mayalaen: (Default)
I have drug-resistant Paranoid Schizophrenia, and I hallucinate with all five (and more) senses. Drug/Treatment-Resistant means that medications like antipsychotics don't stop my hallucinations. In fact, in my case they actually make them worse.

I'm self-aware and high-functioning, but I have psychotic episodes that will last a long time if not treated, the longest being 5 years. When I have psychotic episodes, I tend to switch to Catatonic Schizophrenia, which isn't quite what it sounds like, and if you'd like more information, please click on the link.

I've been on more medications than I can count over the years, but the last time I compiled a list, it was over 40. At times I was on as many as 9 different medications at one time, none of which helped much, and most of which made me worse in some way and caused intolerable side effects such as brain and nerve damage, hypersomnolence, and many others.

So I went in search of alternative treatments, the first of which being something I've been on for 8 years now, which is Wellbutrin/bupropion. It's an SNRI (not an SSRI), and after doing a lot of research and for various reasons (which I'll probably go into more detail about at a later date), I decided it would work, and it did once I found a psych doc willing to prescribe it to me. Keep in mind this is a medication doctors WILL NOT normally prescribe schizophrenics! Yet it has worked wonders on me.

However, it didn't stop me from having breakthrough psychotic episodes -- about 1-2 per year. So about a year ago I started my search again.

For a few months now, I've been using THC gummies/edibles as a treatment for my schizophrenia. THC is a natural antipsychotic, antianxiolytic, and has many good properties. Read This Article to see some studies about it.

I've tried everything from 2.5mg all the way up to 120mg of THC per dose. For reference, the average joint is anywhere from 10-50mg (they may say there's more THC in there, but only 10-50mg is actually ingested).

In that time I've learned some things about how THC effects schizophrenia, anxiety, paranoia, psychosis, hallucinations, and daily life.

First of all and most important to me, there's no obvious nerve damage and so far there hasn't been evidence of brain damage even in studies where ridiculously high amounts of THC was used, including 1000-1200mg of THC per dose given daily.

Second, it's the only thing that has stopped my hallucinations. Within 1.5 hours, even at my worst, THC stops all hallucinations. It brings my paranoia level down to almost none. My cognitive function is greatly improved, as is my concentration and memory. My auditory processing improves, and my social skills improve slightly as well.

My sleep patterns improve, and instead of sleeping anywhere from 1-5 hours a night or not sleeping at all for days at a time, my sleep pattern regulates somewhat and I get a regular 5-6 hours at roughly the same time every night.

My clumsiness improves, my facial expressions improve (schizophrenics tend to lack facial expressions and gestures), and my ability to tolerate noises and humans improves greatly, especially children.

The only problem I'm seeing so far is that I can't stay high 24/7. I own a business, and it takes a lot of my time and mental energy, so I've been taking about 30mg of THC on Saturday night (the first night of my weekend) only. I'm not able to drive or work on this dosage, but it only lasts for about 18 hours, so by the time I need to get errands and household chores done on Monday, I'm completely sober again.

This brings up another issue. Something I didn't expect, but really should have. I've had schizophrenia since I was 2 years old, and I became accustomed to hallucinations very early on. I'm self-aware, and most of the time I can tell the difference between a hallucination and reality. The times I can't, friends and family are awesome enough to let me ask and they'll calmly inform me whether what I'm seeing/hearing/tasting/smelling/feeling is real or not.

But in the 18 or so hours I don't have hallucinations due to the THC in my body, I get used to a lack of hallucinations way too quickly. That means that when it wears off, I have a hard time acclimating to the hallucinations coming back. I'm more jumpy, I "forget" to ignore the noises/voices, and it takes me a day or two to get used to it again. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it is a concern.

In the six months I've been using THC on and off, I haven't had a psychotic episode, and it has twice stopped one from coming on. I had all the symptoms of one coming on (noticed by me, my family, my friends) and yet after one dose, it backed off to normal levels. Previously I had to use 8-week courses of antipsychotics to "reset" my brain and stop the psychotic episode.

