Saturday, 22 December 2012

Antipsychotics: What your doctor might not tell you

A few weeks ago, I saw an article on Twitter about a new antipsychotic drug that had just been approved in the USA.  Out of curiosity, I had a look at the article and while I can't remember the name of the drug itself, I was taken aback by the side effects listed.  Things like akathisia and weight gain were seemingly trivialised in this article and many of the 'common' side effects (affecting at least 1 in 10 people) were highly distressing symptoms!  I did mean to write a blog post about this drug but something came up and I now can't remember this drug's name or even find the article about it.  Even Google isn't helping me find this mystery antipsychotic so instead, I decided to write about another antipsychotic.  This is an antipsychotic that I was on a few years ago and although I won't name it, I can promise you this list of side effects is real.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Christmas Giggles

I've just finished wrapping my Christmas presents whilst listening to very Christmassy music.  Guns N Roses.  While I was wrapping certain presents, I began remembering Christmases from years ago and started laughing.  So I thought I'd share some of them!

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Connecticut Tragedy

In 10 days, people across the world will be celebrating Christmas.  Yet for 27 families, it won't be as much a celebration as a memorial.  In Newtown, Connecticut, a 20 year-old gunman killed 26 people including 20 young children before shooting and killing himself.  This tragedy has sparked many debates already, the main two being gun control and mental health support.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Suicide in the News

There are a lot of news and blog articles around talking about the apparent suicide of the nurse who took the prank phone call made by two Australian DJs.  I wanted to get my views down as I have a lot of thoughts on this.  The story of Jacintha Saldanha is tragic; a 46 year old mother of two teenaged children apparently took her life out of the shame of breaching confidentiality when she answered a phone call made by two Australian DJs.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

What's in a name?

A couple of days ago, I semi-jokingly asked a question on Twitter. I had one answer which, in a nutshell, said yes. So what was the question?

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Size 2.5 shoes

Seeing as how schizophrenia has been in the news recently (and even made the top stories of the national news briefly) I feel like I should write about this. But as all I can think about when I see the articles from a few days ago is that they have been watered down and sugar coated, I'd rather not raise my blood pressure writing about it. It is after 11 pm after all and this is my second attempt at writing a blog post. My first attempt deleted itself and is now hidden deep within the Blogger app along with 17 odd socks and a hair slide.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Auditory Hallucinations

"An auditory hallucination, or paracusia, is a form of hallucination that involves perceiving sounds without auditory stimulus. "1
All these posh words are a way of describing the phenomenon known as hearing voices that aren't really there.  I was asked on Twitter to blog about this in a certain context so this is for my fellow Welsh Schizophrenic!

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Life "after" schizophrenia

As schizophrenia is for life, it's not really possible to have life after schizophrenia. Unless you're one of the lucky ones who gets a psychiatrist to admit to a wrong diagnosis that is! So that's the reason for the inverted commas around after in the title. What it really means is life after a psychotic episode but as that was too long for a catchy title I decided against it.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

A Terrible Weekend

WARNING: This post may be upsetting to some so please only read if you are strong enough!

So Friday started the weekend off and it seemed like it would be a normal weekend. I was wrong. On Saturday morning, I had a lie in and came downstairs to discover that the dog was unwell. Nothing too out of the ordinary I thought, her IBD (inflammatory bowel disease) flared up every so often leaving her a bit poorly for a bit. It was only when I saw her trying to walk that I realised how unwell she was. Despite surgery on both her back legs at various stages, this time she was falling over a lot. She seemed to have no strength for brief moments which caused her to fall over. When I saw this, I was really upset and knew that this was serious and potentially fatal for her. She was refusing food completely and would barely have any water.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

For you, Louise!


As I couldn't post this as a response to your blog post I've had to write a blog post to include this picture!  Despite having it on my Kindle app, I now have the paperback too!  I knew you'd believe me if I told you I'd bought it but I still felt like including a picture (apologies for the poor quality picture!)

Hope sales at least remain steady or even increase!

