Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

What will happen after frank disclosure

I am a retiree in the 70s. My son is in his 40s. He was diagnosed to have Schizophrenia in his early 20s. With the help of medication, he managed to complete his university education with an Arts and a Law Degrees. He took a break for a while to recover from his hectic college life. He has been living quite normally since then. Subsequently, he started working with various law firms for 10 over years. Out of the blue, he gave up his job with the law firm two years ago. He said that it was too stressful for him to cope with working for other employers. He wanted to set up his own firm and requested that I help him in the interim period until his income is stable. I have been helping him with his company and personal expenses for the last two years with my retirement fund. His company is not bringing in much income. Lately, his expenditure is getting higher month by month. I suspect that he might be suffering from “shopping addiction”. If this situation goes on, I am afraid that I would not be able to offer him with financial support in the near future as my retirement fund is running low. I have told him about my low fund situation and that he has to help to take control of his expenses but to no avail. He does not realize that my fund can be used up one day. He is under the mistaken belief that I have lots of money and can provide him with endless financial support.
I want to have a frank talk with him again and show proof with my bank account statement. But I am afraid that the true financial disclosure may shock him into an undesirable state. Will he be too distressed and unable to function normally again? Will the revelation cause him to lose hope and have a relapse of his illness? I am at a lost as to what to do. I would appreciate advice on how I should help him.

When I had to explain to my son how his ssi/ssdi worked, he took it better than I expected. I gave him the booklets that Social Security provides and pointed out that they do not allow me to pay his rent, utilities, clothing or food.

He took it better than I expected and he has complied.

I hope it goes as well when you explain things to your son. I think seeing your plan to help him see it in black and white is a sound idea - of course you know it can always be tricky.

I understand your dilemma. Trying to see the effects in the future of actions in the present is always hard, but especially when there is mental illness involved.

Telling an acceptable truth may be better than hitting him with the whole truth all at one time. Perhaps simply stating that you cannot provide him with endless support might be a starting point. Then outlining how you are going to reduce the amount of money he gets from you. He will get emotional, I’m pretty sure there is no way to avoid that. But you can’t afford to spend until your savings is too low.

I was told once, and it seems to be true, that in a giver/taker situation, the taker almost NEVER volunteers to stop taking. It is the giver that must reduce the giving despite of and often at the emotional upset of the taker. I am going through that in my household right now with my husband’s unemployment and my daughter’s inability to work. It is making me crazy to try to get them to understand and take action. In the meantime, I simply am cutting down on my spending and on how much cash I give them. It is down to as little cash as possible now.

You must handle your financial situation so as not to put yourself in danger of running out of money.


Hello hope & youngladyblue,

Thank you for your sharings. I appreciate your advice. I hope that we will have better time ahead.

May God bless you and give you peace!

Blessed Christmas & Promising New Year


Thanks you so much faith- May God’s blessing be with you and your family - Merry Christmas!

Oh you made me chuckle out loud @faith with the change in my name. I’m not that much younger than you, I turned 62 in November.

I do hope that you can reach some agreements with your son. I’ve had some very direct conversations with my 34 year old daughter since she was released from the hospital Dec 9th on a 30 day Haldol injection (forced meds and hospitalization). She is doing so very well, many/most symptoms of the illness eased up or gone. She spoke to me about not being as good as her brothers, not being able to support herself, and wondering what she will do when I pass on. Heavy thoughts that she obviously couldn’t talk about to me when in psychosis for the past years. I tried to reassure her. The difference in her on this med is amazing. I surely hope she takes her next shot.

I do hope you have better times ahead, and some peace for yourself. It is so hard caring for a loved one with this illness, and you’ve been doing it 20 years. Wow. God bless you too. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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