Feeling Sad---Son is Homeless

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Feeling Sad, Jul 7, 2015.

  1. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    This is what schizophrenia is like. It's a simulation for those who don't know. It's very short, but tells us what her son is going through and why it is hard for him to "know" and help himself.

    Schizophrenia Simulated
  2. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    I am still having great difficulty accepting the current situation. Yes, the part that required filing a restraining order against my own son. Total disbelief. Just, like a scared robot (could a robot ever be scared?). Yes, I had to protect my other son. I just don't register My danger.

    But the fact that I could be in imminent danger from my son. With my PTSD, I numb out without will. I block out even remembering the most scary insidences. I minimize their danger. I have done this since I was 11. Unfortunately I am very astute at this without even trying.

    I have been told that I need to work on this so that I do not have life long PTSD. When I am fearful, it gives me break - through simple partial seizures from my craniotomy, i.e. transitory tingling on my right side. I also have phantom sensations of touch. It feels like someone is touching the right side of my head when I am scared. Getting reduced sleep and being under constant fear has greatly increased my cortisol levels. I became pre diabetic last year. I need to get my PTSD under contol.

    I read and write down a lot of any information pertaining to what I am going through. I force myself to read actual cases of violence. And reread...and reread!!! It is very difficult! I need to be able to not numb out and minimize or forget what happened to me. This increases my fear, but helps me to realize the truth and not numb out.

    With therapy, I have been able to bring to active consciousness events that I down-play. It is very hard work, but very necessary. I have blocked out a lot.

    I had mentioned before, I think, that about 3 weeks before the incident of his command hallucinations, he had threatened my life in a more violent way. Two weeks before this, he had flipped a large table with an antique lamp, marble statue, etc. on it across the room. I had been discussing seeing a doctor.

    On this evening, I had tried, yet again, in a calm moment, to bring up his seeing a doctor. He poured a 2 liter sized bottle all over the students' tests that I was correcting. I told him firmly that I would have to call the police if he continued to act out. I had started to tell him weeks earlier that he could no longer live in my home if he did not get help to address his violence.

    He took a glass bottle by the neck, cracked it against the counter in the kitchen, and held it out directly to my throat. He glared at me and shouted, "Call the police and see what happens to you!" His face had an expression that I had never seen before.

    He just must have seen my face of sheer horror. His demeanor quickly changed and he smiled. He laughed a very nervous laugh and said, "I was just joking. I will clean it up". He had NEVER cleaned anything up before. Ever.

    I quickly left the house. I went the next day after work to the courthouse. I still had not decided if I should file an eviction or a restraining order. I was told there to file a restraining order, but decided to address the issue after school was out in 3 weeks... He was still, after all, my son.

    The command hallucination ordering my son to kill me took place on my first official day of Summer.

    It has been discussed, in therapy, that the bottle incident was not just a joke, but rather a practice attempt to kill me or worse, a real attempt. This is a very chilling realization, to say the least. I have minimized this incident. I could not even think that my own son could even do this...actually kill me! My mind wants to believe him, that it was just a "joke"...a very sick...bizarre joke. But, it wasn't.

    Perhaps it was my face full of surprise and sheer terror that made him stop. His voices were with him always, telling him to do things. He did not talk to them outside of his room, but they were still very present. I have to realize that they could of been shouting to him to kill me right then! Did he 'chicken out'? Did he, on some level, realize what he was about to do? Did his love for me override the commands from his voices? I had heard him, soon after in his room, begging for them to "come back" and "not leave him". Were they 'mad' at him for not following their orders?

    Most poor women who are killed by their adult paranoid schizophrenic sons have no warning. Yes, they have emergency contact lists and plan to "sprint from the house" when there are any signs of danger. One poor woman's last text to her husband said that it was hard dealing with her son, and that she did not want to fear him. She ended the text by saying, "I know that I will survive".

    I still block out recognizing this possibility. It does not register. I keep having active flashbacks of his violent expression and having the jagged bottle held to my throat. It must be registering on some level. On some primal level. I just cannot accept it. It is My SON! My previously wonderful, protective, loving son...

    I have been told that I was in extreme danger that day.

    This is what I cannot accept...that my own son would have the capability to actualize harm me, let alone kill me!!! I have been his mother for 35 years. I have forced myself to read actual cases of mothers being killed my their adult paranoid schizophrenic sons. They all were actively trying to get their sons to seek treatment...initial, ongoing, increasing medications, changing medications, complying with medications, or hospitalization. ..but treatment. These poor women were all killed while they were trying to help their sons! They were trying, in a living and kind way, for their sons to realize that they needed treatment...that they were even ill or that they needed a doctor or medications.

