Living With A Schizophrenic Mother

So my older brother called me the other night, the only one that calls me, and tells me that mom is in the hospital again. I wasn’t shocked. My first concern was to find out whether or not it was the usual reason or if it was her heart. It was for the usual reasons so I was relieved. Listen to me, “I was relieved.” It has become so normal that it doesn’t even phase me that she is once again in the hospital in the mental ward.

Living with a schizophrenic mom has taken a toll on my entire family. I live over four states away and there isn’t a thing I can do for her or her illness. I’ve tried in the past believe me. I’ve tried so hard in the past that it broke my family apart for a time when my oldest daughter was around two years old. I even went to live with mom in hopes coming back home would improve the situation. It didn’t. It seemed to have escalated it now that I look back. She is good at getting attention. All schizophrenics are. It is apart of their illness. Most of the family has tried to help her in some way but no one has been successful on helping her stay on track. She always ends up back at square one.

I have often wondered if she was really sick or just pretending simply to get pity. Growing up with it and not understanding it makes you view it in that way. She wasn’t a good mom I can’t sit here and praise her. I can however sit here as a grown woman and start to understand a little as to why she didn’t do some of the things she needed to do. Now some things she refused to do there are no excuses for. Like getting me ready for school as a little girl. There is no excuse for that in my opinion. Even in my worst day of a fibromyalgia attack I get up and make sure my daughter is ready for school the proper way. That is a mother’s job.

Mom probably decided to pull this episode due to the holiday coming up. Good ole’ Thanksgiving. It was my dad’s favorite holiday. She does this every year. Last year it was Christmas she went into the hospital. She either takes too many of her pills, or she’ll stop taking them all together. We haven’t had a problem with her overdosing in a long time. She now just stops taking her meds.

She was in the hospital about three months ago too though. She was staying with T whom I wish she would have nothing to do with and my cousin R, who is my aunt Eve’s son, attempted to run her off I heard and long behold she ended up in the hospital shortly after going over to the house I use to call home. I believe that is what set her in motion on that particular episode.

I’ve talked to counselors. I’ve asked for help from everywhere and there seems to be none that is worth the taking. The best I get is there are far worse people off then her who live on their own or who are homeless. I believe this illness has deadened my family and what it was meant to be. I believe it has been the sole component that has so easily allowed the barriers to be put up between my brothers and I. It silences our communication even though we need it so badly. We don’t know what to say or what to do to help our mom or ourselves in this continuing battle of schizophrenia.

When dad was around he was the caretaker. He was the one who handled her. He handled her well so we thought. We thought he handled her well because we didn’t have to “deal” with her or the illness first hand like he did. What a life he must have lived dealing with his wife having the illness and trying to raise five kids and having no money along the way. God bless him for being a great man and dad.

Throughout the years my mom has lost a lot of her family. Some have disowned her because of her actions that she has kept repeating. Some have disowned her because of her choice of being with T who is a shit bag. I can’t candy coat it here. I have no love for the guy and I never have. I tolerated him because he was married to my aunt Eve and while she was living I put up with him for her. After she died I was relieved that I wouldn’t have to have anything to do with him ever again. Well, so I thought! Long behold my mom decides to be “best friends” with him. I think there is more then friendship going on myself, and many others do so too.

I am angry that she did this once again. She pulled another selfish act. She wasn’t thinking how it would affect my nephew or my youngest brother and his family who expected to cook dinner with mom. He was looking forward to having that this year. Another holiday for him that will have an absent void in it. How can I be angry with him after all he’s lived with on his own since dad has died? I don’t know…whom should I be angry at?

Should I be angry that he couldn’t fix her? I couldn’t even fix her! Should I be angry at my oldest brother because he couldn’t fix her? I couldn’t even fix her! Why am I angry at all? Schizophrenia has destroyed my family. I only talk to one of my brothers on a regular basis out of four. There is something wrong with that. I’ve tried to reach out to each of the others. It has done no good. There is so much resentment for things said and done in the past that the wall just doesn’t seem to be coming down anytime soon.

We all have done everything you can think of to try to fix our mom and in the process of doing that we’ve hurt each other and never looked back. We all stepped in at different times to try different approaches in attempts to make her life better and along the way we’ve stepped on each other in one way or another.

So, I will call my mom tomorrow in the hospital to wish her a happy Thanksgiving. I’m not sure what conversation we’ll have except to ask why again? Like I have so many times before…

Times like these I wish my dad were here more then any other time.

Until next time, be safe…and have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

JO

Posted on Wednesday, November 26, 2008, in depression, family, health, journal, Journal Pages, life, medical, personal and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 127 Comments.

  1. Hi there! I came across this article while looking for some help for my schizophrenic mom. It helps to know that there are other people out there who deal with their parent being this way too. I was taken away from her when i was 6 for being neglectful and abusive.(I am 21 now.) I grew up overseas with my dad and would only see her once every couple of years. Well 2 days ago, she shows up at my house!!!! She got kicked out of her shleter in memphis and decided to get a one way flight to atlanta to stay with me, my fiance, and our 3 year old daughter. When i read ur article and saw the word “draining” I felt a connection with you. I have been using that word to everyone I know!!! Well she decided to start poisoning our family with negativity so we asked her to leave last night. Ofcourse she was not happy about that, so bought a bus ticket to orlando. With nothing there, no one she knows, hardly any money, I am very worried about her. Any help would be so appreciated!!!

    • um, im 14 and my mom was diagnosed with schitzophrenia when i was in second grade, i had a really great childhood and went on dream vacations, but that was when my mother was married to a fairly rich guy, during the summers my mother would start to act really strange and i couldnt understand why she would say random things and always be paranoid.after a while my mom was forced to go to a mental hospital and it was the first time i was ever apart from her. we used to be so close that i stayed uup all night wondering if she was okay.i was about 9 and i couldnt understand and i was so confused.i remember getting my first panic attack because of her disease and the way she acted and all that was going on at the time.i felt so lost and i still get panic attacks.i’ll never get used to it. but after 7 years of going back and forth with my mom to live with my grandparents my only father figure wanted a divorce. and as much as it tore me apart my mom didnt seem to care about the divorce, like it wasnt a big deal.i was going into middle school and i was under not only that stress of having to grow up but also coming home to a mom who was drunk , schitzophrenic , and slept all the time. at one point it was almost too much and i considered suicide. i was honestly terrified and i felt like no body not my family or freinds could ever relate or understand how much pain i was in.and not physical pain but torn apart in my heart.things did get better last year but my mother stills drinks and now she has a boyfreind that i know is just useing her for her disabillity check and i have told her for the past three months that she should leave him alone but now she has left me with my grandparents to finnish high school, so she can “live her life”. we used to be so close and now she, she’s just not the same person and it’s all because of a disease. if you can relate or just pray for me i would really appreciate it because i am basically raiseing myself now. also if you have any tips on living in a similar situation please let me know.

      • Hayley –
        I hope you’re doing OK. You can make it. Do what you have to do to go to college – you can go to a community college as a start and work part time. But, with education you can make a life for yourself financial and education also helps see the other side of things. Please take care of yourself. I’ll be sending you positive mental vibes!
        Been there,
        -Sarah

      • Oh Hayley, I feel for you. Remember you mother is your one and only, you don’t get another one. I understand how this illness can ruin whole families, it’s happening to me with my mother. Remember schizophrenia is an illness, and there are actually many different types..my mother has what they call paranoid delusional schizophrenia..she hears voices, has false memories, and she once called the cops on me, and told them i was putting arsenic in her coffee..and it was kinda funny cuz when i looked at the cop, and asked him if i could talk to him privately my mom said, ‘she’s just gonna tell you i’m crazy’…well DUH…honey, it is what it is, she is who she is, there is no cure..you have to find a way to accept her for who she is. She is your one and only, you don’t get another mother…

      • Hi Sarah! Only God knows what u are going through. I can relate to u, as i was unintensionally neglected by my schzitophrenic mom (i dont blame her!), as a child i was malnutritioned due to neglect and poor feeding and display the physical characteristics, i am small in stature with a sunken posterior fontanelle (sunken skull due to malnutrition) …ive attended 16 different schools up to the age of 14…thats grade 8 or standard 6 here in south africa. Reasons for many schools are divorce, my father found another woman (hate her!), he never wanted my younger brother and me. He physically abused us and forced my brother and me out of the house when we 13 and 11 respectively. We were also abused by friends and family, We were put into a place of saftey as my mum was unable to take care of us due to her relapses but she loved us more than anything in the world. As a child i watched many family members uncles ,strangers beat my mum up not understanding her illness but i was a helpless child. I loved my mum and never blamed her because i understood her illness …well i managed to overcome all of that and today im successfull, i worked extra hard at school and attended both university and tech. I dont drink and do drugs, im a law abiding citizen and i know u can also get through this . God bless u my child, anonymous .KEN. I will write to u again

      • Hi rich, dont know what to advise you, my daughter has this disorder and for me is the most horrible thing i had to go thru..im so worried about her and what it will come of her if one day ill die..try to get help as much as u can and support from organizations..blessings..

      • Hello my name is grant and im 19. My mom was diagnosed with skitsophrenia over 5 years ago and no medication will work. It has taken a toll on my lifr and i wish i could just help her.

      • Im 16 and i feel for you.. You wrote that years back so i guess we are the same age now.
        Yeah i’ve been living with my schezophrenic mom too. My mom was diagnosed with schezophrenia when she was in high school.
        I’ve had a tough childhood, as a kid ive been like battling eevryday in this life. I dont know, it was probably my mothers family memebers and her mom and dad (who btw now i knw are schezophrenic themselves) they kinda told me she was like my responsibility! God i was like four and she was my responsibilty? ( i hate them for ruining my chilhood). She would get abusive and violent at times and i hated my life and sometimes considered suicide too.
        My dad got remarried when i was four. But he enevr left me, he visited me every day and took me to his “other house”. My step mother was never mean to me, she was never cruel, or brutal or selfish but still i see her as an aunt rather than as a mother. But i still love my dad for sticking with me up till today and always being there.
        Guess i will never have a mother. My own is too busy being self obssessed. She kinda drives me crazy with all her delusional thoughts. She thinks i go running and have sex with evry other person or guy she sees. LOL that’s one of the reason i dont have any guyfriend dont want more problems.
        Well nowadays she thinks my cats will transfer AIDS to her.absurd… i know, well there are times I loath her beyond any limits. Sometimes when she gets violent i lose control and start pushing and shoving her and cuss sometimes ( i try not to but it just gets way outta control) afterward i feel bad for her. There are times i would wanna just run away. But im leaving for college very soon and probably be better off without her… I hope your doing fine, remember your not alone.

        – from an unknown friend :)

    • YOU DID THE RIGHT THING! AND IT TAKE COURAGE. dont let her drain your life! there are alot of shelters and food banks.

    • My mother has schizophrenia, and she raised me. I know 100% where you are coming from Jo. BUT alot of what you said hurt me. You can’t ‘fix’ her, you have to ACCEPT her!! It is a disease, it is a chemical balance in her brain, she can’t help it, she can’t change it, and neither can you. My schizophrenic mother has abused me physically, mentally, verbally, and emotionally…I remember sitting against my bedroom door locked, and being so frightened, and imagining jack nicholson HERE’S JOHNNY!! it was that bad. but guess what – I Love My Mom. I have been thru alot, i have been in prison twice for drugs, and I won’t blame that on her for not raising me correctly, or teaching me, I made my own decisions. But, my point with that is I am now the black sheep of my family, just as my mother is the black sheep amongst her sisters. No one is perfect. Since I an a recovering drug addict, and since I used to steal from family members to sustain that habit, I don’t really have a lot of contact with my family, EXCEPT MY MOM…my schizophrenic mother who abused me throughout my childhood is the only one there for me…My sister has totally abandoned her, her sisters don’t hardly speak to her, I am the only one who calls my mom, and she calls me too to talk about our day…I have screwed up BAD, but she loves me UNCONDITIONALLY, and I love her unconditionally, love should always be unconditional…ACCEPT HER for who she is…and things would be so much better you wouldn’t believe it!!

      • Hi Melissa.
        I read your post from 2 years ago I think…and it has brought me so my peace…just the knowledge that it is possible to love someone that hates you. I am not sure where your life is these days but if you are still dealing with this. But I would love to connect with you and I desperately need some helpful advice.

        What are the beliefs you live with every day that allow you to love one that acts like they hate you?

    • and Jo, let me add that your mom probably has those episodes around holidays because of the stress of it all. You said your dad died, and thanksgiving was his favorite holiday…no wonder she breaks on that holiday, think about it….schizophrenics can not deal with emotion as well as the average person…I think you need to be more informed on this illness sweety…

  2. To justordinary and brittnay…Good Lord…reading your posts just makes my situation seem like the norm, I grew up with a schizophrenic father and at the age of 47 am still the caregiver. Had I not had an “extremely” understanding husband…I honestly don’t think I would’ve made it this far in any kind of sane way. There were 4 kids in our house,and my father always told me I was the “favorite”…but still threw me around, and beat me at times breaking bones, and giving me the need for stitches! I remember being so confused scared, embarrassed and “constantly” on alert to signs of his next break down! As the oldest I put myself into the position of “guard” for my sister and brothers. At the age of 8, because my father could no longer work, my mother had to take on a number of jobs…so I was the one left home with this dangerous and very sick man…and was responsible for him and my siblings. I can remember sitting up all night long listening to him pacing the floors in the dark…I had to stay awake in case he might consider hurting one of the others. When I was finally old enough (not really) I left…but that only ended up providing me with a lifetime of guilt as I felt that I deserted the younger ones. If he was in fact normal, I would have written him out of my life for the things he’s done to me and my family. But as a decent person, I keep rationalizing that “he’s sick” so how can I desert him. Since my parents divorced…my sister and I are the care givers…and it has truly been a never ending hell with this man…non-stop guilt from him as we can never do right in his eyes…never an ounce of happiness when dealing with him and we’re never off duty. Maybe I’m evil, but I actually pray for God to take him so he can have peace and so we can have peace too. As a result of our upbringing all 4 of us kidsd have “issues” in one way or another. I wish you both peace with what you’ve dealt with and with what you still deal with. D

  3. I thank everyone for sharing. I am 39 now and just able to start to feel my way through: piece together what happened. I’ve spent my entire life living a lie (feels as though) with (as I realize only now) absolutely no sense of myself. This in part because the adopted mother I was raised by was schizophrenic, alchoholic, pill addicted. Now it’s interesting because when I was writing a first draft of an autobiography I tracked down mother’s old psycho-analyst whom in the last year or so before her death she was seeing 5 times a week. (Mother died when I was 13). She had taken to see this doctor (one of so many) as well to attempt to find out what was wrong with ME. So I knew him. In any event, I sat and spoke to him being it was so many years after mother’s death he could do so, and he flat out told me that she had been schizophrenic and that he had been the one to diagnose it and had made the choice back then in the mid-70s not to tell her. So she never knew that she was ill. She actually did know, her/our entire experience was trying to maintain her terrible health and horribly paranoid fear of death and dying. But she never knew that her skewed version of reality was one that many shared. Mother always felt so alone. (I believe she willed herself to death). But you know I felt and feel still so angry at this doctor. How could you not have told us? I asked him. He had seen both of my brothers and me and my father off and on through the years. I don’t think my father knew mother’s clinical diagnosis. And you know for the very first time in my entire life instead of being so “off” having no (perceived) emotions and just feeling like I had come out of a literal war (mother and I were in knock down drag out fights every single day of my life as a kid), I had this enormous sense of grief and compassion come over me instead of hatred, for mother. I remember I took the train out to see this doctor on Long Island and returning by myself on the train I sat actually feeling something. And the depths of despair were so incredible it was horrible but it felt good because I guess it was coming from within and not outside. In any manner just a little of what your comments have inspired me to recall so thank you for that. I am grateful today for being able bit by bit, to feel. So thank you…God Bless!
    Peter

  4. Hi, My mom suffers from schizophrenia as well. I am 16 years old and just 9 months ago i found out that i had type one diabetes. I have a yonger brother and sister ages 12 and 5. I have been dealing with messes that my mom has made for more than 6 years now and every time something happens I say i am done with her but that is never the case. She either wants to be with my dad or some man she has been talking to on and off again for three years. She has talked to him online but never meet him face to face. When she is in an episode she thinks she is madly in love with him. I never thought i would be saying this but i wish my parents would just divorce and move on but i know from you all’s stories that i will be dealing with my mom like this for forever because she will never just stay on her mediceine. People are always telling me i am angry and have so much hate bottled up but i do have a reason why because of what i deal with. Thanks to you all, Mona

    • Hello Mona,

      I am glad to see you stop by. I’m sorry to hear you suffer with a mother who has schizophrenia too. It is sooooo difficult to deal with on your own. I hope you have family and friends to turn to in your time of need. You could always create a blog and discuss your experience. It helps to release it. Anger is a normal response. I had years of therapy and most of it was needed because I have a mom with schizophrenia and it was very hard to deal with and still hard to deal with and I’m a grown woman now.

