Ask A Schizophrenic


#1

I am making a thread for interested caregivers to ask an ill person for their views or feelings on a topic. Please be respectful of the feelings and understand that our perceptions are often very different from someone without mental illness.

Keep in mind that each person is different and so is their experience. Some of us do have insight into our illness even though that is not the norm. It’s rare enough that the medical community often states that we mentally ill cannot have insight. Depends on the doctor, really.

ASKERS…ask a question and I or anyone else who has SZ/SZA will or can answer. Please limit it to 2 questions per post if short questions or 1 if a long question.

ANSWERERS please tag the person you are replying to. Answer the question to the best of your ability. Rude or inappropriate posts will be flagged- remember it is hard for a non-ill person to see things through our eyes. Be HONEST but respectful.


#2

Thanks @ZombieMombie - this is a good idea. I will have to think of a question.


#3

Can I help you @ZombieMombie?


#4

Of course! I saw you here and that you were trying to give answers like me. Gave me this idea!


#5

@ZombieMombie
Really awesome idea to help facilitate understanding!

I’d like to go ahead and start with two open ended question, if it isn’t too presumptuous of me:

  1. Is there anything you want caregivers and family to learn, or to start doing that would be helpful in general?

  2. Is there anything that caregivers seem to do commonly which is absolutely not helpful, even though it might seem like it would be?


#6

@wreklus

  1. Is there anything you want caregivers and family to learn, or to start doing that would be helpful in general?

That we are not being obstinate on purpose. The things we think and feel are real to us. The human brain is a strong organ! Everything a human sees or feels is processed by this super computer we all have in our heads. Always remember that these things we see and feel are just as real to us as the things you see and feel everyday. It doesn’t matter how often someone says our delusions aren’t real- they ARE until medicated or therapies away.

  1. Is there anything that caregivers seem to do commonly which is absolutely not helpful, even though it might seem like it would be?

Yelling or so called tough love. As I said earlier our problems feel just as real as real life actually is. You can’t tell it away or punish it away. There may come a time when you have to step away, only when someone needs to be hospitialsed or jailed for their behavior. Don’t abuse or tolerate abuse. Tough love is only good when you have to stop your loved one from hurting themselves or hurting you.


#7

@ZombieMombie - Thank you. I have been told many times to use tough love. Fortunately, I said - I’m not doing that.

Here’s my question. My son, dz paranoid sz last May and is now on the monthly Invega shot 117. He has no insight and the shot is court ordered. He will go off the shot when the court order is lifted. Is there anything I could say/explain to him now while he is clear regarding the paranoia starting again if he goes off. I said what if the paranoia starts again and he says “It won’t”. He is 28.


#8

@DianeR
This is a hard one. Really there is nothing you can do except request for an extension if you are sure he won’t comply. Maybe explain to him that staying on the shot will keep him from going through the court process again.


#9

That’s a good point. I will tell him that and it will keep him out of the hospital. Thanks!


#10

Hi Zombie,
did you have any tests that confirmed your diagnosis? Can you be a SZ without psychosis? My daughter says she does not have sz as she was not on any drugs for the last 5 years and she has not had any hallucinations since 5 years ago. She is now in ordered treatments, but she wants to get off. She was under a huge stress when her voices started initially.


#11

@Mypreciousdaughter So terrible to hear that your daughter has to be on meds with no history in five years. Hire a lawyer.


#12

@ZombieMombie
Does friendships improve someone’s condition? I have heard it does but I am not sure?


#13

@Mypreciousdaughter

My diagnosis is based on my medical history and observations. I don’t know if tests are do e for just sz/sza.

As for psychosis-free sz, I’m not a doctor so can’t answer this. Sorry I can’t be of more help.


#14

@venelina_33

This is a tough one. Many of us crave friendships but our illness causes us to chase away friends. People who are close to us are often targets of our illness. Like voices will say the friend or family is trying to hurt us in some way. Or they will threaten to hurt the fire d so we push them away. My own experience is that I feel - even while now stable- that My friends really hate me and are just tolerating me for some reason.


#15

How do you deal with things in extreme times of stress? Do you use suggestions from a therapist to help you through these times?


#16

@ZombieMombie We talked about this today. Thanks for your advice!


#17

Hope it helps! 151515


#18

@dkgreg

For me I have had a real problem with stress. I tend to just fall apart. Or did. This past month with the new higher dose of Invega I am dealing better and using some suggestions from my therapist.

My biggest problem is constantly focusing on the negative until it consumes me. I have heard others do the same. When this happens I try to stop what I am doing or change activity. Even something as simple as changing positions while lying in bed helps change the thoughts.

Naming off 3 positive things a day helped me greatly this past month focus on the better things even when stress hit. And trust me I have stress. I have 5 kids at home who all decide to be needy at the same time lol. On top of that we are low income. Then add things that happen to stress you out like two days ago the brakes went on my van. I didn’t fall apart!


#19

How did you get court ordered treatments? We have repeatedly been told unless he is in danger of hurting himself or others, nothing can be done, and that he has a right to refuse meds.?


#20

Thank you so much for doing this. Reading the questions asked and your answers has helped already. I guess I would like to ask if you’ve always had insight or if it took years to gain the insight you have today.? Also what helped you to gain insight?