Violence towards my mother

My brother is 20 years old and has schizophrenia. He is refusing to take his meds and even lies to the doctor and says his meds are working fine.
My brother is also a drug addict and is trying to fish for a Xanax prescription over actually getting the correct meds that will help him. He also smokes weed and does meth.
When we try to talk to him about anything related to his condition he becomes violent with us especially my 64 year old mother. He has slapped and pushed her, left bruises and is verbally abusive to her. He has punched me in the face on a couple occasions also. He does not believe he has schizophrenia and that there are people who have put an RFID chip in his head and are talking to him negatively like 24 hours a day. He says they also control his bowel movements and wont let him go for days at a time.
Another scary thing is he thinks its one of our neighbors and has expressed that he wants to figure out who it is and kill them. We have called the cops on him a ton of times and all that happens is that they put him in the psych ward for a week or two and send him back home but about a month later we are right back where we left off.
My Mom says there is nothing she can do. So I guess we just wait around until he does something serious like kill one of us or a neighbor. Does anyone know if there is anything we can do here in Ohio?


Hello @DigbyDark, first of all welcome here to this forum, and I am so sorry your brother is having the issues he is having. Twenty years ago, that was my son exactly. Drug addicted, schizophrenic, hearing voices and in denial and I got shoved around a bit then myself.
I can share with you all (or what I can recall) of the resources that have helped me and my son over the years and that eventually brought my son and I to a very good place today in our lives where he stable and we live peacefully together.

I don’t know how all of it will ultimately turn out for your family but at least you can try-you sound very caring.
First of all, NAMI is a good resource for referrals to get mental health help. They also have really helpful free educational classes (Family-to-Family) that are very eye opening for family members and caregivers. Resources | NAMI Ohio In a crisis situation it is probably better to call a mental health resource instead of the regular police, if at all possible, unless you can be sure you are getting a CRT officer (trained in crisis response specifically) **Also as a side note it’s always wise to NOT argue with or try to ‘change’ your brother’s mind or even dismiss what he thinks, when he is delusional, it can create a worse situation. If he says that someone is listening or implanted something in his brain-or something else just keep your responses very neutral and nonjudgmental but you can ask, how did he discover this? or how does it make him feel? or when did it start? things like this seems okay according to professionals. There are several websites that explore this if you’re interested.
Netcare Access has changed over the years, but I believe they still do crisis interventions and emergency admissions to mental care facilities. Crisis Services - Netcare Access

As for psychiatric care on a sustained basis, my son has been with Concord Counseling in Westerville Ohio for almost 2 decades. I don’t know where in Ohio you live but you can get other referrals from NAMI for places near you. If you are near Columbus, Ohio, Westerville is worth the trip (unfortunately almost all places have waiting lists due to shortages of psychiatrists but still worth the effort to get on the list or lists. Home - Concord Counseling Services

Last but not least the thing that empowered me the most in being able to get my son the help he so desperately needed was getting my son declared disabled through advice of several friends we had the BEST Social Security Disability attorney in the state of Ohio, he walked me through everything. Doing this without an attorney is a fool’s errand and will likely take years or longer. It took 4 months before my son received his first disability check and in addition, he got Medicaid. Before the decision is finalized somebody needs to make it clear that due to his drug addiction, he needs a representative payee to care for his money for him until he gets stabilized and off of drugs. Either you or your mother. Depending on your age. (if you’re not an adult yet) Law Offices Of Daniel J. Allen - Home - Law Offices Of Daniel J. Allen ( Along with this action, and given his combative and self-destructive even violence prone nature, I would find a way to get him a legal guardian, either one that is assigned by the probate court or you if you’re old enough or your mom if she has the ability to stick it out. It’s not easy, none of this is easy and it’s not fast, it is a day by day, tedious and repetitive grind, whoever gains control of your brother will be the most unpopular person to him while he is still sick. Once he is stable and lucid it is likely he will become incredibly grateful and glad someone stood up for him when he couldn’t. Having guardianship lets the guardian sit in on medical and psych appointments (bypassing HIPPA) so you or whoever can say “No, those meds are NOT working, and this is what happened while he took them” Truth in the appointments is the only thing that will make progress. I did this week after week with my son for at least 5 years give or take before he ended up on Clozapine which finally killed his voices entirely and then he started to become more the son I always knew and loved.

It’s different for everybody. Medicine compliance is everything. My son was prescribed at least 6 other less effective medications before we landed on clozapine.

Getting away from drugs is critical. Some psychiatrists will refuse to treat a patient who is actively using. For me, having control over my son’s finances and transportation eliminated his ability to obtain drugs especially after we moved farther away from a problematic neighborhood. Some mental health facilities offer “dual diagnosis” treatment which sounds possibly right for your brother, it addresses both addiction and the mental health problems together.

