Hi Nero. I’m sorry you’re all going through this with your son. He sounds a lot like our son did at the beginning, except that our son is paranoid. We dealt with the druggie “friends” by contacting all of their parents. Our son was mortified, but it needed to happen. His druggie friends all dropped him, but that was going to happen anyways since our son’s paranoid delusions made him absolutely miserable to be around. Eventually, all his sports buddies dropped him too. Everyone knows he’s ill now.
Our son continued to think he could smoke pot and not be scared, but it wasn’t ever going to happen. Eventually, he learned and just stopped smoking. It was a miracle.
There’s something many doctors and researchers refer to as Duration of Untreated Psychosis (DUP). Apparently, the longer the DUP, the worse the outcome. I wish I had known about this early on because I would’ve found a way to force meds a lot earlier. Eventually I called the police on my son and a judge forced the treatment. We’ve continued to battle med non-compliance since the start, but our son is now on monthly injections, as of 3 months ago.
I know you’ve read a lot about side effects of the AP meds and some of these side effects may occur, but your child’s brain, sanity, and safety are at stake. In my opinion, do whatever you can do to get him on AP meds. I hear you when you say you “respect his opinion” about not wanting to take meds, but his illness makes him unable to make rational decisions to take care of himself. His opinion is not based on clear, rational thinking. He probably doesn’t even know he’s ill. My son doesn’t either, when he’s unmedicated.
Try to have hope that you will get your old son back. Good luck.