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12 Jul 2005

Dear CS
My boyfriend and I have been together for just over 19 months. Our relationship was never stable since the beginning - it included heavenly highs and awful lows. He's an extremist in a lot of ways and our fights ended up in a break-up more than twice. His behaviour isn't always... normal. It's hard to explain but he sometimes gets so upset and I honestly can't justify his actions. The next moment he's fine, just sad, quiet, depressed. He locks his bedroom door when he's not home and is very private. He told me that before he met me, no one used to be allowed to enter his bedroom - he wrote on the walls etc. Sometimes he mentions that he feels a 'presence' at night and sometimes wakes up hearing voices. He laughs it off when I try to find out anything more about it. We had a fight about a month ago and he cut himself off from the world, spending days in his bed/room, hardly eating, being in his own world. Now things are back to normal, I'm allowed into his room (I am all the time) and he acts like a normal person. Over the weekend we were out with friends and him and I started having a light-hearted conversation about mental disorders. He then for the first time mentioned that he things he's got symtoms of schizophrenia. (He's very intelligent and reads a lot and spends a lot of his time doing mathematical puzzles etc.) I've also in the past read up on various personality disorders and mental illnesses, including schizophrenia, and he does have some of the symptoms, although they're not all very strong. I've also once thought that he must be suffering from borderline personality disorder, as he also has quite a few of the symptoms.
Sometimes he's a normal person, but other times I find it very difficult....
I know you're probably going to advise me to tell him to see a therapist, but it's not that easy. He went to see a therapist once and only once. He's got something against them for some reason, he tells me that he's smarter than they are and that he knows what they're going to tell him. His mother suffered from depression since he was born, and she went to various therapists/psychologists and he believes that they ruined her life.

Any advice would be great. Thanks.
Answer 383 views

01 Jan 0001

He sounds intelligent and troubled, and some of what he has described do sound like possible symptoms of schizophrenia. It could be in its early stages, when it is easiest to treat successfully--- there's evidence in schizophrenia and similar illnesses, that if they are neglected and go untreated for a considerable time, they become less responsive to proper treatment. Sorry to hear that apparently he had some sort of bad or alarming experience the single time he went to see a shrink of some sort, but it must have been the wrong shrink. Its no use to him to be smarter than they are ( or to try and prove it ), but he needs to let himself trust someone with the appropriate expertise, and have a full proper assessment to clarify what exactly the problem is, and how best it could be treated. Treatment and shrinks have greatly improved since the days when his mother would have been ill, and there's no reason to expect his lif to be ruined by trying a few more shrinks, to find one who fits !
Print him a copy of Lizxa's message, and ask him to read it carefully. To be able to fool a shrink by misleading them isn't clever, as the only person who suffers from such a silly game, is you yourself.
Schizophrenia and similar illnesses can do really well with the right medication, and should NEVER ever be treated by a psychologiost who wants to play games of archeology and dig back itno someone's childhood.
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