Friday, September 25, 2020

Comments by Oliver Twist

Showing 1 of 1 comments.

  • There is a flip side to being non-compliant.

    Yes, I understand that the side effects of the medication are unpleasant (and yes, I have tried antipsychotics myself, as they are used off-label for anxiety).

    My extended family has been dealing with a psychotic sister for 25 years. Her most recent psychotic event has wreaked havoc. My well sister made safety visit after safety visit to ensure that she was OK, each requiring a day’s drive. She was acting so weird and nasty that she alienated her sister, as well as her friends.

    At its peak, the police were called, after she caused significant property damage that could have killed her and others. Since then, my sister and I have worked full-time taking care of her and cleaning up the mess she left behind when she decided that her previous diagnosis was wrong and stopped all medication. We have dealt with the police and the victims of the property damage she caused, stopped her from getting a police record, and from going to jail.

    We’ve dealt with insurance companies to help pay for the property damage. We’ve dealt with hospital personnel, social workers, attorneys, NAMI, psychiatrists and every other resource imaginable.

    Our aging parents had to get involved, and they are having their own health and cognitive problems.

    I’m struggling financially after three months with no income. Both my well sister, me and her husband have injured ourselves because we’ve gotten out of shape from the time commitment. And we’ve neglected our own families.

    At the same time, our ill sister has expected us to care for her and clean up her actions, allow her to live in our homes and provide for her needs, while at the same time holding back information (such as insurance company information, credit card information so we could pay off her bills, access to healthcare providers so we could tell her providers about her behavior) that we needed to clean up her mess.

    You do have the legal right to not be medicated.

    If you can manage without medication, good for you. That means that you have to be fully capable of self-care.

    Most with serious mental illnesses aren’t capable of self-care without medication.

    If your becoming non-compliant means that a team of people have to halt their lives to manage you and the disaster you left behind because you decide to become non-compliant, you’re really acting in a selfish way.

    Expect whatever consequences come your way if you do this – you could die or wind up in jail (in the midst of this, I saw an article on someone sentenced to life in prison for a murder committed after he went off his medication; our legal system generally has little tolerance for the mentally ill when they commit a crime, unfortunately).