Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

I am at a loss and do not know what to do

I have been dealing with my Son mental Illness since Jun 2015 and he has been in and out of Hospital in different States. The longest stay between Hospital and Facility was in california where he was conserved for 2 and 1/2 years.
he got somehow better after he was discharged from California Conservatorship and he was discharged to be with a family friend but he started cutting his medicine there then he came to stay with me in MidWest and he kept reducing his medicine but still was doing OK until March of 2021, he behavior started really changing and becoming more aggressive toward me. I call 911 a couple of times but there was no bed for him Due to COV 19 demands on the hospital beds & also doctor convinced me to take him back.
in Agust, he stole my credit card and took a trip to Las Vegas to see a friend and get into argument with his friend and ended up Homeless for a few days in Las Vegas. I got him help ( called 911) and he was hospitalized for 14 days in Las Vegas and traveled to get him. I had a miserable time during Travel.
When we get home, he refused to take his medicine and when I was trying to convince him to take the meds he hit me really hard on my right Arm and he was talking to me in a very bad language. I called 911 and asked them to take him to a different hospital and he stayed there for 35 days. He was calling me every day trying to negotiate with me and he promised to take his medicine after he is discharged.
during his last Hospitalization, nurses caught him spitting his meds for few times and Pdoc told him that it does not take it, he will stay in Hospital longer. So he took it so he can be discharged.
Now, he is out of the hospital and cutting his medicine and refusing to go to Therapy & refusing to take his 2nd monthly Invega shot in November. he keeps saying that he was never sick.
I am trying to crash his pill meds in food and coffee to the best of my ability but I know that he will go down in a few months and would require hospitalization.
I have the option to Court order him but I know after that he will not be compliant on meds after he is discharged like all the previous 15+ times
The court order treatment is a very hard process for me and makes me highly anxious.
What woud you do if you are in My place? would you Court Order him knowing that he will probably stay in hospital a Maximum of 14 to 20 days and that is not enough to make him well?
OR Keep crashing the meds and see if he gets better with time ?
I know Antiphyscitic meds take a long time to make an impact.

PLEASE HELP, I am suffering tremendously and the holidays are around the corner.
I hope God helps me through this process. I am in a tough place in my life

So sorry you are going through this. :pray:

1 Like

It’s really difficult to have to be the “strict” parent/adult in a situation when a family member with SZ is struggling. I think that a conversation with your son needs to happen. He’s promised to drink his medicine once he return to live with you and is no longer doing so. State this and remind them it was THEIR promise to you. Say you’re trying to help them, and they need to help you in order to do so. Using a balance in tone to be both the “strict” parent but ALSO the concerned parent. You love your child and are doing the very best that you can to do make sure they are okay.
When my family member usually ask me for a cigarette / $, I have them drink their medicine first and meet them half-ways with what they want and with what I know they need.
I hope some of this helps and hope others can share more. Sending strength & hope.

3 Likes

I think I should also mention that giving them something they’re want(“rewarding”, such as a cigarette), is temporary and I’ve been monitoring it. I know that if they could (& they have), they’d smoke a whole pack or 2 a day. Currently, we’re at 3 cigarettes a day which is a significant compromise/improvement. I hope to help them with this as well.

2 Likes

I have to be honest. If I were you, I’d kick him out because without meds he’s dangerous. Not all people suffering from psychosis are violent. But he has proven he is. I know it’s hard, but it might be the only way for him to hit rock bottom and agree he needs meds. I’d tell him if you don’t take your meds, you can’t live here.

3 Likes

I agree but not sure if I can do it. thanks for your advise.

1 Like

you are doing good with setting boundaries. it is just hard to deal with my son. he has severe mental illness.

you have a point. I tried to enforce the medicine but he always get away with what he wanted. he is very manipulative. I may just have to do court treatment if I cannot get the medicine from the clinic that he was assigned to?
the new clinic requires that he sees a therapist prior seeing a Pdoc and since he is refusing, his medicine I think will not be refilled. that leaves me no choice but to proceed with the court order for Med- non Compliance.

3 Likes

You can try and bribe him with money if he takes the shot once a month and sees a therapist . I know a few people that have done that and it actually works . One gave her son $100 after every monthly shot .

