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  • Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

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    Old 11-30-2006, 05:39 PM   #1
    Laylah
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    Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Myself and my brothers and sisters are in a condition of quite severe emotional and psychological trauma as a result of having been raised the children of an untreated schizophrenic parent. We range in age from 17 to 31, and have never even as much as sat in the same room in seventeen years, we just canít; thatís how bad the dysfunction that weíve been left with is. I am wondering is there anyone here who could direct us or guide us on our way out of the sort of pain that arises from this life experience?

    My mother needed and deserved help, but hadnít the wherewithal so seek it and never had it offered to her, and as a result we have all had to suffer the consequences.

    I am just wondering is anybody has any insights about this. It could be books, websites, groups etc. I have just come to the point where I know the devastation of this illness needs to be beat out of our lives..

     
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    Old 11-30-2006, 05:57 PM   #2
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    Question Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Unless your Mother is willing to seek help with medication and needed counsel, none of you can do anything but get yourselves good therapists/counselors.
    Have you ever had a family meeting with siblings to try to figure what to do to get your Mother her needed help?
    In this day and age there should be many avenues of psychiatric help for her nearby. Please keep us posted.

    ~Liz

     
    Old 11-30-2006, 07:49 PM   #3
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Help for our mother is not even an issue. She is as crazy as a s**thouse rat, is happy to be, and presumably always will be. I gave up worrying about her a long time ago. All I care about thesedays is my brothers and sisters. Thank you for responding.

     
    Old 12-02-2006, 09:52 PM   #4
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Laylah,

    No one can even begin to understand the devastation and tragedy of having a family member with schizophrenia if they have never experienced it. My mother suffered with paranoid schizophrenia. It became worse as she got older. I am the oldest and I have a younger sister and brother. I know what it is like to have a mother who hears voices and hallucinates. We could not take here anywhere and she was so paranoid, she would accuse people as well as her family of doing things to her. It begin to get so bad, she would threaten us with knives. My father had her put in hospitals numerous times. She tried suicide on many occasions and at the age of 49, succeeded by drowning herself in the swimming pool. I am now 46 and still deal with the legacy of my mother's schizophrenia. As a teenager, I was put in the place of being the care taker for my siblings. We come from a family that did not talk to each other about my mother's illness. We never had family counseling. As a result we have all dealt with some degree of depression because of our upbringing. If you mother is a danger to herself or any family members, you can have her legally committed. I would suggest you contact all of your siblings and have a family meeting. If not to help your mother, than to get some help for yourselves. Do not be afraid to talk about this illness. Your mother is not crazy, she is suffering from a devastating disease and she needs help. There are a lot of new medications and treatments that can control her schizophrenia. Unfortunately, they did not have these meds and treatments back when my mom was alive. Perhaps if you take the lead, your siblings will be receptive and you can start the healing process amongst yourselves. There are support groups out there for families of people with mental illness. You can also contact a therapist who can help your family. Please do it now or you will suffer for the rest of your lives due to this horrendous disease. God bless you and your family.

     
    Old 12-02-2006, 11:33 PM   #5
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Thank you both for responding, it's something of releif even to just hear from someone who knows what I'm talking about. I'm the eldest girl in our family, so I had the same experience of having to step into the shoes my mother vacated when her illness got really bad. We hadnt a clue what was going on back then, just that it wasnt normal for our mother to be telling us all to keep our voices down because of the listening devices in the walls etc. At this point in my life it is my brothers and sisters I'm worried for, to be honest. My mother would never in a million years accept there was anything wrong with her, no matter how off-the-wall her behaviour is. Thank you again for responding.

     
    Old 12-03-2006, 02:32 AM   #6
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    yeah as long as you stay together, keep researching, and renember to call the doctors if anythink seriouse happends im shure ur gona be ok.

     
    Old 12-03-2006, 06:50 PM   #7
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    There are different ways of being ok Ozzmo, but thank you for your response.

     
    Old 12-04-2006, 08:32 PM   #8
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    The sad thing about this illness is that they don't think they are sick. They really believe there are voices and most of the times will not take the meds or want help. All you can do is try to have some type of normal family for your brothers and sisters. Have family gatherings together and stay close to one another. Encourage your siblings to talk and help them to understand that their mother has an illness. What ever she does or says is no fault of theirs. I know it is tough being the oldest and trying to hold it all together. Also take care of yourself and get counseling if needed. It is almost like growing up without a mother.

    Last edited by Happy Days; 12-04-2006 at 08:37 PM.

     
    Old 12-05-2006, 02:05 AM   #9
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    It is happy days, in fact I sometimes envy those who grew up without a mother, to be honest. I'll never forget the first time I realised there was something very seriously wrong with her. I was four years old and asked her when she was going to get better. She told me that she was not sick. Well, it's been more than twentyfive years since that conversation but I still remember the sheer terror of realising that there was something very wrong with my mother, but that she didnt know it. It was like, to me, as a child, as if some monster had gotten inside my mother and I was dealing with some 'thing' that looked and sounded like my mother, but definatly wasnt her. I kept hoping someday she'd get better. She never did. I'm glad I didnt know she never would at that stage, I think I would have died of grief.

    I know that there'll be people who suffer from this dreadful illness reading this thread and to those people I'd say please dont misunderstand me and think that I have any kind of grudge against those who are afflicted in this way. I recognise that the person who drew the short straw in our family was our mother, without a doubt. I wouldnt trade her place for mine, so I know she got the short straw all right. It's just that knowing somebody elses straw is shorter than yours dosent make yours any longer, if you know what I mean.

    Thank you all for listening.