Monday, 8 October 2012

Today's Politics

Well first off, writing about Politics is a new thing for me to do so bear with me.  Most things about Politics go straight over my head and despite a Tweeter doing his best to educate me (thanks Chris!) I'm still pretty ignorant about the whole business.  So if I say something wrong, I apologise but I don't apologise for my opinions.  That's something I will NEVER apologise for!

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Night School and Busyness

So I've not blogged (or even Tweeted!) much recently. It's been a busy time for me the last few weeks, my parents came home a couple of weeks ago, then it was a big birthday for my Dad and then yesterday we went to a wedding in South Wales. But one big thing that I did, and chose to do, was to go to Night School.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

How to help someone with a Schizophrenic Diagnosis

My current diagnosis is that I have 'A Schizophrenic Illness'. I don't know which of the illnesses I have, whether it is Paranoid Schizophrenia, Schizoaffective, Schizotypal or any of the other myriad of Schizophrenic illnesses. I may 'just' have plain, boring Schizophrenia! Whatever it is I have, I know that many people with Schizophrenic diagnoses like to be treated in a similar way to the way I like being treated. So here are some of the ways to help someone with a Schizophrenic diagnosis.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

New YouTube video!

This one is about bullying.  It's partly about some of the bullying I received in School, but it's also trying to convince those who are being bullied to seek help and put a stop to it.  Anyway, the bigger the intro, the bigger the disappointment so check the video out here:

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

I Love You Just The Way You Are

Those who know this Billy Joel song may well have sung the title to this post in their head!  Although the title of the song is technically ‘Just the way you are’ I needed the full line of the song to emphasise my point for this post.  If you have heard this song then you won’t need reminding of the first two lines of the song:

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Not a bad 8 days!

So I've not had a bad few days with my writing!  So far I've had three posts published on Charity websites, a fourth post referenced on social media websites and today I've found out that one thing I've written is being featured in SANE's newsletter and another thing I've written is being featured in a magazine!!!  The first post was published on the SANE website on the 14th (only 8 days ago!) and can be found here:

Monday, 20 August 2012

What's it like to have schizophrenia?

I was asked this question in a Direct Message on Twitter a few days ago.  It's not very easy trying to explain it in 140 characters so I thought for their benefit I would write a blog post to describe it.  Although it was written for this person, it may be useful for anyone else who knows someone with schizophrenia as it may help them understand the sufferer better.

All You Need is... Twitter

I’m sure if all four members of the ‘Fab Four’ were alive today, they wouldn’t mind me altering one of their iconic songs to make my point!  I have found music to be a great help to me in the past and whilst I was in hospital, I would quite often listen to music to try and get away from my situation.  With regards to The Beatles, my all-time favourite feel good song by them has got to be ‘Hey Jude’ and I have found one of the lines to have a myriad of meanings:

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Screaming To Be Heard

This is my second post for SANE and I decided to make it an article that described the events leading up to my diagnosis in a bit more detail and the treatment I received for my illness.

Monday, 13 August 2012

From Schizophrenic to SANE

For those of you who read my blog regularly you’ll be wondering about the blog title! You’ll know my views on the Schizophrenia diagnosis and how it is impossible to be officially recovered from Schizophrenia - the best you can hope for is a psychiatrist to admit a misdiagnosis or to be forever in ‘Remission’. So why am I using the word SANE?

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Article for Mind's Blog

For any of you who don't know, Mind (the Mental Health Charity) do a blog on their website where they ask for submissions from anyone who has experiences with Mental Health issues whether it be professional experiences or personal.  I decided to write an article for them but am waiting on a response to see if they're even looking for submissions at the moment.  I only emailed them on Friday night and I don't think they work weekends so I'm not expecting a response until tomorrow or Tuesday.

