Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Need advice of the productive kind, please. Wife of a schizophrenic

So my husband is my very best friend, I do not even want to think about ending our relationship, but he seems to…quite often. He is bipolar as well and goes back and forth between “ I don’t want to lose you either” and “ I’m stuck with you because we have kids together, but you don’t make me happy and I want you to move out.” Honestly, I don’t think anyone really ever makes another person happy. I mean, you can do things that encourage feelings of happiness but i don’t think one person can make another person feel happy all the time, and this overwhelming feeling of walking on eggshells trying to make him feel like he is respected and happy is just …frustrating and exhausting as heck. No he is not on any medication, and honestly, I don’t want him to take any because it messes with him and makes him not himself So I don’t encourage him to take any. If you want to call me an enabler, fine, but he only has one life to live the medication was not making him happy or bettering his life, it just made him groggy and forgetful and gave him horrible muscle spasms and overactive leg pain, so no I refuse to push him onto any medications. He says he feels better without it and I trust him to be the judge of his own body and mind. Unfortunately, he is also paranoid and seems to need a scapegoat. And I think this is our biggest issue. Example being when I had a former friend who was roomating with us, he was constantly annoyed with her but much more patient with me. After she moved out, he started getting frustrated with his oldest son, my step son, who I had to intervene on the behalf of, and has now stopped talking to either of us for the most part. When he worked, he was constant,y angry with his employer, when he spent time with our land lord or neighbor, they annoyed him after a short time, but always during these periods when he had another target for his anger he was kinder to me, which I’ve started seeing as a pattern. I’ve even noticed, having not been there, but listening and taking not, that with his former girlfriend s he describes them as cheating and breaking up on him when he was between jobs, and I’m wondering if that was partially because like myself, they suddenly found themselves targets of his frustrations,but did not love him the way I door were not equipped. To handle his issues and thus broke if the relationship. Not that this in any way excuses how they did it in my book, because to me there there is no higher sign of disrespect than cheating and when you’re done with someone you need to just tell them, truthfully. I have never cheated or even looked at another man or woman in the decade we have been together and admittedly, this is my first true relationship and I have put everything into it, but because of his past he is constantly checking my iPad, my phone, my receipts, looking for signs of infidelity or lies and I just need some advice as to how to get through this and be a better wife and friend to him.

And before you start typing, please know he has gone through a horrible life from early childhood on and we both consider this part of him, not just an illness to be cured with a pill, so medication is not an answer I’m looking for. I’m trying to change myself, not him. And I will never give up on him or leave him, ever

Hi Shelley, welcome to the forum:)

Your situation reminds me of one of my family members who is married to a woman who has bipolar. When she is having her more stressful times and accusing him of infidelity or whatever is the delusion of the cycle (I suspect with her periodic delusions it might be more than bipolar going on - who knows?) my relative can get caught up in the accusations himself. I have to remind him that he has chosen to remain in this relationship and, due to that decisions there are times he is more of a caregiver than a spouse. He can’t fix her problems and concerns because they aren’t real. He just has to endure the cycle until it passes while trying to keep it from escalating. He struggles to not take the accusations seriously and always feels that he could change things for his wife if his behavior was different.

For many years she blamed her bad “cycles” on him, talking with others in a similar situation he has learned to try to embrace the Caregiver 3 C’s. He didn’t cause the bad cycle, he can’t control the bad cycle and he can’t cure the bad cycle.

To understand how those delusions get going - @Maggotbrane just did a really nice job on @Jane57’s recent topic. Good luck to you and all of us! hope

I don’t meant to condemn the women who left before you. Its a choice we all make for ourselves, even those of us who have children with brain disorders. Love and relationships require two people making an effort. During the caregiver parts of their marriage my relative is definitely on his own making the effort while his wife struggles and is unable to make an effort to help keep their relationship alive. Love and relationships are living parts of our lives, some people can’t handle doing all the relationship nurturing during the difficult times.

Edited to add “why is it the first conclusion” the name of Jane57’s recent topic.

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I have severe depression so I am not the ideal person to be a caregiver, I understand that, but no one else will stand by him and I love him with all my heart and soul, I will never abandon him. I have made mistakes in the past. I am paying for those mistakes right now because he uses them as examples to prove I am immature and do not love him like I say I do and that I am lying. Yesterday we got into a small disagreement due to him talking about how he hopes when he dies all his possessions are hard to get rid of because it will be a big middle finger to me and the kids, especially me. I told him I never want to get rid of his things and I wouldn’t, I would keep them for the rest of my life. I would mourn him ever single day, cry every day and never move on, he does not believe me, but it is true. I got upset because thinking of his dying devastates me and the idea that I am some user that will just get rid of every trace of him, when I fact I would cling to him even in death, upsets me too. I hope someday I can make him see that I love him more than my own life, that I would do anything to make him happy. I just don’t always understand what that is or when the right time is to do it.