The advice from well meaning people is overwhelming


#21

Catherine,
Really like your input and I agree with. some parents are so selfish. They treat their child like he is the one who caused himself the illness or it is like he is on Drug and instead of helping him, they drive him to desperation and eventually to death.

My son is now miles and miles away because he has to appear in court in California but I have a family friend who is in constant contact with him and giving him his daily allowance. he does not talk to me nicely but I would never abandon him because I know it is the illness that made him this way, it is not really him. when he is on medicine, he acts a lot nicer. he is non-complaint but I will keep working to get him the help he needs until the end of my life.


#22

Knows3939, do not give up. keep find answers on this website. Report him to police as a Missing mentally ill person and ask the police to evaluate him when most of the time, they will take him to ER and give him shot or medicine.

I have reported my son missing at least 3 times when i do not hear from him and he is miles and miles away. I get him hospitalized from far away 3 times and drove one time to Texas where he was held in Jail and met with Police and ask for him to be hospitalize because he would not come back with me home.


#23

Knows3939, Keep tracking him in anyway you know of. Your son is crying for help!


#24

Catherine–I hope you no longer have any interaction w the Ohio mom w twins. She sounds awful.
I hate the “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps” mentality. My husband’s family is like that–even though he is diagnosed paranoid sz, and they have tons of mental illness in the family.
My own father was less than understanding w my husband ( niow ex). He couldn’t understand why my husband had a hard time finding and keeping a job.

I rather err on the side of compassion and love, rather than “tough love” that faults someone who is having a hard time.


#25

Sometimes, my husband can be like that.

When he does it to me, I tell him he’s him, and I’m me. And, you know how I can tell? Then I wave my hands all around him and say “you” - then I do it to myself and say “me”, repeat it again, then I go on.

When he says something about our son, I tell him in an obviously sarcastic way that not everyone can be perfect like him.

Slightly twisted humor seems to go a long way with him.


#26

I have contact with him through instagram and I thank God for that. I called a homeless outreach program one time and after talking to the lady she said she was going to send somebody out there to evaluate him but they never did. I sent him a little bit of money here and there he sits in McDonald’s all day and drinks 8 cups of coffee or else he’ll sit on the street corner and wait for a food hand out he is surviving. I’m scared of the hospital and I’m scared of not having the hospital both.


#27

I can’t imagine the fear or pain if I lose track of him. He screams at people on instagram. I try not to pay too much attention to what he’s saying and I’m just so happy he’s ok as he can be. I have been concentrating on the things that I’m grateful for today and it is really helped me.


#28

No mother would give up. I love to hear your determination because I think a lot of us feel like that. That’s wonderful that you have a family friend that can help him.


#29

I was scared of the hospital too, and we avoided it for 12 years, until we couldn’t avoid it anymore.

It took 5 involuntary hospitalizations in a year to get him to something that I like to think is stable, although he’s still not fully recovered. I think he’s heading in the right direction though.

Looking back, I wish we had admitted him early on. They would have admitted him on his first psychotic break, but the was the hospital handled it at the time only made us less comfortable with leaving our 15-year-old child with them .

We were almost as fearful as he was and took him home. That’s been so, so long ago, and compared to then, I’m pretty fearless now.

My biggest fear has always been that my son would end up homeless like yours is now. I don’t think I’ll ever get over that one, and I don’t think I could ever accept it. I’m very thankful that my son is safely under our roof for now.

I don’t know if this will help you or not, but at one point over the past year, and it’s been a rough year, I decided that I would do whatever it took to get my son help, and that I wouldn’t let the fear of making things worse stop me. Because not doing anything could allow him to get worse too. So, right or wrong, for good or bad, I decided to take action when opportunities presented themselves.

Maybe an opportunity will present itself to you & you’ll find a way to get your son the help he needs. It’s awful to feel hopeless and helpless and I can only imagine that’s how you feel from so far away.


#30

Your pretty fearless now. I love that! I also love you saying that you’re not going to let the fear of making the wrong decision make you not do anything. I’m really working hard I’m getting out of this powerlessness that I feel in my life since this took over. I go to bed and wake up and schizophrenia is the 1st thing on my mind. I have an appointment with a counselor this week and I’m hoping to get some relief. I am going through a divorce and a lot of changes with that as well and my life feels upside down. Somebody said, “maybe there is an online support group” and here I am. You guys are unbelievably helpful.


#31

It’s probably the first thing on most of our minds, and that’s OK.

I’ve found that feeling powerless is the most depressing thing for me.
And, maybe I’m just giving myself the illusion of control, but I feel better as soon as I have some kind of plan that I think I can take action on - even if it’s just a new approach to try to convince my son to do something.

You’re going to see a counselor, so you’ve taken action. I bet you feel much better after your appt.