     
    Old 12-15-2006, 11:57 PM   #10
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Laylah its really helped reading your words and others on this thread. I can relate too much to your words. My mother is also undiagnosed schizophrenic and I am the eldest of 3 (4 including brother of different mother) . There are also severe disfunctional problems within the family and an almost complete lack of communication on the problem with all but one of my relatives. I am the only one who has contact with her at the moment as the others can't handle it. In fact I live with her at the moment. she presently thinks I work for a govt agency who in conjunction with the neighbours are conspiring to ruin her life. She refuses to believe I am her son and wants a dNA test (which she would never believe anyway) and she sometimes believes I am a "bodyhopper" using her sons body. The constant mental and emotional torture is causing my heart to go numb - I have to leave but if I abandon her completely and she hurts herself or others then it will be equally traumatic - that an the fact that until I find a job I cant afford to move out. Thats the thing you see sometimes the guilt of turning your back on someone can be as destructive as facing their lunacy.(now and again). I relate to your monster inside theorum - I think in the past before they invented psychiatry they called this possesion. My mum refuses to admit theres anything wrong as well - contrarily me and the other siblings are constantly on guard and analysing ourselves to make sure that we dont go the same way - the result is a kind of self doubt borne of a knowledge that absolute certainty that your perception of reality is correct can lead to problems.
    I have little faith in psychiatry and their reliance on drugs to solve every problem but appreciate they come in handy sometimes. However this is by the by as my mother has an almost supernatural ability to imitate a normal person should a psychiatrist pass within five miles of her (thus the UNdiagnosed).
    At the end of the day I can handle visiting my mum sometimes ( as I say the guilt of abandoning her completely could be worse if she did something to herself -however I dont blame those who cant handle it) but living with her is a no no - ill end up hating her and thats unhealthy to hate people you love - I wish I could get out now - but Ill still visit her when I do get out. I know on the whole this mental condition a destructive thing but although some of the things about the way she is are horrible - some of her revelations can be marvelous and interesting. Its really hard - you seem to have your head screwed on though - stay strong.
    Gus

    Last edited by Gustard; 12-16-2006 at 12:13 AM.

     
    Old 01-07-2007, 07:04 PM   #11
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Gus, I feel dreadful I havent seen your post before now, I havent checked this thread in weeks cause I find the situation so upsetting; I'm sure you'll understand that!

    Some of the things you said sent shivers up and down my spine, there was so my identification with some of the things you said, like this for example:

    "..my mother has an almost supernatural ability to imitate a normal person should a psychiatrist pass within five miles of her" So does mine! In fact I've known people to meet her four or five times before she lets the mask slip, and before that happens they're genuinely wondering what I'm talking about and maybe wondering who the sick person is, me or my mother!

    My mother is very intelligent, she's unusually well read for a working class women and can hold complicated theoretical discussions on literature and music and art. She'll spend an hour or more discussing these things and then, while looking you straight in the eye and without making any perceptible shift in her composure, ask you why you think the neighbours next door rape and murder their children.

    I did become densensitised to a large degree, but then broke all contact, mainly for my sons sake, as I dont want him listening to the sort of highly inappropriate things I grew up listening to day in day out.

    How have you been getting on? Are you any closer to being able to move out?

     
    Old 01-07-2007, 10:16 PM   #12
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    What helped me was reading a book called something like Daughters Without Mothers. Esentially, my mother who was an undiagnosed and untreated paranoid schizophrenic was an "absent" mother. Although my mother is still alive and I care for her, she is not, and never really has been a mother to me or my brother. It helped me to read that book (which I picked up quite by accident).

    I feel like I'm pretty normal now... age 37... with a good life and a good family. I have worked very hard to overcome the way I was raised.

    I was fortunate to have an alcoholic father when I was growing up. Why is that forunate, you ask? Well, because there are support groups for children of alcoholics, and in those groups, I learned a lot of skills that I also apply to my schizophrenic mother. The first is detachment. I did not cause her illness, as a child I could not possibly have been able to recognize the illness, I cannot cure or treat her illness... all I can do is be the best, most "normal" person I can be. Sometimes it doesn't feel all that normal, to tell you the truth. Sometimes I look around at "normal" people and think how lucky they are and how they could never possibly understand the horrors I had to live through as a child.

    Some counseling for you and your siblings should help. What I found out as an adult is how truly neglected my brother and I were in all of the emotional realms. Throughout my adulthood I have continued to learn how to manage emotions like "normal" people rather than paranoid schizophrenics and raging alcoholics. Those were learned behaviors that I had to unlearn (and I am still unlearning some of them!).

    Good luck!
    jmak

     
    Old 01-08-2007, 06:45 PM   #13
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Oh I know what you mean Jmak, we'll probably spend the rest of our lives unlearning! I'll do a search for that book now actually, I reckon I could do with reading it! Thank you for responding.

     
    Old 01-26-2007, 11:40 PM   #14
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Laylah View Post
    She'll spend an hour or more discussing these things and then, while looking you straight in the eye and without making any perceptible shift in her composure, ask you why you think the neighbours next door rape and murder their children.

    LOL that made me laugh though of course its not funny. Anyway yes I have moved out and feeling a lot better for it. I understand you protecting your kid its an issue for my sister too. They say mental illness runbs in families for genetic reasons but I dont think its genetic at all - living with someone like that is enough to dive anyone mad !

     
    Old 02-06-2007, 08:00 AM   #15
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    Re: Consequences of very sick schizophrenic mother..

    These messages have helped me. I also had a mother with undiagnosed and untreated paranoid schizophrenia - some of the time she was well and some of the time she was off. It was a very confusing childhood and I certainly blamed myself (and so did she). Now she is elderly and has psychosis. She asks for help, but really just wants to drag me down into her bottomless pit of despair, chaos, and bitterness. I'm also going to look for that book on daughters without mothers. Thanks all - we are not alone and maybe we can help each other.

     
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