Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Parents are Schizophrenic


#1

Hi there. I grew up with pretty much only my mother, she had schizophrenia but has taken medication all her life, and has never had any type of episode and has never been emotionally unstable. She’s been a great and loving mother, you would never know she had any issues. My dad on the other hand, is nutty. And I haven’t seen him in over 5 years. He had angry issues and basically not very stable.

I’m quite happy, and always have been. I’ve never had any symptom whatsoever similar to schizophrenia. I smoke pot regularly, but never ever in excessive amounts only to relax me and go to sleep. And if you research recent studies about the link between marijuana use and schizophrenia there is very little evidence that proves it. I do have anxiety from time to time, but who doesn’t?

Anyway, what I’m getting at is is there really a high risk for me to develop the disease? I’m almost 21 now. In your guys’ opinion, do you think it depends on the type of person you are and your outlook? I am a very reasonable person, caring, understanding, friendly and social person so I really can’t see myself ever having distorted beliefs…

I’d love some advice and would just like to talk about it.


#2

Hi, I’m Surprised J, and I do try and be honestly helpful. I’m not asking this to be a jerk, I’m trying to understand your question. I really don’t know how to answer… Are you asking if your at risk because

a. your parents have Sz?
b. you smoke pot?
c. you have a nice personality?

My parent’s aren’t Sz but I am. I was not well in the head long before I could get ahold of pot. (my parent’s think my first episode was when I was 5) I do try to be kind and helpful and I still have Sz.

But I try to be kind and helpful because I like it, I don’t think nice actions tally up to a cure.


#3

No, I’m basically asking because I know genetically I have a higher risk, and I figured that by my age there would be some symptoms and I know that a red flag is personality changes with the person. But I don’t really have any (that’s why I pointed that out…). I just was always told that it’s good to be social and out going at a young age to decrease your risk of developing schizophrenia later in life. This leads me to believe that personality and outlook do play a role and will affect if you’re diagnosed or not. I know there is no real answer that anyone can give me I guess… It just freaks me out that one day I could just develop it out of nowhere and possibly get delusions… Because my parents have the illness is there still a big chance that I won’t develop it? Or is it more likely that I would? I just don’t want to feel like it’s a guarantee I will get it


#4

I don’t know what too tell you on that one… You could be in a car crash, suffer brain damage and get delusions. There is no way to predict what life will throw at you. You might avoid SZ all together and suffer at the hands of debilitating cancer. If your trying to cut your chances, of SZ (and cancer) I would say stop the pot. But I’m not in any position to be the judging eye on this. Just suggesting.

It could onset through stress. It could onset through biological changes, it could onset through head injury. There are too many cards to take into consideration.

I’d say really read, research, educate,… really get to know the flavor of this monster and know what your dealing with. If you do get this, know that there is help and you can get you life back on track. It’s not the end of the world. Things are getting better in treatment, meds, etc…
The more you know, the better off you’ll be.


#5

I do not know how to give you a link but look up WHEN DOES SCHIZOPHRENIA SHOW UP IN WOMEN (PSYCH CENTRAL) found it through GOOGLE search engine. Interesting article with question from daughter 21 with both parents have schizophrenia. For women first peak onset is 25-29 years age with another peak 40-44 yrs age. I thought it answers questions you addressed. Hope this helps


#6

Smoking marijuana gave me schizophrenia. ( not to say I didn’t have brain damage before I started smoking pot)


#7

Hi,

Given your very high risk for schizophrenia (40% on average) - I think it would be a very, very good idea to avoid smoking POT - there actually is a lot of evidence that it can push people who have a genetic predisposition over into psychosis. Also - you should also know that women typically don’t develop the first signs of schizophrenia until much later in life than men. Here are some links and information to read up on:

"Schizophrenia is a disease that typically begins in early adulthood; between the ages of 15 and 25. Men tend to get develop schizophrenia slightly earlier than women; whereas most males become ill between 16 and 25 years old, most females develop symptoms several years later, and the incidence in women is noticably higher in women after age 30. The average age of onset is 18 in men and 25 in women. Schizophrenia onset is quite rare for people under 10 years of age, or over 40 years of age. The diagram below demonstrates the general “age of onset” trends for schizophrenia in men and women, from a representative study on the topic. "

http://www.schizophrenia.com/szfacts.htm

Be sure to read up on the evidence on Pot and Schizophrenia:

http://www.schizophrenia.com/prevention/streetdrugs.html

And read up on preventing schizophrenia:
http://www.schizophrenia.com/prevention.htm

I hope this helps.


#8

This is a good link:

Bluesky - just post the link into the body of the entry here (on its own line) and it will show up as an active link (or more, for many sites).


