When is enough?

When do you realize the hospital is a better environment for someone than at home, yours or anyone’s?  The hospital that’s like a prison really.

I just drove back from Sedona listening to a diatribe about how our father has bugged our homes and cars for 20 years, how I’m evil and a liar, how Lucifer is his “real father”, how the FBI and CIA is monitoring us, how I participated in murdering my sister, how I want to murder him with cyanide “every day”, etc. etc. etc.

It’s called Paranoid Schizophrenia and this is at it’s worst.

I meet with the team and the Psychiatrist there today at 3pm to decide what we do next.

Clearly the new medication is not kicking in.

I’m exhausted, awakened this morning at 4:30 to yelling at voices.

Chain smoking, locking himself in his bedroom, talking to voices, isolating.  This is no way for either of us to live.

And I’m trying to get out of town for a week on Saturday.

Honestly I think we are both at the end of our rope.

Maybe I just need to let go and see what happens.

Please if you are a praying type, we sure need it right now.

I don’t want to put him in the hospital but I can’t BE the hospital anymore either.  This has pushed my limits of coping at this level of crisis 24/7.

Enough, already.  Enough.

34 thoughts on “enough

  1. KCL.. If our roles were reversed, here is what I think you would say to me: There are times when love is not enough. Now is the time to put John’s welfare above your need to take care of him. Hospitals are much better equipped to provide for him when he relapses. Let him go.. let him be taken care of so he can come back to you as the John you know and love. Feel no guilt. It is what is best.

  2. Katie, I am an Intercessor with the Breakthrough Prayer ministry. I will be praying for you and Alfonse. I wish I could give you a hugs hug right now. xoxo,

  3. cathy

    I agree. It might just be time to let the professionals do their jobs. Praying hard for both of you. Tears for you.

  4. nezumi

    Hugs to you Katie and prayers for you all. I think ncsam’s post is spot on. Allowing for professionals to care for John is not a failure on your part. It’s a show of strength.

  5. Lilibet

    You’ve done all you can do, Kathy. Hospitalizing John is not giving up on him. It’s doing what is best for both of you right now. I will pray that you will have peace with that decision and that John will get the help he needs. My heart goes out to both of you. {{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{Kathy & John}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

  6. Cyndi Wells Platfoot

    You have done everything you can at this point! You have done a wonderful job keeping him safe and cared for but he’s needs more than you can do, it’s time to let the professionals take over. I’ve been praying for you both …..I hope you can feel all us out here lifting you up…..{HUGS}

  7. N Zedder

    Prayers being sent from Aussie to you and Alfonse….

    Who Will Cry for the Little Boy–Antwone Fisher

    Who will cry for the little boy?
Lost and all alone.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
Abandoned without his own?

    Who will cry for the little boy?
He cried himself to sleep.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
He never had for keeps.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
He walked the burning sand.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
The boy inside the man.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
Who knows well hurt and pain.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
He died again and again.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
A good boy he tried to be.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
Who cries inside of me

    I think we all have our little child in us who cries… Bless you Kathy you have been strong too long… Time for a break … Hugs, and be well ……

  8. Laura Jackson

    KCL, sorry to hear about this. The hospital is truly no fun, but I guess you have to ask yourself if enough time has elapsed, in order for the New med. To kick in? and do you want him to be safe while you have some much needed respite? Whenever I have a big decision like this facing me, I make a pro/con list for myself, then reread it a bunch. Just know you have so many that really care About both of you. Many days you have helped me so much by your sharing. LOVE.

  9. lovelaw

    I think you know better than anyone when “enough is enough” for YOU. I think you are asking for permission to feel you’ve reached that point. Please, you don’t need permission!! I absolutely understand why you want “permission”, why you crave it. Don’t give in to your feelings of guilt, only to put yourself in danger, emotionally and physically. And, how is that good for John?? Simple answer is: It’s NOT. When a careGIVER cannot GIVE without risking their own well-being it is then time for them to TAKE care. Not only for you, but for John too. God knows you are not a selfish person, and that your feelings do not come from a selfish place. Maybe it sounds like I’m giving you “permission”, but I have no right to do that. YOU have that right! GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION!! Please. If someone else doesn’t approve of your choice/s, then may they walk a mile in your shoes.
    Thoughts and prayers.

