Adult Children of Schizophrenic Parents

My mom was diagnosed over 30 years ago, and unless you knew her very well, you could assign her behavior to "little quirks." As her child, and now as an adult, I realize that my emotional and social behaviors were directly affected by being raised by a parent with Schizophrenia. I am still, and will probably always be, self-evaluating the missing pieces that "normal" functioning adults have when raising children and coping with society in general. These missing pieces have affected my children and most of my adult relationships - even my ability to maintain long term employment.

I am now in a relationship with a man whose ex-wife is also an adult child of a Schizophrenic parent. Interacting with her is often like looking into a reflection of who I once was before I actively sought to investigate my own emotional and social shortcomings as a result of having a childhood primarily influenced by a parent with Schizophrenia.

Being a novice, with only the benefit of my own self-evaluation and subsequent coping mechanisms, I can identify with many of the ex-wife's "quirks." I witness her interaction with her children, whom I am partial caregiver for, and am greatly saddened by her lack of boundaries and other parenting skills that I have had to force myself to learn in my adulthood. Although I notice these "quirks," I have difficulty assigning them to a specific nomenclature that would help me further understand and address the source of her actions or inactions.

I do not wish to be her therapist (he has one of those for whatever good it does). My goal is to understand and address her ineffective parenting and discipline in a manner that will be most effective to both her and the children we are raising together. It's one thing for me to address my own coping mechanisms and evoke change within myself - I've been doing this for years; but now I am in a situation where I see someone like me who is in need of these same changes - and I can't do it for her, I can only bring it to her attention.

[On a side note: Yes, it is very frustrating to deal with "someone like me." Sometimes the tension builds while biting my tongue while trying to be understanding of where she came from. I want to say, "Don't you know your children need to bathe once a day?!!" But, no.... she doesn't know... The reality is that she missed that, and several other crucial components of her childhood.]

Are there any online resources/ articles that address at length the parenting issues of adult children of Schizophrenic parents?

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Jun 6, 2011

inlinder hun, nice to meet you. the only thing that i can pass on to you is an organization called nami. check out

national alliance for mental illness. there may be a chapter near you that you can contact as they have many resources available on schizophrenia as well as information that you could possibly pass on. in any case hun. they could advise you what would be the best way to handle the situation your in as well as maybe give you more information to further your recovery.

Apr 7, 2012

Hi, parenting is difficult when you have a parent with schizophrenia. We're over here having the same discussion on Facebook. Come and browse and 'like' us to add your support too, or your own stories

My Mother's Daughter

fly's picture
Nov 30, 2015

So sorry of the upbringing.. I gave my child to a functional home. .and they are doing great.. This. Is so true this problem. Can not excel in the business..relationship. World. They cannot bring up a child well..sorry you are a victim of thatt


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