Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

How long do we wait?

We are on Day 19 of no medication. How long do we wait before trying to get him some medical help. So far, the information we get from his doctor and therapist is that there is nothing we can do. He’s definitely declining. He’s smoking a lot of pot, much less social, watching a ton of TV, and smiling to himself. There are a few new holes in our wall - this must happen when we are gone and he’s by himself. This is hell.


19 days is to long, assuming he is an adult refusing docs and meds, about all you can do other than talking till your blue in the face is establish a legal medical power of attorney over him or if he exhibits physical harm to himself or others, call the cops.

Where does he get money for that?

He worked all summer and was doing really well on his medication. He saves everything so unfortunately, he has plenty of his own money to buy things he shouldn’t.

Charge him for rent and take it…

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Do you think 19 days is too long to wait or is not long enough? Sorry, confused by your reply. Trying to decide how long is too long to wait, or are we just going to be wasting our time trying to get him to get help that he refuses since he’s an adult.

19 days without meds is way to long to wait…

It is hard to say but without a legal mechanism to force his meds, the docs are correct, there is nothing you can do other than medical power of attorney …

Yep, welcome to the pit…

Maggie, what do you mean by how long do you wait? Usually its a behavior you are waiting for rather than a time frame. Are you familiar with the laws of your state or country?

Remind us, how did you get him on meds originally? Did he say why he stopped? I am so sorry, it sounds as though he was doing well on meds, he was even working.

Limiting money was the suggestion of our son’s original psychiatrist. For some its how you can motivate them to take their meds again.

If you have written all this recently, I apologize, its been a little deep around here in our own pit of hell lately. Take care, Hope

Thank you. Yes, it truly is the pit. We’ve been in it for a year and half and it’s taking a worse turn. I know - it’s so hard to know - am I waiting too long, is his behavior bad enough to be admitted or are we looking too hard, or are we too used to it, it’s already bad but we don’t know because we are desensitized? I just don’t know - he does get violent eventually. I’m prepared to lie to the police if and when I have to so he can be 5050’d. The dog comes everywhere with me now because he will go after the dog (who he loves so much but for some reason when he’s psychotic thinks it’s staring at him) We got him on meds originally because he was hospitalized and that was the condition to coming home. We kept him on for almost a year and then everything we said didn’t matter. We threatened, cajoled, begged, said he couldn’t live here, etc. Tried everything but he has no insight and so doesn’t think he needs them and he’s super stubborn - always has been. I like the idea of limiting his money and charging rent. I agree. I just called the conservator in our county to see what we can do to earn conservatorship over him.

On medication he was going to school, was back on track and working. He did so great over the summer working and making friends…then, he self-sabotaged and decided that was it for meds - right when he’s in the midst of going to school.

So sorry you are going thru this.:rose:

How is he when you bring up the medication issue? What about an injectable med? it seems that compliance is better this way.

Could you convince him to get a job?That would mean he would have to take medication. A win-win.

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Oh Maggie! It sounds like he was doing so well on meds! I just hurt for you thinking about how disappointing this is for you.

They do follow patterns, yes, if he has been violent before, you know it will go that way again. Yes, the holes in the wall might show its starting up. You should call the police at the slightest threat. Verbally threatening to hurt you, looking at you and hitting something else, anything like that. Yes, keep the dog with you.

Does your county have a mental health officer or Crisis Intervention Team? They prefer to be called out to help before it gets violent.

Beside the walls, what else is happening when you say, “its already bad”?

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Yep, sounds like yall have waited long enough… Its time to do something, your call is the first step.

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Sorry, I just reread your post about trying everything to conjole him to take meds. Didn’t mean to assume otherwise.


Unless he will voluntarily accept treatment, you wait until he meets criteria for commitment.

Since these criteria are different in every state and applied differently by every county depending on resources, my suggestion is to call your county’s mental health care crisis line and describe the behavior to one of their social workers or clinicians in order to find out whether criteria for involuntary evaluation/ treatment are met.

Long road. I’m sorry you’re going through this.

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I was told by our county attorney that even though we are his legal guardians, we cannot force medication. We talk to our son daily with respect and expect the same. Write your concerns and date them. Use this to present to the court for an Mental inquest warrant if and when you have to. Breathe and take it a day at a time.

He was on an injectable. It was great. He had a summer job and than a job at a school but he had to take his meds to keep his job. So, they unscheduled him. He didn’t get fired, but staying on meds was part of the “encouragement”. It didn’t work! :frowning:

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In our area, according to our community psychiatrist, calling the police to get a person evaluated for hospitalization can include destruction of property, especially if the person already is known as having a psychiatric illness. Maybe you can call now? One of the things I regret most is not calling sooner.

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That how it was for my son in 2015 but once he decided to stop the Invega Sustenna injections, it took about three months for all his symptoms to return. He was doing great before the medication refusal similar to your son. This roller coaster ride is part of the disorder and very challenging for caregivers. It is time to call the police and have him escorted to the hospital for a psych evaluation based on property destruction, psychotic symptoms (threatening the dog), and non compliant with his psychotropic medications. I pray that things will improve for you and your son.


Just saying from my perspective if my parents did that to me I would have a very hard time trusting them again.