  10. pilcherje

    Enough sometimes comes in the form of when someone is potentially dangerous to themselves and possibly to others. And in paranoid schizophrenia, it can be both, when it’s least expected. Even in spite of prior behavior(s) that didn’t necessarily warrant that kind of concern. The catatonic state you mentioned before, finding John on the balcony, had to be alarming.

    You’re right, the new medication isn’t kicking in and it seems John would benefit from an observable standpoint until he’s sufficiently stabilized and not experiencing frequent repeated episodes. I understand how difficult it is knowing that someone you love would essentially be in an institutionalized type setting. I know too the question could be for how long…or should this be permanent.

    When my sister’s episodes of paranoia and catatonic states began, which I think were primarily caused by her medications, I had to let go. Time would have to be the determining factor either way. She exceeded her hospitalization DR’s by 15 days. Ultimately she spent 35 days in a controlled environment. But when she came back under my care, she was stable. She needed that as much as I did so that we both could function when the time was right.

    That time for her was essential and later on, I came to realize it was just as essential for me as I’d only had one day of respite prior to her admittance. The full knowledge of how important this was for my sake and for the next onslaught of care that I would then have to give to my mother was a lesson that was just as important to my mother’s well being. She didn’t need to see me crying and worn to the bone from lack of sleep. No doubt physical and mental health are linked as eyes are essential for seeing where we’re at and where we need to go!

    You can count on my prayers Dear Kathy, for both of you and lots of them. I’ll begin with a deserving prayer for you…where you’re heart is given the care that it needs because you give so much to others first…and that your body feels peace with your heart and soul. There’s no question about your love for all that is good…and for John, peace of mind, a mind at rest. And with peace of mind comes understanding. XXOO

  11. Denny

    I too have a sibling with PS. My sister refuses to take her meds short of court ordered shots to prevent self harm. We live I’m AZ and the resources are in short supply with the laws as they are unless there is threat of self harm or harm to others. Reading your post shows such a strength that rarely exist in humans. You must take care of you to preserve that strength, and only you can decide when it’s time to get relief for yourself. If hospitalization is an option, I believe it’s less of a prison then the prison that entangles the mind of a PS with non working meds. I pray that God will guide you thru this difficult decision and that a treatment will be found that works for John long term so that you both will be free from this horrible disease and all it’s roller coaster days. You are an inspiration to follow and I thank you for your blog.

  12. KCL, ncsam said it well, I believe. Sometimes the best thing we can do is what we don’t want to do. Your health is just as important as John’s. I worry this is going to break you if you don’t accept the help that is available to both of you.

    Your time away is precious, sweet lady — don’t deny yourself the break.

    Unless you believe in your heart that he will not be well taken care of, at least consider the consequences of both sides (if he goes, if he stays).

    Praying that you find an answer and the meeting this afternoon brings you some comfort. Whatever you decide is best, we are here to support you!

  13. jpaulaj

    Yes Kathy there are human limits and I think you know that you have reached your limit. You are Alfonse’s Sister but not his ‘Savior’. All you can do is your best; even if the best is accepting that John needs something more than you are able to provide. Please don’t think I am preaching because I have no right to preach to anyone. Never forget that you are a fragile girl like all the rest of us. Together we can all help carry each other’s challenges. I will continue to pray prayers of healing for John. For some reason I’m thinking of a butterfly and the need for one to set them free to allow them to flourish.

    Much Love and many Hugs,
    God Bless . . .