      Sometimes others don’t understand your situation because they don’t understand the mental illness schizophrenia. The best thing to do is help educate them about what it is like so maybe they can understand your situation better.

      Remember the blog community is here for you as they have been here for me. I hope to see you come back by again in the future. God bless!

      JO

      • yes, you have RIGHT to feel anger at having to deal with this crap in your childhood.

        you are ‘SUPPOSED” to be RECEIVEING love and nourishment from your parents,not have to struggle to survive them.

        yes its ok to feel anger , hate, dissappointment, as long as we dont get stuck ther I suppose.

        HANG IN THERE !!get breaks often from them

    • Mona, my mother has been married, i think like 4 times..she always accusing them of cheating on her…schizophrenia generally causes paranoia, and they will always think that everyone is against them. and the man in their life could be totally in love, totally faithful, but it doesn’t matter. My point is that a relationship where one person has schizophrenia usually doesn’t last. My mom who has it, she will be in love one day with her bf, want to leave him the very next day, accusing him of cheating, then all of a sudden i’m goin to her wedding. And I’m talking about this all in 3 days time..ppl with schizophrenia can’t handle emotions like average ppl…

  5. hi

    i to have a mother with the same illness and knew shehad something wrong with her but was never told exactly what until i was about 16. Im now 42 and see very little of the woman i feel so much sadness for. Growing up with with her caused me so much confusion and i found my whole childhood was taken up with worry. i didnt want to go to school as thought she’d be taken away as she was on many occassion with police and doctors and the crys of my mother saying we all betrayed her and pleading with us all not to let her be taken to the hospital. horrible memories of myself and my siblings being split up to different houses were i personally spent sleepless nights sobbing constantly and praying my mother would ok soon! i was a bed wetter until i was 14 yrs old another thing that caused me shame but it was nothing to the frustration and hurt caused when my mother accused of writing on her clothes and breaking holy statues, and being told constantly i was the devils disciple. i was always trying to prove my innocents. she still looks at me with mistrust today which is why i for my own sanity i dont visit as she has agreat deal of dislike for me but i hope thats the horrible illness and not my mother!

  6. Thanks for your post..It made me realize that I’m not the only one in this world with such helpless circumstances.

  7. Hi everyone,
    I too have realized that I’m not the only one in this world with a schizophrenic mom. I came across this article from looking up info about schizophrenia. I’m 14 and I have a sister that’s 18. My dad is the one that takes care of us. My mom always goes outside of our house and yells out of no where! It’s embarrasing. She yells so loud that the neighbors call the cops. She’s also not taking her medicine because she thinks it’s bad for her. So she’s unstable. She also uses the phone to call random people and accuses them of doing something bad. It’s horrible. I wish i had a regular mom. Everytime i see my friends with their moms’ shopping and stuff i feel sad because i don’t have that kind of relationship with my mom. She also accusses me of sinning and sometimes she tells me that she’s not mom. It’s heartbreaking.
    Anyways, thanks guys for sharing your stories!

  8. Hi, everyone. I am so glad to find this blog about growing up with a schizophrenic mother. I also had the same experience, and had many years of therapy, and am much healed from the trauma of years of living with her, unmedicated, by myself. I also wanted to let you know, especially the ones of you who are looking for more info, that I interviewed 44 others with this experience, and made it into a book. It was published in 2000, but is still relevant. I was just reading some of the reviews on different websites, and people with this experience seem to definitely resonate with the book, which is extremely gratifying to me. It’s the book I always wanted to read, but wasn’t out there, so I wrote it! The name of it is Growing up With A Schizophrenic Mother. It was written by me (Margaret Brown) and my co-author Doris Parker Roberts. I wish everyone well.

    Margaret Brown

    • hei im gonna read your book! i relate to everyone here.. my mom is a schizophrenic mother and sometimes we just cant handle her.. :(.. anyways thanks im gonna read the book!!

  9. My mom is paranoid schizophrenic and does not trust anyone. It is terrible to convince her even to go out on a walk alone. She needs almost 24 hours supervision. My entire family gets bogged down by this. But, we pull through because only we can stand by each other.

  10. Hi I’m glad I read this I plan to read this book by Margaret Brown. I feel like I’ve been avoiding the issues I still have in life due to my mom’s schizophrenia. The most hurtful one is the relationship I have with my sister. I feel like we don’t have a good relationship due that she poisons each other lives with her comments. My sister and I don’t talk much, we think differently and sometimes I feel she blames me for being “mom’s favorite”. We both had a terrible and traumatic experience in our childhood, she probably more than me. I have lived with my mom for years now and I had to deal with all her issues and all my families issues since she only complains about everyone, as if it was not enough with my own problems. Now I’m moving overseas with someone which I’m very much in love with and my older sister is staying with her. I wanna be there for mom and I wanna talk to my sister about her but sometimes I just don’t know how to talk to her. :(

  11. Hi,, ive just read this post.. and i have to say i do relate alot to what is here..I just turn 19.. i have two sisters(18,17).my mom was diagnosed with schizophrenia when I was 10 years. The doctors gave her some medicine and she used to take her medicine but then she stoped taking it when i was 15. She relapse and later on she was seeing things, having hallucinatiions badly.. she would always say that she saw things, or she would hear things. She would also talk by herself, she would hit us with the broomstick, or with a belt or highheels, but we wouldnt understood why she would hit us..We were good girls,we wouldnt get into fights or all that.Anyways she would treat us badly. she would yelled at us reall bad..Until one day she fell asleep and we call our grandmom and told her all this ugly stuff that was happening.She callede the police and they just came into the apt and grabbed her and took her to a phyquiatric center.We went to live with our dad to mexico(cuz were i live is the border).BUt later return with our mom and we went to live with her to these apts.. cuz she seemed good and she was taking her medice and all.BUt turns out she relapse again in this moment. I go to college and one of my sis too. And we are in the house she gets mad out of the blue and starts yelling at us, and talks by herself allday and omg!..KNOw okay shes being having problems with her parents since she was a little girl shes being a problem child and teen.She has 9 brothersandsisters.. but she doesnt talk to them nor her mom..See her mom used to treat her bad and her dad too..My mom told me her dad abused of her when she was alittle girl.. and that she started using drugs when she was a teen.I think thats why she has this illness:(..I dont know how to deal with her.SHe often makes calls to her sisters and tells them all this ugly things..her sis have try to talk to her but she refuses and gets mad when i tell her that her family is just trying to help her..She says that shes not crazy and that her family doesnt love her..Some of her sisters do love her.. but they just dont talk to her cuz they are afraid of hows my mom going to act.HOW Can i deal with her??… MY dad lives in mexico and i live with my mom, sometimes i go visit my dad and he gets worried of her.he tells me i should get her to a mental center.. but i dont know.. i dont like those places and im scare she would one day come off the center and relapse again.. She takes her medicine sometimes.. i tell her to take it.. but she goes like “i already took it” and she gets mad.. if i tell her..she goes by herself to the doc and i dont know it seems like the doctor doensnt know shes relapsing.. I need support.. what should i do?? thanks!!

    • Tell the doctor she’s not taking her meds and see what he says. Maybe they could find somebody to counsel her and help her stay on her meds.

  12. I feel your sadness. My mother also has a schizophrenic illness – completely in denial about it and i think always will be so we can’t get her to be med compliant.

    i find it hard to be close to people becuase i feel so ashamed about my upbringing.

  13. Hi,

    I am 57 years old and I had this problem of living with a schizophrenic mother for nearly 50 years. I was about 3 years old when she developed the illness, so I have no conscious memories of her being “sane”, and she died in 2005. My relatives disappeared after this. I do not know them and I have no-one to tell me the history or the truth. It is long gone. It is a story that would make most Hollywood melodramas pale into insignificance. My wife even told me that it should be a book or a film because many of the scenarios sound like fantasy. No. It was real life. Real horror and suffering, but also an amazing journey that shows how – if you can find the right spirit and strategies to face it and the right people to support you – you can achieve what looks like the impossible.

    I am an only child (for obvious reasons). My mum was probably diagnosed as a schizophrenic quite early on but I was only told about this when I was 13 years old. She was also blind (from keratitis which caused “golf ball” eyes from severe corneal scarring). I was informed by the (kind?) social worker at the time that schizophrenia was hereditary. From there the nightmare I had already lived turned into a journey into hell and back as adolescence and testosterone kicked in as well.

    My family lived in grinding poverty as a result of the circumstances as my father was also illiterate and disabled (a miner who lost his job with dust in the lungs and could then never get work). He could only provide the very basic minimum of care for me and my mother and because he was the “carer”, the state paid little or no attention to her needs. He was the man of the house then and she was the woman. He didn’t want to lose her, so he did not have her treated or cared for. Physical poverty made our lives hard, but intellectual and emotional poverty created a tragedy.

    But I never look back now. I chose a simple, imaginative way as a child of dealing with the problem that took me through many weird scenarios. But I became reasonably successful as a result and I – with the help of my wonderful wife – (technically) “cured” my mother and restored her sight!

    You may not believe this – and it is quite possible the diagnosis of schizophrenia was WRONG. But it took many years fighting the prejudices of doctors, her family, social workers and the establishment to achieve the outcome. I don’t think the diagnosis was so wrong, BUT GETTING A MEANINGFUL DIAGNOSIS IS AN ABSOLUTE ESSENTIAL, OR YOUR OPTIONS WILL BE SEVERELY LIMITED. The mind is complex and human behaviour is a spectrum with extremes. Schizophrenia and psychopathy are the very extreme end. She had all the classic symptoms – extreme visual and auditory hallucinations, paranoia (she thought I was a demon who had “replaced” her real son), violence towards the demon as well as fear of it and an inability to communicate as she babbled a constant stream of rubbish. Many years later we also found out she was profoundly deaf in her left ear, so her sensory isolation and loneliness must have been terrible. But after years of fighting for the right drug treatments and care, we found the one that worked. And it wasn’t the one we were expecting! The change was so astonishing that even now I find it hard to believe and that her life was so wasted and our lives so damaged when a simple treatment may have changed it all. Actually – make that TWO treatments given that a corneal transplant restored her sight – but as a “blind schizophrenic” she was on the lowest priority list possible for such a transplant. It took me 12 years to get it for her! The arguments were that she had been blind for so long that the optic nerve would be damaged. In fact she ended up with better sight than I have!

    For this I again have to thank my (handicapped!) wife who never faltered in her support. She also has had the experience of such prejudice and has a personal courage that dwarfs my own.

    I could indeed write a very long story here. But in the end I think it is perhaps better to focus on the way to help people deal with this. These things scar for life yes (I am certainly limited in the way I can respond to anyone emotionally) , but with the right attitudes and beliefs in yourself you CAN cope and even thrive if you are still young enough to deal with it. It will be a different life surely and will take energy and commitment – but I am sure it can be done. I often wonder if my high IQ came genetically from the scrambled reality my mother experienced and passed (thankfully, it appears, only a little) to me. I have certainly feared I would develop this illness and in my early life this threat dominated everything (yes, alcohol and drugs made their entry here and alcohol was a long battle. But won). But now I know this threat was actually very limited. I am in fact not so much more likely to develop the illness even if it was true schizophrenia – but I decided not to have children. I married a beautiful girl who also could not have children and we made our lives what they are now.

    I now regard reliving the details of my life with schizophrenia as emotionally non-cathartic for “curative” purposes (been there) and of little relevance to me now. Almost like self pity. I can relate the experiences that changed my life and I hope it may help you as well, but actual the abuse I suffered as a child I will not relate. It was general across the spectrum of abuse and pretty terrible and I nearly lost my life three times at my mother’s hands withs no-one to protect me. I think I only survived because she was also very afraid of me as the “demon”. If she had not been blind and frightened of me I surely would have been killed. I also survived probably like many of you by developing survival strategies. I don’t mind revealing such strategies, but the actual experience is a dark hole I don’t want to sink into again. It is a gruesome hole and there lives suicide and despair. It is the knife in my mother’s hand as she stabbed my father, the bottle she cracked in my face that nearly took out my eye.

    Thanks for this blog. You really feel alone don’t you? Isolated and fighting all the stigma. You feel different to other people. You are LADEN with guilt. This has to go. Only when you can forgive yourself (I deserted my home and parents at 14 – the biggest guilt trip ever) can you either build your life with others and help your tragic parent. It has been reported in the literature that people like me are lucky in that I have no memories of “normal” maternal behaviour because I was too young. If it develops later on the child experiences even greater guilt because it takes on the burden of accepting much of the guilt for the change in behaviour and the terrifying prospect of caring in the future because everyone else goes away. I was thus more likely to develop “normally”. This may be true indeed but I can’t imagine anything worse than my experiences. I came to the point of taking my own life and it doesn’t get worse than that (unless you take someone else’s of course). If they are worse then surely we are living in Hell already and there is no God.

    I am a scientist (PhD and Honours) and (reasonably good but no genius) musician. An inventor who has created hundreds of millions of dollars in wealth for corporations. Is that the product of this weird life? Should I be thankful? I don’t know. I only feel that I have never been – or so rarely I can’t recognise it – “happy” and that with all this achievement I should be. For a “genius” I also feel utterly naive and stupid because I do not have the emotional skills to make it all meaningful. This has nothing to do with intelligence/IQ. In my opinion you need to experience love without sexual desire in your mother and father’s arms to be able to fully relate to others and understand what it means so that you can recognise it in others and give it yourself. When adolescence gives you the meaning of sexual desire, not having the foundation really screws the whole thing up. You can’t distinguish. It leads to you live on an island in an ocean of loneliness where other people pass you by in boats, waving. Some may visit you on the island. Some may stay for some time. But they always seem to leave. Part of you is thankful for this and the other part desperately wants to call them back or look for the emotional escape raft to follow them.

    As I said – I hope to share and I hope to help. I have had an amazing, creative life, but probably no more so than many of yours either already have been or can be. I have a deeply caring nature, but also somewhat detached. That can be useful, but it is also so painful at times.

    My best wishes to you all on this life journey.

    Walt

    • Walt, although your post is from 4 years, I am curious to know what the surprising drug treatment was for your mom that you finally found to work after so many years of searching?

      I am 49 and grew up with a schizophrenic mom since I was 3. She has been in and out of hospitals for the last 45 years. Although I have two older brothers
      (51 and 53), I have become the main caregiver of my mom since my dad died when I was 27, and my brothers are of little or no help. I can relate to every single post here, except for the physical abuse. My mother never physically abused us kids, only abused my dad whe she would have an “episode”.

      Anyway, throughout the last 45 years, she has been on so many different anti-psychotics, I was just wondering what were the drugs that seemed to finally help your mom; unless you are referring to her hearing and blindness.

      My mom is currently in a mental hospital, has been for the past 4-5 months (minus a couple of weeks after first discharge), both times for cutting her neck. She lived by herself but now requires 24/7 supervision and most likely will not get discharged back to her home, unless she has someone live with her, which is not likely.

      She used to be good taking her meds, but now just wants to be “free”; free from doctors, hospitals and medicine. She is 73 and prays everynight that God takes her in her sleep. She blames me on and off for her having cut her throat and being in the hospital and accuses me of not loving her or caring that she’s in there. Says I’m not doing enough to try to get her out. I know better and know this is her illness talking and not her real self blaming or hating me. She doesn’t believe she has schizophrenia, frankly because she was never really educated about the illness, though they know much more now than they did in the 60s when she was diagnosed paranoid schiz. She gets angry every time I try to tell her “it’s your illness”. She thinks because she has a high IQ, she’s smart and she can’t have this illness.

      Anyway, sorry to go on and on, and could for pages and pages more. Guess it helps to get it out, even if only on “paper”, but was just curious about what treatment you found so helpful.

      Thanks, and love and support to all those who have had to live and support a loved one with schizophrenia.

  14. I appreciate everyone who has left a comment, a story of their own. I think it is important to do this so others who decide to read what I wrote know they are not alone in this crazy illness. It is a tough road to travel alone, so knowing there are people out there willing to post a comment and be known to the world they have or do suffer some way from this terrible mental illness.

    I hope you all enjoy my BLOG posts and I look forward to hearing from more in the future.

    God bless you all! May God give you strength when you need it.

