Join Date: Jan 2009
My Son is Sick
I wrote this the day after my experience below. I have been keeping a "journal" of sorts and have found it helps me document my feelings as well as keeping track of "Our" experiences with this illness.
My Son Is Sick
He is an adult, (19) diagnosed with Schizoaffective Disorder in August 2007, the most recent diagnosis is Paranoid Schizophrenia. Some of his delusions that I know he truly believes are so bizarre they frighten me. He believes he was a victim of religious ritual sexual abuse, he believes I wash my carpets with sperm, cook with sperm, and defecate in his bed. He thinks he is Buddha…”something really, really, good is going to happen to him when the Monks come”
My Son is sick…
He will not take his medication and is currently in the hospital for the 4th time since August.
This past Friday I get a call “Mom, I need to go to the hospital” I rarely hear him call me Mom, when he does he is usually on his medication, and then, sometimes I even get a hug. I want to cry, I tell him I am on my way.
When I get to where he is staying he get’s in the car, I ask, “what’s going on?” he replies, “it’s none of your F’ing business” I say nothing more and we continue to the hospital in silence. Upon arriving at the E.R., he was immediately put in a room due to his behavior. The admitting clerk said that he remembered my son from last time and had been scared of him.
My Son is sick…
When he got to his room, he was asked to put on a gown, which he refused to do. His nurse told him he had to and he could do it the hard way or the easy way. He put on the gown.
Having been there for about an hour, I stepped out of the E.R. to get some water. When I returned, I had to pass by the nurses station, the nurse assigned to my son was holding up a piece of paper and laughing with another nurse, as I walked by I noticed it was my son’s paperwork that he filled out to be admitted. I never saw the paper and have no idea what was so funny about it but I let it go. At this point, I was choking back tears and trying to hold myself together.
My Son is sick…
Security escorts my son outside for a smoke, and to the bathroom twice, with the last visit angering him to the point he started slamming his fist on the walls. This gets the attention of the other security guards, the E.R. staff, and anyone else within earshot.
My Son is sick…
The Doctor on call has ordered a shot to calm him down. His nurse walks into his room and comes right back out stating, “he won’t go for it” While the medical staff stood out in the hallway devising another plan I noticed a different nurse snickering outside his door. I was LIVID! At that moment, 2 social workers approached me and asked if I was his mother I told them I was and proceeded to tell them I did not appreciate the snickering from the medical staff regarding my son’s illness. I do not appreciate his nurse sharing my son’s paperwork he filled out for admittance with another co-worker AND laughing about it! This is NOT funny, he is SICK he needs help, and the people who are supposed to be helping him are laughing at him!”
My son is sick…
The plan now is to medicate him forcibly. Six men along with his nurse entered his room and told him he had to have the shot, my son was yelling expletives at that point, and the fight began.
My son is sick he needs help.
I watch through the window as my precious son, my pride, my joy, my first-born, the child his father and I so desperately wanted and prayed for 19 years ago was wrestled to the gurney and medicated against his will. I watch as his face starts to turn purple from the pressure on his neck by one of the security guards, the security guard notices as well and releases pressure a bit, his color returns. My Son was calling them Satanists, spitting and crying. After tying him down to the bed the men came out, some of them looked like they might have been hurt during the scuffle. I feel so bad my heart is breaking.
My son is sick…
I cannot even begin to comprehend how my son feels or what he is thinking, but he slowly calms down. I watch as tears stream down his cheeks, does he realize he needs help? Today, I saw evil in his eyes simultaneously with fear. The same look of fear I saw on his face as a child when he was scared. I will never forget it. What is he thinking? Is he starting to realize he needs help?
My son is sick; he needs help fighting this hideous disease!
What gives me hope?
The fact that he called me to take him to the hospital today. Maybe, just maybe my son is starting to realize he needs help.
What I am grateful for:
N.A.M.I. their Family-to-Family program was what kept me going during a very rough time. I met some wonderful people in this class and the instructors were truly Angels. I am grateful for Valley Mental Health and their services they provide.
What infuriates me?
The “system” the stigma, the ignorance society and family have of mentally ill people, the insensitivity I witnessed from the very group of people who made a pledge “… to pass my life in purity and to practice my profession faithfully. I will abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous, and will not take or knowingly administer any harmful drug. I will do all in my power to maintain and elevate the standard of my profession, and will hold in confidence all personal matters committed to my keeping and all family affairs coming to my knowledge in the practice of my calling. With loyalty will I endeavor to aid the physician, in his work, and devote myself to the welfare of those committed to my care.”
And most of all the Doctor we were referred to upon his release from the hospital the first time. He invited me in for the last 15 minutes of my son’s session looked me straight in the eyes and said, “I’m confused, I have read through his charts and see nothing that justifies him being involuntarily admitted to the hospital let alone for 2 weeks!” As I felt my son look at me (yes he was in the room), I started telling him some of the delusions he was experiencing at that time. His reply was “those are quirks, he has issues with bodily fluid” He then told my son to take his medication and keep his appointments while he was under court commitment. My interpretation of this comment? Play the game, get through it and you will be fine. (he was hospitalized a few weeks later)
I had a neighbor once ask me as she waited with me for the police to come how I stay so calm. I replied I truly believe God does not give us anything we cannot handle and that there is a lesson somewhere in this for myself, my youngest son, his father, anyone whose life has been touched by my first-born.
My prayers are with each of you who have been touched by mental illness. This last year has brought awareness to me of my strength, my compassion for others who are not as fortunate and the power of prayer.
God Bless to you all