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The Cons of Coddling the Mentally Ill

Comment

Dear Annie: My parents adopted my brother, "Kyle," when he was 6 weeks old. As he grew up, it was apparent that something wasn't right. When Kyle was 18, he was diagnosed as bipolar and schizophrenic and was put on a cocktail of medications. He is now 30 and living at home with my father. (Mom passed away a few months ago.)

Dad and I have noticed recently that Kyle doesn't appear to be taking his medications. He insists he is being compliant, but he is so delusional that he claims my father's house is actually his and my father needs to move out. He is constantly stealing money from Dad and has a horrible gambling problem. The small amount he gets from Social Security is gone the minute his fingers touch it.

Dad is in control of Kyle's bills and gives him a monthly allowance, but when it's gone, Kyle harasses Dad for more. My father feels like a prisoner in his own home. He won't throw Kyle out of the house, although we have considered admitting him into an adult home. We know Kyle will not go willingly. We don't know what to do. Please help. — Going Crazy

Dear Crazy: You cannot make Kyle compliant, nor can you force him to see a doctor. But your father should get him out of the house, not only for his own sake, but for Kyle's. At some point, Kyle will need to learn how to live independently, and the longer he avoids it, the harder it will be to adjust. You may need legal assistance to remove Kyle, but we hope that won't deter you. The situation will not improve if nothing is done to change it. We also suggest you contact the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (dbsalliance.org) at 1-800-826-3632 for help.

Dear Annie: I am 13 years old. After school, my friend "Cara" sometimes calls and invites me to her house to hang out. But when I get there, she is usually on Facebook or using her iPod Touch. I tell her that this is boring and maybe we should go outside and enjoy the nice weather, but she just waves me off.

But if I ask to use the computer, she gets angry and says that we should go outside. It's like I'm a third wheel when she's playing with her electronics.

Cara and I have had fights in the past, and I always forgive her because I don't like to hold a grudge. But I am wondering if I should end our friendship. Do you have any suggestions? — Fickle Friendship

Dear Friend: You can try to "reprogram" Cara by saying sweetly, "Oh! I didn't realize you were busy! I'll come back tomorrow." And then leave before she can argue with you. After one or two of those, she is likely to put her gadgets aside. Otherwise, let Cara be a Facebook friend, and you can spend your after-school reality time with girls who are more interested in your company.

Dear Annie: The letter from "Desperate for Advice" struck a nerve. She found out a girlfriend tricked her husband, claiming her pregnancy was accidental. Now "Desperate's" husband wants to spill the beans.

I married my wife with the understanding that we would not have any children. A year later, one of her friends let slip that my wife had stopped using birth control. I felt betrayed. My trust was shattered. Counseling helped me see how important motherhood was to my wife, and we eventually had a beautiful daughter. I don't regret it, but even after 23 years, those old resentments occasionally resurface.

I agree with you, Annie. "Desperate" should ask her husband what he hopes to accomplish by telling. It will only bring pain and hurt to everyone. He should keep his mouth shut and stay out of it. I would have been happier not knowing. — Ignorance is Bliss

Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to anniesmailbox@comcast.net, or write to: Annie's Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.

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Comments

26 Comments | Post Comment
LW1-
There has been no mention on violence, but... considering he is so delusional he thinks his father's house is his and is quite willing to evict his own father, chances are that he will NOT react kindly when he sees himself being put out of what he thinks is his. The potential for violence is extremely high. This is a tragedy waiting to happen.

I agree that Kyle has to get out of the house, into a mental facility, adult home or whatever place that will force him to take his medication. How this can be accomplished without putting your father at risk is something that will vary depending on the location. I would suggest you consult a lawyer, a psychiatrist and whatever social workers are in your area to find out what the correct procedure is, lest you find yourself with a problem much bigger than you already have.

However, if your father insists on being a wimp and refuses to put him out of the house, I'm afraid there isn't much you can do. My heart goes out to you.

LW2-
If your friend only wants you as a back-up plan when she gets bored with FaceBook, I see no reason why you should just sit there in waiting for Her Majesty's pleasure. Do what the Annies said. If it works, fine. If it doesn't, then let her think she has a relationship with FaceBook and end up all alone.

