You want to help a mentally unstable family member as best as you can. Despite your best efforts, your loved one may continue to cope with a mental health disorder that affects their well-being. If you take appropriate actions, you can make sure your family member receives the care and support they need.
At Simmrin Law Group, we handle a wide range of criminal cases, including those involving mentally unstable family members. If you need legal help, reach out to our law firm today. In the meantime, we are here to answer common questions surrounding how to deal with a mentally unstable family member.
How Can I Tell if a Family Member Is Mentally Unstable?
A family member may be dealing with a mental illness without disclosing it to anyone else. There can be times when a family member is coping with a mental illness without receiving a medical diagnosis or treatments for it as well. Yet, there are many signs that a family member may be mentally unstable, including:
- Trouble developing or maintaining relationships
- Tendency to isolate from social settings
- Inability or unwillingness to trust others
- Difficulty taking care of themselves
- Difficulty establishing or enforcing boundaries
Along with these signs, a family member that is mentally unstable may experience guilt, shame, anger, and other feelings that impact their ability to function. The family member may also be prone to behavioral issues such as angry outbursts. If a family member displays any issues that indicate they may be mentally unstable, it is paramount to pursue help right away.
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What Can I Do to Help a Mentally Unstable Family Member?
There are several things you can do to help a family member who may be mentally unstable. These include:
- Share your concerns. Discuss your concerns about your family member’s mental well-being with them and remain open and willing to talk to them about it.
- Provide reassurance. Tell your family member that you want to help them in any way you can and give them plenty of reassurance that you are looking out for their best interests.
- Connect this person with mental health treatment providers. Ask a family member if they are getting mental health treatments, and if not, offer to help this individual explore mental health treatment options.
- Help with everyday tasks. Let your family member know you are willing to assist them with everyday tasks that they find to be overwhelming or stressful.
- Treat your family member with respect. Be compassionate and empathetic toward your family member and continue to give the individual the respect they deserve.
These things may help you assist a family member in coping with a mental health disorder in the short term. However, if you believe your family member may be a threat to themselves or someone else, get immediate help. At this time, call the National Suicide Prevention Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
What Should I Do if a Family Member Is Mentally Unstable and Hurts Themselves or Others?
Call 9-1-1 if a family member shows signs of mental instability and is hurting themselves or others. Make sure you and anyone else in this situation are safe. Do what you can to make sure your family member is safe, too.
Remember, there is no telling how a mentally unstable family member will respond to your actions. By contacting 911, police officers and medical personnel can arrive wherever your family member is located. They have the training to deal with mentally unstable individuals and will ensure your family member receives proper care and support.
In some instances, a mentally unstable family member may be placed on a 5150 hold if they are a threat to themselves or others. If this happens, your family member will be put into a mental health treatment facility for 72 hours. During this period, your family member will receive mental health treatments without their consent.
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Does a 5150 Hold Mean My Mentally Unstable Family Member Is Being Arrested?
A 5150 hold means that a mentally unstable family member is placed under the care and supervision of a mental health treatment facility. From here, the treating facility’s staff will provide your family member with services and support. After the 72-hour hold, the treating facility’s staff will determine if it has probable cause to request an additional hold or other mental health treatment options.
When a 5150 hold ends, a Certification Review Hearing may be used to determine if a 5250 will be enacted. A 5250 is a 14-day hold at a mental health treatment facility. Treating facility staff may propose a 5250 if they believe your family member continues to be a threat to themselves or others or shows they are incapable of taking care of themselves.
A Mental Health Hearing Referee reviews evidence from a treating facility’s staff during a Certification Review Hearing. If the referee finds a 5250 is warranted, your family member may be placed on the 14-day hold. This allows your family member to continue to receive mental health treatments that extend beyond those administered under their 5150 hold.
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What Can I Do to Help My Mentally Unstable Family Member Avoid a Mental Health Hold?
The best thing you can do is try to support your mentally unstable family member and make sure this individual gets any care they need. If you support your family member, this individual may be willing to explore mental health treatment options. Then, your family member can get the help they need to start to feel their best once again.
If your mentally unstable family member is placed on a mental health hold, continue to support them. A mental health hold is not an arrest and will not result in a criminal conviction that shows up on a family member’s background check. The hold gives your family member an opportunity to get help with their mental health issues.
For those interested in pursuing legal help due to a family member’s mental health hold, you can hire an attorney. This allows your family member to receive legal representation in any hearings relating to their mental health hold. The attorney will ensure your family member’s legal rights are protected at all times.
Where Can I Find a Lawyer to Help with a Case Involving a Mentally Unstable Family Member?
Simmrin Law Group offers legal services in cases involving mentally unstable family members. To learn more or request a free case evaluation, please get in touch with us today.