Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

How to handle agitated scz bf


#1

I have been dating a guy with paranoid schizophrenia for a few months. He has been stable and in remission for several years. Recently he moved into an apt totally completely on his own for the first time. (That is outside the safety net of a transitional/independent living environment) Since then, he has become increasingly more withdrawn from me, as he is feeling overwhelmed with the move and how to manage it all. Having a routine helps him function, and he is struggling to establish a new routine since the move.

Lately, certain things I say or do will upset him out of the blue, that never bothered him before. He becomes angry or refuses to speak to me. He seems erratic and agitated much of the time, and anything I say seems to be the wrong thing, or upsets him further. Today I saw him in a state I’ve never seen before, where he was continually muttering to himself under his breath. He said he had not slept at all, and I am concerned the voices are back again. He has always stuck with his meds in the past, a strict schedule, and holds down a full time job. How can I keep from unintentionally exacerbating this situation further, as he tries to readjust to his new living situation?


#2

Hi there. Stress is the worst thing for my son. He’s 24 and lives at home at this point. I can’t imagine the stress he would be under trying to manage an apartment and job. Your boyfriend is trying so hard to do all the things “everyone” else does, and sounds like he’s been doing pretty well up to this point. They can have relapses or need med adjustments from time to time. It does sound like things are ramping up for him right now. When my son gets stressed I can definitely tell in his mood. He gets real agitated. That’s the first sign for him that I need to keep an eye on things. I don’t think he can help it. I try to take the big stresses off his plate or help him through a few things that seem to be causing stress. Maybe you could help him manage a few things at home, if you think that would help. But really, I think the best advice anyone could give is for him to see his doctor and maybe he/she will change his meds. He does sound fairly high functioning and I love to see people with this awful illness trying to be independent and doing so well. Good luck to you both!


#3

I’m thinking, take some time and space for yourself while he goes through these stresses.

If he needs better medical treatment, hopefully he will seek it and has the time and resources to attain it. He needs to sleep, eat well, manage stress. These are not things you can do for him, but you can do them for yourself and invite him to healthy meals or maybe for a walk or other positive activity you both enjoy together.

If I were around someone who was becoming increasingly agitated, I would leave unless I thought they were in immediate need of medical help.


#4

Thank you for your advice, I’ve been unsure on what to do, and definitely don’t want to make it more difficult for him. It seems like just me being around him right now is making it harder for him to focus on managing his life. And I don’t want to cause undue pressure on him. I told him I’m here for him if he needs, and I still stand by him, but I understand if he needs time and space to figure it all out, I understand.