I think I just need to vent and get these thoughts out in writing. Feedback welcome.
My son has a friend who lives across the hall who is also schizophrenic. In the beginning I was very happy that my son gained a friend that I thought he could discuss things with other then me or his workers. There is so much concern over isolation. However I do not feel that that is an issue with my son as he doesn’t isolate himself unless in active psychosis. The problem with this friend is that he drinks a lot and smokes marijuana. I don’t blame him for my son’s choices but I struggle with the reality that if my son didn’t have such easy access to these things than he wouldn’t drink or use as often. Even without money he just has to walk across the hall and there it is. Because of this my son is drinking a lot more regularly. At least on his own he would only have money for alcohol and/or marijuana once a month then it would be gone and he would have to go without until the next month. I see the pattern over and over. He drinks more then it’s more marijuana and insight goes out the window and he stops taking his medications either by choice or because he just keeps forgetting them. His nurse has been trying to teach him that he can’t do both and remain out of hospital. He’s had 6 hospitalizations in 3 years. The last one in September.
I feel very strongly that my son’s last break probably would not have happened if it wasn’t for this relationship. Again I don’t blame the friend but if they weren’t drinking together all the time and smoking marijuana then the resulting down slip could probably have been avoided.
All this has been building up and a recent conflict I had with this friend is making me realize that I have some big decisions to make. Two days ago he came in my apartment drunk. My son was napping. I got told that I shouldn’t be giving my son his sleeping meds because look at what it is doing to him, he is sleeping during the day. I replied he is sleeping because he is not taking his meds correctly and because he is drinking and smoking pot. (He had stopped taking his Trazodone which helps keep his thoughts and mind from racing and results in him not sleeping right along with the drinking and pot) Of course I got attitude and got told that it is ok for him to drink 3 beer a day, his addictions counselor told him so and drinking doesn’t make him sleep during the day so it’s not the drinking doing this to my son. I replied go to AA and see if they tell you that it is ok to drink every day. Then I was told that cigarettes are more harmful then marijuana that it is ok that he is smoking it couple of times a day because the cigarettes are worse. I replied that he needed some education because I have been through drug rehab and there is more harmful chemicals in one joint then a pack of cigarettes. He left. The next day when he came over I asked him if he remembered the night before and he said: ya I remember you telling me that I needed to go to AA and that pissed him off. I told him that I recalled the conversation a little differently and that I don’t appreciate him coming into my home telling me how to handle my son’s medications when I am the one here every day trying to help him and that I would be the one holding his hand every day if he relapses and has to get admitted again. That if he does it again he will not be welcome in my home. He left. Later that day he came back and said he didn’t mean any disrespect that he was just voicing his opinion on my son’s sleeping meds. I asked what sleeping meds as my son doesn’t take sleeping pills. He calls his night time ones his sleeping ones. Later that day my son comes back from there with a bottle of beer because his friend was kicking him out because he was going to sleep. This is a fairly regular occurrence. His friend sleeps a lot during the day due to drinking to much. So ya I’m kinda pissed that this what I am dealing with.
The dilemma is that we can not afford to move right now. My husband has horrible credit and everyone does credit checks so we can’t find someone to rent to us. If I get a full time job then I will not be here with my son the way I want to be and I would have to find a job that pays enough so that I could show that I could afford it without putting my husband on the lease because his credit rating would still have us denied. I feel like I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place. I can’t stop my son from seeing this friend. Anyways sorry for the length I just needed to get these thoughts out as they are just going in circles and frustrating me.