Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Unmedicated son continues

Our 29 yo son continues to go without medications. His destruction is getting worse. My husband and I went to his house today, when he wasn’t home. His house is horrible. Looks like food thrown on walls, large holes in walls ( I’m afraid it will go to outside eventually) . When we walked in, his water was running, heat was turned way up. Bathtub filled with water; drained clogged. He has a little electric stove that looks like a fire… that was on high with all kinds of stuff close to it. Figured out his refrigerator wasn’t working. His TV is in pieces ( about 6th TV he has had). His cable modem destroyed. His phone smashed. Now he is staying at our house a lot… which we don’t want. On one hand we feel really bad for him… on the other hand it makes us so mad… because he won’t help himself… but that is part of the disease. We are at wits end of what to do, how to help him. He needs to be in for treatment, but he hasn’t harmed himself or others :slight_smile: And I have to tell you, it never works… him being admitted. He may be good for a couple weeks… then back to no medicine, etc. The last couple days has been emotionally hard for us. We are retired and realize this is a forever situation. We feel there is no end. Just had to vent.


Sounds normal to me lol…

That sounds so hard.

Are you and your husband usually more or less on the same page about the situation and able to access a sense of togetherness?

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Yes. Fortunately we are on same page. We decided to go clean up his place next week. Maybe this will make it more desirable for him to stay there. But we won’t buy anymore electronics
.and nothing we can do about holes…it would be like stringing beads without a knot on end.

My son was on the same path. Destruction, unsafe habits and living environment. Even after I got guardianship, it continued - UNTIL my son started on clozapine. It has been a game changer, and even tho we (the pdoc and myself) didn’t think he would stay compliant and cooperate with the lab testing schedule, he has. I credit that to the fact that it actually WORKS for him to calm the voices in his head. It took a while, but many of his positive symptoms are controlled, and he doesn’t seem so completely driven by the delusions that do remain.

I think the fact that I had made the decision for him to be admitted to what is called a “level-2” facility here in my state - a locked setting with nursing and the permission to administer meds when appropriate - helped. He wanted to remain in the independent living status he had returned to, and he knew if things continued down the path he was on, he would be back in some kind of facility. BTW, the admission was made directly from a hospital stay, so he didn’t really have a choice to get out of it.

I hope you can get thru this and see some light. My son continues to make progress. Just recently, he has openly admitted his diagnosis (I wasn’t even around, he volunteered it!) has requested to start talk therapy, and is going to try a martial arts class this week. He has a pet cat who he adores, and who he doesn’t want to traumatize with loud noises. We have started doing repairs in the house where he lives. I did, when I provided this house for him, do it with the condition that I would have access to the property. I will also so that for quite some time, I would not enter his house without keeping my phone and my keys on my person, for safety concerns. When he was still sick with active hallucinations, he sometimes objected to my entry, but I think he really appreciates it now - I come in to fix food, bring groceries (and sometimes plunge the toilet). He lives a pretty calm life now.

I agree on the “no more electronics” and also just not dealing with some of the repairs. I was at the same point myself a few years back. I DID replace windows when broken, but left the gaping holes in the walls. (I REEEELLY don’t enjoy repairing holes in old plaster walls!)


Thanks for the input. Did you force him in because you had guardianship? The facilities around here, in Delaware , don’t keep them in long enough.

Yes, I had the ability to do so because of guardianship. Other living arrangements were failing, and I could not sustain the situation of his repeated evictions and trouble with law enforcement in the community. It was an incredibly difficult decision to make, but had a good end result. It is sad to have to tell your adult child, I need to take away your independence and freedom. This illness causes such heartache.

I had first tried a few different supported living facilities, but he didn’t succeed at any of them.

Is this housing that your provide for your son?

Yes. Its an older mobile home we had rented out. We charge him minimal rent.

He needs to be sectioned and put on depot meds. He won’t ever gain insight without that.


My son never did well with depot meds because none of them were the correct one for him. Abilify absolutely sent him on a serious tangent - it was AWFUL. Finding the AP that works for your loved one, and keeping them consistent is what is necessary. So much easier said than done.


He has been on injections before. But always comes down to him eventually refusing meds.

Oh my, @Shallcro. I’m so sorry you are dealing with this never ending cycle. I hope for your family things will get better. What if you told him that he could not stay in your house with you unless he saw his doctor and followed through with the doctors recommendations otherwise he has to stay in his own place.? You never know he may just let you take him to the dr. Can he take medication on his own without forgetting etc?
For my son we had to wait for him to get sick enough to meet the criteria if he refused to go to the dr.

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I have almost exactly the same things going on with my 36 year old son in UK. I’m 62 working full time and having no life myself because of him. My husband died in 2010. No one wants to know in our Mental Health Service. They just say call the police. His flat is a mess. I have to clean it up.

yes, we are all in the same boat. Its sad for us parents/care givers and the ill one also.

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My son had an episode like this and even tho he did not harm himself or anyone else he was a threat to himself so I had to involuntarily commit him. It was the hardest thing to do but I honestly thought something terrible would happen such as his house burning down with him in it. Or him beIng aFixated from leaving the gas on. He is doing much better now, on medication and working . If you feel he’s a threat then do what you have to do and worry about the rest later. God bless and prayers to all who suffer from this illness.


I can relate totally. My 29 yo i medicated son is living in filth. Won’t let anyone help him. Fired his psychiatrist and therapist and now is so delusional that he’s convinced I beat Him as a child. Tells my husband he should divorce me or he (son) will take care of it. I am Fearful he will try to hurt me. He knows where we live. Help! Do we move? If we do will he be able to find us?

He is in definite danger to himself and would qualify for a trip to the mental hospital against his will here in California. Everything you described is a real danger to himself. Get an evaluation by the crisis team right away. Once in the mental hospital talk to the social workers and nurses to move forward for guardianship.
Good luck with this, iit is a journey. I had had my own daughter in the hospital over 12 times and could have recieved guardianship, except she is so exceptionally polite in her regular and psychotic state of mind that I couldn’t get cooperation from the doctors.

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yep, not 1000 miles away

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I feel so sorry for you and bless you and everyone. I honestly couldnt take it any more. My stepson was the same way. He lived on and off with us and i felt he’d burn the house down, or even kill me. I found a bunch of steak knifes sitting out once and that scared me. He was delusional 99% of the time. It was very hard on my husband too. We were ousted by our neighbors they had young children and he scared them. I didnt blame them i was afraid myself. All they said was put him in treatment. Its hard because he is an adults and yiu cant force them. We tried so many options for 15 years. I cant even put it into words on how to explane.

Were like you, im retired 65 plus my husband is a few years behind me. I feel bad but couldnt take anymore. We moved, for now he doesnt know where. I have a fear in my head he will show up on our door step.

He has always been a little petty thief and sz has made it worse. He got in trouble with the law again and finally they have him in a treatment place and forced to take meds. I wish there was a way.

I saw the joker movie and it bothered me so much. The character was exactly like my stepson. I have no answers and thank goodness for this site. Everyone gave good advise. Bless you.