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    Online Support for People Who Care About Someone with a Mental Illness

Is help available to family members?

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Is help available to family members?

Unread postby DubyaB » 12 Feb 2018


I am the father of a 34 year old son with schizophrenia. My wife and I love him with all our heart, of course, and we do everything we can do when he asks for or we see he needs our help.

When he's well, he's a gentle, comical, smart and ambitious young man. When he's not well he believes people come into his home to harm him while he's sleeping. His fear of this is so intense that he screws his windows and doors shut. He sometimes believes he hears voices conspiring to hurt him through his outer walls. (He believes people are out there.) And if he misplaces something, he believes someone has come into his home and stolen the object. If someone were to wander onto his property and leave tracks in the snow, he would see that as evidence someone was there to hurt him.

Real or imagined, he sincerely believes those things, and of course, he reacts as any of us would: With anger. And when that happens, he comes to our home enraged and verbally blowing off steam as he tries to put together the pieces of the miscut puzzle schizophrenia has dumped upon him. Who it may have been... What he's going to do about it... All his paranoia's come to a mean, shouting, head.

He asks for our help, (Catch them, stop them, do something about it), but that's impossible - and he sees our lack of action as a sort of passive alliance and becomes angry with us.

We understand it's the illness talking. We try not to take it personally, but it hurts intensely just the same.
We know enough not to agitate the situation. We sit on our hands, listen, and allow it to play out. We allow him to vent. But emotionally, it's brutal for us. As brutal as it must be for him, which breaks my heart.

My wife and I need some education regarding how to deal with those situations when they arise. At the moment we're flying by the seat of our pants, doing the best we can. Some training would be a definite advantage.

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Re: Is help available to family members?

Unread postby AndrewBCSS » 15 Feb 2018

Hi DubyaB,

Thank you so much for reaching out. Schizophrenia is a difficult illness to manage and challenging for everyone, caregivers and families included.

I'm looking into which Regional Educator or Branch to connect you with, both offer information and services. We have some great programs and hope that we can connect you to the information you need.

If you have any immediate questions, please call us at 1-888-888-0029.

Andrew Stewart
Operations Manager
British Columbia Schizophrenia Society
A reason to hope. The means to cope.

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