Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Need Support please


#1

Hi everyone. I posted yesterday after an absence of a few weeks about my husband in the hospital voluntarily.

I think I’m overwhelmed. So many thoughts are in my head. I’m just going to list them, in hopes that someone will have an idea about one.

  1. He’s finally getting help, but refusing medication. He needs medication. Without medication in voluntary treatment… I was so grateful that he took this step. Now I realize if he keeps refusing medication, nothing will change.
  2. My children are scared of him and I think my oldest daughter (16) hates him. The house is calmer, they don’t want him back. As an adult and his wife, I get its an illness. They dont. How is this ever going to work if we aren’t living together?
  3. Until he gets medication and the delusions reduce a little, he still is adamant I’m a bad guy. My marriage is still gone.
  4. He’s seeking drug rehab, as he does not think he’s having delusions. If he has untreated psychosis, he can’t get in an inpatient drug rehab program. That would mean continued spiralling.
  5. Related to #4, I’ve been warned that he will likely be released from this unit before there is a bed available. He can’t come home. He can’t be alone bcz he won’t stay clean. Where am I going to find him to live?
    6)His family all have mental illness and substance abuse issues. His dad asked me to tell him when he can visit. I don’t think seeing them is good. He said he didn’t want to. Can I stop it or put it off? Is that mean?

I miss my husband. I’m scared he won’t live with me and we will be married in name only. I’m a little discouraged.


#2

@Sadwife It is good news that he was voluntarily in the hospital --in spite of him refusing medication it is a positive step. Maybe you could ask your county probate court what it would take to assign him a court appointed legal guardian --since you have the kids and yourself to think of…he won’t like it and you would have to be patient during the whole process-- but a guardian through probate would not be emotionally attached to the situation and they will demand that proper medications be taken or find a way to make it happen (sometimes monthly shots are possible) and he may have to live somewhere else until he achieves stability …maybe a group setting or something but the guardian would have to find it and make it work and eventually when he is stable let him work his way back into the family in a positive healthy way…but you can’t put the cart before the horse so to speak…he has to be stable BEFORE he can resume his previous position as husband and father…it is a hard truth that requires radical acceptance …yes it is extremely painful and difficult and puts a lot of responsibility on your shoulders to be the sole caretaker of your family. If you know that you have no influence over making him take the meds to become stable then you can’t help him as much as you wish you could. Caring for your mental and physical health and that of your kids has to be first --because it is what you have immediate control over…Someone else has to reach your husband through the fog of his delusions…and sometimes that takes awhile…occasionally a family member can do it— but if they can’t— it has to be a social worker, a doctor, a nurse, a therapist, a legal guardian or a judge…somebody he runs into in the course of this illness. I don’t presume to know your heartache in this case because I am not married and I have always been a single mother…but I do know something about radical acceptance and looking the hard truth straight in the face and saying this is what I am dealing with, this is what I can do something about and this is what I can do nothing about except be patient and stay out of harm’s way in the process. Radical acceptance allows you to keep moving forward when a part of your life is out of your control… I hope my directness comes across with the compassion I intended it to. I wish your whole family health and peace in the months to come. I am including an article on radical acceptance only because it has helped me a lot in my life with my schizophrenic son, and my schizoaffective sister and mother. http://www.mindfulnessmuse.com/dialectical-behavior-therapy/how-to-practice-radical-acceptance


#3

Catherine,

Thank you so much for the comment and your directness. Even though I’ve educated myself as much as I can, I think at some level I assumed he’d go in the hospital, get meds, and become himself. My rational brain knows he is completely opposed to meds unless he can buy them on a street corner. My emotional brain is a hope- er if that makes sense.


#4

Another thing that is hopeful for me. Out of this, I think he will given a diagnosis. When I talked to the social worker she seemed to be asking me diagnostic criteria: how long, voices, etc. I don’t know why having a name for it is hopeful, but I think I need that. I think his family needs that.


