Main -> Dating -> Dating With Schizophrenia - The New York Times

Dating With Schizophrenia - The New York Times

A Schizophrenic Woman Answers 14 Creepy Questions

Dating is hard. Dating when you are overweight is harder. Dating when you are a big dude with a serious mental illness is nearly impossible. But there are a lot of obstacles. Schizophrenia is a terrifying word for many people. It conjures up ideas of murderous intent, lack of control and a host of other scary things.

I could tell you plenty of stories, none very pleasant. One of my customers had an employee who is schizophrenic medicated and I still had to be careful around him unexpected responses to normal interaction. I would not date an unmedicated bi-polar or schizophrenic. You mention his stoic demeanor. Is it possible that he stonewalls?

That I believe is a common affliction of passive-aggressive individuals. Does he do drugs non-prescribed kind? Because that can explain the other behavior. And schizophrenia can be predisposed within family members although it is not hereditary as far as I know. Originally Posted by TwoForgiving. I'm dating a schizophrenic right now. His affect can sometime be very flat. I didn't know it became more so when schizophrenics take meds - that's interesting.

He will be flat, then abruptly burst into laughter at something, then calm back down again. He's worried that his medication isn't high enough, because he gets paranoid delusions sometimes. He is very careful to be kind, however. He knows about my past history of abuse, and he says he wants me to have better. Sometimes he had difficulty letting out his emotions - he says a big part of it is the medications.

They numb you.

I used to take the same meds, when I was misdiagnosed. Some of them, with adverse effects, can literally make you into a living zombie.

That's what Risperdal and Geodon did. Abilify messed up my vision and my sleep. Everyone has different reactions, and a lot of therapists are really leery to take their patients off meds or change them - particularly with a diagnosis as severe as schizophrenia. There are different types of schizophrenia.

One of them is primarily with hallucinations, where you see or hear things in your mind. Photo via Flickr page Health Blog. Here are some things you need to know about schizophrenia : If you have it, you're forced to question everything, whether it's real or invented by your own mind.

One in every people will develop it, often in their early 20smeaning there's a chance you know someone who has it, even if he or she doesn't seem schizophrenic at all.

I was diagnosed with schizophrenia nine months ago, after a slew of other diagnoses—depression, generalized anxiety, anorexia, borderline personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, psychotic disorder, body dysmorphic disorder, conversion disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and bipolar disorder—failed to explain the complexity of my symptoms.

Some of those diagnoses still stand, but others have been replaced by the newer schizophrenia diagnosis. My doctors seem to think I'm doing well—or, as they put it, I am "high functioning. It started three years ago, when I woke up to a small rushing inside of my head—like when you hold a shell to your ear and can hear the faint crash of waves.

I went into work later that evening, and everything seemed normal. I ran the register, I stocked shelves, I cleaned the bathroom and swept the floor. Then I started to notice that the voices of the customers sounded strange, as if a second voice in the background was trying to catch up. That evening, I had my first auditory hallucination, something that happens to 75 percent of people with schizophrenia. Later, I had my first visual hallucination—a man who grabbed onto me and whispered sentences that hardly made sense.

He followed me home. I found myself convinced that he was there to kill me and could read my mind. More than that, I was entirely convinced this man was real. On Motherboard: What Schizophrenia Isn't. After that, my mind was never quiet again. I stopped sleeping regularly, and when I did sleep, I had terrifying nightmares about alien abduction.

I grew paranoid about the people around me and started to disassociate. Gradually, I began to feel more and more like a balloon attached to a distant body. Over the next two years, I attempted suicide twice and was hospitalized six times, where nurses would give me gowns with no strings.

At the time, doctors didn't suspect schizophrenia, which affects about 1 percent of the population. I later learned that that 1 percent translates to about 2. Returning to high school after my hospitalizations, I made up stories to answer the inevitable barrage of questions. I lied to everyone, save a few teachers, and tried to pretend everything was fine. I don't mean to be rude but that must be exhausting for both of you. Good on you for being able to handle that.

This might sound weird but do you ever feel responsible for her happiness? It's the source of many of our fights the other half being my sometimes clumsy handling of emotionsbut we always get over it. She still thinks all of these things, she just puts it away for the time being. In a sense, I do feel very responsible for her happiness.

