Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

My Friend Has Become Delusional (Schizophrenic)

Hi, I’m new to this forum and I hope this post is in the correct category, but here goes -

tl;dr – my friend has become delusional (schizophrenic?) after rejection, what do we do?

BACKSTORY (cut very short, some details faked):

My friend Amy (f/24) has been dating friend Ben (m/23) for a couple of years. Ben’s best friend Chris (m/24) developed feelings for Amy. Amy rejected him softly, but fast forward 1 year, Amy has lingering feelings for Chris. Amy is also depressed because she thinks she tore Ben and Chris apart. Ben and Amy split, but Chris is already in a different relationship. Amy knows she can’t be with Chris anymore but still wants to keep in contact. Chris rejects Amy in a harsh way, and Amy is crushed because she had trusted Chris. She breaks down and has suicidal thoughts, but her friends support her and she seemed to be getting over it.

SYMPTOMS A couple of days later, however, she starts saying weird stuff (she is not taking drugs):

  • “I am thankful to everyone, my parents, all the singer songwriters and artists”

  • “I haven’t slept for 2 days straight, music is a drug”

  • “Some higher power is at work making [Chris and I] complement each other”

  • “I’ve won, I love the world, all I had to do was accept that I’m insane, I’m so high right now and I’m so happy“

  • “Chris triggered a PTSD in me. I spiritually and mentally died. Old me is not here anymore.”

Other things:

  • According to her there are 12 souls (her close friends) connected through music, and she needs to save them

  • She thinks she’s unlocked the universe and she has reached enlightenment - if we disagree it’s just that we haven’t reached that point

  • Chris is her twin?soulmate? And they belong together, they are the same beings, twin flames

  • Chris is the ocean and she is the water

  • She doesn’t eat at all and is losing weight (49kg / 168cm as of early Feb), doesn’t exercise

  • This has been going on for a month

Basically she is weird… like very weird. She seems to have gone through some transformation after deep introspection (she is a serious, serious thinker) and now has a spiritual/delusional take on the world. As much as I’d want to believe this is her way of getting over her shock, it makes me very worried when she says things like “me and Chris are going to be one forever / we have telepathy ”, and that Chris has already broken up with her girlfriend (all of which I have confirmed with Chris that is not true). She has also been trying to drag her best friend into her beliefs and I find that disturbing. She doesn’t respond when we ask more about her beliefs / her situation with Chris, so we don’t know how to approach this (we are all out of country and there is nobody around her who we can trust).

She currently lives with her parents. She doesn’t have a job. All she does these days is make playlists on Spotify.

Regarding her PTSD – she has a history of being abandoned by mean friends during high school, and we think that’s what she is referring to.

Given all of that I have a couple of questions:

  1. Is this, in any way, a transition that can result in something healthy? I know this sounds off but have there been accounts of this kind of behavior leading to a better recovery?
  2. Is this considered schizophrenic / psychotically delusional? I’ve read that it could get better in a month or can develop into something even worse (so not really an answer), but is there any medication that can help?
  3. What is the best course of action here? We may be able to meet her in person in a month’s time, but until then, should we be aiming to do something, or leave her alone without confronting it?
  4. We want her to see a psychiatrist but we don’t know if she’ll accept it, what are some other non-offensive remedies that she might allow?

And please don’t judge her dating choices, it’s unrelated to the subject…

[EDIT] I forgot to mention that Amy has always been a grounded person who bases most of her beliefs and thoughts on scientifically backed claims, and she’s never based her thoughts on spiritual things. We’ve known her for 10+ years and this kind of thing has never happened.

Thank you.

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She should see a therapist

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Even a grounded science based person can have a psychotic break. Anyone can. I would venture to say that there was a lot more to the onset of it than the relationship triangle that you mentioned. It could have been the straw the broke the camels back so to speak. It is seldom just one thing. I agree totally with @TheSunshineMaras >Amy needs to seek professional help and sooner rather than later.

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She should talk to a therapist.

Not that I know anything about her situation, nor am I qualified to make any actionable statements.
But, this sounds delusional.

Remember that she is her own person and can make her own choices. If she chooses not to seek treatment, that’s her choice.

I mentioned a book I just finished on another thread, called “Rethinking Madness”. I have to say that a lot of aspects of her behavior/thinking mesh well with the author’s theories. It’s too long to go into here, but reading it might help you understand better what she is going through.

I agree with others that a therapist would help, but in answer to your question, it is possible that she will get better and come through this a stronger person. Nothing is guaranteed, of course, but it does happen. It happened for the six people intereviewed for the book, and for the author himself.

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Lack of insight to see how their state of mind might be unhealthy included,
You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink.
Or, more specifically,
You can take a delusional person to a therapist, but you can’t make them speak about their issues in a constructive way and accept that some of their views and ideas aren’t healthy.

I’m certainly not trying to discourage you from trying.
Just manage your expectations. Someone who doesn’t think they have a problem will not try to change their lifestyle.

A lot of people here have recommended the book I Am Not Sick I Don’t Need Help. I have just started reading it and it has a lot to say about the lack of insight in the mentally ill.

I agree with soworried!

I’ve mentioned the book “Rethinking Madness” a few times. I just googled it and found that the author has a site where apparently you can download a PDF of the book for free (I haven’t tried it, since I already have on Kindle).

The book was very interesting to me, but there was lots of psychological theory that was kind of heavy going at times. For a quicker look, he has links to blog posts which sum up a bit of what’s in the book.

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