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I have some major issues in my life right now, involving my mother. I am seeking advice from anyone who can help. Thank you in advance.
It goes back when my mom was 28 years old. She was hospitalized for abnormal behavior. She told me that, during that time, the street lights would tell her to go in certain directions. She did this until her shoes were worn out. She doesn't have much memory of these happenings. She was diagnosed with Schizophrenia/Psychosis. She had no prior episodes. She has been a drug user her entire life, mostly marijuana and alcohol. To this day, she still thinks that someone had drugged her that night.
She has had one other episode a few years later. She was reading about Hitler and my dad found her in a closet with a knife. She thought someone was going to out to get her and trying to kill her.
My mother is now 39 years old. She's been drinking since she was 13. She's been in and out of treatment centers and halfway houses. She has been seeing the same psychiatrist since she was diagnosed with schizophrenia and psychosis. They meet every 6 months. She would come there drinking, probably even high. He will meet with her for about 15 minutes to discuss how things are going and such. She wants to be completely off her meds, because she doesn't think she needs them. In the past, they have lowered her single dose of Haldo to 50 mg. But now since being clean, they have highered it to 75 mg. When I ask her about her "disease," she knows nothing. She is having a really tough time. And to top it off, the couselor at the halfway house said that my mom's psychiatrist has mentioned making her a ward of the state. I do not see how this is possible if she hasn't had any episodes in years and is very capable of taking care of herself, as long as family is there to keep her sober and healthy.
So, my questions are:
1.) How many episodes do you have to have to be diagnosed with these disease(s)?
2.) Can a person request to have another clinical assessment? Would you advice my mother to provide consent for people to view her medical history?
3.) Can a psychiatrist refer my mom to be a Ward of the State?
4.) What actions can we, as a family, take??
5.) How is schizophrenia and psychosis linked?
6.) Should she look into getting a different psychiatrist?
I am just so unfamiliar with these two disorders. I have done some research on the computer, however, the terminology just gets way too confusing. Any feedback and/or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!