Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Need help, to hospitalize via police or not?


#1

I need help! I have been agonizing over this decision and don’t know what to do! My adult brother suddenly developed paranoid delusions a few years ago, but he is very high functioning so he has had no real hospitalizations ( once he had called the police himself because of his paranoia and they took him to the hospital and he was discharged the next day). We have no family here and I don’t even live in the same province as him (we live in Canada).

I put my life on hold, because he is now about to lose his house since he hasn’t been able to work in a few years to see if I can get him hospitalized and get a proper diagnosis and treatment. He will not cooperate at all, he thinks I’ve been involved with all the “games and plans”, and I’m desperate and left with only 2 choices: 1) go to court, et an order for an involuntary assessment which means the police will go get him to the hospital or 2) leave, and see how this tragedy continues to unfold

He seems to be in a better phase of his illness, sometimes he is very aggressive, constantly swearing and yelling, but right now he just doesn’t talk, he laughs to himself, sometimes gets mad at random strangers, and is not doing anything else! I just need some advice from people who have gone through this, please help me!


#2

I’d read this ( https://en.wikipedia.org/?title=Social_programs_in_Canada ) and see where it takes you vis who to contact in his province about what’s best to do there. Information is power… but you may well be up against some limitations. There are times when family members can do little else but let the sz pt (rather like the drug addict) set themselves up to slip into the clutches of the system.


#3

I recommend you contact the local Schizophrenia Society of Canada office - and talk to them about the process and find out any risks, etc. Many police in Canada are well-trained in how to deal with the mentally ill but you want to make sure they don’t over-react.

They will be able to help you plan for this and look at all the different options:

Here is a list of provincial offices - call the closest one to you and see if there is one in your city also (they will be able to tell you):

http://www.schizophrenia.ca/provincial.php


#4

Thanks for the response! I’ve already spoken to them, and they didn’t have any specific suggestion, just went over the same options basically!


#5

OK - well perhaps you can attend a schizophrenia society meeting in your city and talk with other people who have been in the same situation as you have and get their thoughts and feedback.

I’ve talked with other people in the same situation as you in Canada - and what they’ve done is gone down to the police and talked to them (find out who the policemen are that would come to his house - find out if they have special training on mental illness and find out how they would handle it). Talk with the mental health facility where he would be taken.

Also - prepare a written diary of all the mental health history of your brother - so you can share that with the key people. Read up here:

http://schizophrenia.com/family/FAQgen.htm#denial

and here:

http://schizophrenia.com/invol.html

Find out what will happen after he gets into treatment. Find out the best treatment options in your city - again, it helps to talk with parents / family members. Try to get recommendations for psychiatrists, programs, etc.

Don’t give up - its really hard but your brother needs treatment.


#6

As a sufferer, I usually harbor feelings of resentment for awhile after someone calls the police on me. That being said, if you are worried about your brother and feel he needs help especially if you feel he may harm others or himself then I would look into it. He may hate you for awhile should it happen. Let him know that you care about him and were unsure of what to do as you are not trained to deal with these things and have less experience than professionals who deal with it. Over time I realized, well there are times my reality is simply distorted, and most people who call the police are afraid because they do not know what is going on. When a family member calls it is more often because they care. I have learned to let go of the resentment. Make sure to ask for members of the authority who have experience with the mentally ill. Quite a few years ago when, a police officer pulled a gun on me, I was laying down in a loft upstairs and apparently got up too quickly for his comfort and must have surprised him by coming into view (despite him still being a floor below), things could have turned out ugly, luckily I was calm and did not react badly, I was like, “Whoa! I’m unarmed!” I made a point to let them know I did not have any thoughts of harming myself or others. Psychosis isn’t all about violence, it is more about a loss of touch with reality. Also, try to be there to calm and comfort your brother in whichever way possible should it come to that. During moments of fear and psychosis we can be a little more impulsive and unpredictable. They may have to subdue him should he react badly. Do your best to be strong. I know my fellow schizophrenics may dislike the idea of having another person deal with the police and an involuntary hold. Sometimes though, there is nothing much you can do if you have not developed an understanding and system of coping with your relative in order not to have to go to such extremes.

Hopefully it does not come down to this, but if it does, be strong, let your brother know you felt it was in his best interest at that moment.


#7

Yea, verily. Strongly endorsed.


#8

So have I, but if they hadn’t, I wouldn’t be here on this forum, pretty likely. Because I have cleaned out the entire med cab twice.

“It’s great to be here. It’s great to be anywhere.” – Keith Richards


#9

Glad you are still around. I find your posts very knowledgeable and straight forward.


#10

Thank you all so much for your responses. I really really appreciate it. I’m so scared and can’t stop crying today because I’m scared if the police come and he will be completely traumatized, will think they are fake and might try to defend himself, I’m worried things will escalate. I’m also worried that the hospital will just discharge him and not keep him or treat him at all after all of this. I feel so lost and starting to feel helpless. I just love him so much and he has been deteriorating for years with no help, I don’t know what to do!


#11

I don’t know what the laws are in Canada concerning forcible commitments. I’ve been hospitalized via the police here in Oklahoma several times. In Oklahoma you have the right to be tried by a jury of six people to see if you need to be forcibly committed. I’ve gone that route several times. I never got out of my commitment. I feel like I am no worse for these forcible commitments. I needed it to be impressed upon me that I had to take medications. It’s possible your brother might need to be forcibly committed several times before he realizes he has to take med’s. The sooner you begin this wretched business, the sooner you will get it over with.