#9

@maarrryyyyy I didn’t develop psychosis until I was 36/37, so you’ve got a long way to go before you’re in the clear. No one in my family has schizophrenia. And I only smoked pot once when I was twenty-five. But I agree with the others–stop smoking pot. It can trigger psychosis in vulnerable people.


#10

This may help you to not feel alone in your concerns.


#11

You might also be interested in this book:

GROWING UP WITH A MENTALLY ILL MOTHER - “DAUGHTERS OF MADNESS”, A NEW BOOK
Read more… Schizophrenia - Family impact · Schizophrenia Books, TV, Movies & Plays · Schizophrenia Personal Story

Daughters of Madness is a new book on daughter’s experiences of growing up with mentally ill mothers. The book is unique in that it includes an introduction on how children are affected by mentally ill parents and also covers the related research. The rest of the book is full of interviews, and personal stories of women who have experienced a mother suffering from mental illness. Although the book is about daughters and their mothers, anyone with a mentally ill parent or family member may find it beneficial.

http://www.schizophrenia.com/sznews/archives/005387.html


#12

Hi I would recommend quitting the marijuana. I personally have noticed that it has made me extremely manic and delusional in the past. I’ve tweaked really bad off it. It is also known to worsen depression. It might provide temporary relief but it is not worth it in the long run.

My brother used to smoke a little, but he told me he quit and I’m pretty sure he did. It’s not worth the risks, and some perceive it as a gateway drug.


#13

yes me the same, i wouldnt do anything of that stuff.

have tried it, because some study said it would be relief, because of some substance in the weed.
Yet i dont buy it. for me its a rollercoaster experience, it triggers the delusions and chaotic thinking even way more.


#14

Thank you sooo much everyone… Seriously, you don’t know how much this helps and I’m now at ease from the anxiety I’ve been feeling lately. Especially @SzAdmin, hearing that I’m not the only one feeling this way for some reason gives me the biggest sense of relief.

I think I have all the help I need thanks again


#15

Hi I’m Rin I’m sorry to hear that your folks have schizophrenia. But if you ever need to talk about anything, just message me, okay?


#16

I’m in no way an expert of any kind on SZ I ended up on this site for support on that…but I can share some insight with you, I’m an addictions counselor and I have (had?) a partner and two family members with SZ… I’m also a neuroscience major in college and I agree the results aren’t all the way in yet on the link between marijuana and SZ but if I had a genetic vulnerability and there is some data to support this claim, I wouldn’t risk it. We do know that marijuana is classified as a hallucinogen and has psychoactive properties (there are some people that do hallucinate and develop psychosis from sole marijuana use) There are a multitude of other ways to relax and fall asleep, I assure you as a person with 9 years clean from a past of daily marijuana use.

As far as onset, I can just share the stories I have experience in. My partner doesn’t do any drugs at all but I noticed a change in him more noticeably around the age 27-28 and it started with him just being really unable to handle any normal life stress, any stress that came to pass he shut down and isolated.

My MIL has SZ and she told me that she used to smoke a lot of pot when she was younger. I could not say that she was using the drug to self medicate or if it aggravated, only I can note that she did it and has SZ. She believes that it did have something to do with her onset.

My cousin has SZ and he also had his first episode shortly after he started smoking pot and he was 25 at the time.

God bless, I hope you get the answers you need.


#17

My mom has schizophrenia and she has been unstable all day. It got to the point I had to leave my house, and I’m at my friend’s house. My brother and I have grown up having to leave the house and spend nights at friends houses all the time. My brother would go out almost every night and spend the night at his friend’s house. Right now, I’m sleeping downstairs on their couch because I was afraid to go home. Literally afraid.


#18

My son was diagnosed with this disease Feb of 2013. He was 25. It was a surprise to me and it was an unexpected situation that took place that lead him to be hospitalized. Not pretty! And very upsetting to me and his Dad (my husband). He was eventually sent home with medications and saw a counselor for a brief time. Eventually he stopped the medication. Me, I was in denial the whole year. Not proud of that now, but could not believe this happened in our family. Wanted to know what I could have done differently. Read up on the disease and realized that it is a hereditary condition (or can be). My sister had to remind me that our Grandmother had the same disease. I found it was nothing I had or hadn’t done. I’m at odds to understand why this would happen to a God fearing man. Should I be upset at God. I don’t think that makes much sense, but still it baffles me why my son. I continue to pray about it but not sure I’ve heard the answer. I’ve been wanting him to see a dr again and possibly get medication again. He seems to battle with voices (spirits) in his mind. He probably won’t go, but I’m gradually mentioning it so he can get use to the idea. Thanks for listening.