  14. Ev (aka Optics at Websleuths)

    Katie, I just read your post and followed along through Websleuths your updates on your brother. I’m not a psychiatrist or psychologist, I rely on my common sense and what research I do. My nephew had schitzophrenia, and no doubt you will know there are different types. His was in the spiritual category rather than the more aggressive or violent type. I’ve also had a close friend who’s son was paranoid schitzophrenic and his delusions with violent at times, then other times he was the best friend of Donald Trump (in his mind). Both are now deceased. Two great handsome men in their 20s, gone.
    In both cases, it was extremely difficult for their parents. They didn’t want either institutionalized – yet they knew inside their children were not thinking in the norm. There are periods or moments where they are ‘okay’, but it will never stay, they revert.
    The one thing I feel, is deep, very deep somewhere in their minds – they know their family be it mom/dad or brothers/sisters LOVE them very very much. When a person has gone to the extreme of killing their family members or others, because of delusions, they still love that person they are killing. Their delusions though have the control.
    Everything I’ve read when your brother has been okay – is pure love from he to you. You have done everything you possible can. To let the professionals take over and keep him in a care facility – now to me seems your only option. They can protect him from himself, they can protect him from having a delusion in the public and acting on it, to the loss of his life or someone else’s. You have to shift your mind to committing him because you LOVE him. He would likely do the same if the shoes were switched. What this will help for you and his dad, etc – is buy that piece of mind: You know he is being watched, your mind is not stressed – and those times when he comes back as ‘normal’ in the care facility, are joys,,,,,,and not underwritten with “how long will he be like this”, “oh, he’s normal now, so he’ll be okay”. One of my friends once said “we can’t be martyrs – we have to recognize within ourselves our limitations and then make what is the only decision”. You can’t be everything to everyone. If I was in your position, I would begin the arrangements for his permanent care, which will buy you those precious moments when you visit him in a safe environment to just love him. It does not matter that you worked in a facility like one he is in – the difference is – he is your brother and when it’s an immediate family member – the decisions aren’t as objective. Here is a poem which has always resonated with me – that we can’t be all things to all people:
    Everybody Knows:
    You can’t be all things to all people.
    You can’t do all things at once.
    You can’t do all things equally well.
    You can’t do all things better than everyone else.
    Your humanity is showing just like everyone else’s.

    You have to find out who you are, and be that.
    You have to decide what comes first, and do that.
    You have to discover your strengths, and use them.
    You have to learn not to compete with others,
    Because no one else is in the contest of *being you*.

    You will have learned to accept your own uniqueness.
    You will have learned to set priorities and make decisions.
    You will have learned to live with your limitations.
    You will have learned to give yourself the respect that is due.
    And you’ll be a most vital mortal.

    Dare To Believe:
    That you are a wonderful, unique person.
    That you are a once-in-all-history event.
    That it’s more than a right, it’s your duty, to be who you are.
    That life is not a problem to solve, but a gift to cherish.
    And you’ll be able to stay one up on what used to get you down.
    ~ Author Unknown ~

  15. Barbara

    Kathy, You have done so much for John, now might be the time to step back and do for yourself to keep yourself healthy and sane. Sending Loving light to you both. Barb

  16. Patty Raddock

    You’ve had my admiration and my prayers since you began sharing your story. Kicking both up a notch today.

  17. Fernanda

    Many, many positive thoughts…. I am praying for both of you. Sometimes letting go does relieve some of the pressure but I know it is hard to do! Be kind to yourself and your brother . Many hugs to you….

  18. BMoody

    Let dear John go to the hospital where they can get his medications regulated – a constant and always changing struggle with schizophrenia. Please go to your much needed retreat as planned!

  19. MsDeb

    Kathy, please do not feel guilty about hospitalizing John/Alfonse right now…that is the best place for him at the moment. Oh, how I wish someone had been able to do this for my mother…it would have saved all in our family from some very scary times. There are good times & bad times with paranoid schizophrenia and I know of what I speak. The people who are trained to deal with your brother on a more detached level will do their best to see him through this crisis;- and at the same time, help you to avoid suffering trauma that can’t possibly be of any benefit to either you or your brother. You are in our hearts & prayers…have faith, and leave guilt (undeserved, I might add) for others who don’t have the level of commitment you provide!

  20. Kiminnm

    Praying for the best wisdom to move forward in the action that needs to occur for both your peace of minds! Big big hugs!!

  21. Lorra Boyd

    So sorry to hear of your worsening circumstances. If e stayed at home and something happened you would never forgive yourself.
    This is also affecting your health. No one can
    tell you what to do. But sometimes we have
    To do what we don’t want to. I am praying
    for both of you. I’m sure many others are too.
    Do not feel guilty if you do commit him

  22. Thanks everyone. Sitting here in the hospital waiting room- were guaranteed a bed but it’s a 2-4 hour wait. Cancelled my day again to deal with another crisis.
    I’m relieved they are taking him and he will be safe while I leave town next week.
    If this wait goes over 4 hrs though they may as well get me a bed too.
    I’m shaking I’m so exhausted and traumatized from the last week and weekend. My dad out of the country dealing with this alone.
    Someone tried sending me flowers today but wasn’t home to accept them- gave them my work address as they only deliver during work hours.
    Just can hardly wait to get the hell away from all this on Saturday. But now need to find cat sitters for both of us. It just goes on and on and on…to get any rest for myself takes so much work to get there.
    I think I need a whole month off and might just take it.