    JO

  15. if you dont mind me asking who is her primary care giver now and does this sibling or friend have a life outside of your mom or have they been ristricted to live no life at all sounds like all of you have went onto live ur on lives and that the one you mentioned has been stuck with having to live his life around her this in my opinion isnt fair hows come he is the only one baring the burden does he get to have a life or does he have to always be the one all the time where are the rest of you? reason why I asked is that I come from a family of 6 and I have a mental mom as well and they have all left me here to be the constant caregiver and in return I have had nothing while my brothers and sisters are all married and all have big homes and nice cars and children and I am the o she will be ok as long as moms takin care of cause they dont have to worry its just not fair and I hope who ever is taking care of your mom isnt in my same situation for I would not wish this on anybody for it has been a very on fair life I hope they are getting help and that they are not desserted like I have been

  16. Wow, he is married with a wonderful wife, and a beautiful son. He chose to stay, maybe because he knew the other sibling there in town wouldn’t step up. Or maybe he felt it was his duty as the man of the house after our dad died in 96. He doesn’t care for her like you think. My mom is still independent to take her own meds, no one regulates or makes sure she is medicated. He fishes, rides dirt bikes, and does anything he wants. The sad thing is he leaves some of dealing with my mom on his wife now….but it isn’t her place if she chooses not to step up, it isn’t her mom. Also he never has been abandoned, I would travel from WI to Ohio several times a year to try to help sort stuff out and I WAS MADE to be the bad guy. Now I am not physically healthy so I can’t rush there to fix problems anymore. He has our oldest brother there who should help out whether he does or not, I don’t know.

    The best option for my mom, well, the two brothers there in town didn’t agree with it so they pretty much told the rest of us that they were taking the responsibility for her. Nothing more I can do. I know it hasn’t been easy for my brother who is the youngest, but it hasn’t been easy for the rest of us either who DID step in while he was still in school. He made a decision to stand by her and take on the responsibilty and well…even though he says he has taken responsibility he really hasn’t.

  17. My mother has been schizophrenic since I was 14. Up until then she was a wonderful mother. I practically raised my little sister and my older brother was hurt and therefore abusive emotionally and physically b/c of his hurt. My dad is very passive and took care of my mother the best he could but he couldn’t end the chaos with us children. He still can’t. My wedding shower is being planned by my best friend and my totally unsupportive family is not coming . Just my dad and my sister who is so angry that I do not want my mom there. I don’t want the questions or people to feel pity for me or her to have an episode. She will be invited to the reception only. When people are busy and having fun and not sitting around staring at her. (she is extremely unhealthy looking) obese, doesn’t bathe, toe-nails unclipped, and teeth rotted out. It pains me that she isn’t there enough. It pains me that my own family didn’t plan the shower that they insist she should be at…..i have no support or respect in this decision. It makes me keep a huge distance from them and for my own sanity I can’t fight with them. (it’s a couples shower) – my grandpa , grandma, brother, sister-in-law, are not coming due to “work or other things” So it’s my dad and sister. (my dad loves me unconditionally and i feel his love) but my sister when I texted her “are you excited about the shower” responded “yeah , but I can’t wait til it’s over” I just want to say to everyone…..don’t come …never come to anything….and no-one should shame me for not wanting mom there. what do you think

  18. No matter what she is still your mom.What if the roles were reversed?

  19. Take care of yourself Megan; do what feels right for you. It is hard enough to live without a mothering mother.

    As time goes by many of us with schizophrenic mothers end up taking care of our moms. Taking care of an ailing parent is tough, but most children remember how much their parent has done for them. The obligation is much tougher when there isn’t even a mother-daughter relationship.

    Learn to find the humor. My sisters and I say that if we don’t laugh we will only cry.

    When it comes to the actual wedding events, think about hiring a aide for her for the day. This person can stick with her and keep her company. This helps to avoid the inappropriate things she might do. (Speeches to the crowd, peeing outside, losing her teeth, removing vital clothing – these are a few I can imagine my mom doing.) Having someone like this frees up your dad and sister so they can visit and enjoy the festivities too.

    Don’t let anyone make you feel guilty. Just love your mom the best way you can while still having your own life. She is doing the best she can too. Hopefully your sister will come to see that too.

  20. after dealing with a scizophrenic mom and being placed in foster homes …

    dealing with this now. i am the father of a 16 yr old
    her mom is scizophrenic as far as we can tell. my daughter moved in with me after years of neglect and abuse, we thought things were better then but her mom showing up ,she lost her housing and is living on the streets, I bring her in and let her sleep on the floor in the hallway,but she is showing up every day for food ,cash , dirty and smelly, often showing hostility, talking nonsense, its scary, dont know if she will eventually get violent,

    its a conflict of just letting her knock and go away and feel horrible for her or bring her in and we suffer,

    there is no help for these things anymore, i think in the old days they would get forced into the mental homes now it seems they dont forcce them, and the sick person doesnt know they are sick to volunteer to go in ….

  21. Today was the last straw.

    Its funny. I am about to turn 21 (on Friday actually) but I am looking back on my years and I cannot seem to remember anything. My head feels like mash potato.

    My Mum is a Schizophrenic and has been from a very young age. She was abused by her Father which lead to depression/anorexia which then escalated into schizphrenia.
    Now her Mother is dying of cancer and I can’t imagine the messed up buisness going on in her head mixed with the grief. She keeps saying that none of us understand what she is going through when we do. I feel like saying to her ‘I have watched you dying over the years’ But I am never allowed to say anything because she just thinks I am blaming her. My Dad is wonderful but he has dealt with this for far too long. My 2 little brothers just get pushed aside and told to go and play xbox or watch movies when in a few years time they will have to deal with this stuff me and my older sister deal with. I want to move out but feel racked with guilt and would constantly worry about leaving my brothers. My Dad says there is nothing any of us can do to change her. I know that. I think I have always just dreamt of a day where I can say my Mum is just like your Mum. Shes not though. I think its really hard to find someone to talk to in this situation. You can talk to your family until you are blue in the face but sometimes its better to talk to a stranger or even just type on this forum just to get of it out. No one can understand unless they go through it.

    Its nearly Christmas/my 21st and my Granny is dying. Its not been a good year.. thats for sure. Now we have to make the decision on weather to put Mum in hospital or not.

    Florence

  22. yes ,thats is hard,at least you have some siblings and a dad for support. where you are do they have like housing for menatlly ill? my mom was in a nice housing situation in maryland , (usa) and i could live my life normally, until i marries a scizophrenic unknowingly and my kid had to go through it,any way s o you rmom has too younger kids? but doesnt the dad live with them?if he was with them you could move and he could protect them?

    • She isn’t dangerous or anything. My brothers are totally safe. Right now its just really hard because of the holidays coming up and everyone is getting exicted and I am dreading it now. I love Christmas but its so tough to try and enjoy everything with this in the back of our mind. She is in hospital just now but the doctors just let her out as some sort of reward for bad behavour? nice deal they have going on there. She stops taking her meds… lets let her out for the day.

      So much pressure.

  23. Well, well, well… I sympathize with you all but my story – I don’t even know where to start! So, my mom is a schizophrenic and I live all of my life never knowing until a year ago or so. ( I’m 20 now). When I was smaller she always used to curse my sisters talking about this old handbag sh*t; (meaning that someone left you with their bad habits,etc). I also saw that someone in this blog mentioned about being NEGATIVE. I think that word almost describes my mom completely. She’s always looking at he worst case scenario and talks about more thorns being there in life than roses. However, I managed to enjoy my childhood since I didn’t know the extend to which she was ill. All I knew was that she stopped working. I used to wonder why my dad used to be to upset and lack patience dealing with us. But now I certainly know why. What depresses me the most about my mom is that sometimes i know she knows much better. She acts like an angel, the sweetest little thing when friends are around. She knows how to act in public. Her doctors probably suck at their prescriptions because she seems oh so sane to them. Yet, she always chooses the opportune time to throw her tantrums. Most times, she only does it when my sister my father and I are at home. She’s much concerned about herself and tries to use her illness as an excuse to do sh*t. For example she’ll say: ” I done do enough good things in my life. I don’t need to be nice anymore. [occasional suicidal thoughts] And only if I die, you all will finally learn how to get along and appreciate me!” Yep, she dwells in self praise. The complication is that daddy’s been having a tough time dealing with the illness and he cheated on her and has a kid. He denies that the kid is his yet this whole cheating story certainly sets her off into ocassional tantrums. For example she will call him at work almost several times in one day. And go up to his workplace. A time she even went to his boss. And this is the thing that drives daddy up the wall. When she’s upset with him she always want us [my sisters and I] to agree with her and be upset with him even though she is wrong 99% of the times. We try to be considerate and most times fake to be on her side yet she turns around accuses you. For example, recently she claims I hold a prejudice against her. You can’t convince her otherwise. She looks at us several times and says that we are daddy’s kids and we are on his side like baby scorpions just waiting to sting her. If thats not bad enough, a few months ago my sister had to leave work crying and find devil’s bridge because mom threatened to drive herself over. It’s just so crazy and I grew up believing every word she said cause most people tell you to listen to your mother. I was not allowed to go out or to go by friends or bring them over when I was younger. Everything has been kept a secret – except for the neighbours hearing all the noise from her constant arguments to infinity! I’m fed up and sometimes I just write her off in my mind because ever so often she threatens to kill herself and I can’t manage the suspense. Well I hope someone reads this and could offer advice if possible. Thanks for your time taken to read this. Peace out!

  24. I am 21 years old and my mom is schizophrenic. Its hard to help her because she refuses to take the medicine and is pariniod of my brother and I. I love her so much and it breaks my heart to see her destroy her life. One thing that helps me is distancing myself from her problems and spending some times with my friends. It doesnt make the setuation better just more managable for me to help her better because I will get more joy out of life. I am her sole caregiver because she pushed everyone else away. I would walk through fire to help her but the sad thing is that there is nothing I can do for her but sit and watch her get worse. She wont take the medicine and the doctors can make her take them. I wont EVER give up on her or leave her side and I dont think you should EVER stop helping your parent. After all they gave you life. You just might want to set bounderies so that you can have a life too.

    I know it is hard to deal with a mom who is mean and scary sometimes but I am proff that it can work out. I will pray for you all. Please pray for my mom. Remember that helping your parent is a privilage because it means that you are serving gods wishes.

  25. I grew up with a schizophrenic mom and can relate to all of your stories..the delusion, the paranoia, the hurtful words.

    The recent shooting of Gabrielle Giffords and profiling of her potentially schizophrenic killer made me realize that no-one talks about this mental illness and there are very few resources for children of schizophrenic parents, especially if you’re supporting them financially.

    When I was raising my schizophrenic mom at the age of 10, the internet didn’t exist and there were NO resources out there. No-one talked about the illness. My mom was in and out of mental institutions and jail. I was responsible for this CRAZY person and felt so alone.

    I hope that this recent tragedy will bring light to this dark, strange, and mysterious illness and create more resources for those needing emotional, financial, and spiritual support.

    Kat, thebreakupguide.com

    • I agree no one talks about schizophrenia. This make me angry when I was dealing with this in the late 70 through the 90’s.. My mother was released from the state hospital and I was told nothing. I picked her up after 3 months and they open the door and said good bye. The drive home was an hour, and we almost got in a car accident because of all the drama on the way home. I was 21 and would have liked to know what to expect. My Dad would take my brother and I to the hospital to visit our mother no one ever asked how we were doing. Not once. Reading the blog make me think no much has changed.

  26. Its really comforting to know that i am not the only one with a schizophrenic mom. It really hurts when see my friends with their moms or even my aunt with her son.It’s like they love their kids so much. They ask them about how their day was, get them something to eat and love them. I never got that. I had to do my own work as well as all the household chores after my sister left. It started when i was 12 and it is still continuing. I need to finish all the household chores, take care of my mom, keep track of her every action and see that nobody says anything to her that hurts her emotionally coz that would end up with my mom getting depressed and angry.I think hundred times before saying anything cos she may take it in the wrong way ang go crazy. I just wish i had a normal life.
    Its sad to see that there are kids out there who are really troublesome and give their parents and everyone a hard time and still get loved and there’s me who does everything perfectly and still can’t get my mom to love me.
    I have an elder sister.She got married some years back. It was a lot easier when she was around. We both could atleast cry together and do the housework together. When she visits us now, its not the same thing,you know. cos now whenever my sister visits and my mom gets an attack and starts shouting , i know that she’s gonna go back to her house and its me who’s got to deal with it.
    My dad was very patient when it all started and he used to get her to calm down. But now a days, he gets tensed whenever she gets paranoid and even he starts shouting and they fight. and that makes me really sad. But you know what they say about kids who have a schizophrenic parent have a higher chance of getting it- i know that’s not true cos no matter what i would never ever let the people around me feel the way my mom made us feel.
    I can’t really write down how i feel right now,it’s too awful. I feel insecure and unlucky.There’s one part of the world where people search for books on how to be a better parent and there’s all of us finding a way to cure our parents.It is so frustrating to see and hear about love and not get it.
    I just hope she gets better.

  27. I wanted to google “my mom is schizophrenic” and as soon as i had typed “my mom is… ” it started displaying “my mom is amazing” and “my mom is the best mom in the world.” I wish i was lucky enough to google things like that instead of my mom is schizophrenic.
    When people get awards and say that it’s because of their mom, i feel really sad. It makes me feel like i would have been a better and successful person if my mom had not been a schizophrenic. I might have loved life if she had loved me.
    I try to find faults within myself as to why she doesn’t love me and then, i realise that its not me, it’s the disease.
    But you know my sister had come back to live with us for few months cos her husband had gone out for some work.It was for 8 months and she didn’t get mad or angry even once during that time. And when the time for her to leave came, it all started again. I don’t know, maybe she loves her more than me and that makes me even more sad. But mom s are supposed to love their kids equally right.I feel like i am one of the most lonely persons in the world.

    I have a lot of friends but no best friends. Because i never felt like bringing my friend to my house cos of my mom’s condition and i couldn’t hang out much due to the same reason. and lastly, i never got too close to anybody myself. So, i sometimes just don’t get the point of living.
    I think at times, that I am gonna stop being like this and stop caring about my mom and have a lot of fun but i end up being miserable again.To have someone you love suffer with schizophrenia is like a curse. You don’t want to hate them but what they do makes you feel like hating them.

    My mom today, told me straight to my face that she doesn’t care about me or anyone when i tried to stop her from shouting. That’s when i realised that anything i do is never gonna matter. Cos i don’t influence her thoughts at all. She doesnt care or love me at all.
    thank god i found this site. it makes me feel really better.
    and yeah i passed a really tough exam.i got the result today and all my mom could do was say nothing and later get paranoid on some random thing (today her reason was that my grandma who lives with us told her some story and that that’s why she was upset) and say she doesnt love me.
    I don’t even know why i try to make her happy.

    • sen said:::””to have someone you love suffer with schizophrenia is like a curse. You don’t want to hate them but what they do makes you feel like hating them.””

      WELL SAID !!

      ,I am glad you said that ,that is exaclty how it is, “damned if you do damned if you dont “as the saying goes . thankyou

      Doug

  28. I am the same Jessica from the comment in December. So this is an update.

    My mom is FINALY taking medicine. It was a LONG road filled with TONS of pain to get her to this point. She is now nice and kind but even with meds she still believes some of the paranoid thoughts she had she just doesn’t have new ones. Its weird getting to this middle good point were she is at because I was so used to being in hell dealing with her. She was mean and cruel but manly just depressed and anxiety ridden from her paranoid thoughts. I know have guardianship of her which is a lot for a 20yr old to have. I do have my own issues from dealing with her and being emotionally scared but I suppose all kids with mentally ill parents do. I didn’t believe that we would get to this point especially because three months ago she was doing REALLY REALLY BAD. I guess you have to face the worse before you can get better. Now she tells me that she loves me and I can believe her. I would never have dreamed that day would come. I now have a lot of long and interesting stories to one day share with people its just to bad that it will probably be with a counselor because its difficult shit. I do feel like I am a stronger person but I also feel like this whole experience makes me cynical of the world and realize that things can go south quick. Thinks seem to work out but I am stressed all the time though because now I am dealing with lawyers and legal stuff because I am the guardian of her. I thought it would be easy and make my life easier so that when she went to the hospital again because of not taking meds she will get on them quickly. However its makes everything complicated becaues the courts are involved. Expenses are through the roff though. Well I will leave another update but it is cool to vent. For all of you out there just know that I care for you and know exactly what you have gone through and it sucks. You should still have a life. I am still at the point were I realize that I too need a life and distace from her and that is ok. I worry about her though luckily my dad is helping me out. He is a saint. I did learn though this that EVERY one has issues with there parent or major issues in there life ours may be dealing with a schizophrenic mom but others believe it or not might be much worse. I learned that I need to open my eyes to the fact that I am lucky for all that I have and I need to focus on what I have and not the perfect mom that I don’t have. I hope that it helps just know that things will get better. Believe it or not. Oh and if things get to bad you can always get a mental health warrant to force your parent to receive help. Only if they are a danger to them self or others but sadly that time usually comes for schizophrenics. Its hard to do but it can help them.

    I am interested in knowing how long your parent has had schizphrenia. My mom had it for 5 yrs.

    I am also interested in knowing the worst thing that ever happended dealing with your parent.