Not in a way that I don't believe she can be happy without my help. I just know that she can use a lot of support and I'm happy to provide it. Is this you? Once she did see a strange creature run across the road and insisted that I look. Yep, didn't see that one, oddly enough. If there is a situation, for instance, a person she cannot decide whether if real or not. Can't she simply pick up a physical object, and ask that person to hold it?

I'm assuming if they're a hallucination, they'll be incapable of carrying out her request. Or snap a photo of the vision, just to see if it appears recorded. Just curious of methods that can be performed to help prove reality from hallucination. She has a strict policy of not interacting with things she suspects are hallucinations.

If she really can't tell, she'll ask me if I see them. If I don't, she tries to ignore them.

I've been talking to this girl for a few months; we hooked up a few times and generally enjoy each others company. I have not discussed. To the girl who was dating his friend, he seemed perfectly normal and even Some people with schizophrenia are quite vulnerable and need a certain kind of . My doctor is starting to think I have schizophrenia. A mild case, and I'm stable. I'm not a project, I'm a full time student who also works

I'm wondering how you'd deal with that, in a practical sense. Hallucinating red-eyed goats would be bad. You can ignore the freaky stuff because its freaky, but how do you function if you dont know whether the cup in front of you is real or not? Most of them are fairly mundane, which can make them hard to identify on her part. She has gotten into the habit of not responding to her name being called because of the frequency of it being hallucinatory in nature.

I can't think of a way to ask this without being somewhat crude, so forgive me. Aren't you afraid she'll completely snap, some day? It's a fair question and something we have talked about before.

She's fairly convinced that it's an inevitability, but I'm an optimist, so I'm going to see what happens. I have my own issues and she is just as patient with me, so I'm sure we'll just stick it out together. No, none of the unfurred variety. I personally detest children no offense, I just.

I personally think she could, but I'm not talking up an issue I don't even really want. I can't tell you how much it pissed me off when upon meeting an old friend and telling her in context, mind you that I never wanted children, her reply was:.

There is nothing wrong with not wanting kids. I'm there too I was actually thinking of doing "I'm female and loathe children.

Dating With Schizophrenia

I've been told I was selfish for not wanting children because "now that child will never be born because of you. Where is the logic!?

This story is a little absurd. I am a 22 year old female, just about graduating college and I had a bit of a fling with an older guy on Tinder. He. r/AskWomen: AskWomen: A subreddit dedicated to asking women questions about their thoughts, lives, and experiences; providing a place where all . Here are some things you need to know about schizophrenia: If you have it, you' re forced to question everything, whether it's real or invented by.

My response to the selfish response is always 'you're absolutely right. I don't want kids because I'm selfish, want things for myself like free time, vacations, and sex anywhere anytime, and don't want to sacrifice for them.

The difference is- I realized it before having a child and resenting it. I'm not going to bring an unwanted child into this world. I might be selfish, but at least I'm responsible about it. For reference, I'm a mid-twenties female in a female dominated profession where everyone seems to ether want kids or have kids. This post made me smile so much! As someone who lives with a chronic mental illness, I am often aware that some guys won't go out with me based only on me having an illness. I get why, it just sorta sucks.

It may sound odd, but I have found LGBT couples are generally more accepting of a partner having a mental illness. Have you found that to be true? I hope you have a long, happy marriage and that your wife will find relief from this someday.

You totally gave me hope :. I think it could very well be true. It's possible that the LGBT community is simply more sympathetic from having to combat their own stigmas in the world; that they can better understand what people with mental illness go through every day.

Sorry if this is too personal, not everyone likes to talk about this stuff but I am interested in sexuality and I'm wondering if Schizophrenia impacts your bedroom time? Basically does it kill the lady boners or do you look the goat in the eyes and finish like a boss? I would say sex is a major element in soothing her nerves and venting stress.

We have sex with alarming frequency and actually roleplay pretty often to embellish the experience. It's a way to approach issues and experiment in safe ways. She does prefer to have sex in the dark and with her eyes closed to prevent potential boner-killing from hallucinations. Has she ever tried sensory deprivation? I have no idea whether that would be soothing or aggravating. She often takes showers in the dark in which she just sits at the bottom of the tub and lets the white noise block out everything.

