PSA

ya’ll

can we PLEASE stop referring to people with schizophrenia (or related illnesses) as ‘schizophrenic’. 

We are not an illness but rather people who have an illness.

only people who have schizophrenia (or related illnesses) can say ‘schizophrenic’ when referring to themselves and their illness. NO ONE ELSE

this also goes for ‘psychotic’. Please say ‘has/have a psychosis illness/disorder’. I personally refer to myself as psychotic often but I am the person that has the disorder so I am allowed to refer to myself as such. 

you would not refer to someone who has cancer as cancerous.

we are people with an illness NOT the illness itself. 

Thanks

people with schizophrenia and why we're angry

Hi, I’m Emmett and I’ve had schizophrenia since I was a toddler with early onset schizophrenia. I’m here to tell you why we’re angry and scared. Here are some reasons:

stigma

  •    Most people with schizophrenia are demonized and treated like we’re going to kill you
  • We’re told that we should be locked up and won’t be able to function in society
  • In the media we’re portrayed as sadistic and evil
  • A large number of people believe that schizophrenia is a character flaw
  • People believe that schizophrenia develops quickly and suddenly

being treated like we’re a problem for other people

  • Most articles about loved ones with schizophrenia are titled things like “how to deal with someone with schizophrenia” and it doesn’t feel to great to know that people are “dealing with you”

being in more danger than you think that we put you in

  • Multiple people have had the police called to help them with meds and gotten shot
  • If I tell someone I have schizophrenia they tell me that they didn’t suspect it because I haven’t tried to hurt them
  • We’re more likely to kill ourselves than we are to kill you

“fangirls”

  • There are tons of fanfictions romanticizing schizophrenia and in some cases what they’re calling schizophrenia is actually other disorders or made up disorders
  • There are so many youtube videos that are titled things like “schizo!{insert anime boy} MEP”
  • There’s just a lot of really gross sexualized schizophrenia in fanfictions and anime stuff in general

getting confused with other mental illnesses

  • 85 percent of the population recognize schizophrenia as a mental illness but only 25 percent of the population are familiar with what it actually is and how it affects people’s lives
  • 64 percent of people think that schizophrenia includes split personalities  

having fucking schizophrenia

  • paranoia
  • hallucinations
  • delusions
  • depression
  • confusion
  • not being able to remember things or form sentences

Thanks for your time, if this didn’t clear up why we’re mad I don’t know what to tell you.

Every so often I’ll see a post on here with ‘creepy’ art - no name of artist, except just a caption like “art by schizophrenic/psychotic/etc person who was in a mental hospital”, and stripping mentally ill artists down to just our mental illnesses as a shock factor

If someone ever did that to me and used my art in such a way to appease to NTs, I don’t care if I’m fucking dead I’m coming for you you little shits. I’ll claw my way out of my grave and my psychotic, zombie ass will haunt you forever and I’ll paint the word ‘ableist’ in red blood all over your walls just like the ghosts in movies

Hey, something i kind of thought was important to share (coming from a psychotic person myself) 

There is a big impact on how you tell someone who experiences delusions/hallucinations that what they are experiencing isnt real.

I’m going to elaborate on this a bit, these things are very much real to us, we experience these things as if they were real life occurences, they just arent real to other people. 

So when trying to help someone dealing with these things cope, saying "they arent real, you’re being delusional, you have to realize they arent real” makes us feel terrible or like we are fucked up or should be able to help it in some way 

A proper way to help friends or family cope with these things is to a knowledge that what they are experiencing is real to them, and reassure them that what they are seeing/hearing/feeling/ will not hurt them 

That helps us so much more and makes us feel a lot more valid, and it’s super important that people understand this

That Word Doesn't Mean What You Think It Means: Psycho/Psychotic

I have heard the word “psycho” used to describe a number of people. Ex-girlfriends, serial killers, people with too many cats. (Who are you kidding? There’s no such thing as too many cats!) Don’t you people know that using “psycho” as an insult is really, incredibly gross? Listen, your ex probably isn’t psychotic at all. I know she dumped your full bottle of mountain dew on your Xbox One, and that was a sad moment and you cried about it for years, but that’s not the defintion of psychosis. (PC gaming is superior anyway, you fake nerd boy. She did you a fucking favor.)* I don’t know, if I was dating someone who regularly used ableist slurs, I might dump soda on their console too.

