Seem to be breaking from reality

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Stick a Fork in Me, Dec 31, 2009.

  1. The spawn has decided that reality is for losers and has moved into full-fledged fantasy life. It got so strange that even her friend's were talking to me (the few that are left) to tell me what they were seeing and how much danger they thought she was in.

    She's happy as a lark in fantasy-land - packing up her room to move to new zealand with people who don't exist. No need to finish school because her friend is very wealthy and is a master chef and a master DJ and a lauded mixologist, etc. and will support her forever.

    We went and saw the psychiatrist today (she won't go). We're being geared up for the idea that it's possible she may never be fully functional... having this type of "break" before she's had a chance to become self-sufficient and functional makes it harder for her to ever get there. The fact that she's already so immature for her age doesn't help. And the fact that she's legally an adult means there's little we can do for her right now.

    We've been playing along with the fantasy. He suggested to not confront, but not continue playing fully along. I suggested to her that I'm sure it was disappointing that things weren't working out as she hoped (she was supposed to go on this fabulous move before christmas... the friends were buying the ticket and sending money to expedite her passport. She even went and got all the forms filled out, etc.) but she insists that it's not a problem, it's just delayed while they're finding a house in new zealand.

    Did I mention none of it was real?

    She's still not a danger to herself or to us so there's not a blessed thing we can do but sit by and watch the horror of it all.
  2. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I'm so sorry. I know we see people on the street all the time who are in your daughter's situation. I know that they are part of a family and that it breaks hearts. I hope she will be safe.
  3. katya02

    katya02 Solace

    I'm so sorry you're having to go through this. The absolute worst thing I experienced during my kids' childhoods, worse than difficult child being violent, was watching easy child 1 go through psychotic episodes - delusions, hallucinations - just watching my son lose his mind and depart into that 'parallel country' of psychosis. I wrote an essay at the time called 'A Parallel Country' to try to cope with the pain.

    If you can keep an eye on your difficult child so as to try to be aware of when she reaches the point of being at risk of imminent harm, you can get her evaluated on a Form. The police can pick her up and take her to an ER where she can be evaluated and held for further evaluation for at least 72 hours, hopefully more.

    In the meantime, my thoughts and prayers are with you and with her, and I hope she comes to medical attention.

    Best wishes, Katya
  4. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I'm so sorry you're dealing with this.
  5. Mattsmom277

    Mattsmom277 Active Member

    My heart breaks reading this. I have no experience with things like this with my difficult child. But I have plenty of experience with my mother. I don't think any other thing a person can go through is harder to watch than psychosis. My thoughts are with your daughter and your entire family. It sounds like the doctor wants to prepare you all for the worst, however I do hope you that you don't all give up hope. One never knows. I hope she is safe for tonight and one day at a time. (((hugs)))
  6. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Wow.....that is intense.........and I am so sorry.

    What medications is she taking? It seems she is having a psychotic break, which would mean hopefully she is on anti-psychotics? Or is she not medication compliant?

    I have a 19 yo that I got extended custody of so that he would remain under my jurisdiction while he was in his group home. With extended custody it allows us to "commit" them to a phosph if needed - and it also means that if they get picked up by the police, the police are mandated to take them to a phosph rather than jail. It is a very simple process actually, just contact a family lawyer, and ask him about how to go about filing an emergency extension of custody. I think the cost was nominal.

    I wish there was more I could do to help. Just know you are not alone.
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    First off I don't want you to take this the wrong way because I'm not exactly sure why the psychiatrist said to play along with her delusions........

    But I have never, ever heard a psychiatrist tell family ect to play into go along with a patients delusions/fantasy whatever you want to call it. Ever. Seriously. And you have to understand that I come from a family with quite a bit of serious mental illness.

    That said. All the medical training I've had, which is fairly considerable, also firmly states to never play into a patients delusions. Not only do you risk the patient drifting even further from reality, you're also playing a dangerous game because you've no way of knowing what twists and turns the patients delusions will take. You are in essence affirming that their fantasy world is real. NOT a good idea. Because this pushes the patient even further away from reality which can cause them to become even more unstable and potentially violent to anyone who confronts them that their delusions are not in fact real. This could be you, or an acquaintance, or a stranger they encounter.

    I'm not criticizing you. I'm having an issue with a mental health professional giving you this advise. And personally, from my own life-long experience...which doesn't just involve my difficult children...I'd be finding a different psychiatrist. Because sooner or later your difficult child's fantasy world is going to place her into danger, or when someone else confronts her with the truth it may place them into danger.

    I'm just having a really hard time wrapping my brain around a psychiatrist telling you that. My mother is paranoid schizophrenic......we don't dare tell her that her delusions are real. I'm just shaking my head.

