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Husband and medication compliance-WWYD

D

Dartfordwarbler

New member
Joined
Aug 1, 2020
Messages
1
Location
Cheshire
Name change. Although this is relating to mental health issues it is about relationships so posting here. I’ve tried to keep to a short version😔.

DH and I married for 30 years, he’s 66 and I’m 57. For last 20 years he’s had a “severe and enduring” mental illness. He wasn’t diagnosed for many years when first started and we had a very difficult relationship ( at times he was borderline abusive). I knew there was something wrong but GPs didn’t listen to me or him. 10 years ago he had another psychotic episode and this time he was diagnosed with schizophrenia and put on antipsychotic meds. 5 years ago he was re-diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and put on high doses of antidepressants as well. I’m his only carer- he just has check-ins with a psychiatrist every 6 months. I attend those as psychiatrist wants to know from me what’s happening and DH has always been open with me and his treatment plans



The meds do work: they virtually stop the “voices” he hears and “unusual” beliefs/thoughts. They reduce the stress he’s in from that and the agitation. He’s calmer, more patient and more empathetic towards others ( versus being suspicious all the time) But these meds come with massive side affects: weight gain, stupor, lack of energy. So it’s a fine balance to control the agitation etc but not make him comatose.



About 3 years ago he forgot to take his meds on holiday with him, and then stopped them for about 6 weeks. His symptoms returned and so did his aggressiveness and stress and odd behaviours- he told me after 6 weeks and went back on them. He also promised me that if he ever wanted to stop the meds again he’d tell me first because of the impact on our relationship of his symptoms



Last year was a great year for us- I’d taken early retirement to balance caring role ( I was sole breadwinner for 15 years due to his illness and doing stressy job as well as carer). However, since February this year, our relationship has deteriorated and spiralled out of control. He seems angry all the time, he’s aggressive. We end up bickering. I’m stressed. He’s stressed. He’s spouting conspiracies about everything. We’re having arguments over quite bizarre stuff. All classic symptoms of his illness.



Of course I asked him if he’d missed his meds a couple of times- he’s got angry and denied it. We’ve had conversations about why were arguing and he’s insisting it’s me and my menopausal moods (I’ve been menopausal for 10 years and can be anxious occasionally but that hasn’t changed!). He said more than once it’s me who’s ill and need to see GP, and not his illness getting worse.

He’s also lost loads of weight and been taking the praise from me, family, GPS for achieving that whilst on his meds. I’ve been spouting on about being amazed at his willpower etc.



So now I’ve just found out he stopped taking his meds - sometime in late Jan or Feb. He doesn’t know I know. I am really upset and angry that he has lied, been gaslighting me and broken the promise to tell me before he stopped his treatment. I’m a bit stunned as one of reasons I’ve stayed with him was that he was always honest and open about his care/treatment and wanted to “control” the symptoms. I have never said he must take the meds-I know that’s his choice- it’s the deceit and denial that’s the issue.



I’m pretty sure he’s not discussed with his psychiatrist either



I don’t know what to do or even what I want to do. WWYD?
 
JessisMe

JessisMe

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 27, 2020
Messages
3,285
Location
Nashua NH
I would be very direct in telling him that you are aware that he has stopped taking his meds and how you feel about it. I would share with him what you told us: that you have stayed with him in part due to his honesty and that has been compromised. I would also tell his psychiatrist who might be able to be more persuasive with him. Explain to both the consequences of not taking his meds on your relationship. Are you willing to leave him over this? If you are telling him your intentions might be enough to get him to comply with his treatment plan. He has been acting like it is some small optional thing to do if and when he feels like it and it’s not.
 
Gaijin Gabber

Gaijin Gabber

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2020
Messages
67
Location
hillsboro
a huge amount of respect has to be given to your kindness and support, i dream of having a wife that will always be there for you, im not even 30 so i have no real place to give true advice but honesty and communication are some of the most important things in a relationship, after all this time to have it turn for the worse is devestating, you provide alot and not helping himself to help you is very disrespectful, you give them everything, they should be able to give you the honesty so both of you can be happier, you both deserve it, i doubt you want to leave given the circumstance
 
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