Life During Your 20s

There is a saying that, the world is not going to give you anything. I just read an article from my 20 year old niece about the 20’s being formative years. It stated that the things learned, discovered and done during these year indicate what you will be doing through out your life.

Man, this is a bum rap for the sz in all of us. Schizophrenia hits right in the early 20’s and I am afraid that many of us fall through the cracks. All the talent and potential of the teen years is made solid during the 20’s and continued through life.

I can see that. I am 44 years old and it seems like yesterday that I was just starting the hear things (hallucinations) and have some crazy ideas about the world (delusions). It took 7 to 8 years of it to finally come to a head but by 30 everything was settled down mentally. but during my 20’s I was arrested a couple times, left homeless and friendless. Through it all I knew that I had to read and study as much as I could.

Those foundation like things helped me to have confidence when things got brighter. When I was on dates with my beautiful artist wife before we were married I could talk about all sort of cultured things; art and artists, being one of them. When I am in social situations formal and informal I know what to talk about. These experiences no matter out of the ordinary, form us.

In your 20’s you have to turn off the TV, read, write, learn to play a musical instrument, learn how to fix a computer, anything that involves making your self better will pay off big in your 30’s and the remainder of your life.

I could have told my wife about me and my problems that the illness causes. I could have told her about the arrest record. I could have been truthful with a lot of things. But instead I did not lie, I just talked about different things.

You have to keep fighting and things will get easier.


During my early 20s all i care was making money. I have promised myself that i am going to be rich by age 27. I made a huge amount of money and at age 27 schizo hit me. Since than i haven’t earned any money and i am slowly emptying my bank account. Now i understand that the most important thing for me should have been my health, the rest of them are empty dreams.

My 20’s was unfair. I didn’t get what I needed to know by that time I’m 30.

I am still in my 20s but I need to get better knowledge,social and financial wise

Nah, not true for me. I didn’t join the world of the living until age 21. Then by age 31, logged in more life experiences than most people experience their entire lives, both good, and bad.
From age 32-47after being officially Dx’d Sz, I was taken through some of the worse times I would ever know.
Have to say I drew on the knowledge gained from childhood to keep me strong. I credit my parents who taught us to do the right thing, and keep our minds strong and conscience clear, which in turn let us sleep peacefully at night, making us independent and strong. Not to say it was an easy ride, quite the contrary, but at this time of my life, after working hard, it finally pays off in being content.
It’s not the age of when things happen that determine how good the rest of your life will be, it’s how resilient you are and how determined you are to work through the tough time to be able to get your reward in life.


My twenties weren’t that good. Hospitals, drug addiction, my dad’s heart attacks. I can say I considering those factors I had quite a few 'experiences" I can look back on somewhat with pride. Yes, I missed out on learning what I needed. But I worked most of the time, had a few friends, did stuff with my family. No marriage, little dating. Took some college classes. Had my share of suffering.

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my twenties were totally wasted, i had no life, i did have a friend to help me through it tho so i guess it could have been worse.

My 20s were quite good, most of it I spent my time in America and traveled in the world. I was happily married and lived in Atlanta, but then when I was 30 years old I started hearing my first voices such as ‘You are with the Devil’ and so on. I knew since my childhood that I might get sz, because many relatives of mine have it, which is why I tried to have as a stressfree life as possible in my 20s. My 20s was actually quite nice and good, visited nice places such as Jamaica, Mexico and elsewhere.


My 20’s are the making of me. I’m not going to be rich, but I’ll be OK. I could have made my 20’s much easier on myself, by trying to stay off drugs and trying to stay on meds and stop being so angry when I was younger.

I’ve gone from homeless and deeply addicted to having a home, a job, and being clean and sober. I’ve gone from unmedicated and rabid to med compliant, stable and lucid. I used to be eaten up by the regret of what I’ve done versus what I haven’t done.

But now I’m going to catch up. I’m going to learn and keep getting better. I’m really looking forward to 30.


When I turn twenty I was in the Navy station on a ship. When I turn thirty I have live here for almost a year. In between it was one hell of a roller coaster ride. I was discharge from the Navy at 21 tried college and working but mostly living out of my backpack traveling across the country. At the end of my twenties I manage to get a pickup truck and my roaming became more comfortable. I finely settle down just after I turn twenty nine, and here I have stay since then. Over thirty years now.

From the country Ridgerunner

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I know exactly what you are saying, but for me and many other schizophrenics, looking back can do more harm than good. I try to think of the now, if I look ahead, this gets me in trouble too. I try to focus on the now, the present.
My past is full of heartache, my future is filled with too much uncertainty- got to focus on staying well, taking my meds all things I can control, I do. The past is done I cannot go back


I started out my 20’s with schizophrenia. Living on the streets, group homes, having friends that where really difficult except for one of them. My big achievement was a college degree. Then with meds my symptoms where gone and I decided to make up for the last 9 years by drinking like an alcoholic. However I did dedicate my self to maturing at this time. Basically with the voices gone I didn’t know what to think about so I just pondered my life questioning any thought that crossed my mind.

From 20-26 was spent in and out of psych hospital.

