Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Feeling guilty for wanting to leave

I have been with my husband for a little over 20 years, married for 13. We have an 11 year old son. My husband was diagnosed with SZ 3.5 years ago and it has been a hard road. He has been in the Pschy ward 4 times and one of those times he was gone for 5 months. The last time was a horror show…he was arrested for criminal mischief. I came home to the cops at my house and senior services for my mother inlaw who is diagnosed with dementia. Since we are living in my mother inlaws house, my sister forbade my husband from coming back to the house. She is the POA over my mother inlaw and she has say over her care. So my husband is now living in a hotel. My sister inlaw is not kicking me and my son out of the house but we have to move soon as she will be selling the house to pay for my mother inlaws care.

I am not mad at my husband, but his lack of listening to me has got me upset. I tried having him committed earlier in the week and of course he put on the master performance and they released him only to be arrested a few days later. He literally has no insight into his illness. He is putting my me and my son thru hell and I honestly feel that I cannot put my son thru this anymore. I feel that I need to put my foot down and end the madness. The biggest problem I have is my son and his unconditional love for his father, which is great, but I know if I separate from him my son will never forgive me.

I can’t have my husband live with me and my son and continue the same behavior. I can’t keep putting my son thru this. He acts like it’s not bothering him but I know that he has fear over the “not knowing” whether if his Dad is well or not. I am trying to hold down a job to support my family and it is becoming harder and harder as there are days my son is sick and I have to stay home with him which prevents me from being paid.

My husband seriously blind sided me this last time…I tried to have him committed because I thought he was in the beginning stages of a psychotic episode when he was actually in the middle of it. That is how well he hid it from me. And this isn’t the first time I have had the police at my house because of him. When he was committed 2 years ago and didn’t come out for 5 months, Child Services came to my house to make sure my son had a safe environment, which he does. I told them that when my son is home, I am home, and that’s the truth. They were there because they were concerned over my husbands mental state. It was completely devastating to me to have child services at my house. My husband has not been a threat to anyone in the house.

I had a full time job at night that originally started out part time. I worked real hard to get the “full time” status which provided insurance for my husband and my son. After 3 months, he went off the deep end and I had to go back to days at “part time”. I recently was told that I was next in line to become a manager for a department in my store, which I probably won’t now because I had to call out so many times over the last month because of my son being sick and not having anyone to leave him with. I feel like he is holding me back when all I want to do is support my family.

So now, I just want to move on. I will always be there for him because he is the father of my child but I don’t think he will see it that way. And because he hides his illness so well, he will have to deal with my son never being there unless I am there until he gets older. I know that won’t sit well with him. But my son comes first. I would love to just part on friendly terms and have my son visit him a few times a week after school/work, but I know that is too much to ask.
Has anyone else dealt with this and if so, any advice/support would be helpful.

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Ginger, my heart goes out to you and you have to protect your son and explain in a way that doesn’t demonize your husband and I don’t think you would do that anyway. That is the way it is and if the courts step in, you don’t have a choice.

I’ll let someone else who has a similar experience chime in but I did want to reach out to you. You are not alone.

People get divorced all the time. Your husband’s illness is impacting your ability to make a living and have a safe place for you and your son to live.

Your son can still have a good relationship with his father.

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