Update on my 24 year old Szo son


Thank you for writing and letting us know what’s going on.

I hope the best for you and your family.


@johnsmom @SzAdmin and @Vallpen… I need some words of encouragement from you ladies…Thanks


I know how hard it is to see people make what you think are bad decisions and not help themselves. But i think you’re hitting on the right thing here - which is that if you focus on how he’s feeling and doing (feeling better, more control) and echo that back to him - and ask him if thats the type of thing he wants - maybe he’ll start taking the better path.

Ultimately the best way (I’ve read) is to focus on what the patient wants his life to feel and be like - does he want to be in control of his own life, be independent, live by himself, have a social life with positive people, be healthy, etc. - ask him what he wants - and then help him see how treatment gets him there, and help him see that when he’s on treatment he’s getting closer towards what he really wants.

Be empathetic to his issues, and desires (if they are healthy) and help him see how the positive treatment approaches improve the chances of the type of life he really wants.

I recommend you read this:



Thanks, Yes, We talk about this all of the time. He talks about getting an apartment, working and just being independent. We told him we can help him with those things, but he have to take his medication. If my son isn’t on any medication. He will be out of control. He don’t have any friends. It’s only family. We are positive and try to help him, but he has to make positive decisions too. For him to talk about doing drugs is not good for him, should I let him hit rock bottom? We are tired. My son lack of insight of his illness. We let him look and listen to the videos of how he’s acting off of medication. He still say he’s not sick…He told me and his dad that he was grown and we can’t tell him what to do…He did say he will continue to go to the doctor, but what’s the use if your not going to take anyone advice.


I have been thru the same tough stuff. I will think things are improving, and then it all goes into the toilet again.

Regarding cash - there was a time when I would only provide my son with gift cards. I know its hard tho when something like a birthday comes around. People think they are being supportive. But you might try suggesting this for next gift giving opportunity.

My son has lived is several different residential placements. It was just not working for him to be at home. These were not ideal, but I didn’t have an option to stay at home with him. Sometimes a connection with one or more staff members can happen and make a difference.

I do have to occasionally remind myself that my son would never choose to live in paranoia and fear. This is a very difficult way to live one’s life. But he has little insight into his illness so it is hard for him to see that he is.


This is always a really tough call. Many parents set limits and say if you’re going to take drugs, you can’t live with us. Its great that he’s an adult - you can say, and he can make his own decisions - but if he’s making really bad decisions you don’t want him in your home. If he wants to work towards taking positive steps in his recovery - they you can be all behind him and support and help him. But you don’t want to support him making bad decisions.

These types of decisions are always so tough. The Trial and Error approach towards life (e.g. his bad decisions and their impacts) sometimes is the only way.


Yes, It can be good one minute and then the next minute he’s going down the hill again.

I really didn’t want him to ge the money, but because he has been doing good these past couple of weeks I thought it would be ok, plus he hasn’t talked about any drugs in a long time Over 2 years. He was just diagnosed on last year and each time he had went into the hospital. His drug test has been negative. He just started about talking about weed. We have never did any drugs before, so I don’t know where he gets that from. He did have friends up until last year, so maybe they introduced him to drugs, but before this illness of sczo came along. He was always out with friends and at the age of 24 a parent can’t control who he was friends with.

He know how we feel about drugs in our house. He know having drugs in the house will get him kicked out, so I believe that’s why he hasn’t smoked any. He’s just talking about it now, but I don’t even want him to talk about it… Thank you so much @Vallpen and @SzAdmin… I love this site because you guys calm me down and understand what we are going through…Hugs to you!



Oh yes You are right, On His next birthday dinner, He will only get gift cards…


@myson, I truly believe you are doing everything you can do for your son.

We have the same rules you do. It’s not up to us whether or not our family members follow household rules, like not doing drugs. It’s really important to our own well-being to know in our hearts what is in our control and what is not. Other people’s choices are not in our control. We can work to help our family members, but we don’t know the results. “Tis a gift to be given.” We do our best, not even really knowing what to do.


I’m on pins and needles myself right now. My ex-husband came to town to visit our son. He has not been here for 2 and 1/2 years. My son has had some rough days struggling with anxiety about seeing his dad.

Many of his delusions are centered on his dad. He leaves this afternoon, and I am very anxious now myself, waiting to see what might happen in the aftermath. I had to call for CIT officers last week before his dad got here, he was ranting and smashing things in his house, and his neighbor said she was close to calling the police - I figured I had better call CIT officers since the neighbor would not know to do that. (Yes, I’ve told her. But I can’t count on her remembering.)

