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Living with Mental Illness in the Family

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I currently live with a wife that has delusions of me have another covert family that I allow into the house to deface and steal her things, etc. whenever she goes away.  She won't let me talk to her psychiatrist, but it looks to me like paranoia with a touch of schizophrenia.  She blames me for everything damaged or missing in her life, going back over a decade.

Now I notice my daughter's husband from whom she is now separated has similar symptoms, accusing her of all manner of things including stealing while he was incapacitated, etc.  He also has very sepecific charges which I know for sure to be delusional.

Is it typical for paranoia to focus on those closest to the paranoid?  What can be done?  There is no hope of joint therapy in either case.

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Outasight, sorry to read about this, must be very hard work. From my experience and readings there are only a few options - medication of some sort from the psychiatrist or talking to a psychologist who knows about sz and paranoia and has seen patients in the same situation before - does not have to be joint therapy.

What I think about paranoia is that those who are close get caught up in it because they are the people that most time is spent with - the paranoia is around the individual wherever they are in a way.

Did anything happen a decade ago that may have triggered it all off? Paranoia means that the person is probably very scared indeed about it all themselves.

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Yes, therapy need not be joint, but if you are not allowed to talk to the psychiatrist, little progress can be made.  Psychiatrist gets inaccurate feedback on the effect of medications, etc.

Yeah, of course, I think about triggering events.  At first, I wanted to blame myself, but grew to see an array of triggers and that triggers are not the cause.  Things that normally could be dealt with can't be because of the mental condition.

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I recall a movie from back in the 60s or 70s describing the progress of sz in a young early 20s or late teen woman.  An unfair, disappointing break-up with a boyfriend seemed to be the trigger, but the movie made clear it was not the cause.  I remember, at first, wanting to argue with the message of the movie, just liike I initially wanted to focus on triggers in real life.

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Just wanted to share a link from a leading Research Professor who has done a lot of work on this sort of area and written some books about it too, if you think reading about how to deal with it all could help or maybe provide a few ideas - his latest research is using virtual reality scenarios.




"Delusions tend to develop at times of stress, which activates genetic and environmental risk factors. Those factors can include experience of trauma; sleeplessness; isolation; and drug use. Certain ways of thinking also contribute: thinking negatively about the self; worrying excessively; jumping to conclusions; and only picking up on the things that seem to confirm our beliefs."

Lack of sleep and stress can be big difficulties.


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