LW3-
Yoy may feel you'd have been better off not knowing, but that's you. It's not the case for everybody. Don't be hard on the friend who wants to tell, because there ARE some people who would rather face the pain of knowing than the humiliation of being taken for a ride. This is the same as for affairs - ignorance is not always bliss, especially if you're the only one in the dark.

Comment: #1
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Sat May 28, 2011 9:48 PM
Lise, no place can "force" Kyle to take his medication. He has a legal right to refuse it unless a judge orders him to take it, and that's usually reserved for when someone has already committed a violent crime. He can also be forced to take a medication in a hospital under certain circumstances, but only until he stabilizes, at which point they would have to release him and he could stop taking them again.
Comment: #2
Posted by: Jodie
Sun May 29, 2011 5:54 AM
LW3, the situation there was different. The couple already had two children, so obviously the father was not opposed to fatherhood as you were. He was concerned about the finances.

Sometimes people can take MYOB too far. i used to follow the MYOB rule too until I was attacked by the friend of a friend. He showed up late at my house, claimed he was too drunk to drive and could he phone a cab? I was young--20--and since I knew him, let him in. I was able to fend off his attack--but found out a year later that this was a habit of his. Several of his male buddies knew, but didn't want to say anything. Yeah, thanks for the heads up guys!

If a man really does not want to be a father, this could have serious repercussions for the child that is born. We spay and neuter our animals for the same reasons. Sometimes the responsible thing to do is speak up and take the reactions (bad, usually) on the chin like adults.

I never wanted children. If I was sleeping with a man who lied to me about having a vasectomy, I would be very angry and I would do something about it. Knowledge is power. An informed person can make better decisions about his or her life. The truth may be hard to take, but lies are even harder.

I had a situation similar to this come up recently. A friend of mine had a single male friend housesit for them for two weeks while the were on holiday. When they returned the teenage daughter, who is a computer whiz, found evidence of this man's conversations with young girls online. He's 40, but was posing as an 18 year old. She took the MYOB route and refused to call the police. I would have phoned the police myself, but she was clearly not willing to be cooperative even if I did. She said he was mentally ill and shouldn't be persecuted. As Lise would say, Yrrrrch!

I know the man--not well, but well enough--and when I saw him "friending" people on Facebook, I wrote to everyone I knew and warned them. Young people, children, babies and the unborn, deserve to be protected and loved. MYOB might be fine if it involves an affair between adults, but once kids are involved, the rules change IMO.
Comment: #3
Posted by: irene
Sun May 29, 2011 6:40 AM
Re: Jodie

I assume you're talking about the USA. In Canada, as far as I know, one of the conditions for you to stay in a group home is to take your medications. That'y why so many mentally ill end up in the street, because they refuse to follow even the most basic rules everywhere they go.

And frankly, if what you say is true, even in the case of someone severly delusional and a danger to himself and to others, then the rights of an individual are being carried to ridiculous lengths. There is a difference between someone rational and in control of himself, and someone so disconnected with reality that he would be found not guilty for reason of insanity if "something" should happen. Someone that far gone is no more able to look after himself than a child, and the law ought to take that into account. For someone in that condition to be treated like anyone normally adult and rational is sheer lunacy. Extremes, on either side of the pendulum, are never good for anyome.

And, frankly, I'm not an expert in law, but I don't think this covers someone being institutionalised, which I think this man should be. This is a man who has become convinced that his father's house is his and has no qualms about putting his own father out in the street. Anyone who would actually want to evict the very person who's supporting him and his habit is not exactly thinking with a full deck. He's delusional, increasingly aggressive, addicted, refuses to take his meds and lying about them. Red flags festival, this is a disaster in the making.

Roxe, as a lawyer, or any other lawyer BTL?

Comment: #4
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Sun May 29, 2011 6:50 AM
LW1--The Annies blew it with their answer to LW1. The Annies said "You cannot make Kyle compliant, nor can you force him to see a doctor. But your father should get him out of the house, not only for his own sake, but for Kyle's." Really girls? How is kicking Kyle going to benefit Kyle? What will most likely happen is that he'll join the army of forgotten, homeless mentally ill people who are all but invisible to polite society. Out of sight, out of mind. Wow, what a great solution.

