Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Losing hope in a future

I’m losing hope that my sister will ever get better and I’m nearly suicidal at the thought of “looking after” her for the rest of my life.
I’m still single and I want to live but I feel that I can’t do that because she’s so greedy for my time and attention.
I sometimes feel like killing myself because I can’t face the rest of my life listening to her madness and delusions.
I’m drained and exhausted and I see no way out.
How can she get dressed and look pretty every day, perfect, while I look like a mess? She dumps all her delusions onto me and it drains me and is slowly sending me crazy.
Does anyone ever recover from this bastard of an illness?
I feel so trapped.


This is a terrible terrible illness and it is very very draining on caregivers and family who try try try their hardest to help their loved one. It makes me very sad to know you are being worn down again and again. I do hope that you can take care of yourself and find some peace for yourself, and that you don’t make any attempt to hurt yourself.

I was wearing down to nothing myself when luckily several factors came together to get my daughter again arrested, hospitalized and ordered onto medicine. I couldn’t have planned the situation that saved our lives, but I took advantage of each separate incident to come to the best result. There is hope that your sister can get help, I know only because my daughter is doing well now: taking her medicine monthly, working as a housekeeper/cleaner, being pleasant to be around.

I do totally understand the feeling you have of being trapped. Yes, this illness traps us all into situations and lives we never expected to lead.

Hang in there, find some space for yourself, and try to have hope.


Thank you oldladyblue. I feel like you understand my situation perfectly. Like, you I think it’ll take an intervention from God for a situation to arise that’ll save our mental health and basically our lives.

It’s so good to hear of a story of hope. I’m so glad that your daughter is working and is pleasant to be around. It’s just so good to hear a positive story like this one.
THank you for giving me some hope and for being honest about your own situation.
Love, hermana80


I really feel for you and send you lots of love. I know how you feel, I have at times felt desperate about my daughter and if this is going to carry on for the rest of my life. The only way I’ve been able to keep my own sanity is to set boundaries. I don’t answer the phone each time any more. I encourage her to speak to one of her mental health team or to call a helpline if she wants to discuss delusions etc. It took me a few years to be able to set boundaries but it does help. Remember that while you love your sister you are not responsible for her and you deserve to be able to lead your own life. You can provide support but also leave space and time for yourself!! I know it’s easier said than done but you don’t want the stress to make you unwell too! Look after yourself , you deserve to be happy


I think what I learned in training in a carer course .to explore the difference between your sister expectations and your own expectations as a carer. To consider our own journey of living with and beyond the mental health problems (a dreaded illness agree ) of your sister hope nf optimism that recovery is possible the chime model (leaky et al 2011)


You have expressed what many of us has felt at one time or another. I have felt suicidal about feeling held prisoner by my adult daughter. This is not something you can handle on your own. You need to have your own therapy, your own caregiver support group, a church community if you are religious, a group of friends, a best friend, an outlet, an interest, etc. Basically you need a village! I actively sought as many connections as I could where I could openly share my challenges in taking care of my daughter and her mental illness challenges. Ask for help. Seek help. Help will come. When you isolate with the madness, your world becomes very small. But when you reach out to others, your world will expand. The challenges will still be there, but you won’t be alone.


I’ve been there so many times. I kept trying to ask for help, but nobody knew how to help me. My close family broke apart because everyone turned their backs instead of digging in and helping me with any type of support, and in turn, I became angry with them. Nobody understands unless they live it.

Now, my family is closer and accepting of him and his “idiosyncrasies” - the shock has worn off and he has grown older. It took years ad years of testing boundaries to get where we are now. And tons of mutual respect. I’m always exhausted but I too have become older, and a bit wiser. Recover? Hmmm… not sure he will ever recover but compared to four years ago, heck yes, things are better.


Thank you, Katee for your answer. It somehow addressed me directly… I hope it also helps the author of the post. I am taking care of my 16 year old daughter who has recently been diagnosed… I am learning to find help, not to be alone. I joined a local support group of parents having children with disabilities. I think this is already a step forward for me…


Thank you Mia. It helps me know that my words helped you. Joining the support group is definitely a great step forward. Keep reaching out. Support is there. You are not alone.

Kate xoxo

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Yes, there is hope and miracles do exist. I am not technically a religious person, but early Sunday School in my life decades ago, made my belief in a higher power lifelong. For awhile, when my daughter was taken over by her voices, I felt betrayed, that God had deserted us. I was in a dark place and sinking lower into the abyss of hopelessness. But shared stories at NAMI meetings and on this site taught me to be ready to act in any situation presented where perhaps a change could occur for the better. I was sooooo scared sometimes to “do the wrong thing” but in trying to handle this horrible horrible illness for a loved one, the truth is that the only wrong thing is to do nothing at all.

