My observable symptoms: responding to internal stimuli, inappropriate laughter, mood swings are the tip of the iceberg. You can’t see the hallucinations, delusions, loneliness and the pain.
When I had my first psychotic break, no one around me noticed. I am married and was working. People asked me if I was sad. I was isolating, and they can’t know what is going on inside your mind. (Although, at times i have believed people could know my thoughts).
Now, it is hard to tell if I am isolating or just following stay home orders.
I have been stable for years. Sometimes, I worry i will have another break, but hopefully we (my husband and I) will be able to recognize it and act quickly.
I have a form of schizophrenia and people have been suggesting my fears are delusions, but some things are obviously true.
I am in the USA. Our president is playing games with state governors for medical equipment and supplies. If they don’t compliment, praise him in the media so he can win votes he won’t order supplies, He buys them up, or tells vendors not to sell to them. I am talking ppe and ventilators, test kits. Even if we have more tests available someone has to obtain sample and needs ppe. He has kept testing low to keep numbers of reported cases low and people don’t take the mitigation policies seriously.
He suggested that our elders and high risk people are expendable. Worth the “sacrifice” for Wall Street. Hospitals are deciding who should get first choice of ventilators, who not to resuscitate, They will choose to give up on the disabled. I don’t know where I fall in those discussions. I have loved ones that would die. All we can do is try to hide from the virus.
Our president only thinks of money and power, has no humanity, I feel helpless and the ones in power are moving really slowly. We let him become above the law.
His followers don’t care he is killing them and us. They are blinded. You would think when it is affecting you, personally, you would wake up, but no. There is so much propaganda, the media perpetuates it. He lies on tv and they still play it.
I feel like I am in a simulation (that is my mental illness) and just want it to end. I worry about myself and those around me. This virus is so infectious. I am in CA. Our governor says they predict over 50% of us over the year. I think it is inevitable I will catch it, just don’t know when. He also said maybe 12 more weeks of stay home order. People complain of boredom. If that is the main complaint that is ideal in a pandemic.
I just go to work and home. I work in a residential mental health facility. My views are my own not my employer, we need to put disclaimers. We take our temp before shift and resident vitals daily. So far the residents are restless but healthy. It is an 80 bed facility. It would be a disaster if we get an outbreak. No visitors, no packages, stay on site.
I am scared. I try to distract myself. I watch tv shows and go on social media. I do not watch our president talk, it just makes me upset. Our governor is calming. It is bad news but I feel like he is a good leader. My mom and mother in law are high risk and stay inside. Mother in law is alone. she gets lonely. We call everyday but I wish we could do more. She has not figured out video meetings yet. I wish I could just go there and show her, but if I could we would not need it. My mom gets frustrated with technology,
My husband is still working, too. He works in communications for the school district. All teaching is online now, so that is important. He goes to grocery store and anything we need. I really don’t want him to get sick. There is a shortage of masks so they told us not to wear them. I think that recommendation will change soon, I see people say how to make them but it is too complicated for me.
My children are 18 and 21. My daughter is home from college and everything is online. My son is a senior in high school. It is hard from him being away from his friends. He is no longer working, youth sports, because it is cancelled. He interacts with his friends online or goes out for a drive alone.
I had a cold that turned into a sinus infection and saw a doc via telemedicine, I recommend highly. there are so many things that are now accommodated for and I hope that continues after this is all over.
I like Biden for President. He has compassion. I don’t care to debate. This is all my opinion,
Men keep sliding into my DMs. I am not used to this. I am happily married,. I can follow on social media without messaging. It makes me uncomfortable. You can message me anything important, like how to protect myself and others, but I won’t respond generally to chit chat.
I have been stable without any major psychotic symptoms for 15 years. I have not been hospitalized since 2005. This week my head is spinning.
I don’t know whether the pandemic is a delusion, everyone tells me it is real, if people are playing tricks on me. I only have what I get on social media, I am staying home except for essentials. Part of me thinks this whole thing was planned but got bungled
I talk to my family and people online. They tell me it was a mutation of a virus. Natural. That I should keep staying home and washing hands. I am scared. Had a cold that turned into a sinus infection that is mostly cleared up. My dr okayed for me to go back to work mon. Now, that i am physically ready I am not sure about mentally.
I am terrified I will get sick and inadvertently cause an outbreak at work or home. I am not sick now. Called my psychiatrist and left a message, hopefully I can talk with him mon. I had just scaled back on therapy because things were going well. I contacted and will make phone appointment
People tell me to stay away from social media, but how would I have known about this. I want to be informed. I feel dizzy. Maybe I am hyperventilating I am anxious.
I walked the dog with my husband keeping distance from others. I ordered a #cameo from a great comedian @DarrenCarter
My plan is to go into work mon until I talk to psychiatrist to get his thoughts. So, this weekend is staying close to home, which I do anyways,
My father had an undiagnosed mental illness, probably bipolar, but I did not know that at the time. He was just a moody, raging, jerk. People knew but no one wants to interfere. I remember we had an uncle who was physically abusive to his kids, maybe his wife, I don’t know. Everyone knew about it but nothing was done. We are all grown with families of our own now and the perps have died.
My mother is passive and anxious. She did not want to disturb anything. She would tell us our father was just joking and he is wonderful when he would say or do hurtful things.
