Jan 23, 2013. Introduction- The woman, Lu, whom this story is about is a foreigner. She came here after meeting her now husband in her own country. Her husband is 20 years her senior and he has children her age. This is only relevant after the fact, because for years she had told me how they didn’t like her amongst other things which I’ll reveal later. English is her second language, and all her family and lifetime friends live abroad. After she moved here she took ESL classes and progressed in her English in all aspects; reading, writing, speaking and audial understanding. She has been living in the US for almost 8 years give or take a year.
At this time, I need to make it clear that I do not have any background in psychotherapy or anything of the like. My only experience with mental illness is my own and that is depression. But I would like to point out(as ridiculous as it may seem) that I did use tactics I saw used in the criminals shows I watch. Laugh all you want, but they worked up to a point. One being that I played into her delusions to keep her trust, but not so much to add to her psychosis. Fact is someone could actually be in her computer.
I put this information here at the beginning of this story to give the reader some understanding to her difficulties and isolation, which I hope will be made more evident as the story progresses. And that I believe I acted with caution, caring and understanding.
The story begins on the 7th of January, after my husband got a call from his friend Red, asking if his wife and kids could spend some time at our house. He then asked me if it was ok for Lu, Ed(4yo) and Sue(1yo) to come stay with us for a while, I said fine. After he got off the phone he told me how Red has been dealing with Lu’s wild accusations, and that he had been confiding in him for about six months but the last month had gotten considerably worse. She accused him of inappropriately touching their son, taking away her passport, phone and Internet, infidelity, she told him people were following her and ridiculing her everywhere she went. My husband told me not to mention any of this to Lu, because she already feels and fears that Red is trying to take her kids away from her. He also let me know that he thinks she has schizophrenia but he can not say for sure. The next day Lu called me and asked if she and her kids could come and stay for awhile, again I said yes. She then told me that her and Red were having problems, that he doesn’t help with the kids or around the house and she has no where to turn. I reassured she could come here and we could talk and she could relax a little because we’d help with the kids while she was here. She said thank you and that she’d talk to Red and ask him to bring her here. A few days went by and Friday the 11th she called asking if I could come pick her up. Now because English is her second language, I brought a friend with me who speaks her first language, so there would be minimal misunderstandings. Now before I left to go to Lu’s I made a conscious decision not to pass any quick judgement based on what my husband said or by the incidents told to me.
Day 1-After we arrived at her house, she had some errands to run, I drove in the car with Lu and my friend followed behind in my car. As we were driving Lu asked if I read license plates, I do. She pointed to a plate and asked me if I knew what it said, I did not. She told me that in her native tongue they use numbers as letters, and that the plate said “lawyer” in her language. Then she pointed to another one and another, each one was a word aimed at ridiculing or meant to intimidate her. At that moment a plane was flying low(airport nearby) and she leaned over, pointed to the plane, and said whispered to me “see they’re following me”. Still whispering she asked if I knew about them, the “secret society”. She told me not to say anything, they’re watching her everywhere, then she said I probably shouldn’t have told you, now I’m going to be in trouble.
We got to her house and we all talked, she went in and out of these types of breaks from reality.
But the story that really got me concerned was when she told me that she thinks Red touched Ed’s bottom area, and that she couldn’t tell anyone because “the Jewish people control everything”. I told her that he needs to be check by a doctor because if he is being molested someone needs to pay! She moved in close to me and said, “no, please don’t tell anyone the secret society will kill me if they find out”. Other random things that she had said that night were that her husband has video cameras in the house, and that her phone and computer are bugged.
Day 2&3- Lu and I had many talks these 2 days so I can not say with certainty what was revealed when. But in those two days I mentioned a number of times “mental illness”. I wanted to put it out there in the general sense, mentioning; anxiety, depression and bipolar that they all are mental illnesses, and many people have mental illnesses. I for one have depression and I take meds for it and it is well controlled and in check. However, she was not happy about my comment and emphatically denied having any mental problems, stating that her problem was her husband, that she was stressed and he was trying to make her out to be crazy so he can take the kids away from her. Do you know how hard it is to reason with someone who is having a break from reality trying to gently, covertly tell them they are crazy, when that’s the very thing they are afraid of?! Impossible!
Day 4- revelation?! That morning Lu let me know that Sue showed her that she probably does have some mental illness and that she’d get counseling. A break through I thought. Though to some extent I do believe that children are protect by angels and may be able to feel things that adults can’t, but where is that line drawn? To further this incident, her daughter also pulled on her earrings which made Lu take that as a sign that her daughter wanted her to remove whatever was blocking her ability to listen, that she needs to listen and pay attention more. Later she thanked me for letting her come to my house and teaching her so much. She told me she gets it now and understands a lot more and realizes she needs to focus more on her children. Then she asked about the program, is that how I learned all this stuff(I’m guessing it was having an organized pantry and a cordless vac and other things that make my life a little easier), had I been in the program too? When I told her no she got a little mad and said I didn’t have to lie!