  29. HI congradulations Jessica, how did you manage to get your mom to TAKE the meds?

    I hope at your age you get plenty of fun time, breaks from her , share (with siblings?) the burdens. i havent been out here and will read and up date i hope.

    i had a sciz mom (now deceased) and the mom of my teen daughter is prob sciz,she is homeless ,hence living in my apt alot, sleeps here every night in my hallway,i really dont want her here, i cant get “on with my life’ and she can steal things,so have to watch her all the time, feed her,etc telll her to bathe.plus i work 40 hours and have my teen daughter…………at least there is nt any fighting or drama that gt loud so its prety quiet, i can read or be on the pc or watch dvd or play my guitar,……Doug

  30. I’m 54 years old. I too have no memory of my mother before she was sick with schizophrenia. She has been dead these past 3 years, and I have no good memories of her.

    I can go on and on about all of this. Those who claim “The mentally ill are not dangerous.” are not realistic. I have never been around my mother when I was not on guard against her unpredictable violence. Even when I was in the USMC as a young man, I still was very careful not to turn my back or trust her. My mother lived with my grandmother for much of my life. My grandmother had her own mental illness that was, in itself, destructive and dangerous. Nice.

    Even with medication, the schizophrenia I know declares that “I have no problem. You do!” It says “I have not caused massive and long ranging problems with myself. my parents, my, children, my relatives, and my friends.” Since my mother seemed to be immune to this “realization”, I could not persuade her to get treatment beyond what she was forced to get when I was 7. If you mentioned doctors to her or mental illness or medications, you had better run. You were in for a thorough beating with what was handy. Sometimes it was a broom handle. Sometimes it was with a heavy steel ladle, shovel, board, whatever was within reach.

    No, mentally ill are really just misunderstood and not dangerous at all.

    JF

  31. I am the same Jessica as in the above comments just a little happier.

    I agree they are dangerous. I know my mom was dangerous. Thanks to meds now she want hurt a fly but if she goes off there is no telling what she could do. My dad moved out when she was ill because she became very dangerous.

    My mom would also refuse medicine and be very mean if I even asked her to take it. It was only after two months in the hospital that she would even begin to understand that she has a problem and that she needed them and that they can help her. I love her but it is only because of god that she is alive and were she is today. I felt like trying to help her get better was like trying to swim up the steepest waterfall ever. It was an impossible fight to get her to voluntarily take meds and even more impossible to convince the doctors or state that she needs them forced on her or she will die. Its the saddest thing in the world to see a beautiful intelligent woman be destroyed by herself. Its even harder knowing that it doesn’t have to be that way because there is medicine available to help her. Yet the law and doctors have made it impossible for her to get treatment because god knows that a person who is not thinking rashanoly wont voluntarily take medicine. The law and doctors should make it easier for schizophrenics to get treatment forced on them when they truly need it because they are unable to make a good smart choice. Its more than that its wrong on every level to allow them to suffer with their illness. My mom needed help in a bad way and all the times she went into the mental hospital she was never really helped except the last time but even that was only because I spent all the money I had to get guardianship for her. The law and doctors would have sent my mom home again without meds and with out helping her because she refused medicine.

    I am now moving on with my life and dating a wonderful man who wants to marry me and all that wonderful stuff. However, I haven’t told him about my mom and that I am her guardian because I don’t want him to run away. Its the type of illness which is devastating for everyone near it and I am afraid that he would realize it and want to not have that burden of helping me deal with my mentally ill mom. So I am avoiding the subject.

    I read what someone wrote somewhere above in the comments and they said that they spent their whole life taking care of their schizophrenic mom that they never got married or had a life or kids. I know without a doubt how easy it would be to get so obourbed in dealing with her shit that I wouldn’t have a life. It’s scary to think how easy it would be. I know that I deserve to be happy too and so do all of you. Life is what we make it so let’s make it right. LOL That’s a Miley Cyrus song. Keep it real Yall. Someone tell me if I write to much or if I should just keep my comments to myself. Let me know what you all think.
    Peace out tell next time I talk to much. LOL

    ps: Laughter is the best medicine. If you don’t laugh you cry. RIGHT

  32. I’m 39 years old and have been raised by a mother with schizophrenia. Growing up I had no idea I thought I was the problem because my mother dirrected all the abuse tward me. My younger brother could do no wrong. I was not aloud to be alone with my father my mom would get so jelouse, tell me I was a dirty girl for liking my dad that way. Looking back she was abused when young and I got all the pain from it. My mothers family knew what she had and never told my dad what he was dealing with. The first time my mother was put into a hospital was in her early teens, she was in and out until the day she turned 18 and left. Not long after she met my dad and they were married. Not a person in the family told my dad that she needed extraa care or what to do. The family just left us to sink alone. I can not forgive them for that, knowing my dads heart he still would have married her because they are together still he will never leave. The abuse my dad and I hacve gone through is just simply cruel. My brother for some reason was never miss treated by my mother. One thing I wish I knew what was going on before I had children myself (I have 3) I never would have. I worry every day that this will hit my children or that I will start to develop it. This has affected how I see the world and “negative” is a way of life for me. When you are raise by some one that can not say one nice thing to you, or you are always loosing family friends and even my first marriage because of my mother and schiztophrenia you look at life and always brace for the worst. Now at 39yrs old and still can’t feel that I or my children are safe from getting it. I’m angry and depressed. My 2nd husband of 10yrs (today) is understanding but he is the only person that I trust in life. I live in fear of what is to come next…

  33. My first post was done while being emotional after reading some of the blogs of others. I went back and re-read my post and just wanted to add or make a few things clear. I want touch on the relationship with my dad. I never had one growing up. I do now after being out of the house and sharing with my dad the pain that I lived with as a kid. A lot of things were held from my dad he never knew most of the things my mom did or said to me. My mother would have me go to my room when my dad got home from work and not to come out till she was ready. I don’t think my dad knew that things were bad at home he was so consumed by my mother and her need for his full attention that besides work he had little time for anything or anybody else. One of the downfalls of how I was raised was I have no relationship with my brother infact he dose not like me or the family. Growing up we were played against each other never equal. After my brother was older and my mothers condition is worse he has nothing to do with anybody in the family he had no bond with my dad because my mom kept him all to herself for as long as she could till he left home as a teen. So as my mother gets older she is harder to deal with. After the age of 45 my mom started to have to be forced into a hospital to get back onto meds this was due to her being a danger to herself and my dad. My mother has tried to burn down the house and has beat or thrown anything she can at my father. To get my mom treatment I always had to go to court to take her rights away and show up with the police and EMS. Let me tell you that is not easy when you have always been the child she never wanted. Yes I have been told this many times I was suposed to be a boy she never wanted a girl. Growing up was hard I did not know how to do my hair like other girls or take care of the personal stuff. I remember times being teased because I had hair on my legs and undermy arms. I had no clue you were supose to shave. When I started to have my period That was even worse, by this time I knew a little and stold my moms stuff to use until she found out. Still even then I did not get any info or tips just in trouble for using her stuff and not telling her. Make up never show or any other things that makes being female so special. So going to school and feeling like you fit was hard I never dated and friends were not something that I kept for long. My mom always freaked them out. Not a single friend I did have wanted to come to my house they all did not like my mom. It was at this time in my life I realized that the way my mom was is not the way other girls moms were. This is when I started to get angry about how I was treated I started to stick up for myself to her, this made thing worse at home. The thing that makes me so upset is that schizophrenia is so serious it needs to be under control. So many people in my moms family knew what she had and seen that things were starting to go bad and never help. My mom was so good at hiding what she was going through in her head while I was growing up, so we just thought she was emotional and angry. Also I saw more of her true self then anyone else. I remember as a kid thinking she was 2 people the person she was to me and the person she was to everybody else. It was not until my mom got older we first were given a title to are life and to this day my mother dose not except or believes it. She relapses all the time for some reson the winter months are always the worst. And I’m always the person that has do the ugly thing of getting her put back into hospital. This is because if my dad did it he would have a hard time living with her after, even after the meds kick in she never forgets what happen plus the hospital puts it in writing and gives it to her I think that is so unsafe because I forever know that my mother has a hate for me now that makes my childhood look normal. I do question If I will ever be like her or my children (2boys and 1girl). I read everything I can and still don’t know what odds are for us. So at this time I do not have “it” nor do my children but schizophrenia has been a part of what I am today because thats what raised me. It can be a hard life. At 39 I’m still trying to put it all together and understand it without hate. I don’t hate my mom because she did not ask to have schizophrenia Its just hard to have to keep getting hurt by her because if it were not for me and my dad she would have nobody. Funny the 2 people she hurt the most are the only people she has in the world. Sometimes I think we never ran like the rest is because we only know abuse. It’s are life…

  34. I also grew up with a schitzophrenic mother. She is now 82 years old and either showing signs of dementia or she is stuck in a premanent paranoid mode. I found out on my 21st birthday( I am 41) when my father took me out for lunch. He told me everything, I thought everybody’s mother treated them that way. 2 weeks later my father died. I have been trying to take care of my mother ever since. It is worse now than ever before. I am adopted and she is Japanese. this makes things a little more difficult. She refuses to let me help her and we get in to arguments. So I worried my self sick about her for a long time. It was affecting evey aspect of my life, from my family life to work. I finally broke down at work one day, and decided to give it to the lord. I can’t help her. I can’t fix her and I am tired of trying to.
    I Love my mother but I also hate her, Being given up at birth and adopted when I was 2 I feel loyalty to her for adopting me, I feel like I am obligated to love her. I missed out on 2 mother’s love. My adoptive mother never hugged me told me she loved me or ready me bed time stories. How can you love someone who has never loved you. It is hard. I am an only child, She has no one on her side of the family in the states and my fathers family desserted her right after the funeral. So I felt it has been up to me.

    Since I can remember about age 2 or 3 I have taken the brunt of her accusations and of course I still am. I do not talk to her much she calls me when she thinks I stole something of hers. Now she has her friends(JApanese) calling me about fights we supposedly had. I really don’t know how much more I can take. I am at my wits end. I want to help her but I know I can’t.

    My “Escapes” were school, my father, my grandparents, and my best friend who lived down the street, I tried to stay out of the house for as long as I could, everyday. But when she would have an episode My father would be at work and that is when things would get bad at home, I was always too afraid to tell my father or my grandparents. I guess I was afraid things would get worse. hey were bad enough as it was.

    Thank you for letting me vent. I wish everyone going through this the best of luck and my prayers for you.

  35. Wow ! I came to tears as I read this blog & some of the

    stories here. I also grew up with a mother who suffered

    from Schizophrenia. As I walk down this scary & painful

    memory lane, I recall when my mother came up to my

    school. I was in the 1st grade. She had one shoe on &

    it was cold outside she got my attention & told me to come

    out in the hall where she was standing. I went out in the

    hall & she told me the devil was trying to get her. (tears)

    I had to reassure my mother (a grown woman) that she

    was going to be ok & go back home. Keep in mind I was in

    the first grade. That is only ONE of SO MANY times when

    my mother flipped out. She was in & out of the hospital

    my whole childhood. Sometimes I thought I had a normal

    mother only to wake up to find out she was admitted back

    in the hospital. I lost trust in her so many times because

    she would get better only to go back in the hospital

    because of her constant outrages.

    I remember coming home from school & I see all of our

    living room furniture was in the front yard. All my friends

    saw this. I hated/loved her. I was so d** confused.

    Now I am 33 years old. I do not deal with my mother.

    I tried to help her so many times. I just prayed & asked

    God to help her because I couldnt do it anymore.

    She drained emotionally, physicall, mentally etc. I love

    my mother I really do, but to keep my own sane mind

    I had to let her go. I talk to her from time to time & I will

    take her to the store, but thats it ! I can’t do anything

    for her because she doesn’t feel like anything is wrong with

    her. Like, is she serious? I mean I’m 33, she has been

    dealing with this illness for as long as I can remember.

    I mean I just can’t & I’m at a point now to where I don’t

    feel bad anymore because she makes me feel as if she

    doesnt care that she has emotionally drained me.

    So to all of you here who read this & to all of you who

    post here, my heart truly goes out 2 you guys.

    I feel your pain. Even though I am grown now, I am still

    suffering from the past pain that my mom caused in my life.

    I don’t want to sound like I am blaming her for my issues

    right now today, but geesh ! I went through a hell of a

    lot as a kid. Some things I should not have gone through.

    Sincerely,

    RB

  36. I posted a few months back. Just a little update –

    So my Grandma passed away a couple of weeks ago and obvioulsy with my Mum being a schizophrenic its affecting her in a different way. She is still trying to process it. She used to read all the time and shes not .She is staring into space and freaking me out. I cannot keep up with the housework. I really think I am going to have to hire a cleaner but they will take one look at the place and run away.

    I have told my work that I am pretty much playing Mum at home and they just tell me to call a councellor. I am 21 and living my life like its the end.

  37. My mother is now 73 years old. She disowned me when I was 18. She divorced my father and ran off with my 6 year old sister to Florida. She held down a full-time job and looked after my sister fairly well. But she was not a well woman. About 15 years ago, she lost her job and came back home and landed in the hospital for a couple of weeks. She was diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic. I could not deal with her, as she obviously still had a lot of comtempt for me. All these years, I have been the one watching my Dad suffer with trying to get back on his feet financially from the divorce. She drained the bank account before she took off for Florida.
    I have been there for him through car accidents, various serious illnesses, etc. He is now 83 years old and I keep an eye on him. Housecleaning, doctor visits, etc. Her family (sisters) do not think very highly of me. They don’t know how I’ve always sacrificed for my own children and Dad. I am sorry for her illness, but can now see the hell she put us through the last few years we were a family. I hope to have a relationship with her soon, as she is alone living in a retirement-type apartment. And she is on medication I believe suits her. She seems to want a relationship now. I am somewhat afraid of her. But I remember my younger years as being ok. No affection, but she functioned quite well
    at the time. This disease robs people of their potential. It is so unfair. She was once a great cook, good mother, and did her part financially. It killed my father to lose her. I believe it hurts him to this day to have lost the once good life partner he had. And my father, sister and I all get judged by people who do not understand her illness. They don’t know how brutal and unfeeling she can be. She has had a hard life and I am in a way in awe of her. A survivor, to be sure.

  38. Thank you for letting me know im not the only one facing these kind of situation. Glad to know that im not the only one thinking that maybe my mother is faking it. i though im not suppose to feel that way but then she show all the sign of malingering too.i don’t know what to think. She even cause and fuel the fight between me n my sister. somehow i know she’s on her way to poison other ppl in my family by turning them against me n my dad.my poor father have been suffering the most.she even go as far as create lie that both of me n my father know it never happen to gain ‘something’ from us. tell me how should i feel?

  39. I grew up with a mother was diagnosed with schizophrenia. It was the most complicated thing that I’ve had to endure. Now, I understand that it cannot be easier for her either, but sometimes I feel it’s just so unfair that she was able to do what she wanted with her life (get married, have kids, party, do her drugs, etc) and my sister and I have to deal with her constant misbehavior and pity-type conversations. I moved out of my house about 4 years ago in an attempt to get away from her, but even now, for my sister and me, its a constant struggle. Lately, we’ve been considering putting her in a shelter or a home of some sort because we’re tired of having to pick up her mess and practically baby-sit her. My sister and I constantly get scrutinized from her side of the family saying that we’re awful children because we barely visit her or call her. It’s not that we don’t want to, it’s just that every single time we try to make a visit or call her on the phone it’s either my uncle complaining that he has to put up with her and he threatens to leave, or it’s my mother complaining that she doesn’t have cigarrettes or any money and starts to cry. I’m fed up with the whole thing because this really has taken a complete toll in my life. My sister, however, since she’s younger is now starting to realize how daunting it’s been taking care of her. I know that I would be doing the right thing in putting her in the care of a facility that handles ppl like her, it’s just the other members of the family that I don’t want to deal with. I mean, she is my mother, and if she’s ill and incapable of taking of herself, I should be able to get her a better living situation even if its under the care of doctors. I know she won’t have the freedom she does now, but I need my sanity and my freedom because I’ve endured more than enough with this woman. My sister can’t stand her anymore, and I’ve just about given up on her as well. I love her, but she’s really made it impossible for me to be able to focus on the things that I want in life…

  40. First of all, thank you to all of you for sharing your lives, enduring the bad and painful times next to your ill parents. I’m almost 60 years old and my only child, my daughter of 27 years old is schizophrenic for the last 6 years. She has 2 beautiful and wonderful 2 children… 8 & 6. They live with me since their father left them 5 years ago. She (my daughter) doesn’t accept her illness and most of the time refuses her meds. As you already know, her violent episodes are really bad. We live under constant fear, depression, violence and lots of mess! I am burned out financially and emotionally, her attacks are mainly towards me most of the time because “I’m taking her kids away from her”.
    I landed in this blog because I’m so worry about my grandchildren, they are already suffering the physical and emotional abuse from her illness. I protect them with own body and of course the kids know that, since they come running to me for help. I’m so worry and broken heart to just think on what is going to happen to them in the future if I’m not there for them… the burden that is coming when they are adults… just reading all of these sad stories makes it worst… is a reality… I almost cry for all of you! The police and children servc. had been in my house tons of times (I called them) , I guess this is the only reason that I can control some situations at times. Right now I’m dealing with the father’s request for custody… should I help my daughter to keep the children? or let go… I know is not up to me, but I can help to either situation… I guess I just decided to let go… maybe is better for the children to be with their beat-dead-dad.
    I just want to say one more thing… to all of you that suffer not only because of the illness consequences, but believing that your ill mom or dad doesn’t love you… IS NOT true, they DO LOVE YOU! I see my daughter crying and kissing her children when they sleep, I can see her frustration at times that I guess she’s aware of what is going on with her… and she’s desperate of losing her children, but I know she hurts them very much and they need their own “happy” life away from her. I don’t know about the future, but at the present I’ll protect the kids even from my own daughter… very painful and sad. God bless all of you, I’ll say a prayer to easy our pain for the ones we love and care so much, even though they hurt us so much!