So, don’t know if I will get an uninterrupted night’s sleep.


Thanks, I always try to remember the statement you always tell me about things that are not in my control. You are so right!

This is my problem. As a mother, I have always been able to fix things, but this I CANT FIX. I know it’s not in my control, but it is so hard. This is all new to us. It seems like every time I look at the news. Its always something with a mentally ill person getting shot and killed. They come off of their medication and get out of control. About a week ago, A guy in another city close ti where we lived killed himself. He was Biploar/Sczo. I can’t help for thinking that it could be my son if he don’t comply with treatment. It really scares me. I pray and I have faith in God, but this is taking a toll on me. Today, I’m just all over the place, I just had my hopes up that he will continue to take his Meds. Oh, And he said he’s not taking his vitimins any more either. I thought to myself… There’re only vitimins. I’m just tired today. I wish calgon can take me away. Lol… Hugs to you!


Awww, I hope your son will be alright after his dad leaves. Is it the illness that causes him to have anxiety toward his dad? Please keep us updated. Hugs to you!


did he take his Rispedone pill last night or is this a new thing he just started talking about today that he will no longer take his medicine ? It sounds like he is struggling with wanting to be independent and wanting to make his own choices he sounds like he is being really rebellious to me ---------> telling you that he is going to go get and smoke weed which is something he knows you dont want him to do (why would he tell you about planning to get weed instead of just doing it ?) , telling you he is not going to take medication anymore something he knows you want him to do , or vitamins and of course there is no good reason to not take vitamins they dont have any side effects its just something you want him to take , telling you that he doesnt think he is bipolar after all something that you were happy about that he accepted about himself . is he smoking more than usual and knows that upsets you ?

you said he was on Rispedone before he went on the monthy shot and he did well on it before - was he paranoid when he was on the Risperdone the last time or did it help with the paranoia before ? If he hasnt been taking the rispedone for a while then that would explain why his paranoia has returned but if he has been taking his rispedone up until today he is not really off his meds yet he is threatening to not take it tonight and tomorrow would then be his first day off his meds , he might be saying paranoid things to you pacing exc. knowing that it will make you worried , and doing all these things could just be a way for him to feel more in control of his life because he feels like his life is so out of his control right now . so maybe all this is just him trying to regain some control over his life make his own decisions and being rebellious towards you and your husband and what you want him to do .

He has to do it for himself but its important to feel like you have control over things and its frustrating not having control over life and he might be angry frustrated and just having a lot of different emotions about how his life is right now . does he see a therapist right now someone he can talk to about his feelings ?

if you buy his cigarettes for him and know where he keeps his cigs and have access to them , what do you think would happen if you took them right now and said to him " take your meds tonight and i will give you a pack of cigarettes if you dont want to take your meds fine but these are cigarettes i bought and ill trade you a pack of cigarettes for taking your medication thats the cost for for these cigarettes - its your choice you decide , but i care about you and you agreed to take this medication and work with the doctor " (or something along those lines) that could get him to agree to take his meds … its really hard to give advice for someone i dont know but to me it does sound like a control issue and finding little ways that will make him feel more control over his life thats a pretty important thing for a young adult to feel independent and make their own decisions .

and its important for everyone to vent their frustrations if he doesnt really have any close friends or anyone to talk about his feelings finding someone for him to talk to i think would help . even someone online there is a website called 7cupsoftea.com there and there are a lot volunteer listeners who are just there for anyone who feels like they need someone to talk to and it doesnt cost anything . If hes being rebellious right now he might not try it if you tell him to go there :smirk:
but you could write the website down on a piece of paper for yourself and he could accidentally find it lol actually it would really help you a lot too it has helped me talking to people on there many times

you could also remind him what happened the last 2 times he stopped taking his medication all at once what happened how how much he hated being stuck in the hospital and ask him why he thinks it would be any different this time .


Yes, it is the illness and his delusions. He has many false ideas about how his dad has worked for the military, and that the military and/or the aliens consider him a person of interest for various reasons.


Hey @johnsmom, He is due to take the shot on 5/18, but since he’s not fing to take the shot. The doctor told him to start back on the pills on 5/16.


Hey Johnsmom,

Yes, My son was on rispedal/Rispedone before the shot. He did very well on the pills, but because he was a threat to himself on this last hospital stay. He was put on the Invegs shot.

