Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Not a Lot of Local Support, What Should I Do?

A friend of mine showed up at my door a week ago, saying that she’s unemployed and homeless, and wanted to know if she could stay with me until she got back on her feet. I agreed, and it seems highly likely that she is suffering from schizophrenia (or a similar condition). She’s arguing (loudly) with ancient Mesopotamian gods and telling me that she’s been chosen to save various gods.

Her family are basically useless (her mother has some form of mental illness as well) and her father doesn’t really seem to think that there’s anything that can be done. In checking around, there almost nothing in the area in the way of support networks (partially due to the pandemic, but even without it, there’d still be very little). I don’t know how I can get her to seek out professional help, and I don’t know a whole lot that I can do to try and support her mentally and emotionally without her having professional help.

just ride it out, never ever get mad at her, never raise your voice, no matter how crazy unless you get a butcher knife in the gut, never turn your back to a SZ…

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How well do you know your friend’s medical history? Have you yourself spoken to your friend’s father? There’s a chance that your friend is in the middle of a medical emergency situation. If I had a friend show up disoriented as your friend has, an ER would be my first idea.

It is very nice of you to let her stay with you but if she does not get a job she will never get back on her feet. Getting a job will be impossible if she has schizophrenia and is delusional. I personally would not take on such a huge responsibility. What if she never leaves? I would speak with her dad even if he thinks there is nothing to do. He should at least be the one to provide her with shelter.

I know a few details about her medical history, and while I haven’t spoken to her father recently, I know him well enough to know he’s not much help. As for the ER, my friend doesn’t pose an imminent threat to herself or others, so there’s likely little they could do. The closest hospital is currently overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases so they’re highly unlikely to even consider admitting her.

are you saying her father would not provide her with shelter and food?

Without treatment, the likelihood of her being able to get a job is pretty low. Her family will not provide a supportive environment for her. I’ve been homeless, and it’s not something that I would wish on anyone. I am her best chance at being able to get back on her feet, she also knows this, otherwise she wouldn’t have shown up at my door. I am less concerned about her not leaving than I am about a friend of mine winding up dead because no one was willing to help her. Surely you can understand this. There’s a lot wrong in this world that I cannot change, but at least I can help one person who is suffering.

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I understand what you mean now. You are a good person. There should be more people like you in the world.

My concern is that your friend is in a different medical crisis. A person can go willingly to an ER. Step one is being diagnosed and ruling out other possibilities.

I would first have to be able to convince her to go to the ER. She doesn’t think that anything is wrong with her.

You have something your friend wants, it’s okay to lay out some expectations or ultimatums.

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I agree. You are letting your friend stay with you. Maybe after she has had a week to decompress she would be more willing to go to the ER with you. You should give her a choice. Stay with me and get checked out in the ER or you can only stay with me for another ( Blank) amount of time.

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I totally agree and think that a good plan .

You could also call 211 for advise or NAMI helpline .