Schizophrenia.com

Never Had Insight

How does it happen and what does it feel like when you get it?

I’ve always enjoyed full insight, but it didn’t seem to make much of a difference. It will depend on how ‘florid’ your (positive) symptoms are.

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Insight is sometimes accompanied by a headache which doesn’t make anything improve, just different.

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I had insight sometimes and then I’d go into having no insight. Over and over again in cycles. At the moment I am struggling to comprehend my sza. Like I know I’m ill but need my pdoc to remind me because I don’t feel ill. And I sometimes deny my symptoms and think nothing is wrong. But my pdoc said I do have an illness (sza)

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Virtually no one here has that.

That’s like asking a cloud what it’s like to be a basketball.

After it’s been doped up on ‘basketball’ drugs to ‘heal’ it.

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It’s like a switch is flipped and you look at things you said or believed like…“what was I thinking?”

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The weirdest is when you have insight, but still believe your delusions. So its like “I am definitely a demon who sucks the life out of people. That is objectively ridiculous and impossible. If I tell anyone, I will be called crazy. There is no possible way this is true. But I believe it with all my heart.”

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It can take a long time. For me it was about 7 years. How long have you been diagnosed?

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I’ve been hearing voices for almost 10 years. I’ve always believed they were real.

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Hi @Musicdance. My psychiatrist says I have an unusually high level of insight into my schizophrenia. My insight started to develop about 2 or 3 years after I was diagnosed and medicated. Hallucinations and delusions create a patchwork like fused consciousness stream with unsubstantiated unreal segments merged in between real accurately perceived segments. As insight starts to develop you start to recognize which segment of your consciousness stream is real and which is unreal or being played for you like audio or video coming from your mind. Insight builds on itself. The more you come to recognize what is real and not real the more you come to recognize what is real and not real. Best of everything on your journey to wellness.

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Thank you so much, @Unclehenry. I can tell which segment of my consciousness stream most people would consider unreal, but I can’t at this time see it as unreal myself. Something to work on, though.

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I’ve had insight since beginning medication, which was only like a few months after my onset, so it’s been a while since I’ve had it. Now, that is not to say that I’ve had perfect clarity all the time, but it does mean that I don’t believe 100 percent into my delusions. I still get confused at times, but those are becoming rarer and rarer, and I also get more and more insight each time.

As for what it feels like when you get it, well, it makes you feel amazing and silly at the same time. It makes you feel amazing by finally being freed of major, terrible delusions. But it also makes you feel silly because you just came out of a delusion that you felt was 100 percent real; and delusions don’t feel too good.

My insight is less about my hallucinations and more about my delusions and paranoia… or to put it differently, when I got my insight back it destroyed those delusions. I’m totally in the real world now, no more believing absolute nonsense. My mother was so happy when I got insight back, she often says she thought I was going to be completely unreachable for the rest of my life. It hurt her having to put me out of the house and watch me suffer, whilst all the time I remained angry at her for things she didn’t even do.

It took a couple of years after my initial psychotic break for the delusions to go away. I don’t know how long you have had the disease but some people to break free of it in the first 5-10 years, at least for the most part… assuming they seek treatment.

As far as voices go, I really wanted to believe that mine were spirits from the afterlife. It’s confusing because a lot of the time they are very kind to me and compliment me when I am feeling like ■■■■. Problem is 10% of the time they treat me like garbage. I suppose I am still not 100% convinced they are always false, maybe I never will be. What I need to do is get to a place where I can hold two simultaneous beliefs… that there might be an afterlife, and also that if there is one, it doesn’t necessarily mean I can talk to people there.

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Very interesting to read about your experience, @agent101g. I’ve been hearing voices for almost ten years. They used to be nice about 25 percent of the time and mean the rest, but now they are only mean. I’d like to aquire insight because they are so scary and mean that I don’t want to think they’re external. It would be easier to take the insults if I thought it was only my own mind doing it to me. I also think it would be nice to believe in the afterlife even if I acquired insight.

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I’m sorry to hear that they’ve gotten meaner for you. Mine used to be relentlessly mean before they started turning nice. I attribute it to the environment… I used to live in rough conditions, but now I live with a very supportive family member in an environment with less stress and a lot more kindness. However it could just be random…

Mean voices are the worst. They really wear you down over time, and you can only ignore them so much. I’ve been hearing voices for almost 6 years now. For me the best way to reduce them is to ignore them… if I talk back, they start talking a lot more. I really hope things ease up for you. It’s also easy to forget that when you’re alone, you truly are alone. The voices aren’t really conscious beings so you still have your privacy even though it seems like you don’t.

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Good idea to try to ignore them. They are so terrible that it’s practically impossible, but I’ll keep trying.

It’s helpful for you to say that when you are alone, you truly are alone. I never feel alone, although the company in my head could be 1000 percent better. Thanks so much for the very insightful words.

Your meds really should control the hallucinating. I get visuals that I can also hear and they are quite scary because they seem real to me. I can’t really tell when I am hallucinating usually but my meds control them.

I would be mad otherwise. You need to get with your doctor and get an increase or try something new.

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