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Something’s not right

Senior Contributor

Staying Safe

Hi just wondering how to negotiate staying safe with an unwell son.
I believe he may be manic he has created a debt, irritable and aggressive. Friends have commented to him that he is hyper and he commented himself on how he feels he is talking a lot. He likes the fact the meds have got him going but with it is snapping, anger and aggression.
We attended a community health review following his week in hospital in which he presented well and despite my concerns were told to just go see psychiatrist who is currently away, for follow up.
I am scared for my safety. I have had a drink sprayed around my car and me whilst driving. He has deliberately upended food and furniture on the floor, broken items and seems to think his behavior is warranted.
When he us calm he agrees not to be this way but can't do it obviously when out of control.

164 REPLIES 164

Re: Staying Safe

You might need to call up CATT - this is the public health mental health team. Let them know your observations (including your last post of spending). Keep it factual as you have here.

Be aware your son may not be overly happy about your intervention if it results in involuntary admission and may or may not thank you later. Be insistent that he needs help now, not when his private pdoc eventually gets back from leave.

It is most important to mention too how the meds "have got him going" my husband had hypomania as a result of meds given to him, another lot saw him increasingly agitated.


Re: Staying Safe

Hi Darcy

Is the catt team the same as comhet?

My son spent 5 days in hospital and was released on 2 days extended leave. The night before returning to be reviewed he snapped and directed his anger at me. I could not go to the review because of work so my husband went and the psychiatrist did not think this was anything to do with his mh but rather an issue between him and me. As far as they were concerned he no longer wanted to harm himself so he was discharged.

We have voiced the overspending to the comhet team who believe it is unrelated. This has now been going on for a month and the snapping and directing his anger, mostly to me but also his dad is occurring regularly even though in 27 years it only ever happened at most twice before.

He had a post hospital review last Friday and presented himself very well. I was asked my opinion which I could only do in a limited way because he was in the room. I did give a good account to a team member over the phone a week earlier but the end result was go see the psychiatrist when he gets back.

I feel unsafe in my own home and walking on eggshells. Hospital says to stay on same meds and his psychiatrist is a week away from contact. He is a hot potato no one wants to deal with.

The past month has seen him spend all his savings and run up a debt, irritable, hyper, acknowledged he is talking a lot, snapping and being aggressive. Professionals dont consider this connected????

He is refusing to leave the house despite intentionally causing damage and i feel that i have no option but to leave my own home I work hard for. 

Re: Staying Safe

Hi @WinterSun

CATT are crisis assessment team

If you call CATT make it very clear that you feel unsafe.

I think you can also call police (if violence involved) and they might take him to hospital but you might need to confirm this.

You should tell pdoc these facts - if you don't feel comfortable talking - put them in writing and hand it at appt. Rather than 'give an opinion' would you feel comfortable stating the facts as you have given them here? This talk gives good tips about how to share observations with pdoc.

If you put an @ in front of forum members name ie @Darcy it "tags" and lets them know a message has been sent.

Re: Staying Safe

@DarcyI have just completed a factual account of the past month the psych doc has been away.

My husband will go to the appt. and I will get him to hand it to the dr.

Son has appt Thursday but was advised to phone and try to get in sooner. Dr only back this week.

With being so stressed about all this didn't even occur to me to try that.

Re: Staying Safe

Hope it goes OK @WinterSun, let us know.

Re: Staying Safe

How did things go @WinterSun

Re: Staying Safe

Hi @Darcy thanks for remembering!

My husband handed over a note with observations from the past month. Psych dr had note from hospital and cohmet too.
It was good my husband attended as he asked him about his diagnosis and the treatment he is on and decided to start son on same mood stabiliser.
So we are working through this now. Dr thinks bi polar element like dad. He goes back in two weeks for follow up but has kept him on all other meds as well. Poor kid he is a chemical mess but more subdued and worried he won't get over it. We just keep pointing to his dad.
I should be used to this from going through it with his dad but a hard road.

Re: Staying Safe


Does your hubby have bipolar as well?  Does he keep stable?  Mine got a diagnosis of BPii with psychotic depression and OCD after many years of difficulty - he only had hypomania and did not have the three S's issues (spending/sex/substance abuse) but response to mood stabiliser has been good. He was on quite a cocktail of drugs too after a crisis but have now reduced down to 2.  I was hoping he would do ok on just one but it wasn't to be.  I am afraid the pdoc might find me a bit much as I do tend to research everything they say and ask questions, this a result of poor carer communication, but I have made it very clear that Mr Darcy's well being is my concern and that there is nothing personal involved. After being told to "look things up" by one of the pdocs I realised Mr D lacked insight, was not giving a good history and so much had been missed which resulted in treatment harm that may well have been avoided.  

I gather a lot of drugs take a while to kick in fully but it is possible to get an early indication after 8-10 days, keep observing and noting things down.

Re: Staying Safe



Yes. We spent five years on a rollercoaster not understanding what was going on despite being seen by two private psych drs. At one point the gp placed him on an anti depressent that sent him into a mania but only learnt that this can happen in bi polar at a later time.

We had to be interviewed for our kids high school admission and I remember with our first child he was high making inappropriate comments and totally embarassing. Two years later he was so low I had him stay home and I apologised for his absence due to illness. I remember being frustrated with his illness and attending a psych dr appointment to be told he would get over it when he's ready. I was appalled.

Due to not being covered as private pt. in a private hospital my husband deteriorated to a state of being catatonic and psychotic. I was advised to contact our local community health who saw him the same day and he was in hospital that night. There followed ect treatment and 6-8 weeks in hospital. He was released on anti-depressent and mood stabiliser meds. This was followed with an outpatients programme at community health and counselling with a private psychologist.

My husband went well and had a relapse ten years after treatment which resulted in a return to hospital for a week and meds adjusted. A further hiccup a year later saw him needing a a week off work and a couple of appointments with his psych dr. Sometimes he is a little more up or down but nothing like our out of control years.

When my son became unwell he differed in that he thought the police were after him which required an anti psychotic. (Husband required one when first treated as he thought 9/11 was his fault!). My husband will often say when unwell I am a bad person and my son expresed this too. I was actually observing and commented that my son's symptons were actually going the same way as my husbands. I couldn't believe it. When I expressed it to psych drs I continually got told he's an individual it's different.

My husband thank goodness is not a spender when manic but sons spending spree, irritability, aggressiveness and recklessness were classic mania, in six weeks we circled from deep depression where we were dragging him out of bed, to being on fast forward, to then being very flat and subdued.

Its been sad to see this happen again in our family.


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