  41. Wow, I feel practically speechless. So many of the things you all have shared, I felt like I had written myself. This is a devastating illness and it breaks my heart. Like some of you have pointed out, there doesn’t seem to be very many resources for the children of parents with Schizophrenia. Reading all of these stories made me understand that I am not alone. I am 26 and my mom has had Schizoaffective disorder ever since before I was born (Schizophrenia plus severe manic/depressive mood swings). She was in/out of hospitals and on/off meds my whole life. She has tried to take her life quite a few times. My first memories about her illness start from the time I was in first grade. I have 2 sisters, and instead of having a mom to raise us, we had to raise ourselves AND our own mom. All the trauma of that, plus the trauma of an abusive father, being “homeschooled” (ie. babysitting mother), and a religious cult that exacerbated the problems, has contributed to giving me a severe case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I am finding healing, but seeing all these stories makes me realize how much I had stuffed away my emotions just to survive. Thanks for sharing your stories. Again, it helps me to know that I am not alone. You are not alone either. And I look forward to the day when science can shed some light on this hellish illness.

  42. Thanks for this blog. Now for the 1st time in 27 years of my life i had this revelation that my mother is schizophrenic. I was always in denial mode that my mother is not so and that she had suffered so much in life that sometimes she reacts so strong and negative. And this blog also consoled me that i am not alone in this world with this emotionally wrenching problem. I have a set of very not-at-all-cooperative relatives and neighbours who by their gestures and vocal tones makes it clear that my mom is ‘mad’ which by and her as schizophrenic and the condition deteoriated slowly and gradually. Like Matt said emotional and intellectual poverty aggravated the problem. I could never share my emotional trauma with anyone and when i did share witlarge shoved her towards the edge of total breakdown. I have grown up with h a so-called ‘best friend’ of mine when i was in college, it just backfired as she was not only not-understanding but gave all this to an ugly twist. i was back to square one with more problems as everyone else of my aquaintance now knows that my mom is a ‘lunatic’, courtesy my ‘best friend’! I never did talk about her to anyone in my wildest nightmare ever but sharing here anonymously will help me to cope with myself and heave my heart of the baggage.

    My mom has pretty much the same symptoms shared by all of you. She yells at others at the top of her voice, even yells at barking dogs which makes everything quite embarassing; makes close ones feel guilty for her; poisons happy air with negativity so much so that it kills the very soul of optimism and happiness leaving me crying profusely in my locked room. Being the only child it has severely affected my mental health. when i was young, i didn’t understand too much and i could carry well with my studies and also household chores because she could not do much. There were days when i had to keep my book in front of stove and study and cook simulteneously. the only thing i am thankful to God that she loves me a lot but that too so intensely that she hates anybody who gets close to me. But i also had my bountiful share of abuses. She thinks that everybody else tries to harm me, including my father. It is suffocating and as is anyone’s guess i do not bring any friends at home and have very few friends. I never had any boyfriend till this day. My only friend has been books, a loyal friend i must say, and recently internet (its goodness, well, depends on my way i use it). So, i have always been living on an isolated island totally cut-off from society. I also felt guilty talking about her to others as i felt that this will only make people think that i do not love my mom and also feared negative remarks from them about her.

    But as i grew old, i am a late bloomer, my hormones kicked in when i was in my late teens i considered her as a pain-in-the-neck. I loved her but still hated her for her being a loon who have messed up my life. I wanted a boyfriend but my lack of social skills didnt allow to be so. And high school study pressure is not a less impediment. Everything together – schizophrenic mom, family feud, competing classmates, lack of true friend, hormones, study pressure…- created a whirlpool and sucked me in. I turned obese, looked ugly, my study so severely affected that i failed in my 1st year of college thus lost a year of study, changed stream to Arts, my marks-graph took a deep dip down. For my sheer love of books, i dragged on with my studies wiith little time found for self-study as i had to devote substantial time to household chores. But, my marks did not improve much, completed my masters at 25 years of age, painfully had to extinguish my hope of pursuing PhD as my not-so-flattering marks won’t allow. Now, myself with all the problems above plus newly gained arthritis is not only pain-in-the-neck but pain-in -the-whole-body. Everything all the more bitter because relatives accuse me to fuelling her abnormality as i never resisted her of doing anything as if my resistance could cure and not make her more engrossed in that schizo-mesh! Life is so ironic, the people whom i never saw during my trying times now accuse me of nothing!

    How i wish to have been put in a boarding house, away from my mom, at least i could have finished my studies well and my life could have been less messed up. I also could have looked after her well enough according to my abilities because i know behind that frightful facade is the face of a loving mother, a caring wife.

  43. I am so very relieved to know that others have been there. My mother passed away 13 years ago. I am still living with the confusion that comes with growing up with the schizophrenia. Thanks for the blog

  44. Hi All

    Thank you for this. I to grew up and still am growing up with a schizophrenic mother.

    For some reason she picked me as her target in her psychotic period. The worst of which was telling the world that I was an 11 year old sleeping with my father. To make matters worse, I was also the survivor of abuse by another family member,and a neglectful alcholic father.

    Now she is an empty shell of the beautiful woman she was all those years ago. I have turned out pretty well though! The thing that gets to me most though is all the things I never had with her as a mother and wont have in the future.

    I think I have come to accept that she is sick, but how on earth do you let go of all those things that a mother is meant to offer, even being a grandmother one day….

    Man, I miss her.

  45. Like so many, I too am so glad that I found these posts. Each and every story has touched my heart, and I’m so glad to hear that I am not alone.

    My mom was always a little “odd.” I knew that growing up and I think my dad tried to hide a lot of it from me. But when I was 15 it got really bad. She had convinced herself that I was the ringleader of a vast worldwide conspiracy against her. In her mind, I had the house bugged. I was in communication with the President and had started the Iraq war to prove to her that she was a bad woman. Daily she would scream at me, begging me to stop. She would barrage me with questions about my clothing choices, because the colors of my shirts all meant SOMETHING, though she couldn’t quite figure out what. It was compounded by the fact that I was home-schooled, so there was quite literally no way to escape. And she was always worse when my dad wasn’t around. She used to write down every license plate number she saw during the day, because of course, they were a code that she had to break. I remember the first time I realized this, I had accidentally bumped her purse off of the couch and it fell open with its contents strewn on the ground. The only thing she had in her purse was series of letters and number written on bits of paper. She also listed everything I did during the day, since in her eyes I was the enemy. She refused to touch me. She made me feel as if I was dirty, and everything I did had a dirty connotation in her mind. I, consequently grew up very unsure of myself. I ate very little, as my weight was the only thing in my life that I felt capable of controlling. My life was a deep, dark, pit. And I was embarrassed of it.

    I wanted to fix her. I tried everything. Yelling at her, cussing at her, pleading with her, crying, screaming, nothing worked. The only time she would come back briefly was when I laughed at her. The she would laugh and say “I do sound silly, don’t I?” For a brief, beautiful, moment, I would have my mommy back. But it was always over very soon, and she would go back to hating me and crying. I could never help her, because in her mind she was quite literally perfect. I don’t think I’ve ever actually heard my mom admit to being wrong about ANYTHING my entire life.

    She refuses to take medicines. And though her illness isn’t as glaringly obvious these days (she has adapted to act less strange in people’s eyes without actually changing her paranoid worldviews) her life is sitting on the couch watching the news. Instead of writing down license plates, she studiously copies down everything that politicians say. That’s it. Day in and day out, she does the same thing. She has become impossible to even hold a conversation with, and visiting her tears my heart out every time. My dad, God love him, has done his best. He never left her, he even begged her to stay when in one of her darker moments she threatened to leave him. But he has given up. He no longer even mentions her illness or trying to get her help. He has started to become a facilitator for her insanity.

    As for me, shortly after graduating high school I left and joined the Army. I wanted to make sure that I was a strong person, because in my mind, my mother was the very definition of weak. My greatest fear was causing the same pain for my offspring that my mother caused me. Now, I have finished 5 years in the Army, am married to a great guy and pregnant with our first child. Oh, did I mention that I’m SCARED OUT OF MY MIND. I have never really forced myself to deal with the demons that come from having a schizophrenic parent aside from taking depression medications. Every day, I worry that I will become her, and that my child will become me. That worry sometimes feels like it takes over my life.

    But I am encouraged in knowing that even if the unthinkable occurs, I have the presence of mind to know that there is no shame in getting help. In fact, it is by far the most honorable thing that one could do. I can look at the future with confidence, knowing that I can not control my circumstances. I can only control how I respond to them. In a strange way, that is what my mom has taught me. And for that, I will always be grateful to her.

    To all of you who are young, and that nightmare is your everyday reality, know that you are not alone. Even when things seem darkest, and you are unsure of whether life is even worth living, know that life can be beautiful as well. Cling to the people around you who are sane and that care about you. Cling to the God that will never abandon you. I used to pray for a hug, because I went many years without getting one from my mother. Every time I did, I could literally feel God folding me in His arms. You are not alone!

  46. hey, these posts are so helpful. Im only 17 yrs old and my mom is schizophrenic. its just so hard dealing with her sometimes. ive found that reading these posts has helped me to realize that im not alone. Its always felt like i am alone because i live in a small town and im known as the girl with the crazy lady for a mom. my mom was barely diagnosed 2 yrs ago so basically my whole childhood she wasnt on any medication. because of her condition it caused her to abuse me physically and emotionally so i developed PTSD so i now have a severe panic disorder. I just recently moved back in with my mom and its been so hard because i know she doesnt mean it but she reminds me everyday just how much she hates me. she thinks im out to get her, that im telling her sisters stuff about her but im not!! i can tell her that till im blue in the face but its like talking to a wall! and now since im a senior in high school its time for me to apply for college and its hard for me to even consider not going to a school close by. my mom just keeps telling me over and over again “Your leaving me because you dont love me, you’ve never loved me thats why i dont love you”

  47. I have the utmost respect for my mother who lives with schizophrenia, I can not even begin to imagine what her life has been like for the pasr 38 years,she too has been in and out of hospital from time to time. On advice from a doctor and my father it was decide that my mother should live alone after my parents got divorced. She looked after herself and went through a period of about 12 years of relative stability,apart from financial support from me , she had noboby to rely on or to help her to do her daily shopping or run her own household. About five years ago her brother moved to the same town and now lives two streets away. Since he has started helping my mother she has been in hospital four times in the last four years. Now that there is a family member to help her she will not leave the house except for a monthly visit to the clinic to collect meds. As a child my mother was in a family unit and was admitted to hospital every year, the longest hospital stay was 13 months when I was about 8 or so. I try to visit about three to four times a year, I am however in regular telephone contact offering emotional support,most importantly I do not let myself be manipulated, everything I do are on my terms. In my mothers case it is in my sincere belief that she must continue to live on her own despite now being 65 years of age , it is also my sincere belief that despite being a schizophrenic my mother has a responsibility not to me but to herself to lead the best possible life for herself under her very difficuly psycological condition. A family and especially young children carry a tremendous emotional burden in such an environment and are placed in a very unfortunate position where their own personality development is hindered. This is something all family members must live with , some will adapt better than others , for me it has been difficult as with many others. My prayers go to all of you who have experienced what I have , we all get to grow up much quicker due to these challenges and our path in life is probaby more difficult because of the way look at ourselves. We must remember that we too have a life to live and we only get one shout at life, every day is precious. I am 44 years old, my mother has been ill for 38 years , she has been living alone for 24 years, my father and mom were together for 21 years.I love my mom for who she is , but I must also look after myself as I have a responsibility to myself and my wife, Married for 16 years together for 26 years and still madly in love.This is my story and the only reason I have written it is to highlight that children and families who have been exposed to a person with this illness also have a right to life. We will always be there to support our loved ones , we do not have to throw our lives away in the process though.

  48. Hi Maria

    Im not that much older than you, so not too long ago did have to think about the same things you have mentioned. I would not begin to tell you what would be best, because I’m still figuring this thing out.

    My mother has been on meds for some time so she no longer targeted me, also I became bigger and stronger than her, so I think could not pick on the weak link anymore. So things were “calm” for a few years before decisions had to be made. Yet as a teenager/young adult I had so much anger, resentment, pity even hatred at times to this woman. Being in the same household as her while I was at such a trying time in any persons life put an added strain on the relationship. It made me lose perspective.

    I graduated at the end of 2010 and have moved 600km away from my family home, where she lives. I did this because well this is where I got a job, but also I needed to be in a new enviroment. I think for the first time in a long time I actually missed her, I have always missed the woman she was, but I actually felt as if I wanted to see her as she is now.

    So I guess what Im saying is a lil distance wont hurt. Dont make a decision soley based on your mother, but sometimes physically being out of the situation allows for some perspective. Im not so angry anymore, I feel for her. I feel like I can breathe again.

    Goodluck :)

  49. I live with a Schizophrenic uncle and have so pretty much all my life. I understand that it really isn’t his fault at all, but sometimes it gets so bad that I just want to kill myself. Not literally of course. But he yells constantly, so loud and in the most annoying high pitched voice. Sometimes I can’t sleep. Other times I wake up at fucking 3 in the morning, or I’ll wake up several times during the night whenever he decides to brush his teeth ten goddamn times while yelling for who knows what reason. I wanted to go to college, but I’m kind of glad I didn’t. Getting any amount of work done with him yelling would be fucking impossible. Doesn’t help that my room is right next to his either. All day long whether I’m in the living room or in my room, it doesn’t stop. He’s just talking, or yelling….

    Right now he’s fucking yelling nonstop… he just doesn’t fucking shut up…

    • Thank you all for the posts. My mom also has schizophrenia. I deal with fear of getting it, embarassment of her behavior, not knowing how to help her, guilt (she is homeless)–I can’t imagine asking her to live with my husband and young children. She’s not violent, but I can barely keep up with work, kids, and housework. How can I take care of her? She won’t go on meds. She doesn’t eat enough. She doesn’t listen. She was super problamatic when I was young–showing up at school, making scences at any events I was in, she disappeared for a year or so when I was in high school. She also would go and do nutty things at my dad’s work. I worry if I bring her to be with me she is going to try to go to my kids’ schools or my work. She tried to kidnap me when I was young. I worry about the same thing for my kids.

      I sent a crisis team to help her. They said, “she doesn’t want our help.” They left. No one wants to help. I wish I could help her. She had a car (well two cars), an apartment, 40,000 of inheritance, in a year all gone. I feel guilty and worried.

      Some one mentioned that they attained guardianship of their mom. Anyone else know more about that?

      I wish there were real services to help people in this situation. Thank you!

  50. My mom was a schizophrenic, she died a few years ago, and I can relate with everyones’ comments and stories. I think I still look for a mother in most of my relationships. But I just wanted to say that my mother and sisters and I had a little bit of peace in her later years because during one of her “good” times I got her to give me control of her health matters. Through the local mental health clinic I had rights to get her treatments without going through committments and hospitilization. She was on a once a month shot of Haldol-if she missed the shot the center would let me know and I would go get her and take her for the shot. This stabililzed her like no other treatment we had tried. She was almost completely independant and nice to be around for about 10 years before she passed away. My sister’s children and my children loved her and she had a little peace in her life.

  51. Thank you all for sharing. I also grew up with a schizophrenic mother (I’m now 24). I never knew what it was, and I had always assumed that it was just the way she was.

    She was diagnosed with the illness last year and after being hospitalised and put through the system, she went on medication. For the first time that I can really remember in my life, we began to live in relative peace.

    Unfortunately, she has gradually stopped taking her medication and her psychotic symptoms are now reappearing. It seems to me that there is always a period where she keeps her paranoia inside, until it explodes all at once. Today was one such day, and I finally called the medical system again to get some external help.

    She told me that she is not going to my graduation because someone is telling her not to. Its something that I’ve really worked hard for all my life – partly in trying to make her happy as it was one thing that was so clearly important to her. I’m feeling terrible and I don’t know if we can get her to take medication voluntarily again. I really hope we can.

    I have a graduate offer next year to go work overseas for 9 months, which I really want to accept. My mother has said that she’ll be relieved to have me gone, she doesn’t want me around (she has disowned me quite a number of times already). I’m so worried about her because my father is a terrible carer, he’s completely oblivious and tries to ignore everything. It feels like I’ve been caring for my mother by myself forever and I really don’t know if I will go.

