Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Sz and cannabis substance abuse

Does anyone have a family member that self medicates with cannabis? Our son somehow got his hands on some Tuesday night, I found out Wednesday that he was smoking, I didn’t confront him because I was afraid he would get agitated. He smoked what he had Tues, Wed and Thurs night.

To be completely honest, I am sleep deprived, I sleep 1 hour every 2 hours for a total of 3 per night because i’m afraid… afraid the drugs will trigger a psychotic episode and that he will become violent. I for 4 days now… Subconsciously I no longer feel safe in our home, even though i’ve hidden everything that can be used as a weapon.
I make sure he takes his medicine daily, I bring it to him. He mostly hides out in his room when he is high and only comes out for his meals but you can tell he is hallucinating… this is the second he’s tried cannabis… he says “It calms his anxiety because he has nothing to do or no control over that, and it helps him forget about that and lets him be in the moment”…

How do you guys deal with your loved one and substance abuse?

In the words of our son’s p-doc “Cannabis for most people is harmless. For those with schizophrenia, it is evil.”
How is he obtaining the pot? Can you cut off the supply? From our experience, day 3 of withdrawal comes with a lot of agitation.
This is not a popular option, but the dr gave our son a benzodiazepine to take at night for 2 weeks to withdraw from the marijuana.
It was successful and was the very first step in our son’s recovery; probably his first success that also gave his self confidence a boost.
All this takes a clear head from us caregivers.
Is there any way you could get some sleep at a hotel for one night?
I feel for you; not a lot of easy answers.
Please take care of yourself and know you are not alone.

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He worked (door dash app) food delivery a few hours for 2 days, I’m assuming he used his earnings to order some off snapchat. I’ve heard from my daughter that you can pretty much find anyone “serving” in any area, so I’m assuming thats how he came about it. He confided in his older sister about being high and how it makes him feel.
Right now there is no magic pill for getting sleep, even if I were to get a hotel room I would only be worried about whether he is safe, etc. It’s not easy but I am trying to practice some self care. I’ve emailed his treatment team to make them aware. He appears to be someway okay today, he spent a lot of time with me and wasn’t agitated. However I just can’t turn that “uncertain feeling” off, I’m assuming environmental stressors are causing my insomnia.

One day at a time.

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Hi @momof3, we struggled with this too. You may want to read some of my posts on my son’s pot use. For several years I have enforced this rule: in order to live at home, take your meds, no drugs. It meant agonizing over evicting my son, but I had to do it.