family dog so hurt and scared that it even snaps and bites at it’s human.
A thought that just hit me was… the worst time I put my parents through was when I refused all contact with them when I was homeless. I wasn’t on meds, I was drinking heavily, I was completely unstable, (I call it my publicly rabid days) and they barely had any knowledge of where I was, what I was doing or if I was even alive.
In hospital, it wasn’t easy on them either, but they knew I was getting meds into me, they knew I wasn’t hurting myself or someone else. They knew where I was and had no ability to leave. So even though it was painful for them having me act out like this in hospital, I’ve been told that it wasn’t as bad as when I was unstable and no where to be found.
But hang in there, she will stabilize and come back to you. She might be angry, but she will need you and see that when all this calms down. It will calm down.
I’m rooting for you…
I was in hospital for 6 months. I didn’t want to see my husband or kids. Not my mom either. Didn’t talk to them. It got better. My husband was there for me when I got back out in reality. The pdoc had told him that he can’t count on me coming back at all. I lived at my mom’s place for 4 months after the hospital because I didn’t manage on my own. Couldn’t handle the kids or pay bills or anything. This was 2010. I’m still not the same person I was before I got ill. I am me but different.