I was with my wife for 11 years, and we would still be together if she hadn’t died, and her death was due mainly to external factors beyond our control
… I was diagnosed SZA-Bipolar, and she social anxiety and PTSD. However, had my wife told the doctors everything she would have been given the SZA or SZ label. She would not tell them about the delusions and hallucinations.
I may not be a psychologist by I can self diagnose. I was accurate when I DX’ed myself. And while I feel my wifes “hallucinations” were actually spiritual or technical in nature most of the time, I believe she did have delusions, grandiose delusions. I won’t go into detail but she literally believed for 2 years before she died that she was one of the top people assisting the aliens in the takeover of planet earth to transform humanity, and even carry some humans to other planets.
Yet, for the most part we had a good relationship. The ONLY time things got rocky is if I drank too much. This factor also messed up another relationship I had, a good relationship with someone diagnosed paranoid SZ. Only this factor. So I don’t drink at all now. I hadn’t drank regularly before that, but it only takes once to drink too much and spout off at the mouth and act stupid.
Alcohol in excess will intensify symptoms.
But, even though I have the SZA bipolar diagnoses I have had good relationships and able to handle situations “normal” people couldn’t or wouldn’t. Maybe it’s because I understand them. Maybe that’s why they could have good relationships with me.
The 2 major things I had to deal with in relationships was my partners social anxiety and paranoia. But these issues don’t bother me…maybe a few times I left Walmart without getting everything on my list because I felt it was too crowded, but other than that I can shop, interact with the public, and if I feel like someone is watching me, it doesn’t bother me. These are things that bother many people with SZ, and I can see how they would affect a relationship.
So, how do you stick around? Because you love someone and made a commitment, and part of that would be to understand what they are dealing with. Understand any symptoms or behaviors, and work with them. If you don’t know about them, learn about them.
Almost all marriage vows have that part “In sickness and in health, for better or worse.” SZ is considered an 'illness" So you would stick by your partner through it…like the husband says in the article "“I went back to my vows and they didn’t say ‘In sickness and in health unless it’s inconvenient.’”
I would say the only time you wouldn’t stick by them was if they were beating the crap out of you, trying to kill you, destroying your home, or abusing your children if you had any…
Like he says, he calls himself her primary caregiver. He knows her best, and he has stayed with her 20 years.