Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

New To All This

After 3.5 long tumultuous years together, my Girlfriend and mother of my son, has been diagnosed with Schizophrenia. She’s in her mid-30s and I’m in my early 40s. Today is her last day participating in a partial hospitalization program. I’m not sure what my role is at this point. For the first time in her life, she is seeing the world how it really is as opposed to the world that she has always seen. Prior to this diagnosis, I was ready to walk away from our life together. She has said and done some terrible things. I’ve even been arrested because she told the responding officers that I hurt her during a manic episode where she hurt herself. She was scared of being committed against her will and scared that the Government was “in on it”. I’ve stayed with her for a few reasons. We have an 20 month old son together. She has three boys from a previous relationship that I’m very fond of. Also, she is currently unemployed and would not be able to take care of herself and the boys if we split. I feel like I’m taking on a lot of her responsibilities. I love her. There’s no doubt there. If I didn’t, I would’ve bailed a long time ago. Also, if we were to split now, I’d feel like a real jerk, walking away when she and the boys need me the most.

I’m already seeing a counselor to help me navigate this situation. I guess I’m having difficulties forgiving her for some of the things she’s said and done over the last few years. How much of it do I chalk up to her mental illness? I probably don’t have to explain to anyone here how taxing this can be on a relationship, but the last thing she needs is something else to worry about right now. My family thinks I’m an idiot for staying with her. All they see is her manic behavior. I guess I’m not sure what I’m doing. Right now I’m just doing my best to be supportive, telling her how proud I am of her for seeking treatment and confronting the situation.

Thanks for the listen.


Reads2much, I commend you for staying with her and helping her and her children. I think those encouraging words could mean the world to her right now. In fact, it really makes a difference in recovery to have someone who cares about the person and offer support.

People do recover and get better with therapy and meds. I hope she is one of them. Don’t lose hope.


Hello, I’m sorry you’re going through this and glad you found a counselor to help you navigate.

You know yourself and you know her. You will find your way.

Take your time and make your way as slowly or quickly as you need to.

What other people think is hard to hear, but you only have to live with your own choices and feelings, not theirs.

It’s great she is seeking treatment and that you are finding ways to be supportive and also take care of yourself and the kids. It’s a lot. I hope you find what works best.


You are an honorable man… The Lord bless you and give you wisdom.


You share a common bond that is permanent - your son, so she is always going to be a part of your life. You sound very compassionate and on a great track by seeking counseling. I hope you are getting the most from your sessions, they can be very helpful when you find the right fit.

and how does she feel about her new perspective?

Your encouragement could only be beneficial. Try to get your family to understand the illness. People who truly understand schizophrenia are more easily able to forgive. But you need to take care of yourself - you have a lot going on. She’s lucky to have you…


16 years.
I eventually found forgiveness. He doesn’t remember all, but what he does remember, he feels terrible about. Our life is completely different with meds. He is the kindest man I have ever met…and has been one of the most frightening too. Jail was a long time ago.

We found peace.