    PTSD is a very strange thing. Yes, it is a natural defense to try to block out something terrifying. It still does not register...not My SON...my loving son... Please God, Not My SON!!!
  3. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    There are several bullet points here. The first is objective and present danger.
    Do you believe you are in imminent danger now?

    If so, what do you need to do to protect yourself? Call the police and make a plan? Move from your home? If you are in danger...something needs to be done. Now.

    The second bullet point is the pain you suffer trying to grasp that your son would kill you.
    It was the illness that has taken possession of your son, not your son. Your son is dominated and controlled by the illness. Your son who loves you is still there, but not reachable without treatment.

    Third, your intrapsychic coming to terms with these realities. This is the realm of your therapist and your therapeutic relationship. Anything anybody says here has to be viewed through doubting eyes.

    This is what I hope I would tell myself:

    Part one is coming to grips with the reality of the threat and danger. What we need to do to accept that danger and protect yourself accordingly.

    Part two is dealing with the residual trauma itself, what we are calling the symptoms of PTSD.

    By reading the stories of dead mothers, I see what you are doing. You are trying to force yourself to accept the reality of the danger you were in and still may be in.

    Doing this may be reactivating PTSD symptoms.

    Let me put it another way: Forcing oneself to see objective danger, may itself be terrorizing.

    Could you talk to your therapist about doing that flooding in therapy only, where you have support and somebody who can help you stay in the here and now?

    This is my take: There is a need here to throw down a gauntlet. To decide, on faith, that you acted responsibly and necessarily.

    I was in danger. I acted to protect everybody.

    To make this decision, independent of certainty. Independent of feelings, independent of data and corroboration.

    Because who you are is a loving and committed and responsible Mother. Give yourself this. You would never have acted irresponsibly or precipitously. You did not. By mandate. Tell yourself that.

    This decision entails whether or not you will hold faith with yourself. Whether you will honor your need to be safe and feel safe. Now.

    Now it seems you are putting the cart before the horse. You are demanding of yourself absolute proof....in order to believe in yourself.

    The decision must be made that you deserve to be valued and treated with compassion and self-care and self-protection. Now. This second. By mandate.

    If you decide to do this, all of these agonies can be put to rest, for right now. It may not happen right away, and it may not put them to rest for a long time, but I believe deciding will help. Because now you do not have all the answers. You are in a spiral of self-doubt and uncertainty. It can go nowhere good, right now.

    You can decide, like a good Mother to yourself, that xx, xx, and xx is not good for you. Or xx, xxx, xxx is.

    Does reviewing the narrative...whatever...undermine your tranquility or reinforce your strength and resolve? You can decide that.

    With the help of your therapist, you can decide.

    Like a good mother would do. You are a good mother.

    All of these things happened:
    You can decide to honor and protect yourself. To soothe yourself. To rest.

    You can decide what kinds of thoughts and actions would be those that will help or hurt you. You have some control here.
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    Last edited: Aug 5, 2015
  4. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    Thank you so much Copa. You always make me cry, but they are healing tears.

    Yes, I have been told that both my youngest son and I are still in real danger. We have an alarm system. We have more lights on outside and inside. I carry mace. I have been told to go to the gym instead of walking around the tract by myself. I should not ever park off by myself away from a lot of people. I have been asked if he knows where I teach. No, I have never told him since he has been ill, but it is very easy to find out online. I have been told to be very careful and always mindfull. I have been told that my youngest son should never see him unless it is in a hospital or at the police station with a lot of people present. I have talked about him about this. He responded, "Do you think I'm nuts?" I have also been told that he should never see him.

    Yes, the less severe therapist questioned why I write down notes to read and why I force myself to read violent cases. She understood why...but had the same concerns as you. You are right. It is not helping my PTSD. I know that...but I am trying to stop my numbing out. It is probably way too soon.

    I just do not want to minimize anymore. Maybe my consciousness is not ready yet... you are both correct, I should stop...at least for now. I will try to stop. It is not helping. It is just so very difficult to accept as fact!

    I know that I did the only thing that I could have done in this situation to keep us safe and protect my ill son from his actions. I was just praying that he would qualify for an involuntary commitment. I was so afraid that, I guess, that I never really thought of the flipside . . .that he would not qualify. I knew that I had to do everything possible for him to receive help. I needed to know that I did the upmost possible for him. I got the very best people in place. I waited a few more days in the hotel to have them on duty. But, he was just served and escorted away... They told my youngest son that they saw a lot of signs, but it was legally not enough. He has to state to them his delusions or hallucinations. Or I have to have visible marks on me.

