Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Younger brother has schizophrenia wont seek help

My brother has schizophrenia, i just moved back home after being on my own in another state 13 years, how do you force someone to seek help? He seems to think i am in some sort of satanic cult and believes my dogs are possesed. I want to get conservitorship over him so that we could force him to take medication. I need recomendations, he is 27 and has a 6 year old son

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Short of a court order, you can’t force treatment - unfortunately.

And, if the treatment is forced, the person usually stops it as soon as they can.

Everyone recommends a book called I’m not sick, I don’t need help by Dr Xaviar Amador.
It teaches the LEAP method to help persuade the person to accept treatment even if they never acknowledge they are sick.

I ordered my copy off Amazon, but there are online videos as well.

This link has some good information about it - it’s another thread on this site:

If he becomes a danger to himself or others, you can ask for him to be evaluated for involuntary hospitalization - that’s usually up to a 30-day hold, but people rarely stay in the hospital for 30 days.

The best thing to do is learn what the laws are in your state about involuntary hospitalization, etc. so you’re prepared. NAMI is a good resource. So is your local crisis hotline if you have one.

Thank You so much! I will have to order this book.

The first thing you will learn is forced care is not easy and as @slw said, does not have long term success because your goal is medicated care is not the patients.
Most places have varying degrees of what constitutes immediate danger to self or others so it is a good idea to find out what it is in your area. Also what we so painfully learned this spring was a court order is only the beginning of the battle because unless you can afford private pay, the insurance company also has to be on board or they stop paying and the hospital will release the patient. Which in our case reinforced the “see I am not sick” mentality.
This forum is a good resource in getting an idea of what living day to day with a mentally ill loved one can be like. You will learn about a new normal and how to cope —or on really bad days, a place to vent.
Hang in there and hope it goes well for you.


Your brother is very fortunate to have a supportive sibling. With a conservatorship can you force someone to take medication? In the USA and correct me if I’m wrong but I don’t think you can force anyone to take medication.

Could your family organize an intervention? There are professionals trained for such meetings that may be able to help you. I found that initially withholding something got my son into treatment. For him it was his car. I realize that this may be more challenging with a 27 year old but possibly the mother of the child has some tricks up her sleeve that may “force” him into treatment. I sure hope he gets medicated soon💛

I spoke to a social worker who has 10 plus years on experiance in this and said what she recomends to get treatment started is to force him to act out then call cops should he calm down prior, push buttons again. My mom and dad are against this 100%

My brother thinks my sister and i are a part of some satanic cult and thinks my dogs are demon possesed, he hides behind his pentocostal christian faith and says God has this all in his hands and goes off on my folks for allowing my sister and i to be around. But if he steals money and buys booz he wants to go to gay clubs and bars. He knows the laws so when i called cops to have him taken away after he had a bad day and was uncontrolable he regained composure told cops hes fine and we are the crazy ones.

I don’t have the degree but am inclined to side with your parents. Not because I disagree with involuntary admits, but because I don’t think any button pushing will help and long term may damage any trust you hope to build.

Just a suggestion, if you are considering this, please speak to your local police force first. I say this because we pursued our first involuntary admit this year. After getting the order to pick him up and transport to a local hospital we were told if he acts aggressive or even appears to have a weapon, the officers will shoot. Yes we desperately wanted help, but not at the possible expense of his life. So find out how the police in your area would “calm him down” and how far they will go to subdue him. And you might want to ask how to build a case. Because he may think he knows the law, but if you have a diagnosis and start proving a history needed for calls, the police may be able to make a judgement call and take him in despite his ability to pull it together for a few minutes. You may find the second he finds out they aren’t buying his act, his composure will change. Wishing you the best.

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I wouldn’t do it either, but I understand why you received that advice. In my opinion, it’s too risky for a variety of reasons as @thereisalwayshope wrote.

Is there a crisis team in your area that is attached to your local health department? That is how we were able to interact with the system to try to get our family member treatment. If needed, they have police that work with them and are really compassionate.

Just throwing this out there, the laws in your state might be different than mine, but if you get a conservatorship over him it may carry with it some very big changes in store for him like the loss of a driver’s license (if he even has one), the loss of the right to vote, the loss of any control over his checking account (etc.), and probably the loss of any custody of his son. What does he think about your plans?

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I agree.

From my perspective, this would make me even more paranoid about the brother. And doing little tricks to get the police to take him in might just get his brother wounded or killed in the process.

It sounds to me like he could benefit from talking to a therapist, because it sounds like he is having a difficult time accepting that he is gay or bi. That can cause a huge amount of stress on him.

That is exactly how I got my son into treatment. I locked up his car keys and refused to give them back until he started treatment which included the medical clearance. He became angry and verbally threatened me and postured toward me. I contacted the police and they took him in. I knew the car would be enough to push his buttons. Thank goodness it worked out and he’s had 18 months of stability so far. Sometimes baiting the lived one into an incident is the only way to get them the help they need.

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I would suggest finding out if there are agencies in your area that have ACT teams. They deal with people who have a mental illness and can help. Look into this. Good luck!