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Needing advice - My Partner with Psychosis and Delusions

Hey there, I'm new here and a bit nervous posting. I feel like it's so hard talking to people that haven't experienced the ups and downs of living with someone with mental illness and it's hard to find good support systems sometimes. I would love to hear your thoughts on how I can make sure I don't burn out/ how I can support my partner better / any advice! 
here's the (long) back story... 

I have been with my partner for almost 2 years now. He has a history of psychosis and schizophrenia, which I knew about but had never seen the full effects before recently. I knew his story and his previous history of being in hospital for 8+ weeks (which happened years before I met him). As someone who suffers with anxiety/ depression myself (which is currently okay), I always had empathy and understanding for him and his illness. The only real impact his illness had on him was the side effects of his anti-psych medication he was on... which severely impacted our relationship as a new and young couple and ended up causing a lot of problems.

He went to see a psychiatrist last year to get his meds reviewed and they slowly reduced his dose to nothing and he fully came off them last year. I saw some changes in him when he was off them, he was thinking very deeply, questioning a lot of things but slowly would become overwhelmed. In hindsight I can see now he was very sick (this is something that I feel guilty about - I feel like I failed him and his family and that I should've known better). He would tell me things that he said his Mum/ Grandpa/ Dad had told him, which I would never question. They were private things about their pasts that  he asked me not to share. All of which we now know we're never true. The biggest delusion he had was when he told me that he had done something really bad/explicit/violating with one of my close girl friends. This, at the time... I didn't know was a delusion and absolutely broke me. I felt like my world had turned upside down and couldn't believe I was with someone that could do something so disgusting. He was also distraught when he told me, he felt so much shame and guilt and hated himself for it. After everything coming out - we realised that this delusion wasn't true. I have been speaking with my own psychologist about it too... who also concluded that is highly unlikely it's something he actually did, because it was so out of character. He ended up in hospital for 4 days after this happened. Which was another battle in itself for me. I felt like I'd just been hurt so badly and his family (who are SO lovely and supportive) almost we're protecting me and I felt like keeping him from me a bit. So I went from living what felt like a normal life with my boyfriend... to him telling me this horrible "confession" ...to him completely disappearing from my home/life/ Me unable to contact him etc. 

Fast forward to now, hes back home and on a different medication which he feels is still not working that well. I can see a difference but also know that he's not fully well yet. He gets really anxious and still seems a bit like a different person. He has also started seeing a psychologist that seems very spiritual, and with my partner being extra vulnerable at the moment... it seems like he is taking everything this guy is saying as gospel (pardon the pun). This is also very out of character as he's not normally a spiritual person unless he's sick. After his appointments he was saying very odd things that worried me a bit. But I also felt like I was being negative because he felt excited about it. 

I just feel so exhausted, like I am second guessing everything he is saying at the moment. Wondering if I need to be logical with him and redirect his thoughts or if I am just being unsupportive. I feel like I am going crazy and constantly not knowing what is him and what is his illness. We both feel like we are simultaneously bringing each other down a bit. I feel happy one minute and the next I'll get a message from him that makes me feel so anxious and worried. He decided today that he's going to go stay at his parents house for "a bit". This was something that was mentioned but never fully discussed together. I know it's probably for the best and he constantly tells me how much he loves me etc, but it's still just so hard. 

I am so overwhelmed by everything, I don't know what to do, how to look after him or how to look after myself. I'm so scared of the future with him and I don't ever want to experience the kind of

pain he put me through again, but I love him so much and really want everything to be back to normal.

Will he get better or will I never see my old love again? Is this something I will always have to deal with? Any help would be so appreciated! 

4 REPLIES 4

Re: Needing advice - My Partner with Psychosis and Delusions

Hi @Betsy1,

 

Welcome to the forums and thank you for sharing your experience with us. 

First off, I just wanted to let you know that I moved your post to a thread that may be easier for other forum members to find and respond to you. If you think the post should be somewhere else, please let us know.

Secondly, it sounds like you are quite supportive and understanding of your partner's experience and you're doing a great job in being there for him. I can hear that it is taking its toll on you and causing you a great deal of distress. I am sorry this is happening for you, it sounds exhausting, stressful and emotionally draining. Who supports you through all of this? You mentioned you've spoken to a psychologist about it, but I am wondering whether you have any family support. 

 

SANE is currently running a pilot program for people who are supporting / caring for people experiencing mental health difficulties. The counsellors would be more than happy to have a chat with you about your experience and provide short term support. Feel free to call the open line at any time between 10am and 10pm on weekdays (except public holidays). 

 

Warm regards,

tropicalsun

Re: Needing advice - My Partner with Psychosis and Delusions

@Betsy1 

 

you are so not alone in this anymore. I'm a bit busy to make a long comment right now, but I'm hearing you babe. Many of us here support very sick partners and some days get so tired of riding the roller coaster. 

 

I'm glad he went to hospital, mine will never go. I'm sure you're aware that sometimes the meds take weeks to have their full effect, and that they may well increase doses depending on how he's doing.

 

Get his permission to talk to his medical providers so that you're in the loop is the  best advice I can give right now.

 

Hang in there

S

Re: Needing advice - My Partner with Psychosis and Delusions

I wish I had answers for you but I at least wanted to reach out and say I have an idea of how hard it is. It is so hard to ride the ups and downs, to try and be there no matter what even when the things that hurt so much happen. I am so glad you are talking to someone as well for your sake, well done for getting some help for yourself as well. It is so important to look after ourselves as well.

Re: Needing advice - My Partner with Psychosis and Delusions

Hi @Betsy1
I can't offer much advice bit I read your post and can sympathize with your situation as I feel there are some similarities with my situation. I hope you are coping and you both are doing well
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