Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

I am a Newbie

Hello, I am new to this site and am grateful it is here. I am the eldest of 5 siblings. My brother is 32 years old and was diagnosed approx 10 years ago. I have just relocated to live near my siblings and be a help to my brother regain some of his life. Due to family dynamics, co-dependent issues and frankly denial, my family has never entered counseling or educated ourselves in depth about this condition. I am ready to turn my fear into opportunities. I have made the call to NAMI and am looking forward to my first group.
My first question I guess is how do I act?! How do I help him? I’m nervous about coming on too strong and causing him confusion or anger. He goes to his Dr. twice a month, so I know he’s under solid health care, but as I read the threads written by (the patient?) my brother seems much more disorganized in his thoughts and actually catatonic.

I imagine that the people at the meeting will be familiar with people who are subject to your circumstances. They will know the best way to treat you. Try not to bring preconceptions to the meeting. Take what is useful to you, leave behind things that don’t help.

Thank you for that :slight_smile:

I have had paranoid schizophrenia for 35 years. My two sisters treat me like I’m perfectly normal and with patience and advice. They have always included me in many family activities or they take me places for entertainment with either of them or both of them. I talk to them often on the phone and they have always helped me and supported me, through good times and bad times. When their friends see my sisters treating me normal than their friends treat me normal too. I never ask them for money or to pay for me, but they almost always pay for me when we do something. They far from rich, but they have always had good jobs so money is usually not an issue with them but I like to pay my own way when I can.

But money is not the reason why I like being around them. I have known them 54 and we still get along and they are good company and fun to be around. They knew me when I was in all the hospitals and just about the only bright point in my 8 month hospital stay in 1982 was when my sister walked into the ward to pick me up on a weekend pass. She would walk in with a big smile and it was like a ray of sunshine in the middle of a dark storm.

Visit your brother and be around him but know when to give him space when he needs it. Bring him food, lol. Everybody likes the gift of food! You’re both humans, treat him like a human.

thought i would say hi.
take care :deciduous_tree:

Yep I imagine that the folks at nammi will really like you, id like to go to a meeting myself …maybe next vacation.

Thank you so much, I added Surviving Schizophrenia, in addition to a couple others, to my Amazon cart.

Hi darksith, thanks for the welcome. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the tips. My common sense tells me to treat him normally, yet be aware of the need to give him space. Unfortunately, during one of his “breaks” he assaulted our mother and it has caused much fear. This was about 5 years ago and at the time he had been off his meds and the dynamics at home were enough to make anyone lose it. Fast forward to present day- we spent the better part of last weekend together and was pleasantly surprised. He came with me and my daughter to her soccer match and told us he loved us when we dropped him off at his apartment. I’ll tell you, I’m holding on to that and it has been incredibly encouraging!

Welcome WriteLoveOnHisArm! This site continues to help me, may you find it the same.