Hi, This is my first time posting so any help will be greatly appreciated. We just found out that my sister has been DX with Paranoid Schizophrenia and I am trying to educate myself on it. I also have tons of questions and will post them as they come about. This is my question for now, my sister tells us that she hears voices that tell her to do things. She said that all of them are a deceased family member, and that she also talks to them everyday. My question is, is there a significance as to why it’s a deceased family member?
@Max78 I don’t know about the significance of the voices being a family member. I just hope they aren’t telling her to do bad things. Welcome to the forum. You will get a ton of support and information here. How old is your sister?
Unfortunately she says that they are. It’s really sad and heartbreaking. She is 38.
There is no real significance to any of the delusions or hallucinations. They are imaginary and change on a whim, based on the DX’d person’s circumstances, or the state of their mood.
They are probably very convincing, very confusing and possibly even disturbing.
As a family member, it is important to provide even-tempered reactions to the things that she chooses to tell you, without letting yourself become angry or frustrated. It is also important to provide a “reality check”. To assure them that these are common symptoms of Schizophrenia and that she should not focus on these hallucinations if she can avoid it.
She can identify that these are hallucinations because nobody else experiences them and they seem irrational, shocking or very out of the ordinary.
The things these hallucinations “tell” her to do are irrational and compulsive. Doing those things doesn’t help anything and interacting with hallucinations in any way only makes them more of a problem for her.
She may begin to believe that these hallucinations make her special, or that there is some sort of hidden message she is supposed to uncover. Assure her that this isn’t true and focusing on it will only become a source of confusing and frustration.
Most importantly, be patient and try to keep your tone calm. She is possibly dealing with a lot of inner chaos that you can’t detect. Try not to be another source of stress.
Try to provide her with casual, comfortable conversation about real world events that you have going on. Good stories about work, hobbies or family. Try to help her focus on what she has going on inbthe real world, too (as opposed to her philosophy or her imagination).
Help her find some peace in talking to you, and lots of trust that things she tells you won’t cause bad consequences.
Glad you’re doing reaearch.
While you’re at it, look up the different kinds of delusions someone with schizophrenia can experience. I wish I had known about them all sooner, because my brother experienced many of them in different phases.
One in particular that surprised me to learn my brother had believed was that he had lived past lives. Another was that he believed he might already be dead, and therefore somehow invincible.
There are a lot more and they all follow a set of identifiable patterns.
Strange stuff, but sort of common to schizophrenia delusions. It’s important not to express anger or exasperation if she talks to you about that kind of stuff.
Like I said, be an even-tempered reality check. Not a source of stress.