Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Psychiatric hospitals


Does anyone have any tips on dealing with psychiatric hospitals? Even though I am legal guardian of my adult son, finding out treatment plans, keeping up with personal belongings, having input into medication decisions, etc. always seems sooo difficult. My son is in a facility where he was not even allowed to have deodorant. A lot of that depends on who is working at the time, but when asked reasons am told “rules.” Very frustrating when it seems there is no compassion for the patient.


I was in hospital for 6 months. In the beginning I could not have anything. Not even my cellphone. But when I “behaved” and showed progress I got more and more “freedom” behind locked doors. In the end I even had my computer! But this is in Sweden.


You don’t say what country your son got locked up in. Here in Oklahoma hospital stays have gotten a lot shorter. That bit about the deodorant probably has something to do with suicide prevention. They can go pretty far in eliminating things with which you might commit suicide. I don’t know why, but it seemed like every time I went to the hospital the length of my stay was much longer than the other’s. I’m quiet and withdrawn, but I don’t know why that would keep me in the hospital. It seemed like the ones who did the shortest time were the outgoing ones.


That’s my experience in hospitals too. When I co-operated and went along with their rules I gained more freedom and privileges.


I’m from oklahoma too


Hospital stays are always stressful. The rules have gotten so difficult - cant bring anything in at all anymore, other than clothes and books. No food. No electronics.

Try to develop a relationship with one or more people on the staff who can help you keep track of things.



This is in no way a form of positive treatment.

Ask them to put the rules on paper.


rules in psych hospital suck. BUt sometimes if yoy ask the right psych nurse you can get round them.


Unfortunately because he is an adult there’s the issue of confidentiality. I’ve never been on your side of the fence as I’ve always been the patient. I know I always had to sign papers so that my mom could be kept in the loop. I also was never allowed to have anything with alcohol in it so maybe that’s the issue with the deodorant. The last place I was in also kept my shower gel, shampoo, and lotion in a closet and I could only have it certain hours of the day and then had to return it.

I would imagine since you are his legal guardian that would supersede confidentiality rules. When I was under 18 the hospitals would always call my mom if anything happened. Like if I had to be restrained or my meds were being adjusted. Once I turned 18 they didn’t do that anymore. Even when I was so unwell I had to be restrained for trying to take an officer’s gun and then had charges. My mom didn’t know anything happened until I called and told her the next day.

I would talk to the head nurse of the facility though and find out what you have to do to be in the loop. Good luck!! :sunny:


The first day I was put in a long-term locked psychiatric hospital the nurse who was showing me my room said, “They don’t
help you in here. It’s just a warehouse for the mentally ill”.


Yes-my son had to earn certain things in the hospital also.


If you are his legal guardian then there should be no obstacles to you getting the information that you need. Maybe give them a copy of the papers to prove it?

I would ask for a list of the ‘rules’ that they are referring to. It’s a patient’s right to be provided with this. For the life of me I can’t think why deodorant isn’t allowed. I know I’ve had to clear with the nurses station items that I’ve brought in for my son. Glass or anything that can cut or be used to self-harm or harm others is not allowed.

Some nurses have gotten to me but I try not to show it or react. If I’m on bad terms with the nursing staff then it will be harder for me.

If you keep running into this I would ask to speak to a supervisor.


That must have been a terrible thing to hear. I would probably have a panic attack if I was locked up long-term and heard that. My biggest fear with schizophrenia is being locked up again, and I only ever have once for five days. Even just five days was scary for me, I missed my family so much. It was the first time I ignored any feelings of embarrassment and mustered up the guts to tell my dad and brother that I love them over the phone. While I was in there I also think the daytime head nurse really didn’t like me because of writing down what I did to get locked up during the morning group. He seemed to pay a lot of attention to me and once joked that they were going to preform some sort of search on me. I can’t exactly remember what sort of search he said, though.


let me explain why some hospitals are so strict about what you can ad cannot have. Some do not allow food or drink because you can put drug or alcohol In it. you cannot have spray cans because people get high off of it. nothing made of glass because you can cut yourself, nothing with batteries, when I was in a state hospital for over a year, I got ahold of batteries on 2 different occasions and swallowed them, they had to be surgically removed, when I refused to allow them to be femoved, it leaked into my stomache and burned a hole in it. I also got ahold of a glass coffee pot and broke it, severely sliced up my arms and needed staples. I also got ahold of a razor because we are allowed to shave but it was too late when they realized I took the blade out and swallowed it. it took 8 days to pass because I would not allow it to be removed. I hav also cut myself up although not badly, with a soda can. that is why the rules areas they are. if there is a will, there is a nway.


I really like the idea about getting rules on paper. I was told by two staff that what I brought was fine, but then his individual nurse said no. My son got to come home on Friday.


Wow, that’s some serious shit.