    I realize because she is an adult you are limited in what you can do. And I understand that you may have to accept that she will never be able to achieve mental stability. And believe me I totally get that it is not fun to confront someone that what they believe to be real is in fact not......

    I dunno. But I see difficult child being at greater risk to be a danger to both herself and to others if you play into her fantasy/delusions. Even if she is not normally prone to violence ect.

    Not judging you. Am more than a bit POed at your psychiatrist, though. :mad: I know what it's like to have family members who break from reality. It's very very hard to deal with. Have you investigated under what circumstances you (or medical personnel) could intervene? I know that it's hard to do with an adult, but it is possible.

    Many ((hugs)) your way and prayers for you and your difficult child.
  8. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    Lisa, I think you misunderstood.

    Stick, I'm so sorry. This must be terrifying.

  9. Exactly, suz. He said to STOP playing along. But he advised against a "harsh" confrontation. He said we should start by validating any fears she might be having and then gently bringing up the fact that we're "concerned with her plans" and go from there.

    Because my preference was to smack her in the head and say "OMG THIS ISN'T REAL!!!" LOL (just kidding but boy would it be fun).
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Oh, whew! Thank Goodness! Sorry Sticks, chalk that up to being sick and obviously not having read it right. So relieved!! You've no idea!. :) *blushes a deep crimson* I am honestly relieved that psychiatrist did not say that!! Cuz as you could see I just couldn't imagine...

    And no, it's not any better to do a harsh confrontation. But yes, it is awfully tempting especially in the heat of the moment to do just that. lol

    I've had to help guide my Mom back to reality more times than I could possibly count. Actually we had a bout a few weeks back..... I think it worked. But you can never be absolutely positive. lol

  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Stick...Im so sorry.

    Last year...well the end of 2008, I had my own experience with delusions and hallucinations. I have a very deep empathy for people who live with this on an ongoing period of time. Mine only lasted a few months but it was very hard.

    Lisa, my doctors also told my family to just go along with me and not try to tell me what I was thinking or saying wasnt true.

    When I was convinced I was pregnant, everyone just went along with it...even the nurses. When I thought I could walk...well, then they unstrapped my feet and tried to help me up but when I simply couldnt stand, they told me, maybe tomorrow it will be better. I thought I was walking from one room to another and going home at night. I thought all kinds of things. LOL. I even thought I could hear a doorbell and told the nurse to go answer it and she told me she would. No one ever told me I was delusional. I thought I had gone to vote! I was still in a coma at that They just left the TV on for me. I even thought Jamie went to arrest the President for having too much Dr Pepper in his car...lmao!
  12. XerSib

    XerSib New Member

    Well if it's any consolation at least her "plan" does not involve drug smuggling to the People's Republic of China due to being bamboozeled by people in organized crime (like what happened to that poor BiPolar (BP) guy from the UK - my deepest sympathies go out to his family and curses to the PRC!). Best of luck to you and difficult child.
  13. Momslittleangels

    Momslittleangels New Member

    I got this huge flash of Forrest Gump meeting up with the President, when I read this. :rofl:

    Sticks - - I sure hope she improves soon.
  14. We're doing small confrontations now.

    I've had things thrown at my head and death wishes hurled at me and all manner of horrible things said. I stayed so calm I didn't know who I was.

    And I know none of it should mean anything really.

    But really.

    I just don't want to play any more.

    stop the bus, please. I want to get off.

    Stick a fork in me. I'm done.
  15. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    This is why I live 2 states from my Mom. I can choose to pick up the phone and deal with it......or decide I've had enough for a while and walk away from the phone. Caller ID is wonderful.
  16. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member


    Now I know where I got that delusion from...thank you thank you thank you!!!

    Forrest Gump is Tonys favorite movie of all time and I am willing to bet it was on at some point while I was in the coma. He probably watched it while sitting there with me and that scene crept into my brain and rattled around until it formed my own version...lmao.
  17. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    I am so sorry that things are getting worse.
    I know how it feels to stay calm in the midst of insanity, only for the reality to hit you upside the head days or weeks later.
    You are not alone in wanting to get off the bus. Sigh.
    Is she on AP medications?
    Many hugs and much strength are being sent your way.
  18. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Stick, I'm so very sorry you're having to go through this. The patience required to gently challenge and guide our delusional loved ones back to something resembling reality takes so much strength and patience, especially when what you really want to do is blow your stack and yell them back to the real world.

    Hang in there, you're definitely not alone. Along with my difficult child's very loose handle on reality, I have the experience of growing up with a schizophrenic mother who actually did wear the tinfoil hat. Sometimes I think the movies about psychosis are based on her...

    Sending many gentle hugs. Hey, maybe before we all get off the bus, we can drive it to a nice peaceful tropical island?