    I’ve also started a very stressful internship this week and I still have a final exam in 2 days. Guess I’ll just try to power my way through, like always.

    • Keep going, its what we do best is it not?

      I think you should go for the graduate offer. There comes a point where we can best serve our parents by serving ourselves. At least thats my view. Like your dad mine is also not a good caregiver, but I had to put me first, and I left home.

      Goodluck.

  52. I read your story and at first I thought you were my sister but we don’t have brothers. I am 41 and still struggling with the aftermath. I just had my mom here for thanksgiving imagining a wonderful visit but it has just left me back to the nervous wreck I was most my life. It was a very bad idea. She put me down the esteem I had mustered. I don’t know why I try.I don’t feel like I was a great mother either. What id my purpose?????

    • I read your story and at first I thought you were my sister but we don’t have brothers. I am 41 and still struggling with the aftermath. I just had my mom here for thanksgiving imagining a wonderful visit but it has just left me back to the nervous wreck I was most my life. It was a very bad idea. She put me down the esteem I had mustered. I don’t know why I try.I don’t feel like I was a great mother either. What is my purpose?????

  53. My ”mom” has that too.I hate her for doing the same thing to me and my sister over and over again.She is selfish…I sometimes wish she would die…I don’t have friends because of obvious reasons.I want to go far away and forget her

  54. Hello everyone! My name is Danielle. I also grew up with a schizophrenic mother. Growing up my mother was my best friend. She always made sure everyone in the house was taken care of. When I was 15 my brother was in a car accident. He was drinking and driving (long story short) there was an accident luckily he did not hurt anyone other than himself and the friend who was originally driving the vehicle. My mother got her first episode when dealing with the insurance companies. She became so wrapped up in whos fault the accident was and what caused what chain reactions that she started harrassing the insurance agent. It started with flowers and teddy bears then threatening law suits. Before long the insurance agent dropped all of our family’s car insurance.
    She came out of that episode on her own(at the time none of us knew what she was really going through). She then started having back trouble which turned into her 2nd epsiode our family doctor of 16 years refused to see any family members because she was harrassing the doctors office.
    I have an aunt who is bipolar with a mile long list of other health problems she is my mother’s sister. There are 4 sisters total and they then decided it was time to get my mother the medical attention she needed. I was 16 years old the first time my mother was picked up (handcuffed and treated like a criminal) on a mental health warrant. My mother was FURIOUS with everyone. She refused medical attention, which in the state of TX is ok. The saying here is “it’s not against the law to be crazy, she is only commiting a crime if she tries to hurt someone or her self” I am now 24 years old soon to be 25.
    My mother has been commited so many times I can’t count. She “cheeks” her medication when she is sent to state hospitals. This illness has ruined our lives just like so many of you. My brother is in prison, I am raising his 13 year old daughter (her mother left when she was 18 months old) My aunts have pretty much stepped out of the situation all of them except my aunt with BiPolar who doesnt have the mental capacity required to deal with this. My mother divorced my father in 2005 and he now lives with my husband and I aswell. I have worked since I was old enough to drive ( ironically I am thankful for the illness because it has atleast taught me amazing work ethics or atleast to burry myself in my work) I am sure by now I am getting off subject but I am so excited/relieved to finally see there are people out there who deal with this stuff too. I have contacted government officials, lawyers, mental institutions, and anyone else you can imagine to try to get my mother the help she so terribly needs. There answers are all the same you can’t help someone who doesnt want to help themselves and if she isn’t a harm to herself or anyone else there is nothing you can do. Today is my mothers birthday when I called to wish her a happy birthday she informed me she had forgotten. I asked to take her to lunch she then informed me that George Washington was her great grandfather and my great great grandfather(not true). I have done everything I can do as a person to stay by herside and support her. Even though my father and her are divorced he still helps me with paying her way. I put an apartment in my name for her and we split the cost of her rent between my aunt, father, and I. She left out early on the lease. My mother wasn’t invited to my bridal shower because she has attacked (verbally not physically)every friend I have ever had. She caused a scene at my wedding and wouldn’t even take photos with me on my wedding day. She didn’t attend my high school graduation, dont get me wrong I have resentment but I do my best to cope with it. I however do not hate her for it, I feel sorry for her. The sad thing is my mother has never voluntarily taken her medication it has always been court ordered. Once she is released the state no longer concerns themselves with it. Insurance doesnt cover it and she gets 917.00 a month to live on. She hears voices, sees things that are not there, and makes a lot of threats. I mainly want to tell my story because I know what you all are going through. I have turned everything over to God and I believe if he brings me to it he will bring me through it. I do not feel that my life is harder than anyone elses. I believe that he gave me this struggle because he knew I could handle it. Dont get me wrong I have thought of suicide also my theory was “I can’t handle this anymore, If I just go away then my family can’t blame me for her problems anymore” I ask myself at times when my mother passes will I even miss her? As horrible as it is to say or even think I believe my mother passed away along time ago. I have prayed for years that god would take both of us out of this horrific scene. I was put on anti-depressants 3 years ago. I took them for a few months and then decided that I could do this on my own. I will not let medications decide my fait. Yes my mother has a disease and yes my life has been hard. Only myself and God will decide what the future holds for me. So I guess what i am really saying is please dont blame your family for not being there. This disease is what it is and there is nothing you can do about it. You take it on head first and give it all you can. Wake up the next day and go with life. Dont dwell on what if’s and why’s. Everyone in my family has always had someone else to point the finger at. As long as we all give it our best shot then we have done what we can do. Tomorrow is a new day and more than likely I will not speak with my mother but at some point in the day I will think of her or remember the way things used to be. Until then thank you all for your posts and giving me a place to release some bottled up emotions.
    God Bless,
    Danielle

  55. These posts are all so helpful.. I’m 14 and my mom is schizophrenic and has been since she was 14… all my life I’ve had to live with her… shes been in the hospital and even group homes over 50 times.. once in the hospital for 2 years, and the group home for 1. shes done and said so many hurtful things to me… My dad is basically a single parent and is the only person there to take care of me, and he’s 62 and its hard for him…. honestly, until I found this online, I didn’t know or think anyone else was going through the same thing….. this helped me a lot. thanks go out to all of you! <3

  56. I am a 25yr old guy from Bangalore. My mom is a classical music vocalist and (was)a charming, successful person overall.. she was always an overprotective mother, from the beginning. When I was 11, she had delusions that someone was after her life, and would harm her kids too. She would weep helplessly, powerlessly and inconsolably. ME n bro were very small then. We did not understand what was going on. A relative of ours, talked my dad into admitting her to a place which treated such cases with shock treatment, and boasted of lasting results for 10yrs. After a 2 day painful ordeal, the details of which my dad shudders even today while recounting, my mom was brought home, and she was perfectly normal. A perfect, caring and loving mom for the next 7 yrs.

    When i was 18, the jealousy and animosity of our relatives with respect to my mom crossed a line. It triggered a very violent delusional and fearsome reaction in my mom. We had an all out war with all our uncles n aunts and our relation was now just for lip service. WE lived in our own world. No more visits or courtesy calls from fake relatives. My mom started saying that she had divine powers of telepathy using which she could “connect” with anybody. Talking to herself, meaningless laughter, and loss of sympathy n empathy towards humans and animals became very evident. She started using the most filthy language at home, to abuse our relatives (their werent present) in front of me n my younger bro. she said that would ” immunise” us from their “attacks”. My mom, who always respected, loved and obeyed my dad, grew suspicious of him (without cause) and called him a whore-monger and other filthy things in our presence. SHe also stopped giving importance to anything he said. When we invited friends over, they would inevitably get a taste of her “behaviour”, leading us to decline requests of friends who wished to come over. The woman who cried silently, has now become fearless of real dangers (relating to safekeeping of money, jewels and wealth) and says she is invincible. Purposely walks into unsafe areas of the city, with a bag full of cash, “daring” crooks n thieves to loot her. Me and my dad have done our best dissuading her. WE believe its in Gods hands to protect her from getting mugged. : /

    life became a living hell. we had to hear abuses and shouting day in and day out for no fault of ours.
    When given medication by a doctor, she discontinued the RESPIRIDONE because it made her drowsy. she refused to acknowledge her illness altogether. she still gives concerts, and even recorded a CD of her music recently. All this hasn’t affected that part of her life.. This is an interesting topic for Schizo specialist Doctors to research.

    Since this event, my mom has put on a lot of weight, her face has become rounded. Has a double chin and a protruding belly now. Dressing sense is lost. purposely walks around wearing a dress which uglyily reveals her belly. She doesnt give a damn abt what people would think.

    My dad is a great man. I respect him a lot for putting up with this. any other man would have abandoned the mad wife. Our entire family has suffered a lot from this. I always envy my friends who say that they have a loving friendship with their mothers, who act as their best buddies.
    ===============================

    SOLUTION

    self medication was out of question.

    and my dad is too humane to go for that shock treatment option. he says he cant see her cry lik tht again.

    what we do now is powder the Respiridone and mix it in a small glass with a few ML water. Then, very carefully and stealthily, one of us adds it to her dinner/milk/ice cream while the other 2 distract her momentarily. This arrangement is very risky and its like taken out of a SPY movie ! a new danger and impossible mission everyday. :)

    DRAWBACKS-

    this approach requires more than one person. very soon, when me and my bro move out, my dad wil live alone with mom. How would this continue then????

    any gap in between administering the medicine results in noticeable outbursts of anger and relapse in general. So, doing it without break is a must.

    ========================================

    I do not know what tidings the future brings. My relatives have been the most irresponsible. They spread the news abt my mom in all the family circles. most ppl avoid us altogether nowadays. This wil be a big impediment in me n my bro’s matrimony.

    and if at all everything were to happen smoothly, i wonder how we would all live together again. as family….

    God hasnt answered my prayers for her recovery. Sorry to say this. Deep in my thoughts, i sometimes wonder if i might be a “carrier” to thd disease. which might become dominant sometime later in my life…..

  57. My mother was a schizophrenic/bipolar all my life for 36 years, then she died of cancer. Im an only child of 45 yrs and I honestly dont know if Im coming or going. y dad and I have both been thru hell on earth. Ive had OCD and panic since 2 years old, I’m on meds currently and I do not have ine living soul that understands me. Depression has swallowed me whole, I live with jealousy, envy, exploding anger, I hate myself and what I have become, a totally apathetic
    person with no clue what Im doing here. All I feel is sad and hopeless.
    Im angry at my mother for bringing me into this rotten uncaring world. Just living from day to day is a chore.

  58. Today is my mom’s birthday! She is 72. I am 42. I have so many questions about this illness. It’s an illness that has robbed me and my family of so much. It’s an illness that never stops taking a toll on your life. However, with a lot of effort I’ve learned to forgive her. I’ve learned to forgive my father for enabling her behavior,and I’ve forgiven myself. All I want for my mom for her birthday is a little peace before she dies. As hard as this has been on my entire family I know it is even harder on her.

  59. Thanks to all of you for your comments and stories. I’m soon to be 22 and I have been living with a schziophrenic mother since I was about 8. My grandparents took care of us whenever my mom was sick, but her episodes were so far and few inbetween at that time. Things were still bad. My mother, although stable, really couldn’t care for two young children on her own. So we all ( mom sister and i) lived in their home. When my grandfather passed away (I was 14) things really went down hill…fast. Looking back, my childhood wasn’t so bad compared to what was to come in my adolescence. With only me and my grandmother to care for her, I became stressed. My grandmother received most of the backlash mainly bc she was the one who TRULY looked out for here. She paid her bills, cleaned the house, cooked, did the laundry, remind her to take her pills etc. What did I do? I called 911 if she ever got too out of control. Have you ever seen your mother tackle by a police officier for charging at him? Not pretty. The older I get the more I distance myself from her. I try to deattch my emotions bc I see how drained my grandmother. I love my grandmother so much but it makes it so hard for me to remove my feelings from my mother when I feel so much resentment.
    One thing I feel however is embarassment. She extremely obses, her top row teeth have fallen out, she smells alllll the time, she won’t shower, she won’t buy groceries, she won’t clean ANYTHING, she fights with everyone (so you really can’t go out with her) and during one of her episodes she becomes veryyy racist. Most people can’t understand this bc I don’t either mainly bc she racist against black, middle eastern and muslim people. My family is african and although were aren’t muslim we no way shape or form are racist and having been raised for most of my life by the VERY same people that raised her, I can say my grandparents are not racist either. Its all very confusing but nothing abt this illness makes sense right?
    I guess the reason I came here is bc (if its not obvious already) I’m having a hard time not being angry. I almost can’t control it. My mothers been sick for almost my ENTIRE life and I’m so sick of it! I don’t want this anger to grow anymore than what is has. Honestly I don’t even want to dislike my mother. I want to feel the sympathy, sadness and overall compassion I use to feel for her again bc quite frankly those emotions are a lot easier to deal with.
    Anyway, I’ve never done this before…commented on my mothers illness outside of my grandmother. Even though a lot of my friends, family friends, and neighbors know about her illness I just would never talk about it. If I talked it about it was real and permanant. It became a real life problem. I haven’t been ready to deal with my moms illness or the very strong emotions I feel. I don’t really now who and where to turn to from here but aleast I know I’m ready to talk about it. I’m honestly praying for all our mothers and for each of us as well. Good luck guys!

  60. I came across this post since I’m dealing with similar issues and I’m really scared that I might be getting sick as well. My mother is schizophrenic and my brother has OCD. I’m now 34 and my mother has been sick since i was little. I started feeling it fully when i was about 12 years old. I hid it from all my friends. Didn’t really understand how to tell anyone about her sickness. I only told my best friends when I was about 20. when I could tell it to them without getting emotional.

    In my part, I’m lucky that my father was there to deal with it. So I didn’t have to bear the brunt of it. He is still the primary care giver. But its affected me all my life. the way i feel about myself, about my future, how jealous i feel about my friends and cousins who have normal families.

    Year before last my brother was diagnosed with OCD. I’m going through a lot of issues in my life, I’m still single and all my relationships have ended badly, I’m feeling depressed and alone. Its really hard for me to pick myself up. And now i’m really worried that I might be mentally ill as well. My father is very old and I don’t think he would be able to bear it if I told him that i feel sick too. I tried telling him a few months ago, but i think he was in denial. I keep thinking that if i fall sick, I will have no one to take care of me. No husband, no kids..

    Life looks really grim right now.

    I started typing this post, to thank all the people who have shared. It made me realise that I’m not alone and there are others who’ve gone through it. Thank you for that.

    • If you think you are mentally ill, its usually a good indication you are not! :) But I often think that something is wrong with me. And perhaps there is, growing up in an abusive, alcoholic, schizoid home, how would I then be devoid of some neurosis. I definitely think I need help, but I dont think I’m my mother just yet.

      If you are concerned find out, if only to ease your mind, but I think you are just feeling and dealing with the pain life has dealt you.

      Its so hard, I know it is. I dont know how I got to where I am, but I did. That makes me think I’m kinda a good thing you know, and you are too. You’ve been dealing for over half your life now, applause is warranted! You’re an adult now, you have options and resources, things you didnt have as a child, I encourage you to seek things that uplift you.

      About feeling alone, its weird right? I always feel that way, even when Im with people. But I know I’m not alone. Ive never been, theres been something pulling me through all these years, and I know its still there.

      I hope you find peace and a a bunch a joy, Lord knows you deserve it. All of us on this blog do.

  61. Hi, i just want to say, May God Bless You All For Sharing Your Stories..This is so hard to do sometimes and writing them is the best way to vent our sorrows..my life with a shizophrenic daughter has just begun..is going to be a long journey ahead of me..many blessing to all..

  62. well, I cant say it nicely nor will I make excuses for the wide range of schizos in my family.. Indeed I am very upset tired and could even be a tad bit bitter. My mother, one sister and three brothers all suffer from some form of that disease. It is Hell all of the time and I ignor it most times because talking to them or at them is like talking to a wall….makes no sense…totally insane

  63. “Mom probably decided to pull this episode due to the holiday coming up” Do you all understand that they do not choose to be sick? This is an illness not an optional behavior. My mom was diagnosed with this when she was pregnant with me, that means we have lived with this for over 34 years now. Yes it is hard and very very difficult. I also get mad when she gets her episodes but you guys have to understand that this is an illness, they do not choose to be this way. Who would? I lived in fear most of my childhood not knowing what was going to happen next, I got thru it and I pray that all of you get thru it too. It can be extremely draning.