    I am still in a haze. I want to wake up and all it all be gone!
  5. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    Hi. It has been a few days.

    Just trying to hold on...and get through each day. I am really dreading going back to work. Yes, I will be busy. Yes, I will be focused on something else and helping others, but I feel so drained and tired. How am I going to perform? I cannot think clearly anymore. How do I pull it off without others seeing that I am totally falling apart? I have to gear up for a new school year...prepare the class, meet new parents and students. I feel like I am falling apart...too much work to do.

    I decided to take a trip up North to visit my son who is away at college. It is my only trip of the Summer Break. It has been, for the most part, nice....until this evening.

    I came up Friday on the train and have been site-seeing. I have felt like crying all of the time... I constantly have that ache in your throat right before you cry. My heart is breaking. I keep reading the wonderful words of support from this site and a quick 'cheat sheet" of supportive phrases that I keep in my purse. I have been strong and positive for my son...until tonight.

    My son had a friend's baby shower to go to, so he dropped me off in town. I had a great time shopping, walking, and site-seeing for 8 hours. Then my son informed me that he was coming from another town, where the party had taken place, to pick me up. He was going to get gas first.

    I was glad, because it was 8:00 and getting dark. I was tired and was looking forward to getting back to his place, changing into a nightgown, and watching t.v.

    I wolfed down something that I was eating and told him that I would be in a certain parking lot. I rushed there and waited...and waited.

    A while later, he called me to say that his car was on empty...and that he couldn't get the door to the gas tank open. I was in a strange town, most restrooms were closed, most shops were closed, and I did not know anyone.

    I was like my paranoid schizophrenic newly homeless son. Alone, scared, helpless, and did not know where to turn.

    My phone was dying. I tried to get a bus. I did not know where it stopped. I ran and missed it. I did not know where my son's rental room was...I knew the town, but not the streets. I wandered around town. I did not know what to do... My phone was almost dead. My youngest son back home was trying to get me bus schedules and then a room for the night in a hotel.

    My phone was dying soon. How could I be reached? How could I get help? I knew that I had to be on the train...in yet another town, early the next morning to make it back for my first day back to school on Wednesday morning for a mandatory inservice.

    I was alone, scared, tired, andI had to use a restroom. I did not know anyone. I did not know where I was going to sleep.

    I was my homeless son. I know how he feels every night. In fact, he has it much worse. I have money. I have people to call that care about me... I am not afraid of people and can ask strangers for help. I know that I will eventually make it back home...

    Every night, I worry about my son.

    Two hours later, my middle son finally pried the door open. I waited outside of a building in the dark. Alone. I was shook up. I already felt sad my whole trip, but now...I felt much worse!

    I was upset when my son finally showed up. I could not talk. I was not mad at him. I was mad at life...at the broken health care system...at myself because I had 'failed' my schizophrenic son...and at the fact that my son is out there...somewhere...alone, confused, and scared.

    I did not want my son to be homeless. That was never my intent, but, sadly, he is. I never thought that I could have felt worse...but I do.

    I am not able to help my son because of his 'rights' and he does not even realize that he needs help. Crazy mixed-up world!!! Does he even understand why I had to make him leave? Does he even know that I love him? Will he EVER know?

    How am I going to keep it together and pull off the start of a new school year???? I feel like I am going to literally fall apart....

    My severe therapist had told me that he is still in town because he is like a shark..."circling around the water where there is blood". My kinder therapist said that he is staying in town because he loves us and wants to be near. She asked, "Do you know why he is staying away? He loves you. He doesn't want to hurt you". Needless to say...I am not going back to the severe therapist. The kinder therapist even gave me a small stone with the word "Hope" on it. Yes, she is giving me hope... I NEED to hold onto hope...that he is okay...he is going to get help...he is going to get better...and one day, I WILL see him again.
  6. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi Feeling,

    What an unfortunate experience to be stranded like that. You were very brave and independent to do what you did.

    You know that most of us would have fallen apart in those circumstances.

    We are not our normal selves now. At least I am not. A lot of times, I have not even wanted to leave the house. But I am getting better now. I am even planning a train trip cross country.

    With your son the thing is this: You had no good and easy choices. Only hard ones. You made the best choice of those you had.

    The reality is that you do not know how your son is feeling and how he is doing.

    He may have found a place to feel safe, and a routine that is comfortable. He may have been admitted to a treatment facility.

