I have had a schizoaffective disorder diagnosis for about 16 years. Back in my early twenties, around the time of my diagnosis, I was fairly social. I lived in a city in Southern California, still kept in contact with many of my high school friends and had others and went places where I might meet people. I also made constant attempts to mend fences with my very damaged family.
It’s not all doom and gloom; I am happily married and my husband has a large family. We interact with a lot of them weekly. I keep in contact with my mother and step-father. I help my husband with Lego Club, so I see the kids, the parents and the 4-H folks. None of this is going poorly.
Nevertheless, I’ve lost nearly all desire to communicate with the rest of my family and while much of this is situational, it also mirrors the rest of my desire to be social. I’m just not willing to make the effort, anymore. I really don’t have friends other than my husband. It seems like it’s just too damned hard to try. I live in the middle of nowhere now and that makes it harder. Even discussion forums at the university I attend online are stressed because people act like they want to keep in contact and seem to flawlessly socialize with one another. I manage to fake it just enough to make it work but it makes me really uncomfortable but I’ve been doing these discussions for over seven years; it seems like I’d have gotten better at dealing with them.
Now, I know it’s “normal” for schizophrenics and those with schizophrenia-related illnesses to avoid socializing but is there a way to feel less isolated? I know my therapist would tell me to go do something around people but it feels like there’s a constant drudgery in that. I’ve been doing these things and I’m tired. They wear me out each and every time. It’s not significantly improving.
How is everyone else doing socially? If you’re doing better than me, do you have any advice?