Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Schizophrenia and My Sister


#1

Hi Everyone!

I just joined here. My sister had been diagnosed with schizophrenia in 1989. I am not sure if this was a completely accurate diagnosis. I’m not saying she doesn’t have it but observing her and comparing her to other people I have seen in documentaries there’s more to her condition. She doesn’t go to counseling but rather a doctor at a mental health facility for her meds and she talks to the doctor. I have had experience first hand with this facility and it isn’t a very good one at all. With the many counselors I have dealt with there I feel they need help themselves. I am not familiar with my sister’s doctor but according to my sister, the doctor told her she is doing better and doesn’t want to see her till March. This is a gross mistake in the doctor’s judgement. Somehow I feel my sister slipped through the cracks. When she was discharged from the hospital in 1989, because she was afraid to ride in a car at that time the hospital let her walk 15 miles to a town she didn’t even live in. Then she was supposed to go to adult daycare but the doctor at the time at the mental health facility where she now goes for her meds, told her she didn’t have to. I knew that doctor and he was crazy! Anyway, now she lives in an apartment building by herself and collects SSI. She is married but her husband lives in a different apartment in the same building because they were going to cut off her SSI because he receives Social Security Disability. So the husband decided to move out. Her husband treats her very badly and neglects her. He isn’t too smart and doesn’t understand her mental illness and doesn’t care about it. He is very self absorbed and always been. My sister cannot manage money. She has direct deposit yet on check day she goes to the bank and withdraws every bit of money exceot for $5. She keeps her money in her apartment and she doesn’t remember where she puts her money. Sometimes she gives some of her money to neighbors to hold and they take it from her. Sometimes her husband comes over and takes money from her. I only have so much patience for her and I try to be with her but she makes me so nervous after a few hours. She needs help but her doctor doesn’t see it. I don’t know what to do.

Thanks for listening,
~Lori


#2

Hi Lori,

Welcome to the site - I hope you find it valuable.

That sounds like a lousy situation with your sister.

I would definitely try to get her seeing some better doctors. It doesn’t sound like she’s getting much help - and as so often with things - the squeaky wheel gets the grease - so keep working on it.

Here are some resource you might consider. They might not be the direct place for your sister to go (early psychosis centers are usually great - with top notch doctors - but they only see people just as they are getting diagnosed and are early in their illness - but they might be able to direct you to groups or doctors in your area who are better than what she currently is getting.

Try contacting groups that are close to you and asking about additional resources:

http://www.nami.org/1 - National Alliance on Mental Illness.
http://www.schizophrenia.ca/ - Schizophrenia Society of Canada

Early Psychosis Treatment center information in this link:
http://forum.schizophrenia.com/t/early-psychosis-treatment-centers-how-to-get-great-help/12743

Psychiatric Treatment Centers affiliated with Medical Schools in the USA
http://www.schizophrenia.com/psychcenters.htm

This link may help you find a psychiatrist in your area
http://psychiatrists.psychologytoday.com/rms/prof_search.php


#3

Thank-you for your reply. The only thing is my sister likes her doctor. She won’t go anywhere else. I have asked her. I try so hard to help her but I can only do so much.

~Lori


#4

Hi Lori,

I am sorry about the situation with your sister. SZ effects different people in different ways. No one knows why. Sometimes when trying to advocate for someone with sz we have to keep trying to say the same thing over and over again, in different ways to try to find the way that makes it click for someone. Keeping asking your sister to explore different doctors, find different ways to try and make it important-sometimes it takes some creativity. All you can do is what you can do.

We are here for support, welcome.


#5

Hi Lori~
Welcome!
I think your sister needs some support–you too!
Are there any other family members involved with her care?As far as her SSI/SSDI is concerned,they can actually mandate her to have a payee if they feel she is not able to deal with her money situation.
It does sound terrible that her husband is taking money from her? Does he support her in any way?
I dont know what to say about this one, but you have some good advice on this thread already. Hope you can get some family involved so you dont have to deal with this alone…
Good luck to you!!