    The thing is you do not know.

    The thing that is clear is that you could not have gone on like you were. Even if it had been safe, it was not good for your son.

    There is potential now, with treatment, for him to improve and have a life. Even if he is having a hard time, he is now living real life.

    You imagine things as very bad. How does that help you? Or him? Again, you do not know. You have no control. It does not help him or you to go there. You know that.

    I think you go there for your guilt. You imagine that it will protect him if you suffer. It will not. That is magical thinking. That you suffer, will affect his circumstances not at all.

    You cannot compare your psyche, your fears, to his. Your minds do not work the same. All of that agony is just that. Agony. Wasted energy. Wasted life. Your love for your son is so great, I do not believe you would want to, in his name, to live in agony and futility.

    You will need to get a handle on yourself. For him.

    I believe he knows and feels your love. For him, you can find a place of love and devotion and peace in your heart. I believe that energy will touch him. I do not know why I believe that. I just do.

    Even if you could divine what he feels, how would it help him? He has got to work this out himself. Or not. He is an adult male. This is the 21rst century. There are resources in the community mentally health system to care for people such as your son and my own. They can do this. Others do.

    I am going to say something harsh here: keeping your son home with you, you did as much or more for yourself, as for him.

    He has a chance now. It is safer for everybody, I believe that.

    I have had to endure my son homeless, too. It was hard, but I had to do it. And my son has a serious physical illness for which he does not take the treatment that would control it.

    If I think about it, I get frantic too. But I can only take so much, so I try not to go there.

    I make that choice to not, because I want to live. If I torture I myself too much, I know it wil debilitate me. There will be a point past which I will not come back.

    I want to be here for my son, but not be consumed by him or by my worry over him.

    As far as school, you wil do it because you have to. You are a professional and you will rise to the occasion.

    I wish with all my heart that it had not come to this.

    But, I think the only way to handle this is to turn it over to the divine. I think of the currents in the ocean that carried that Malaysian air plane to Madagascar. Thousands and thousands of miles.

    Those currents will carry your son to you. We do not know when or how...but in cases like this we must believe.

    The destiny of your son is no longer in your hands. That is a good thing. For a long time you could no longer protect him or give him what he needs.

    I know your son knew what happened and why. He more than anybody knew what were his thoughts and feelings. He was the one that battled them hour after hour, day after day. He knows you love him. He knows what happened. For all you know, he might feel relief that the both of you are safe.

    Right now it is in your power to take care of yourself and nothing more. This has to be enough for now. It is your job to learn how to do this. Try to concentrate on what you need to do so that you can become strong enough to live your life.

    There is no other way here, Feeling, for me either. Sometimes I remember that my son might be dying. Or maybe he is not. I am suspended between these possibilities, with no control.

    The only thing I can do is to decide to take care of myself and learn to live well. There is strength in that decision, and there will be for you, too.


    PS If it were me I would ditch that mean guy therapist. What he told you about the circling in the water is sadistic and untrue. I would not even go back.
  7. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Feeling Sad, I am so sorry that you had this scary experience. I am sure you are shook up and exhausted.

    Gently, I am saying this, your experiences and your son's are not the same. I used to do that too, imagine the worst. Feel those feelings of fear and sadness but realize they are not facts. Our feelings are real but they are not facts.

    Hang in there. These are tough times. Look at work as providing some structure for your life and slowly work to get back to some level ground. Your son will take some next steps in his life and because things are now different for him, that change may lead to something good. His story has changed and that gives him a chance to change. You know only too well that the old story was not working for you or for him.

    You are trying to learn to live in the not-knowing. This takes time and work and small steps.

    Get all the rest you can every day. We are here for you. We care.
  8. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    Hi. I wanted to check in with my friends at this site. You are helping me immensely in this difficult ordeal.

    Yes. Dealing with the not knowing is sheer torture. I do not know how my son is doing or where he is. He cannot contact me for 5 years because of the restraining order. Even, without that in place, he has only called me 3 times in the last 9 years while he lived at home. He is afraid of being spied upon. Being taken out of the house by 5 officers was his worst nightmare being realized. He was very afraid of people. He would run to his room if a car came. We had no guests for the last 6 years.

    My fears is that he wove the incident into his delusions...With me as the main character, of course, in the plot against him. I had no other choice because of safety issues. Like Copa said, by "mandate". It has also been mentioned that I needed to take a stand to keep my other son safe.

