19 Sep 2020
Please help me! My son is becoming unwell.

My son has a diagnosis of Paranoid Schizophrenia and was diagnosed at the age of 22 after abusing cannabis in his teenage years. After experiencing a psychotic break which led to him being detained on section 2; section 3 and experiencing a 6-month inpatient stay. He was discharged to the Home Treatment Team who said they would visit us twice a day at home to manage my sons' medication and assess his mental state.

Initially, it went very well and then by day 5, they were leaving him with medication. They always visited him in the lounge and when he left he retired to his room with his medication and promised me he was taking the medication. By the end of the second week, he became very irritable, verbally abusive towards me and challenging. I was frightened. I did not believe he was taking his medication. By this time the Home treatment Team were visiting every other day. When I expressed my concerns they said they had not noticed anything and my son had told them he was taking the medication. They were only here for 8 minutes at the most; of course, my son would say that.

One day my son was responding loudly to voices and kept on saying the neighbours were conspiring to kill us and that we had to run away. I was really frightened and called the Home Treatment Team and demanded to speak to a manager as I felt my son needed to be re-admitted. The manager came to see me and my son and spent 45 minutes. This was long enough to assess my son and see he was unwell. Within 2 hours he was re-admitted. But why did I have to experience this? My son was in the hospital for 6 months and because the professionals wouldn't listen to me he had to be re-admitted.

The story above is a real-life situation that draws more attention to the issues with persons with mental health concerns and their families. If you are dealing with such issues, we would like to hear and proffer solutions. If you are also a practitioner and want to proffer advise, please do so in the comments section below. It is our desire to reduce to the barest minimum the amount of revolving door situations.