Unstable Friend Needs Help

  • TheIStrat

    Posts: 777

    Dec 19, 2010 5:27 PM GMT
    I have to drive to the family of my friend and tell them he is a danger to himself and others today. He needs so much help. Listening to him on the phone, it is clear he has no idea what reality is anymore. I miss my friend from high school who used to get into all sorts of trouble with me.

    This is going to be the hardest thing I've ever done. He needs to be hospitalized.

    Any advice would be appreciated.
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    Dec 19, 2010 5:55 PM GMT
    Had the same experience with my younger son a year and a half ago, stemming from drug abuse and bi polar disorder. It is a fucking hard call, i found out the mental health dept was useless and trying to having him committed to a facility was almost impossible.

    Love him, be near him, support without enabling, and lots of fucking patience.. Work with his mom and dad and be prepared for a long, long, journey. I wish I could be more postive......IM me if you want to talk....Keithicon_cool.gif
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    Dec 19, 2010 6:33 PM GMT
    Keith pretty much said it all (from a Canadian perspective.) Our mental health system in Alberta more or less fell apart a decade back with the closing of a few hospitals and a new policy of making every attempt not to institutionalize anybody.

    I had one guy who was on a court ordered supervised medication schedule. Suffice to say that you have to do something pretty bad to have the stipulation that he did. All he can talk about is how he will be better once the doctors stop forcing him to take medication... he sees the side effects, the drain on his energy levels and perceives that they are hurting him instead of allowing him to function in general society.

    It is sad watching somebody fall further into their disease and not knowing what form help will come in. I suppose that my advice (being as it was asked) would be to expect your friend to harbour resentment towards you. I wish I could be more positive, but from past experience, there is a good chance that even if he is treated (say medicated) successfully, he will not feel that he needs it. Many (most?) people will get better, stop taking their meds (they will feel they are unnecessary) and slip back. Most of these people are upset with those whom they perceive to be forcing them to be medicated.

    Likely his family already knows but are in denial as to how bad the problem is. I would not worry too much about the "confrontation" with them- that could easily be a very good experience- and they should, with any luck, realize how fortunate their son is to have a friend who cares this much. Like Keith said, be prepared for a long, long haul when it comes to a mental health issue. Best of luck.



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    Dec 19, 2010 8:03 PM GMT
    You are a great friend by doing this.
    I wish I could be more help to you on this but as the other posters have said there really isn't a lot of help out there: there is, but it is all/mostly voluntary and if he say's he is fine and doesn't need any help then that's it. The best you can hope for is a 72hr pshyc hold and that is only if he attempts suicide.
    Getting as many people involved is the right thing to do now so you're doing the right thing.
    **Hugs** to you.
  • TheIStrat

    Posts: 777

    Dec 19, 2010 8:03 PM GMT
    Thanks. I went to their house. They were not there. They did not answer their phone. We got some really disturbing phone calls this week, and my family members who are social workers said I need to file a police report because it is urgent. So that's what I'm about to do.
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Dec 19, 2010 8:07 PM GMT
    TheIStrat saidI have to drive to the family of my friend and tell them he is a danger to himself and others today. He needs so much help. Listening to him on the phone, it is clear he has no idea what reality is anymore. I miss my friend from high school who used to get into all sorts of trouble with me.

    This is going to be the hardest thing I've ever done. He needs to be hospitalized.

    Any advice would be appreciated.





    You're already doing the right thing, going to his family.
    That may be all you can do.

    It would be a good idea to provide him with hot line phone numbers of places that are there to help people who are in your friend's situation, for instance, suicide hot line, drug and alcohol abuse hot line (I don't know what the problem is with your friend). And, encourage him to call. Asking for help is the first positive step (after accepting that there IS a problem.

    Good luck. I'm sorry that you're going through this rough time. He's lucky to have such a good friend.
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    Dec 19, 2010 8:28 PM GMT
    Webster666 said

    It would be a good idea to provide him with hot line phone numbers of places that are there to help people who are in your friend's situation, for instance, suicide hot line, drug and alcohol abuse hot line (I don't know what the problem is with your friend). And, encourage him to call. Asking for help is the first positive step (after accepting that there IS a problem.


    sorry to be the downer, Webster, but they don't, they won't , they can't....they don't think anything is wrong with them...it is the worst, most helpless feeling i have ever had in my life. When I was a policeman, we could commit on mental health warrants, but they went out the window with political correctness.........................Keithicon_cool.gif