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Hummingbird4
New Contributor

Broken Newbie

Hi Everyone,

This is my first time writing as I sit here crying. My brother has schizophrenia/bipolar and drug dependency issues and has done for many years now. But he has recently had another episode and this time it was aimed at me. I had been looking after him whilst my parents have taken their first holiday together in years! How do I help someone who can’t recognise they need help at the time. We have dealt with psych wards in the past and been to numerous programs. In his mind I have said something that just didn’t happen at all. I have a young son and partner and it’s starting to take its toll. How do I stop the guilt of feeling like I can’t help my brother but also wanting to protect my son from this. I grew up in a household of mental illness and it took its toll on me and I dont want that for my son. Also are there any resources that can help people with mental illness to find some accomodation in more bush locations. My brother is living with my parents in a bungalow but wants to move away from people. Sorry for the long post. 

10 REPLIES 10

Re: Broken Newbie

Hi @Hummingbird4  welcome to the forums. I'm one of the moderators, just stopping by to offer some welcome and some support 😊

 

I am hearing that you feel very torn about supporting your brother vs. the toll it is taking on you and your family. It is a really difficult situation to be in, and one that I imagine many here would find quite familiar. 

 

We do have a resource that could be helpful, about supporting a loved one with mental health issues, you can see it here: Your Support. There's some stuff in there about encouraging someone to seek help that might be useful, as well as a section about engaging in your own self-care.

 

I don't necessarily have any suggestions about housing... You could get in touch with Launch, though I imagine they are more city-based. They might still have some ideas for you to explore though. Maybe some other members might have some more experience! 

 

Hope you find what you're looking for here. Good to have you join the community 😁

Re: Broken Newbie

Thank you for your reply @Jynx . I will have a look into the resources that you have suggested 

Re: Broken Newbie

Hi @Hummingbird4 

 

Sorry to hear you're feeling so low about all of this. It's a tough situation. I don't really have anything more to add to what @Jynx said but just want to say I'm thinking of you. Take care of yourself,

 

Hugs 

Hanami

Re: Broken Newbie

I am so sorry this is happening for you & can relate to some of this. I look after my brother who has addiction issues and it diverts attention from my partner and stepdaughter (and the guilt and being spread so thing and the feeling responsible for so many people thing gnaws at me). 

It isn’t strategic advice, but I have found recently, having experienced some complex issues with two people I look after, that just sending and phoning any and every related service can help. At one point, I was calling and emailing about 3 services a day. About 80% aren’t the right fit or can’t help the situation, but the ones who can it’s absolutely worth getting them involved. Re: housing - whatever the general homelessness phone line is can be really, really useful (in NSW Link2Home and ACT OneLink- which I have experience calling & can vouch for). Also re: having family with dependence/addiction, I’m trying to get involved more in Family Drug Support (they may run groups near you and certainly have friendly volunteers at the end of the phone). And your local Carers Australia body might be able to support your needs (which can also involve making sure the person you care for has access to the right services). Sorry- I know your trying to be able to focus on your son and partner and your own home and you’ve done multiple programs etc but I’ve just recently had some good fortune in services taking on a lot of the support required which frees things up for family. 

i hope you and your brother can get some much needed support. I recently had a shit of a teary week and found much solace here ❤️

Re: Broken Newbie

Hi Hummingbird4,

It sounds very tough to be a carer for your brother while you also have a great responsibility as a father. The safety for your child is very important. It's totally understandable why you feel that removing your brother away will be better. You mentioned that he wants to move away from people. Have you tried spoken to your brother when he's sober up about moving away and about getting help? I understand that living with someone who has got mental health and substance use issues are very hard. What are your thoughts on trying to talk to him when he's sober up to see if his is aware how his behavior is affecting other people around him. Maybe it's worth asking him what's bothering him to the point it triggers him to use substance, and whether or not he is interested in reducing substance use. 

Re: Broken Newbie

Good Evening @BasicBird ,

 

Thank you for that heartfelt response to @Hummingbird4 - I believe the above post is to you.

 

I welcome you to the forums 🙂

 

Just a little hint: If you'd like to tag a member to your post, type '@' in front of their name so they get a notification.

 

@BasicBird , please reach out if you require any support with the forums, and I look forward to seeing you around 🙂

 

Speak soon, tyme

 

 

Re: Broken Newbie

@tyme 

Thank you Tyme! 🙂 

 

Re: Broken Newbie

You've got pearls of wisdom @BasicBird - we certainly don't want members missing what you have to say to them 🙂

Re: Broken Newbie

@tyme Thank you for a kind comment! 🙂

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