Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Feeling really lost and confused

Lately, things have been going well. At least it seemed that way. For a month or more, things seemed legitimately okay. My husband is still unmedicated, but we’ve been going out and doing activities fairly frequently as a family. We would take our daughter to restaurants and grocery shopping and other little errands, and we’d come home tired but mostly feeling well from spending quality time together.

Then tonight, I found a message that my husband had initiated to a woman that seemed rather flirtatious. In confronting him, I remained vague and simply said that he knew what he did and to put a stop to it (He has a history of flirting with women outside of the relationship, even going so far as to download dating apps and the like). He made a minor admission of guilt, saying “if you want me to leave, I’ll leave” meanwhile I never said anything of the sort. He maintained his innocence the whole time. Then I read the message to him and he claimed he had no idea where it came from and he had no recollection of sending it (within the last 24 hours, mind you). Then he cried and said “sorry for being a shitty person; I’m doing things I can’t even remember doing; I wish you’d never fallen in love with me” etc. My only issue with this is that I can’t believe if he’s genuine or not. I don’t know if he deliberately sent the message or not. I don’t know if he’s not remembering things due to alcohol, his mental illness, or a combination of both. I suggested he stop drinking and seek help for his mental illness, and I’m hoping this incident can be an eye opener if he truly has no recollection of what he did. I can’t even bring myself to be mad or upset over it, I’m just feeling a whirlwind and a little overwhelmed. I’m not sure what to think.

I’m so thankful for this outlet to talk about sz related issues. Any kind comments are much appreciated. Much love to all of you. :two_hearts:

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Never let him use illness as an excuse for bad behavior.


I don’t know if that’s what he’s doing. I’m not sure if he is genuine or not in saying he “doesn’t remember”. Speaking to him didn’t give me any more clarity and left me literally up until 3 am anxiously trying to sort through my feelings and getting up with our daughter at 8. I want to have patience and compassion but I don’t have time for this when it’s interrupting and interfering with me taking care of my kid. And that’s just assuming he’s genuine! I don’t want to be taken advantage of or made to be a fool. I can’t pick up on any sincerity, as much as I want to believe he truly is having some sort of memory loss episode.

So far it hasn’t been anything I can’t handle. For the most part, the flirtatious shit has stopped. Until seeing his latest message, of course. At some point, he’ll break the camels back. I’m not there yet - I still find value in the relationship. I’ve encouraged him to stop drinking and also encouraged treatment. It’s not anything I can force, and he’ll have to realize on his own that he needs treatment. He’s very lucid (I question the sz diagnosis) so I know he’s capable of realizing he needs help.

Either way, I guess we’ll see what happens.

You didn’t say how much he drinks or how long he has been drinking but excessive drinking can cause a lapse of memory.

In my sons case, he can out drink all of us and still walk and talk. However, he also becomes very delusional. Most of what he remembers, but not all.
You would be the best judge of what is going on in your relationship, but I would encourage attending some support groups for both drinking and mental illness to try to get a handle on what to do next. But do remember as @Vallpen said, never let him use sz as an excuse for bad behavior.
Hope for the best for you.

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It certainly is confusing for both you and him if he isn’t sure at the time if you are real and later if what he did was real. We can’t know for sure how they mentally change from one perspective to the other. I don’t have a solid answer for you but I can say you are not alone. This entire condition has knocked my family for a loop and I’m sure it has for others as well. If you wanted to be assertive, you could contact anyone who replies to him and let them know he’s married. You could also try to delete his apps. As silly as this sounds, he might not remember uploading them if you delete them. Following behind them can be more energy draining than chasing a room full of toddlers but we can’t give up on them because they are ruled by their disorder. Sending positive thoughts and a cyberhug.

If I were you, I would most certainly question that diagnoses as well. It has been my experience with both my Father and Husband that flirting was not on the list of symptoms. I also have noticed reading on this forum, that I have not read anything like that from other caregivers as well. People with SZ isloate themselves from others. They have a tendency to be home bound or locked in their room away from people including their own family, not in bars drinking. You haven’t listed any other symptoms other than flirting on this post, is he displaying bizarre behavior? Is he delusional or experiencing hallucinations?