Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

In a relationship with someone with schizophrenia but still feel alone!

I am in a relationship with someone that has schizophrenia for 5 years now and it has gotten better but most days I feel like I’m alone or the only adult in this relationship and feel like I’m the only one that is going through this though i know I’m not. I have a couple of questions. Is it normal to keep repeating the same answer or question? Do they always think you are out to get them? we have so many other problems but I’m trying to hang on.

Hi @lindarod . Welcome to the forum, we understand the stresses of living with someone with schizophrenia. You can learn to use this forum to search for posts from others on specific subjects. All here have significant others / spouses / relatives / friends with this illness and have posted on how they are coping. Reading here is very valuable to help you feel not so alone in your relationship and to get ideas of how to help them and yourself. You must remember to care for yourself too. I have cared for my adult daughter since 2016 and it was very emotionally straining sometimes, though we are doing well now.

To answer your questions: Yes, it can be normal to have to answer the same questions over and over. Also, yes, it is often the case that the ill person thinks their caregivers / loved ones might be out to get them.

You are not alone: living quietly or not so quietly in homes all over the world are millions of people with this severe mental illness, many unable to care for themselves, and most not even aware of their own mental illness (called anosognosia). Caregivers, bless them all, are struggling daily to improve the lives of their loved ones with this illness. It is very hard.

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You definitely are not alone. Ive been in a long term relationship with my boyfriend for 7.5 years. He began having issues probably 4 years or so ago. I honestly don’t even know exactly because it was gradual and I really thought it was just his personality/temper combined with the atmosphere of the politically tense and cruel world. Over time I realized something was definitely wrong and he needed help. A year and a half ago it got so bad he was hospitalized and treated and diagnosed with schizophrenia. He’s significantly improved since then but still has episodes every couple months and it’s TOUGH! I’ve tried support groups but I commonly get weird reactions because I’m dating him and not “stuck in it” as opposed to how parents feel towards their kids who have been diagnosed. It’s extremely hard to be in a relationship with this disorder. I know he needs me and every day that he’s healthy I truly fall more in love with him BUT when he’s not healthy it’s scary and sad. Not knowing what I’m coming home to after work and how bad things may or may not be. Not being able to plan a week or so in advance because I don’t know if he’ll have an episode. Explaining to my parents why I’m still with him. All while supporting us financially and making sure we stay afloat in every day life. It’s stressful. It’s so frustrating to not be able to reason with them and to watch the constant cycles and how it impacts his body. It’s sad. So I feel you. I really do and you really aren’t alone. This is new to me too (I just joined this today) and I have a long way to go that’s for sure, but talking about it helps so much. And talking about it to people who actually understand too!
Check out this book if you haven’t yet. I haven’t finished it yet, but it’s extremely helpful to gain a better sense of what’s going on and how to interact with it. It’s called “I am not sick. I dont need help”.

And as for the questions, my boyfriend will repeat the same thing over and over again. Or if I ask him if he’s okay he’ll just ask if I’m okay and turn my questions right back on me. Now that he is medicated he has been far less paranoid about me. I think he knows deep down everything I’ve done and how I’m still here and I know he appreciates it even though he doesn’t always show it. But he can definitely still get nasty to me and think I’m up to no good basically. It’s not as common now but it definitely still happens. Or if I don’t give in to what he wants (like car keys) he will throw a full blown tantrum and break up with me etc. but as soon as it passes, it passes. He doesn’t even remember all of the things he does or says. I try to not take things personally in the moment (although I’m horrible at that lol) .