Day 5- she feels better and leaves. She feels as though she has learned a lot, and understands what she needs to do and she has to take her son to his classes, because that’s what a good mother does.
So in addition to everything above, for about 4 years, she has told me on several occasions that she thought that Red was cheating on her. At those times I tried to reassure her, tell her to find some evidence, something and I just listened also. Because in truth it may have been a possibility. Men cheat, not all men but it could happen. As it turns out he did not. On some of those occasions he’d actually been in meetings with my husband. Now in those years I had no inkling that she had any mental issues other than the typical stresses of a mom with a new baby. Being a stay at home mom with a baby while your husbands at work, no family or friends close by to help or talk too, limited English at that time, understandably cause that type of fear(which was my thought). Shortly after Ed was born there was a family get together. Red, his children, Lu, the baby, family and friends were all there, after that party she told me that his family pricked her sons finger to get blood to check his DNA. Back then my thought was “wow” these are some really mean people, can’t they let their father be happy and get on with his life. Another time she told me that they would pinch her son just to make him cry. Again never thought anything past what she had told me, I tried to comfort her and support her as much as I could whenever there were these family occasions to go to. Sadly, now I think those incidences may have been indicators to her evolving psychosis.
Progression- I believe she may have had schizophrenia almost unnoticeably for years and then the birth of her first child was the first stressor to set it off. That’s when she started talking about Red’s family and the things they said or done. Later she became suspicious of her husband having affairs. But even during those couple of years she was still very social. Than, I believe her second break was after the birth of her daughter, she became more withdrawn. It was one of those things where you think of it for a minute than dismiss it as nothing. Now that I look back I notice that they did’t come to our family events anymore, there was always an excuse. But the last break which is the one that has me the most concerned is that her mother is ill. Her mother is abroad and Lu received notice in December that her mom needs surgery and she was waiting for Lu to come and visit and that’s when she’d go in for the surgery. So Lu starts looking for her passport, it’s expired! She snaps mentally, she accuses her husband of taking her passport, her phone, the Internet, her CC. She doesn’t trust him to help her with anything. Two weeks later is when we got the phone call that started all this. When she was with me I did help her get the papers for her to travel back home.
Indicators- “secret society”, Jews are in control of everything, in a program at my house, video cameras in her home, her phone is bugged, computer is bugged, she is being followed, messages in pictures that she has taken, messages in license plates, her husband wants to prove she is crazy so he can take her children away.
Husband- before I got to involved I asked him point blank “do you want a divorce?” He said no, he still loved her, he’d like to make it work because the kids need their mother, but he can not go on with the way things are. This is a 60yo man, I may be deluding myself, but I’m certain most 60yo men maybe even women would not want the job of raising 2 young children by themselves.
My efforts- now with all these happenings bouncing around in my head, I start reading and looking and learning. Schizophrenia, paranoia, the law, where to go, how to get diagnosed. My conclusion is she has paranoid schizophrenia or a brain lesion that mimics it. So reading that PS is the easiest to treat out of the 3 types you can get, and that it is progressive, it is forever and stressors can cause major psychotic episodes, I get started looking for help. After looking at dozens of possible psychiatrists or treatment facilities near their house(which is way out there) I find nothing. Than there is the added complication of her not having an medical coverage, why because she refused to sign the papers because she didn’t trust Red. I did get her to sign them but the insurance doesn’t go into affect until 2/1. Finally, I find a general behavioral health number to call, Magellan, I explain my story and the fact that she is not a danger to herself or her kids(only important fact), however he thinks I should take her to a psychiatric center, one that is free. We go downtown wait our turn, she goes in and wants to talk alone. I ask the people at the front desk how is the person going to help her if she doesn’t know she schizophrenic? That’s not what they do there! Great! I have a fricking melt down outside a psychiatric center because no one sees what I see. So back to her house. More breaks with reality and I about to go home, I’m in my car and we’re talking she tells me again it’s Reds fault her counselor knows this and agrees with her and everyone she talks too tells her she needs to get away from her husband that he is no good for her. I realize at that moment if this is true no one will ever see passed what she tells them about her husband. I return to the house and start a process to have her rights removed to have her admitted into a hospital. They informed me they’d call within 24 business hours.
