Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

My Crazy Ex Husband

My sz ex-husband came to visit me for a few days last week. I hadn’t seen him in over 2 years, although we spoke on the phone a lot. When he first got here, he was so manic. He recognized it in himself. Called it crazy, but could not control it. It made me wonder if his 2nd diagnosis of Bipolar was more accurate than paranoid sz, his original diagnosis.

Some paranoia is still there. He ranted a little about his usual suspects; the Government,; a certain TV personality; a friend from college. But he wasn’t too preoccupied with it. Her did manage to travel here to the city, and went out and did errands here on his own.

Do you see mania with your loved one’s sz?

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In the beginning and once before a psychotic break. Days without sleeping and constant “trying to figure out what is going on”. The second hospitalization also gave a secondary dx of bipolar. Sometimes, and forgive me if I offend, I think “crazy” covers it best.


Yes, I’ve seen it in my daughter a lot in the past 3 years. Right now, since she is on medication for the 2nd month, she is pretty evened out, no highs/lows, no voices, no paranoia.

However, for most of the past 3 years unmedicated she seemed to cycle from quiet to loud and crazy over a two week period. When quiet was on she stayed home, watched tv, and talked quietly to voices. When loud was on, she went out, yelled at buildings and neighbors, talked herself hoarse to her voices and kept on talking, was antagonistic to myself and my husband for no reason. And seemed to never run out of energy.

She’s had 5 diagnoses, one of them was bi-polar, two were sz, one was delusional disorder, and the original “unspecified” psychosis.

I have heard others say that lack of sleep in their loved one is a big marker for increased psychosis or undesired behavior, whatever that looks like.

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You are all correct about the mania preceding an episode of psychosis. I forgot about that. We have not lived together for years.
Still, this was different, and he seems ok when we’ve talked on the phone since. He says it’s because.he quit drinking (Thank God) and his chemistry was off. Who knows?
I’m not sure if he is taking meds or not, but he did mention have no a psychiatrist appointment. Frankly, I am relieved that I don’t have to worry about that anymore. He is on his own there.

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While its a little off the subject, my apologies, my husband and I are still trying to figure out what exactly is going on with our friend’s wife who we see regularly. Her bipolar is so extreme, that her sister, who is diagnosed with bipolar, believes its much more than bipolar. She told us she thought her sister had scz. The friend’s wife has delusions and by paying attention, we have noticed that she is always “working” some sort of delusion. There are recurring delusions, usually just one is featured at a time.

She had 4 big episodes last year each one was preceded by a period of mania. But they aren’t like my son’s episodes. When he has an episode it involved the voices ramping up. We know this because he yells at us to stop tormenting him. He tried sleeping with ear plugs to block out the voices- there were earplugs scattered all over his bedroom when he moved out. He would approach our house and begin screaming at our windows in the middle of the night because he believed we were yelling at him.

When this woman has an episode, she isn’t yelling at voices. She is caught up in one of her delusions. Her worst delusion is when she believes her husband is cheating on her. She will totally lose it, begin calling women and accusing them of sleeping with her husband. She demands that he leaves their home - throws his clothes out in front of their kids while screaming and crying.

She will talk rationally with him and he says in mid-conversation she will shift back into accusations. He says her face and expression changes right before it happens.

We have noticed that in the periods of time between episodes, she is never quite “right”. She is always focused on some sort of delusion.

Maybe schizoaffective ?

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A doctor can diagnose. You can look up the DSM-5 criteria for different disorders, but even then, I often find it challenging for persons who are not clearly one thing or another. There is talk about changing some of the DSM-5 criteria. While all of us probably want a diagnosis, getting treatment for the symptoms, which can cross between diagnoses, is more important. And yet, the diagnosis CAN have a part in the treatment. We have had different diagnoses for our loved one from different doctors, but we know the symptoms, and our loved one is getting treatment. The symptoms of a SMI can change over time, also.

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