As many of you will be aware, the 10th October is World Mental Health Day. In order to mark the day I have decided to create a blog series to publish in the run up to World Mental Health Day with the help of contributors with lived experience. The series will run over a 6 days, covering a variety of mental health problems. The aim of the series is to remove some of the 'clinical' feel behind the descriptions of mental health problems and humanise it by describing how it feels to those experiencing a mental health problem. Check back to see the next part of the series; Emetophobia.
Schizoaffective disorder is a chronic mental health condition characterised primarily by symptoms of schizophrenia, such as hallucinations or delusions, and symptoms of a mood disorder, such as mania and depression (NAMI).
"Having Schizoaffective Disorder means, even when well, you fear becoming unwell. When you hear a strange noise, instead of simply wondering what it was, you worry it was an auditory hallucination and you'll soon be in the grips of psychosis. If you are simply having a low day, you worry you might spiral into depression. The cocktail of pills give you awful side effects but they are essential to staying well and you just carry on, hoping the strange noise was simply a creaky pipe or that you'll wake up feeling more positive the next day." - Laura Nuttall
"My reality can feel like a huge tangled web, its hard to navigate, its hard to get out, sometimes I except I am stuck, other times I run around trying to find my exit." - Charlie L
"I feel like I am walking on a tightrope just waiting to fall, never knowing if I am going to make it across this time or I am going to plunge down. It's like falling down a deep well that doesn't have a bottom. Sometimes I find it hard to work out what my reality is. Tomorrow doesn't seem like a given, I fear that today is my last day of being 'well' and that tomorrow could spiral into a period of unwellness. " - Anon
Hopefully reading the personal experiences has helped to provide a more human understanding of what Schizoaffective Disorder is, what it means to those who experience it and how it feels.
Sending positive vibes,