Loving someone with a mental Illness. Schizophrenia.

@Tanika (632)
February 12, 2007 9:27am CST
One of my cousins is severely mentally ill. She was my Best friend for a very long period of time. As the years have passed she has become more and more ill and has finally lost touch with reality. I know that she has schizophrenia. I know this because in the times when we were very close I have attended doctors with her and they told her she had Schizo Affective Disorder and without proper medication it would most likely develop into full blown schizophrenia. She is not on any prescription medication and she also takes illicit drugs. Another HUGE risk factor for developing the disease. I find it so sad and heartbreaking because I care for her so deeply but I have just come to the point where I cannot even see her anymore as she gets quite agitated when i do not agree with some of her really far out ideas. Now one of my questions is this - She does seem to have some grip on what are socially acceptable ideas and I thought that people with this disease had absolutely no concept that the ideas they have are not socially acceptable? I say this because when she meets a new person and develops a relationship with them she does not sprout any of her far out ideas to them in the beginning, she waits until they have known each other a considerable period of time before telling them her ideas. With me because of our long history and the fact that she trusts me she will go straight into some pretty weird discussions when we see each other. The other thing is that we both have children. I do not want my child around her when she is telling me that people are trying to kill her and alot of other even stranger things which is why I do not see her anymore. I feel so sorry for her child as I cannot even imagine what her child will turn out like. Then again, probably alot like her since her own mother has Bi-Polar disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder also with schizo-affective disorder (which by the way is different than schizophrenia). How can I help her and especially her child without hurting myself in the process? She can turn nasty easily and has done so to everyone else in the family but me as I was always a safe place, and used to be able to talk reason into her when she was talking strange things. Not anymore though. I would really like some advice from someone who has had a similar experience if there are any. I know this post runs the risk of being overlooked because it is soo long and I apologise for that, I just had to get out my feelings on this matter. I am also sorry that it is quite unorganised. Please tell me what I should do. And how I can detach my feelings if she is not prepared to help herself which seems likely. Thanks for reading if you made it through, Tanika.
1 person likes this
1 response
@deepuj (591)
• India
13 Feb 07
Hey really sad to here this, i dont have any experience with anyone like that, also i dont know the exact nature of schizophernia ,but i had read about it at many places. After my quick research i can suggest u some of the following things: Play some soothing music to please the person. Talk about nice, plasing things, try to give some books(inspiring), motivate them to read, or tell them inspiring stories, like that of alchemist, try to tell them that god is there with them n no one can harm them. Plz take care of urself ,all the time, stay in presense of them. I feel love is alanguage that will be understood by any person in he world, no matter however ill he/she is, they can forget or stop understanding the worldly language but they ll sure understand love, treat them with plenty of love, it may take time but it ll help for sure. Bye thanks n god bless
@Tanika (632)
• Australia
13 Feb 07
thanks for you positive words. I really needed that. I was feeling down about the whole situation but just knowing that someone is reading and trying to help makes a huge difference. Thanks again, Tanika.