Episode 38 – Diagnosing Schizophrenia (Part 2)

Schizophrenia is classified as a thought disorder. It is heavily characterized by irregular thoughts, delusions, hallucinations, and disorganized thinking, among other things. I interpret this as many people with schizophrenia struggle to follow logical trains of thought, make strange connections between thoughts and concepts, and can have a hard time thinking of appropriate words, leading to what is referred to as “word salad”. This is sometimes shown in a long ramble that doesn’t usually make sense, or constantly struggling to find the correct word.

My sibling was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2010. I was in either 7th or 8th grade at the time, and I had not said a word about my symptoms to my mom or anyone else. As I said in my last post, I was attached to the abusive voices and didn’t really want them to leave like everyone else did, so I kept it to myself. When my sibling was diagnosed, it must have been hard on my mom, because I remember the first time I briefly mentioned hearing a voice to her later on, in 9th or 10th grade, she nearly slammed on the car’s brakes. She looked terrified. I’ll always remember how she asked me a million questions there in the car and said we needed to go to a doctor. I remember exactly which street we were driving on. I was a little overwhelmed now, and scared, because I had previously gotten mental health treatment from my family doctor for my previously diagnosed depression, not a psychiatrist, some new stranger that I definitely did not trust. I didn’t trust people back then.

Starting in 7th grade, I started writing down the conversations I was having with the voices, both theirs and mine. Some auditory hallucinations are indeed inside the head for schizophrenics, rather than all being external. Mine were in my head, like severe intrusive thoughts that were unrelated to me, my thoughts, my feelings. They expressed different opinions on things than I had, including people and activities. Only one voice stood out, the original one. Later on, I ended up burning the conversations I recorded one by one. Same with the journals I kept during the darkest years. Whenever I looked back on them, I was horrified and couldn’t stop crying at what I read had been going through my head.

With my somewhat mild but apparent symptoms, my mom took me to a psychiatrist who basically instantly, without listening to my symptoms, said I didn’t have schizophrenia. I think we saw her once or twice more, but she’d made up her mind, and the town I lived in at the time didn’t have any other options really. I can’t remember if this was before or after my decompression surgery for Chiari malformation, which was in 2013 at the end of my 9th grade year in May. After that, the next four months were some of the best of my life. I had the voices, the paranoia, the difficulty with emotions, some strange connections in thoughts and concepts, but the physical pain I’d grown up with was gone, which made a huge difference. But things went sharply downhill in September.

I was still having full conversations with the original voice in my head. But at one point, it went quiet, and I was hit by a bunch of other voices, all yelling at me and hurting my brain. The onslaught would lessen when the original voice came back, but the voice started being gone more and more often, leaving me to the other cruel voices.

I had a boyfriend at this time. He and I were really close, and I truly loved him, but the original voice didn’t. It hated him, and that’s why it would disappear for periods of time I think. The voices all started attacking my boyfriend, poisoning me against him. They dissolved my trust in him and everyone else, specifically telling me that everything was lies. To this day, that thought haunts me – that everything could be a lie. They convinced me about everyone, so I pushed everyone away, including my boyfriend.

To be continued…

Published by Rawry

I'm just a writer and gamer living in the middle of nowhere..

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