Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

My sz son just had a fire in his studio apt


My son is 32, he’s lived 2 wks in his own apt (recently got out of jail from last 6 mos), landlord called today asking if I’m sure my son can live alone because he accidentally started a fire on stovetop. I know he cannot take care of himself, but he says he can, he’s not on medication due to ssi being cancelled due to incarceration. I’m overwhelmed with no where to turn. He’s constantly calling me for money to go out with, he calls drunk most of the time. I need help/suggestions.


@Dreamer1 Depending on where you live there are places that will see to it that your son has his medication whether or not he can pay. Also, have you looked into restarting his benefits?


There are group home settings for individuals with disabilities that you may be able to access. He will need his social security and medicaid in order to get access to services though. Take him to your local social services office and get him back on ssi and medicaid. Best wishes!


While my son was unmedicated, and even when he was medicated but the meds were not working, I went through similar situations with him going thru a string of apartments. Like you, I would be the one finding the apartments.

If he continues to put himself and others at risk with behaviors such as starting fires, he is a danger to himself and others, and could be admitted to the hospital for treatment. They may be able to keep him for a longer time to stabilize him. One of my son’s longer hospital stays was under similar circumstances.

I encourage you to stand firm on not providing money for alcohol. I provided gift cards for my son to a small natural foods store that doesn’t sell alcohol, and occasional gift cards to places like Starbucks. I also provided groceries.

Most residential care facilities are likely to require your son to be receiving SSI and Medicaid. Otherwise, the cost to pay for it privately is likely to be pretty high. But IF your son does return for hospitalization, and he allows you to communicate with the social workers, they are probably your best resource for investigating alternative housing settings. Even if your son doesn’t grant you permission, you are still able to communicate TO them any of your concerns. They just can’t share information back with you.


Yes, he finally gave me his release paperwork, took him 4 wks to give to me. Now I did what I had to do reporting it to Soc Sec Ofc, now it’ll take 6 wks to reinstate ssi/Medicaid. Isn’t that terrible that a sick person has to wait 6 wks to get help/medication? My concern is, without medication he’ll probably end up back in jail because he is very psychotic without meds. Our system is definitely broken.


Unfortunately, my son refuses hospitalization. His father (we are divorced) is against it also. I am considered evil for even suggesting it. That is what I have to deal with. I’m at my lowest, don’t know what to do, where to turn.


@Dreamer1 where are you located at? maybe I can help you find one of those places that provides free psych meds…they are in most major cities and suburbs…if you know where to go…Maybe they can prescribe based on previous medicines that worked…


@Dreamer1 Have you not been able to get guardianship?. I think it would be fairly easy to do given the situation and the history. When my son was at his worst and I had to get guardianship and force hospitalization etc…he always hated me then…I made it my motto that if he “hated me” I was obviously on the right path, and I was…and eventually it turned out pretty well and today he doesn’t recall ever hating me. Follow your instincts as a mom, they’re usually right.


Sometimes you have to be the evil one. I know I’ve had to be!

If he is a danger to himself or others, hospitalization may not be optional. Yes, he will hate you for it, and your ex will too (I have an ex as well, who never had a clue until he was sure he could ‘fix’ things, and took on care of our son for a while. Guess who has responsibility now?)


San Antonio, Tx. I would appreciate any suggestions you have. I’ve called places but no help, cuz no insurance. He should get reinstated w/Medicaid in 4 wks. Thank you.


How do you get guardianship?


@Dreamer1 About Free mental health care and meds until your son’s Medicaid starts again…Communicare is on this list at several locations in San Antonio and they offer sliding fee scale based on your income and of course no income would be likely zero cost…it says that it takes people with no insurance and behavioral health is on its list as it is with some of the others…it’s worth a try, I assumed you were Bexar county… I will let you know if I find anything else. Here is one more that may or may not be on the list I gave you the link for: CentroMed - Southside Medical
3750 Commercial Ave
San Antonio TX 78221
Website Accepts: Uninsured, Underinsured, Insurance, Medicare, Medicaid
Income: All income levels accepted
Fees: Sliding scale available
Languages Spoken: English Spanish Services include: Women’s Health Services, Primary Care, Pediatric Services, OB/GYN, Counseling/Mental Health Services, Medical Services, Dental Services, Lab Services
Hours: Monday - Friday
Service Area: Bexar County


@Dreamer1 About getting guardianship --contact your local county probate court for details-they should be able to answer your questions for you–here is a link …check the drop down boxes at the top especially the one that says “Mental Health” and the one that says “Contact Us” …


@Catherine, I called all 12 clinics for mental health issues & can you believe 8 #'s were no longer in service, 1 said they only see children, 1 said they are not taking new patients, 2 said behavior analysts do not prescribe meds. It is so difficult to get help for our loved ones, I’m starting to think that is why alot of sick people just give up and end up in the streets. Wish our politicians would change our system in America. Thank you for your kind help.


@Dreamer1 I am incredibly sad to hear that outcome…unbelievable…I will see if I can find something more up to date.


I agree that our system is broken. so sad