My boyfriend linked me to this website Quora.com, it’s a website that helps guide you with questions on similar cases like schizophrenia and more (tech, everyday life, random questions, pretty much like an ask yahoo questions).
This article really gave me another perspective on life, go ahead read it:
What does it feel like to be schizophrenic?
Of course, I can only talk about my personal experiences. Other schizophrenics I’ve talked to have very, very different stories.
I’m luckier than many. Most days I live, work, and function just as well as you. I’m very lucky because my symptoms are mild compared to many, and are well controlled by medication. If you met me on the street and we chatted for a bit, you probably wouldn’t think there was anything particularly odd about me.
If you worked with me or saw me every day, you’d probably think I was just a little eccentric — but you may not think I was mentally ill. You’d notice that sometimes I have an odd way of saying things. And sometimes I get quiet. And sometimes I have bad days when I’m a bit upset and it’s better to leave me alone.
I told my boss and a few close coworkers that I am bipolar — because it gives me a bit of leeway with some of my slightly off behavior and needing to call out sick, on occasion — without bringing up the S-Word. I never, ever tell people that I am schizophrenic, because they assume this means (1) that I have multiple personalities or (2) that some day I will snap and try to attack them with a broken bottle. Both of which are completely ridiculous.
I think and process information very differently than you do.
Sometimes, this is actually a benefit. In my office, I am highly valued for my creative approaches to problems and situations, and for my ability to detect patterns across large sets of data.
My brain is used to holding and dealing with much more information than the average brain, and it is constantly at work seeking out and forming connections that the average person would never consider. I can often easily spot new approaches, interpretations and analysis that others miss. Often, though, this different-processing backfires:
Some days, it feels like the universe is just jerking you around and messing with you.
It feels like someone changed the rules of reality, but you are the only one who noticed.
Some days you have important information about people/events/rules that other people aren’t aware of. Sometimes it is extremely vital that you sit in a certain spot on the train — or that you have to avoid milk because its part of a an attempt to control our minds. These are rules that you know for a fact are true, yet other people don’t seem to know about it, and just don’t understand if you try to explain.
Some days you see/hear/believe things that no one else does.
Some days every single thought in your head is broadcast to the people around you – so you have to be extra careful about what you think about, because you can’t let the people sitting nearby in the coffee shop find out your secrets.
Some days, you pick up extra information about people and situations – you might be able to hear voices that explain what the lady behind you in line at the grocery store is really thinking about you.
For me, most days this mis/additional perception just buzzes quietly in the back of my brain as I go through my day. Intense episodes happen to me only infrequently.
But I have to constantly live with the fact/fear that the universe that I see and hear and experience may or may not be the same as the universe that you and I are actually interacting in.
It sucks, because you have to learn to mistrust your own judgment and perceptions. I started developing symptoms when I was 19. Since then, I’ve had to teach myself to always be the last person to react to things. Unique situations have to be run through a real/not-real test. Example: A while ago I was in a large meeting at work and a bunch of lightning bugs/fireflies began to fly around the room. Check 1: Is this possible? — Answer: implausible, but not impossible, right? Check 2: Is anyone else in the room reacting/commenting on the situation? Answer: No? Then let’s assume it’s not real until you have evidence to the contrary.
I’ve also had to implement a three-day waiting period when I experience strong, unexpected emotions. Example: One day, I was suddenly and utterly convinced that my boss absolutely hated me and was about to fire me. I felt absolutely horrible – and every time he looked at me, I was convinced that he was completely disgusted with me. Check: Find external evidence about why I had cause to think this. Answer: I checked through my email and meeting notes, and could not find any events that would have caused this. And no coworker volunteered any independent verification that there were problems. Response: I had to force myself to put these beliefs in the back-burner and re-examine this emotion in three days time. By the end of the waiting period, I was able to recognize that there was no problem and everything was fine.
I’m also very lucky to live with a remarkable (highly patient) partner who can tell me when I’ve gone out of bounds in my social behavior or personal appearance.
Trying to reconcile two conflicting worlds is draining and exhausting.
Thankfully, I have above average intelligence and am more self-aware than the average person. This helps me recognize when hallucinations/delusions aren’t real, and analyze what the correct reaction should be in most situations. But knowing this doesn’t make them go away.
Paying attention in an important meeting is very difficult when you are trying to ignore a cloud of fireflies (and subtly check to see if anyone else has seen them). Having to constantly second guess yourself is mentally exhausting as well.
Try turning on five television sets, full volume, to five different channels, and tell me how easy it is to follow the thread of just one show. Imagine that in this one show (“Reality”) there is a serious dramatic situation playing out. Maybe one of the other TVs is playing a hilarious sitcom. Now try paying attention just to the drama — while keeping in mind that you absolutely must not laugh or react to any of the jokes in the sitcom. As you might imagine, on off days, I have trouble paying attention and I get easily distracted.
On my worst days, I have trouble understanding people when they talk to me, and I have trouble responding. I hear the words that people say — but they just don’t make any sense, and I can’t get my brain to interpret them. If I’m feeling particularly overloaded, I just shut down and will barely talk to or respond to others.
Side Note: Taking anti-psychotic medication sucks.
If your condition is controlled by medication, and you stop taking meds for more than a couple of days, it can lead to very bad consequences. Anti-psychotics are expensive, and can slow me down: I can’t think through complex problems as quickly as I once could. I also sleep several hours more each day. And I gained 50 pounds from the meds – despite eating very well and working out more.
– Author Unknown
If that doesn’t give you another perspective on life, I don’t know what will. You see most of us live normal lives, yeah we have problems here and there but do they really compare to a person who has to live their lives always in fear and always living on an edge because they cannot help themselves? Sometimes we just like to complain that we are tired and we don’t like our jobs, be grateful for what you have and if you don’t like it, you know you can change it right? A person with this disease cannot change themselves, they can’t just stop and decide to not think like they do, but most of us can.
Stop for a moment in life, smell the so called flowers and decide to change your life because you can, but don’t complain about it and do nothing about it. Live, Love, Laugh….that’s what I always say….