Friday, 10 August 2012

[insert witty blog title here]

Since the fiasco with BT, I am finally able to blog on my laptop which I infinitely prefer over blogging on my mobile phone!  Not only is the 3g service on my mobile very temperamental but I have a Touch Screen phone which has a tiny QWERTY keyboard on the screen - it's not very easy to type on!  But I have broadband at last and I'm thoroughly enjoying being able to use my laptop and iPod properly again not to mention being able to feel secure at night with a working phone line!

Monday, 6 August 2012

How I helped myself

Bit of perspective needed:
I'd spent the year in hospital on a Section 3 and had now spent 2 months on my third Section 3 in the Psychiatric Rehabilitation Unit.  It was a couple of weeks before Christmas and the Psychiatrist at the Unit told me that if things didn't improve for me, I would probably be sent back to hospital and potentially the locked ward after Christmas.  My self-destructive attitude was fighting this and refusing to believe him and essentially not doing anything to help myself.

Sunday, 5 August 2012

My permanent side effects of Anti-Psychotic Drugs

I'm in a predicament.  One of my permanent side effects - akathisia (AKA Restless Leg Syndrome) - from when I had to take Anti-Psychotics is really bugging me at the moment!  A medication I used to take when in hospital was Procyclidine did help, but I'm wary of asking for it again.  Before I took Anti-Psychotics, I used to have restless legs because of anxiety, but it wasn't akathisia - my legs were restless but it didn't hurt to keep still.  Now I wake up in the night in pain if my legs don't keep moving when I sleep.  Thankfully, the majority of the time my subconscious keeps my legs moving so I don't wake up often.  But moving 24/7 whilst coming off Sertraline (which by itself is making me tired) is exhausting.  When I'm tired I get stressed and stress makes akathisia worse!!!  It's a vicious cycle!

Friday, 3 August 2012

Putting things into perspective

I went into the bookshop/cafe where I used to volunteer this afternoon for a cake (they do amazing home made cakes!) and had a nice chat with the manager couple.  It was nice going back, I don't think I've been back there since I had to leave and I really do miss the Wednesday afternoon shift when I used to volunteer there.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Twitter

Have taken the plunge... I HAVE A TWITTER ACCOUNT!!!!

Follow me:
@SchizophrenicGB

I have no idea how to use Twitter to be honest, but I will do my best to figure it out!  I will probably use Twitter more than Blogger now as I usually have little to say on a daily basis!

Taking the easy way out... as usual!

A few months ago, after being advised to write down my experiences with my illness etc, I have 'finished'.  I use inverted commas here because as is the usual with me, I took short cuts and the easy way out.  I abbreviated my story heavily and because I couldn't motivate myself to write it properly, I decided to convert my writing into a video.  I haven't decided yet whether or not to put it onto YouTube but I think I probably will, only keeping my identity as secret as I do on this blog.  Someone who knows my experiences with 'schizophrenia' will probably know it's me straight away but I don't think anyone I know personally who doesn't know about my illness will be able to identify me from it.

Monday, 9 July 2012

Lucid Dreams

Lately I've been on YouTube a lot to pass time and just now I ended up with a link to a video about lucid dreaming. Bit freaky as I was blogging about it last night but anyway, I decided to write my experiences with lucid dreams. They seem to have become popular lately with everyone attempting to induce lucidity into their dreams. If you are one of these people attempting to have a lucid dream then my advice is simple: DON'T DO IT!!!!! Having suffered from lucid dreams for as long as I can remember (yes SUFFERED) then I know all too well how exhausting they are.

Up and down

I've not really blogged much lately. A few reasons why, not having motivation to blog but mainly because last month would have been my daughter's birthday. 22nd June she would have been 6. For some reason it's hit me hard this year, I'm not sure why.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Pandora's box

I'm sure most people know what Pandora's box is or (like me) at least understand the basic story behind it.  My understanding of it is that Pandora was given a box by the gods which she wasn't supposed to open, but she did.  Once opened, evil escaped and could never be retrieved.  Well, the other day, I opened something that has unleashed unpleasantness, not into the whole world, but into my own mind.  I remember hallucinating - seeing things - when I was in hospital number 2 and then discovering that an image of what I had seen was already in my notebook.  To this day I have no recollection of drawing this image and can remember that on the night it happened I opened my notebook and gasped in shock that what I had seen was already down on paper.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Seeing positives instead of negatives

