Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

What helps you get family members w/ sz to go on outings?

Just wondering is anyone having trouble getting family member w/ sz to go out ? If so, how do you get them motivated to go anywhere? My son has been diagnosed with sz or schizoaffective from different doctors and I notice he might have schizoaffective because he has his ups and downs. I have notice hes afraid most of time to be out for long periods of times so we have very short outings if any at all. I guess I just need any tips on what has helped you as a caregiver to get your loved one out once in awhile or having sz & what has helped you to go out into public places or outings?

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Give me plenty of notice.
Go when it’s slowest or least crowded.
Tell me ahead of time exactly who will be at family functions or parties.
If possible take me to places I’ve been before and liked.
But these rules can be broken sometimes.
Tell me I look fine and nobody can tell I have schizophrenia.
Ask me how I’m doing.
Ask me if I’m doing alright.


Oh thank you sooo much nick…

Glad to help…:slight_smile:

Make sure you limit the exposure to stressful situations and plan recovery time. Also make sure the person with Sz has a way out of the situation if they become overwhelmed.

I don’t like being pushed into situations on short or no notice. Consider short or no notice to be a stress amplifier.

I use my Smartphone to switch my attention from things that are bothering me when I’m out in public. My wife has learned to leave that alone as this lets me last an entire evening versus trying to escape early.

Don’t force us into situations that we know we won’t be able to handle.


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I need to know where I am going - how far it is from home, who else is going to be there - I rarely go on outings

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Outings have to be brief…

A movie and back
Dinner at a restaurant and back
A drive round the dam or lake and back
A bbq with very few friends or family and back
Grocery store and back
Haircut and back
A visit to a friend or family member and back

I just can’t do many things in one day. I have to get rest in after an activity as it tires my mind and body.

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Ya I have problems in going out and meeting people, even that I look and act quite normal with people I still don’t care much about talking stupid daily stuff, but u have to …my parents pushed me a lot to go out regularly, and I think it helps, because most of the times I got out I did have fun so I do remember that when I don’t feel like it and the next time I’m invited to go somewhere I push my self and run out fast cause I know that I would feel much much better, counting on my previous experiences…but it took years to build up, hey it’s better than nothing :slight_smile:


Being away from home is an assault on the senses. Much of the sz condition is being overstimulated and having to process sensory inputs consciously-- not automatically.

So quiet is good, familiar is good, calming is good; loud, unfamiliar and exciting are generally all bad. Goes for the environment and the people in the environment.


he’s got to want to go out

the thing that helped me was the fact that my mum had a dog and my mum use to ask me to go on an errand and i hated not being able to do much so i took the dog for safety, bc i got very scared and i was paranoid about what might happen, when i was like that i thought everybody was out to get me and it was so debilitating so thats how the dog helped me.

i had a friend from the mental health team take me out individually when i was just released from hospital and i remember we went to the local baths and used the steam room and jacuzzi if it was free, was great to get out and the person i was with made me feel safe,

there was another person that helped me individually when i left hospital again and he took me out to shoot pool and that was pretty good and i felt safe with him also,

does he have any interests of any kind? maybe he needs some individual care like a friend or someone to go out with other than yourself of course.


We keep it short, he lets me know when it’s enough for him. I never push the issue, if he wants to go that is great. If we go out to eat then outdoor cafe (in good weather) is better than inside. Stores after the crowds are gone, he doesn’t like the way his sister’s house feels, so we meet up with her elsewhere. It helps that he lets me know why he doesn’t want to go to a certain place, makes planning easier.

My answers are pretty much the same as above.
If my son wants to do errands-he usually wants me to go with him. When he was on his meds, he never seemed to have a problem taking buses etc,
Even if he always says no to something-he does want to be asked without being forced.

Update....  I have been getting my son out more often by asking if he wants to get his favorite drink @ jamba juice or a  yogurt.   We have also went to movies, 1 art class ,community pool with family for a bit , church last sunday with his (favorite pastor) on satellite at local movie theatre.  He also asked me if we can go out tomorrow and get a yogurt!  Very short outing but nice just to get him out and be around people for a bit.  Thanks for all your input/ suggestions that has helped you because it really helps me to help my son understand my son even more~~~~~ !  I have also figured out if we all go out as family locally..... I think it is a good idea to take 2 cars if other family members would like to stay out longer than we can, he won't feel bad if he has to go home earlier......

that’s really awesome…good for you guys !!

With me I’d say that it’s like trying to get someone who is terrified of heights to go to the edge of the Grand Canyon, or Niagara Falls. I loved to go camping when I was a boy scout and would love to go on an outing like that where I would mostly be more interested in nature and the new scenery than the disturbance that being around others has on me now, but they would be absorbed too much themselves with nature for it to be troublesome for me.

My son has a few places he likes to go, we tend to return to those places. People at the coffee shop he likes are getting to know him, and also a chinese restaurant. He likes to go to the park sometimes too, or the art museum. I pretty much let him take the lead, and only stay as long as he’s comfortable. Sometimes I feel he cant possibly be enjoying this, walking so fast thru the galleries, but then he will say, isnt this great?!

These are great and insightful replies!

For my daughter it is a routine. Every Thursday we go to Costco together & get coffee (usually Starbucks). Depending on how she is feeling she will either go in with me or sit in the car and listen to the radio. We might add a thing or two but usually no more than about 1&1/2hrs.

That’s so good to hear!

@Alex Was there a time when you didn’t go out at all? My son hasn’t left the house for over a month now. Thank you for your answers above. I was pushing him to go out once a day (before we discovered his situation) and he would but then we’d see him standing on street corners - which wasn’t a good idea.