I have classic stereotypical paranoid schizophrenia. I am remarkably organized, I just have a case of extreme positive symptoms and low negative symptoms. I used to sometimes be a little disorganized, but I mostly attribute it to being distracted by hallucinations and delusions, if I was speaking one-on-one with a doctor, I sounded more than sane, I was eloquent, articulate and intelligent in conversations. The thing is, when they asked me what I was hearing or thinking at the moment, it was very NOT sane.
Disorganization is sort of a dead end. Some of the newer drugs do something for it, but it’s something to live with and cope with, not something to expect to go away. I know that doesn’t sound optimistic, but with your help he seems to do remarkably well for someone with disorganization.
Disorganized is worse. It’s maybe THE worst, because catanoic people are just hopeless, to be perfectly honest. (they’re basically in a living coma, they’re beyond repair)
But this doesn’t mean that James can’t live a decent life- he already is fighting his schizophrenia and is doing well despite it. Disorganized patients need support, first of all, and they need insight. Insight will help preserve his ego. Once a person who has schizophrenia stops feeling guilty for having schizophrenia or what I often call “being schizophrenic” (i.e. behaving under the influence of symptoms, don’t take it personally, I would still be there if my meds didnt work like magic), they can be more at peace with themselves.
Just don’t try too hard to fake normal. I’m not normal, I don’t pretend to be. When I make new friends, I tell them after a while about my condition, I usually tell them right off the bat if they are fellow psych majors (they understand that recovery is possible, especially with medication adherence).
I will have to get a doctors note from my psychiatrist explaining my condition to the powerlifting team coach when I join my gym’s team this summer (explaining that I am on medications and have the handicap of being on multiple classes of tranquilizers). I am still pretty strong, I just can’t push myself quite as hard as a healthy person can, and that needs to be addressed.
I have had to explain to professors about my condition to excuse absences or sleeping in class. Only one asked for a note, and she gave me an extension when I brought a note to her. The other professors were psych profs and actually congratulated me for being one of the top students in the class despite being mentally ill. I gave one a note anyways even though he took my word, I had been napping through his class for a month but when I was awake I spoke up and nailed hard questions he asked the class.