LW2--"It's like I'm a third wheel when she's playing with her electronics." Welcome to the future!
Comment: #5
Posted by: Chris
Sun May 29, 2011 8:06 AM
Re: irene, Your post describe dangerous situations and in those instances it is appropriate to warn people. This was not the case. There was no purpose served by tattling on the wife. This situation does not affect anyone outside of those two. Yes the wife was a moron for blabbing but to try and break up a marriage over the LW's husband's indignation is even more moronic then the blabbing was. This is a big MYOB senario. I can believe all these friendship are OVER. The LW's husband would get better drama and thrills by taking his friend to a NASCAR race.
Comment: #6
Posted by: Penny
Sun May 29, 2011 8:58 AM
I wonder if the medication thing is a state by state issue. I know that here, you *can* force an adult to take medication if either a physician deems him/her a danger to him/herself or others and puts the person in a facility for it (hospital, institution, etc.) *or* if the person has been deemed by a court to be incapable of making decisions for yourself and a judge has appointed someone else the right to make those decisions for you.
Comment: #7
Posted by: dolly
Sun May 29, 2011 9:05 AM
My friend was having a miscarriage and I took her to the hospital. While we were in her partition of the emergency room, we were praying, "Please Jesus, make the bleeding stop" over and over again. We were clasping our hands and whispering when through the wall we heard "I AM JESUS CHRIST, I AM THE CHRIST CHILD, I AM GOD, OH HOW I LOVE THE LORD" and then we heard scuffling and a bunch of thumps (the walls were thinner than the curtains it seemed) followed by a dwindling whine, "Brother Tim told me to get help".

When I had to leave my friends partition to find the nurse, I saw into the next ER partition, there was a man strapped to a table and he was trying to preach through the haze of sedation the hospital had given him. His sisters, mother, aunts and niece were standing around the bed crying. Later we heard through the wall that he was being moved from one adult home to another for schizophrenics when it became clear he was having an episode. The home he was being moved from could not keep him because he refused to take his medication regularly. The home neglected to tell the family when they showed up to transport him that he hadn't taken his meds for the last week.

The family was piled into a fifteen passenger van taking him 300 miles to his new home. When they were a few miles out from the hospital, he tried to strangle his niece. He claimed to be exorcising the demons out of her. Throughout the ride, he had been holding a trial for all the sinners and demons in the van. He suddenly snapped and became violent. He injured the orderly and ER doctor that initially tried to get him out of the van. It took four police officers to remove him. And they were bitten, kicked and scratched.

Because the man was being moved to a facility in another state, he could not be moved by a professional transport. Or at least the family could not afford for whatever professional transports were needed. The hospital where my friend was treated and this man ended up was twenty miles from the border of the next state. It also came out that prior to borrowing the van from their church, the family carefully planned the route they would take and had marked out with directions and everything where every hospital with a psychiatric unit was and where every police station was along the route. They also had a loaded .38 handgun if it came to that. Stun guns, tasers and mace had no effect on this man when he was in a rage. The police took the handgun and promised to return it when the family came back through.

If they had been told "he hasn't had his meds the last seven days" as opposed to being told, "he hasn't been good with his meds" they might have made a different decision. We didn't hear anything else after that because the psychiatric ward came and took the man away. I had one last look at their tearstained faces as they all trooped by. I felt for them.

I felt bad being able to hear this clearly through the wall. The saving grace in all this is that we stopped focusing on the bleeding and got lost in what we could hear coming through the wall. Sometime during the bangs, yarps and yelling, the bleeding had slowed down but we hadn't noticed. We were glued to the show down in the next room. We stopped praying about the bleeding and started thinking about the woman who was sobbing out part of the story, another woman with a raspy voice who interjected when the sobbing lady couldn't talk, others chimed in from time to time with details and I still think about the woman with the lisp who tried to tell them about the ".38 with the bullets in it" and how the police took their gun. Over and over, they stressed they loved him, but since he could be violent, they HAD to send him to a group home. During one of his outbursts, he knocked out several of his sister's teeth.

