I'm worried about my brother. He suffers schizophrenia and depression and he seems to not be getting better despite what I've tried to do for him this past year. He's actually gotten a bit worse.
I didn't know he wouldn't be capable of taking care of himself. I hadn't seen his face in a few years prior to this. I didn't really know how disabled he was. 11 moths ago, he had just moved from a run down motel existence to a duplex that was a rathole with no utilities whatsoever. He couldn't get his SS money because he had no payee. He found me so that I could help him with this. I realized that being a payee was more than cashing his check and handing him the money like my mother had been doing. I'm getting him out of this shithole. He doesn't look well or happy no matter how brave he tries to be.
I rented a decent one-bedroom apartment for him, a two minute walk from my house. I had plans for the things I was gonna buy for his apartment. We discussed buying more clothes and more everything as time went on because he really didn't have anything and all at once we were shopping like crazy and it still wouldn't be enough stuff, not for a normal, functioning person that cares about certain things.
It only took two months before I realized that he was no longer coming over to do his laundry. Sheets? Towels? Clothes? He claimed to be washing them in the apartment facilities. Okay. I let it go because he's a grown man and I'm trying to help him feel responsible for himself.
It was a few days before Thanksgiving and I hadn't been in that apartment for two months. He moved in there in June. September was the last time I had seen the place inside. Every time I came over, he would rush past me out the door, claiming to want to be driven to the store, etc. It only took twice for me to realize what he was doing. He was trying to keep me out of that apartment so I couldn't see what a mess it was.
I warned him that I was coming by the day before Thanksgiving so I could check out his place, see what he needed, take him grocery shopping, etc. "Okay". I get over there and he does the same bullshit. He tries to rush past me, get me to take him to get cigarettes and then leave me outside and go back inside. "Bye! Thanks!" Not this time, brother. I'm coming INSIDE. I will not be shut out. I was not in his life to manage his social security money, run around every month paying his bills, sitting at the SS office for hours, driving him to doctor appts and handing him money into a black hole so he could live in a shithole. LET ME IN RIGHT NOW!
He sat in my car and refused to get out. Seriously? You flat out refuse to even get out of my car? Oh, this doesn't make me suspicious at all!
I lost it and screamed at him. I threatened to take myself off his account as payee and let him go stay with a wretched cousin of ours who will take all his money and not give a shit if he rots in a bedroom. I made him get out of my car, screamed some more in his face and sped off like a demon. I turned right back around and knocked on his door. He's wouldn't open it. I screamed through the door;
"Whatever you've got in here that you don't want me to see, you'd better get it out of here by tomorrow or I'm done with you! When I come back here tomorrow you'd better open this fucking door and let me in here or I'm warning you, you'll never see me again. I'll give you your money, contact SS and be off this case by Monday!"
The next day, I got up bright and early and went right over there. He reluctantly opened the door for me. I went straight the fuck off. What the fuck has he been doing all this time? He threw away dishes rather than wash them because none of the shit I bought him could be found. He destroyed his brand new microwave with aluminum foil and caught fire to it, almost burning the place down. The bathroom sink was clogged with black, scummy water, the bathtub hadn't been cleaned. The kitchen looked like hell. The refrigerator was full of spilled crap and empty boxes.
He put those empty boxes in there to psyche me out and make me think he had food so I would go away. I insisted on taking him shopping. He insisted that he was fine. That was one of his excuses for keeping me out for two-three months.
He also doesn't think I know that he's been drinking alcohol with his meds and his apartment was trashed with empty bottles before he let me in the next day. That's the MAIN reason he refused to let me in.
I'm looking around at the nastiness and filth, the cigarette ashes in the carpet, the ruined furniture that I acquired for him in great condition and I'm going off like a steam whistle. The entire time, he's delsional. He's arguing with me about what I see. It's occurring to me that he thinks this is a Jedi Mind Trick or "Are you gonna believe me or your lying eyes?" I lost my fucking mind at that point.
