Schizophrenia.com

Do you consider your schizophrenia to be part of you?

This has probably been asked many times before. But I’m new and I’ve always wondered this about other schizophrenics. I’ve never asked anyone before because I can’t really be around other people except for my mom so I can’t join a real life support group. Do you think of your schizophrenia like a disease? Or do you consider it a horrible part of yourself?

I don’t know if I am explaining this correctly. I’m sorry if it is confusing. When I was in high school, my psychologist wanted to put me on antidepressants. I was unsure because I wondered if I would still be me anymore. I’d do almost anything to get rid of my schizophrenia. But is it a part of me the same way blue eyes or being tall is a part of someone else? Am I a schizophrenic man or a man with schizophrenia?

It’s kinder to yourself and more productive to consider yourself as a human being who happens to suffer from schizophrenia. Thinking of yourself solely as a schizophrenic basically means that you limit yourself to a label. You don’t want your whole identity to be a narrow, one-dimensional label. You don’t want to become a label. You want to be a person first and foremost who has a medical condition that MAY limit you in certain areas of your life. it is a treatable disease.

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My religious delusions were a significant part of my life. The delusions all mean something to me. Some of my experience was delusions, but I think some had spiritual importance to me.

Thank you.

I cycle through a lot of different notions. My most current one is that the way schizophrenia works is you are born with a predisposition but there is usually a trigger of some sort. I think it would have to be somewhat genetic because of the existence of child onset schizophrenia.

In 2007, I went through a very stressful event (which was all my fault but still stressful) and at the end of it I was diagnosed as schizophrenic and in a New Jersey psychiatric hospital. I always kind of wonder if I was genetically destined to always be schizophrenic or if the stress triggered it. If I hadn’t of moved and gotten in the situation I was in would I actually have a life like a real human boy kind of stuff.

At the same time, even though I don’t consider myself a full Buddhist, my schizophrenia has kind of led me to find meditation and embrace Buddhist ideology. I told my mom once that I sometimes think I was supposed to end up this way just because of that.

I don’t like the idea of absolute fate. I would prefer to think that things just happen and there is no definitives in life. Maybe my life would be even worse if things hadn’t ended up the way they did. Yet sometimes it is just so difficult.

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I prefer to think of myself as a person with schizophrenia, vs a schizophrenic. I think its a much more accurate description.

I do feel that schizophrenia is an innate part of me, that I was born with (my mom had schizophrenia). I don’t consider it a “curse” or spiritual affliction. But rather a faulty switch in my brain that was turned on by a series of stressful events during adolescence and early adulthood.

I try not to think of it as an illness really. But rather a characteristic of my being. I don’t say that I’m “ill.” I say I’m impaired. These notions make me feel more positive and hopeful about being a person with schizophrenia.

Blessings,

Anthony

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Hell no. It’s a condition. I manage it. Just like my diabetes. And my heart condition. The only way that my heart condition has become ‘part of me’ is that I have a pacemaker, but it doesn’t define me. (Except for the fact that I’m technically a cyborg, which is not too shabby. Don’t have a fusion battery powered endoskeleton, however.)

10-96

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To state my opinion I think of Schizophrenia as an illness, it may not have a cure at the moment, but with proper medication and therapy it can be held back at bay for some part. I know there will always be that one person that may not benefit regardless of how hard they try. After all I was going through panic attacks night after night until my psychiatrist and I worked out a medication treatment that worked. I still have some hallucinations/delusions which further illustrates my belief, that I believe this is really an illness.

Yet I am much better on this level of medication than I was on lower dosages. >>So it’s manageable, to a point. For me the voices/hallucinations will always be there because that is what Schizophrenia is. It is not who you are, it is what you have. What works for my treatment may not work for your treatment because Schizophrenia is different for everyone who suffers from the disorder. Especially considering there are various branches of the Schizophrenia disease. from paranoid sub-types to the disorganized sub-type and so on. Each human brain while we have the same chemicals are surprisingly different and unique…otherwise we would all be like exact copies of each other wouldn’t we?

Yet I don’t think stress alone is what caused my Schizophrenia, I was born 2 months premature and I think that had huge role in the development of my brain and the chemicals it needs to grow. Also I have a family history of mental illness, so it’s only natural that my brain would result in Schizophrenia.

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thought i would say hi.
take care

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Welcome to the group! I believe my schizophrenia also led me to religion - first Catholicism then Islam. I found that a relationship with God was the best way to cope with such difficulties, and I really believe that if it wasn’t for my illness I wouldn’t have found God as I have.
I consider schizophrenia to be part of myself, but not all. I feel as if there are sometimes two people in me - the real me and the schizophrenic monster/alien. Schizophrenia is a disease I know, but it is part of who I am, because I have had it so long (diagnosed eleven years ago). Even before that I suffered from some form of mental illness since I was 13, especially panic disorder. Over half my life (I am 30) I have had mental illness, so I can’t imagine life without it, it has become part of my identity make-up. But it doesn’t define me. I am firstly a female human being , then a Muslim, then a South African, then a wife/daughter/aunt/sister, then all the other things including schizophrenia.

