Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

How Much Do People With Psychosis Hide?


#1

Hindsight is 20/20, right? Today, I’ve been thinking backwards because a friend has a daughter who is having a teacher come to the house for homeschooling because of her anxiety.

I’ll be the last person to downplay anxiety, but the daughter goes out with friends, spends weekends away from home, and does all kinds of stuff as long as it doesn’t involve school. Her grades are fine, so it’s not that she can’t do the work, but I guess maybe she has problems with the other kids. She’s got a real smart mouth, so I’m thinking it’s gotten her in some trouble.

My son had 3 psychotic breaks during high school and the most he missed was a week during his first one. Somehow, he managed to graduate with fairly good grades. However, after he got out, he would make comments about school from time to time. He said people would ask him if he was the devil sometimes when he was going from class to class, he supposedly met some girl who was the Princess of St Croix (we went there for vacation before his senior year), and how one day he was sad and everyone else there started crying and they didn’t know why.

No one ever offered to have him do some at-home studies, and he had an IEP in place & everything.

I’m kind of wondering if his meds kept him just to the point where he could keep the psychosis under control enough that he could hide it, and if he’s never really been in a full recovery for all these years. He would say that the Zyprexa didn’t work, even though I could see where he appeared better. He always said that nothing helped but the opiates he got addicted to.

I need to read and ponder the LEAP method some more so I learn how to better use those techniques even though he’s accepting treatment at the moment.

All this time I thought I understood what was going on, and it’s like I had an epiphany that I haven’t had a clue.

I just needed to get that out, and wondered what you guys think? or if you’ve ever thought the same kind of thing.


#2

My son had few friends but was kind and thoughtful. He always fell for the Mormon girls because they were the kindest to him. He preferred conversation to texting and couldn’t understand the abbreviated texts. He told me that he could hear people talk about him and that he has supersonic hearing. He said other kids talked about how he walked and he was self conscience about walking like he was gay.
He was either never invited to parties or he didn’t want to go but I know he was bullied at school.

One day I got a call from the school principal and his junior year. The principal told me that a young girl had come into his office concerned about Will and how many people picked on him during the day. The girl reported that there were like 15 people who all day long picked on Will didn’t and didn’t say why. The little girl was concerned that Will would commit suicide. She said that if that happened to her she would be afraid and so the principal called me. Will was asked to leave the room one day while his teachers made an announcement and he never knew what they said. That was enough for me and to think about a different option for school so we went and visited a school in Ohio that I thought would be good if he did like it but my husband did. My has been was afraid he would leave and get caught up with the locals and I guess he was just nervous about him leaving at that time and maybe sense something was going on.

So he was homeschooled her senior year and seem to enjoy it until about January and then he missed his friends and he had been he had been hospitalized during that year also so we were glad that he was able to continue studies here and we were able to watch him better.


#3

I’m glad you were able to homeschool him when you needed to.

I don’t think my son was bullied. He was quiet, but everyone just thought he was a druggy - and he let them think that.

We were very friendly with his art teacher, and she had him for 3 years in a row. He was very talented & she just let him do his own thing most of the time. She told me that other kids would ask him a question sometimes, and most of the time, he wouldn’t answer, I don’t know if he was too nervous or if he was so self-involved that he didn’t hear them.

He had a few girls that were interested in him, and he went out with one a couple times - she asked him out, so it was easier for him.

I dropped him off & picked him up from school, and he had one close friend there, and one at another school.

Plus, I think if someone bullied my son, he’d have beat the crap out of them at some point. He’s never been one to start a fight, but since elementary school, he wouldn’t back down. Thankfully, there weren’t many incidents, but the ones there were, he never started it, only finished it.

He’s not a big guy - at the time, probably 5’6" or so & about 135/140 lbs, but he’s always been very solid & strong. Early on, the gym teachers would try to get him to do gymnastics because he was one of the only kids who could climb that crazy rope thing all the way to the ceiling - he wouldn’t have anything to do with organized sports though.

In a way, I wish I could have a peak inside his head, but part of me would be very afraid to look.


#4

Yes 135 and solid and the only reason he didn’t get the Presidential fitness was he couldn’t run long distance. He would climb anything and everything since he was very small.


#5

Not sure how to answer this. I know my daughter hears voices, hallucinates and is very paranoid but she’s never told her doctor about her voices and delusions. Up to a certain point my daughter can hide her symptoms.


#6

Since he lost insight, he’s been very open. He talks about it like it’s 100% true, so why not share?
Especially since the meds he’s on has taken care of most of the paranoia.

The reason I’m thinking about it now is that I’m trying to set my expectations for what kind of recovery I can expect, and how long it should take.