Because of HIPPA laws, I never did find out how things turned out for the family. They were obviously desperately poor, practiced poor hygiene, woefully uneducated and yet, when it comes to family they stuck together. I found that gives me hope for humanity. You don't have to have a million dollars in the bank to be a good person and have a good family.

My hope for Kyle and his family is that they will band together and I agree with the Annies that Kyle's treatment of his father is an indication of abuse and therefore, Kyle needs to find another home. That doesn't mean the family is abandoning him to the streets. Working with Kyle's healthcare providers and other agencies, there has to be a solution. My best wishes goes to the family trying to do this.
Comment: #8
Posted by: Chelle
Sun May 29, 2011 10:53 AM
To Going Crazy - Another contact is NAMI (National Alliance for Mentally Ill) for a support group. Your father needs to insist brother takes meds or leave the home.The police may need to be involved to get brother out of the home until he starts back on his medication. Brother's gambling may arise from the fear of how he will support himself once dad has passed on. This doesn't make sense but people suffering this disease have the fear of how to support themselves once their parents die and gambling seems like an option to them. Have your father set up a Special Needs Trust for the brother and a place to live after he has passed on or work with the place he gets assistance to get on a list for public housing now. Waiting lists are long but one can get bumped up when the time comes. Your father may need to come stay with you until the brother is out of the home (some states required people be given 30 days notice and yes, it seems at times that these folks have more rights than your father) if the brother won't take his meds. Your father must take responsiblity to do this and remind him that he is not helping his son by not providing his with discipline and structure when he let's the son bully him. Awful situation for you and your father but there is light at the end of the tunnel if you both try to ensure that this man takes his meds and once he realizes he has a place to live after dad is gone, hopefully, he will stop the gambling. This explanation comes from life experience with a family member.
Comment: #9
Posted by: Mandy
Sun May 29, 2011 11:10 AM
Irene, things could have gone so much worse. You are very lucky you were able to fight him off. And you are right, there is no excuse for not telling you what he was doing.
Comment: #10
Posted by: Chelle
Sun May 29, 2011 11:12 AM
Penny, I think it's more of a grey area, or a borderline case. On the one hand, the man has a right to know if the woman he's sleeping with is lying, but you're right, is the greater good served in this case? I'm not sure. But I tend to come down on the side of the child also. There are so many unwanted children, even within marriages, and I think the woman is moronic for two reasons, for lying and for blabbling. The problem with the information is that it's a burdern she's placed on people outside the marriage. Telling the husband might relieve the burden for some people, more so than keeping it to themselves would. That's the problem with blabbling. Once those words are uttered, the information is out of the blabbler's control, just like X-rated photos on the internet.

Honestly, I'm not sure I'd keep quiet in the hypothetical vasectomy scenario I described. I'm wondering if we'd have gotten the same reaction if it had been Woman X writing in, asking if she should tell her friend, Woman Y, that Y's husband was lying about having had a vasectomy? And let's create the same scenario--Y already has two children and is finding that that's enough for her; she doesn't want any more. But herhusband does want more and he's tricking her into believing everything's okay because he's "claiming" he's been snipped? I'd be tempted to let the woman know somehow, even if it was just an anonymous warning of some sort.

Yes, the scenarios I described are dangerous, it's true. But bringing an unwanted child into the world? That's a pretty big issue too in my books. I think a lot of men would agree with me on that one.
Comment: #11
Posted by: irene
Sun May 29, 2011 12:22 PM
LW1 - your father needs to get Kyle out of the house asap. It's just that simple. Let's face it. In the normal course of events, Kyle will outlive Dad. Then what happens? You'll have to deal with Kyle as well as your grief.

If Dad won't make Kyle leave the house, you need to tell him that YOU will not be moving in and taking care of your brother when he's gone and that he needs to talk to a lawyer and make any neccessary arrangements.

LW2 - I think you need to find a "real" friend and let Cora stay in her virtual world.

