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How do I stop this behaviour? Parents gaslighting (28 years old M)

Community Member
Saying that I'm not on medication when I am on the maximum dose (I gained 20 kg on the medication). Using that as leverage to tell me that I keep eating a lot, don't save money (I have $10k saved in the bank and $13k in stocks). Yes I eat junk food - but generally really cheap.
Constantly checking on me - telling me to brush teath, wear pyjamas etc. Phoning at night and asking me where I am. Sometimes coming into my room at 1am to see if I am sleeping waking me up.
Telling my sister I am suicidal and that my personality has changed (i.e. I have been eating out lots due to hunger from the medication) - telling my sister I am going to die if I don't stop eating out and its part of my mental illness - my sister did not know about this before and just told them about this just yesterday. She came into my room balling her eyes out thinking I was going to die. Then proceeded to repeat what my parents said.
I was checking for ID in the house for when I move out permanently - dad has a folder of letters I wrote to myself when breaking up with my girlfriend - this was from 10 years ago when I was in hospital. I also lied about having auditory hallucinations in the hospital which in actual fact were me just thinking about the girl. They still think it was some sort of psychosis I had these past 10 years. I also made up all the other symptoms just to make sure, I have been going with this for a while and don't want them to know about what girls I should date - I am a med student so know what symptoms to say. They want me to date some sort of model.
Saying that if I leave the house "they would rather die without me"
I wanted to change my medications (approved from psychiatrist) to another medication which has a better side effect profile however my father said "your mum can't sleep at night if you do that." I checked on my mum 10 mins later and she was sleeping just fine. Saying that I need to support myself and they can't afford to support me because money is low - meanwhile dad has a BMW and we live in a mansion and have 3 houses.
I have also just finished medical school and secured a job as a doctor and lecturer at the uni. I am keen to move out permanently. Also really need my own space it is suffocating living here and I am getting way too sheltered.
5 Replies 5

Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Pfuddy~

Welcome here to the Forum, and congratulations on gaining your qualifications and securing positions as a doctor and and at uni. These realy are very real triumphs.

Although I've tried to read your post carefully I'm afraid a couple of bits do confuse me a little. However your parents' behavior seems on the face of it unjustified and over the top.

To say you are not on meds when you are and then saying you should not change them seems bizarre, and to constantly check on your welfare, ringing up, entering your room in the middle of the night and suggesting eating out is fatal all might be caused by excessive fear for your welfare. As might suggesting if you leave they might die without you, whilst at the same time saying you need to support yourself.

To baldly tell your sister you are suicidal might not be prudent either even if it were true , it certainly upset her.

So far it would only seem common sense to leave that restrictive household and live on a place of your own. It sounds very much like you will have no trouble supporting yourself.

However the bits I don't really understand now came to the fore. You did say that some 10 years ago when a relationship ended you were hospitalized, diagnosed as having had some sort of psychosis, perhaps at least in part of your accounts of auditory hallucinations and said:

"They still think it was some sort of psychosis I had these past 10
years. I also made up all the other symptoms just to make sure, I have
been going with this for a while ...

Does this mean you have been doing this to your parents who are under the impression you really are currently suffering a mental conditon and that their behavior is based on this?

I can understand somebody trying to prevent their parents dictating what sort of person to date, after all it realy is none of their business.

Look, I apologize if I'm misunderstanding, very easy to do in a written post rather than normal face to face conversation.

The fact you are working with a psychiatrist to obtain the best regimen is a reassuring element. Many meds have most unwelcome side-effects, weight gain being a common one, as I have found out in the past.

Perhaps you might like to come back and talk more about this situation?



Community Member


Preface: I have had previous depressive episodes.

This might sounds crazy. Basically 10 years ago I was diagnosed as having schizophrenia. They tried all sorts of drugs and found one that worked the best. I was on this for 4 years. In this time I passing medical school sometimes even topping a few subjects.

Strap yourself in.

I was hospitalised on treatment because what happened was I was in love with a girl for 2 years without telling anyone.

My parents were controlling and I kicked me out of the house because I did not conform to their expectations when arguing about something. Their last words to me were 'don't worry he's leaving soon.' I tried to cut them off at 17. Well that was difficult because I had no money and had to contact them for my 50$ a week. Their only source of knowing what I was doing was through one girl who had helped me through medical school. I was had a major crush on this girl but did not tell them about it (they would disapprove). So I was in love with this girl, but did not want to see her since my parents would find out what I am doing so was in a difficult situation. When I went home my parents would ask the first thing: "have you spoken with that girl." I said no because I was ashamed I had a crush on her. My father would also rant and rave about me spending too much of the 50$ a week whenever I went home so I had to be really cheap with my spending.

So the episode:

I might of accidently stalked her and knew one of her friends. One of her friends happened to be the mentor group leader for my 2nd year class. So when I visited home - same thing "have you spoken to that girl." I said no. But I wanted to contact the girl so I sent her friend a message saying I was in love with her friend. My parents found out and cut off all contact.

That's when the episode happened. I basically went through a 'breakup' and was tearing and spewing nonsense and doing diary things in my room. When I went to hospital they asked some questions and I claimed I was seeing things and was hearing voices (which was me thinking about the girl). I then faked all the 'thought broadcasting' etc. I did not want my parents to find out. So I was hospitalised. No medication worked (I claimed my thoughts about the girl were the 'voices'). The only thing that worked after all medication was one antipsychotic medication after a couple of months (coincidently this is when I learnt how to get over the chick).

How do I fix this

Hi Pfuddy

Well done and your hard work at Uni and being qualified as a doctor...Thats a huge effort!

Croix (the member above) has posted noteworthy counsel above for you

I used to have chronic anxiety for years followed by moderate anxiety issues and weight gain can sometimes be a problem with meds..albeit not common from my own experience

You mentioned "How do I fix this".....Do you mean medication? Sorry Pfuddy.....just trying to understand your question if thats okay!

Can I ask why you told your sister that you wanted to pass away?

The forums are a safe and non judgemental place for you to post Pfuddy

my best


Community Member

Sorry the first post is a bit confusing.

No one had ever told my sister about mental illness. My dad wanted me to stop eating out so much and save money (he had been nagging me for the past week about it). So he told my sister that I was mentally ill that's why I was eating out so much (yeah I'm on hungry-making meds) and made her come to my room and she had a concerned look on her face and started balling her eyes out. She said that my eating habits have changed and that I should consider seeing a doctor about it and she was concerned for my welfare.

Yeah I get he was trying to help but I really did not want my sister to know about my depression and my dad used that to get her tell me not to eat out so much. Yeah I think he's lost the plot over something so trivial. I really wanted at least someone in the family to not treat me with kid gloves which gets annoying - the main reason why I don't tell anyone.

Hey Pfuddy

No worries....I did misread your post...whoops! Still..not a proactive comment from a parent as you mentioned....that the last thing you needed!

Its your business what you eat Pfuddy....I can sort of understand your dads concern yet not a good move

Ive had chronic anxiety since 1983 when I was 23.....and its a bad place to be in. Schizophrenia is no picnic either Pfuddy! I hope you have the support of a caring doc going through this

I have been on a SSRI and a anti anxiety med for 23 years....and even though I was very anti meds to start with...It was the best move I have made with my mental health...Gave me the peace I needed to work with the counsellors

my kind thoughts for you Pfuddy