A Question For You

For those who have some form of schizophrenia:

What issues/challenges do you face? How do you deal with those challenges?

For caregivers (including friends, family members, psychiatric nurses, psychotherapists, and psychiatrists):

Do you know someone who has some form of sz? What are some of the challenges s/he faces? How does that person deal with those challenges? Also, what challenges as caregivers do you face? How do you deal with those challenges? Has anything you have tried helped the person you care for?

Please, unless you have permission directly from the person you are going to discuss, keep the information about them anonymous.

Thanks…

eb

2 thoughts on “A Question For You

  1. Brian May 26, 2011 at 1:24 pm Reply

    Eb — a close relative has sz (and bp and autism and social anxiety). One of the biggest challenges I see (besides social anxiety) is to much self-focus. One thing that really help me was to focus on the needs of others during my initial days or recovery from bp. I really can’t help but wonder how my relative would be doing if he grabbed a hold of helping others and ran with it.

    I have seen this self-focus problem so much in fact that I often think of mental illness as the selfishness disease.

    • ebw888 May 26, 2011 at 1:56 pm Reply

      Hey, Brian! First, thanks for being the first to pipe up about this post. Hopefully, this will be the icebreaker needed to generate more dialogue here. Speaking only for myself, I can say that I was totally absorbed in what my needs were. So, I think you’re right in the respect that brain diseases can bring out the self-centeredness in us.

      However, I truly believe two things about this self-focus:

      (1) I think it is a defense mechanism brought about by the natural force of wanting to cure the ill (or to solve your own problems, if you will).

      (2) I believe that this self-focus has a biological basis. To say that brain diseases are selfishness diseases tends to place blame on the afflicted, don’t you think? I mean, you wouldn’t blame someone who had cancer for having sluggish days, would you? Kind of the same deal with brain diseases.

      Finally, a word about psychotherapy & its role in helping the afflicted become less egocentric. While it’s important to focus some attention on the self, it’s also important to teach the afflcted how to observe and react appropriately to the needs of others.

      And, one last thing. Perhaps, your desire for your relative to grab “a hold of helping others” and running with it isn’t quite possible right now. It takes a lot of time, energy, and effort to train someone with your loved one’s diseases to be able to focus on doing that, and even then, the end product could only be a fraction of what could be expected of a “normal” person. Instead of focusing on the things your loved one cannot do, what are some of the things s/he can do? There have to be some things your loved one can do. What are some of them?

      Again, thank you for breaking the ice here. I hope this opens up dialogue for others to share their stories.

      Take care and best wishes…

      eb

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