Scared. I want my family to live.

My older sister, who I'll call N, texted me these messages:
*I have a question, what would you do if everyone passes away and you come home.
*Okay. I bought a gun
*I want to shoot the family,but you aren't here.....

What should I do and where should I start?
N told me she does not have access to the gun until Monday because of background checks and stuff, but I don't want to wait to take action.
N has had a history of uncertainty. She flunked/dropped out of college, has done various part-time jobs, has been in and out of the mental hospital, joined the Navy for a while, looked into being a police officer. She's talked about being sad about life in general. As the eldest sibling, she feels that she ought to have a stable and independent life. She's only a little older than me, and I remind her constantly that there's no rush. I never realized that she felt so bad that she would be willing take everyone down with her.
I was complaining about winter break coming to an end, but I'm happy that being away from home seems to be at least a small reason to keep her from doing anything rash, but I won't feel safe returning home again for summer, and I love my family, and I want them to stay with me for as long as possible. I don't want to make a wrong move.
I called my little sister, and she assures me that everyone is safe. My parents do not know anything yet.

Replies

  • CafeRacer808
    CafeRacer808 Posts: 2,396 Member
    Yikes! If I was in your shoes, I'd absolutely alert my parents ASAP. I would also call my sister's mental health provider (assuming she has one) and the police. Even if she has no real intention of carry out her plan, the threat she's making is, at the very least, a cry for help.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,726 Member
    I am sorry. You have to tell the police now, then your parents. Why not your parents first? Because they may talk you out of the idea to call the police. You have to protect your family, yourself, and your older sister too.

    All of this
  • Susieq_1994
    Susieq_1994 Posts: 5,361 Member
    Call the police. Right away. You may be able to prevent a tragedy.
  • neldabg
    neldabg Posts: 1,451 Member
    edited January 2017
    Thanks for the responses. Okay police first then. Is it better that I (~400 miles away) or is better that someone who's at home right now make the call? Does it matter? Do I just say what I've written here? What if they just make a note of the situation and do not come?
    To expand, she also texted me not to tell anyone, which is why I didn't immediately call the police. I wanted to be sure first that involving the police wouldn't make things worse.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,726 Member
    neldabg wrote: »
    Thanks for the responses. Okay police first then. Is it better that I (~400 miles away) or is better that someone who's at home right now make the call? Does it matter? Do I just say what I've written here? What if they just make a note of the situation and do not come?
    To expand, she also texted me not to tell anyone, which is why I didn't immediately call the police. I wanted to be sure first that involving the police wouldn't make things worse.

    Call the emergency number for the police and explain what you said in your first post.
  • Susieq_1994
    Susieq_1994 Posts: 5,361 Member
    neldabg wrote: »
    Thanks for the responses. Okay police first then. Is it better that I (~400 miles away) or is better that someone who's at home right now make the call? Does it matter? Do I just say what I've written here? What if they just make a note of the situation and do not come?
    To expand, she also texted me not to tell anyone, which is why I didn't immediately call the police. I wanted to be sure first that involving the police wouldn't make things worse.

    Call the emergency number for the police and explain what you said in your first post.

    This. Doesn't matter if you're far away, you're the one she told (and for all you know, she told you because she thinks you're too far away to do anything about it).
  • Cylphin60
    Cylphin60 Posts: 863 Member
    Call the police. You have hard evidence. You may be able to get the gun purchase stopped. Do not tell your parents first.

    Get off the web, if you haven't yet and do this right now. Right now.
  • neldabg
    neldabg Posts: 1,451 Member
    neldabg wrote: »
    Thanks for the responses. Okay police first then. Is it better that I (~400 miles away) or is better that someone who's at home right now make the call? Does it matter? Do I just say what I've written here? What if they just make a note of the situation and do not come?
    To expand, she also texted me not to tell anyone, which is why I didn't immediately call the police. I wanted to be sure first that involving the police wouldn't make things worse.

    Call the emergency number for the police and explain what you said in your first post.

    Will do. Thank you so much.
    "Well officer, I was going to call you but I thought I'd ask on a fitness site first"

    Yes. I get where you're coming from. I know how it sounds. Of course, if this was not a threat and my sister was pointing a gun right now at my family, I would've immediately notified police. However, I have zero experience in these type of situations and with the police, and I'm the type of person who plans and thinks before taking action. MFP happens to be my main and the most responsive of my online accounts, so I went here first.
    neldabg wrote: »
    Thanks for the responses. Okay police first then. Is it better that I (~400 miles away) or is better that someone who's at home right now make the call? Does it matter? Do I just say what I've written here? What if they just make a note of the situation and do not come?
    To expand, she also texted me not to tell anyone, which is why I didn't immediately call the police. I wanted to be sure first that involving the police wouldn't make things worse.

