Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

What should I do?

Hi everyone- I need some advice. My MI husband (we are separated) lives in another town about 2 hours away with his brother. It’s worked out well. I’ve allowed him to come for visits and stay with our college age boys as long as he is respectful and appropriate with his behavior. I thought everything was going well. He left abruptly the other day, which is fine- tells me he’s had enough and headed back. But today my neighbor told me that my MI ex husband has been throwing the middle finger and cursing and spitting at him, then did so to his wife and daughter, and will press charges if it happens again. I had no idea this was happening and apologized. I’m shaking right now and don’t know how to approach this. Do I tell him he can’t come back here? He is not in counseling (there is nothing wrong with him) and doesn’t take medication. What would you do? Would you allow him back in the house?
If I try to talk to him he denies, blames, yells, verbally abuses; what other course of action is there?

Hi Katherine,

I think it’s your house, so they are your rules. As much as you want him to see the kids, it isn’t fair that he sours your relationship with your neighbors. Maybe you can set the ground rules, despite his protests of no wrong doing, and tell him that if it happens again you will have to deny him visits.


Yes it’s my home and now I’m mortified to show my face to my neighbors. I had no idea he was doing this. Obviously this is his paranoia showing up- and I didn’t know.

You are the one who has to see these people and it’s your house. I would definitely set some ground rules. Bottom line if you dont restrict his visits it will be done for him by the police. Sounds like your neighbor is serious (rightfully so).


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@Katherine I would tell him he can visit if he starts medication. Perhaps he could visit with your kids at a park or somewhere that isn’t your home? Sounds like he will eventually get into trouble. I am sorry to hear that this is happening. To put it bluntly - it sucks. Has he ever been medicated? Also, have you gone back and read the Leap method to try to get people to agree to meds?


Thank you so much. These are great suggestions, especially about meeting in a different location, such as a park or restaurant (tho with COVID they are all closed). I have re-read the book by Dr. Amador about LEAP and rewatched a couple of his you tube videos and they are very helpful. I really appreciate the support and empathy especially. When I reached out to the brother, I really thought he would respond with “I’m so sorry this is happening. It must have been so scary for you. How are you doing?” Of course I never get that from his family. Instead, it was “that sounds like a baseless accusation - is there any proof? Aren’t you overreacting?” Since I’ve seen my husband display these behaviors (and worse) in public many times to complete strangers, and I have seen him in full-blown episodes, yes I believe the neighbor when he says this is happening. So the support from this group here is very much appreciated. I was also surprised to hear Dr. Amador say that he doesn’t call it “in denial” but instead “no insight”. I will re-read to see what the difference is. No, my husband was non-compliant with the medication so he is not medicated. The counselor won’t see him because he was non-compliant. And he doesn’t believe there is anything wrong with him, but insists that the scar on his arm was from someone cutting it open during his sleep and planting a chip in him. It’s just heartbreaking to see him believe these things, and have these behaviors, when I’ve seen him be sweet and smart and charming and wonderful before.