  64. Hi, I’m Darla and I’m on the other side of schizophrenia now since my mother passed in 1999. As with all of you I have some stories to tell but I will not get into them. My family hid the fact that my mother was ill until I was 12, this is when the world came crashing down. My father could not take it anymore and divorced my mother which led to the first of my awareness of what a psychotic break was. Before when things had happened with my limited knowledge of the world, this is what all mothers did – little did I know. As I went through my teenage years into early adulthood I had to deal with my mother’s episodes like many of you with no help and nowhere to turn, my father was able to divorce her but I was not. I do have an older brother and sister but I believe they have some form of illness but have never been diagnosed. At one point I had had enough that it brought me as close to a nervous breakdown as I ever want to be so I left the state and did not speak to her for a few years. It was the break I needed to take on the new task at hand; she was about to become a “ward of the state” and was living in a car. My sister had her thrown in jail and her sister refused to let her live with her. I was all she had and with the support of my wonderful husband (at the time I questioned his mental health) we brought her to live with us. I will say that my mother always was one to look for help with this disease and she found our local mental health facility, it had a wonderful program which she participated in. It was a group home but once she proved herself she was able to move out to a little apartment that was on the same grounds. This was wonderful for all of us but in the end schizophrenics are notorious for not staying on their medications and now we were falling off the cliff yet again. This time I had to have her committed for 6 months in the state hospital but I knew it was for the best, I was not equipped to help her at this point. At this time I found a support group/class for families that have to cope with mental illness and I wish I had found it sooner. It’s not that it magically helped me accept our situation but it gave me the tools that I needed to deal with it and to understand the disease better than I ever had. When she was released we were able to move her into a property on her own and she was still able to participate in the mental health program as before. She did really well again but it wasn’t long before at the age of 56 she had a massive heart attack; I know it seems weird but I found some comfort that the disease didn’t get her. I know you all have been in the same situation that you dread the phone call that tells you what police station or hospital they’re in but when I received that last call no great joy washed over me, it was a stunned silence, aching guilt. Throughout her life everyone ran from her but she could not run from herself, she could have taken her life many times but she fought for help. She was a very strong woman and I just hope she knows how much I loved her, even when I wasn’t showing it. So now that I’m on the other side of the counter I want to leave you with the knowledge that no matter how far you run this person in your life would like to run even fast and further away from this disease. Find a support group; take classes; look into your states mental health facilities. Do not let this disease take more then you are willing to give it. I now have children of my own and I worry for them, not knowing if either of them will have any issues with mental illness but if they do I will be there every step of the way; I’ve had many years of experience. Try to stay strong; my heart is with all of you.

  65. hi i am bipolar doctors says I have a mood disorder sometimes they say phsycosis NOS and even schizophrenia. July 24 2010 I attempt to commit suicide by overdosing tylenol and I even tried to stabbed myself. My parents have taken me too curanderas like superstitious stuff to cure me cause they dont believe in science but they have hope which is good. I have all the side effects of schizophrenia but not the images. I dont see no images cause I got help before i got worst even though i was getting to that stage. I started this during college i was a student at UCSB until i dropped out because I felt lonely not visiting my family. However my condition is genetic so i got my first breakdown because of stress, suicidal thoughts it’s an everyday is just learning how to look at the positive outcomes. From this condition i learned that its only my thoughts that its just negativity because i never used to love myself but Im lm learning that i am worth it.Last month i stop taking my medication because i wanted to try being without meds
    but actually i went back to where i started the doctor prescribe me stronger medicine for my voices and i am currently taking paxil for depression; and inderal for anxiety. Doctors have change my meds like five different times it works because it reduces my energy that i get but of course i have to put my part too.
    My condition makes me say hurtfult stuff to my family and what hurts me is that sometimes i cant control myself. I jog to get air because it helps me realease everything what im feeling. It is truth schizophrenics needs alot of attention because thats how i feel. What is bad about this condition is that we can hide our feeling so easily inside we feel like we are dying of fear so suicidial thoughts becomes a normal thing to schizophrenics. I dont do it because i have my family and they love me and i love them too so i wouldnt want them to suffer at all. I still dont accept myself for having this condition i know i cannot question god because there are other ppl worst than me. Im barely 21 years old i have fear that someday ill lose control and i have dreams me having my family with children. I want to be happy i know this is permanent
    i have to learn to love myself of who i am now. Honestly i still have small crisis sometimes i cry by myself in the shower. Having this condition makes me depress for having it and sometimes not being able to control it. Sometimes i feel that some part of me dies but i dont give up that easy because i know that i love life and i want to live it all. My worst fear is not being happy in my future i want to have kids and be able to take care of them and have a loving a husband that will be able to deal with me. Im afraid of staying alone because i even annoy myself that i get angry at myself. I wish there was a cure for this condition but theres only treatment.I am currently going to school taking one class for summer because i sleep alot the meds reduces all my motivation. Sometimes i feel that i dont belong here at all it may sound ridiculous but thats how in feel. and all of you ppl that have been thru dramatic stages you guys are really strong. Ima keep savoring life because the most important thing is thinking positive and i know i have to keep going. :)

  66. Prayer: Father God in the precious name of Jesus Lord, I come to you in humble submission giving you all glory, honor, & praise. Father I ask you to please heal each and every spirit of every Mother who is suffering from schizophrenia in Jesus Name because I know what they are going through. Schizophrenia is not an illness it a demonic attachment and I praise you lord that they are going to be healed, delivered, and set free in Jesus Name, Amen. Please let your will be done Lord. Love, PTH

  67. PTH thank you for that prayer. As I was growing up I always questioned God why I had the life that I had and sometimes blamed him and sometimes got really angry with him. But as I have grown and matured I realize he never caused this, it is all from the enemy trying to break us all down. So I join you in prayer for all of us who have a family member with schizophrenia, I pray that God makes us all stronger to handle any situation that the enemy may throw at us. In Jesus name please take care of everyone in this thread and heal our hearts and teach us to be more forgiving and understanding.
    Amen.

  68. After reading all these posts I feel lucky that my life with a schizophrenic mother was not as bad as most – even though it has caused a lot of problems in my life. My mother, for the most part, would take her medication. When her meds would get low, she would become delusional and paranoid and think people were praying for her to die, especially people in our church. She always had this tremendous guilt and felt as though people were praying for her because she wasn’t good enough. She would fixate on cemeteries and death – not a good way for a child to grow up. She would think people could hear from the houses close to us (neighbors) and they would be talking about her – just total paranoia and fear – she was never violent as some people have said here – probably because she stayed on meds. But it has still done it’s damage in my life. I am 58 years old now with two grown children ages 30 and 33 who are both married. Because of the way I grew up I have extreme anxiety issues in regards to family issues. I cannot stand for there to be any kind of arguments between my children for example – it is like I am waiting for an explosion to occur. I cannot understand that people can argue and forgive each other and go on with life. I always want to “fix” everything that is wrong in my children’s lives. I know that comes from always protecting my mother and reassuring her that noone was mad at her or out to get her. Holidays are not enjoyable for me, which is so sad, because I am always listening and watching to make sure no one’s feelings get hurt and no one gets mad at anyone. I so want to be relaxed and enjoy my beautiful family and I cannot seem to get past all this anxiety and fear. I have tried anti-depressants and do not feel I am depressed and they do not help. Anxiety medicine does help when I am going through a bad time, but I am very careful with them because I have a fear of needing to take them too often. My children do not even realize how sick their grandmother was – they loved her dearly. I could keep her medication levels good and no one would know – only me and my dad. That is until she got mad at someone – then they would know because she would accuse them of all kinds of things – whew! So my story is a little dfferent, but I am still talking to therapists trying to live as normal of a life as possible. My kids just tell me to “get a grip” – at least they do not feel like they have to protect me from life. But the anxiety that comes from this type of childhood is life altering. My prayers are with everyone. I loved my mother dearly and know that she could not help that she was mentally ill. She tried to do the best she could. She developed Alzheimers and died at 82. My dad and I were with her until the end. We all just do the best we can do and God gives us strength to face each day as it comes.

    • I can totally relate to the part where you say that you are always careful about not hurting anybody’s feelings.Some find the caution irritating, but i can’t help it, neither can i stand up for myself. Sacrificing everything, altering everything u say so that your mom doesn’t get paranoid makes one that way. It is something that happens to you when you take care of someone with schizophrenia. Being extra careful with them, changes your personality all together and as you said, anxiety is something, i can’t help either. The feeling that something might go wrong very soon can take a toll on one’s happiness. Thanks for sharing.:)

      • I understand completey its like its been drilled in you to be that way for so long that you dont know how to act any other way. I cant stand up for myself either. The anxiety just seems to be always there from years of covering things up, pretending or lieing to yourself or her just to make your life easier or bearable through the bad episodes. Even through the good times too as then there is fear that it isnt going to last and can fall apart again anytime. Its really difficult. Thank you also :)

  69. I can so connect with you blondie about trying to \”fix\” everything around you and trying to be the \”peacemaker\” to avoid conflict. Also the part about anxiety as I look back I agree that my mom being mentally ill brought anxiety out in me and I still battle it from time to time myself. I am so thankful that I put this post up…I see now it has been rewarding to know that one I\’m not alone, and two that this has become a support circle for so many out there. I am glad everyone comments and keep the conversation open. In the near future I might write a post about what her illness has done to me as an adult more on a deeper level.

    Thank you all for your comments! God give us strength.

  70. The support i can find in here is overwhelming. Thank you for putting this up.
    Even though all here are strangers, I have never felt this easy to talk about my mom’s disease ever before.
    Nobody else can understand.But my mom’s better than ever, now. And God help her stay this way.
    Please do tell how you coped up with it. Her illness has made me strong as a person, strong enough to not give up that easily but what scares me is that i can’t believe in anything or anyone anymore. My Mom’s been well a lot of times, and then, she has an episode and everything comes crashing down. It destroyed me as a kid. And now I can’t hope for anything. And it kills me, i mess friendships up, avoided ppl who like me because i was so lost inside.
    And Nobody can ever guess what all of us go through, can they?

    But she’s good now, and I try to tell myself that is all that matters and trust me I am happy, but you can’t forget all that overnight, can you?
    Especially when you are scared she’ll break again and you are constantly preparing yourself to not get too happy. That is what i hate about this disease the most. You can’t ever believe that its gonna be okay.

    • I agree no one knows what we go through. I can understand Its like you feel bad for being happy because there is always this knowing certaintey that it isnt going to last. You cant prodict when but you feel you can never trust that thats it, its going to be like this for good now. No one can know all I can say is dont think too much about what might or might not happen (I know its hard, its all you’ve ever known) and believe that you deserve to be happy without having to pay the price. My mum is kind of in the same position, she hasnt had vioces for a while now and this has improved her quality of life grately. You will be okay. Thanks for sharing.

  71. My mom has had schizophrenia for the last 17 years. She is severely mentally ill. She has been in jail and mental hospitals, she is noncompliant with medication. Over the last 17 years she has had about 6 months total where she hasn’t been consumed in her delusions. It’s been like watching someone you love die over and over and over.

  72. Hey All, I have a friend who is a 24yr old mother with a baby that is 3yrs old, the mom is scitzo, & baby’s got cereal palsy… Things were looking real rocky with the baby when I first met her last year… But since then the baby is doing a lot better… Smttmes with her actions I wounded if the baby would be better off being raised by someone else, so I stepped in and helped baby get the nurturing he needs, as well as more foods & simple convo’s… I see huge improvements in his physical progress with motor skills & and attempts to speak… Yet it’s starting to seem to me like the interdependent relationship mom & baby has although negative at times… ” it’s like they bring out the worst in each other” yet they are happy and comfortable in this negative state pausing for solitary moments of affection then crossing back over to silent arguments where she yells, baby understands some but not all & then baby acts out cause of the stimuli she gives & they comfort each other negatively… :( idk what’s to come of this situation, I’m going to stay around as long as I’m allowed… But I just don’t know how to make their relationship better…. She needs that with her baby… More importantly the baby needs that from mom… Any info on this subject will help….

    The only thing is that I’m not that computer savvy & I was just looking up mothers with scitzo raising their children, looking to see if it is a bad combination like I’m suspecting… But I don’t know how to get back to this page so I can read responses to my statement… I have an e-mail address, but she got access to it & I don’t want to cause problems… e.g. Her trying to kill me… But if any one can email me the address to punch in so at I can find this place where I’m leaving my comment, so I can read other’s comments on the subject that will be greatly appreciated… Can u also Plz put it into an attachment, cause she don’t know what that is, and it will make it safer for me to contact, or respond back to comments…. Plz e-mail me at olivia85alexander@gmail.com :). BUT PLZ REMEBER DON’T PUT ANY REVEALING INFO IN THE EMAIL CAUSE SHE HAS ACCESS TO MY E-MAIL, AND IM NOT READY TO BY MURDERED YET! Just send me the link to get back here & no info about what’s this about…..

    Thank you so much for listening and understanding, & helping
    I don’t want her to kick me out her life & then I won’t know what’s going
    On with the baby, that’s why its so important to be discrete. I don’t wanna lose contact with baby, I’m taking care of baby to make sure nothing happens… :)

    Thank you… Olivia, but just act like I’m annonomyse…
    My bad I don’t spell well… :(

  73. Hiya Im from Scotland and came across this page when looking for sites which could somehow explan how I have been feeling. My twin sister and I were brought up by a schizophrenic mother and by our gran. Our dad was never in the picture. I am 22 now and I still feel the effects of the illness even though I have moved out and am in my final year at university. Confusion and anxiety is a big part of my life and it is a comfort to know I am not the only one who has felt these feelings of anger and frustration towards my mother because of this terrible illness. I agree it is like watching someone you love die over and over again as there are times when things seem alright and then she has a really bad episode and your world is dark again.

    People dont understand that when you live in a house with someone who is mentally ill, the house is consumed with this aura of dispare and you cant help but be consumed by it too, no matter how hard you try to get on with your own life and worries. I remember growing up when my mum was going through a particularly bad episode I would want to stay longer at school so i didnt have to come home. Me and my sister used to pick brambles on the road home from school for hours so we didnt need to come home. We played in our room from early morning till late at night never leaving the room as a sort of escapism. I am thankful we were born as two, a privelledge others didnt have when growing up with this illness in their lives.

    I can understand the earlier post about the fact that she didnt take care of herself or the house so how on earth was she able to take care of 2 kids. Our gran did that. My mum has also lost all her teeth with the neglect she subjected her body to. It sounds strange but just finding the post name thanks saying all the things I can actually relate to helps. When you are used to just seeing the complete opposite of your mum when you go out with your friends and thier families.

    I think the hardest part is knowing that I am older now but things havnt changed. I know my mum loves me even though she never did the things a mother does. However when I have my children and she is a grandmother, I cant be certain that she will even have any emotion on something which would be the greatest joy for other mums. This is hard to accept. She wont be there to help me when Im first starting out with my child giving me advice. When I get married she will be there but will she really care about the special day? I know there is always confrontation through out the years of whether they choose to be the way they are, the fact that they choose certain times to have an episode. As previous posts have said its easy to think like that and get angry but it is the illness and they dont choose to be like that, that is the frustrating symtoms of the illness. We have to remember they are suffering too, which is sometimes easy to overlook. I have only lived with it for 22 years but I suppose i have come to relise that no matter what love you recieved from your mother or what love she pleads you to believe she gave you, it will never be enough for you to live a stable life. There is always a need to find the love you crave somewhere else. It may be a bit sombre but thats how we leave ourselves vulnerable to people who will take advantage of this fact when all we want is the emotional support we never recieved. It can also go the other way and make us stronger for life knowing that things arent always easy because we learned the hard way. We have to find the inner strength and somehow make a positive situation from it. All I can say is thank you for this blog. We can find strength in eachother. As darla said, my heart is with all of you too.