    I stopped reading about mothers being hurt or killed by their sons. I was trying not to numb out. I am now realizing that the cracking the bottle incident was not a joke when my ill son then held it out and threatened me. I wake up at night in my sleep screaming because of a nightmare about it. Sometimes, I calmly wake up in the middle of the night and think I see a shadow of someone in my bedroom and scream. I now sleep with a nightlight. I wish I had a SO. I stopped going to the severe therapist. She was too pessimistic about the future. The nicer therapist said that it is my ptsd. I guess that I am not numbing out as much...

    My son displayed some negative cognitive deficits due to his schizophrenia. He was gifted and 4 years advanced all through school. He told me that a dog is a mammal... At times, he seemed young. The illness makes it more difficult to reason and plan, and interferes with short term memory. This is why I wanted to keep him safe. I do not want people to take advantage, bully, tease, or hurt him. Also, I am very concerned about the very real threat of suicide. My paternal grandmother's brother killed himself in his 30's. The facilitator of the NAMI support group's schizophrenic son killed himself at 17.

    I would love it if my son called, but I know that he won't. I do not know if he ever will. I hope that on some level, he realizes what caused me to have to call the police and pursue a restraining order. My nicer therapist thinks that he does..and that he is staying away because he doesn't want to hurt me.

    I started school. This was the main reason that I am writing tonight. It is so very difficult. No one there knows what happened or about my ill son. There is too much stigma being an elementary school teacher with a possibly very violent son.

    I feel very, very fragile. I am on automatic mode. People keep complementing me on my new slimmer figure. I keep wondering...can't they see how sad I am? My job is quite stressful and challenging. I feel that I am not able to concentrate as well probably due to lack of sleep and perseveration. I feel like l could cry at any moment. I am the only teacher who does not have air conditioning. It stopped at 9 A.M. on the first day. It did the same last year and it took 3 weeks to repair.

    But enough of the bad news...I love my class. Even the difficult behavior or learning disabilities are challenging me. This is my forte. I am able to work for awhile without thinking about my ill son. I am forced to focus on something else. At times...I have even laughed. I have already worked hard for a new student that needs specialized instruction. I still feel bad...actually mad that I was not able to illicit help for my ill son. But I will carry on...one day at a time and calmly say, "Thank you" when someone compliments my loss of weight.
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  9. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Thank you for checking in with us. Congratulations on letting go the harsh therapist. My last session will be Monday. I let my therapist go too.

    I am glad for you that you have your work. Especially that you can help others. And rise above your own grief when you do so. Try not to be self-conscious, although I know how hard it is. One of the reasons I have not gone back to work is the fear of looking and being vulnerable. But I tell myself that the reality is that people work amidst all kinds of misery. I went to the Pulmonologist Friday and the nurse cried. She was grieving a family member. Actually, I envied her having her work. I think I have hid out too long.

    Life is what it is. Nobody escapes.

    You were living in a prison. No guests in 6 years? Suppressing fear of violent attack?

    Your son chose to not hurt you all of those years. I believe that. He loves you. And his love for you made him fight to maintain a sane, observing part of himself...despite increasing pressure. Both of you went as far as you could go.

    There are so many possible outcomes. Not all of them are bad. I have worked with paranoid schizophrenics. They were stable enough to make a relationship with me and find some contentment in their lives.

    Who knows what any of us has in store?

    You know you had no choice.

    Grieving takes a long, long time. I am grieving the loss of my mother, and the loss of ever having had her as the mother I wanted. Will this hurt last until I die? I do not know. Will my son begin to take his antiviral medicine or will I have to watch my son die before me, and grieve him my whole life? I do not know.

    I have to live with fear and pain every day. Like you do.

    We have only one life. I plan to try to live my life in layers. Of course there will be the current of pain, and grief and fear. But I plan to look for contentment, and happiness and fulfillment and meaning. And a whole lot of fun.

    We have to pay the piper. Everybody. But we can decide to live fully, too.

    Meanwhile, I am giving this grieving as much time as it needs.

    When I first came to this site I was really, really hard on myself. I have changed. Whatever I need is OK. For you, too. Keep posting. You are not alone.
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2015
  10. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    I am so sorry that any of us have to go through such pain. My best friend of over 30 years lost her youngest son 13 years ago at age 10 of Leukemia. He battled it for 4 years. He was my youngest son's best friend. My son still wears 3 rings around his neck on a chain that they both purchased daily in his memory.

    It broke my heart when my friend recently told me that she had not wanted to get out of bed after he died. But, she finally did. She knew that he would have not wanted her to waste her life. She was telling me this to help me now with my grief.

