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  • how do you deal with the paranoia?

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    Old 09-06-2004, 10:05 AM   #1
    deflator100
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    Hi, my name's Gemma and I've just moved to London. I suffer from bad paranoia and psychotic symptoms, doctors told me it was schitzoid-affective disorder. The Doctors here have been really distant and don't seem to be able to offer me any treatment other than throwing perscriptions at me. I'm feel isolated and things are getting worse. I can't talk to anyone about it because I'm paranoid that I'll drive them away and then I'll be on my own. I need someone to talk to that has actually suffered from something of this nature because they'll understand that sometimes your thoughts aren't your own. My boyfriend trys to be really supportive but there is only so much he can understand. Please get in touch with me my [ removed ]. Even if you live on the other side of the world, a reply on this board would be great.
    Gemxxx

    Last edited by moderator2; 09-06-2004 at 10:17 AM. Reason: please carefully review the posting rules - no emails.

     
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    Old 09-06-2004, 11:52 AM   #2
    nicolas
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    Staying connected to others, even in the midst of paranoia, is most important. The illness will try to issolate you from others. Don't let it.

    For me paranoia had two components (1) physical fear would buzz through me, (2) my intellect would explain the fear by creating stories of persecution. We can only hope that medication and perhaps a chenge in lifestyle will help with the emotions of fear. I do believe that the intellectual component of paranoia can be defeated with rationality and spiritual labor. Afterall, the delusions are only concepts and ideas. You can prove to yourself that these concepts and ideas that increase your paranoia have no objective basis, are only phantoms of your intellect. Paranoia is always destructive so consider it the enemy.

    If you can't find any one else to give you a reality check (a therapist? a close friend who won't judge you?), you might try writing down all your delusions on a piece of paper and so try to gain objective control by naming them. If you are afraid, for instance, that someone is trying to poison you or that the neighbors are spying on you, at least by writing it down, 'people are trying to poison me,' under the heading DELUSIONS you are already beginning to gain some control, just by knowing what delusions you are up against and knowing that they are delusions, that they are your self-destruvtive subjective interpretation of reality.

    What other psychotic symptoms are you suffering? I will try to help you out as much as I can, Gemma, if you share more specifics of what you are going through, but if you have a rapid increase in psychotic symptoms or if your life is already unmanageble you might consider checking yourself into the hospital for a while.

    Most important keep the faith. Remember God loves you and be compassionate toward yourself. If all else fails pray ... sometimes I pray constantly when my thoughts turn against me, I ignore them and just repeat over and over the Jesus prayer.

    I hope you get better.
    Peace be with you.

    Last edited by nicolas; 09-06-2004 at 03:38 PM.

     
    Old 09-06-2004, 07:28 PM   #3
    Suecat3
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    Hi, Gemma, I'm Sue, and I have schizoaffective disorder, too. I had a really bad break a few years ago, and had horrible problems with paranoia and delusions that no medication could help. I eventually got better, but I still have problems with paranoia sometimes. When that happens, I tell myself that it is just paranoid thinking, it's not real, and then do something to take my mind off of the thoughts. When I was sick, I'd obsess about these feelings and make them even worse. For me, acknowledging the feelings and then moving on works. (Along with Abilify.) Take care.

     
    Old 09-07-2004, 08:05 AM   #4
    deflator100
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    Hi, Thanks for the advice it really helps. I do try really hard to tell myself that these thoughts are not real that I have and it does work but only for a short time. I feel like my brain is going round in circles, I reassure myself, then I feel fine, then the thought pops back into my head and I have to do it all over again. The main thing that happens is that I can't work out what is real and what isn't. I have these situations in my head, sometimes perfectly normal ones, like conversations between people that happen in the future and I can't work out if they are real or not. Sometimes I feel like I can see into the future and all the things I think are going to come true. However much I tell myself that I'm deluded I can't help thinking it again and again. My boyfriend finds it difficult to communicate with me because I'm always somewhere else inside my head. I just want to be here like normal people. I used to be so easy going but now I'm really uptight and obsess about everything. It seems the older I get the worse it becomes. Writing things down does help, but I just want to get out of this endless cycle. I'm starting to think that ending it all is the only option. Maybe I wasn't supposed to be here at all, I feel like I'm broken. I know that sounds terrible and I don't think I'd actually do it these days but I can't stop thinking it.

