I have chronic depression, generalised anxiety disorder, OCD, and some psychotic tendencies (according to my doctor and the several psychiatrists I've seen). I'm being treated with lexapro for the depression and anxiety, as well as olanzapine for my psychotic symptoms and as a general mood stabiliser (5mg daily). I had a mental breakdown when I was 19 due to drug abuse, and a severe depressive episode when I was 21 due to alcohol use.
Recently, I tried to come off the olanzapine, an attempt that was sanctioned by my doctor. I got down from 10mg daily to 2.5mg in the space of three months, before my psychotic symptoms returned. These involve the perception of faces in inanimate surfaces (although I don't actually see them, I just get the impression I do) and the occasional irrational thought (my food being poisoned, even though I know this is certainly not true).
Now, I have always had a fear of developing schizophrenia. It is true that I am experiencing many of the negative symptoms attributed to the illness: general apathy, inability to express joy, anhedonia, extreme social withdrawal etc. But I do not hear voices, I don't think I'm the messiah or the devil, I don't feel insects crawling underneath my skin etc. I do have what are termed "intrusive thoughts", which is characteristic of OCD.
I'm due to see a psychiatrist within the next few weeks to make an official diagnosis, but my doctor who referred me did not think I had schizophrenia. Neither did the one I saw before, or any of the psychiatrists I've seen previously.
Nontheless, in your opinion, should I be concerned about having schizophrenia? I'm not going to lie, that could really finish me off. It's been damn hard getting this far, and I'm not sure I could handle such a diagnosis.
Social perceptions on things always make people feel worse. Schizophrenia seems to be the worst ailment on the face of the earth.
I see the faces, they are everywhere actually, alot of people who are not schizophrenic also see them so take heart bro. It seems a far cry to say that they happen by accident, not that they were intended although could be who knows, but they elude to some type of organization of things whether or not it's intended or just the way that things are by nature, possibly both.
There are alot of secrets right in front of our faces actually. I for one cannot wait to understand what it's all actually made of.
Drugs don't cause schizophrenia by the way, you can only be a schizophrenic who has taken drugs. They would make us look pretty tasty though to some, imagine nearly completely oblivious beings such as ourselves on drugs, you could get them to believe and do almost anything.
Apathy, expressing joy, anhedonia, social withdrawal, are not symptoms of anything. When things are better and kinder and safer and healthier then I will not have apathy and I will express much joy and I will hit the social scene and I have an ability to have pleasure.
How could people have that much gall as to say anhedonia is a symptom of anything within our little confines, our little painful confines down here. Mostly when Im actually safe and have good caring conversations with people. Ill have the ability to experience pleasure when life is more than me being herded into a slaughterhouse and when things are fair on me.
There are your symptoms doc. Your little small minded imaginary symptoms. Yes, doctors should work on their discernment a bit, then they could make some kind've sense.