#5

@Sadwife makes perfect sense.


#6

He’s realized it’s a mental ward and only wants rehab. He’s talking about leaving. I’ve alerted the social worker and she’s going to let the doctor know and ask about an IVC to keep him. I’ve talked to his family and no one will go get him. He has no money. No shoes. I’m not answering the calls from the patient number until I hear back from the social worker. He’s an hour away from our town.

I don’t know what to do. There is no place for him to go until a rehab, and he’s too delusional for a rehab to accept him-the VA won’t sign off that he’s detoxed… because he’s delusional. Oh, I need help.


#7

Dear SadWife,

(I wrote this hours ago, but had to leave before posting it. I edited the part about any family members of his, after reading your latest post, but that is all I have energy to edit at this time. I could wait and edit it tomorrow morning to more fully answer your latest post, but I think you might find help in what I had composed for you, anyway, and I want you to have whatever help you can get from this, so I am sending it now. I hope it helps.)

If he has a mental illness, I encourage you to contact your local Nami resources. They can do so much. They offer family classes, where I learned a great deal from both the course and from the other family members in the course. If he has mental illness, the drugs are him trying to self medicate. He needs proper medicine. It sometimes takes a while before they get the medication right, but once they do, it makes all the difference.

You may want to check out the vitamins section of this website. I have found that nutritional supplements have a great benefit. Some psychiatrists, like some doctors, are against them, but many appreciate the benefit they bring.

Ask at the VA hospital if there are any family liaison, social worker, or nurse that you can talk to about your husband’s condition, and if they have any other resources that may help you in this difficult time. We cannot do this alone.

The immediate family of your husband’s mentally ill family members may be a resource for you, and may be able to express their love for your husband in a helpful way, especially if they have worked to learn about local resources and the skills that helped them to help their family member.

There are many books that are available that really have helped me so much. The one I am reading now, which I really am finding very helpful, is “The Complete Family Guide to Schizophrenia: Helping Your Loved One Get the Most Out of Life” by Kim T. Mueser and Susan Gingerich. I got the digital version for $9.99 on Google Play Books. The paperback is available on Amazon.com for under $20.

We are actually in a crisis ourselves, as we need to move in less than two months, after 8 years here, cannot afford the local prices that have escalated drastically, and my son has refused to leave, believing that if he leaves the area, he’ll die. So I am looking for the answers as to how to convince him he will be safe and that I will not let that happen. And I am finding a lot of wisdom in this book and another, “Social Skills Training for Schizophrenia, Second Edition" by Alan S. Bellack), Kim T. Mueser, Susan Gingerich, and Julie Agresta.

Take care of yourself. This is very big stuff, and takes a lot. Try to eat right and nurture yourself. Hopefully, you have someone who can talk about all this with you. Again, I recommend Nami. I find it helpful to share with those who have been in the trenches, who can often give valuable information from their own experiences, warm understanding and encouragement. I find that people who have not experienced these kinds of things and/or had some kind of education about it do not fully comprehend, so those who have walked in those shoes are invaluable friends. Hearing the voice of those helping, seeing the kind encouragement in their eyes, and feeling their hugs is only available when they are in your local area.

I tend to have anxiety attacks leading to depression when in terrible stress, and have found that taking 5-HTP, DHEA, Selenium, Calcium and Magnesium can bring me back from that and also can prevent it and keep me calm and level headed. The funny thing is that when crisis hits and stress compounds, I sometimes forget to take them and that is when I get into trouble, so my long-time friend reminds me, in such instances, and my body and brain start responding in about 6 hours. I can recommend these, which are available on amazon.com at good prices, and also perhaps in local health food stores. I am not a doctor, and am not dispensing medical advice. You can do internet searches for vitamins and herbs for stress. Or you could get anxiety meds from a doctor, if needed. I have gone that route, and they work, too.

With prayers and warm wishes for your wellbeing and that of your husband and children,

ILoveMySon