I learned in the Coursera course I mentioned (https://family.schizophrenia.com/t/free-coursera-course-on-schizophrenia/10653 ) about a non-medical model for recovery called the Recovery Movement.
It focuses on:
- The family member being more active in their recovery rather than being a passive consumer of doctor-ordered treatments
- Social skills training to be better able to form social relationships. Focuses on group therapy where people learn to assess other people, form a hypothesis about what they might be thinking, and converse appropriately (e.g. about a shared interest, which was used as an example).
- Employment: the instructor, Professor Kurtz, says the current thinking is that they should jump right into competitive employment (as opposed to the old thinking about gradualist, sheltered employment) and have ongoing support from a therapist to help them deal with the stresses of a job. He doesn’t say full-time right away, but whatever job they can do – according to their interests and ability – for however many hours they can handle. Does not include volunteering. It’s a job paying at least minimum wage so that they can take baby steps to being independent.
- CBT to help with both positive and negative deluded thinking
All this depends on motivation and insight, which drugs might be necessary to help with in the beginning. If anyone knows about a Recovery Movement-oriented therapist in the Washington, D.C. area I’d like to know about them.