Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Letter to a lawyer

I’m wondering what I can do for my sister

Clare is 41 has late onset major depression, ptsd, emotionally unstable personality disorder, anxiety, alcoholism and enduring psychosis for 7 years. She is usually suicidal and is prone to inflicting extreme self injury, and more recently a return to severe bulimia, she was previously anorexic.

Our 77 year old mum takes care of everything

Our middle sister (of 3 of us), Harriet, was 12 years psychotic before going in hospital for 2 years from where she escaped and was hit by a car and killed, aged 25 which my mum blames herself for her death putting her in a place she didn’t want to be

My mum now does not try to get my sister sectioned, and I have had little to no support in helping. She has spoken to my con, and care coordinators previously but with one chat she gives up.

My sister will not seek anything outside relationship no friend, peer support, doctors, mental health services, AA nothing occasionally goes to try to find a new life and relocates for a few weeks or months

We have had people round to help, nurses, ambulance

over 7 years we have tried everything

One police officer said that suicide is not a crime and that my sister has the right to do it as an adult

One officer coaxed me to say that because of self injury she may indeed have a knife so then we had to wait for 4 riot police

Ambulances have been called to ask for help, once when she was unresponsive and he said something about loving to help and then had another call I think

My sister plans to commit suicide when our mum dies

We all know this it’s accepted

Clare does not for want mum to go through losing another daughter.



Whether the police are negligent or illegally damaging


Is it worth it in reality to forcibly section someone who is so totally non compliant?


Could having an advocate help me?

I have mild autism and schizophrenia… I often muddle my words,

especially around Clare or authority figures and wonder if there were to be contact with medical personnel or even yourself as a lawyer…


Should I myself have a guardianship status for Clare?

She is 100% dependant on our Mum

And I could perhaps help her with finances and help with practicalities of life, as soon as mum becomes incapacitated

I think maybe I need to do something about this. perhaps guardianship if it is the best thing before our mum can no longer help.

Clare believes my husband is getting all my money for himself and will leave me with nothing and give to the Church and that his 85yr old mother is in on it.

Frankly she doesn’t trust him so it might be difficult to get her consent

  1. What state do you live in? You can ask for the Crisis team to come. Tell them you are scared of what she might do to injure you or herself. Tell them she cannot stay there. This should lead to a 5150 or involuntary hold. Once she is at the hospital ask for a social worker. Tell the social worker she cannot come back home and needs more treatment. Once you say she has no place to love that makes her bravely disabled and I think that forces them to keep her.

Some people have reported throwing a chair over so when police arrive it looks like their love one is out of hand.

  1. Yes, ask for clozapine. If she is sectioned at the hospital that makes it easier for you to ask the social worker how to get guardianship over her. This varies by state. If the social worker isn’t helpful ask for a patient advocate or the supervising social worker.

  2. Yes, ask for a patient advocate or social worker to help you. I find social workers offer me the most help when dealing with the hospital. I also write down all medicines; hospitalizations, and symptoms so I have it at all times to provide to health professionals.

  3. Maybe ask for her to have a guardian but have it be the state or county so you can continue being her sister and not her guardian.

I’m still trying to figure this stuff out. I hope these suggestions help you.

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The laws in your state can make a big difference. So you have to find out what they are. I’m including a link to the Treatment Advocacy Center…especially for its “Grading the States” page. This is a good site to follow, regardless.

You can call and talk to a lawyer to ask if they believe they can help you. Be respectful of their time, but you have a right to present enough information so they can give you an indication if they can help you or not. Do NOT pay a huge retainer upfront until you have actually met with the lawyer. (I learned the hard way.)

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I’m in UK
Thank you so much I just see her non compliance like she has in the past screamed if a social worker or doctor arrives to get out
They just leave
She is at the moment running away from jail with her probation making threats, because she has a place in London and my mums place in the west

I’m 5 hrs away and don’t have a number for her

She has returned to her flat where tenants have bypassed the electric meter and she has been threatened nearly £3000

She is on her own, knows nobody in London any mire

Thank you for your post
A lawyer just to chat would be good

I’m sorry this is such a difficult journey for all of us.

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