Online dating (when to disclose the diagnosis)?

It seems most times when I get chatting with someone and finally admit I have a mental illness, it is the moment I never hear back. I usually reveal this after emailing back and forth (just before meeting up stage). I tell them the truth – in that I have had no symptoms for several years and I do everything I possibly can to prevent any relapse and I work full-time etc. No matter how I explain it whether it’s through writing or over the phone, results in rejection. I usually don’t hear back, or it’s “I don’t date schizophrenics” or “I can’t trust you with my kids sorry “

They say honesty is the best policy. It’s getting very disheartening. Keeping in mind with online dating if one thing about you is a little “off” it is slash and burn operation.

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I’m the same way as you. I don’t feel comfortable dating someone without disclosing my diagnosis. It’s tough to deal with because you feel compelled to tell, yet are judged so harshly. Not sure how to answer your question, but just wanted to give solace to you :confounded:


You are a male or female?

I’d wait to meet them a few times and let
Them get to know you first before your diagnosis


Probably the best advice but it’s tough for me to not say anything

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I used to be the same way so I didn’t date for 5 years. Now I have gotten to know myself better and accepted myself. Id like my future partner to do the same


I’m male, thanks for your replies folks

I met my husband online. I feel strongly that putting yourself before the mental illness is important. Let someone get to know you, and show them who you are consistently over time, and then you can share that deeper part of yourself. There’s no way, because of stigma and lack of information, that my husband would have taken on someone with sz generally speaking. But when I told him what I deal with and why I was in therapy, he already knew me and cared about me. The sz should never come first.


I thought you were a man :laughing:

Nothing against your posting style, it’s just you never mentioned you were female and you have a screen name like “Hedgehog”…for some reason i thought you were male :laughing:

I like how you put it “Put yourself before the mental illness”

Good feedback


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Ha! Glad I don’t have a picture of myself and you thought I was a man! :wink:

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Its not a good idea to tell the other person right away.

Its best to let someone know once you get to know each other more.

I let my ex wife know about my mental illness after 4 or 5 “dates” - she suffered from a mental illness as well.

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Make her laugh.if she falls for you then tell her.if she accepts then she really loves you :relaxed:

Tell him/her that you are deemed schizophrenic due to atypical views that are considered unrealistic yet they aren’t. Simple.

I told my fiance after three dates. Schizophrenia is a scary word to a lot of folks, because they don’t know what it is outside of movies where we are the villains. Give them a chance to meet you and see you aren’t a serial killer.


I met my wife via online dating back in 1999 when the whole thing was still considered “new” and “freaky”. We e-mailed back and forth for a week and then started talking on the phone. It was during the second week of phone coversations that I emptied the skeletons out of my closet, which she appreciated. That included being about 7 years sober in AA at the time and Sz. We married in the summer of 2000. We’re still together and have a teen daughter.

It’s been a great 16 years together and I couldn’t have done many of the things I’ve accomplished without the support of my wife. She’s seen me in the hospital once because of an Sz relapse and had my back.

I’m very glad we have an honest relationship where we are open with each other. I recommend it to others.



One relapse in sixteen years?! That is impressive!

Time for an inappropriate joke!
When I go out on the date the first thing I tell her is that I just finished serving ten years in prison for being a serial killer. If she accepts that, then telling her I have schizophrenia is not so bad and once we get past that I tell her I was kidding about being a serial killer and the date usually goes smoothly.


It’s bad for men. Really bad. For women, they appear to be “a damsel in distress”.

Uh buddy I have disclosed it to some who asked why I study psychology. I didn’t disclose it until much later to one guy, then he immediately dumped me. I saw a med student who was bipolar for a bit and that was because I went looking for mentally ill women (craigslist). I dated a girl who told me she was mentally ill first on tinder. Yes I am bisexual. I’m male.

I am sometimes up front with it, but usually only on a date when they ask me why I study psychology.

Dude it’s a crappy situation, I’m even doing research, a thesis on stigma, and it’s just really bad. The stigma is bad.

I would say wait till after you get intimate, you know, once you’ve sort of established something with them. By that I mean sex because realistically people have sex a lot and mostly only if they trust the other person. I mean sex, not ■■■■■■■. ■■■■■■■ is casual and doesn’t mean anything.

If you’re religious, then after you’ve met their family and been emotionally intimate, when you feel a strong connection.


My old-fashioned opinion: if you ever get to the point where you think you might be interested in the other person as a partner in a long term relationship (how long would that take, at least a few dates?), then disclose. Again, once you know you like the person. Don’t disclose to people you might not even wish to date, is my idea…

Yes, honesty always, but third or fourth date sounds like a time when people might start to talk about themselves more openly. If you are working and have not had symptoms for years, it’s true to say you have schizophrenia that has been in remission for ___ years. Be honest that relapse is possible and share the ways in which you work to prevent it.

I would guess to disclose prior to physical intimacy or any type of commitment.

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Be gracious that you have the courage to disclose. I’ve had two short relationships and both my partners were ok once I told them. This is after dating for a few weeks. I say, don’t give up, and trust your judgement–it often times can be better than theirs.