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    Thread: Coping with hurtful comments from mentally ill family member?

    1. #1

      Default Coping with hurtful comments from mentally ill family member?

      hi

      come to the forums for support, my mum was diagnosed with schizophrenia 24 years ago and has to have medication, monthly injections for life.

      she can be good some days but worries about everything and i mean everything.

      the bad moods are usually on a weekly basis and i'm finding it hard to deal with. i myself left an emotionally and physically abusive partner six months ago - after 17 years. they never wanted me to have anything do do with my mum and they were moody all the time, it was like treading on eggshells. Ive always been really close to my mum to try and support her and he never understood why I spent so much time with her.

      i have met someone else recently who treats me like a queen and thinks the world of my mum. he lives quite a distance away so only visits once a fortnight. when he has been down, we include my mum in our plans, ie if we go for a meal she is welcome etc.

      when my mum went off on one yesterday, mainly down to financial worries, she started saying my new friend is always taking over and she feels like an outsider and she hates coming to my house when he's staying.

      this is totally ludicrous as he never makes her feel unwelcome. so yesterday she ended up staying in bed all day and i phoned her and she barely had two words to say apart from she's still worried about money and cant focus on anything else and that i should just worry about my weekend away with my new partner as i wont be bothered about her then etc etc.

      im finding it hard to deal with as no amount of reassurance seems to work - i feel like retailiating sometimes when she says bad things to me but i don't. she found out my friend was coming down to stay 3 days instead of 2 and had a go at me about that saying that i wont want her now ive got him. in fact he was coming for an extra day to surprise my mum and do a few diy jobs at her house.

      why do i always feel like crap and in the wrong? i'm not right with him now because she has made me feel like she resents him and it hurts me. she's fine with him when he's down here and then has all these digs at me when she gets in these moods.

      does anyone else have experience of this sort of thing? how do you cope?

    2. #2
      Senior Member
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      Its hard to cope with hurtful comments whatever the situation is.It can be hard even if you don't care about the person who made the comment.All the more hurtful if it's a family member who you love.I'm sorry that your situation is so bad and that you are struggling to cope.
      I'm just somebody who has paranoid schizophrenia,not a Doctor or anything of that nature.
      There have been some huge changes in your life and for your mum too.You mentioned that your partner thinks the world of your Mum.And that when they are together she is fine with him.In my opinion these things are good.At least this is going right for you.
      Your Mum's hurtful comments may be because of her illness.I know that I get 'symptoms' more frequently when I am stressed out;and that's usually down to money worries.Stress triggers my illness in a big way.
      I can't understand why your Mum is resentful towards your partner when it was the man in your previous relationship who didn't want you to spend time with her.
      I do hope your Mum's financial situation improves.I know what it's like to have to live hand to mouth.Recently I've been tempted to steal meat from the supermarket because we are really struggling at the minute.
      I note that you say no amount of reassurance works and that sometimes you have to bite your lip.I'm sorry that this is so.Maybe your Mum is experiencing delusional thinking.Paranoid thoughts etc.Is there any way to get her stress levels down?

    3. #3

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      Thank you for your kind comments. I do really feel for you too, it doesnt seem right that people have to worry about what to others are the basics such as a meal etc. No wonder you are stressed.

      Just to update, I called to my mums tonight and whilst she didnt exactly apologise, she did say " I didnt mean all those things I said yesterday, just I am so stressed out worrying about money, it just made me want to take it out on someone else"

      So Ive sort of taken that as true - what hurts is that I never quite know which bits she means and which she doesn.

      It sort of brings back memories when I was a young girl and she was going through a breakdown (nobody knew at the time), she kept telling me to keep away from her as I was "bugged" and a spy. As I've got older (I'm almost 40 now), I've come to realise that it was all part of the illness but when she has outbursts now, I sometimes feel like it brings it all back,

      I also feel guilty for feeling envious of others, when I'm in work I sometimes wish I was part of a "normal" family - whatever that is. Then it feels bad because it's almost like thinking I'm ashamed of my mum which I'm not. I just feel jealous of people who have straightforward lives without this emotional rollercoaster.

      Thanks for listening.

    4. #4
      Senior Member Angels's Avatar
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      Everyone has issues in a family. some worse than others. no family is ever perfect! and i dont think ive ever met anyone that can define the word 'normal' because we are all unique and have different opinions on what 'normal' is. But your mum does love you. shes just burdened with an illness, maybe she is showing it but in her own way.

      if only we could wave a magic wand and things would be simple! life would be so much easyer.

      best wishes x
      "And as the sun, that had been too afraid to show its face in this city, started to turn the black into grey, I smiled. Not out of happiness. But because I knew... that one day, I wouldn't have to do this anymore. One day, I could stop fighting. Because one day... I would win. One day, there will be no pain, no loss Because of me, because I fight. For you. One day, I will win."

    5. #5
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      as a mentally ill person myself (i suffer from psychosis) i can offer this insight, it is important that the person suffering from the mental illness is aloud as much freedom as possible to express themselves within reason ie hurting people being constantly abusive sometimes they just need to work through these thing and figure it out for themselves see the error in their ways so to say. try to get through to them and tell them that the things that there saying are hurtful but dont snap at them because that will make it worse and could mess them up psychologically. hope that helped.
      Lesser mortals.

    6. #6
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      It's true that people forget about the carers.I've received a lot of support for my illness.My wife who bears the brunt of things and holds the family together has had no help at all.None.
      All I can do is give her my DLA payments(if I ever get them)to help.Hardly any contribution at all when compared to the contribution she makes.
      Angeljo you sound to me like my wife except you've been caring for your Mum for most of your life.Sounds like you do a great job.
      I wonder if there is a support group in your area for carers of people with schizophrenia.You might find support on this forum,hope you do.

    7. #7
      maudikie
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      I think you have been super. Have you ever had or asked for a carer's assessment? This can give you break and should be on a weekly basis. It is a fairly new thing so find out abot it. You need some time to yourself, and perhaps your mother needs another examination to see if any medication needs changing as she gets oldeer.
      Take care, and I am so glad you have this good friend.

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