I told him things that I still feel bad about today;
"Let me explain. I have kids to raise. I do not give a FUCK about you as much as I do them. The reason I'm doing this is because is your mother isn't worth a damn. I do not need this. I have depression that I was turned down by SS for. I work 40 hours a week and if you think I'm gonna let you taking me for granted fuck up MY life and throw ME back into depression, you've got another think coming. I will drop you so fast, you won't know wtf happened and I'll never say another word to you in my life!"
I made some more threats about the apartment then proceeded to start scrubbing, bitching and yelling the whole time. I had brought a huge assortment of cleansers and sponges and I was FURIOUS that my day off had to be spent cleaning my grown ass brother's filthy apartment.
I eventually calmed down and we went and bought him a nice winter coat and shopped for all the things he had been lying to me about buying while he was only purchasing alcohol.
Over the next month, I had a talk with my then live-in bf about living with my brother. He was overjoyed. He had been sneaking around seeing some new woman and was anxious to find a way to get rid of me anyway and have an excuse for one of us to move out. The next few months after that were so personally turbulent for me that I was sure that my brother hadn't changed at all and I didn't even have to see the place to know. I was too exhausted to fight with my brother anymore because I was fighting my now ex bf and his new girlfriend and a host of other people. I simply resolved to stay away until it was time for my brother to move in with me. My depression was looming over me and I had gotten verbally abusive with another person who was suffering worse than I was. Nobody needs that. I just let it go for a while.
I had a talk with the landlord and agreed to pay off the last two months of my brother's lease because my brother really wasn't fit to live on his own. I gave the landlord a brief rundown of things that happened around Thanksgiving and he understood. The landlord even helped to move my brother's bed for us, the only thing that was fit to bring into my house from that place.
The day we move the bed, my brother's up to his old shit again, trying to block me from the apartment. He wouldn't let me or the landlord in. I was angry but I was unwilling to argue with him in front of the landlord. We got the bed in the house and my brother promised to come back with the rest of the crap he had that could fit into one little box.
He never came back that night.
For the next week, he had the nerve to keep telling me he was coming that night and never show up. At this point, he has no electricity at the apartment. He's still going over there! He won't stop going over there! WTF?!
He won't let me in to clean. It's been a week. I'm losing my mind at this point. I really don't need this shit. He'd rather be over there in that dark shithole with no bed so he can DRINK ALCOHOL.
He finally got himself over here for good a few days ago and I took the keys from him so he couldn't get back into the other place. He wakes up today asking for money to go to the store.
"Happy Birthday. You're 34 today."
He's like; "Huh? It's my birthday?"
"Yep. March 16th. I'm gonna buy you something. I got paid today, okay?"
"Okay. Thank you."
And that's pretty much the extent of our convos. He stays in that room. I don't know what to do but buy him some furniture and nice room stuff and make him comfortable in there until he's ready to come out.
I'm so worried. What if he never comes out?
I'm gonna have a talk with his doctor and see what else I can do. I've said mean things to him but he knows I've always been like a mother to him. And that's what bugs me. I'm NOT his mother. I don't want him lying to me like a teenager but he can't see me any other way because I've been taking care of him since we were both little kids. I just want him to be alright one day and have the life HE wants. He can't handle taking care of himself or an entire apartment. We're gonna start with one room and go from there. It's all I can think of right now.
He refuses to admit or even acknowledge a drinking problem so how can I even attempt to remedy that problem? He hides it from me and he'll argue with me right to my face as if I'm stupid, making my blood boil the whole time.
Thanks for listening and thanks for supporting social security benefits for the disabled or else I would have had no resources to help my brother at all.
9:49 AM PT: I'm gonna be back in a little while to respond and read all your suggestions and comments. I'm on my way to work and today is one of those days I just feeling like calling in. But I can't. I need the money so I'll get in my zone and get through the day. I'll see y'all when I get back.