I don’t understand this illness. Son can get along just fine for 5-6 weeks and then he gets manic, stops sleeping/eating. He starts losing things. Completely losing things, never to be found again. Like half a pair of sneakers. How do you lose just one shoe between night and morning? I swear he must throw things away. After a few days we generally start to wonder if he is using or drinking. We talk to him or ask him about it, and he of course gets defensive. “Why don’t you trust me?” Then he starts getting really agitated, can’t sit still. He’ll stay in his room, barely speaking to anyone, then suddenly barge into the room, say something odd and mumbled and disappear again.
He has started seeing things and hearing voices. He kept sweeping his room, complaining that it is impossible for the dust and dirt to reappear when he just swept. He told me it was the ghosts doing it. They don’t like him. He had chunks of time where he spoke of things that have not happened. Then he would have a few minutes where he seemed completely ok.
This time I called the PET, Psychiatric Emergency Team. While it was nice not to have to involve the police, especially since for the first time he was remaining somewhat talkative and aware. He was calmer than most time he gets like this, so I thought about cancelling PET, but I knew he could go downhill pretty quickly. My hopes of help were dashed when this team tells me they can do nothing. He is calm and answering questions with them. Even if he answered a question with something completely odd. They said that Son needs to meet the requirements of a 5150: Is he a danger to himself or anyone else. That’s it. They don’t think talking to things that aren’t there, and discussing how ghosts are messing up his room as warranting a psych hold. Granted his odd behavior is not against the law, but this one defining question as to a psych hold, “Is he a danger to himself or anyone else?” hardly seems enough.
We had been nearly three days with almost no sleep because Son had been up cooking breakfast at 1 AM, or any number of daytime activities in the middle of the night. He loses all sense of time when he gets like this. You cannot reason with him. He doesn’t hear you, sometimes I’m not sure he even sees me.
In all I have read I have only seen mention that someone with BPD may hallucinate a couple of times. But it’s just that: one line or two saying some people may experience hallucinations. I need to expand my search parameters. At last! I found a couple of good places for more info. All I needed to do was add “hallucination” or “psychosis” and boom, I got info. Helpful? Somewhat.
In the end, Son voluntarily admitted himself to the hospital because of the hallucinations. He called this afternoon angry because they wouldn’t let him out. Possibly the psych team admitted him unwilling, or they don’t feel it’s safe to release him. Either way he is terribly angry. Tomorrow he will be contrite and beg us to pick him up.
It’s gotten to the point we don’t want him in the house, he’s so disruptive and unpleasant so much of the time. But if it’s just the BPD we have to hang in there, but if he is doing this to himself I don’t know that we can. If we could just get a doctor to confirm that nothing untoward showed up in his blood work. Last time we went through this I managed to see his lab results and Xanax was detected. He doesn’t have a script for that and had a terrible habit at one time.
He can’t get into rehab unless he is actively using. He can’t get into a sober living home unless he’s clean. He is unable to hold down a job for a litany of reasons, so he lives here. How do I help him? How do I get through to him? Will he let me talk with his doctors? Only one way to know. I’ll ask him when he comes home if he would let me talk to them.