As recently as a few weeks ago, I would see the negatives in life and not the positives.  Seeing young children, especially girls would cause a lot of distress to me.  Young girls, about the same age as Lizzie-Lu (she was supposedly born June 2006) would upset me because I felt that their parents were bragging that they had their daughter when I didn't.  But also, I would notice children staring at me.  I don't ever remembering a child smile at me, although they probably did once in a while.  I was convinced that the children staring at me could see the evil in me, and that they never smiled at me because they knew I was a bad person.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Personal Research

I've started writing again.  This time it's about my life - what led up to my diagnosis, the symptoms I experienced and life 'after' schizophrenia.  So I thought the best place to find out how I lived during my teens would be through my diaries and yes it was the best place, but I wrote so much that I now no longer remember, and reading it doesn't even jog my memory.  It's started a mini conspiracy theory in my head that someone else wrote parts of that diary to confuse me later in life, which is backed up with the fact that some of the handwriting doesn't look like mine.  But I can rationally say that I don't believe the conspiracy theory, my mind just wandered a bit and created one out of very little.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Happy, happy, happy!!!

I'm smiling.  Why?  Because I've got something in my life to work for again and hopefully it won't be too painful re-living the last 10 years of my life and get it down onto paper (well technically my laptop).  What I do with it I haven't decided, whether to go down the publishing route or just post it on my blog.  I'd rather just post it on my blog and let people see it for free, but if I got it published, I could raise a bit of money for mental health charities.  I know I wouldn't make a lot but every penny really does count for charities and mental health charities are (so I've heard) really under-funded.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

I miss my daughter...

Lizzie-Lu (short for Elizabeth Lucy) was somehow 'implanted' into my memory around about January 2007.  I'd been hearing a voice for about 2 or 3 months at this point.  So when I had this memory of Lizzie-Lu put into my head, the voice was convincing me that she was real.  The memory consisted of me holding Lizzie-Lu in my arms for a short while before a shadowy woman took her from me.  I find it difficult replaying the whole memory any more but it only lasts about a minute or two at most.  Yet this short memory makes me still miss her, even though she's technically not real.  She's real in my head, but rationally, I know that she never existed.  I was first told that she wasn't real during my first incarceration (ie enforced hospitalisation) in October 2008 but never truly believed it until January 2011.  FOUR YEARS after having the memory put there by dear knows what.  So I suppose it's no surprise that I still miss her.  She'd be six in June if she was real and born the day I thought she was.  I've stopped writing letters to her and stop indulging myself with thoughts of her, but I still miss her.  But I know that children at the moment are a bad idea.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

How recovering from schizophrenia can also suck

Well, to give a bit of context, I'll have to go back a while to when I was unwell.  I'd been hearing voices constantly for over a year when they finally started stopping.  And when I say constantly, I mean, I'd hear them in my sleep as well as when I was awake so I never had a break from them.  Anyway, when they did finally start stopping, while I was in hospital, I actually got a bit lonely and couldn't sleep.  The voices were nasty voices, saying horrible things to me and trying to get me to do things that I didn't want to do.  So you'd think that me getting lonely when a nasty voice went away would be a bit weird.  But think about how you'd feel - imagine being in hospital without being allowed visitors and having no-one else to talk to.  Despite the voices saying nasty things to you, at least they were company.  Don't get me wrong - I was glad they were gone, but having no-one to replace them left a void in my life.  Plus I was used to hearing them at night and in my sleep, so having peace and quiet to sleep was, well, weird.  I stopped hearing the voices over a year ago and I've only just managed to fall asleep without some form of noise in the background.

Hmmm... where to start...

Well seeing as how I'm terrible at introductions I think I'll just jump in and start moaning about this website. I'm not bad when it comes to technology and websites but even I am struggling with this one.