From 26-29 living in bed and breakfast/private lets, moving quite a lot. It was a basic existence and can’t say it prepared me for any big leap forward in my 30s. I guess i went up a level when i left hospital for the last time at the age of 26 and made further small steps in the following few years but no outstanding progress just consolidation for the last 25+ years.

Im am 20 and will be 21 in June. I my medication has me symptom-free and highly functioning, I am an honors student majoring in psychology and I am also an amateur powerlifter (will be joining a competitive team this summer, dont have time for it now). Age 19 was absolute psychotic hell for me, it has emotionally and psychologically scarred me and I will never be quite the same as I was before schizophrenia, although I am productive and have my life going well for me. I have simply been to hell, and I can’t just forget about being there for nearly two years (18 1/2- 20). 19 was a full year of complete psychosis, voices, hallucinating people doing and saying things, delusions, insomnia, alcoholism, a suicide attempt- all very unsavory and traumatic.

I just went to a party last night, drank but didnt get wasted (my meds quit working if that happens so I know my limits) and now I have a hangover. I hadnt been to a party in a long time before last weekend, and this time I went to one with all of my friends, and I wasnt the driver so whoops.

Kinda not feeling the drinking thing anymore. Hangovers are just no. Think im gonna stay sober from now on, this morning is not feeling good. I can have a good time without drinking, drinking just makes me stupid and forgetful since I am on multiple medications. Im gonna be the driver from now on!

I used to drink so much that I didnt get hangovers, and wow they are not fun. Now that my body isnt used to drinking anymore, it really just sucks to drink!

But I think that our twenties (as people who have schizophrenia) are crucial. In our twenties, we require professional help, medications, therapy. We also need to choose a life that will suit the severity of our condition- I am practically cured so I am pushing myself to achieve in school. Most of us should have a less stressful life, but if you’re above average intelligence and have a full ride to college just sitting in front of you (like me) then that is only appropriate and within the realm of capabilities.

But I am lucky to be born smart and born with a treatable case of schizophrenia. Elyn Saks said that living with schizophrenia is all about finding the life that works for you, and I can’t say that any better.

I could have done more with my twenties if I had not been so delusional. I should have listened to my own doubts more, and to others opinions.

My I have had a truly horrific time of it. I mean it was just awful. I’m recovering from what happened. But yea - like the OP I worked and studied hard - but I got little to nothing out of it.

Its been hard watching people - who didn’t work as hard as me get on… bigger cars, relationships etc… Its been hard. I hate SZ. Like - life is just half measures with it. I just wish things could have been different. I suppose one of the biggest things I lost was the ability to have conversations with people. Knowing what to say and when to hold back. I have very few friends and I rub people up the wrong way.

Its just been so damn hard. Like - why do people not recognise how hard life is with SZ. No one gets it.

The foums help and they dont - its hard reading about good people - who struggle like me. We dont have enough good outcomes with SZ. Everything is just so depressing.

I’m in my 20’s but I got on medication earlier. I’ve been doing well for awhile, but I started a medication called Buspar which started enhancing my symptoms. The symptoms included: de ja vu, paranoia, voices, really blurry vision (like affected my driving), enhanced my memory recall, and made my ears ring so much that I couldn’t benefit from it. I’m really sensitive to anti-depressants and other medications…so I’m not sure if I should keep taking it.

I don’t know if I really agree with that…or maybe I’m just an exception. In my 20’s I was stark raving mad.I had over 30 hospitalizations by the time I was 30. I still tried to work and support myself in my 20’s…but nothing worked to surmount the mental illness. Finally I ended up in a group home. There I met my husband to be. I got pregnant (deliberately…back then I did not consider myself to be SZ so there was no talk or thought of passing it on to my children. But the good news is that the doctor put me on a “brand new 2nd generation drug: Loxitane” simply because it was not yet known if it made danger for the fetus.And I responded dramatically to the drug…even on the tiny dose I was on…and I got “well” …Through out my 30’s I worked as an artist and did some jobs on the side - like housecleaning- to put my husband through school.
I did well to my mid 40’s. I stopped taking the Loxapine because I decided there was nothing wrong with me…well the lid blew off. I had 6 hospitalizations in 3 years. 1-2 mos each.
Then I finally went back on Loxapine…and have had two two week admissions one year apart. I now don’t do much because of physical disability. I have written a book and am now formulating a proposal as suggested by my agent.
I guess in a sense my denial of my illness in my 20’s and my continuous efforts to remain employed…maybe that helped me in my thirties to raise a child and have a career- Now I struggle with inertia. which is making the writing of this book take YEARS to complete. But I am making progress and it was well received by the agent. So I guess I just proved your theory right and blew my disagreement right out of the window!

I was arrogant, selfish, manic, all knowing, euphoric, paranoid, depressed, anxious and psychotic when I got off of the Navane - I was psychotic for years (delusional) but I had no clue, no insight

My twenties were pretty good, considering. Hanging out with the schizo crowd at the mental health center. They told me to act like I was normal. But it was acting. After a couple of bad interviews for volunteer work I gave up acting normal. It wasn’t worth it only to be insulted. It was someone else’s idea. The act was lonely.