Quick intro of me, I frequent this site a lot and finally decided to join to get some advice as I have no one else to really ask. I am 22 year old commuting to college and working part time. Live with my mom and one brother (not the abusive one). From youngest of 8. Rest of siblings moved (1 died) and my father passed away about 4 years ago.
So not sure where to start on this, but the brother in question was the second oldest. He has a history of mental illness, going to mental hospitals a few times, jail plenty of times, jail in other countries plenty of times. Which my dad would usually bail him out. He would go back on meds, everyone would think it's okay then he would stop and get violent again. I honestly can't even tell you how many times he has attacked us, or got close to attacking people in public. One time last year my sister was driving him back from a bar, he screamed he wanted to go back and pulled her hair and grabbed the wheel almost crashing. My other two brothers who drove seperate (including the one who passed) pulled over to help and he proceeded to attack them, including slamming the one's face into the concrete. Someone called police, but my siblings declined to press charges and brought him home. He then attacked them outside, but they ran in and he eventually calmed down. My one brother's room was in the basement and as I was laying down (and we all thought it was over) I heard movement, like chairs and such. Came down with other brother to see the crazy one choking out my brother, and I don't know what would have happened if we hadn't come in time. We took him off and he then attacked me. The worst part is the next day they were all laughing about it at Thanksgiving, NO ONE TAKES IT SERIOUSLY!
Another quick one, which was the last straw for me. My girlfriend and I went to a party and came home and she spent the night. I had to work in the morning so I got up early, as I was getting dressed I heard loud noises and my nephew (at the time my pregnant sister and her 4/5 year old son lived here) crying. I ran downstairs to see crazy brother choking her and slamming her head into the floor, with her son right there screaming and crying. I took him off and then we fought for a bit and he was very violent, girlfriend called police and they finally showed up. Sister ended up thinking it was funny and even offered to take him to hospital (I gave him a cut lip) and my nephew was too scared so I took him to another sisters house. As you can see they love drama!! Note, these are just two examples of the many many times. My mom got home later and excused his actions as "she said some mean things" now mind you he is about 37! As a kid if I punched my brother for calling me a name I'd be grounded!
One day he called child services to say my mom was raping my sisters newborn baby. Finally that was the last straw and my mom kicked him out. I felt relieved because I'd always be walking on egg shells all day long. He would harass my girlfriend and I, threatening us and calling us names and slamming things, trying to intimidate us. My mom was always a softie and he played into that, when she would come back he'd manipulate her, though he was still very verbally abusive and mean to her.
Anyways fast forward and he called and wants to come back and my mom wants to "one last chance" (how many of those does he get). And I am furious. I don't know what to do, I can't afford to move out and legally I can't do anything. I am fit but he was always pretty strong and I could get unlucky one day. My girlfriend is too scared to come over, my other siblings think I am the mean one for saying he shouldn't be allowed back. Everytime he comes back he does the same thing, doesn't work or pay for anything, doesn't help out, makes a mess and is abusive towards everyone. It is just so aggravating to have them act like I am the bad guy because I won't help and want to live with someone who is abusive to my girlfriend and I, and attacks me and no one else seems to care about that fact. The other siblings don't have to live with him, so they don't understand.
Sorry for the wall of text but please take time to read, I can answer any questions. Just looking for advice or reassurance on what to do.
One heck of a family you got there. I grew up in a small town and my family had some of these traits also. For some reason they just love drama and when there isn't any they will create it or seek it out. I never understood it and probably never will.
How much longer do you have until you graduate college?
I'm not sure there are any real easy solutions. Get a second job so that you can afford your own place. Find someone with an extra room that needs help around the house or with yard work and earn your stay. Spend all your time at the library studying or do your homework at a 24 hour restaurant. I used to stay up all night at Whataburger studying and doing homework. If you have to stay at home then I would only go there to sleep then wake up shower and leave. Basically spend as little time there as possible.
I have about a year left of college until I will have my four year degree in Criminal Justice (ironic huh?) I actually have been looking for a second or full time job to save money up.
Hm oddly I didn't think about going to library or something for homework, seeing as my classes are online over the summer I just assumed I'd be stuck here at home. Though I do plan to spend very little time here, come back and mow and such and change, make sure my mom is okay. I know I probably won't be bringing over my girlfriend though.
One big stressor is the fact that nobody else (except my girlfriend) seems to take things seriously. My father would have never put up with him pulling those stunts, he was all about tough love. I just wish I could convince the others.
I sort of tried to the judge thing, well not directly to a judge. After the time I came down to him attacking my sister I went to the police the next day before work. I forget exactly what the form was called, but I had to write a statement of why he is a danger to himself or others and they faxed it to like the DA or someone, who then approved it. So they came and picked him up and took him to the hospital to be mentally checked-out. Unfortunately he came back because I guess he fooled the doctors too. Boy was that an awkward night to come home to after work.
To be honest the first time she kicked him out I was surprised she finally did. It just sucks she can't stick to it.
I agree with the other recommendations about alternative housing. Your college will also have counselors, maybe even a social worker, to help.
In addition, there are organizations and support groups for people just like you. My family uses the National Alliance on Mental Illness. They offer free classes for family members of the mentally ill. The classes go through treatment options, placement options, and coping strategies. They also facilitate support groups where people can share coping strategies. They're trying to expand their presence in schools and colleges, so you may be able to work with them on campus, or you might have to go to their office or a church or community center. Many also offer "warm lines" that people can call during some hours and get referrals and advice. They have talks about the circumstances under which people can be forced to get treatment, and how to persuade others to go voluntarily.
You could also call the police's non-emergency line, or go to a station and ask to talk to an officer. Explain the history, and ask for advice. Another resource would be any parole officers your brother had. Also look at your city's and your county's web sites - all the resources for residents. Look for "adult resources" or "family services." They will also have professionals to advise you and direct you to support groups.
I tried the police route, I mentioned in response to Rick. They took him to the hospital and duped the doc's because they didn't see anything mentally wrong with him, depsite his long rap sheet and hospitalizations. I'm sure they just wanted to get through all that.
I wish that would work. Unfortunately the legal system in America has never met a real criminal that they couldn't wait to release back onto society. The guy will not stay locked up unless he kills somebody and even then there will be plenty of people seeking to get him released. We spend most of our time and resources going after speeding tickets at the end of each month when it is quota time.
I can't speak for the relative of the OP but in my experiences I have seen many people who don't want things like this to change. The must have this type of drama in their lives and they will create drama if it doesn't happen on its own. Seth seems like the only person in the house who thinks there is a problem. He can't save everyone in the house because they will pull him down with them before he can do that. He needs to get out. If others in the family expressed his views then that might be a different story and something worth working toward.
Particularly, the kinds of crimes and the circumstances of arrest that people like this individual are usually brought in for are either not high prosecution priorities, or they're too high a priority and might not be truly good for the brother. (Does OP want a hand in this guy serving 20 years?)
Over time, the OP can hope to get the rest of the family to wake up. In the mean time, I think his mother can choose whom she lives with.
I have to agree with Brian. Your brother needs professional help. By ignoring the situation and the behaviors, the family is sending him the message that it is ok.
Well he has been in and out of jail many a times. In fact after he was kicked out (march 2012) by September he got arrested down in SC, one of my drama-loving sisters googled it. And he has been down there since at least then. My other sister went down there for vacation this past week, apparently met up with him and I am sure convinced him to come back home. She even gave him her phone to call my mom to try to come home. Now my mom is just now able to say no when her work wants her to stay, let alone say no to him. So she did the whole "one last chance" thing, again.
I talked to a few people and my girlfriend's parents said I could stay with them, I'd help with mowing and such. I just fear leaving my mom alone with him. Even if he didn't hit her he was never nice to her and would say really hateful and mean things. And all I want is for us to be happy but doesn't work with him around.
Seems like my siblings made me the go to guy. I was around to take care of my sick dad when he was dying, while they lived away or were at college. I am just tired of seeing pain and also my mom suffering, because she is very (and too) nice.
You and your family are in an exceedingly dangerous situation. Unfortunately, the police and/or social services probably won’t be able to protect you and sooner or later your brother will succeed in really harming someone. If you can’t get your brother committed you must stay away from him, whatever the cost. I suggest you read The Gift of Fear by Gavin de Becker. You can probably get it at your local library. It may help you get a handle on this.
Good luck Seth