How can I relate to what my spouse is going through? How can I be supportive and understanding?
Many partners struggle to understand what their ill loved one deals with every day, so that they can better support and understand them. One of the best things to do is find out as much as you can about schizophrenia as an illness. Check out recommended books and/or other media, visit a local mental health center or hospital, find a support group, and talk to others with first-hand experience. Arming yourself with information about how a person with schizophrenia relates to their world can make it easier for you to interact with and understand them.
Due to the symptoms of the illness itself, medication side-effects, frequent hospitalizations, or a host of other things (both physical and emotional), your partner’s moods and reactions may change rapidly; they may reject or seem to not appreciate your efforts to help. This is always painful and difficult to deal with; however, it can help to recognize that many components of the illness contribute to this behavior, rather than a character flaw or unloving ambivalence in your partner.