Finally the call- I relate some events to the woman along with my concerns and she assures me that I’m doing the right thing, but that I do need proof. Because ultimately it’s my word against hers. Great! So in order to prove that she’s crazy and no one is video taping or recording her, I have to videotape or record her. Yup I find it ironic too. I let her husband know that I’ve gotten nowhere. He decides to let her go to see her mom with the kids. Now in my mind I’m freaking out. I’m thinking ok she is going abroad with her kids, undiagnosed schizophrenia, her mom has an ulceration on her breast almost the size of my hand(breast cancer?) and may die, if that happens Lu is going to have a major psychotic break. At wits end I go to church and ask for help, the wonderful lady there gives me a number she uses and they come to your house if needed. I received 2 more phone calls that day from Red about incidents with Lu. After the 2nd call for him, I call the crisis line and again relay the story, they offered to meet me at her house. They came, took notes, asked questions, gave some numbers for family counseling and left. For the 3rd, 4th or 5th time I was told as long as she is of no harm to herself or others there is nothing we can do. I said ok I get it so I’ll call you when she walks into a school and shoots 26 kids. They didn’t like that answer and told me to call when she becomes a threat.
Hello- people do you not read your own information on schizophrenia? It is progressive, it is forever, there are no warning signs for a major psychotic break, stress exacerbates schizophrenia, and it easily controlled with medication.
Complicating matters- to make things even worse, she will not take any medicine without talking to a counselor to diagnose her. So how long do you think it will take her to tell someone who is controlled by Jews or the SS that they are after her? Or will she continue to convey the stress and anxiety of a controlled housewife left to tend the kids alone? Lets just suppose after 6months of therapy it is finally realized that she has schizophrenia, then the challenge of convincing her that the meds aren’t going to cause kidney or liver problems. Oh yes she looked the pill I gave her and it had side effects, no more of those pills! This is smart woman, she is not stupid by any means.
Almost the end-that night when the crisis people left and I had exhausted every resource I could find, I came straight out and told her I believe she has schizophrenia. She said ok. I turned to her and said it was that easy? She replied I’ve been called whore, bitch, stupid, what’s one more name. Ugh! I told her it was not an insult, I am seriously concerned for your health, if its not schizophrenia than it may be a brain lesion or something in your brain, but you do have a problem. And my fear is that you are going to another country and no one knows what you may or may not have, your mother is ill, and if you have a major episode and no one knows you have schizophrenia, I will not be there to help. She assured me she’d get counseling there, that she knows doctors and psychologists there, and she’d be fine. The problem is I don’t speak the language and since I never know where she is in her lucidity she may or may not know doctors there.
The end- has yet to be written yet because she is still here waiting for her travel documents.
UPDATE- Sept 13, 2014.
Lu and the children have been in a foreign country since about Feb 2013. She is with her family their and has since gotten an apartment, but unable to get a job. Throughout this time nearly 2 years her schizophrenia has been progressing in its disease. In the beginning upon her arrival “home” no one noticed any oddities in her behavior and they had actually believed her stories about being treated poorly by her husband and others whom she was in contact with here in the US.
But after several months her father was the first to notice something amiss with Lu. He even talked to Red about it, but denied that fact when confronted by Lu on the subject. Well now her mother has finally noticed and realized that Lu has problems.
However, what brings me here today to update is answered prayer. Ever since this began and I reached a dead end on my part, I felt helpless and ineffectual, so I did the only thing left that I felt I could do and that was to pray. I had exhausted every mean available to me within the parameters of the law that were reasonable, that is to say, I did not pursue the avenue of removing her personable rights by audio or video taping our conversations to prove my allegations of her delusional ramblings.
Essentially after the last resort of telling her my concern and hoping against all hope that she’d listen to me and start some type of therapy and take medications that would slow the progression of the disease, she instead took my statement as an insult. Whereupon I realized that at that point the only person that could help now was God. So I prayed.
As of today, I was informed that Lu started attending church some time ago and was befriended by a couple there who happen to be in the mental health field. Red had gone to visit Lu and the kids as he typically does, when this couple happened to come by her apartment to check up on her and the kids. This couple and Red had a lengthy discussion and he confirmed what they had suspicions of, that Lu has schizophrenia.
Red found out through them that this church has formed a group that had decided to look after Lu and the children. So now Red has contacts, which he didn’t have before, that will update him and will act as the liaisons for him and the situation going on abroad. This should help him out a lot because he only knew what Lu would tell him, which wasn’t much, if it was even factual.
In case you’re wondering the children are doing fine. As a mother Lu continues to love and mother her kids in all the proper ways; feeding, cleaning, clothing, etc… The only area she has neglected is sending her son to school out of fear, which she compensates for by taking them out to the library, park, etc, instead.
Well that’s all the info I have for now. I’m so thankful that God answers pray even if it does take years to happen, His timing and understanding is perfect, my no so much.