    • I’d be thinking quite seriously about taking that entire month off if it can be arranged (I know you have a work schedule). You may find you want to keep that glow from after the spa week going as long as you can, and at least a few more days or weeks would make it easier to find some relaxing moments.

      I wouldn’t want to trade for your weather, but I would defintely be happy to cat-sit if we were closer. I hope it isn’t too difficult to manage.

      Hang on for five more days, sweet one. Then put all the rest of the world out of your mind and relax to the max. Really glad you were able to post an update. We are all holding your hand through this and care so very much. You are not completely alone….our hearts are entangled with yours.

  23. living with a mental illness is very difficult at best. However, please know by accepting that it is because you do love him, that surrendering yourself from the feelings of gulit and realizing that allowing John to be where his medication can be changed and side effects can be monitored and hopefully will be able to return to society functioning and balanced. Your love and support will not change for hom xo

  24. Peepers McPeep

    Sitting here in the backyard, thinking of you both, as the birds flutter to the fountain.
    They are exhausted by the heat, but refreshed by the coolness of the waters.
    At this very moment, a humming bird is feeding on honeysuckle.
    Tireless she feeds herself at a frenetic pace. But occasionally she stops, just for a moment, resting before her journey continues.
    Our lives mirror the backyard friends. gathering together for companionship and comfort.
    Keeping ourselves fed and refreshed, tirelessly in search of our own soothing waters,
    the sounds of friends and loved ones raining their love into our hearts.
    Rejuvinate, Dear Friend, and know your friends gather here, waiting to hear your heart sing.

  25. Thanks guys. I finally got home and got my first meal of the day after my wimpy smoothie I threw together this morning in a rush. Took 3.5 hours to get him admitted. Now I’m on cat sitter quest. Ya know those people who say “if there’s anything you need, let me know”? It sure would be nice if one of them stepped up and met this need which I didn’t have until now. Even a referral but it sure would be nice if a friend, a person like me who offers this kind of thing, would just say “let me handle this for you”. I rarely ever get that which is part of the reason I can’t stand that phrase “if there’s anything you need” because when you get the guts to ask, well, it’s a rare thing I’ve ever had someone step up. People are busy.
    I guess it all comes back to me in that I haven’t fostered those kinds of relationships. I’ve fostered the kind where they want to invite me to the party…but in the desperate times, I’m pretty much alone.
    I honestly have no idea how to change that. How do you let help in, when it’s never offered? This is what happens when you’re single and live in a big city I think. 😦

    • Chris Larson

      How about lining up several litter boxes and buying those automatic feeders? Just to hold you over this on this trip. Good luck with finding Kitty sitters.

  26. Chris Larson

    Cry, go outside and scream at the top of your lungs,and then hit the reset button.
    Your brother has been blessed with a sister that loves him with all her heart.
    Wishing your entire family PEACE.
    (Don’t forget to pack a little baggie of rice to take on your trip)

  27. Meme Jones

    Kathy, I am praying for you and John. I hope that you have a relaxing vacation. You deserve it! I am sending hugs and love from MS.

  28. Tracy

    Quote, “When do you realize the hospital is a better environment for someone than at home, yours or anyone’s? The hospital that’s like a prison really.”

    You answered it yourself, “I don’t want to put him in the hospital but I can’t BE the hospital anymore either”. He needs the hospital right now, even if it is like a prison. As you know, when somone is suffering through a full blown psychotic episode they need to be hospitalized round the clock. They need intensive treatment and constant monitoring. Prison like? Yes, but it’s just while he’s acutely psychotic, not for the for long term.

    Take this opportunity to take care of you and be confident that his meds will kick in and he’ll be Alfonse, your loving brother again. You of all people know how important it is for the caretaker to remain healthy. Remember the basic CPR mantra, “always ensure no danger to yourself before you take any action”. Not admitting him to hospital for necessary and appropriate intervention would harm both you and your brother. Rest easy, in order to get better he needs to be there, now, not forever.

    Take care of yourself, enjoy your time at the spa. You deserve it!


  29. Karen (aka LAMARQ)

    My former step-son was diagnosed with Paranoid Schizophrenia a few years back after hearing voices and almost fatally stabbing his mother and older brother. He is serving a 7 year sentence and the family has embraced him and his recovery. His mom looks forward to the day he’s back home with her, but I can’t help but wonder what life will be like for them.

    I believe true love for your brother is to allow the professionals to help get you through the hard times. I don’t think you love him any less if you allow others to care for him. Loving him means loving you as well.

    Best wishes to you and your family!

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