    Call the emergency number for the police and explain what you said in your first post.

    This. Doesn't matter if you're far away, you're the one she told (and for all you know, she told you because she thinks you're too far away to do anything about it).

    Thanks. I didn't even think of that possibly being the reason why she would tell me.


    I'm calling the cops. Thank you so much for the advice you all. I'll send updates later on.
  • Susieq_1994
    Susieq_1994 Posts: 5,361 Member
    @neldabg I'm glad. Please keep us updated, because I'll be worrying about this!
  • neldabg wrote: »
    My older sister, who I'll call N, texted me these messages:
    *I have a question, what would you do if everyone passes away and you come home.
    *Okay. I bought a gun
    *I want to shoot the family,but you aren't here.....

    What should I do and where should I start?
    N told me she does not have access to the gun until Monday because of background checks and stuff, but I don't want to wait to take action.
    N has had a history of uncertainty. She flunked/dropped out of college, has done various part-time jobs, has been in and out of the mental hospital, joined the Navy for a while, looked into being a police officer. She's talked about being sad about life in general. As the eldest sibling, she feels that she ought to have a stable and independent life. She's only a little older than me, and I remind her constantly that there's no rush. I never realized that she felt so bad that she would be willing take everyone down with her.
    I was complaining about winter break coming to an end, but I'm happy that being away from home seems to be at least a small reason to keep her from doing anything rash, but I won't feel safe returning home again for summer, and I love my family, and I want them to stay with me for as long as possible. I don't want to make a wrong move.
    I called my little sister, and she assures me that everyone is safe. My parents do not know anything yet.

    call the flipping police. Don't play around. She clearly is looking for help; if she wanted to do this she wouldn't have said anything. Answer her call for help and get her into treatment STAT!

  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,465 Member
    neldabg wrote: »
    My older sister, who I'll call N, texted me these messages:
    *I have a question, what would you do if everyone passes away and you come home.
    *Okay. I bought a gun
    *I want to shoot the family,but you aren't here.....

    What should I do and where should I start?
    N told me she does not have access to the gun until Monday because of background checks and stuff, but I don't want to wait to take action.
    N has had a history of uncertainty. She flunked/dropped out of college, has done various part-time jobs, has been in and out of the mental hospital, joined the Navy for a while, looked into being a police officer. She's talked about being sad about life in general. As the eldest sibling, she feels that she ought to have a stable and independent life. She's only a little older than me, and I remind her constantly that there's no rush. I never realized that she felt so bad that she would be willing take everyone down with her.
    I was complaining about winter break coming to an end, but I'm happy that being away from home seems to be at least a small reason to keep her from doing anything rash, but I won't feel safe returning home again for summer, and I love my family, and I want them to stay with me for as long as possible. I don't want to make a wrong move.
    I called my little sister, and she assures me that everyone is safe. My parents do not know anything yet.