    I carry on because I know that my son, before he was ill, would not want me to waste my life or become ill with grief. He never gave me a moment of concern EVER before he was taken over by this insidious disease.

    Here is to hoping and praying that both of our sons get through this unscathed. They both need to take their medicine! I hate not knowing. If I knew something...anything...I would feel like I could carry on. Not knowing if I will ever see or hear from him again is breaking my heart. Even without a 5 year restraining order, he probably would not contact me. My nicer therapist says that he is probably just mad at me right now. The worst thing is that legally, he cannot contact me. I wish that I would have allowed calls on the restraining order. I just followed directions for filling it out. I think that I was just going through the motions and was numb or in shock.

    I am going to hang onto the hope that the severe therapist was trying to take away. We will both get through this. We both will see our sons ... our healthier sons...in the not too distant future.
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  11. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Yep. He may even be relieved. Because you are safe. Imagine how hard it was for him. He loves you more than anybody. So, of course his delusions would center on the person to whom he was most strongly attached. Think about how much easier it might be for him...absent the constant hypervigilence involved in protecting you...from himself.
    Why don't you change it? You are not the first person who in shock and grief went through the motions mindlessly. Even if you need an attorney to do it (I doubt it), it might be worth it to ease your mind, and guilt.

    I am sorry for your friend who lost her son. That is what I did when I could not get over my mother's death. I went to bed.

    This site has really, really helped me.

    Thank you for keeping in touch. You have people who care about you here.
  12. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    Even if I changed the restraining order, how could I ever let him know of the changes? He just has the original order that says no contact, including calling. I do not even know that he knows that the judge ordered 5 years when I went back to court for the official order. He might not know that it ever stops.

    The first day I drove to the courthouse to start the process. The next day I followed the oral directions and filled out the form. The following day, when I went back to court to go before the judge to receive my temporary restraining order, a family law assistant told me that sometimes you can ask to be allowed to see someone in a mental health hospital. But, I was told upstairs in the domestic violence department that it was too late to change it because the judge had already read it. I do not think that they usually want you to have calls because you might be threatened.

    I hope that you are right and that he, on some level, realizes why I had to file an order and that I love him. I truly think that is why he stopped and said that he was just joking when he held the broken bottle towards me. He maybe realized what he was doing and that he didn't want to hurt me.

    He lacks insight into his illness. With medication and therapy, he could gain insight and have better control over his delusions and voices. He could also think clearer and perhaps work part time or become better socially. I have hoped for this for years.

    The bad thing is that the medications can have side effects, so people go off them. Also, lacking insight into their illness, they can stop taking them. Or, they start to feel better, and then feel that they do not need them. Sometimes they are embarrassed.

    They also can think that the doctors are part of a plot to harm them. They feel that something bad will happen to them if they see a doctor. I feel that my son felt that way.

    Paranoid schizophrenics have the greatest chance of improvement with medication and being able to resume work and activities. The prognosis, I have read, is best if it is caught early. I feel sad that my son's illness wasn't. I tried for 9 years. I feel very guilty for everything.

    I, like many families, was afraid of his outbursts and hoped that he would get better. It is a very difficult decision to call the police.

    I was told that because my life was being threatened from age 11, that I was feeling helpless in this situation. I was trained to be the victim. The thing that finally reached my core being was the command hallucination ordering him to kill me. All of the other insidences I had numbed out. But, that brought back sheer and immediate terror to me from my childhood with my sister. I listened 3 times, in disbelief of what I was hearing, and then I ran out of the house.

    I now know that I should have left the house and called the police when loaded tables were thrown across the room or kitchen cabinets were stabbed. The police need to see evidence. It creates a paper trail for involuntary commitment. But, one has to be very careful and safe. You do not want to be hurt.

    I have read that the best way to prevent violence is to not let it escalate over the years. Police need to be called, when outside safely. Firm boundaries for behavior need to be set up. But, that is much easier said that done. Also, if they have not been diagnosed and/or consented to allow parents to know their medical history as an adult, you have no doctors or case managers to call for help for back-up.

    I was in contact with the mobile crisis unit. I called them several times the next day after violence had occurred. They said that they could not come and help without the police because he was dangerous.
    I wish that I had called them safely right when violence happened. They would have come with the police.

    I asked that night for crisis intervention trained officers, but I was told that I would get whomever was closest. I was told that sometimes the police call the mobile crisis unit and sometimes they don't.

    I guess that I was afraid of my son's repeated threats of killing me if I ever called the poluce. I felt trapped. The one time earlier in 2013 when I called because he was threatening to cut up my face, the police just said out front for me to get an eviction and then they will come back out to serve it. Again....no visual evidence.

