Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Anyone else taking care of a schizophrenic parent?

My mother is schizophrenic and I’m autistic. she’s 48 and I’m 25. I was bounced around the foster system and pumped full of pills as a kid. No one ever taught me how to be a person, let alone and adult, let alone a caregiver. I don’t even know how to hold a conversation, so I’m afraid I couldn’t even hold a job at McDonald’s. I need structure in my life, and she’s anti-structure in every way. I feel like my emotions don’t matter, because she’s ALWAYS suffering through such extreme agony. She feels worse than I do, worse than I could imagine. I guess it’s a competition, so apparently things like that matter. I feel like I have no rights, my entire existence is just to take care of her, and yet she won’t even let me do anything for her. I feel like her crying is going to haunt me for my entire life. I already turn around because I think I hear her sobbing when she’s not here. I don’t know which is worse- listening to her cry, or listening to her try to hold it in. I’m so resentful sometimes. On the one hand my heart breaks over what she has to live with, but on the other hand I can’t stand her hopeless attitude and the way she always has to shoot down my suggestions and burst my bubble. Sometimes I feel like shes just a big schizophrenic voice I have to live with. She refuses to take her anti-psychotics. she hides them from herself or throws them away and acts like a child, but then turns around and says “I have enough stress in my life without the med police on my ass”, so what am I supposed to do? She only takes her favorite meds. I’m so frustrated and disheartened that I don’t know what to do. She is friggin psychotic and refuses any help.

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I’m so sorry you are going through this. Is here anyone that you can think of to offer support. Does she have any family or church nearby that could give you a little break? It sounds like you are overloaded. Do you get out occasionally? What type of mental health clinics are around you? Day programs for your mom perhaps? Is she seeing a doctor regularly?

I try to think of my son’s scz as a separate “being” when he says hurtful things. I try to remember its not really him saying those things, its his illness. You should try to not let your mom’s words burst your bubbles.

You won’t know what you can do until you try. When you try things, even if you fail the first couple of times, you will learn things that will help you be more successful the next time. Restaurant work, such as dishwashing can be a good place to start. As you get more comfortable and see how things work in a restaurant, you can apply for the next job that interests you. Maybe food prep or wait staff.

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Do not take anything from your Mom personally

She is your mother who is obscured by the illness.
Try to see if you can be her guardian and make mental decision for her and get her SSI/SSD benefits.
Seek legal Aid. you qualify for free legal service since you are a low income.

She needs help and you need support during this time. Seek resources in your Area like Free mental health counseling or a Crisis team around you.

things will get better with time. Be patient and pray. do not be resentful. Everyone has a cross to bear.
accept your life and keep working toward helping your mother and helping yourself.
always keep hoping for better tomorrow.

a light part time job will help you to get out of your daily routine and take your mind off.

Keeping you in my prayers…


The hard part of living with someone with this illness is that it makes them very focused on themselves. It’s not being selfish in the traditional sense, but gosh it feels that way. I feel for you. I have a spouse with this illness and can’t imagine what it would be like if it was a parent. It’s such a different dynamic and there are expectations and roles with the parent/child relationship that would make this very hard for you. Try to care for yourself and share you thoughts with people like the ones on this forum. They will understand.