What's your take on voice-hearers who have no other symptoms?

They often claim to be Mediums by treating their hallucinations like a Lucky 8-ball. I think it’s risky to make assumptions about your voices and even worse to sell your services as what basically amounts to daydream-interpretation.

Would you consider these people schizophrenics? I mean they don’t have any delusions except possibly “spiritual” beliefs, which aren’t really out of the ordinary in our society.

I put this in Unusual Beliefs instead of Lounge because I brought up Mediums, and I do not want to encourage belief in those practices because I don’t want to put ideas in vulnerable people’s heads.

Anyway, I used to think these people could actually hear spirits. Until I started hearing voices and they were very mean. No spirit would be that mean. Part of me clings to that possibility though because the idea of an afterlife is very soothing to me, and the voices are kind to me when I’m on medication.

Maybe the folks in question don’t think they’re sick simply because they don’t have any other symptoms? Anosognosia comes to mind, but some of these folks, who I’ve met with in the years before I started experiencing symptoms, seemed pretty together.

Sorry if this is not allowed, I’m trying not to break any forum rules, I just really want to talk about this here if it’s possible without causing too much trouble.

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You can hear voices and not be schizophrenic. There can be other medical reasons and other disorders.


If you believe your voices are true beings,
that is a delusion.


Not on the basis of hearing voices alone. Not according to the DSM-5. According to DSM-5 “two of these five symptoms are required AND at least one symptom must be one of the first three” The symptoms required are “1) delusions, 2) hallucinations, 3) disorganized speech, 4) disorganized or catatonic behavior, and 5) negative symptoms”

So voice hearing alone is not enough.


I thought I remember reading that if you hear two voices and they converse with each other, that counts as two symptoms and fits the diagnostic requirements. I’m not sure if I’m remembering that right or not.

Also they might have tactile, olfactory, or visual hallucinations as well.

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Yes, you are right. That was in previous versions of DSM though. It was dropped though because of “lack of specificity and poor reliability”.

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I’m not sure that’s 100% true. It’s possible to make a rational appraisal of your voices using the framework of the belief system you carried before you got sick. People who are not prone to delusions are probably the only people for whom such thinking is safe though.

I had read that voices are not enough
for sz diagnosis.
But if it’s running commentary, it’s enough.

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Oooh I hate running commentary, it makes me feel like I’m Will Ferrell in the movie “Stranger Than Fiction.”


They changed that in DSM-5
" In DSM-IV 2 of these 5 symptoms were required. However, only 1 of the 5 symptoms was required if delusions were bizarre or if hallucinations included a running commentary on a person’s thoughts/behavior, and/or two or more voices conversing. This exception has been removed for lack of specificity and poor reliability."


Oh interesting, I wasn’t aware of that change! I think that’s a better way to go about it.

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I frequently have running commentary.
It’s hell

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I stopped believing my voices were real and when i hear voices again that its rare i know they are fake i have no negative symptoms or delusions i only get really delusional on marihuana and psychedelics.

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If their only symptom is hearing voices then they are, by definition, not schizophrenic. They are not mentally ill at all just because of hearing voices.

Hallucinations aren’t even always tied to psychosis or negative feelings of any sort. I’ve met happy, functioning people who hear voices and are objectively doing fine with that.

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What about me? My only symptom was delusions

but you have some negative symptoms too, no? @Crystal-Cotton

I don’t think i have any

One symptom is not enough if your doctor follows the newest criteria in the DSM or ICD. Ask your doctor what your symptoms are.

ah i thought you weren’t so motivated anymore… i must have misread that =)

They insist I have olfsctory hallucinationd but its just that im sensitive to smells