    Sadly, love is not enough to help someone with paranoid schizophrenia. That is true with others conditions as well... that is what is breaking our mother hearts.
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  13. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    My biggest fear is that he willl move from state to state because he feels that he is being watched or followed. This is a delusion of his. That he will stay under the radar and not attract the attention of others for strange behaviors to be reported to the police. Or the police themselves, by never breaking a law to be arrested.

    In addition...that he will never seek treatment and just use shelters for the showers because he does not think that he is ill.

    This is my biggest nightmare. That I could never see him again...help him again...or know where he is again.

    I will continue to keep a little money in the bank so that I will know the general location...but I cannot help him to seek help or treatment. His delusions and voices might always keep him away.

    The last time that I called the bank and checked his whereabouts by finding out which branches he withdrew money from, he was still in the general area. He goes into the bank to withdraw money at the teller because he does not have a debit or credit card .

    When he lived in his car for a year, 10 years ago, he went to a different state and subsequently told me that a strange man kept following him. This man showed up everywhere, he said, and was sent to make sure that he never returns home...

    I am trying to be positive. It is exceedingly difficult. I cannot use logic, just hope. Hope that he stays local.
  14. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    By this logic, he probably does not know that it lasts five years, or even one year.

    You cannot control what he thinks. Just what you think. You have guilt about the terms of the order. Change it.
    I know that he knew he had gone too far.
    That is why you have to ally with the part of him that can change. That is what you are doing now. You are standing up for him. And yourself.
    I know.

    Look at it from the other direction: Without any treatment and medication your son protected you. That is powerful.
    Yes. That is why you did the right thing. You are allying with his capacity and potential to do all of those things.
    I know that. You are working very hard on that, your piece of it. Like we all are.

    When the first couple of weeks settle down at school, think about posting more. You will see how similar is your situation with the rest of ours.
    Many of us were.

    You were in a no-win situation and did the best you could.

    Why do you not start a new thread? This one not so many people are getting the alerts. The best way to widen your net is to start new threads.
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2015
  15. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    There has to be a way for you to disconnect from your worst fears. The reality is that you do not know.
    Why not get a private investigator?
  16. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    I know that I am "awfulizing", but it is difficult to not do when he probably does not know reality. I realize, that the future will probably be somewhere in the middle of great and catastrophic.

    I paid thousands to a private investigator 10 years ago. I had to fill out a form so that his monthly fee was automatically taken out of my account. He always just told me where he had been, hotels and campgrounds, etc. I found out that the investigator lived in a different state! It was done all online. Some months he found nothing, but still automatically took money out. It cost me thousands. I finally had to fill out proper paperwork to have it stop.

    I flew up there twice to try to find him.

    The police would stop him and tell him that he should call me because of the missing persons report. He would say that he knows, but couldn't. He never did anything wrong. He returned exactly one year later. He subsequently told me that he was trying to establish residency to attend college. He never went to college again...

    I spoke to someone local this time and he said that it would be very expensive and that they check parking lot surveillance tapes. My ill son told me that he liked to park in residential areas. When I tried to find him before, I was going around major blocks, just circling where he was parking in the middle by houses.

    If they showed up now at the shelter to talk to him, he would run...permanently.
  17. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Feeling, what about becoming your own private investigator?

    I mean, you have to find a way to transform all of this awfulizing to something constructive for YOU. It is too much energy expended in a negative way. With nothing to show for it.

    In time, you will little by little begin to divert yourself...

    Start posting on other threads. See how much your story is like others. Reach out. You will see how it helps. Post on the FOO thread.

    Why don't we learn how to be private investigators online??? There has to be a way. Take a private investigator course. I am serious here.

    I knew a female private detective. She called herself the People's Eye or something like that.

    I know you are miserable. The point for all of us is to try to be less so.
  18. Childofmine

    Childofmine one day at a time

    Feeling Sad, thank you for the update about you and about him.

    Living in the uncertainty is very hard. It is so hard that we will do anything to try to make things "more certain." We think if we know things, then we can do something about it.

    I gently want to disagree with Copa's suggestion that you become a private investigator or hire a private investigator.

    As you so well know, having been there and done that already, knowing doesn't change the situation. Nothing will change the situation until our beloved adult children want to get help. Nothing will change our own situations until we want to get help.

    Most of us find this site when we are completely spent and broken and filled with despair, fear and exhaustion. Nothing we have ever tried has worked, and we are ready for help.