The medical community doesn't want to look at THC as an alternative treatment. They won't even consider the fact that antipsychotics aren't the best treatment for schizophrenia. They use medications that cause brain and nerve damage just because they don't know what else to do with us, and they feel the damage is worth the risk.

That means research into alternative treatments suffers, and that means medications aren't being produced that take advantage of these findings. Instead schizophrenics are being heavily medicated until they're drooling. On the other hand, many schizophrenics refuse to take any medication at all because the only things offered to them are more horrible to them than the disease itself, so they're left suffering through whatever symptoms they have to deal with on a daily basis.

Hallucinations don't upset me. I've lived with them all my life. My goal isn't to rid myself of them, and I couldn't care less if someone feels it's not "acceptable" and I should be medicated so they don't have to be exposed to it. My concern is cutting down on psychotic episodes and making my life more stable and easier to manage.

What I've found so far is working, and I hope one day soon the medical community takes the stick out of their ass and does something about making THC or the properties of it into a medical treatment somehow, especially one that doesn't get people high so they can work and play the way they want to.

A Relief

Sep. 30th, 2015 06:50 pm
mayalaen: (Default)
My grandfather was an awful man who treated people like shit his entire life. He died last night, and I’m relieved.

More personal shit below the cut.

Read more... )


A Relief

Sep. 30th, 2015 11:45 am
mayalaen: (Default)
My grandfather was an awful man who treated people like shit his entire life. He died last night, and I’m relieved.

More personal shit below the cut.

Read more... )



Jun. 10th, 2015 10:40 pm
mayalaen: (Default)
I don’t like kids. I don’t wish harm upon them, let’s get that straight!

But I’m schizophrenic, my senses go into overdrive when little things happen, and I don’t have much control over it. Something that without fail sets my sensory issues off? Kids’ squeaky little voices, especially when they scream.

Since there aren’t any child-free restaurants (even sports bars), I know it’s a necessary evil if I feel like eating out, but I calmly and quietly ask the waiter/waitress to seat me where there’s no children (and you wouldn’t believe how many people have given me the stink-eye for this) and I know I have to put up with a certain amount of squeaky voices in the restaurant.

Again, I don’t wish evil on kids. I know they can’t help but have squeaky little voices and they’re excitable. However, that doesn’t mean parents have to be assholes and let them run around screaming, knocking into other people, or just ignore them while they wail at the table.

Tonight I sat there with a family behind me (the waitress ignored my request). Father, mother, and a 3 or 4-year old girl. Not only did the little girl scream at the top of her lungs many, many times throughout her dinner, but the father SCREAMED ALONG WITH HER as if he thought it was funny.

I’m not fucking kidding. He actually whined and screamed, then would laugh. She’d start up again, he’d start up, and the two would laugh at each other and start all over again.

My heart was racing, I had tunnel vision, was sweating, and my skin got oversensitized. Even the air around me hurt my skin. They didn’t come in until I was halfway through my meal, so I figured I’d just hurry up and eat, shove it down my throat, then get the hell outta there.

But the waitress took forever to bring me the check, so I sat there trying not to freak the fuck out and run through the place screaming and crying. The idea of getting in trouble for running out on the check (or the waitress THINKING I was doing that) is enough for yet another anxiety attack.

I’d like to know what parents are thinking when they do this. I don’t expect everyone to cater to me. I’m schizophrenic. Big woop. Poor me. Blah, blah. But no one in that restaurant was enjoying the screaming. Does something change inside parents’ heads? Like some switch that says ‘my kid can do this because she’s cute and everyone will think it’s adorable’?!?

I don’t go out very often because of this. I go out late at night on weekday nights so I miss most of the families. And if I’m already having sensory issues, I don’t even think about going out to eat. But I was doing okay tonight. Until the screaming kid, I was having a good time.