    Last edited by deflator100; 09-07-2004 at 08:35 AM.

     
    Old 09-07-2004, 04:31 PM   #5
    nicolas
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    It's hard for us, Gemma. We are kind of broken. There's hope though of reordering our lives. Keep sight of your intention, that of being in the world. Be kind to yourself.

    Sometimes our thoughts seem to be manipulated by outside forces ... don't listen to them, don't give them power ... if they won't go away try to drown them out with music or prayer. Don't let the illness issolate you. Are there any groups for people with mental illness you could attend? where you could meet and get encouragement from others who are going through some of the same difficulties you are experiencing?

    When my thoughts get bad I just repeat the Jesus prayer, 'Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on my soul' and it re-commits me to being in reality, not just a passive victim to my troubling thoughts. Asking for help is part of healing. Take it one day at a time, as the saying goes, and be good to yourself.

     
    Old 09-07-2004, 05:52 PM   #6
    Suecat3
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    I know exactly how you feel, Gemma. I like Nicolas' idea of finding a support group; they can be a great help with what you're going through, and just the act of getting out and about can be very therapeutic.. I have to really force myself to socialize most days, but I find that I'm happier and more stable if I have that contact with other people. Isolation truly is an enemy here. As for how hard it is to overcome the delusions, and telling what's real and what's not...I don't know. I had such a hard time with that myself. It seems like only time made that better. Not much comfort, I'm sure. I did have a few people I could bounce ideas off of, to ask if they were real or not; that helped. You have to find people you trust, though.
    Hang in there; I'll be thinking of you...Sue

     
    Old 09-08-2004, 10:29 AM   #7
    deflator100
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    Thanks Sue (and Nicholas!) Posting on here has made me feel a bit less isolated. I'm going through a bad time in my life, I just moved cities and the support I got from my Doctors where I used to live has now gone. Everything seems to have been turned upside down. In London people are less willing to help you, I don't know whether that's just because there are more people who need help or what but I'm finding difficult to cope with finding a job etc because I feel so down all the time. In Leeds, where I came from I was starting get on top of things, for the first time in my life I felt normal, I could live life for it's own sake instead of constantly living inside my head. These days I can't seem to remember how that felt, it's almost as if it never happened, I feel like I'm back to square one.
    Also I don't know anyone, my friends all live in other places and I can only talk to them on the phone or vis email. My boyfriend is the only person I really see and I think he is running out of reassuring things to say to me, I know he just wants me to be happy not just for my sake but for his. I can be a nightmare sometimes when I'm feeling ill.
    I tried to find out about suport groups but all of them happen during the day and I can't afford not to work so that's out of the question. Sue, do you live in the States? Most people on this board do it seems. It doesn't matter it's just nice to talk to someone wherever they live. I just wish I could find some people who I could meet up with and talk to that can share my experiences. Gemxxx

     
    Old 09-08-2004, 05:45 PM   #8
    Suecat3
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    Hi, Gemma...yes, I live in Maine; I just moved here a week ago! Things do seem upside-down for a while after you do something as major as moving. I lived here before for a couple years, though, so I have some friends here, and I like my medical care *much* better here than in upstate NY (where I was from). Still, it is hard to meet someone else with a schizoaffective diagnosis who knows what you mean when you talk about paranoia and delusions and things like that. I think it's wonderful that you're working and that you have a boyfriend. I work part-time and am on disability. As far as boyfriends go, relationship "stuff" like that is very difficult for me still, not that I wouldn't want to meet someone someday! (I think.) Anyway, it' s nice talking to you; I haven't even met anyone else on the boards who shares this diagnosis, much less in real life! Take care...Sue

     
    Old 09-09-2004, 10:23 AM   #9
    Karla
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    Re: how do you deal with the paranoia?

    I am on ablify and it has worked wonders to get rid of my positive and negative paranoid sz symptoms. I think Medication is the only way. I have had no side effects from it. Good luck to you.

     
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