1 Like

I would definitely try to get the court to order mandatory monthly injections, with stated consequences for failure to comply. Would also make clear to him that you cannot help him if he assaults you again, because that behavior is not okay.

2 Likes

if I give him money, he will find a way to travel like take grey hound to another state. I had tried that before in 2016 and gave him $100 at a time like 3 times with another medicine ( Zyprexa) and he took off to California.

I am moving forward with the Court order of Treatment.

3 Likes

Im sorry to hear … i guess it is better to get a court order . good luck :pray:

1 Like

The only way I could get my son compliant on medication is to give him halperidol aka haldol. I also have him on a low dosage otherwise it will dull him. My son is on 3.5 mg I give him 2 mg at night and 1.5 during the day. My son asks for his meds. But the other meds were so bad for him he wouldn’t take them either. They made him feel worst. God Bless to you.

2 Likes

Been there…
Get the court order, and if approved, they have a AOT, team that can monitor your son and make sure he takes his meds. Good for up to 2 years, if needed.

2 Likes

serenity,
I am not sure if the court order can serve for 2 years. I did a court in 2015 here in Arkansas and it was enforced only for 45 days. I will check with the court on this. I hope they have an AOT in here but I dought it.
my Son had a crisis team in California after he was discharged last year from Hospital but he did not want to stay in CA because he was not comfortable staying with Family friend.

Check with your health department, that’s how the AOT team got involved. Look up ASSISTED OUT PATIENT on the web.

Good luck!

I think this is the right thing to do. Good luck!

Hey there. I’m So So sorry you are going through this! I have a son that’s sick too. I don’t know what you should do. Is there a good inpatient program anywhere he could get accepted? It’s just so hard to find a good place where they’re not going g to just drug him up. My son was in hospital 2 years ago almost to this date. We could not get him out for anything. We have such good insurance the doctors at hospital were milking it for $10,000 a day! They didn’t cate about my son. They just wanted the money. It is sickening! I’m so wore out with everything. I swear it is never ending. I am sure you are feeling the same.
Do you have conservatorship now?
When you say someone had conservatorship for 2 and a half years. How did someone other than you get conservatorship? We are in California and I’m filing for medical and psychiatric conservatorship for my son this week.
I’m going to wait until I hear back from you to file. I can’t take a chance of state picking it up. All of this just scares the crap out of me.
I don’t want anyone else over my son.

1 Like

First of all, I want to acknowledge that you have been there for your son these many years. You are a courageous woman! Take care of yourself.

I have four suggestions:

  1. NAMI- the last time our daughter was hospitalized before, during and afterwards, I connected with a NAMI representative and it was a huge help. This was in Illinois so I don’t know what NAMI is like in Arkansas. It is worth getting the support you need.

  2. Attorney -also this last time my oldest daughter hired an attorney who knows the system. It’s not cheap but it seemed to help this time.
    One of his suggestions is that it’s like a three legged stool. You have to have all the three legs to make it work. Hospitalization/Medication/Outpatient care.
    You can involuntary mandate his hospitalization but unless besides getting the meds he needs if he doesn’t get the followup support and care it isn’t completely balanced. There are a number of outpatient programs but check out them in your area. This could be part of the agreement by your son for release from the hospital besides taking his medication.

  3. Family and Friends - do you have others to help support your son that can work with you? We had some family therapy this last time to focus on our daughter’s concerns. I do have family and lots of friends who listen to me and pray for and with me regarding my daughter. Part of the problem with mental illness is the stigma that comes along with it. It’s a ‘no casserole’ disease or illness. Also I want to respect my daughter about who I share this with as it’s her story but it does overlap with my story.

  4. Education - NAMI offers classes for family support and has monthly support sessions.
    I learn a lot through books and video clips on mental illness. One book in particular has been impactful - I don’t need help; I’m not sick by Dr. Amador. He uses the LEAP process of Listen, Empathize, Agree, Plan.
    Also I’ve spent time listening to my daughter and I’ve learned a lot from her what it’s like to have Schizophrenia during her psychosis and the anxiety about trusting her thinking and how she’d like to be helped.

REMEMBER: Your son is a person dealing with Schizophrenia and he is not a Schizophrenic person. There is a subtle difference in how we think about and treat all persons dealing with a mental illness.

4 Likes