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Schizophrenia
diversion sign
tallguywrites
An eleven page chapter from my upcoming book Psychiatric Tales, which will be out from Blank Slate in early 2010. Feel free to point out any errors or make any other comments.

1 schizophrenia



2 schizophrenia

3 schizophrenia 3

4 schizophenia

5 schizophrenia

6 schizophrenia

7 schizophrenia

8 schizophrenia

9 schizophrenia

schizophrenia 10

11 schizophrenia


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I worked for a number of years with local citizens who had been diagnosed with schizophrenia, an outreach (PACT) program in Iowa,USA,  which provided me with great opportunities to forge strong friendships--to be honest, if unprofessional--with my small number of clients, via home visits and helping to structure workable contexts in which to live more fully engaged within a larger community.
I visited with one young man daily in his home as a method of medication management, primarily an issue of what we called "compliance."  The method worked, and his psychosis, over time, retreated significantly;  he became more verbal, his language comprehensible, eventually elegant. 
Here is how he described his experience with schizophrenia:
His world was--and still remained, at that time, to some extent--one-dimensional, as if he were facing a wall, with nothing to attract his peripheral vision, and with no sense of anything at all behind him.  A huge flatness, a wall before him was All.
The wall, however, is embedded with hundreds, at times thousands, of television screens, stacked and side-by-side, like bricks.  Each one is broadcasting a different program (or film?), all are tuned to high volume, and each is of equal interest.  So when I arrived to visit, and shook his hand or squeezed his shoulder, that physical contact unwittingly (an instinct and social habit) cued him to focus, as much as possible and with great effort, on the one screen where I was appearing.  He said that as his trust in me grew over a long period of time, he began to label the show in which I apparently was starring as what most other people call Reality.
Essentially, he concluded, the moderate remission in his symptoms (via daily dosages of more gentle antipsychotic meds and a daily structure that he himself had designed) had led him to forge a new tool, an imagined remote control through which he could choose and change the channel to match the expectations of the surrounding world.  He literally began tuning in to the world, even to the point of adjusting, or muting, the volumes.  He seemed reluctant to hope for the goal of one channel only, the one of shared reality, because the loss of channel surfing would likely prove boring.
I like your aesthetic and especially your honestly kind voice from the page.  Congratulations on some very fine work.
Mike Sinclair

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