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Welcome to the forum @Futomimi

I know this comparison doesn’t measure up… However it is a way that I try to help my son come to terms. I don’t know if it helps him or not. My husband takes Ciprelax for Generalized Anxiety Disorder. I take supplements and tinctures for menopause. Menopause is simple a physical condition that I need help controlling the symptoms of. Same with my husband and his anxiety. Controlling some of these symptoms help us to be who we really are. Having blue eyes is only a small part of the person that you are. There is so much more to you. You are a man first. :purple_heart:

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Schizophrenia is a complicated - complex brain disorder that effects our thoughts, moods to an extent, so it will flavor our personalities to a degree. It may seem like it is part of us and it may be, but schizophrenia should not be allowed to define you - you have schizophrenia - you are not schizophrenia

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There was a time where I figured that my sz had taken over and it was all of me. It defined me, dictated my life, and was the final word in all my decisions.

(“I can’t do that… I’m Sz. I can’t go to school… schizophrenic’s don’t do that.” … My life turned around lately and I find… I can NOT let this illness define me. )

As I got better and managed to start fighting this illness, I do see the value of making this illness less powerful. I’m a man first, I’m an older brother and a son and a friend, I work as a gardener, also I happen to have an illness that I find can be controlled with meds/ therapy/ help and awareness.

Don’t let any illness take all your power and identity.

@Futomimi welcome to the forum.

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I’m not diagnosed schizophrenic, but I believe myself to be at risk for developing the condition. I think there is a level of insight that I gain in some of my delusional beliefs I can catch myself developing from time to time. I think it’s a healthy part of who I am to have had to learn how to stand back and observe some of my thoughts from an objective standpoint. If I do in fact have the condition, I definitely think that it has been an important part of my mental formation into adulthood.

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There are two types of people diagnosed with schizophrenia; there are schizophrenic people and there are people who have schizophrenia. There is a huge difference. I love telling this little story. A schizophrenic person is controlled and therefore defined by the illness, it is their number one observable trait. A person who has schizophrenia doesnt let it get to them, fights it with all they can muster, and lives a good life despite it.

I don’t let this illness define me. In fact, I try to make it my bitch. They say medicated schizophrenics are lazy, out of shape and dont have occupations. I am jacked as ■■■■, I have done all sorts of sports, powerlifting, martial arts, bodybuilding, running, cycling, these days I am bodybuilding with some old pals from junior high. There is video in the creativity forum of me lifting 505lbs six times. I weighed 171lbs when I did that. I have a cumulative 3.8 GPA, factoring in my first year when I was not on meds or even diagnosed. I havent made a B on my transcript since I got on meds.

I have friends, I see my family often, I date people looking for the right one, someone who can handle me and isnt scared of me, and I think this guy I have started dating is a keeper, he knows about my condition and is very sweet. And yeah Im bisexual and leaning towards gay, I am a 21 year old man. I prefer the company of men. No offense to women but my psyche is very masculine and so far only other men can actually accept me. I look intimidating, I am muscular and have a military grooming style, a buzz cut and clean shaven, and I wear a lot of black and skulls and that sort of stuff. But I am 5ft 7in, I am the height of most girls.

Never let this illness define you. Just don’t accept that. There are too many adjectives besides “schizophrenic” that apply to me. Do keep in mind that I am not medication-resistant, my meds work pretty well and I am compliant with treatment. I suggest doing the same- I used to be in denial and I was not healthy back then.

I think of schizophrenia like a disease and nothing more. It can be beat. There are treatments. It does carry a stigma, lots of people do not understand the severity of schizophrenia and some dont even know what it is. The truth is that it is a waking nightmare that will never end until your blood level of tranquilizers is high enough or you die. I think getting enough major tranquilizers my body is the better option.

You really should join a support group- I went to the local NAMI group a couple of times but I was so highly functioning that it made me feel a little depressed seeing people who were quite ill. They are accepting and they are on your side- support groups are a great place for some people, if anything you will learn that you are not alone.

Just accept that you will have to live a different life than normal people. I am about to take my morning medications with breakfast, I have to take my antipsychotic twice a day with plenty of food. That is inconvenient and obnoxious. I dont feel hungry right now but have to eat a full meal. But that is worth sanity. I have to keep a little pillbox with all of my meds in it when I leave the house. I ingest six pills a day to keep it all under control. I get tired and need to drink caffeine to function. Sometimes I drink caffeine then take a nap. If you are wondering how I workout so hard, I take special weightlifting stimulants called “pre-workouts” which you mix with water. They stimulate the hell out of the brain and body.

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Thank you everyone for your responses. Even though each was very different they were all basically unanimous lol. They were all very supportive. I’m happy that everyone seems to have such a firm grasp on who they are as a SZ. Hopefully I will someday be in a place where I can be as comforting to someone else as you all have been to me.