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my cousin is schizophrenic...and death of a friend


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Taking him to the doctors and mental health professionals, so far does not work with him. He was deeply paranoid, even at his parents and relatives, and screamed at them, sometime kicked and bunched the wall. Two years ago, he wouldn't talk to anyone, not even his parents. Now, he's a bit better due to the good support group that he has. He doesn't take medication, however. Sometime, he would just sit in one place and walk around the house, doing nothing. Now, he converses more with close family. He seems happier now and a bit less paranoid. But, he is fearfull and paranoid still...fear of other people and groups wanting to harm him.

He is happy when I come over to spend time with him. After months of talking to him and gaining trust, I am thinking that the death of a high school friend and lack of social and coping skill eventually turn him into paranoia. That's my theory anyway. Once in a while he would mention of bad incidents in high school and of seeing the friend that passed away. In the past year or so, he hasn't seen the dead friend, but does talk about times when he saw the dead friend, even though the friend had passed away years ago.

He is still fearfull and have thoughts that make no sense. What more can I do? I'm thinking that he fears that that death came to high school his friend...will maybe affect him too. I believe that the fear compounding with low self esteem had spiralled him into convoluted thoughts. What can more I do?

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He is still fearfull and have thoughts that make no sense. What more can I do? I'm thinking that he fears that that death came to high school his friend...will maybe affect him too. I believe that the fear compounding with low self esteem had spiralled him into convoluted thoughts. What can more I do?

This is more of a support site for the people who have the mental illness themselves, so my advice

is likely to be less helpful than you'd get from a friends and caregivers support site. Keep that in mind.

If your friend is schizophrenic, the thing that is going to help his thinking the most is medication. You can't

make that decision for him or even try to get him to take it if he won't. That doesn't mix well even with

people who AREN'T paranoid (yet).

Just continue to hang out and talk with him about the things going on in his and your life, when you can,

and just be a friend. Everybody needs that.

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Medication is almost the only thing. I had to be forced to go into hospital and forced onto medication (I fought the nurses with every last strength left in me) - my parents/social workers/pdocs had to twist the law somewhat as I wasn't a danger to myself or others (the requirements in the UK to be put under enforced hospital stays), but I don't hold it against them at all, it was the best thing that could have happened, the only way to get me on medication and end the nightmare. So focus any efforts on the ultimate goal of getting him on medication. If you can get him to admit the illness, which could be incredibly hard for him to do, that'll be half the battle. But it may have gone on for too long for there to be much chance of that.

Be a friend if you can but it will probably be difficult. There werevery few people back in the day who I'd credit with any amount of trustworthiness. Try to talk to him plainly and simply and make sure he understands anything you say as he could be extracting twisted meanings from innocent phrases. Not sure about the seeing the dead friend thing - that sounds pretty messed up..

I'm reflecting a lot of my own experience here, but it sounds like the symptoms are similar apart from the seeing dead people thing (though I once met the ghost of Jim Morrison, or Val Kilmer anyway..).

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"my advice is likely to be less helpful than you'd get from a friends and caregivers support site."

I disagree. The information here is more direct, accurate and helpful than anything you find on a caregiver site. I have checked out many and have yet to find anything even remotely as helpful as crazyboards.

In my opinion, many caregiver sites suck and are full of stupid whiners.

If anyone knows an actual good site for family and loved ones, PLEASE PM me.

And I think you and lost gave solid, understandable, practicle advise.

(See? I told you this site is better!)

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one thing i'd say: i don't think the death of the friend CAUSED the paranoia. it TRIGGERED it. the difference is the tendency to paranoia was always there, but the death was the switch that made it turn on.

unfortunately you can't reason someone out of paranoia. all you can do & this may actually mean a lot to him, is be his friend/support him without judging. a lot of people of us MI people know when we are being patronized. your respect and friendship may really mean a lot to him.

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Thanks all for your inputs. You're right, I do try to speak plainly, simply, and not being patronized. I think it'd be better for him if his parent is less patronizing, but sadly they can't help it. Hmmm, medication got a lot of support from you all. Again thanks for the inputs.

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