Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Things to take to spouse in hospital

I have another freaking out post :laughing: but as I was reading the boards I noticed several wives/fiancées/girlfriends and thought it might be interesting and helpful to get ideas on what to take to LOs in the hospital. And you all will be glad I’m not freaking out in this post, too! Haha!

My husband always wants a bunch of different newspapers to leave in the TV room, and they give him a journal. I have taken a card a few times with mixed response. What kinds of things do you guys take to LOs in the hospital? I’d love to take homemade food but of course that’s a no-no!

Really? No homemade food? They allow me to do that and I can also bring him takeout or things like ice cream and soda. You can bring him clothes (sweatpants, sweaters, flip flops, t-shirts, underwear, etc. – nothing with laces or strings, they will cut it out to prevent them from harming themselves or others). You can bring them books if they like to read or maybe a special blanket. They don’t allow them to have stuffed animals though. They give them deodorant, a hair brush, toothpaste, and a toothbrush, so that’s taken care of. They wash their clothes every day and provide them with small cups of shampoo and body wash. If he has any other medicine he takes, you can bring that too and he can ask for them and they’ll give it to him accordingly. Cards aren’t always allowed because they can cut themselves or someone, same with pencils (stab). I think that’s all you can really do. Call him to see if he wants anything and then talk to his nurse to confirm it’s okay to bring it. I got mine chocolate today.

No food, clothes, stuffed anything, blankets… I’m stuck with newspapers, magazines, books :frowning:

I guess it may depend on the hospital or patient privileges too.

The VA is serious, lol. Apparently at some point, drugs came in smuggled in food. I think all VAs have the no food, 1 change of clothes policy. Idk. It does make it a challenge to think of what to take lol!

Oh, I could see that happening. But the other items are mostly unharmful…

When my son was in the hospital, it was pretty much clothes only. This was a private, psychiatric hospital - not part of a regular hospital. Curiously, they were allowed to go outside 3 times a day if their privileges weren’t restricted to smoke. The nurses held the cigarettes between breaks & supplied a lighter when it was smoke time.

Definitely no food or drinks. We could only take our car keys to the ward to visit - no cell phones or anything else.

I asked if I could bring him some sketch pads, etc. since they had some markers there. They said bring them, but they’d have to see. I made sure there were no staples, no spiral wire, nothing - they wouldn’t let him have them.

I also brought a magazine (no staples) - he couldn’t have that either.


It really depends on the hospital and their rules. I will keep you and your loved one in my prayers! Hugs to you.

It does - and maybe what ward they’re on.

My friend has a daughter who has alopecia, diabetes, and now she’s depressed/anxious/self harms/gets suicidal. He had her at a different local hospital, and they’d let him take her out of the psychiatric unit as long as they didn’t leave hospital grounds - so he’d take her to the on-site fast food shop.

Of course, she’s minor, and not psychotic, so maybe I wouldn’t be able to do the same if my son went inpatient there.

Honestly, the not going outside is what kills him most. Since it’s the VA, he’s always up in arms that even prisoners get to go outside for 30 minutes a day, and that it’s against the Geneva Convention to not be allowed to go outside. I don’t know, but strangely once they get in inpatient rehab they can be outside and smoke as long as it’s not a group time or something. I just pray he gets into the rehab this time.

So I just checked the hospital website that my fiancé is in and it says that you can also bring:

  • Hair dryers, electric razors, shampoo, and other health and beauty aids
  • A long-distance calling card
  • A clock without a radio, CD or tape player
  • Mirrors
  • CD/Tape players, iPods, & MP3 players, but the music has to be approved by staff members
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Hairspray or mousse
  • Perfumes/Colognes
  • Nail polish/nail polish remover
  • Nail clippers, scissors

I’m surprised that they allow you to bring all of this, but it also has to be stored at the nurses’ station because all these items can be considered dangerous and when using them it has to be supervised.

Wow, that’s so amazing! The VA allows literally nothing on the list!

Yeah, I was quite surprised by it when I saw it.