I am an 19 year old female. I have no major health concerns and I’m not on medications. I will reveal a few personal details in here but I am NOT trying to evoke pity or seek attention. I just want answers on here. This will be long but bear with me. I’m sorry if this sounds nonsensical or jumbled, I am really trying my best.
My father is mentally ill. He exhibits almost every schizophrenic symptom there is; hallucinations, delusional beliefs, disorganized thoughts, etc.
However, he has not been officially diagnosed. These symptoms started when he was 30 (I was 2) and he is now 46. These symptoms have been ongoing although they improved with age somewhat. He still gets episodes and these delusional beliefs of his has not changed. He is paranoid and is convinced that everyone persecuted him and is out to get him. He is often incoherent when he speaks. He used to be violent but not anymore. But whenever my family takes him to the hospital, he gives them the best impression he has and he refuses medications or believes he needs help. He appears normal to them and they think there’s nothing wrong.
I’m not saying he has schizophrenia since I know it is wrong to diagnose people if you aren’t a professional. However, he obviously has something severely wrong.
When my mother was pregnant with me she did LSD, marijuana, and consumed excessive amounts of caffeine.
Now, I love my family, but they are not the most supportive network when it comes to mental illnesses. They often fight with my dad and insult him, provoking his mental states.
Now, to me. I have shown severe signs of not socializing since I was 2 years old. I would not speak to anybody but my mother, father, and cousins. If a stranger tried to talk to me, I would hide behind my family.
My mother put me in preschool, where I refused to talk to anybody. I would not say a single word. Whatsoever. I made no friends. That’s when they started to try to diagnose me with autism.
My mother refused to believe that I had anything wrong with me. She would not let them diagnose me, and it turns out they couldn’t any way because I have a couple traits that apparently prove I’m not autistic. They tried to diagnose me with avoidant personality disorder, but couldn’t, because I wasn’t 18.
Most kids grow out of their shyness, but for me it has not changed. I still can barely speak to people and I have difficulty forming and keeping friendships and relationships. My only friends are my cousins and my best friend. I don’t know many social skills but I know basic social etiquette.
When I was 12, I began to “lose” my emotions. I had a very flat feeling, like nothing could stimulate me anymore. However, I have somewhat overcome this. I do have feelings and I do care about other people, and I have found a few stimulants, writing being one of them. But there are many times where I feel “dead”.
When I was 13, I was depressed for a long time. I had suicidal thoughts and engaged in self-harm. I managed to overcome this by thinking positively.
When I was 17, I started smoking marijuana, sometimes excessive amounts. I was not aware that this was another risk factor for developing schizophrenia, or I would have never started. I quit a while ago.
The reason I am telling about my antisocial behaviour as a kid is because that’s another risk factor. I experience stressful situations often, although not as much anymore.
I have had some trauma in my life, including sexual assault (not from family) that gave me delusional beliefs about my sexuality and life. I watched my father almost kill my mother in a violent episode, and I watched someone nearly kill him at gunpoint. I read somewhere that traumatic stressful situations can trigger schizophrenia.
Anyway, starting a few years ago, even before I began smoking marijuana, I began to lose focus and concentration. My grades became worse and I lost motivation to go to school as often. I developed a grandeur that I would become a famous writer. I somehow managed to graduate on time a few months ago with decent grades in advanced classes.
I have awkward behavior that has been with me since I was at least 13. I pace around my room often for no reason because sitting still aggravates me. If I’m not pacing, I zone out for hours and daydream. I put aside significant hours of my freetime just to daydream. I have recently enjoyed taking walks and hiking but find that I am going in no particular direction with no destination. I have been told I rest in awkward positions and drink and eat food very strangely. I have been told I walk “just like my father” (I only visit him once a month, aside from one time when I was a kid. he kidnapped me during an episode and I was locked in his house for several months until my mom convinced the police to rescue me). I sometimes start a project but end up with something completely different due to illogical planning. I don’t notice these things much to be honest, others point them out to me. This behavior feels natural to me.
I have a few delusional beliefs that I know are stupid, but they affect me ever day. For example, I hate eye contact because I think that the person is looking into my eyes to invade my soul and learn all my secrets and flaws to criticize me. I do not take well to criticism and I hate being teased, I find it hard to distinguish whether or not they are mocking me.
Three weeks ago, I heard a voice from the wall whisper to me. Last night, I kept hearing a cat scream even though none of my family could hear it. I am starting to see cats out of the corner of my eye. We have cats, but not a black one, which I am seeing.
My thoughts are what is really starting to bother me. It seems to be my most prominent symptom. I am going to try my best to make sense out of this… basically, my thoughts seem to be disappearing from my head. I’ll be like “hey mom” and then I’ll forget what I was going to say, or ill even start a sentence but have no idea how to finish it. My brain is becoming like autocorrect, where I have a thought and I’ll edit it over and over mentally before I say it or type it because I know it’s illogical, and I need to remember where to put what words. I have been misusing words completely. I have actually edited my sentences several times during this very topic because I keep using incorrect words. This is frustrating because I am a writer and my writing quality is getting worse because of my thoughts.
I am really scared about becoming schizophrenic. I want to be a normal person but I realize that these are all signs of early schizophrenia before it becomes full blown. I’ve seen the way that my family treats my dad and he often gets judged. I don’t want my family to hate me so I haven’t told them these problems because they’re all I have. Even if I did, they would probably shut me down and say I just have anxiety. I don’t, I actually feel mostly dead, not anxious.
Should I see a psychiatrist? Can they even tell if I am schizophrenic at this point, or do I have to wait to see what happens? What would be the best course of action right now?
EDIT: I messed up a few sentences very badly because of my stupid thoughts. Sorry about that. I hope they are fixed and make sense now.