March 11th, 2009

paranoid schizophrenia in a child

I'm researching for a script set in modern day, small(ish) town America. No specific setting has been chosen yet. I've read every article on Wikipedia related to schizophrenia and related symptoms that I can find. I also looked through the archives here. Other reliable resources are welcome and appreciated.

The story is intended to confuse the viewer whether the main character is mentally ill or if the things he is experiencing are actually happening, so I'm okay with having things happen that aren't entirely explainable by schizophrenia, but I'd like to be as accurate as I can, and know where I'm deviating (and not just be making mistakes).

Quick rundown of the plot: Dad is involved in criminal activity, and he knows things are going bad with his crew. Mom doesn't know about the criminal stuff, and Son is roughly 6 and wouldn't know. Dad takes Son to a meeting to assure his security. The rest of the crew doesn't care, and kills Dad in front of Son. Son starts experiencing phenomenon- instead of seeing his own reflection, he sees Dad, and has conversations with him. At first, his behavior worries Mom, but with Dad's instruction, he stops talking about what he's experiencing and does his best to appear normal. Eventually Son, in his late teens, goes and kills everyone involved with Dad's death, under Dad's instruction, and then Mom and himself.

The schizophrenic symptoms I have him displaying are delusions, hallucinations and alogia, which I think is consistent with paranoid schizophrenia.

My questions: since early onset schizophrenia is relatively uncommon, and with Dad's help Son does his best to act normal, is it possible that his behavior could continue unmedicated and unmonitored? Also, is paranoid schizophrenia a likely possibility to explain him seeing and conversing with his dead father in reflective surfaces, and thinking that the people who killed his father will eventually kill him and his mother, encouraging him to get them first? Do I have any glaring mistakes so far?

Thanks, all!

Albert Einstein in California after World War II

When: 1946 or 1947
Where: Greater Los Angeles, California

I know Albert Einstein lived in Pasadena in the 30s while associated with Caltech. But my quick Google searches haven't turned up information on whether or not he was in California after World War II. For my story, I would like him to at least plausibly be in the Los Angeles area, in either 1946 or 1947. Is there a reason I could not have him be in California, perhaps visiting someone or making an appearance, in either of those years?

The Wikipedia article is devoted to his great discoveries and his views on important subjects, but doesn't seem to have a narrative of his life.

Other searches: Einstein in California, Albert Einstein California (found a guy by that name and his phone number living on Ojai!), Albert Einstein UC Berkeley, Einstein Caltech, Einstein Pasadena

Sex while sleeping in the same room

I have a question for world-building.
In the main society I'm focusing on, families are organized into units called nests. All members of a nest sleep in the same room, children and adults. There's usually at least one sexually active couple in a nest.

The question: since everyone's sleeping the in the same room, how exactly would adults have sex? Would they be more likely to do it in a separate place, at a different time than in the evening- say, would it be typical for them to have sex in the morning as opposed to at night- or something else?

Were children just taught that this was what parents did, and not to bother them when they were making those sounds/movements? Or if they heard those sounds, would they be more likely to wake up and bug the adults to see what was going on? Would children who heard adults having sex be more likely to engage in sexual behaviour at earlier ages, or experiment?

I'm used to the current cultural norm, where parents sleep apart from children, but I know the precedent in the past and in other societies was for parents to sleep in the same room with their children and, presumably, have sex there. If anyone could give me any historical anecdotes or any information around that, I'd very much appreciate it.