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Im too worried to break up with my boyfriend whom has schizophrenia

Community Member

I have been with my boyfriend since 2017, its a long distance relationship and i havent seen him in person since 2017. He lives a 4 hour flight away. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia the year he turned 18, he is now 20 and i am 19.

He is my bestfriend and we laugh together a lot and enjoy eachothers company, but its getting old i cant keep a 'relationship' purely over text especially since its been 2 years , he barely ever wants to call and he cant give a proper reason, i tell him if its due to his condition then to just say so but he just changes the subject, it was even like this since before he was diagnosed. I have my own place and am stable and throughout our whole relationship i beg him to come here beg and beg, i know all about his diagnosis he shares everything with me ive reassured him hundreds of times that ill never judge him and will do anything for him to make him comfortable, i even said we dont have to move in with eachother but can we at least spend a week or two together, id be happy with spending even a few days tgthr i'd travel to him or he is welcome to travel to me. whenever i bring this up he just replies with something along the lines of ' i know i wanna be with you too' and then tries to change the subject, and we move on until i bring it up again a week or two later, sometimes i say more i say can you give me an answer roughly when do you see us together or when can we call more and i tell him how much its hurting me and how worthless i feel to him about the situation, then what happens if i bring that stuff up is that he will become stressed, which causes him to get unwell that moment and i end up putting my feelings aside to comfort him and its a repeating cycle. Ive lost hope that we wll ever be together, he lives on his own his dad is not in the picture and his mum doesnt speak to him and he isnt close to anyone in his family to talk about his issues to apart from the psychiatrist he sees either fortnightly or monthly. he says if he didnt have me he'd have nothing, and i feel like thats true, he has no friends either not even online friends. im so scared that if i was to end things with him that something would happen to him to the point where i just consider staying with him as long as i have to just to make sure hes okay and not alone , i feel like i cant go on i need to move on and better myself as im struggling , how do i do this ill take anyones advice or tips and if anyone has any further questions i will answer

7 Replies 7

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Good Morning BrittneyL2

I am so pleased you have come to chat and to reach out and get some support here. You sound like you are so frustrated and hurt and tired and I am so very sorry that this relationship is not what you had hoped it to be.

I am going to be honest here and feel like you are in a carer role with him rather than a relationship with him. You mention that when he is getting stressed and becoming unwell you put all of your feelings and pain to the side to comfort him, I am just wondering though in your time of pain when you are missing him and so very desperate to see him if he is comforting or reassuring you?

I hear that you feel like you can't go on, can I clarify that you mean in the relationship? I have never been in a long distance relationship but I can hear how much this is hurting you and it must be so very tough to manage, every credit to you though for staying in it as long as you have.

I just wanted to chat about one thing you mentioned ' i know i wanna be with you too' and then tries to change the subject"...I am sorry he is not hearing you and not addressing the issue with you directly and then changing the subject, I am wondering why his actions and his words are not meeting up, have you directly asked him if he indeed wants to be in this relationship with you? As you said this process is hurting you and you are so right in that you need to think about your feelings and your happiness.

I think that your suggestion of moving on to better yourself is a good idea and that you need to take some time for yourself to do some things that you love and get back to being you and enjoying life.

There are some wonderful people here that will come and chat and offer some comfort and support to you, perhaps even call to relationships Australia on 1300 364 277 as they have some professionals that will be able to give you some advice and some tools to manage this.

Hugs to you BrittneyL2 and here to chat anytime you need to


Community Member
Hi BrittneyL2,

I’m sorry to hear you are feeling so sad, and struggling to make a very difficult decision at the moment. I can hear the conflict in your words, as your boyfriend is someone you clearly care about a lot, and you don’t want to cause him any pain. However, this relationship is not fulfilling you, and you are thinking it would be better to leave.