What the fuck is wrong with people?!

I’m still oversensitized. It’ll last all night, and my hallucinations will ramp up for the night. So thank you, anonymous asshole father who thought his kid was the cutest thing ever. I won’t sleep tonight, I’ll have raging hallucinations all night, my skin will hurt every time a little bit of air runs across my skin, my ears will be sore with even small noises, even mild light will hurt my eyes, and my heart will still race for a while, but that’s okay, because you got to have fun eating at a restaurant with your kid.

mayalaen: (Default)
What I Learned From My Mom: How to be a strong, independent person who lives for herself, not others, but doesn’t have to bowl everyone else down to be that person, taking others into consideration without letting them walk all over you.

What I Learned From My Dad: Don’t trust everyone, because they’ll tell you what you wanna hear, but they won’t follow through, and it’ll hurt if you believe them, over and over again, even if they’re your dad and say love you.

What I Learned From Myself: I’m stronger than I thought I was.

What I’d Tell My Younger Self: Stop believing him. It hurts every time, and he never does end up following through no matter how many times people tell you he’s changed. He’s not the only one who will do this to you, so learn now.

What I’d Tell a Teenager if They Asked About Life: Be yourself, but don’t hurt others in the process. Don’t let them walk all over you, but don’t be an asshole while you do it. Life is hard, but things that seem awful, like they’re going to kill you? They don’t. You get stronger because of them. Live your life in such a way that, when you’re old and surrounded by those you love, you can look back and say you’re proud of how you handled the good and the bad shit. Everybody fucks up. It’s how you handle your fuckups that makes you who you are and either draws people to you or pushes them away.

mayalaen: (Default)

May 29, 2015
Question 25. What professional and non-professional writers do you admire?

I’m a big fan of Stephen King. I love that he sucks you into the character’s headspace faster than anyone else I’ve ever read. And he has this casual way of writing, like he’s just sitting back, drinking his tea, and dragging you through all of his stories without even lifting a finger while you get scared, surprised, you’re bleeding, crying, and then your favorite character dies right before your eyes, all while he’s smirking at you. Yeah, I like Stephen King’s writing.

Michael Crichton is another favorite, not because his books are exciting (which they are), but because he did so much research included all this technical shit and background that you almost want to skip over, but it’s written in such a way that you end up reading it anyway. And I don’t know how he did it. And his stories are always interesting.

Dean Koontz is another favorite, but mostly because of Intensity. That book AND movie? Both awesome. Oh, and John C. McGinley played the hell outta Edgeler Foreman Vess.

As far as non-professional writers, I really like Xanthe. Pretty much anything she writes, I’m on board to read it. I don’t care what fandom or what plot. I’m there.

There’s also morganoconner (SPN), strangenessandcharm (SPN), Raven (X-Files), LitGal (multiple), Lazulikat (AtS/BtVS), Kassandra (X-Files), Lorelei (X-Files), Mort (X-Files), sevenfists (SPN), speranza (SGA), scyllaya (SPN), and so many, many more! There are plenty of writers in multiple fandoms that I’ll read anything they write.

And I have to mention Arete214 because she’s written me some kick-ass fic, and also majesticduxk because I get sucked into those fics so hard that I end up reading them straight through without a break, and deadmockingbirds because I’ve recently started reading those fics and got sucked in as well.

mayalaen: (Default)

All the guys in my shop are scared of bugs, spiders, and small reptiles. I own a tattoo shop. Do you have any idea how hilarious it is to hear one of those big, tattooed, pierced, gun-toting, growly guys scream like a girl and yell for me (a chick) to come kill the big, bad, quarter-sized spider while they stand outside their room, shifting from foot to foot as if it’ll attack if they stand still for more than two seconds?!

About Me

Maya (37 & AroPan)
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supernatural - ats/btvs
sga - wentworth - x-files

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