Re: LW3 - while I agree that going off birth control is a contemptable act... I think any man who doesn't want kids should get a vasectomy instead of leaving the responsibility to the woman.
Comment: #12
Posted by: JMM
Sun May 29, 2011 12:50 PM
Re: irene This is gossip of the worst kind. Sticking your (not yours) nose into something that #1 is none of your (again not yours) business and #2 is third hand information. I call that GOSSIP and malicious gossip at that. Nobody wins and everybody loses.
Comment: #13
Posted by: Penny
Sun May 29, 2011 1:09 PM
Regarding the letter from "Crazy" who's mentally ill brother is making life diffcult for their father. Get him out now! My parents allowed my older, paranoid schozophrenic brother to live with them until they passed away. Their life was literally spent tip toeing around him. When they passed, he was a 60 year man who had never held a proper job. It took us over a year and two lawyers, social workers and a crisis team to get him out of the house so we could sell it. Meanwhile my husband and I were paying all the bills so the house would not go to sale for taxes. All along he treated us with with contempt and disdain. In the end he behaved himself during the eviction and thus the crisis team on hand could not take him. He ended up homeless eventhough we had offered to fund an apartment for him until the house was sold and the proceeds divided. Last I heard he had gotten picked up at our old house where we had not lived since 1972. Sad but a relief that we don't have to deal with him. We never realized how paranoid and dangerous he was until we read his years of daily journal entries. Signed- Still looking over my shoulder
Comment: #14
Posted by: Corky
Sun May 29, 2011 1:42 PM
Penny, I would never trust a "friend" with that kind of information--that I was tricking my husband. I would never trick a man that way to begin with, but hypothetically, if I were, and felt I had to tell SOMEONE, I would tell a member of the clergy or a therapist. They are legally bound to keep secrets. I wouldn't trust a friend with a secret that heavy, because it IS heavy. If I got news like that I wouldn't be able to look the liar or her husband straight in the eye again, but that''s me. A secret like that is just too disturbing.

It's not gossip when you yourself blab about something this big, I'm afraid. Talking about it and then blaming others for gossiping is just immature. These people aren't in high school anymore and a human life is at stake.

@Chelle, we had tenants once where the sister was looking after her mentally ill brother. I think he was ill enough to be hospitalized, but she didn't want that. It consumed her entire life. All she did was work and take care of him. It was noble of her, but the sacrifice just seemed so huge.
Comment: #15
Posted by: irene
Sun May 29, 2011 2:00 PM
The woman who lied to her husband to get pregnant, IS in the same morally abhorrent category as a man who lies about having had a vasectomy, and goes around getting women pregnant as a result. It's amazing to me that some people advocate not telling him the truth about what his wife did. They are essentially advocating being complicit in a crime, or what should be considered one.
I hope that the husband in this case does become informed about what happened, so he can make an informed decision about whether to continue living with the woman.
Re: keeping quiet and "doing what's right for the poor little baby," I wonder how many people who pen those sentiments would be willing to take on raising a baby under those circumstances? If they are, they should contact the Annies and ask that their contact information be published, and offer to raise this one.
Comment: #16
Posted by: sarah morrow
Sun May 29, 2011 3:49 PM
LW3: Just because you didn't want to be told and preferred the "ignorance is bliss" route doesn't mean everyone feels the same as you. Some people would want to do that their spouse did such a terrible thing. I think that if you know for certain that you don't want kids, ever, you should look into getting a vasectomy, or a tubal ligation, problem solved. However, it is safe to assume that the person you love and plan on spending your life with(whether that be a boyfriend/girlfriend, husband/wife) tricks you into doing something like that, it is an absolute betrayal. I can't even begin to fathom why a person would ever deceit someone like that. And yes, perhaps you should have gotten a vasectomy LW3(or if genders were switched, a tubal ligation), that doesn't mean you deserved to be tricked like that. EVER. To suggest other wise is absolutely fucking ludicrous.
Comment: #17
Posted by: fearfulsymmetry
Sun May 29, 2011 4:09 PM
LW3: Please. This "kill the messenger" bit is sad. Do you really think you would have been happy if presented with a "accidental" pregnancy instead of going through councelling and deciding together to have a child?


If you still have pangs of resentment now, think how you would feel about your child if your wife had presented you with an "oops!" baby - especially if you'd discovered her deception later.


Penny, it is NOT "gossip". The original LW heard it from the horse's mouth; from the woman who thought it would be gosh, gee-whiz wonderful to deceive her husband (A friend of the LW and her husband) by tossing away her birth control and having a child he doesn't want.