It is very difficult to end any relationship, but even harder when the person you are with is suffering from a mental illness. From what I understand, it seems as though your partner is putting a lot of pressure on you to stay with him by saying that without you he doesn’t have anyone else. Consequently you are now feeling like you can’t end the relationship in order to keep him safe. What a huge responsibility to have on your shoulders! Although his feelings and needs are very important, it is equally as important to look after yourself and your needs. If this relationship is making you feel sad and unfulfilled, it is not your responsibility to stay with him to make sure he is safe. Staying in an unhappy relationship will not only have a negative impact on you, but will also not be benefitting him at all. You can still care about him, treat him with kindness and help him to find other supports, however it isn’t fair on you to have the sole responsibility of being his carer, as Aaronsis pointed out.

I know you are particularly worried that he doesn’t have any other supports except his psychiatrist. Perhaps you could give him the number for Lifeline (13 11 14) and let him know it is a great service to call when he is feeling sad and overwhelmed.

Take care,

Thankyou so much for your reply Aaronsis, it feels so good to have people understand my point after questioning myself for so long.

When I express my emotions he never straight out says, I will be with you soon or anything like that, he more so just tells me he loves me. I will clarify that i dont feel like I can go on with the relationship.

I have asked him so many countless times if he is sure he wants to be in this relationship and that I'll always understand his point no matter what it is, but he always insists that he does want to be in one with me so then I say why wont you be with me then and he just says 'I will be alright' and so on, filling me with false hope.

I never knew about relationships australia i think i definetly will give them a call. Thankyou so much for your caring and understanding words I needed that more than you know!

Sorry I meant to say 'I will be with you, alright" ***

Thankyou for your reply Wazowski.

You and Aaronsis have made me see the situation in a more clearer way and have clarified everything for me. I will definetly give him the life line number and any others I can find, but I am so fearful that he wouldnt use them, he isnt incompetent at taking care of himself most of the time, but sometimes are harder than others and his illness can be very unpredictable every single day. It terrifies me to think of how he would feel if he was having a bad episode but felt he had absolutely no one to go to for emotional and a little bit of mental support to get him through it, like he at least had me to go to before. I cant even explain how sorry I feel for him, if I'm not there who is going to chat with him and laugh with him and watch movies with him even if its all online these days, at least its some form of human contact and love.

Hi BrittneyL2

I am so pleased that you have felt supported here and yes it is wonderful to have people to chat to and help share problems...it really makes a difference.

It is great that you have asked your partner directly if he does want to be in the relationship with you, how are you feeling about his response of "I will be right"? It is not really a clear answer is it and I can see why you are feeling so very confused and full of false hope.

Perhaps a break from this relationship will give you both some time to discover in fact what you both really want to do and I hear you when you say that you will worry about him and who will look after him, but it is hard to take care of him remotely and you are really only providing him over the phone support. He can reach out to help lines and support services if he needs that, you are supposed to be his partner, lover and friend. I am not suggesting that you stop supporting him but maybe from a friend role where you have less "expectations' from the relationship.

I am so pleased you thought that giving RA a call, they are truly wonderful and will be able to help you, I would be very interested to hear what they say.

I hope you are feeling ok today BrittneyL2 and hope to chat some more.



Hi Brittney

It sounds like you have are a very loving and caring person, and your boyfriend should be delighted to have you in his life. But it also sounds to me that everything about this relationship is about his needs being met, and none of yours. I understand he has schizophrenia, but provided he is stable, that condition doesn't make him helpless. He is perfectly able to make his own decisions and be accountable for them.

If I was friends with you in real life, I would sit you down with a coffee and gently ask you if this is how you see yourself spending the rest of your life, or at least the rest of your 20's, which are arguably the best years of your life. With a man who hasn't made the effort to come and see you in two years, and you walking on eggshells concerned about his health and how he's coping every single day. Your whole existence seems to be about him - is his whole existence about you in return? And when I say that, I mean is he dedicated 100% to your happiness as much as you are to his?

It sounds like you are almost afraid to leave him, in case he can't cope with not having you there to support him, but you'd be surprised how quickly people can recover. To be honest, it sounds that you would suffer the most in the relationship ending, as you clearly have so much emotionally invested in it. Again, I would query if he has invested the same, when you objectively view his behaviour. If a friend was in the same situation, what advice would you give them?

Regardless of this man's mental health status, that is not your responsibility, and you are not responsible for his life, only your own.

I hope you find happiness.