I suppose it's a means of self-treatment when she's feeling overwhelmed. Have you looked at noise generators? The mind filters most sound below a certain level. I think these just fake it out and make it think the minimum interesting level is higher, so that you don't notice noises that would otherwise have caught your attention.

It might perceptually filter some of the street noises. We tend to do simple things, like run fans when trying to fall asleep. Having some form of white noise is imperative to her relaxation. Reading this, I imagined you both sexing each other in your sleep and one of you waking up and going "Oh god, again?! She writes the graphic novel I illustrate and a lot of the other material I work off of.

I am a creative leech. No problem, we actually just recently launched a site to feature it. It's here at Findchaos. Quick survey shows a few research projects which have done comparisons e. So that's a yes. Firstly Thank you for actually taking the time to answer the questions about this sensitive subject. Is she well controlled on medications and you only have to deal with any complications when she forgets, or do problems arise on meds and all?

No problem at all, I don't think it's a subject that should be left in the dark. People seem to avoid talking about it pretty often, though.

My wife is not currently on any medication. She has been on medication before, but felt uncomfortable with the way it made her feel or not feel, as the case may be.

Since she can function reasonably well by herself, she strongly prefers to remain unmedicated. She does have some very bad days because of that, but I'd rather she was comfortable most of the time than unhappy all of the time. Schizophrenia can be progressive if left untreated - the synapses get used to an oversupply of dopamine, so neuronal remodeling can actually take place.

I know that negative symptoms can be really shitty, but I hope you guys might reconsider the med thing - you know, maybe re-evaluate the risks and benefits. Who knows, maybe there is a cocktail out there that won't make her feel like crap.

Yes, they did as far as treating schizophrenic symptoms. On the other hand, she felt complete lack of ambition or emotions, which I think she decided felt worse than her natural symptoms. How do you know if someone is schizophrenic? My boyfriend told me that he created a friend in his head out of loneliness, started as a dream character and is now a full hallucination that he says he sees all the time. He likes his friend and doesn't what to lose him so he doesn't tell anyone else or try to change it.

You usually have to be clinically diagnosed. Schizophrenia is often accompanied by secondary forms of mental illness, and there are certain conditions that resemble elements of schizophrenia without being the condition itself.

I would recommend he seek some form of diagnosis. Fictional crazy people have one thing and overplay the crap out of it according to unrealistic conventions designed to give the audience cheap thrills. The thing is their identity, their badge, the whole of their character.

Real crazy people have symptoms - and "crazy people" itself is really sort of a stupid label. There are good days and bad days, and "crazy" is just an undescriptive term for people whose bad days are likely to disturb others around them.

A paranoid schizophrenic will not have every symptom listed in the DSM-IV TR under that heading and they may have a few that are listed in completely different areas. People are unique. This is a big part of why it's so hard to diagnose and treat mental illness.

Treatment has to be highly individualized with constant feedback according to changing conditions in order to be anything more than a blunt hammer which smashes square pegs into round holes. When it works well, more often than not it's because of the support the person gets from their loved ones. I'm completely ignorant when it comes to hallucinations of any kind, so my apologies if these questions are misguided or insensitive in any way.

For auditory hallucinations, does plugging one's ears have any effect, or is it internal?


Or for visual hallucinations, does closing one's eyes make them go away or do they persist with eyes closed? Has she ever tried to interact with a hallucination? Like, if she tried to pet the goat or something, or throw something at it, what would the results be?

Are there ever perceived smells or touches that go along with hallucinations? Covering her ears doesn't stop the auditory hallucinations. I think that is a large factor in her enjoyment of white noise which drives me crazy, but hey. Visual hallucinations are blocked by closing her eyes, but she insists she can still "sense" it.

She is very emphatic about never interacting with her hallucinations, with the conviction that it would only make things worse. I made the mistake of referring to the hallucinatory goat directly and it made her very upset. Pink noise is probably more appropriate. It rolls off with frequency.

Schizophrenics Explain What It Is Like To Have Schizophrenia - AskReddit

This makes it much less caustic on the ear. Adjusting the volume level is also important. There are samples of both types on Wikipedia. Pink noise should almost disappear after a short period if it's not too loud and if you're not focusing on it. Have you ever interacted with her hallucinations, whether by accident or on purpose? For example, what would happen if you got out of bed and walked "through" the goat?