Not to mention she was selfish enough to BURDEN her friend with a secret she didn't want to know. Selfish, selfish, selfish.


If you want to keep a secret, you keep it to yourself. Or tell someone who CAN'T betray you. You don't flap your lips to a friend of the person you are betraying.
Comment: #18
Posted by: JMM
Sun May 29, 2011 4:53 PM
We went through this with my great nephew 2 years ago. YES a judge can deem the adult unsafe to others and to himself. the judge made my G.N. parents his legals for 1 year and providing he was compliant via all methods--meds, behaviors, treatment, etc they would become UN LEGAL at that time. It was alot of hard work but so far he is holding his own, We are 2 years down the road.
Suggestion, if father is a wimp and can't do it, he CAN sell the house to the daughter for $1 for ownership for a said amount of time. And it could be the father's lifetime if he wants. Legal papers can be drawn up so the father has lifetime residence and the daughter will live there. The father does all bills, taxes, insurances, etc. We did this when hubby's dad was dying of cancer and the lawyer (now local judge) came to the house and set the papers in motion for the court. Fast forward 15 years when grandma died, all was taken care of, no probate, etc. When she entered the nursing home 4 years prior to her death, we had all her mail, bills, etc sent to our home address, again time to sort out junk mail, mailing lists, etc. People who knew her sent to the nursing home to her. People who did not, did not need to contact her.
At least this would be a start in removing the brother out of the house legally, into what ever social services and the legal system could help you with. And you need to get on it before violence takes place. Even tho Minneapolis is about 3 hours from here, we see the news. VERY OFTEN is the same situation played out there, mentally ill adult child murders parents/siblings, etc. They stand in the court as mentally ill, charges never to be brought until delared sane enough to stand trial for murder. And often when it is a SNAPPED mind over something small triggered it.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
To the 13 year old friends. Carly is being a snob about what she owns and you don't have. If she asks you over, tell her a time limit--say 30 minutes is all you have available. If she continues to do her own thing, excuse yourself, tell her mother goodbye and that if Carly wants to do something with you, to please call. If mom asks, just say she wants to play with her toys by herself, so you will be going home. Maybe take a few times, if MOM gets the whole issue of Carly stuck in the electronics, maybe she can step in. You never know, mom may think it is o.k. too. Electronic isolation can come back to haunt big time.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Comment: #19
Posted by: Joyce/MN
Sun May 29, 2011 5:00 PM
Re: Chelle
It is sad when group homes don't have a place to report when mentally ill residents don't comply with medications. The dangerous situation goes not only to the resident but all staff included. There is a higher turnover of staff in situations like this, putting everyone even more at risk.
Each state has state mental hospitals. You have the ones for someone who has done criminal behavior/killings, etc and mentally incapable which would be secure like a prison, You have the hospital which is for mentally insane without criminal behavior, you have those for moderate instablity that need to be stablized and moved to a group home. Depending on your Department of Corrections and the Department of Public Safety and Dept of Human Services, etc how they inter mix.
I am sure the person you described wet to a critical care/non criminal behavior. What is sad is when this behavior is induced by self medication of illegal drugs. Meth will do this, as well as many others. Our prisons are full of people wiht paranoia set in motion by drug use. Gives me chils.
Comment: #20
Posted by: Joyce/MN
Sun May 29, 2011 5:20 PM
Re: Lise Brouillette

Yes Lise, but here in America the individual has their rights protected by the constitution until something has proven to have happened. The LWs brother may be a menance by mentally abusing the father, but there are no laws that prevent that here. The brother has not broken any laws and the legal system won't force him to take medicine until he has been proven a danger to himself and others legally. That is why the Arizona shooter was legally able have a gun, he had never been convicted of an offense and there was not a verifyable medical history of mental illness. But I still prefer to have our system that protects an individuals rights. I don't want a right taken away from me on just an acusation or suspicion. What would prevent someone from making a false accusation just for spite. No thanks.
Comment: #21
Posted by: Lynn
Sun May 29, 2011 5:33 PM
Re: Lynn

My dear Lynn, I'm well aware of the principle involved. I just your noble convictions are never sorely tested by someone you love being killed by a Kyle.