One place I know that definitely does this besides Concord is Maryhaven and I think they have a few locations (not sure) they have some residential too I believe. Mental Health Services offered at MaryhavenMaryhaven

One last thing that I have found to be a good reference for odd necessities, housing, food help, and a whole host of other things (you can literally ask them for a referral for almost anything is 211. They may not have all the answers, but they may know someone who does. Ohio Bridges: Other Resources: 211

I know I’ve thrown a ton of information at you in my reply. I apologize if it is overwhelming. Everything about loving and caring for a mentally ill family member is overwhelming. It’s not for the faint of heart. I use to call my days I spent focused on my son everyday as a “labor of love” --much suffered over those years, the stress of it was almost debilitating. I eventually learned to take better care of myself and that my efforts for my son did not mean I had to neglect myself. That was a hard lesson for me as I had to go on disability myself to be able to medically and emotionally care for myself along with my son. Even though our crisis emergencies are long in the past now, I still see a therapist regularly for myself. I advise any family member dealing with a loved one with serious mental health issues to get help for themselves if they can. Not because they are ill but because it helps keep you grounded and gives you a unbiased, neutral, non-family listener to what you are experiencing through all of this. It helps me tremendously.

Consider me an ally. If you ever have questions are just want to vent. I am not a professional anything except a mom of an adult son (now 39) who has (along with him) survived his diagnosis thus far.
One last thing is along this journey whenever the time is right, your brother should have a regular doctor to give him regular checkups, sometimes, unknown health issues can make mental health worse or more complicated. That’s all, I’m going to close now (hah) I promise. I could probably go on forever, but I won’t. Deep down I truly want your brother to find the help he needs and get as well as possible and for your family to know peace and healing.
Stay well and best of wishes going forward. Sincerely, Catherine


In addition to all of @Catherine’s lived-experience advice, I Am Not Sick, I Don’t Need Help! How to Help Someone Accept Treatment is standard reading for everyone in this group


@DigbyDark , you must remember that you are doing the best you can in a bad situation. Don’t fault yourself or your attempts to help.

Violence is illegal whether a person is drunk, drugged or mentally unstable. You must continue to call the police at each violent incident. And don’t drop the charges, if the police bring charges. My daughter was Baker Acted 5 times (two times she was arrested first), and I always hated myself each time, but she was out of control. Eventually, I asked the judge for medication help, and a long acting injection was ordered for her, as she would just stop pills. THAT saved us, she is still on the shot, though no longer court-ordered, and has a new, good life.

No, you don’t have to wait for him to seriously hurt someone. EACH verbal threat of harm is assault, EACH unwanted touch is battery even a light touch. Use the law, even if it takes repeated attempts and even if the hospital or jail doesn’t respond as you wish. Eventually, something will work. With schizophrenia, it is the old saying “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

Good luck, and I hope you find bits of peace for yourself every day.


Please keep yourself safe.

@oldladyblue is correct in her recommendations to file charges and get the court involved.

We didn’t with my brother (for the longest time) and only now that we let some of the charges stick (as well as a family health crisis that means he CANNOT come home) have we finally achieved some stability.

He has permanent housing with court ordered long acting injectables and for other health conditions he wouldn’t consent to be treated while he was actively experiencing psychosis.

All this being said, it isn’t easy, especially for a mother. On a more personal note, mine still hates that we have my brother separated from the family (considering she has a MH Dx of her own that is well controlled with out-patient treatment) but it is for the best. While he is her baby, he risks killing himself or someone else while actively in his delusions. Saving your sibling and your mother entails recognizing your family member does not currently have the faculties to save themselves. It is intrusive, it is unkind, the stigma and simple real life difficulties of coping with someone with mental illness is not something our families would wish on anyone if we had the chance. Unfortunately getting the court involved is often the only solution when we have exhausted the other options of “non-violent” (meaning no police involvement) level care.

I am so sorry you are going through this. It is never easy. Please keep triplicate records of what you can (case numbers, officer details, report dates, ect) so that others can follow up when they need to for charges ect. If it sounds like too much making a journal with a basic 5W (Who, What, When, Where, and Why) is the simplest way to document everything. Take pictures once or twice a week as the dates are written down and just keep working toward getting the help your family member needs.


@DigbyDark I hope you know that you are receiving helpful posts and that you come back here for moral support for yourself and your family. This site is a place to find compassion in a harsh harsh world that doesn’t deal well with severe mental illness very well at all. But we have to do the best we can for our families. @Wederington034985 , @Catherine and @caregiver1 have been battling the world for their loved ones for years, and WANT you to do better with your situation. Please post or reach out with direct messages if you care to so you don’t feel so alone.

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Thank you all for the advice. I’m going to be going through all the posts and links and try to put it all to use.


Here is an update for everyone. Yesterday, he woke up in a good mood. Even hugging and putting his arm around our mother.
Something changed though, and he was given some money by his father, who does not live with us. He tried to get my mother to give him a ride to get drugs, and she refused, so he got violent with her again. He choked her and only stopped because I was going to spray him with pepper spray while my sister called the police. He ran out of the house, but the police found him.
This time they decided to charge him with domestic violence. I have written a list of requests we have for the prosecutor and judge based on the advice from this forum. My mother and sister are going to the courthouse this morning to present it to them. I will update you with what happens.
Thanks for the helpful advice. It feels so nice knowing I’m not alone in dealing with these problems.


Best of luck! Maybe the judge can court order him into dual diagnosis treatment. I wish the best outcome.

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That is some news. Obviously is horrible for your brother and for your family members but it is a place to start. Best of luck. I hope your mother is doing well. Please remember to take care of yourself as this is stressful as heck.

:mending_heart: :expressionless:

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