    That is a great day, a really great day, when we are truly ready for help.

    We are without any other resources to help ourselves. And sometimes, we are ready to accept our powerlessness. But often, we turn it over and we take it back, again and again. Because even though we know we can't do anything to change things---we know because we have already tried and tried and tried---and then we read the stories here of so many others who have tried and tried and tried, just like we have---and their outcomes are the same---but even though our minds hear this and accept it, we still can't let go.

    Because letting go isn't purely an intellectual exercise. It is a process. It is a journey. It takes time, and work, and doing things differently, and learning how to let go. It does not come naturally at all, for any of us.

    The task is this, for most of us: learning how to let go. Learning how to accept our own powerlessness over all other people, places and things. We are not helpless---but we are powerless.

    There is so much help for us. That is what this site is all about. Listening and learning and stumbling and falling down and getting back up to try again...all with the help of people who so understand because they are walking the same path.

    Living with uncertainty is something nobody ever wants to accept, and something nobody ever wants to get good at. We love to KNOW.

    But when you take a giant step back, you and I can see clearly that we, all of us, all of us are living with uncertainty every minute of every day.

    The only thing we really have is...this very moment.

    There are no guarantees about anything else.

    Accepting this...living into it...is the pathway to peace, joy, serenity and contentment and to being happy.

    It can be done. It can happen, regardless of what your son does or does not do. That doesn't mean you will ever stop loving him or caring about him or helping him when the time comes that you decide you want to help him. It just means you can be happy in your own life---at the same time---that he is still struggling.

    I never thought that would be possible, but I have learned that it is possible. And it is the best lesson I have ever learned in my life, learning to let go of things I can't control.

    Warm hugs today. You are walking through the forest and it's a hard walk, but you are walking forward. You are doing it. We're here for you, every step of the way.
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  19. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Feeling. COM is right about the private investigator idea.

    I do not know how I could come up with such an idiotic idea. I just feel so bad you are suffering.

    Take anything I say from that place. Keep posting.
  20. Feeling Sad

    Feeling Sad Active Member

    The difficult part is that because of the restraining order that I had to get, he is not allowed to contact me for 5 years. He just received the temporary order from the officers that day with the court date to finalize it. I do not even know if he knows it is for 5 years. He might treat it like forever. He is very paranoid, especially of our neighbors. They all saw him being escorted out by the police and followed out of our track in his car. He would never want to come back or call again.

    My youngest son texted him twice on the cell phone we bought him. He is not on the order, but he never responded. He let the phone die. Ten years ago I bought him a cell phone. He never used it and I never saw it again. During the last 10 years, he has never once called my son. He is paranoid that things are bugged for spying. He only called me 3 times.

    There is never going to be a time that I will be able to decide to help him. It is not in my hands. I cannot decide. The only way that I can help him is through putting money in the bank or if he contacts me, which he is not allowed to do. I would take the call, but he will not call me because of the order and he does not use phones.

    I have no options here. I also have to respect the order and have no contact. Even if someone found him...then what? He would still not agree to seek treatment and it would only serve to make him hide further away in another state. Also, outside of the shelter or banks, he cannot be traced. People sleep in their cars in residential areas between houses on the street and they change locations daily as to not draw attention.

    Paranoid schizophrenics kill themselves more with command hallucination than harm or kill others. My youngest son and I are safe...what about him? 1/10 are successful in committing suicide...1/3 try. I cannot choose to help him. Yes, he was not getting better at home, but now I have zero knowledge of his mental or physical health.

    I had to keep my youngest son safe...from danger and worrying about my safety everyday. He needs to have a normal life. I cannot talk to my youngest son about these worries. He has to feel that the restraining order was the right thing to do. It was the only thing that could be done to keep him safe.

    I am consumed with fear for my ill son. He is like a child in some ways because of his illness. He hasn't had friends, gone to school, or worked in 10 years. I do not want him to get hurt, hurt someone, or hurt himself. This is why I feel so very guilty. I feel like I failed him. I tried my best...but I failed him. I know that I had no other options, but that does not take away my fears. I feel that if he leaves the area, I will literally fall apart.

    I felt like crying all day today. As long as he keeps taking money out...I know that he is alive. I will never know that he is not scared. That is all I have. The very last time that I saw my son's face was when he was having a psychotic episode...I don't want to remember him that way.

    I protected my ill son from his possible violent acts, possible prison, and the possibility of having to live with knowing that he hurt or killed his brother or myself. But, he probably, in his current mental state, doesn't know that this is why I got a restraining order.