Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Looking for advice - son back in hospital


#1

So my son is back in the hospital. The last two times we have seen slight improvement, but then he becomes non-compliant when he gets home and can’t understand why he is losing all of his friends. His family doesn’t talk with him much anymore because they don’t understand his illness, and he is very sad. I am the only person who he talks to in the family now, so what is about to take place could really damage the trust between us, but it has to be done, and I need some advice.

He is at a different hospital this time. First, they made him take a shower and brush his teeth. A miracle. Then, the doctor called me this morning and introduced himself. I told him that I was in the process of going for temporary guardianship because of the severity of his illness, but that I still needed a physician’s letter and he offered to write one. I couldn’t believe it.

Then, he told me he was going to go to the courts in order to get my son court-ordered to take an injection. He mentioned Invega and Abilify. I told him my son has a very bad taste in his mouth from his Invega experience, so he is going to suggest Abilify (any thoughts on this appreciated as well). I have to show up at the courthouse next Thursday in order to testify with the doctor that indeed my son needs this to happen. I’ll ask his father to go as well.

I have eight days before we go to the courthouse and I would like to start a conversation with him during our visits leading up, that might help me explain to him why I think this needs to be done. I just want him to try and understand. I think he has almost no insight. He’ll be twenty in November.

I have never had anyone offer to help so much, and I am so grateful to this doctor who seems to sincerely want to help him ( wanted to know his interests this morning …amazing)

Looking for ways to have his conversation.

Thank you…


#2

I feel all this might upset him, but if it needs to be done to keep him and others safe, then it needs to be done.

I’m not quite sure what would be the easiest way to talk to him about it. I’ll keep you in my thoughts.


#3

I Personally Never Had ANY Issues With INVEGA ,

But We All Sorta Different , At Least On Tha Surface … ,

I Am Currently ALSO On Abilify (among others) , No Problems To Report From Here With That One … ,

There Shouldn’t Be A Secrete With How To Be Cool With A Young One Going Throo Schizophrenia … ,

Give Her/him Space , LISSEN TO WHAT THEY HAVE TO SAY , and Jus Relax and Be Cool … ,

A Normal Conversation While Watching Tha Football Gayme During A Peaceful Evening Would Be Quite Alright … ,

and if He Gets Bored and Walks Out Of Tha Room , Then Write A Note To Him , and Blah Blah Blah … ,

Give Space and Lissen To his Words … ,

because Being Entrapped On All Sides Is Naught Fun … ,

I Have Felt It and Trust Me … , It Isn’t Fun … ,

So Be Cool and Drop Out Of School ,

Yep Yep …


#4

and Then THERE"S THIS .

Ok Lemme Jus Say You and e(Y)e Will Nvr See Eye To Eye On Thus One … ,

But Imma Share You A V(Y)D ,

and It Stars Your Son … , Once Thus Is Finished … ,

Good Luck and After It Is Over , He Mite Naught Have Much To Say To You Ever Again … ,

But Thus Is Jus An Opinion From Someone Whos Does Care About Him …


#5

It is always terrible when someone is so far gone they need a court ordered injection. I don’t think anything you say will make him feel better. It all depends on whether or not the Abilify helps him. When he starts to feel better, he will probably be thankful that you pulled him back to reality. Abilify can do great things, but every brain is different, so you never know how he will react.

Good luck with everything.


#6

Dear Holly67, I am a parent to a 21 yo and new to the forum. I hope all of this works out for your son and you.

Something I am interested in is the genetic testing to see which medications and dosages would be most suitable for my son’s metabolism, if he does decide to try medication again. Is the testing an option for the long term? Has anyone on the forum found this testing useful or helpful?

If I didn’t believe I was ill and was put in a hospital and forcibly treated, I would be really upset, to say the least. Here’s the question my family members would be considering: What if the treatment works? I have no idea what I would be thinking/ experiencing.

If your son is so ill that a judge orders him to take medication, maybe the “why” conversation happens later. Maybe you and/ or the doctor tells your son what is happening and asks whether he has any questions. If you don’t know the answers, try to find out. If possible, get your son any information he requests.

Our Family’s Experience (out of place in your thread? if so, I apologize):
After a police hold during his third major psychotic episode in a year and a half, our son spent two weeks in Psychiatric ICU. The insurance company “dumped” him out of the hospital while suicidal, experiencing distressing hallucinations, having extreme paranoia, and terrified by persecutory delusions. We begged state social services for any help because we do not know how to help. At their prompting, the doctor placed our son in an outpatient program, but our son believed it was a government set up to assassinate him. The intake person told us to take him back to the hospital, but he would not go. Since he was very ill, but somewhat able to control his behavior, social services told us he could not be involuntarily hospitalized unless he met legal criteria (fair enough! I don’t think anyone should have their rights removed unless there is danger. Plus, if a person is going to be traumatized by hospitalization and also NOT treated, then why do it unless for immediate safety?).