He had been borderline stable for years, then got much, much worse this past year. But, maybe he was worse all along and just keeping it to himself. Or, maybe I just didn’t want to see it and my eyes have been opened?

I know I’m asking questions no one can answer.


#7

How much does anyone hide? So much.


#8

I work in a school for kids with emotional challenges and have several students with sz. We rarely see their symptoms until there is a break. One of our students had his first episode recently and while he had some strange thought patterns prior to the psychotic break, none of us suspected sz until his symptoms were much more obvious. Same with my own son who was prodromal for 5-6 years when he became more self conscious, quiet, anxious. At the time I thought it was a phase but it didn’t really go away until his psychosis at age 21. Currently he is 22 and very stable. I am finally seeing his true personality😀 I think some are able to hide their symptoms for quite some time.


#9

The more I think about it, the more I think that’s what my son’s done and I thought things were better than they were.

Especially since he’s the “I’ll handle it on my own” and “I can deal with it” kind of person.

I’m wrapping my head around the fact that the meds he’s taking aren’t going to fix everything as fast as I would like them to, and trying to be thankful for what they have done instead of impatient for too much too soon.

If it took him a long time to get where he is now, then it’s common sense it will take him awhile to get better.

I don’t want to expect too much - but I don’t want to accept too little either.


#10

TAG which medication is he on now. Thank you for sharing hope.,


#11

@slw You wrote: “Currently he is 22 and very stable. I am finally seeing his true personality​:grinning: I think some are able to hide their symptoms for quite some time.”

I know exactly what you mean. I’ve also been thinking about that the last few months. Maybe I was also in denial and told myself she is not that sick and one day will be fine just like my two other children.


#12

He’s on Invega 6 mg daily. We were very lucky as he responded quite well to the first medication attempted which was Risperdal. We switched to Invega about 6 months ago and the switch was seemless.


#13

They tried Riperadal in the hospital and it didn’t help my son. Darn it! I was hoping the shot would be in his future.


#14

I think I read that Invega either metabolizes to Risperadol, or the reverse, so it would make sense that Risperdol to Invega would be easy.

It was in a warning about taking Risperadol & Invega at the same time.


#15

Yes that’s what the Psychiatrist said. I am thrilled that it’s worked well for him. He is back in college this semester and is working part time. :grinning:


#16

Excuse me if you’ve already said, but how long has he been on it?
And, how long before most of his symptoms were gone for the most part?

My son is close to the 2-month mark, He had a few weeks where he didn’t say anything about the delusions and was talking about things he could do in the future. Now, he talks about his delusions daily and has started to laugh for no reason that I can see. I’m sure there’s something very entertaining in his mind.

They gave him some oral Invega when he came home from the hospital, but he wouldn’t take it. I managed to get some in him when this first started happening and the symptoms went away then, but now it doesn’t seem to be doing the trick. I’m just letting him be for now in the hopes the doctor will get a clear picture next Tuesday.

He’s much, much, much better than when he went into the hospital. He’s pleasant to be around, we have conversations that make sense, he seems happy enough - I just don’t want it to slowly go back to how it was because he ends up being one of the few people who doesn’t have a bad response to the med, but doesn’t get a lot of benefits either.

I was so hopeful about this one. Now, I’m trying to be patient, but I can’t help but worry - especially when they told me last week they may not want to increase the dosage before they give it 6 months.

He was also going out in public a little bit before. Now he doesn’t really want to at all. He hadn’t been out in a week or more, so I coaxed him out this evening to go to the brand-new 7-11 for a Slurpee then over to Captain D’s for take-out. He told me he changed his mind & didn’t want the Slurpee until I said it was OK, I’d go in & get it, and that he didn’t have to do anything he didn’t want to do.


#17

I’m sorry, now I understand your concern. Keep trying and I hope you see a positive change soon.


#18

It has been almost one year now. I will say though that my son’s symptoms were not very acute. He had just started verbalizing some paranoia and was very obviously anxious when he was hospitalized. I saw him make a few weird faces and laugh to himself but never heard him talking to himself out loud. He is still fearful and doesnt like to sleep in his own room. He is sharing a room with his brother ir he stays at his cousins house. He seems to be free of the paranoia and hallucinations.


#19

Now, I think the decreased sleeping has started.

Last 2 nights, he was up when I went to bed, up when I got up to go to work. He says he’s sleeping some, but it can’t be a lot. Maybe it’ll even out over the weekend.

At least we have an appt for the pdoc on Tuesday. If things go like they normally do, he won’t sleep until then, but on Tuesday morning, he’ll be dead to the world & grumpy about me waking him up.