Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Setting boundaries

Had to set boundaries with husband tonight. He has been screaming constant obscenities at me. Telling me to get the f—- out of his life. Screaming it really loud. This has been going on our whole marriage. We have been married 12 years. He has been diagnosed with schizophrenia. He hears voices who say terrible things to him. After this last yell, which was probably the worst, I told him he needs to call his psychiatrist and schedule an appointment. He is on too low a dose of Abilify 10mg. He takes 75mg of Effexor and that is it. He needs to get into his psychiatrist and tell him the amount of yelling he is doing. He is also screaming in the apartment parking lot. Very very loud. His psychiatrist keeps him on the low dose because my husband tells only half truths and minimizes the severity of his yelling. I don’t think my husband realizes how loud he yells. He said once that he knows he doesn’t yell as loud as they do in the hospital, well I can say from experience in the hospital that he yells even louder.

I had to set boundaries with him. We have separate apartments and I told him he is not to come back to my apartment until he sees his psychiatrist and tells him what is going on. I think my husband is afraid to go on more medication because he is afraid of feeling sedated. Which is possible, but it’s better than this.

Does anyone else have to set boundaries with their sz family member?

But then again…I miss my husband so much when he is gone. He really is a wonderful person and I love him very much. Maybe I can try to make things easier for him. We have a lot of stress right now, we are both trying to quit smoking, we sold both our TVs for cigarettes so we have no tv to watch. We can’t buy another tv until November when we get paid. Just a lot of high stress. Maybe I am being too hard on him and I just need to try and make things calmer, low key, low stress.

I don’t think you’re being too hard on him. Boundaries are important. You shouldn’t have to deal with that. It’s one thing if he’s talking openly with his pdoc, and consistently taking his meds. But it’s a whole different deal if he refuses.

Personally, I’m diagnosed with paranoid sz, and schizoaffective-depression type. I don’t agree that I’m currently delusional. But I have so many people telling me I am that I take my meds. Plus, there are things the meds have helped me with. I tell my pdoc everything.


I am sorry Lavender that you are going through this with your love. When my daughter wouldn’t let me talk to her doctors, I wrote to them anyway, giving information on what was happening with her at home. The doctor won’t be able to respond to you without your husband signing a release to let him talk to you, but I know that my daughter’s doctors read my faxes and letters to them as they adjusted her meds sometimes. This is one way you can try to help since your husband isn’t truthful, or believes wrongly that he doesn’t scream that loud.

My daughter got arrested the 2nd time screaming at buildings downtown, and when security called the police, she tried to kick the policeman. When I found out she was in jail, I went to see the judge to let him know she was severely mentally ill, and he court ordered medicine. That was the beginning of the end of her psychotic days, and was almost 3 years ago now. It was a long battle to get her medicated, but it was worth it. She is doing very well now.


Boundaries are often necessary. But I’d like to encourage you to share YOUR observations and concerns with his psychiatrist if you know who it is. Even if your husband has not signed a release, YOU can GIVE information all day long. Make it short and concise. Maybe a video of behavior?? Such violent behavior might also be a reason to contact a Crisis Intervention Team (depending what is the terminology and availability in your area).

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Your story, unfortunately, is too common.
My ex who had sz would do the same thing with his meds: convince the doctor to only prescribe the minimum dose of medication. The screaming has to stop. Insist on going w him to the psychiatrist and tell the doctor about these episodes.

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Hi Lavender, You need to have boundaries for your own mental health! Yes, they are wonderful people when they are in control of themselves. Unfortunately, I have come to realize, through a family member, that reasoning is a missing element with this illness. This illness robs them of comprehending things that seem so in the light to others! As I struggle to get help for her, I know there are things I expect yet she is not capable of following through until she realizes she needs help. She can’t comprehend this. It is always someone else who is causing her pain, disability, loss of income, etc…I know your struggles but it seems you have a good handle on separating yourself with a different apartment. You know what you can handle and what you are capable of handling. Pray for direction as each need arises that seems to give me peace! Otherwise, I am just jumping into the fire and stoking it instead of putting it out! I am so much more prepared for listening and knowing that I am not in control of other peoples actions. All I can say is don’t give up on them! “Love never gives up, never looses faith, is always hopeful and endures every circumstance”. 1 Corinthians 13:7

Hi Lavender, I go through the same issues with our 48 year old son,. I wonder if the Abilify is really working; he takes also minimum and only that, except he had a shot about a month ago: 400 mg of Abilify sustenna, he’s due tomorrow and Im already wondering how we’re going to accomplish that since he’s very resistant to the meds, that’s why he has to get the ministering of meds this way; he still screams not only f’s but lots more and very loud! I can hear him from the corner where he goes to catch the bus.
At the end of March he got probably the 4th shot of Abilify and at the end of May he was back at the hospital because he stopped going to get a shot, again in August and in the middle of September for about a month when I had to go to the court to have a judge to write a letter for me stating what as a plenary guardian can do as far as the ability in deciding on the meds for him! Yes, they administered him the long release shot at the hospital but I knew that as an outpatient we were going to go have this challenge. I was looking into a residential program for him but it didn’t happen!
Every time he’s released from the hospital he doesn’t show up for the follow up appointments, he puts everyone in the corner and unable to help him.

My best wishes to you! I hope you feel that at least you have related your story that is very familiar to all of us and we understand the difficulty of the situation, your husband wouldn’t willingly pick up to have what he has to make your life miserable.

We hope for better days!