We spent months trying to reestablish a feeling of basic safety. The first couple months required someone (a family member or friend) around the clock. He chose to stop attending treatment and discontinued medication, but is doing pretty well. I am proud of him and all he has done to help himself. He changed many of the behaviors that led to forced hospitalization. He still has debilitating symptoms and stresses. I would like him to receive truly helpful care.

CATCH UP ON SLEEP is my advice. For some reason sleep helps with problem solving as well as physical health.

All best wishes and hopes for your family.


#7

Thank you for the response.

This link was recently posted in the News Forum http://forum.schizophrenia.com/t/more-harm-than-good-genetic-mental-health-tests . Might be worth a look.

I realize that he will become upset, however, he is completely non-compliant. He thinks weed will solve everything, but it makes him so much more delusional. My son, up until yesterday, had not showered in a year. He stated that it was because he didn’t think it was necessary - “caveman didn’t bathe” - is his normal response. However, I think he is paranoid of what is in the water. I fought a lengthy cancer battle and that situation has added to his paranoia.

I feel as though we are running out of options as it seems that I read more and more the importance of early treatment which is what I am attempting. To actually have a doctor take a sincere interest in him is mind-blowing. Even he was thrown by my son’s appearance. He looks like he could be homeless.

I agree about people having rights, but in this case, he needs someone to step in and do something which will hopefully allow him to begin to see his illness. Otherwise, I think something very bad will happen to him, and I have to exhaust every option I can.

My hope is that once he can clean up his appearance, people may be more friendly to him and he won’t feel so isolated. Anything is better than where he is now and I am feeling hopeful, just concerned about our relationship. I think if I didn’t take these steps and something happened, I would regret not having done so.


#8

Thank you. I feel very much the same as you and your post is encouraging.


#9

I’m pretty sure it will upset him.
Thanks for keeping us in your thoughts.


#10

What did he do to get court-ordered injections. The hell? Isn’t that a violating of human rights? Since when has it ever been okay to court-order an injection against someone’s will? Mentally disabled persons have rights too…


#11

Thank you for the link, Holly67. There is so much to learn.


#12

The court ordered injections I had were Trilafon, aka Perphenazine. I’m better now. Yeah, I had a doctor who went the extra mile with me!

Jayster


#13

I would not care if I was hospitalized against my “will.” Your son is down a deep dank hole and injections are the only way to get him out of it. I expressly encourage my family to take the quick acting approach to get me on the right medication. He loses the ability for the medication to work the longer he is off it. Psychosis can have lasting effects.

As far as explaining things to him goes, I’d just tell him that you are getting him help. It might take a while to have him come back to reality, but I hope he will soon.


#14

Thanks for sharing. It helps so much to hear this.


#15

Thank you. I talked with my NAMI group, who knows what his life is like, and they are all encouraging too. I think I’ll just tell him what you said. I am trying to get him the help he needs and I hope someday he will understand. I was thinking of an analogy too. We foster kittens in our house, but we take kittens that are very ill. We have to put drops in their eyes five -six times a day and antibiotics twice/day - plus they have to be cleaned and have a lot of demands, but over time they heal, and play, and get to be kittens again. He’s seen the process and sometimes help.
I had a good conversation with him tonight when he called. He seems to be doing okay in the hospital. The socialization helps.


#16

I think I would have a conversation with him a couple weeks after the injections and talk straight to him like he is an adult. This is what tough love is all about. You have to be real firm with him and have him keep taking his medicine and listen to him if he tells you his medicine is having side effects that are bad. My main point is talk to him like he is an adult, even thought he acts like a rebel child, that might get him to respond.


#17

Good luck to your son. It’s amazing you have a doc that is including you in on the conversation. My Mom had to fight a lot of red tape and other paper work to find out what was going on with me.

When I was hospitalized against my will… I was furious. I did take it out on my family. I stewed in anger for a long time. But eventually with meds… and with therapy… things started to come back around.

I had no insight for a long time… and that was what made it hard for me to understand why this was happening.

After the meds started kicking in for longer… and really finding out what was happening in my brain… I started coming around. I’m afraid you might hit some of that anger from your son.

There is a very good shot (since you have a doc that seems to care and is working with you as a team) that when the meds kick in and your son stabilizes… that anger will go away.

Good luck and I’m rooting for you.


#18

Thank you! :relaxed:

I wish I could show him your post…


#19

Will probably be much easier to have the conversation once he’s getting his court ordered injections. You may want to have the conversation twice


#20

NAMI is a great group. I was surprised they even had a page for my state, moreso that it was very well maintained and organised