My son wont take his meds


My son diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia 3 years ago ,It has been a road of hell.
He will not stay on his meds,The last expose he took my truck and drove it 330 miles away to the CIA office to get a new Identity. He has been in 8 different hospitals and I just can’t make them see what is going on.
We talked of a group home and he refused, I have had him committed 3 times and it seems for awhile he does well then its back down hill .I can’t continue to care for him ,I am a widow and work 10 hours a day he is 38 years old and my only child…Maybe some one here can direct me to the help we need for him and me. I feel like I am slipping away in to his world of darkness…


Welcome to the forum.

Have you ever looked into injections? Some people prefer this route as it takes the stress off for remembering when to take oral medications and therefore helps with stability. My son was diagnosed 3 years ago. Currently he is mostly medication compliant but unfortunately it is something that he had to come to terms with. We discuss his medications in terms of anxiety instead of schizophrenia. They help him to deal with his anxiety symptoms.

These websites may help if you have not looked at them before: - under resources are free videos on using LEAP
LEAP is a way of communicating to build trust. Listen-Empathize-Agree-Partner. - Dr. Xavier Amador is a clinical psychologist whose brother had schizophrenia. He is the founder of the LEAP Institute. Wrote the book: I’m Not Sick I Don’t Need Help! Can buy from his website.
Search Xavier Amador and LEAP on and you should find some long videos - under problems you will see anosognosia
Anosognosia looks like denial but is different.

I know during my son’s last admission in September that he was told that if he returned within a short period of time that he would be put on injections. I’m guessing through an outpatient community treatment order (CTO). In the US I think it’s called assisted outpatient treatment (AOT).


The doctors started him on it ,but with all the hospital stays he discover he has the right not to take that shot .He now said that shot gave him aids. .So he has an app in the morning hoping things goes good ,he will not let me attend with him…


You may find some information here on how to deal with this:

I hope you don’t mind me asking some questions. Does your son work and does he live with you? Does he accept having schizophrenia?

My son just turned 20 and lives with me. Since diagnoses he has been used to someone being a part of his appointments so I have been lucky in that respect as I attend appointments with his psychiatrist. I’m wondering if he does live with you if you could somehow make it part of the conditions that while living with you that you get to attend meetings and be a part of his treatment. It seems with my son that if he doesn’t want me attending then it’s usually because he doesn’t want me telling someone my version of the truth. Especially if paranoia is in play and he thinks I’m going to exaggerate symptoms. Sometimes he will ask me to not talk about something and I tell him that I will do my best to not say anything. It sounds like your son is dealing with some paranoia if he thinks the shots gave him aids.

Something that I have tried to work on with my son is how we discuss schizophrenia and medications. To a certain degree he accepts that he has schizophrenia in terms of paranoia and different thinking but doesn’t feel that it is something that needs to be fixed. I don’t disagree with him on this. Not to long ago I asked one of his nurses to talk to him about what the medications are trying to do. Not fix him but instead help to regulate some of his neurotransmitters as he may be producing too much or too little dopamine, serotonin or glutomate. Medications can not change his belief system. I try to compare it to myself and tinctures that I take to help with menopausal symptoms or what my husband takes to help with anxiety symptoms. We are not broken but not functioning at our best. I do my best to assure my son that I don’t want to change him or his beliefs.

Are you taking time for yourself?

I hope his app this morning went well.


Ahh I see,I understand how hard this is on you a bit,but if you do choose not to deal with it any longer it could have a really bad effect on him,it would if my parents did that.
I think you should go to the doctor with him and explain exactly what is going on and he should be able to help, talk to your son also why he doesn’t want to take his medication and try to come to an agreement or see what’s best
For him and his interests.