I suggest that you need to take better care of yourself while you try to care for your sister, small things to make yourself feel better. Or make a clean break for yourself: I went to AZ to see my sister for a week leaving my psychotic daughter and alcoholic husband behind with the dogs, for my OWN sanity. The plane fare was suddenly $83 round trip if I left the next day. I’d been shopping and dreaming with no real hopes of being able to get away, and suddenly there was a sale, and the price was no longer $600, which I couldn’t afford. But $83 I could pay! Was it wrong to leave her without any explanation? Maybe… but I went anyway. And everything was just the same when I got back home. Except I was refreshed and could continue the fight.



Yeah, I’m on the lookout for a way to break free from her. She does nothing all day. She’s basically like a child in a 35 year old’s body. I’m 40, no job, no husband, no kids. I just look out for her iwth my other sister. I’ve depression as well.

Sometimes I feel like God has really abandoned us, me. SOmetimes I think she’s a total bitch and just taking out all her frustrations on me. I don’t know where the illness ends and she begins. I see no hope. I wish I could. But I see none, not at the minute anyway.

It’s the total abandonment by God which is the hardest to handle.

I wish that he would just come and tell me what to do because I don’t think I’m doing the right things.

This is the worst illness in the world and nobody talks about it. There’s no adverts on the news the way cancer has all the ads. There’s no help for carers and no help for victims of it except for drugs. I wish I were dead sometimes. I really do. All I see in my future is her selfish face talking a load of crap delusions over and over and over and over again and me and my sister walking on egg shells around her.

Like, where is the life for us? Is there a God? Like, really, is there? I don’t know anymore


:smiling_face_with_three_hearts: thank you

I wish there was something to make you feel better, I understand the hopeless and Godless feelings for sure, as I was there in the darkest times. It is a horrible horrible illness and you are right that almost no one ever talks about it. That’s why NAMI and this site are so valuable. Try to take some time for yourself whenever you can.

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Yes there is a very personable God who is the only one who deeply understands what you are going through and He cares for you! Read the Bible starting with John. Faith is the only thing that brings me joy and peace about my 33 yr old son. God will not abandon you. After years of praying and believing, my son who has been in a cycle of aggression, drugs, homelessness, and jail… lost on the streets and hospitalization… is completing 16 months in Teen Challenge. He has trained his mind through this awesome program to depend on the promises from the Bible along with taking his meds to retrain his approach to life. Your life can be the best example for others to follow. Faith is a powerful tool that makes all the difference! We can do this together… because we can do all things through Jesus Christ who strengths us!

Oh yes! God loves and cares for each and every one of us and although I believe in miracles, disorders of the mind have been around for centuries. I know that one day my son will be whole and whether that’s in my lifetime or not, I choose not to worry. I have no other children, one brother who couldn’t deal with this if his life depended on it (just the way he was “built”) and my Mom (who at 88 wouldn’t be able to deal with him either. So its me. You need to build yourself a support system and that might provide encouragement just when you need it. I have friends and neighbors who understand the situation but most people have something crappy going on in their lives as well. Its just SZ is very hard to comprehend and until my parents really learned enough about it, they thought it was my parenting skills. Not! I’m still parenting now and will until I can no longer. You said your sister gets dressed everyday and looks so pretty. Is there a chance of you going with her somewhere to pamper yourselves - especially you? Nothing too drastic but maybe a pedicure together? Those are soooo relaxing. Find those friends who have fallen by the wayside and call them just to talk - without bringing up your sister. If they ask, so be it. I realized that I had been “dumping” on a friend of mine and I called to apologize. She assured me that we all need each other - if only to talk. So, while I wish my life had taken a different turn, I have learned a lot from this mess and I’ve learned to research and stand up for my son and myself when need be. I wish you all the best and know that we’re “out here” and you are not alone with this. Take care of yourself and keep posting! Do not let this crap win! :palm_tree:

Thanks everyone. She’s a bitch. That’s all. And she’s playing me and my sister. She doesn’t want us to do anything with our lives, just be on call for her 24/7.
I’ve had enough. I don’t know how many times I’ve said this on this site but tomorrow I’m phoning her case worker and telling him I’m going to get a restraining order on her. She dumps all her shit on us, all the time. I never think about myself anymore - it’s ALL about her and her needs. She punishes me when I put myself first.
She’s a narcissist. And I’ve had enough. I can’t take it anymore. I want to kill myself just to get away from her.