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need help with how to best deal with hostility

Posted: 27 Dec 2011
by bharris68
Hello, all. I'm new here. My mother has schizophrenia. She's untreated, in her early 70s, paranoid, and has never been open to recovery. For the most part, she is harmless, but there is a side of her that is very angry and aggressive. I think it's a mix of her own frustrations for having lost her dreams of family and career. When she says something inappropriate or mean, I shy away from confronting her because I'm afraid of what I might trigger (she can be quite nasty).

As a result, I pulled away for many years. I'm in my early 40s and I've developed a safe, full, and healthy lifestyle. I would like to reestablish a relationship with her. Every time I try, it goes well for a little while and then she'll start giving little, and not so little digs. This is very difficult for me. In any other area of my life, I don't take abusive or demeaning behavior. I know she's lonely, deeply saddened by not having the relationships with her children that she wanted to have, and I love her. I don't to pull away, I don't want her to be alone, but I can't take abusive behavior.

I should mention that when I was younger, we tried on several occasions to get her treatment. All unsuccessful, and all very traumatic for her (and everybody involved).

Is there a good way of confronting and modifying behavior in someone who is untreated?

Re: need help with how to best deal with hostility

Posted: 27 Dec 2011
by AndrewBCSS
Hi bharris,
Untreated is tough. There is a fact sheet on the BCSS website that talks about how to deal with symptoms I think you might find helpful. It is listed here ... -symptoms/

Anyone else have suggestions from their own experience?


Re: need help with how to best deal with hostility

Posted: 09 Mar 2012
by PenguinLK
reading your post... i have the same issue with my mom. I'm in my mid 20's... and the lil' dips you call, i call them "episodes". I have had my neighbors, social services, cops, firefighters at my door looking for my mom. And that's when she would go for treatment. But it would only be a month. Sometimes that month doesn't fix all. They know they need to change and they try their best and take their meds, but the only thing keeping them in this life are their children! "us". To keep a healthy relationship, listen to her, but make the subjects that makes her happy. Find the things that "trigger" her and keep off that topic. for example< my mom's trigger has to do with her past and my father or my brothers father. You gotta change the subject and be strong. Visit them once in a while. Unfortunately, i don't.. I do on holidays... but i know its not enough. But i do hear from her it least once a week. My mom goes tanning, and works out... but very hard for her to find a job. I hope i helped a lil.