My fiance, whom I’ve been with for almost 4 years now, is 22 and has just been diagnosed with schizophrenia. I am now trying to get as much knowledge about it as I can. He just started medication (Risperdal 2mg)
I’m wondering what the first steps of a caregiver are and how do I handle his hallucinations and delusions?
I’d say the biggest thing you can do is start educating yourself on this illness. There are many facets and symptoms and things that can easily turn into something big.
There are negative and positive symptoms. Cognitive abilities get affected, so does memory.
Many meds come with huge side effects and people don’t always stay med compliant, not because they don’t want to be better, but because the meds feel worse then the disease.
The more you know, the more you can help him. Also, please start looking around and getting to know what resources are in your area, what treatment centres are bad and good.
The more you know, the more you can help. The more you can also help yourself.
Get some support for you as well. I ended up in a sibling support group and it was exactly what I needed. Ideas and resources started coming our way when we knew what was out there.
It’s not always easy, but it’s possible to get through this.
Also, remember to hang out with your loved one and leave the SZ chat on the shelf once in a while. My brother hates it when all the conversation is about his illness.
The list of what you need, can feel huge.
Good luck and I hope you and he both get support and kindness.
Welcome to the forum.
Welcome to our forums. We hope you’ll find this site a valuable and supportive place for getting information.
Most people are not as negative as NiceHat is. Schizophrenia recovery is something that is much more common now with good therapy and treatments available to many more people. You’ll find many people in our forums who have schizophrenia are generally doing well though not without problems. And there are many new treatments coming down the pipe (see the home page of schizophrenia.com for recent news).
Some good ideas for how you can help / cope with hallucinations and delusions are here:
Best way to take care of your husband is taking care of you. You can’t help him if you get depressed and stressed out. Remember to make time for you. Your own interrests. If you like music, painting, workout, shopping, see friends. Plan ahead to make sure you get your “ego-time” you need it to gain energy and lessen your stress levels.
Also you can read and ask on here if it is something you think about. If he just had a psychotic episode it takes a long time to recover. It took me almost 2 years before I could go back to work part time. I needed help with everything. I couldn’t even cook anymore. I had to learn everything again.