Comment: #22
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Sun May 29, 2011 6:04 PM
Re: Lynn

P.S.: False accusations of mental illness can easily be debunked by a few relevant tests. We're not talking the Witches of Salem here.

Comment: #23
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Sun May 29, 2011 6:06 PM
LW1
I wish I'd gotten in on this discussion earlier. I can tell you EXACTLY where this is going to end up, since this is a carbon copy of what happened with my sister about 15 years ago. She is diagnosed as "bipolar with delusions". Lise, Dolly, Mandy, JMM are basically correct, Jodie, Chris are mostly incorrect. The father must get away from the son by any means possible:
When my sister was about 30, my father moved her first with roommates, who kicked her out because of her delusions, then he paid for her to have a private apartment, where she was kicked out for harrassing the neighbors who she thought were doing evil things to her, then to her own 1 bedroom house - same story. We think she was taking some medications until the 1-bedroom house, when she appeared to have stopped completely - however, now, even when she is on medication that the state has ordered her to take, she is still delusional (although less so). So it's possible the son is taking some or all of the meds, and they no longer work on him. Anyway, at the end when she was in the 1-bedroom apartment, she started having delusions that my dad was stalking and "abusing" her, and calling 911 to report nonexistent crimes, so my father finally had to stop bailing her out of trouble and just let her go - there was nothing more he could do for her.
This next part is (probably) the cycle that the son will go through, for the rest of his life:
Soon my sister attacks a stranger (verbally) and is forced into 48 hour observation (this is in California). They then put her under state conservatorship, and put her in a hospital setting for the mentally ill where she is forced to take meds, and can't leave the grounds. Eventually, after 3 to 6 months of good behavior, she is allowed out under her own supervision during the day. She then is transferred to a group home, where her medication is still monitored, but not so forcefully. She is very smart, with multiple degrees, so she requests judicial hearings, and convinces them to let her off of conservatorship. She then refuses to stay in the group home, ends up homeless for a few days, goes back to the group home where she goes off the deep end accusing people and calling 911, and the cycle starts over immediately - she goes back to 48 hour lock up. Over 10 years, this has happend 7 or 8 times. The state can't afford to house all these people, so they use any excuse to let them out. It is just in the last year or so that they finally realized they MUST keep her - we've been telling them for years it's actually more expensive for the state to let her out. Part of the problem was them shuffling her to different departments each time, or high turnover of personnel (not sure), but each time she was conserved, no one seemed to know any of her history and thought it would be fine to let her out again! (Despite us getting wise to what was going on and telling the new conservators that they just can't let her manage her own affairs). Anyway, FINALLY, they are keeping her in the group home and forcing her to take meds, after over 10 years of that. Completely medicated, she still thinks that my father (now dead 3 years) is peering in windows at her, and that his mother, who's funeral she was at, is leaving her messages - I could go on. We pay for a cell phone for her to have, and her state worker has convinced her to stop calling 911 constantly, but she has started calling a non-emergency "crimestoppers" instead, which she calls multiple times a day. We believe the crimestoppers are on to her, and just delete messages when they see the number it's from (we hope, anyway...). Trying to find a solution to that. She calls and emails the family asking when we will be able to get her her own apartment (in between worse calls, for instance asking me to check on our niece because she "heard" her being attacked outside her window)
Anyway. The only thing that will help is having his medications monitored, by force if it comes to that. Caveat - I could be totally wrong, maybe he just needs his meds adjusted and he'll be great. But if he's refusing to take them, everyone MUST get as far away as possible, period.
Comment: #24
Posted by: Steve
Sun May 29, 2011 9:47 PM
@Steve
You and your family have been through a lot. I'm very sorry to hear that. Thanks for telling your sister's story. It's educational for someone like me who, fortunately, has never had to deal with something like that.
Comment: #25
Posted by: FAW
Sun May 29, 2011 10:25 PM
The fact that Kyle was adopted is completely irrelevant to the letter as written.

If the LW had included information about Kyle's birth family to show that bipolar disorder runs in his genetic family, that would be a factor to include. But without that info, it's just a fact about the child, like what color his hair is, and doesn't bear on the rest of the letter.
Comment: #26
Posted by: Jennifer
Tue May 31, 2011 1:54 PM
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