Hi, I'm new here

Hi everyone, I am Bill. I was going to tell my story but it has all been told reading through some of the posts. :frowning: Really don’t know what more to add. My son has done all that has been mentioned. Baker acted 10 times, they keep him for 3-5 days and release. He has been in psych hospitals (which are really just places for addicts to detox btw) probably 14 times in 4 years, in jail twice and homeless for several weeks. Our marriage of 26 years disintegrated into divorce and they left town. She is at her wits end and says I am lucky. I guess I kind of am. She can’t have him anymore because he’s going to kill her. He’s currently in psych (detox) hospital for as long as they can take him but have feeling will be back on the streets or possibly in a salvation army homeless shelter once they boot him. Disability is coming, 1.5 years in process… Diagnosed schizo-affective disorder, extreme. Group homes are $4-$5k per month. We make about that much… There is no way. Even if we had $$, what happens when he is thrown out? Those places like to advertise UP FRONT, cash only… Not sure what to say really anymore. He’s never taken drugs in his life, maybe smoked marijuana 3 times in his life, drank probably 3 times as well…

just a quick add, last time she went to visit him after he slit his wrists she was trying to comfort him. His response, he punched her in the face. I said why would you do that!!! He said because it is the only thing that gives me relief.


Yikes. Welcome to a community of fellow caregivers who can relate to your horrific tale. I’m sorry for the pain - for you - your son - your ex-wife - for all of us. There is strange comfort in struggling through a common pain. I hope you find some solace here.


I am so sorry you have been going through all this. You are definitely not alone!

I hope getting disability will help him. I don’t understand why the sévices fr mental illness are so much worse than those for adults with intellectual disability. I have two sons with severe autism, and all their needs are provided for. It’s not perfect, but they live on a campus with a nurse and all kinds of help. Meanwhile the son with schizoaffective lives with us and we are trying to find more help for him.

It isa long road, but this forum is really comforting.


Hi Bill,
Welcome. I was a caregiver to my sz ex husband for 10- plus years. He went through a merry-go-round with medication noncompliance and hospitalizations.
It’s a miracle he hasn’t been arrested. He has shown some violent tendencies ( including pepper spraying the cop who came to our door; giving me a black eye).

Don’t give up hope. I think getting him SS income is important. In your case, I would suggest that you become the guardian of the account.

What finally helped my ex is that he got admitted to a psych hospital for a couple of months. During an extreme episode, he was found wandering down a country road, then hanging outside a WaWa whose owners called the police.

He was facing homelessness—no family support—so when they finally released him they assigned him to a group home. I’m not sure how payments are made, but it’s through his SS income. And he is doing sooooo much better. Actually able to hold down a job.

I agree completely. My first cousin was in the state hospital for 40 years for schizophrenia, she finally died of covid but was taken care of. I have another cousin that is mentally retarded. He has lived in a group home for probably 40 years and is doing fine. It is perplexing that there is an area of nothingness/no help for those afflicted with SZ until they actually do something catastrophic, or so it seems. I know there are exceptions and I hope they will find a place like you mention for my son before something happens.


Welcome to the forum. We have been on a similar road for the past 6 yrs. Our son went off meds last year and really went down hill. He lived in homeless shelters for several months. We finally were able to get him court ordered to meds, but has taken over a year to come back. It’s been rough on our marriage and can relate. In one way you are fortunate your son does not have addiction too. It can really complicate things. We agree there needs to be better resources for structured group homes covered by their disability. Right now we are uncertain where he will live when he gets discharged from his current stint in psych unit. He is too violent to live with us. Good luck to you and never give up hope!


Hi, I’m new here: this is a hard road and our lives have so many similarities: we’ve been and are where you are right now, there’s no easy answers but I have a comment regarding mental health: it’s not the best this days! The meds take at least 4-6 weeks to reach therapeutic levels, we’ve had our son 3-5 days at the hospital and of course he won’t be ok, but also he’s been sent to other hospitals out of our area, they have kept him for 3 weeks some times but they wait for him to take the meds willingly (that is not going to happen ever!) and I think they have told him he’s not going to be out until he takes the meds so he takes the meds couple of times before he’s discharged and the circle repeats again; when he’s glad he’s out he’s fine for couple of days and gets along with his father who is the target of his anger or his delusions when he’s unmedicated and starts out with the same behavior which tends to be aggressive. I only suggest to you to try to learn as much as possible about the squizoaffective disorder, there’s the classes from NAMI which are offered free of charge and a good source for reading about it’s the book ‘I’m Not Sick, I Don’t Need Help’ by doctor Xavier Amador.
I come often to this forum because others also share suggestions on what and how they afront their situation with their loved ones.
I hope you find it helpful and of support for what you are experiencing.
My best wishes to you and your son.

Hi Rosyd, I really appreciate the comments and of course, it is the same script here. He goes berserk and commits whatever atrocities, goes to psych hospital for 3 - 7 days and they call ex wife and say he is coming back to your house haha. Really, they have laughed. The last time he beat her up in the waiting room she was pretty sure he broke her jaw with the face punch that was in his words " as hard as I possibly could hit her." So then after a few days you are free to go? Does anyone see that they are letting loaded guns leave their premises with a chuckle?

“when he’s glad he’s out he’s fine for couple of days and gets along with his father who is the target of his anger or his delusions when he’s unmedicated and starts out with the same behavior which tends to be aggressive.”

This is the way it is. This will not be me. I do not accept that risk and will not have him in my house as I have told them if comes here I will call the police. I’ve done it enough and he will not beat me up. It is my choice and I have a right to my choice and survival.

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We go through a lot! This is here in our State: the court can ‘help’ someone until they do something stupid; who in the right mind wants something like that for his loved one? Our son has been commited to the State hospital a few times, I don’t even remember if it’s been 4-5 times and each time he has spent about 5-6 months; to be there he had to be incarcerated first, the first time it was couple of months in jail, on another occasion he was simply very deteriorated but I don’t even remember why except he had stopped the meds; in 2019 he had to wait in jail 6 months before there was a bed for him at the State hospital and another 6 months there until he was stabilized which I was most grateful for; well, you’d think he had learned but nope, he took the injection about 3 more times and stopped!!! That was in 2020, so in 2021 he was at the hospital I think probably 4-6 times but one of those times he was released without even being assessed! Jeez! Of course I complained about it, I had called the cops because he had thrown a glass to me, good thing it landed on the wall but that’s exactly I complained about because I thought with that behavior he was a threat to others. What the court wants is for you to file charges against your loved one, and I have not because it’s contradictory when they say that mental illnesses are like any other illness, IT ISN’T!
At the court I was advised to call the cops to make a mental health check on my son; it gets old and even traumatic for everyone concerned.
It seems to me that mental health care it’s getting worse and worse; CSP (Community Support Program) used to focus on the clients but now it’s more substance abuse care.
In the other side of the river we have IA but the care it’s only for Iowans; the law regarding mental health is way better: 2 persons go to the court and your loved one will be picked up.

I hope your son gets the financial aid he needs to alleviate not only the economic stress but also the living situation for everyone involved.

Best wishes for each one of you.

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