a reply to: Soapusmaximus
#1 - Calm the hell down!
Have you and you family ever tried to consider looking at this diagnosis as a gift?
I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 3 years old. It wouldn't actually be until i was 40 that I would get hints that I was schizophrenic, and at
42, I had absolutely no doubt of it when I saw fictional worlds unfold in front of my eyes that led to several suicide attempts.
Now here's the thing about a schizophrenic's mind: We flat out do not see the world as you do.
And - I can only say this now after getting control of my own mind - this is NOT a bad thing.
Sure, I had bouts of depression throughout my life. I have been a programmer since I was 11, which is a profession I chose because it focused the
voices in my head and helped guide me and made me feel good about me.
But it's extraordinarily difficult to describe from 'within' the experience of schizophrenia what we do not hear. I NEVER, not once heard anyone say I
was suffering from schizophrenia. Do you know how the mind has a tendency to 'fill the gaps in' for things that don't make sense? The mind also has a
tendency to HIDE the things that don't make sense as well.
Well that's what a schizophrenic's mind does and a person with multiple personality disorder does - our minds literally hide these accusations from us
But even though we may not HEAR or SEE the diagnosis of schizophrenia or multiple personality disorder, what we DO is feel the effect of the family
pressures resulting from our lack of contact with their and your worlds.
So for me - when everyone became so overwhelmingly insistent that there was something wrong with me, my mind couldn't hide it from me consciously any
longer. Those external pressures were effecting my health. So consciously, I had to figure out what was causing the problems that my own mind was
hiding from me.
Now to restate that - The FIRST part of healing for a schizophrenic is to regard the mind as a separate and distinct entity. This disassociation is
critical - believe it or not - the mental health of someone who's schizophrenic.
Why is this? A large part of the problem of someone with schizophrenia is separating our emotions out from others around us. Is the simple process of
finding and accepting our own labels of what's real and what's not. This becomes overwhelming, so much so in fact, that it introduces a blurring
effect between the lines of what is fact and fiction.
To the schizophrenic. This 'blur' is NOT imaginary. I frequently became confused what I was feeling with my ex wives, I have three of them, and the
largest part of the problem was I could actually feel their emotional state which I kept dismissing as imaginary. I at one time had an affair with a
woman I now am convinced didn't exist.
So here's my personal conclusion: Schizophrenia is a fundamental change in the way I think. And healing has to actually come through an abundance of
self acceptance. By me refusing to accept the labels of 'having a problem' and 'being crazy', that actually started me down a path of self
understanding that has made me realize - I'm just different. And now I like who I am. Is it hard accepting that some of my lovers may have been
imaginary? Not really. it makes life that much more magical, mysterious, and goofy which makes me feel good about being here.
The problem with anti-depressants and anti psychotics is this: They deal with the family's emotions, which makes it HORRIBLY confusing to the
schizophrenic what they are experiencing that's real versus what's a product of the drug. this intensifies the degraded feelings of self worth
because 'you just don't fit in', are not 'normal'. and even if you're not consciously hearing people's diagnosis of you being a schizophrenic - you
'feel' they all think you're crazy which depresses the hell out of you worse.
I felt out of control so much towards the 'transition' to self acceptance. But it wasn't until I got off pharmaceuticals and separated myself from my
family and friends until I could find a way to reinvent me and be ok 'not being like them'. Which also helped me differentiate my emotions from
The thing to keep in mind about schizophrenia and multiple personality disorder is this:
FROM THE OUTSIDE you may see the problems as plain as day.
But from within the mind of someone who's experiencing this, you flat out may not even be aware of any irregularities, so much so - that your mind may
actively 'hide' things from you to lead you to believe you're not normal.
My advice to you is this: GET that person off drugs, altogether. NO pharmaceuticals. No over the counters. No illicits. No NADA. This reinforces the
minds dependence on itself to solve the problems, which is critical to the health and stability of this person with this condition.
Second, and of utmost importance - HELP the person find a skill which lets them understand the separation of mind and how you can effectively
reprogram your own thinking. Programming was a natural fit for me, but it took a great deal of time for it to work. I also took life coaching which is
holistically based, as well as Neuro Linguistic Programming, all contributed to my own self repair of my damaged psyche.
Yes, I still hear voices - but it's manageable now and I feel like we're in a partnership and I am FAR more creative than I have ever been, so I
consider this condition a gift. Furthermore, yes, I do see things on occasion, but it's often funny, odd, or puts a smile on my face - sometimes it's
highly abnormal behavior in others - for instance - I frequently see people walking naked in very public places even though no one else seems to be
reacting or even aware for instance - but now that i have an 'open conversation' with my own mind, I feel like we're working together in a weird
partnership that feels more like fun than it does a combative relationship.
For the health of this person, support them. While this may not appear as a gift to you, it can be to those experiencing it when they learn to embrace
their inner nonconformist.
A final thing; To the mind of those experiencing schizophrenia. Chances are, if they are like me at least, that their mind is also experiencing
multiple personality disorder and inventing people that may act and seem and for all intents and purposes are very very real to the person with this
Now how can anyone look at this as a gift?
It's really difficult to explain: but think about this. If you're the last person on Earth, you'd never know it.
And you have always got company, so you're never truly lonely.
For those 'on the outside' looking in. I frequently get into debates about 'its just not real'.
That's the thing about schizophrenia. I had to learn to develop new labels for what's real and what's not,AND accept that what i see others may not
which doesn't make it any less real, and be ok with people who were insistent that I have a problem and disorder that needs cured because their
reality and labels had become inconsistent with mine.
Who's crazy. The person who enjoys being different? Or the person calling you crazy insisting you believe what they do and you're crazy if you
Sounds religious to me.