Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Home for the holidays

My son who has now been hospitlized for 5 months, has gotten a pass to be home for 4 days for christmas, this will be the first time since June… Who has suggestions for keeping some structure during this time. It has just dawned on me that I’ll be busy cleaning and cooking and will get him to help, however, with the cold and snowy weather what are some ideas for keeping him busy so his restlessness won’t drive him and us crazy. Any advice for us to keep him busy would be appreciated. he has negative schizo. and presently is incapable of watching tv or concentrating tasks. help and thanks

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I hear what you are saying about lack of concentration on tasks but in my son’s case he does better if we are right together doing things together…If it were me, I would have my son just help with the simplest aspects of whatever chores or cooking I am doing, and allow him to just hang with me throughout the visit, I find with my son in trying situations staying close to me seems to keep him anchored. In the downtime maybe listen to some soothing holiday music, or look at some family albums or magazines, and just keep the conversation very positive and light hearted. There might be times when he would appreciate a quiet place to nap. Just my thoughts-I wish I had better solutions but we everyone is so different, I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas.


Does he have a favorite or likes Christmas movies? Does he have a favorite meal or dessert? Just get those for him and put it on and either make it for him or buy it at a store even if he can’t focus on it, it’ll bring him good/happy memories. Does he like candy or puzzles? Think about things that he enjoyed as a child/adult when he lived with you.


It has been a year and I’m wondering how things turned out for your loved one and your family. The holidays are approaching again soon, so I expect others would like to have ideas for those times coming up. As was stated by someone else on the post, each person and situation is so individual. However, for someone just getting out of a treatment program (or on a “pass”), I recommend that the family get ideas from professionals in the program that have come to know your loved one during treatment. And don’t try to think that things will be the same because they probably aren’t and won’t be.

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An old man I sat next to at church told me today that “life is what you make it”. I smiled and told him I hope I didn’t have to wait till I was 80 to learn that. It is so true. I love the holidays and will make it the best I possibly can.

I hope to spend time cooking good things with my son and husband and I would like to do a little entertaining. I think our son and us benefit so much from guests and family.

I’m so thankful my son is alive and talks to us occasionally and other than the head, incredibly healthy. He made us bean, cheese, jalapeños, onion, red pepper burritos today that were out of this world.

Love to you and yours!