Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Encouraging words to my husband


#1

My husband was moved to the chronic unit. People have been there 3 to 6 months…wow…

So this is my dilemma. He is being a bear- so grumpy and angry. He didn’t want to see me today but has said I can come tomorrow. I found out he’s refusing groups… only the antidepressant… seems to be no therapy. So I need to.somehow convince him to do SOMETHING. All he’s doing is sitting and thinking… which probably is strengthening his delusions. I also need for him to put me on the list to talk to his dr.

I need to somehow say this so he hears me, given he has no insight. I could reflect his feelings “I am hearing you say”…" what would you like to see happen?" But that’s all I have.

Ideas?


#2

First, you need to speak with nurses or doctors. Speak to them to give them actual medicine for schizophrenia (or antipsychotics), if not he’s never going to get out of there with simple antidepressants. Also tell them to take him to group regardless of his wishes. Many patients are non-compliant when it comes to this, but that has never meant that they don’t get to attend. In fact, not attending increases their time in there because it shows that they cannot function around people in society once they would hypothetically get out of the hospital. You have to let him know and make this clear to him. “If you don’t take the medicine that they give you, if you don’t go to group, you WILL NOT get out. You could be in there for a year. Now it’s your choice if you want to get better and out of that place. I’m doing my part, but you have to do yours.” I had to say a similar thing to my fiancé because he just got court-ordered to stay there for a period of 90 days and his mother signed the papers. Tomorrow I will be speaking with his doctor to see what medications they can put him on and the treatment for the following months. That asides, I’ve heard Invega Sustenna is used for non-compliant patients who do not want to take their meds. It’s an injection they give them monthly, but it can work to getting there where they need to be and maybe they’ll realize that they do have a problem and start taking the medications like they need to and going to therapy. I will suggest that. Nothing is more horrible than being detained agaisnt your own wishes, especially when one believes they have done nothing wrong. You need to use that fear against him to pull him out of the state that he is and talk some sense to him in order for him to, A) get better and B) get out of the hospital faster. Use that as something to drive him to take the medicine and cooperate within the facility and with you.


#3

If you’re looking for words of affirmation and ways to understand him, try saying:

  • “I get that.”
  • “I understand.”
  • “I can see where you’re coming from.”
  • “Would you mind explaining that to me a little bit more?”
  • “I didn’t know that.”
  • “I find that interesting.”
  • “What do you think of ___?”
  • “That’s great!”
  • “Wow!”
  • “Nice!”
  • “I’m really proud of you and your progress.”
  • “How do you do that?”
  • “I love the way you ___.”
  • “You always bring a smile to face.”
  • “You’re so funny.”
  • “I miss these conversations, I miss you.”
  • “It makes me happy when I remember the time when went to/when we did ____.”
  • “You’ve been through so much, you’re really strong. Don’t give up.”
  • “I’m here for you if you need anything.”
  • “I believe you.”
  • “I believe in you.”
  • “I am thankful that you ____.”

The thing is, you have to engage him a conversation about literally anything and follow his train of thought. Let him do most of the talking and follow along with whatever he’s saying while remaining receptive to his dialogue/monologue. Does he like to write? Try suggesting writing as a way of release and where he can put down his thoughts, mine does that a lot. He read to me a speech of four pages long and he got agitated, but I heard him, I gave him time to breathe, and I gave feedback because I knew how important that was to him. You need to find a way to appeal to whatever they’re saying and their situation, while still remaining honest and sprinkling sugar on it. Love, support, honesty, and persistence will get you and him to where you need to be. Remind him that you love him as well, he may not want to hear it right now, but deep down it still feels nice to hear it than to not hear it at all.


#4

Thanks Dr! Unfortunately, he has not given the hospital permission to speak with me, and since he went in voluntarily- and to my knowledge, that has not changed- he can refuse medication. The antidepressants are a miracle at all, as he is staunchly anti medication. To my knowledge he has no SZ diagnosis UNLESS that’s why he told me “you don’t need to know about my treatment”. Since you can simply check off the DSM as a list for him, maybe the staff finally saw that. I know they talked with him about delusions at some hospitalization. It’s like they are doing it all wrong for him. They need to read the Dr. Amador stuff bcz they might actually reach him!

He’d do individual therapy, but he’s a hard nut since he’s borderline. I somehow need to get some therapy to happen. I guess I’ll just see when I get there. The groups he’s not attending he says are hearing people’s sob stories; he doesn’t get anything out of it and it’s a violation of his privacy.

I love the affirmations! He might act like a jerk but I know he soaks them in.


#5

Anytime. Go to the hospital yourself, ask to speak with a doctor. Since you’re his wife you legally have the right to know what’s going on with him. If they tell you, “No,” which I doubt it, you can go to court and say that your husband is mentally unfit and unable to take care of himself, that way they’ll make you the primary caretaker and you’d have access to everything. Antipsychotics are used to treat BPD, so you can still ask for those.


#6

I’m sorry, that’s not true. Spouses don’t have the right to medical records of the spouse.

And, assuming this is the United States, you must apply to the court for Guadianship or conservatorship, it’s not implied because you’re married.

I agree, I hate group, and would refuse to go. There were times, many times in hospital I didn’t know my own diagnosis, didn’t go to group. Not the end of the world. I’d say be patient, and it would be helpful for both of you most likely if he’d sign a release so you could speak to the clinicians as a team. I know I began to resent everyone around me when a clinician would say things like ’ well your family says…’. It’s a screwed up system.


#7

Oh, I apologize, I always thought it was that way since my aunt has schizophrenia and her husband always had access to her records. I also thought that because it applies when pulling the plug on a family member. Funny thing though, my fiancé’s mom and I are allowed to speak with his doctors and ask about treatment or any other concerns.

@Sadwife Here’s some information on it.


#8

The patient must sign a release, thank you for the hippa article.


#9

No problem at all and thank you for the correction once again, I sincerely did not know.


#10

Ok. I’m on my way. Nervous at the reception I’m likely to get.


#11

Good luck, I hope it goes well!!! :smile:


#12

That is so nice, Doctor. Thanks!

Went ok. Nurse is going to talk to Dr about depression and irritability. No signs of delusions to them.

On a positive note, he said as I was leaving " I keep forgetting, I’ll sign that release tomorrow."

We shall see.


#13

You’re welcome and that’s great!! It seems like he’s finally warming up to you. The process takes time, trust me, just hang in there and don’t give up hope.