I am at the early developmental stages of paranoid schizophrenia, EDIT: Also I' d like to mention I've tried dating right now, and it's just nearly. I can imagine dating a schizophrenic could be a deal breaker for some people. I' ve never been in a relationship or really dated before so I'm. I never have dated a schizophrenic but do have some friends who have bi-polar I would not date an unmedicated bi-polar or schizophrenic.

Apparently, yes, by accident. And nothing would happen except I would appear to have bent space by walking through a solid object in her mind.

I've heard similar stories about people with visual hallucinations not wanting to interact with them because of the suspicion that it would "make it worse". I find that to be interesting and wonder if it comes from the paranoid aspect of it or something else entirely.

Has she ever seen the Schizophrenia Simulation video? How accurate does she think it is? She's seen and she didn't like it very much. I think it hit too close to home. Although she says no one can understand the auditory hallucinations unless they have them and she doesn't understand why the voices they used were so monotone and disjointed. Does she have a job?

Do you feel as though people ever pity you because your wife is "crazy" and you're, er, "normal"? Is she apologetic for her condition? Yes, she does. I think she would be less stressed by far to not have one, but she feels it is necessary at this time.

I would love to be in a position to support us both in the near future, however. It's possible that the people who know feel this way, but I've never detected it myself.

Dating with schizophrenia reddit

We usually downplay the eccentric aspects of our lives out of privacy and fear of judgement. I'm not sure she is "apologetic," but she is aware of it. If she has a particularly bad day, she'll apologize to me profusely as she gets over it. Particularly bad? If I can get out of bed and actually function instead of falling into a little ball crying and screaming, then it gets weirder.

Paranoid thoughts are on stage; I will often monitor the cars outside, the people walking past, the noises I hear to see if they repeat themselves. If they do, I go into panic mode. I won't drink any water that day - it's poisoned I am often dehydrated. I shut all the windows curtains so no one can see in. I might spend a long time in the bathroom, as its the most internal room of the house with the most padding. I usually get very upset with my spouse - a laundry list of not caring about me, cheating on me when I'm away, lying to me constantly about her habits.

I will hear her say things even though she reassures me she hasn't or I don't see her mouth move. I will have perception hallucinations if I'm sitting, the floor will suddenly 'jump' up at meI will see things out of the corner of my eye, and if left alone for too long, they can manifest themselves more vividly.

I don't know why they're more vivid when I'm alone. Sometimes I can break the cycle. It's never exactly the same. I was in hospital for six weeks two and a half years ago for a severe head injury. It was most intriguing to see my brain go through a comprehensive list of all the things that had scared me growing up, and project them walking around the ward I was in.

A lady who had drowned in a lake, the Ring's Samara's mother, the levitating gentlemanly vampires from Buffy. I'd also get reassuring hallucinations from time to time.

I've had a little success dating in the nearly 10 years I've lived with schizophrenia. But there are a lot of obstacles. Schizophrenia is a terrifying. Date, Time, Person, Description, Remind . I know you said she has paranoid schizophrenia, but catatonia can happen in that case as well. This is going to sound really harsh, and only because I do not know the degree of your hallucinations/delusions and how bad your OCD is.

One time an entirely blue Christopher Lloyd looked down at me in my bed and gave me an empathetic face like this. The only hallucination that really effected me was one based on the ticky clicky feeding tube apparatus. The tick click from my feeding tube was interpreted as a puppy on the other side of the wall my bed was on tapping it's claws against the wall to say that everything was going to be okay.

After one night of the puppy it was a gigantic invisible deadly spider walking around the wall, which became three placed on specific parts of my body that would very slowly creep towards my face until I got the nerve up to brush them back to their starting points or mashed on the panic button, sending the poor student nurses I had that night to role play exterminators.

I feel like I sometimes have problems with paranoia, and very occasionally I'll hallucinate always when I'm alone. Definitely not anywhere near the magnitude of what you're describing, but even little parallels on this subject cause me anxiety.

I'm glad I read this because this happens to me every now and then when I spend too much time in my house.

2 comments Add your comment below

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *