Good Day. My brother’s personality has completely changed over the past couple of days. He has never been an extrovert at all but now it seems that he has completely closed up. We, as brothers, haven’t had the greatest of childhoods but I’ve never blamed our circumstances on our lack of neccesities in our younger days. He recently woke me up at 1.30am. He was shivering, crying and ranting about how we need to repent for our sins (spiritually) as he feels that we are somehow cursed with bad fortune as a result of our sinful lives. My brother has struggled to hold down a job and cannot seem to focus on any one thing for longer than a couple of months. I always thought that he was just being lazy and avoiding ‘life’ for as long as he could. In the most recent position that he held, he kept complaining that his supervisors made him do more work than what he should and that they did not treat him with respect. NOW, he does not talk to anyone and when he does, he doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. It seems that something happened to him but he is under the impression that everyone knows about it (Everyone being my father, myself and his friends), where we have absolutely no clue! He doesn’t speak clearly, he half mumbles a statement and then goes on to say ‘Oh but you know…’ Everyone is really worried about him but we have no idea what is wrong. I don’t think that it could be drugs as I am with him most of the time. I’m just really trying to find some sort of direction to take this matter further…

A: I wish I knew how services are organized in your country. Here in the States, I would advise someone in your position to take your brother to a hosptial Emergency Room or a Crisis Team for an evaluation. It sounds like he is having some kind of break down. The symptoms you describe could mark the onset of a psychosis. I think he needs to talk to someone who is qualified to make a psychiatric diagnosis. Please go with him. Chances are he isn’t experiencing on the inside what you are seeing on the outside. The doctor needs to know what you are observing – especially since it’s hard to understand him and he has some idea that others already know what he is thinking so probably won’t be very communicative. Please don’t wait to try to get some help. I think you are right to be concerned.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 26 Mar 2007

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2007). My brother’s personality has completely changed.. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 1, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2007/03/26/my-brothers-personality-has-completely-changed/