Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Delusions Conspiracy Military Voices Mind Control

How do I cope with my fiance who is completely delusional now? I thought he had strange ideas because he is alcoholic and often when drunk he would say he was an archangel. He became increasingly bizarre and was convinced that I was Judas Iscariot and that I must be killed before I could kill him again. He became very violent and was arrested and sentenced to 8 months prison for attacking me. He spent the time in a secure psychiatric hospital, when he came out he seemed completely normal, so after several months we restarted living together. But unknown to me he stopped taking his treatment, and started having delusions again. Now he thinks that while he was in prison and the hospital the army implanted things in his head to steal his thoughts and control his mind. He thinks he is spied upon daily by planes that pass over our town (there is an airport nearby) He thinks that the president has ordered that he be followed everywhere by agents in big cars. If he sees a film the next day the plot is incorporated in his fantasy. What on earth can I do? I told him I believe that HE believes what he says, but that I cannot. I tried once pretending to believe him when he said he had discovered a new planet. He nearly drove me insane with hours of details on how he had found it and how he visits it by looking into a bright lightbulb. He has left me now (for the 100th time at least) because he says if I loved him I would believe him. He always comes back, and I always hope that this time he will get better, but he just gets worse. I am at the end of my tether. He has no-one else, his family have all turned their backs on him, and he has no real friends. The only people he talks to are the alcoholics who beg in the streets, and of course they tell him what he wants to hear because he buys alcohol for them. He spends all of his invalidity pension each month within 2 days on getting drunk and scratch cards. Writes cheques with no money to back them up, has debts everywhere. I usually sort it out for him but my health is not good now and I really don’t think I can carry on picking up the pieces when he won’t make any effort to get the right treatment, nor to take the medication prescribed. He doesn’t keep his appointments with the psychiatrist and insists he is not alcoholic or schizophrene. Is there any hope that things will get better? He has just spent one month in a psychiatric hospital, he came out three weeks ago but seems worse than ever. He hears voices and has animated disputes with “them” My GP said the only way to get any peace is to agree with him when he is delusional, no matter how ridiculous I think it is. But I can’t, I’ve tried that and I can’t see how that can be helpful for either of us. How do other people cope? Please help me? I don’t want to let him down, but I don’t see how I can spend the rest of my life like this. We have been together for 12 years, he has been in hospital at least a dozen times and attempted suicide 5 times. He blames me for everything, even though his troubles date from at least 20 years ago. Nothing is ever his fault, it’s me, the army, the police or the government. Has anyone ever lived normally again after believing all that? Please help me to see clearly. I just don’t know what to do.

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Oh honey, what an awful situation. This seems dangerous for you. I know he is a good man, but if you put yourself at risk and then he hurts/kills you, then you are gone and he has lost you as his support. Is it possible to contact his doctor to let them know what is going on? It sounds like he might need inpatient treatment at this time. Please find a therapist for you, this is a lot to deal with. Personally, I think you should have a separate place to live, so you can keep yourself safe when he is delusional. I agree that you shouldn’t argue with them when they are delusional. I was told to say, “Is there anything I can do to help you feel safe?” My family member is my 15 year old son, not my fiance, so I don’t know if it would be the same advice. Do you have family to talk to? I’m praying for you. Write again, please.

