March 11, 2005

My Brother the Homeless Person

There is an excellent editorial on one man's brother who is homeless with schizophrenia:

"The calls come at all hours of the day and night. Most often collect, but not always. Sometimes there's a prim, somewhat disapproving, message which lets me know the call is collect and coming from a jail. I never know what to expect when I pick up the phone. The calm voice of a middle-aged man? His alter ego, the conspiracy theorist? Or the alcoholic who will say anything for a chance to calm his demons?

My brother, my only sibling, is homeless and schizophrenic in America.

His 25-plus years on the road has given me a unique perspective on the homeless debate here in Toronto. Like Toronto Star columnist Joey Slinger, who has frequently written on the homeless, I have sadly concluded that homelessness and mental illness are inextricably linked."

Read the full editorial at the link below.

Source: The Toronto Star - My brother, the homeless person


Thank you, Glen, for sharing your personal experiences with your brother. The Lord must have a special place for those who love and try to protect schizophrenics.

My 33 year old daughter, because of schizophrenia, has also been subject to so much turmoil in her life; sometimes, it appears that she is faced with one major incident after another, things no one else could hope to handle.

Believe it or not, over the past ten years, I think she has been the most 'positive' person I've ever known. In the clutches of a deep psychosis in a mental ward, and numb to the eyebrows from her meds, she managed a wry smile and said: " Mom, I know someone who wants to meet you!" I will never forget her humor that day.

No matter where she has been and in what circumstances, she always says:'Mom, I'm doing alright'...right before and after she recites a litany of horrendous events.

I have a tremendous book called 'Beyond Crazy'which includes the story of ex-finance minister Michael Wilson's late son and Margot Kidder and many other Canadians who have dealt with mental issues. I apologize for not having it close at hand so I can mention the author; but, it may help you a little if you read it. It's priceless.

Will keep you and your brother in my prayers.

Thank you again for your heartfelt story.

Posted by: karencheyne [TypeKey Profile Page] at March 26, 2005 03:31 AM

" mentally ill" a symptom of emotional pain and a broken heart or fusion with abuse. Unless it is an organic condition from an early age and there is no hisory of abuse or neglect.
There is no such thing as a crazy person. Have one sister and one brother homeless by choice. I see in their minds they do this so mom and dad can be right and yet punished for all of the pain inflicted on them in their childhood ( the pinnacle of passive agression inverted to self neglect ) . They bear the brunt of the guilt falsely to redirect the thinking to the parentals being wrong would shift the child parent paradigm. Something they either opt not to do or are too broken to do for themselves, to date. They could be closer to god than you or I understand. Conversations With God. Have I myself struggled with " mental illness " ? No I have been in therapy to heal myself from my broken past and rewire my neuro network. I was the stronger of the three of us. I had a choice to do the spiral in 1990 and chose life and was fortunate to ask for help from the then best depression unit in the United States. Which of course closed a short time later. Namaste - One Who Knew First hand and One Who Knows

Posted by: Jenn at November 28, 2006 08:18 PM

I became reaquainted with my brother about three years ago. He is ten years my junior. I "re-met" him at our mothers funeral. My mother suffered from bipolar disorder. She and I really never had a great relationship. Due to her illness she suffered greatly with alchoholism, irresponsibility, and so many undesirable qualities. When I met my astranged brother at the memorial I had (as I look back now) a somewhat romantic view of the situation. He seemed so intune, and collective. I was immediatley attracted to him. We spent a few days becommming reaquanted. On the last day I decided to book him a flight back home with me. he had no connections nor responsibilities to keep him from coming with me. That should have been my first clue. He came home with me. I thought it would be great. Now three years later he has lived with me on and off nearly 20 months out of the 30 he has been here. He does work (if you call it work). He has a severe drinking problem. He also suffers from that "I'm a victim" disease. He moved out a week ago (again). I explained to him when he moved out, that he would under no circumstances be allowed back. I share my home with my husband of 22 years and my 21 yr old son (who is in school). We have struggled to make a nice home for ourselves. We have a close family, the three of us. My brother showed up yesterday explaining (lying) about his living situation with his 5 day old roommate. basically the roommate caught on very quickly that this would not be a good situation and asked him to leave. The roommate is obviously much smarter than I. As he was sharing this news with me I reitterated the fact that he was not welcome to stay at my home. He explained that he understood. Now he has no place to go. It is the holidays, it is cold and I am confused. I know that I will not be doing him any favors by letting him stay here. I mean if I have nothing I should have my word, right!!? I have no idea what is available assistance wise for him. There has to be some sort of programs available for people with his needs. He is homeless, carless, phoneless, famililess, and helpless. I am at my wits end!! I am by no stretch of the imagination cold or heartless. I just cannot deal with him. It is so draining. If anyone has any insight as to how to help me I would surely appreciate it. Someone out there has had to go through a similar sitation and have solved it some way!!

Posted by: Candice at December 10, 2007 06:54 PM

My first blog post. I’d like to revel in this achievement being that i am homeless and carless myself. lol, but this situation doesnt seem to have a place for much happiness right now. I understand your problem Candace, and can also understand the frustration of those who have provided windows of opportunity to you as well. I can see your disheartenment over having to dial more numbers for more mind numbing questions that you’ve answered over and over before with the same results in your situation, but you have to keep trying something, or that depression will take over. You see, If GOD removes a demon from your being,or that of your brother in this situation, you become marked by the evil one, and he keeps sending those same types of demons back to you to attack you, hence one seeking to get back into trouble from usually the same drug addictions later on, or so you see what im trying to say. Actually, if you dont see, what im saying is, keep dialing, listen to those that have taken even a spare minute of their time to try and help and HOPE, have FAITH, and perhaps one of those future phone calls will contain your salvation from this problem!! I know thats what im having to do right now. I hope to hear good news from you and i will pray for you.

Posted by: Jackson at December 30, 2007 11:28 PM

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