    Tell your parents and call the police. Also call a crisis line in your community and ask if they can help you figure out how to get her help.
  • neldabg
    neldabg Posts: 1,451 Member
    TLDR: Everything's fine now. Thanks for the help!
    Update:
    When I called the cops, they said that they would perform a welfare check. According to my little sister, the cops who arrived were nice and understanding. They took my older sister, N, to the mental hosptial she's been in and out of. I'm glad I didn't talk to my parents first after all @Isabelle2222 . Neither parent saw any reason to take action and my little sister told me that my mom said she did not like that I called the cops. Still, I'm sure I did the right thing. My little sister was getting ready to sleep over at a friend's house, and my little brother was planning to stay up all night. I'm *really* hoping to land a summer internship away from home now if N is released once again.
    *sigh* I hate to write it, but I sometimes think N will not make it to her 30th birthday. Another thing N told me yesterday was that she heard that if you point a gun at a cop, they were guaranteed to shoot you down, or at the very least, take you away. I don't think she wants to be alive and my words nor the words of my family seem to comfort her for long.
    Idk for sure what happened to spark it all, but she really started to decline slowly but surely after high school graduation.
    My parents are devout Christians and believe it is in part the work of demons, and that both prayer and her medication will be enough to save her. I don't agree. She seems fine for weeks or months at a time, excitedly telling me about all the plans she has for the future, and then she crashes, worse and worse each time. This is the first time she mentioned plans for murder. I don't want her to commit suicide, but there's only so much I can do to help. I did check out crisis lines, thanks @lorrpb .
    Thanks for the PSA @jemhh . I will no longer hesitate in the future.
    Anyways, sorry for the long ramble. Just some thoughts I had.
    Thank you so much for your responses and insights!
  • Isabelle2222
    Isabelle2222 Posts: 12 Member
    edited January 2017
    neldabg wrote: »
    TLDR: Everything's fine now. Thanks for the help!
    Update:
    When I called the cops, they said that they would perform a welfare check. According to my little sister, the cops who arrived were nice and understanding. They took my older sister, N, to the mental hosptial she's been in and out of. I'm glad I didn't talk to my parents first after all @Isabelle2222 . Neither parent saw any reason to take action and my little sister told me that my mom said she did not like that I called the cops. Still, I'm sure I did the right thing. My little sister was getting ready to sleep over at a friend's house, and my little brother was planning to stay up all night. I'm *really* hoping to land a summer internship away from home now if N is released once again.
    *sigh* I hate to write it, but I sometimes think N will not make it to her 30th birthday. Another thing N told me yesterday was that she heard that if you point a gun at a cop, they were guaranteed to shoot you down, or at the very least, take you away. I don't think she wants to be alive and my words nor the words of my family seem to comfort her for long.
    Idk for sure what happened to spark it all, but she really started to decline slowly but surely after high school graduation.
    My parents are devout Christians and believe it is in part the work of demons, and that both prayer and her medication will be enough to save her. I don't agree. She seems fine for weeks or months at a time, excitedly telling me about all the plans she has for the future, and then she crashes, worse and worse each time. This is the first time she mentioned plans for murder. I don't want her to commit suicide, but there's only so much I can do to help. I did check out crisis lines, thanks @lorrpb .
    Thanks for the PSA @jemhh . I will no longer hesitate in the future.
    Anyways, sorry for the long ramble. Just some thoughts I had.
    Thank you so much for your responses and insights!

    Parents are often unreasonable and lack common sense when it comes to their children. It's all about love, and they still see us like little babies, no matter the issue or the age. It's normal, but not useful ...

    As for the police: I think that in most cities, they will send out cops that had special training and know how to handle these special situations. Thus my advice to call them first.

    Take heart. Your sister might eventually get better. I hope there is decent mental health care services where you live, because this is what she needs. Unfortunately, love does not solve everything ...
  • jemhh
    jemhh Posts: 14,273 Member
    @neldabg, you did the right thing. I am so sorry about your sister. Late teens/early 20s is a common time for mental illness to rear its head. I can only imagine how hard it is for you to see her struggle and how much it affects your family.
  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,465 Member
    I understand what you are saying about your parents. I don't know the ages of anyone involved. I still think you should tell them if anything like thus happens again. Not because you think they will do something, not because you expect them to change, but because they should know. She threatened to kill them. Everyone threatened should know. What if something bad did happen and they hadn't been told? Hope it all gets worked out.
  • jgnatca
    jgnatca Posts: 14,465 Member
    There's a lot of mental illness in my family. I think your sister has an emerging mental illness possibly misdiagnosed. Once it is figured out she can have a productive and interesting life. Consider for instance the life of Carrie Fisher.

    In fact it might be a good time for you an N to read one of her books, perhaps "house of cards".

    Maybe because of the high incidence of mental illness in our family, I don't hesitate to call in the first responders at the first hint of danger. I've committed two family members and helped get a third in the hospital. All three remained on their medication for the rest of their lives after their short committal at the hospital.

    Yet another family member called me at work in the middle of the day, bored and depressed, threatening suicide. Then she hung up. I did not hesitate. I dialled 9-1-1. Afterwards she tore a strip off me as she was nearly charged with mischief. I told her I will not have a death on my hands and if she ever did that again I would do the same thing. Guess what? She never tried that little trick again.

    Boundaries.

    I can be loving, kind, accessible and firm while not tolerating any monkey business. Since my family members know where I stand they can continue to enjoy my company. And I keep my own sanity.