My dad has passed and can’t hurt me anymore. My mom and I have a strained relationship. I don’t want to put any hope into it growing into more. But, we can be amicable and she does not upset me so much.
And, I had an older brother who had a psychotic disorder, maybe schizoaffective like me, but my dad did not believe in psychiatry so the only help he got was when he got picked up by the police for observation. He would stop any meds as soon as he got home. Nothing changed. He died young at 26. I don’t know if it was an accident or suicide. He fell at a waterfall. But, I felt I had lost my brother years before, when he first got sick.
Everyone else in my family is over it all. I don’t know if I should let it go or if I could heal.
I could answer yes to almost everything and a few maybe’s. He suggests working with a therapist.
I have a new therapist. I don’t know what to work on. Day to day, things are okay. I kind of went through my family history with her last time.
Or should I be done with therapy? I am pretty stable and see a psychiatrist. Things in my day to day life are fine. My past is a mess, but maybe I should just leave it there. My father discouraged me from going to therapy. “You talk about the past and it just makes people sad.” I thought he was being ignorant. Of course, it is more than that. But, did he have a point?
I plan to ask my therapist next time I see her if she thinks I even need it.
I was not sure what to choose for an “S” word, but this disorder affects my whole life. Also, most people have never heard of it.
Schizoaffective is basically a combination of a thought disorder, like schizophrenia and a mood disorder, like bipolar. There is controversy about the diagnosis. It can resemble bipolar with psychotic features except you have weeks of psychotic symptoms while not in a mood state (manic or depressed). Or, it can seem like schizophrenia with depression. There are 2 types, bipolar type and depressive type. I have the bipolar type and have had mania.
I had years of psychotic symptoms, it was either a long episode with periods of insight and lucidity, or a number of relapses. It all is rolled together in my mind. But, once I got on a good medication cocktail (I take several types), I have not had the severe symptoms. Now, I am more troubled by fatigue, anxiety and milder depressions.
Prognosis varies. I am married, have children, work part time. I had a psychotic break at 39. I know nothing about dating with a diagnosis or pregnancy and psych meds. Mental illnesses can be hard on marriages. We were married for 7 years before I was diagnosed. Fortunately, my husband is supportive and understanding.
I see a psychiatrist, a therapist, and go to a support group for mood disorders. Some good resources can be found through the National Alliance for Mental Illness NAMI.org and depression and bipolar support alliance dbsa.org.
i went to a conference today. There were 32 workshops..
the first i went to was on Borderline Personality Disorder. It was very informative and i learned a lot. The next was on support groups, that was good. There were a number of organizations represented.
the last one i went to was “ask the doctors” on schizophrenia. It was an open forum for people to comment, and ask questions. There were suggested questions on the screen.
one of the questions was, “what has worked for you?” I would have loved to hear the answers to that one.
one thing that worked for me, was talking to people with similar experiences, either on-line or in person. I went to dbsa support groups, nami connections and eventually started a group affiliated with the national organization, schizophrenia alliance. I don’t run the group anymore, but i am glad it is still going.
another thing, that is a little different, was when i was very troubled with auditory hallucinations, my psychiatrist found a way to communicate. He wrote words while he spoke, circling and crossing out important words.
no, one had asked what my experience was like when i had a psychotic break. They asked about symptoms, but not what were the voices saying or what the messages were. Not until i saw a therapist who seemed interested. It felt lke a relief to be able to tell my story.
i would love if anyone would share what has helped them
I was removed from the bone marrow registry when I updated my health information. They sent me an email saying they have volunteers and it was a safety issue. I didn’t think about it until someone mentioned they were turned down to donate blood because they have schizophrenia. It is not the medications we take that are the problem. They fear we are a danger.
I was not really looking forward to donating, but with waiting lists it seems like they would not want to turn people away.
Give the gift of #stigma
I can understand that I can’t purchase life insurance. My diagnosis is associated with committing suicide. I am not unreasonable. But, assuming I am dangerous without asking any questions besides my diagnosis is infuriating
Yes, I have a mental illness. A scary kind that starts with schiz…. But, I am not and never have been violent. I am more likely to be the victim of a crime than the perpetrator. I am enough of a suicide risk, by that label alone, that I can not purchase life insurance. I don’t want a gun.
There are laws in my state regulating that you may not possess a firearm for 5 years after an involuntary commitment. I am fine with background checks that do not invade my privacy.
I know any marginalized group gets singled out when a member commits a crime. Especially one like mass murder. I dread after violent news that they will say …and he had a mental illness.
This young man. He was a man. Was radicalized in the United States by a white supremacy organization and committed an act of terrorism. How many of these attacks do we need before the government examines these terrorist groups like they do others.
We have so many problems with the mental health system. Not enough beds, people being homeless or imprisoned instead of hospitalized. Questionable housing. Trouble getting treatment or knowing you need treatment. I want so much for there to be proper funding.
But, fear and buying into a false sense of safety that if you just could keep the diagnosed mentally ill from purchasing guns all would be fine, is not an answer. It may be part of the solution, but we need more action.
The suggestion from our school district is “If you see something, say something”. That does not make me feel very secure, either. There were signs in this case, in many cases, and people did say something, and still it happened.
I am not any kind of expert and will not suggest that I have an answer. I will be listening to survivors, pushing for more surveillance of homegrown terrorist groups and not demand a right to bear arms.