He has lack of insight on the sczho, but He has had Biploar since the age of 16. It runs in my family. My sister is Biploar, so when he told the doctor, he know I have Biploar. I will take the pills. The doctor went along with him because she knew Rispedone treats bipolar and sczo.
Yes, He has an appointment for the Therpist on 5/19. He did say he will continue to see the Therpist.
Yes, I believe he wants to take control of his life and be independent. He don’t have any friends because everyone is against him(That’s what he things)

My son has not smoked in over 2 years. He talk about smoking weed. He said it keeps him calm. He just started back talking about it…Do you believe since the Invega shot is wearing off is the reason for him to be talking like that…He knows smoking weed would not be good for him.
My son is mental illness, but he is stubborn too. I do believe he is just saying that to make us upset.
As for as the cigarettes, We told him that we aren’t buying anymore. We told him we will continue to give him food and shelter, but we will not buy him anymore cig. He’s ok with that now, because he can buy it with his birthday money($30 is all got as far as the money goes) so that will be gone soon.
I will tell you what my husband did in the past. My son loves listening to his music and making beats on his computer, so my husband took his computer from him and told him if he don’t take his medication than he can’t get his laptop back. My son was like I’ll be ok without it… 2 days later he said ok I’ll take it, so we might try that again…
Do you think I should just step back?



I’m sorry. I remember you talking about that on your post. Was your son happy to see his dad since he has been on his medication? I know that breaks your husband heart.


Dear myson, I have the same fears. One of the reasons I try very hard to let go of what I cannot control is that I do not like the effects my worries have on our relationship.

My mother had bipolar one and became psychotic a handful of times over the twenty years I knew her. The last time she became very manic/ psychotic, she took deliberate actions that ended in her death. The doctor said we would never know whether she was purposely trying to commit suicide or whether she was far enough into psychosis that she truly believed she would live through what she did.

I am trying to say this in a way that does not increase fear or worry, but knowing what does go wrong in a small percentage of these illnesses means doing our very best. We know for certain that no one wishes for the small percentage of bad or fatal outcomes of SMI. How can I say this in the way I mean to? Letting my fear take over has never helped my relationship with my family member. I have made phone calls to the crisis unit, had to speak with police when they came to our house looking for my family member because of behavior in public, just trying to get better outcomes. I have also told the police to stop looking for my family member when they were about to put my family member on a hold because my family member asked me to and had calmed down significantly. God, it’s hard. I have no idea whether any of my choices were for the best.

I trust everyone on this forum to understand themselves and their relationships with their family members. Our own limitations limit our ability to be supportive. Because I have had to let go of control, I give that advice, but I don’t know what will be best, not for my family or anyone else’s. If I did, I would be shouting it from the rooftops!

You’re really really right that we can’t fix mental illness.

Here’s to :rainbow:bubble baths


i think stepping back in terms of letting him make more decisions for himself so that he will feel like he has more control over his life yes definately his way of coping with that feeling of not being in control is doing what he can control he has control over what comes out of his mouth and he can control his movement ( the pacing ? ) and its completely natural for him to want to be more independent so just pay attention to little things you do for him or choose for him … and ask yourself is this something he can safely do for himself ? decide for himself or choose to do or not to do ? and try to think of opportunities for him to do things his way . if he doesnt want to take a vitamin there is food that is vitamin enriched that you can buy so you can both win . Does he have chores that he is responsible for around the house if not i think that would be a great way for him to do things his own way let him choose which chores to do from a list of things that need to be done on a regular basis and let him do those things his way or maybe suggest to him the idea of making money by doing yard work for people around town you can do it together if you feel like he needs supervision right now but let him organize and be in charge i think he would love that .


I am not keeping my son med compliant. He has been on Abilify shots for about seven months now and has improved in many respects, but he accepted them because he was detained under the Mental Health Act in the UK. They basically said he can’t leave the hospital until he agreed to the first shot. He lives independently. He is much older than your son. He is 30 and was diagnosed just under three years ago. He still hates the medication because it makes him sleepy and fat but he has been warned that they can put a Community Treatment Order on him. That means that he has to take his shots or they detain him again. We discussed it. It’s like a life sentence when you have committed no crime so it’s pretty persuasive. He has never taken drugs of any kind and never drunk alcohol so that helps. But from what I read here, in the US he would probably get a diagnosis of ‘schizoaffective disorder’ because his biggest problem is depression and delusions. He doesn’t really get hallucinations and so forth, just ‘ideas of reference’ - he thinks he is receiving ‘messages’.
I do think that for a teenager who needs to develop his independence this is particularly hard. Perhaps discuss that openly with him and work out things he can do step by step and show how treatment can help him toward independence. There are lots of people on the Diagnosed boards who are living independently, studying, working, are married or have a girlfriend or boyfriend, have kids, etc. He needs to know that.