Thank you for your concern. I feel very alone with this situation. We have the same GP and he always asks me how my fiance is coping and I always tell him everything. I also attended all of his previous appointments with his psychiatrist and I was very involved with his care. He has been an in patient many times since I have known him (and before, but I wasn’t aware when I fell in love with him) His last stay of 4 weeks ended just three weeks ago. I know he needs to be hospitalized again, but he won’t consent as he insists now that he is not sick and they are just using him for their experiments. I don’t have anyone to talk to. He cut me off from all of my friends years ago and my children live far away and I don’t want to worry them. We do have separate places to live, but when he is alone he takes overdoses with alcohol and has nearly died several times. He goes to the police regularly to try to get people arrested , the president, the army, the procurer everyone that he thinks is conspiring against him. Your problem is with your son, but I have to say I think I feel as responsible for my fiance as you do for your son. I feel I need to try to protect him and guide him. My feelings for him as my partner have almost gone. I love him deeply but it is more like the feeling I have for my children now. I think you are right I probably need to see someone to help me through this. I know I am in a dangerous situation, but I cannot contemplate abandoning him any more than I would if he were my child. He insults me and criticises me and says I do nothing for him. But I do everything I can. The problem now is that I have fibromalgia and am feeling exhausted most of the time and suffer great pain despite my treatment. Stress makes my illness a lot worse. I am older than him and worry about what will become of him if I die before he does. I just wish I was stronger physically and mentally so that I could help him more. We were so happy before, and between his delusional periods we still have a good life. The problem now is that those periods are very rare and very short. He sits at the table in the kitchen al day smoking cigarettes and talking to his voices. Or he spends hours deciphering codes on every scrap of paper he can find, then he “posts"them through our letter box into the street. I think he needs to understand that all of this behaviour is due to illness, so I asked him to watch the film “A beautiful mind” with me, starring Russel Crowe. I thought it would help him to know that even with his illness he could still achieve something with his life. At the end of the film he turned to me and said “You see? They did exactly the same thing to him that they are doing to me. They wanted him to think he was imagining it all” So he had not understood at all. He is interested in absolutely nothing. I tried to get him interested in several hobbies but nothing works. I am an avid collector of all sorts of things, vintage jewellery, crystals and minerals, porcelaine, vintage dolls, perfume bottles etc, and that gives me great pleasure, arranging, cataloguing, learning the origin of each item. He started collecting watches and miniature cars. He has literally hundreds now but after he has bought them he leaves them on the carpet all over his appartement. I bought him several books on cars and watches. He doesn’t open them. He has display cabinets to keep his collection safely on shelves but he doesn’t touch the items after he has bought them. They are just piled up everywhere. He is obsessed by religion, but his ideas are all muddled up. I always thought that with the correct treatment he could live a normal life, but now I don’t think that will ever happen, because as soon as a treatment works he thinks he is cured and he stops taking it. He has injections now, but on their own they are not sufficient and he has stopped taking the tablets, and now he is living in his fantasy world again. You were told to ask your son what you could do to make him feel safe. My fiance doesn’t feel that he is in danger physically so that won’t serve a useful purpose with him. I have said " What can I do to help you?” He replies that I can be his witness to all of his conspiracy theories. He wanted me to go to the police to say I had witnessed the spy-planes over our town, following him every day. It’s true I saw the trails in the sky of several planes but there is no way I can go to the police to say that is proof that the army are spying on him. So in his eyes I am in on the conspiracy. I can’t see a way out. Thank you for your prayers. I was a very strong believer for most of my life, but my life with my fiance has taken away my faith, now I find it impossible to believe in anything I can’t see with my own eyes. I hope that your son responds well to his treatment. It’a a horrible thing to see someone you love in the grip of this illness. Take care

I’m so sorry to read of your situation. Your friend sounds very sick. He may do better on another medication, but the process of finding that medication and a way to keep him on it can be very difficult. The only way that was possible with my son was because I sought guardianship and he eventually came to an understanding (at least for now) that staying on his meds is the ONE non-negotiable.

Given what sounds like his very flawed decision-making, your friend may in fact need a guardian, but I think it would be very difficult to be awarded guardianship of a fiance, as well as being a heavy burden for you and not the relationship I expect you want with him.

My input is that you for now adjust how you relate to him, not as a fiance, but as an advocate with his best interests in mind, but also with an understanding that your relationship may never be what it once was, and that you need to live a satisfying life yourself. I know that is difficult to hear, and also difficult to implement.

I have a fiancé like that too. Put in a hospital, make sure he stays on his meds and check every day that he does, I watch mine take his pills diurnally and swallow it. And ban the alcohol.