Hello my sweet fellow sch brothers and sisters!
I would like to know how many of you think it’s their responsibility to become better as a diagnosed sch. I mean, it’s common sense, but I’d like to start a discussion on this topic. Here’s why:
I was diagnosed when I was 19 and went through hell and back to become healthy again. I would not accept the idea that Sch never gets cured. However, I found no therapy and no solution to my problem and, once every odd year I got a new hospitalisation with what they called acute transitory psychosis. Only after having a psychosis during my last term of pregnancy did I get the full blown diagnosys of Sch.
Now, having a child and a husband (and a dog and a cat) you might well imagine that I decided to stick to anything that made me feel better and could guarantee that I would not have a psychosis anymore. So I took Solian (amisulpride) for a few months and was extatic with the result: no more weird thoughts, nothing bad except some drowsiness that I could easily use coffee against. However it turned out that amisulpride pumped up my prolactine levels so I had to quit using that med, as I was lactating heavily and having no menses. So I got on abilify (aripripazole).
Now, for those of you who don’t know that already, abilify is not a dopamine antagonist as most antipsychotics are, it’s an agonist. From what I gather, instead of blocking per se the dopamine receptors, it acts as chemical version of dopamine and uses them up so the real dopamine is not used anymore.
In my terms, that means that instead of not having weird thoughts, I have my weird thoughts all the same, but I have also the time to realize that they are weird and act upon them so they won’t affect my behaviour in any way. It’s a conscious, exhausting everyday struggle. And, for the most part, I love it.
Because of my antipsychotics I cannot do a lot of things that I can do when I’m not medicated. I cannot have a strong argument because I forget my last 5 to seven sentences and lose the logic of it all. I cannot organize my stuff because of a similar reason: I don’t recall what my first intention was. I suffer from avolition and my dishes remain in the sink for a looong while, thing that doesn’t happen when I’m unmedicated. I documented a bit and realised that it’s part of the healing process, not having access to certain functions my brain does no longer elementary stuff like relying on memory to continue a process.
All of this makes me wonder: am I going to be ever able to sustain my arguments as I did when I was healthy/unmedicated? Am I ever going to be able to function like a normal person? My husband, having read all the available studies on the subject matter sais yes, only on one condition: I have to force my brain to compensate for all the things that the (needed!) medication does not allow it to do on its regular paths. I have to simply re-wire my brain, day by day, to do the right thing.
So I’ve decided yesterday, after a very bad time (some of you have seen the post) that I will smile when I’m depressed, I will talk more when my tongue refuses to move correctly, I will look everybody in the eye when my brain says I’m under siege and I have to run (as it often does). I will no longer drink coffee as it stimulates my dopamine secretion, no more synthetic sweetners either for the same reason. I will learn something all the time and stay focused as much as I can, not allowing my brain to take shortcuts through the paths it already knows (which are blocked). I will exercise to become more fit and more active. Most of these I already do.
Sorry for the long, intellectual post, but I would like to know if you have some resolutions of this sort. I tried to explain my situation because I’ve heard a lot of people saying they feel worse on Abilify. I think it’s true, Abilify demands a lot of self-discipline and will to function , and many a days I feel like quitting myself, and asking for an all-numbing pill instead, irrespective of the side effects.
Let me know what you think on this subject matter.