Yes I went with him today, on top of everything else the said he also has PTSD and prescribed him a medication for that… I understand what you are saying but its hard I am the only parent now his father died from an overdose of methadone…I stay depressed and it has affected all my relationships what is a person to do? I love him and want what is good for him, but I also want my life back, I hope that does not sound selfish but it has taken its toll on me…Thanks


He lives with me and you cant never convince him he is sick, He has what they call Negative Paranoid schizophrenia.So he appears like nothing is wrong they said it was the hardest to treat, We have had this talk and I really hope it has sinked in. So today they said he also has PTSD and prescribed a medication for that Also he is older he is 38.It now stands as of today if he fails to take his med he will no longer be able to stay with me When he is off his meds he thinks I am not his mother but a murder and that some scary stuff, I sleep with my doors locked and that’s not good, on the other hand when he is on his meds we get along great ,like today as we sat waiting he put his arm around me/So child like… I know my sweet son is in there some where but where… …as for me I work 10 hours a day 5 days a week and no I have no one to help me and no outlet…when not working and taking care of the house I am so tired and yes I am tired…Thanks so much for your response…


no he cant work he is on total disability…sad he wants to so bad…


Try using LEAP. See if you can build on the love that you two obviously share. It’s got to be hard carrying all this on your own. Try to find some time for yourself. Even if it’s only 10-15 minutes of some sort of meditation or meditative breathing. Watching a funny movie. Something to lift your own spirits. I don’t know where you live but see if they have any type of ACT or PACT program in your area. They may be able to help take some of the stress off you by helping him with some things.


My solution to my son’s non-compliance was to get guardianship. Once I had guardianship, he was started on a shot. He has been much more compliant even with oral meds now that he knows I am calling some of the shots. (No pun intended!)


can I do that to a grown man?


its very hard doing this alone. I feel I can’t go away for any amount of time, when I do make plans he always does this… oh mom you going to leave me here alone, So quilt set in and I stay home ,only to watch tv and him in his room .its not fair to me… I am already feeling like I am grieving I cant find any happiness knowing he is like he is and there is nothing I can do to make it all better…


About that I’ve heard that for certain mental illnesses it is classed as disability,do you know what he in the UK I would be able to claim for it? @joelsgirlkathy


He is on total disability…To day was not a good day he rant and was talking about the fbi…for sure 1 day of changed med would not set him off.It started when he woke me up real early …time to get up…now I work 10 hours every night,then it was don’t go to work I told him I have to work,then all hell broke loose …I just try to calm him but that never seems to work,he said that I had a tone in my voice that pisses him off,Truely I am scared of him…I have tried everything I know,what else can I do??


I have not gone the guardianship route but I have looked into it a little bit, just in case. Yes you can do this for a grown man. If he was a minor you wouldn’t need to, I don’t think. If you search guardianship on they have some information. If in Canada I think there is information in the Mental Health Act regarding this. There is some information here on this:

When my son wasn’t doing well there were a lot of times that he would comment on my tone of voice or facial expressions. That I was mad or upset. When not doing well there are a lot of emotions that can not be accounted for and since he doesn’t understand that that negativity is actually coming from himself then it gets transferred to you. Is there a concern of him becoming physically violent? If you do not feel safe than I think that needs to be addressed. It doesn’t seem like he is in a good spot right now and I don’t think that can’t be ignored both for your own safety and for his sake as well.


I have been down every road to get help for him and me… The answer I get is to take him to a homeless shelter… Then he becomes everyone else’s problem,that’s not what I want to do…so I want to find housing for him… social services want a group home and if it was people with the same issues it would work out better but its full of recovering drug users…its a no win situation…


When things were bad with my son I ran into this. If I wanted him out of the home I was given the option of calling the police and having him taken to a shelter. Although they couldn’t guarantee him entering anyways just take him to the door. This is not what I wanted although one of the shelters had some good services including professional onsite staff for dealing with mental health crisis. When I looked into group homes. Closest one was all elderly people and the best one I could find had long wait periods for the provincially covered health section or pay a lot out of pocket for the private section. Yes it is a tough situation.