Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

One Raw Nerve and One Really Bad Day

I am the wife of a veteran. He has the diagnosis of paranoid schitzotypal disorder but the VA puts it under the umbrella of PTSD. We’ve been married 4 years and we are older… second marriage for both of us. His father is schitzophenic and his family has told me his mother was as well but she died when my husband was little. That’s our simplified background. Today is a really really bad day and there isn’t a part of me that isn’t so exhausted, stressed and hyper aware of everything that I feel like I could vomit. I thought I could handle this and that I had the skill set to adapt but last night was hell. My generally caring husband, after another argument, more heightened paranoia snapped and stood in front of me and “chugged” his meds. He said it was my fault for not walking away from the argument. I called 911 and he told me not to. Obviously I had to. He came over and grabbed my face and his shifted. He was instantly calm. Cruel in a way but strangely calm and said I did it. The police would come and he would deny taking it, deny touching me, deny it all and I was going to lose everything and then he smiled. When the police came he told them he faked it to get my reaction and chuckled. This is not who he has been the last 4 years. This is Mr. Hyde to Dr. Jeckle . So today he acts like everything is fine, justified…so much he says never happened. I need insight. I need to temporarily sooth this raw nerve that has taken over my psyche. Nothing any of you could say will offend me or scare me. I just need perspective…some kind of hope in my little bit of hell.

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Welcome to the forum @GEORGE . I understand the Mr. Hyde to Dr. Jeckle transformations. I saw them in my daughter for the 2.5 years she had unmedicated schizophrenia. I found this site when I was desperate by Google searching “unmedicated” psychosis. I learned so much from @Hope 's thread, and found much needed support, which I badly needed at that time.

My daughter and I had many verbal and physical struggles from 2016 onward, including police at our home over 40 times in one year. However, police, courts, 5 forced hospitalizations and long acting injection medicine worked to give us back a good life, since Dec 2018.

It is your right to call the police when he is threatening himself or others, but it is very hard to make yourself do it to someone you love. It took me a long time to stop feeling like a traitor when I called 911. It was especially hard when my daughter “settled down” before the police came, and she seemed normal to them when she’d been anything but normal just a short time ago.

I suggest that you come here and read and learn what others have done and experienced. You won’t feel so alone and should find hope. The war we caregivers wage on schizophrenia is a hell unlike any other, and one most families that are unaffected by severe mental illness cannot even imagine. You are brave and loving to care for your husband through this.

I am so sorry for what you have gone through. Thank you for taking the time to respond to me. It means a lot.

By “chugging his meds” do you mean that he swallowed a whole bottle full of pills? If so, it shows that he is a danger to himself, and possibly to you. The impulsivity is a warning that something worse could happen. He needs to be involuntarily committed for an emergency psychiatric evaluation where they will keep him for maybe 10 days and possibly have his meds changed or dosage adjusted. Check the laws in your locality to see how you can initiate an involuntary commitment.

No. He cheeked it. I didn’t know it then that it was a fake out to get a response. It was cruel. I agree about his meds. The problem with the VA is I haven’t been able to talk to his doctor’s so it is up to him to be clear enough to articulate issues and lately he’s been far from it.

The doctors can and will talk to you if your partner signs a release allowing them to talk to you. Often a person with schizophrenia doesn’t trust their own loved ones and won’t sign a form. Repeated requests to your loved one to allow you to visit or to take your phone calls or to sign the release sometimes will work one day when they wouldn’t work the day before. You just have to keep trying. And don’t take the mistrust personally, it is usually the illness speaking, not your loved one.

I went through a lot to help my daughter. I just couldn’t give up.

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@GEORGE, You are going to need some support people in your life. Any chance the VA hospital has a support group for spouses?

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Not that I am aware of but I will check it out. The hospital is a couple hours away from us so proximity isn’t great but I will check for maybe online support group options maybe through the VA. Thanks for the suggestion.

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