*I don’t actually think PC gaming is superior to console gaming. That was a joke.

Psycho: What everyone seems to think it means.

  1. That person I dated who called me 18 times a day.
  2. That guy who shot up a movie theatre.
  3. A criminal
  4. Someone who makes me uncomfortable.

Those definitions are ableist. Also, they’re inaccurate. Incredibly so.

To be honest, I’d advise against calling anyone a “psycho.” A “psycho” is indeed someone who experiences psychosis, but you probably shouldn’t call someone a “psycho” anyway. Call them a person. They are a person who experiences psychosis, and it’s not a pleasant experience. Don’t define a person by their disorder. They are not an extension of their disorder. They are a person who happens to experience psychosis.

“Okay, that’s cool, Mea. But what is psychosis? What do you mean the 52nd text from this creep isn’t psychosis?”

Psychosis is defined by abormalities in one or more of the following five domains: delusions, hallucinations, disorganized thinking, disorganized or abnormal motot behavior (including catatonia), and negative symptoms.

Delusions are fixed beliefs that are not amenable to change in the light of conflicting evidence. Their content may include a variety of themes (e.g., persecutory, referential, somatic, religious, grandiose). Persecutory delusions (i.e., belief that one is going to be harmed, harassed, and so foth by an individual, organization, or other group) are most common. Referential delusions (i.e., belief that certain gestures, comments, environmental cues, and so forth are directed at oneself) are also common. Grandiose delusions (i.e., when an individual belives that he or she has exceptional abilities, wealth, or fame) and erotomanic delusions (i.e., when an individual believes falsely that another person is in love with him or her) are also seen. Nihilistic delusions involve the conviction  that a major catostrophe will occur, and somatic delusions focus on preoccupations regarding health and organ functioning.

Hallucinations are perception-like experiences that occur without an exernal stimulus. They are vivid and clear, with the full force and impact of normal perceptions, and not under voluntary control. They may occur in any sensory modality, but auditory hallucinations are the most common in schizophrenia and related disorders. Auditory hallucinations are usually experiences as voices, whether familiar or unfamiliar, that are perceived as distinct from the individual’s own thoughts. The hallucinations must occur in the context of a clear sensorium; those that occur while falling asleep (hypnagogie) or waking up (hypnopompic) are considered between the range of normal experience.

Disorganized thinking is typically inferred from the individual’s speech. The individual may switch from one topic to another (derailment or loose associations). Answers to questions may be obliquely related or completely unrelated (tangentiality). Rarely, speech may be so severely disorganized that it is nearly incomprehensible and resembles receptive aphasia in its linguistic disorganization (incoherence). Because milidy disorganized speech is commin and nonspecific, the symptom must be severe enough to substantially impair effective communication.

Disorganized or abnormal motor behavior may manifest itself in a variety of ways, ranging from childlike “silliness” to unpredeictable agitation. Problems may be noted in any form of foal-directed behavior, leading to difficulties in performing activities of daily living.

Negative symptoms described in the DSM in regards to psychosis include diminised emotional expression, decrease in motivated self-initiated purposeful activities, diminished speech output, and decreased ability to experience pleasure.

-

Not once in any of this rambling does it mention a person who calls you too often, who ruined your Xbox, or who was remotely violent at all. Psychosis does not make someone violent. It alters how they experience reality. I don’t doubt there are people who are indeed violent and also have a psychotic disorder, but there are also people who are violent and have green eyes. I would also like to make a gentle reminder that mentally ill people are more likely to be abused than they are to be abusers themselves.

So next time you try to call someone a “psycho,” think about what you’re actually saying. What statement are you making to those who are truly experiencing psychosis? It’s a slur. Stop using it.