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So scared of inheriting Delusional Disorder

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So scared of inheriting Delusional Disorder

Postby Throwaway44020567 » Sun Jun 14, 2020 9:25 pm

Hi everyone, I am a first time poster on this forum, and I'm just so glad that there's some kind of outlet for what's been going on in my family life.

I have a 57 year old father with Delusional Disorder, who has been consumed by this illness since 2007/2008. I think this illness came about when he essentially lost a personal injury trial a few months prior. He dedicated about 5 years of his life into this case. I guess he tried to make sense of it by (wrongfully) blaming my mother for conspiring with the insurance company against him. At the same time, my little brother was diagnosed with Autism. It was a very stressful transition time in my family.

I'm going to spare the details of how his illness manifests, because it is so similar to what everyone has been posting here. This has been a huge strain on my family (my mother, myself, and two siblings).

He does better when he is on antipsychotic medications, and for a period of about 3 years, he seemed to be his old self again. He worked, socialized well, and just seemed to be a good guy in general. As far as I could tell, he just had occasional moodiness (who doesnt?). I thought this was a miracle and that this disorder was controlled and a problem of the past.

That was the case until he started to become non complaint with his medications (yet again). He is currently ordered by a mental health tribunal to take his antipsychotic medications every month, and he still defies the order. He tries to trick doctors in various ways to say that he is compliant. Essentially, the police have to show up at the home in order for him to go get his shot.

When he is well, he is able to work, socialize, and be a productive member of the family. When he is unwell, he mismanages money, does not care to work, and essentially makes accusations against everyone and makes life difficult.

My dad needs to be medicated. And once he's medicated, he needs to go to therapy. However, that's not what I am writing about.

I am so scared that I will inherit delusional disorder just like my father. It seems that there is mental illness in the family. My father has DD. His brother was an alcoholic (who knows what kind of disorder he was hiding?). My grandfather (dad's side) certainly had some sort of mental health issues later in his life (but he was a WW2 survivor - a lot of this was attributed to his war experiences). My grandmother (dad's side) has a family history of mental illness as well. My mother's side, as far as I know, is clear.

I am a 30 year old man. I am currently single, but I have a good job and would like to start a family sometime in the coming years. I've had no real mental health issues other than family and typical life-related stress. I experimented with drugs in my early 20s, but they were never an addiction. Overall, I would say that I've done better in school and work life than my peers.

I spoke with a psychologist about my concerns, but I think she just did not understand DD. She seemed to conflate the disorder with schizophrenia. She basically told me that since i've not had any psychotic symptoms up to this point in my life, and that my siblings do not have any psychotic disorders, that it is extremely unlikely that I will ever go on to develop a psychotic disorder like schizophrenia or DD.

However, DD can be onset at any time in your life. I am so scared that I will be a burden to my (present and future) family. I am so scared that I will become a shell of myself and create trouble for those I love the most. The problem is that there is no certainty about what my future will hold.

Any help and insight would be appreciated.
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Re: So scared of inheriting Delusional Disorder

Postby justonemoreperson » Mon Jul 20, 2020 7:24 am

No one has answered, so I'll give it a go...

The fact that you're worried about it is a good first step, as it means you're aware that you may entertain unrealistic thoughts. The issue many face is that they refuse to accept that their delusion is what it is and argue beyond reason that it's true.

However, there is a danger that your obsession with getting delusions gets to a point where it itself becomes a delusion; that you're so convinced that you'll get it that you'll see it where it doesn't exist.

I don't know if you've ever seen a film called A Beautiful Mind, but if not then it tells the story of John Nash who was deluded to the point of vivid, visual hallucinations.

Medication etc didn't work as a long-term strategy, but he eventually managed to cope with the delusions by employing a real-world test as to their existence.

It's not the same as you, but it might be worth considering some tests that you can deploy to test any beliefs against reality, even posting them here to get an more objective opinion might help to confirm you're living in reality without the need to become obsessed with the idea.
I'm not arguing; I'm explaining why I'm right.
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