Hi! I believe I can be of help with this issue.
First, let me say I can imagine how frustrating and worrisome this situation must be for you. On the one hand your son is an adult and wants to be treated as one and you are clearly a very loving family and you know he needs help. But on the other hand he is clearly incapable of getting along in the world. And this is presenting a dilemma that is one of the hardest in our day to deal with: without prison, how do you force someone to help himself?
And this is actually the key to my answer to you that you need to consider and think about. Even with conservatorship, he will resist any treatment. But it is important for you to not become adversarial about this. To have him feel that you are on his side. Why?
Because taking his meds, staying true to the treatment, and staying stable, is his lesson to be learned and he will not learn it from being lectured to about it or have his errors pointed out. He will become defensive. So it is vital for you not to take your son's situation personally and to always make him feel as if he is in charge of himself.
One of the problems here is that with many schizophrenia disorders sufferers, manipulating the situation to avoid medication or treatment in general is part of the disorder. It is very pernicious and very difficult to treat. I would like to recommend to you the work of Dr. Xavier Amador. I think that in this area of treatment resistance he has been invaluable to all of us working with schizophrenia. I know some people don't go for his style, but I have found it very valuable and I think you will see its value as well. His whole approach is to find the way to make treatment a win-win situation. Because for your son, treatment is only for others' sakes: family, doctors, etc. Not for himself. The meds probably cause whole sorts of side effects he doesn't like. And this is going to be true of any meds the doctors come up with. Because resistance is often part of the illness and all meds have side effects.
So this approach can help you very much. But not only you personally, but the whole family. Here are his two most known books:
I am Not Sick, I Don't Need Help. This is the book that made Dr. Amador famous. It details a bit the story of his brother, who will remind of you of Leo probably in some aspects. Amazon page for it:
The other book is I'm Right You're Wrong, Now what? Break the Impasse and Get What You Need. Amazon page:
So, read it and digest the idea and then see if you can spread the approach slowly among the family. I wish you the very best!
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