I keep saying I’m going to do the same thing. But, when things are bad, I don’t want to leave my son for any longer than necessary. And, when they’re good, I don’t see the need. I do go to a live support group now & then & I always leave feeling much better than when I arrived.


#32

That’s the most cold-hearted thing ever a mother could say about her own child! My adult son with Sz is the most special person in the world to me. I love him so much it hurts!! He was the best little boy growing up and I’m very very very shattered by his having paranoid schizophrenia, and just this past Friday he had to be hospitalized for the second time. First time was when he got his diagnosis, that we all thought he would get. That was five years ago. And for about the last year or so I’ve seen him slipping back into psychosis. So hard to watch, but you almost have to do it when they’re adults, and hope they don’t hurt themself or someone else. Because of course when they’re adults, we have to wait, so we can commit them involuntarily. So awful I feel like a traitor. But what else could I do? And of course, now a new medication. Depakote. I’m scared for him. He does not do well on pills. That’s why he’s on the Invega shot. He’ll still have that, plus Depakote and Paxil.


#33

Yes, there is one person in particular who has made these kind of comments to me many times. He is someone who is part of my life and I used to try to make him understand how senseless it would be for a young man to fake sz illness and stay home all the time for fun. I have chosen to never discuss my son with him because it is useless to make this stupid man understand that there is such a thing as severe mental illness. I will not listen to any horrible comments about my brave son, who as we all know has been through way too much suffering in his young life.


#34

No I never saw her again after that and was glad not to. I also believe in defaulting to “compassion” because I believe in treating others the way you would want to be treated. I could not imagine living through the hell my son has survived. I could never have abandoned him but I will not lie and say that in the toughest hours I didn’t fantasize about it. It was really tough especially when the illness brought out a hateful side to him and all of the hate was directed at me. I am so glad I pushed through that and just did what needed to be done… I surprised myself and when my son started getting better, eventually, I was so gratefully surprised by him. Every day is a gift now. There might be a time and place for tough love in some context with a healthy person, but it is not effective or compassionate for someone whose brain does not function properly.


#35

So true Catherine, how much respect we have for our children to endure so much, so uderservingly. In he beginning I would lecture my son more and think he could do all the the things he could do before sz. Now after much research and trial and error , I have found it is best to keep his life as stress free as possible and enjoy outings together and small pleasures like a walk to dog park, maybe a quick lunch out. Anyways the sadness Is overwhelming, but has to take a back seat in our minds to cope with this new world. I am so grateful for the little things and that I found this group.


#36

Thereisalwayshope .I have read your comment over and over. “It feels overwhelming because it is overwhelming” "there’s no shame in crying " “hang in there” thank you


#37

slw - My husband has said that almost verbatim. He drinks. The drinking has increased since our son’s illness has gotten worse. (I have pretty much accepted that this is his way to deal; not happy about it because of the toll it takes on him physically, but sometimes you have to pick your battles…this is one I chose not to fight at the present time…) Perhaps it’s harder for dads to accept that their sons are “flawed” (their thinking…not ours?) and are not going to amount to what they had hoped. My husband expresses this a lot and he thinks it is because of something WE did wrong. I keep explaining that mental illnesses are NOT caused by bad parenting. He was raised by an overly critical mother so I get where this is coming from. He never feels like he measures up. I don’t think I will ever convince him that M’s mental conditions were not caused by us in some way. His guilt and shame has no end. It’s very sad. I love his mom, but she is another one who has issues and refuses to seek treatment.

It is just odd to me how many similar threads run through our families.


#38

I don’t think we caused my son’s mental illness, but both me & his dad definitely contributed to it by things we did as he was growing up. Nothing was ever directed at him, but he was just kind of caught up in the storm that was our relationship for a long time.

If I could go back, knowing what I know now, I still think he would have had some degree of mental illness, but maybe it wouldn’t be so bad.

I blame myself in a million other ways too. But, that means I feel responsible, not guilty - there’s a difference.


#39

An yet when I hear the stories here, I can go back to that day when…in a heartbeat. We’re on year 4 and our son is still delusional about some things. We try our best to keep him safe an this is pretty much our lives. We still have good days and bad days.


#40

My adopted son is near 20 yr old and as long as he is on his meds he is the sweetest person I have ever known…His old friends have left him to go on w/ their life. He talks to me about it. He makes friends easily and now is developing new friends. He just got his GED but before he got his diploma he walked the streets at night -all night,refused food,refused sleep -I just encourage him in this phase. When he got his diploma he cried like a baby bec he was so happy. He also has PTSD an spent 3 days trying to get a permit to get his driver’s license but could not take the stress-I understood. Next he is going for TN Tech School for a year an will get paid by the state. He is so encouraged about this and I am proud beyond belief…These r the good days…Always hang on to the good days to get u thru the rough days. My son can talk for 5 hours straight an then go for weeks not sharing… Each day is a wonderful day