  74. Wow just found this site and I have been reading all the posts. Everything in here is so true. I am 50 years old and just moved my 73 year old mother in with me. She has had schizophnia every since I can remember. It was horrible growing up and now all those bad memories are coming back. I try to keep a positive attitude but it it very challenging at times. She has been on her own for the past 25 years but now her health is failing. I have two sisters and one brother but none of them can handle her living with them. I always knew this day would come but not sure how I would handle it. I know in my heart she is grateful for the care it has been a rough life for her. Most of the time it is great and she seems to be in control of herself. She is not on any meds but like most of the others was in and out of the mental hosp all her younger life. Those were bad times for her and I think she still remembers them and is afraid she will have to go back. I don’t want that to happen to her so hopefully I can manage to keep her calm and living here with me for as long as she is able. Nights are the most difficult as she is up talking to herself all the time and it is all jumbled up and doesn’t make sense. My husband is very understanding and says you brought her here to take care of her and that is just part of it. Of coarse for him he doesn’t understand the anger of growing up a mom that has this mental illness. Her health isn’t very good but we are getting her settled in and hopefully her last years will be happy. I am trying to check into support groups in my area but this site has helped me a lot. Thank you all for your encouragement and sharing your stories. Life is a challenge but worth it so make the best of everyday and pray for peace with your loved one. SJONES

  75. Wow…this is almost like a therapy. I am 32, my mom was diagnosed when I was 10. My dad was an alcoholic at that time so I didn’t have any idea of what was happening with my mom. It lasted a few years…she was paranoid, seeing things etc. while he was drunk for months. I had to sell things from our house just to get some food. I was embarrassed of both my parents, never even thinking of bringing any of my school friends to our house. My grandparents decided to divorce my parents and that’s when my dad finally realized that his only daughter has been carrying this burden all alone… He quit drinking and been sober since… He refused to leave my mom and made several sacrifices to make sure that I actually get to have some normal life. He supported me when I decided to go to school overseas even though he knew that financially we couldn’t afford that. So I worked three jobs while going to college here in the US and he took side jobs as well. Together we managed to get me through college and keep up with mom. She’s been in and out of hospital over the last few years but my dad, bless his heart, never stopped taking care of her. No matter what he always said:”she loves you, you know…it’s the disease.” There were many embarrassing moments, many screaming fights with doctors, many petty looks from neighbors…there were times I hated her, there were times when I felt guilty for hating her, being angry for not having a normal mom in my teenage years when any little girl needs to have a mother. After I finished school I found a job, bought a condo and been living here in the States visiting my parents every year. When my mom takes her meds, she is ok…but sometimes she stops and …it starts all over again. I am still single because I haven’t been able to open up to anyone. At work my colleagues think that my life is perfect…but in reality I feel like I have a split personality. Everyone knows about my mom back home but no one knows about this here…some may call me a coward but I’ve decided to keep it a secret just so I could have a chance in having a normal life…even if it is a lie….
    I totally understand everyone’s comments here and wish you all the best. Next time you start hating your mom, just remember that “she loves you, you know…it’s just the disease”

  76. Some schzoidphrenics try to find out if they have inappropriate behavior it can be exhausting being with stressed out schizoids but family really have to practice verbal skills communication skills because we have problems with our emotions and expressing them in appropriate ways! Think positive so what ever is good, pure good report dwell on this It is a very lonely life when communications breakdown in families It is very sad when schizoids don’t measure up to family’s expectations But never give up Patience patience It is so frustrating when communications breakdown! I’ve heard of a Schzoid who is a doctor So there you go Hope Have to emphasize positive progress even if it is small! All illness are a challenge in a family never with draw support! Also some schizoids are easy market for sexual , physical and added psychological abuse!

    • Schizoids get bad public press Because when ever there is a temporary person in psychosis who is otherwise normal They get labeled Schzoid Actually anyone can have a bad very bad mental health episode in their life! Mental illness has to be brought out of the Dark Ages and not a curse from God but an illness like Big C Cancer! The public have to be educated about proper response to mental illness And I dont mean hold a prayer vigil although if sometimes it helps by all means go for it But on a practical level families and communities should want to learn skills to be good communicators with mental I’ll and not just leave it to professional like doctors nurses outreach workers Ordinary people should be encourage to learn these skills and also to be spontaneous and not just reciting some lines in a script! How serious are we as a community to really want to esteem someone who is Schzoid! I mean if this doctor whom I know of as Schzoid I mean they are next to perfect! Or else you wouldn’t go to them! How perfect does a Schzoid have to be before they are accepted for the humanity that they are! Schzoid is in D N A it is passed down in generation It is not a curse but disease! Okay so I’ll be micro managed! I’ll be on meds for the rest of my life! Thank you God as I’ve come to identify you in Christ Jesus! Thank you God for all other beliefs that have helped schizoids cope with this gift of life for whatever quality it is now! Thks God!

  77. I Know exactly how you feel. My mom also has schizophrenia… I am 23 years old. My birthday was just yesterday. Every year she acts up around the holidays and then forgets about the day she gave birth to me…. never phases me. I wish I didn’t exist at times. She is so selfish and everything has to be about her. If I’m sick, she’s 10x’s worse than me. If someone bought me something she’ll go in my room and steal it. She has stole very personal things of mine, even burned my stuff that was given to me on my communion… I am 23 years old now. I remember dealing with this when I was 7. My mom and I live with my grandmom. My grandmom took custody of me and is also taking care of my mom. I don’t know who my dad is, my mom never married, she doesn’t have friends or a boyfriend, she goes to the corner bar time to time, meets people that never last. She thinks she is an “actress”, this amazing poet and dancer that can get any guy she wants. She’ll blast music all night and act very disturbing with it if you get what I mean… I honestly am just so sick and tired of the bullshit. I am depressed because of this, I’m disowned because of this…. I have no friends. I wish I met someone my age who deals with this. I always just wanted to live a normal teenage life, and I’m still a young adult who wants to live life to the fullest… but how am I supposed to when I have a 43 year old child to take care of…

  78. I am sorry for every person who has had to deal with a sick family member. My mother’s illness has ruined her own life, my childhood, and my siblings lives. For years I distanced myself from her because I just couldn’t take the stress. I only spent several weeks visiting her per year. I was afraid I would lose my own mind. Being around her often causes me anxiety. She is often nasty and insulting.She accuses me of all kinds of things. She takes medication, but I think she skips doses. She is old now, and needs family members around to help her, so we deal with her. It’s easier now than when I was a kid. Those of you who have fathers that will take care of your sick mothers, make a life for yourself. Get an education, get a job, help yourselves. You can’t help your mothers if you allow yourselves to get swallowed up into the illness. For those of you who are embarrassed to be seen with your mother, well, a lot of people will understand that your mom is sick. My mother is still my mother, and I love her. I realize that her sickness is not her fault. But I had to distance myself at times, or I would have allowed the illness to destroy my whole life. My siblings and I take turns dealing with her.

  79. I am so glad to have read these responses. I relate to all of them. We have dealt with my mother’s schizophrenia/narcicisstic/borderline personality disorder illness our entire lives. We have tried all that we can do and she still will not take accountability or responsibility for her actions or illness. She is extremely intelligent and educated. However, her judgement is poor and she has no filter for safety, relentlessness, or boundaries. She believes that boundaries, laws, and consequences do not apply to her. She shifts all focus on other people trying to place blame on others. My brother, sister, and I have finally walked away. I read several posts about accepting the patient or accepting the illness. I disagree. I value my life, my marriage, and my children’s lives too much to allow this toxic disease and individual around. I have dealt with it my whole life and can honestly say that I have done all that I can to help her. We have tried every avenue from commitment, allowing her to live with us, pleading, and tough love. Nothing works. I choose my own family. I owe them that as their wife and mother. Please, please take care of yourselves. Know it is okay to walk away. Yes, if the patient is on medication and trying to improve their situation then by all means offer your support. If the person is nasty, critical, abusive, berating you at every turn – then by all means you need to walk away. Nothing will change.

    • Oh my god, at last the voice of reason! My mother has made my life a living hell for 57 years, also it killed my little brother at age 48 from alcoholism from the pain she caused him with emotional, verbal, sexual and every other abuse. I stepped out of the insanity and torture 30 years ago or I would be long dead by now. Wounded though I was I managed to raise 4 healthy kids to adults and earn a post-graduate degree only because I moved far away and had very limited contact with my mother. She has ruined so many lives I refuse to let her in my head any more and thats the only way it could be done with her. People need to understand no one has the right to torture and abuse them, sick or not. Her poison will never touch my children, thats when I drew the line also! And you are so right, it never changes, only gets worse. Mine loves to manipulate and torture, especially me since I was a tiny girl. She will write a letter saying how wonderful I am and then when I go to visit she will physically back me into a corner accusing me of some insane plot or spit out all kinds of filth I am supposedly guilty of. I would rather be dead than to ever ever say to my kids the things she says to me! The mental health system is a joke and will not intervene so now I know I will never ever go back for more of that abuse, I dont care what happens to her I cant change it because I cannot survive any kind of relationship with her at all ever!! If anyone thinks that is cruel I am sorry–you dont know the abuse and torture I have suffered all these years! Mother or not, no one has the right to torture an innocent person as she has me! Thank you so much Carol for speaking sanity in your post!!

  80. Hi, I am also someone who stumbled upon this article in hopes of finding help for my own schizophrenic mother. Apparently, we all who have schizophrenic mothers definitely have experienced mutual occurrences. Many of your experiences are very similar to my own, but I have my own as well and am desperately seeking help: my mother and I get into frequent fighting matches over the most futile of things, and one time when I was 15, she managed to get me arrested by the local police. That, in turn, caused me to become extremely sensitive and withdrawing to whatever emotional stress circulating around the household. Dad is away as a live-in caregiver trying to provide for us while working for pennies on the dime, and I’m living with two other siblings at home and my schizophrenic mom. I’m now 16 years old, and although I’m a guy, it’s relatively hard to cope with the opposite sex at times: especially when they have schizophrenia. At least I’m probably not the only one out there…

  81. hi…I have been around this blog for a long time now. around 2 years and still whenever a post comes up, i connect with it as well as i did then.
    But, in a way, i am stronger than i was and i have learnt to deal with it better.
    But then i have become pretty lonely.
    I find friends, good ones but i can never seem to have long lasting relationships/ friendships because i don’t open up about my mom’s situation and then it’s a lot of hiding and misunderstandings and i finally lose them.
    What i wanted to ask everyone of you was, should i open up to people., should i tell them about my mom’s condition? will they understand? i am afraid they won’t. I am tired of making up stories. Please reply.
    I need someone to talk to but i am scared it will mess up our relationship. That they ll start acting weird. I don’t have any idea about it because i have always tried to hide it…please helpp

    • Hey Lara, I was lucky enough to have some good friends that I could open up to about my mum’s situation and it was a bit of a relief to talk about it and not hide it anymore. In the end I don’t think it matters if they really understand what we go through but just that it was good to not keep thinking that the problem was so horrible that it couldn’t be talked about.

      • Thanks for replying..
        I have this one friend to whom i talk about it and yeah, it does feel good.
        But the problem arises when i meet someone new and i start hiding and ignoring them.
        But i will try to figure this out and be more open now on..thanks again!

      • I used to feel a lot of shame when talking about my family because of the bizarreness of the situation. I found it helped to talk to others who had the same situation, and I also decided I didn’t do anything to feel shameful about, and that I was buying into society’s view of my family. Best wishes.

    • Hi Lara,
      when i was younger I kept everything to myself and hid it, as I grew older I started sharing with my friends and now if I get into a relationship I always tell them up front so they can know what to expect. A lot of people do not understand but I think if you share the movies: beautiful mind and the soloist it gives them an idea of what this illness is about.

      • Thanks for replying..
        Even i feel i should start sharing more. It’s a better option to tell them and see how they handle it than hide it and lose the person completely..
        thank you!

  82. well my mom just got out of the hospital yesterday, and she sounds worst. so hard to deal with her but right now I have something much worst to deal with. I was just told this week by a therapist that my daughter might have the same illness as my mother. She is only 11. I have been so depressed all week, I really don’t know what to do anymore. Dealt with my mom my whole life and now my child might have the same illness. I always worried as a child if I would have it, if I would grow up being like my mom. I made myself very strong but now that I have children I seem to grow weaker and weaker. :'(

    • My heart’s with you. I know it must feel impossible to carry on but that’s what we have done all our lives. Please stay strong…all i have learnt from my life is we have to keep going.
      I know it must be extremely hard but atleast your daughter has you.You ll be there for her. Having dealt with so much pain only makes us kinder.
      and god will help you.
      We can only believe that everything’s going to be all right…It’s the only way to live.

  83. I’m 14 and my mother has schizoaffective disorder or something. I’m not sure what the difference is between schizophrenia and schizoaffective, but they’re both terrible. She’ll go 1-2 months acting like a regular mom. Taking us out, buying me clothes, etc… Then she’ll go off her meds or start taking the wrong doses. I can’t count the number of times cops have been to our house. Every time she’s ill she calls the cops and claims that my father is sexually abusing my sister and I. Naturally, these claims have no truth to them, but she seems to have a strange obsession. Whenever she gets sick she blames my Dad. His presence seems to scare her or something. My Dad’s not abusive to anyone or anything.
    Then she’ll be sent off to the hospital for a few months and she’ll come back, usually still in a bad state. I think the hospital wants her out of their hands and we’re forced to take care of her until she starts acting normal (which sometimes doesn’t happen) in a few weeks. When she’s in the hospital, my sister and I stay at my Grandmother’s house. She’s getting old, though, and can’t take care of us much longer. I don’t know what I’ll do if she can’t take care of us anymore, seeing as how I can’t own my own car or apartment yet. My Grandmother’s an alcoholic, but not a violent one. Whenever she’s intoxicated, she acts too happy, which is disturbing to my sister and I.
    My father is a kind man, but very gullible. He’s gotten involved in money scams from people claiming that they can give him money if he opens a new bank account or something. I know that our money is just flying out the window because of my father, but I can’t do anything about it. It’s all through his e-mail, which I can’t access to get proof. Thing is, my dad is very cheap. He won’t buy me clothes or things I need unless it’s absolutely necessary. Between my mother’s hospital fees, my father’s needless spending, and his low-paying job, our cars have been repossessed, our water and electricity have been cut, and we’ve gone without new food for weeks sometimes.
    So it’s tough being a poor kid with a messed up family in a school full of happy, well off children. My friends have great relationships with their SANE parents and plenty of money to go around. My relatives are very kind. They sometimes send checks to help us pay the bills. So between a schizoaffective mom, a gambling dad, and an alcoholic grandmother, I don’t have any adult I can trust.
    I’ve had to grow up fast, and my friends say I’m too mature and boring. I can’t talk to them, though. They know about my mom and her problems, but that’s about it. They don’t know when she’s in the hospital or about the rest of my family. Sometimes life doesn’t seem like living.

    • Wow I am so sad to hear your story but please remember that you will soon be able to move out as an adult. Your mom and dad are not your responsibility, they are grown! They should not burden you with their issues. You should start focusing on your own life and happiness and not their troubles. I hope things improve for you soon!

  84. I’m 12 and I found out my mom is borderline schizophrenic a month or two ago when she took me to a visit at my grandparents (used to live there. Just moved.) I just got there then she ran back to tell me something and tripped on a paper shredder. My grandpa just had surgery and is very sensitive to noise. He got kinda pissed at her and she started telling him that he shouldn’t have put it there and this led to me running out of the house because she told me we were now leaving. She called the cops because she thought I ran away. My grandparents and a few of my closest friends from my old school actually know she has this.

  85. I’ve been reading a lot of these comments and think there should be more support given to kids with schizophrenic mothers! I am an unusual case in that I believe my mother has simple schizophrenia (deficit syndrome). To the best of my knowledge, she doesn’t have the delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, etc….just all the negative symptoms. She basically is in a daze most of the time. Shows no interest in anyone or anything. No friends or hobbies. Hasn’t worked for 99% of her life. Having a conversation with her is pointless – she literally has nothing to say. It’s like there’s a body there but no one is in it. The only time she shows emotion is when she is angry, which is sporadic and usually unprovoked. She will glare at someone when angry at them, stomp around, etc…which is upsetting. When in this mood,she will give one word answers, if any. She’s been really unkind to my dad when she gets like this. I don’t know how he lives with her. She has difficulty making decisions. People know something is “off” with her, (she wears wool sweaters in the summer and her makeup is applied in an odd fashion) but we all thought it was depression. I thought so too until last year when she left my dad on the floor for 20 hours unconscious before calling the EMT. At that time, I found out she’s not sad at all really. She just is this way. She hasn’t seen a primary care dr. in 15 yrs. If given meds, would refuse to take them. When younger, I tried to “fix” her and get her help, but it’s fruitless. I found out recently she was in a psych. ward before I was born for two weeks, but no one seems to remember the diagnosis. No interaction, motivation, drive. I often think if I was dying of dehydration she wouldn’t think to bring me a glass of water. I have no expectations of her as a mother and haven’t since I was 14 or so. That was the time when she basically stopped showing any interest in me. I’m 41 now and the pain comes back at certain times of the year. Her birthday is this weekend, and buying a card is torture. They are all geared towards mothers who care and support their children. My mom barely acknowledges my existence. I’m sure you can all relate to that. She shows no interest in my son either, which shouldn’t be surprising. I wish there was more info. on this type of schizophrenia because it doesn’t fit the typical scenario. Hugs to everyone affected by this disease. My mom was smart and outgoing supposedly growing up. Today she is a shell of a person. What makes it harder for me is she never was officially diagnosed and she doesn’t think anything is really wrong with her. ps I went to school for psychology and have a B.A. I wonder how many children of mentally ill parents choose psychology for their degree.

  86. thanks for having this on here I think I had grown up with a mother with schizophrenia and just recently she was diagnosed with this disease I think I can probably forgive her for all the things she has done to me in the past and my sister but I think it was to make me stronger and now I have family of my own and I hope and pray everyday that I don’t do the things to my family as my mom did to me growing up I have read all your letters on here and some of the, made me cry and some I can relate too I also live states away I just wish she move here so I can care for her is now in here 60s and I don’t understand what she is taking about over the phone sometimes and my sister lives in the same state but she always calls me and says your moms off her rocker again its like she don’t want anything to do with our mother but 1 day I will get her to move down here so I can take care of her although she really didn’t take care of us when we were younger

  87. Yolanda, thank you for your comment, your story….I have found that many in the families of the one diagnosed with schizophrenia do not understand it…maybe one day your wish will be granted that she go live with you so you can care for her. I wish you the best Yolanda.

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