Are you identified with your illness?

My therapist told me that i think about schizophrenia too much and i consider myself “David who has schizophrenia”. he wants me to think of myself as “David who happens to have schizophrenia”. He also says i have very negative thought cycles. Does anyone relate?


I’m completely identified with schizophrenia in the same way as you.

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You know, many times I identify with my illness too much, but this will happen when my symptoms color my thinking process - I cannot help it.

I used to be completely consumed by my illness, but its a little easier for me now.

It is easy for therapists and doctors to criticize us in this manner - they do not know what its like to be living with a chronic severe mental illness


Yes… It’s taken me a while to call myself a person with Sz instead of a schizophrenic.

Person first

with Sz… later on the list…


I used to identify very little with my schizophrenia, and thinking more spiritually about my problems. Eventually due to unfortunate circumstances I started to identify and believe in the biological ilness model and way of thinking. However recent scientists such as the british psychologists has been voicing a different perspective. That made me somehow identify less with my diagnosis. I guess I view it more as a part of me that creates problems sometimes, even if I know its not entirely true. So no I dont identify with my diagnosis, but I know thats how other people see me.

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I have that watch :stuck_out_tongue:

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That’s funny ! Can’t beat a timex!

I think it’s harder if you get diagnosed with sz early on… It kind of becomes your tribe, the sufferers of sz. Which has advantages as well as disadvantages. Certainly seeing it as an illness, a disease is a very negative thought, I far prefer “condition” for any mental health issue.

At a certain point you have to reclaim your basic humanity and realise that although you are a member of the schizophrenic tribe, there are many other tribes and groupings you can belong to as well.


First I am a badass who kicks ass on the side for shits and giggles.

Then I am a student who is on top of all that ■■■■.

Then I am madness.

I went with my homies to see Jurassic World
Like the first five minutes they introduce this pretty redhead girl
I was like wait a minute that looks like my aunt
Then I was like this gonna make for an awesome rap rant
So here I am spitting another schizophrenic addict rhyme
I would get tired of this but I just step back and walk around for a short amount of time
I come up with another impulse to commit a crime
I can rhyme all the time and I can cut that ■■■■ off and stop on a dime
To be honest I please some schizophrenics when I get down to business
I like to display my madness like a peacock and Im into fitness
I look like a ■■■■■■■ bodygaurd and dress like one too
I wear black shoes black jeans black jeans and have a military hairdo
Now it’s time to take a break because I feel like I need to poo

Only time I think in terms of a specific diagnosis is when I have to fill in forms. Rest of the time I am not to keen to think of script diagnosis

I identify quite a lot with it. As @Kerome, I also like to think of it in terms of a condition. This is precisely because I identify very much with it. In my experience, it is not the type of disease that you have and that you can think of in terms of ‘here me, there the disease’. Especially during psychosis, it seems to change the whole human being you are. That being said, I don’t feel a lot of stigma in my environment. I realize that for those who do, it might work better to tuck it away as an illness they happen to have.

Yeah thats the thing he’s a great therapist but he acts like he knows what schizophrenia is more than i do. YOU HAVE TO HAVE IT!!!

If someone who’s worked with schizophrenic patients for sixty years and has read everything ever written on the subject, suddenly becomes schizophrenic, that person would say “wow, this is nothing like i thought it would be”


Like mad. My sick mind labels me one thing and another according to whatever mistakes I make because of the 1) moral perfectionism I was trained to believe in as a child, and 2) all the harsh criticism (often with physical abuse) I received from my excessively perfectionistic mother.

I had to be re-trained to observe to notice to recognize to acknowledge to accept to own to appreciate to understand when, how and why my mind (which is not “me”) does this, to reject the labels out of hand, and to reorient to see myself as a human being and not someone else’s label.


The illness doesn’t define me, just a part of who I am. How others see me is their problem not mine.

Read Anton Chekov “Ward No. 6”

all his works are online, you can access them easily.

yes!! i used to be stuck there. the “i am my illness. who cares? i might as well be dead.” sometime in the past two years, i stopped thinking i was doing pretty good for a schizophrenic and started thinking that i was doing lousy for a normal person. what changed? a lot of it was therapy. some of it was progress in life.

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“In your natural state, you do not label yourself, which is
freedom. It is when we begin to apply labels that we lose
ourselves. In those rare flashes of spontaneity, which children
sometimes have, we do not know that we are either weak or strong,
old or young, unwanted or popular. Naturalness does not split it-
self into opposing labels; the natural man is one with himself and
with everything else. We do not lose ourselves until we believe
society’s false claim that labels are realities. To save yourself,
stop believing.”

Vernon Howard - Esoteric Mind Power, p. 152


Yeah, my therapist does a good job of pushing me to do as much as I’m capable of. no excuses for things that aren’t affected by sz.

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My therapist has said the same sort of thing about my depression. She tells me to think of my depressed self as “the person I was”, and to live as if I don’t have depression.

Which, to me, sounds like “cut out your tongue and then live your life as if you still have one (because your behavior is annoying to all of us and we’d rather you just shut up and pretend to be happy, you know, the rest of us have problems too, think about someone else for a change).”

I’m sure there’s wisdom in the suggestion, but I can’t see it yet, and I’m not ready for it yet. I’m still mourning the life I thought I would have.


Repressing negative emotions and just carrying on with it, is bad advice in my book. It can eventually lead to binge drinking or similar non contructive things, like it did for me. You might try meds like anti depressants to see if they help, but feeling depressed is where your at, and your allowed to mourn I believe.

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