Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Hopeless feelings


#1

Thank you for allowing me to join. My husband was diagnosed as schizophrenia at age 43. He is now 60. Med compliant most of the time. He seems to be getting worse for the last 6 months. Now he believes that I nor his family are really us. Getting very discouraged and wondering if dementia could be setting in also. He has an upcoming appointment but I know his psychiatrist will just say “keep taking the meds.” He is also diabetic and does take medicine to help control it but his levels are getting worse. His regular doctor suggested insulin shots but he refused. Has anyone else seen this part where they think someone else is taking the place of caregivers? Thank you!


#2

We see this when our son is relapsing. He will also look at us sideways like we are someone else. He will sometimes avoid us altogether also.

Please be careful and write down what you are seeing and give to the doctor I think it is better if you skip it to the nurse first so he won’t know. I’m glad you have an appointment coming up. Best


#3

Sadly, his is a relatively common delusion. The doctor should be able to help if your husband does alright with medication.


#4

It’s called Capgras Syndrome. My son had it. With the right meds it went away.


#5

He has also began talking to himself (God) a lot more in the past month. He tells me that God talks to him 24 hours a day and tells him when to eat, sleep, go to the bathroom or whatever. “If God tells me to do something, I will do it and no one can stop me.” That’s what I hear 3 or 4 times a day. He also thinks that he, our 3 grown children, our 3 grandchildren and me are the only people on earth who are “good” and everyone else, including our son in laws, are evil. I feel like I can’t make it through another day sometimes! He has drove away all of our friends and forget about church! He used to be a pastor and we had a wonderful church family but just something about hm announcing (18 years ago) that he is the new Jesus and they were
all to trust him, well, let’s just say we no longer even go to church!


#6

Sometimes, in retrospect, I think whatever the general belief or life message was before psychosis hits, can then be twisted.

To explain: (only my experience, not anything factually concluded by professionals or those who truly “know”)

My mother is super religious. I was raised this way, and devotedly followed. Until my adult years, when she continued to deteriorate psychologically and dramatically increased her propensity towards violence (unmedicated again). When this occurred, “god” was talking through her. The Bible books of Revelation, Ezekiel, etc…with each of their prophecies was analyzed in great detail. She had charts hanging everywhere, that she had made, spending months with little or no sleep. To be honest…she was also into several other things at various times. I didn’t mind her need to backpack, to be alone (or only with me)…trips to back pack were okay. Gardening was okay. Obsessions about music or cultures were odd, but something we could live around. The religious stuff…well, she condemned anyone who didn’t jump along with her religious delusions during these periods. We were all going to die…etc.

Soooo, fast forward. I no longer have contact with my mother, and am now a mother myself. I am NOT religious. I did NOT raise our children with religion.

Our boy was dx at 7/8 and is now 14.
And for him:

It’s “aliens”.
Or the government.
OR “those g-d-liberals”. (Yes, he uses foul language at certain times.)

I really don’t think he knows what a liberal is really.
Wait…watch this…I’ll ask him, and put his direct answer down. (He’s here right now.)

Me to our son: "What is a liberal?"
Our son: “uhhhhhh…people who want equality but actually want the exact opposite. I’m probably not correct, you should google it, I think I put some sass in there.”

And said with absolute seriousness.
(I told him someone wanted to know, and I didn’t know what to say.)

My point: he was raised with Dad’s belief of aliens and with my resistance to religion. I know nothing of politics, and Dad is super quiet too, so as far as I know, very little dialog on this subject.

In our house? It’s Hillary Clinton, aliens, and liberals.

I NEVER know what to respond, so there really aren’t any arguments about this. I just lightly listen…just as when it’s any other belief.


#7

I’m so sorry. That must especially be tough.


#8

Could be. My adult son is paranoid sz and my mom has Alzheimer Dementia. Son’s pdoc suggested about a year or two ago that there appears to be an increased chance for early onset AD in his future.

The inability to identify close family is a warning sign for sure, IMHO. Ask about a neuropsych eval ASAP. Wishing you the best.


#9

Unfortunately religious ideations are very common. My son also has some strange ideas. We balance that out with lets see what the Bible has to say about that “message” if it is too intense. It gets scary when the messages have been very dogmatic. Not in line with God’s message at all. Mostly though they have mellowed and he while he questions his “role” he is not judgmental of others.


#10

As someone has already said, the name for the disorder in which a person thinks others are impostors is “Capgras Syndrome.”

Here’s some information about it from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capgras_delusion.

"Capgras delusion is a psychiatric disorder in which a person holds a delusion that a friend, spouse, parent, or other close family member (or pet) has been replaced by an identical impostor. The Capgras delusion is classified as a delusional misidentification syndrome, a class of delusional beliefs that involves the misidentification of people, places, or objects. It can occur in acute, transient, or chronic forms. Cases in which patients hold the belief that time has been “warped” or “substituted” have also been reported.

The delusion most commonly occurs in patients diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, but has also been seen in patients suffering from brain injur] and dementia. It presents often in individuals with a neurodegenerative disease, particularly at an older age. It has also been reported as occurring in association with diabetes, hypothyroidism, and migraine attacks. In one isolated case, the Capgras delusion was temporarily induced in a healthy subject by the drug ketamine. It occurs more frequently in females, with a female:male ratio of approximately 3:2."

There’s lots more info after this on that web page. Hope helpful.


#11

Thank you so much for that info. I read it, as well as several others, and while it was pretty scary, it also explained so much for me! I seriously think that is the most helpful article I’ve read in eighteen years, as far as helping me to understand!


#12

Squid, your son seems so honest and sweet.


#13

He is…very much.

He asked for this picture years ago, while in the midst of med adjustments and a serious depressive/agitated state. Wow…those were dark days.

He wanted a picture of me holding him, so he could remember that it’s “real”.

That my hugs are real.

Wow…
I forgot about this. Found the photo just the other day while cleaning the files.


#14

The “then” and “now” photos really show HUGE improvements for him. It shows in his eyes. Love the new pic of him smiling😀.

Yes. Much better place these days. Just downloaded his writing to check it out. (Couldn’t see on the screen)