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Questions about avolition

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Questions about avolition

Postby Rockin1980 » Fri Jul 08, 2016 1:20 pm

I just found out about Avolition the other day. Had never heard about it before but I think I suffer from it.

I'm a 36 year old man. I haven't had a job in almost a year, I'm broke, can barely afford food and have been relying on my parents for help. Almost every job I've had in life I sort of stumbled upon or they were offered by a friend or acquaintance. I never really pursued anything in my life and have spent long periods doing nothing. I was also a poor student in high school, especially in Math. In college I did better because I majored in Journalism and I've always been good with words, concepts, structure and languages.

I currently spent my days in my sofa, alone, reading stuff online or watching movies and tv shows. I do feel guilty about it...I do feel angry sad and guilty but on most days those feelings are very mild. I don't spend my days crying or breaking stuff. It's a very understated sadness due to loneliness and feeling worthless. Suicidal thoughts are constantly in my mind because I look outside and I don't see how I fit. I don't see a place for me in the world.

I also talk by myself. Often times, when I'm feeling overwhelmed with thoughts, I feel the need to pretend someone is in front of me (it could be my parents, a friend or a therapist) and I "role play" a conversation. I've been doing this for ages, since I was in my early 20's. I don't hear another voice and I don't see anybody in front of me: I role play, as if I was an actor. I would much rather write these thoughts down but, for some reason, I don't have the urge to write. I have the urge to talk, to vocalise these thoughts.

I read that avolition is a symptom of schizophrenics but I've never been diagnosed as such. Could one have avolition without being schizophrenic? I've been worried recently that I might be a schizoid but I don't suffer any sort of speech problems and I do care very much if someone compliments or criticises me so I'm not sure about being a schizoid anymore but the avolition thing is spot on.

Could one have avolition as a side-effect of clinical depression without being schizophrenic?
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Re: Questions about avolition

Postby Auxiliary11 » Thu Aug 18, 2016 10:54 pm

Rockin1980 wrote:I currently spent my days in my sofa, alone, reading stuff online or watching movies and tv shows. I do feel guilty about it...I do feel angry sad and guilty but on most days those feelings are very mild. I don't spend my days crying or breaking stuff. It's a very understated sadness due to loneliness and feeling worthless. Suicidal thoughts are constantly in my mind because I look outside and I don't see how I fit. I don't see a place for me in the world.


I'm the same; for a while I've suspected I've had some negative symptoms going on, however since then I've found other explanations.

Apathy criteria:

(i) Diminished goal-directed behavior:
 (a) lack of effort,
 (b) dependency on others to structure activity.
(ii) Diminished goal-directed cognition:
 (a) lack of interest in learning new things or in new experiences,
 (b) lack of concern about one’s personal problems.
(iii) Diminished emotion:
 (a) unchanging affect,
 (b) lack of emotional responsivity to positive or negative events.

Suffering from pronounced apathy myself, I know the feeling (or lack of!). I've pinned mine down to alcohol overuse, and autism/aspergers, which is known to be a cause of apathy. SCZ isn't the only thing that can cause this. What did you score on this? https://psychology-tools.com/autism-spectrum-quotient/

Rockin1980 wrote:I also talk by myself. Often times, when I'm feeling overwhelmed with thoughts, I feel the need to pretend someone is in front of me (it could be my parents, a friend or a therapist) and I "role play" a conversation. I've been doing this for ages, since I was in my early 20's.


Maladaptive Daydreaming? I really don't know why people think talking to yourself is a symptom of SCZ. Hearing and responding to voices however? Yes, that's definitely a symptom, I think we can all agree on that!

Rockin1980 wrote:Could one have avolition as a side-effect of clinical depression without being schizophrenic?


People with clinical depression have severe apathy, but not avolition. True avolition is only ever a symptom of SCZ, but how do you differ severe apathy from true avolition?

Someone with avolition wants to do something, but is literally unable to, but the apathetic individual doesn't want to do anything. The thing is, many people have trouble initiating activities, but that doesn't necessarily indicate avolition. Imagine how many people would be Dx.ed with SCZ if that was the case!

I'll read your post, and all I can say to you is this: If you're literally unable to do anything, it may be avolition, but if you just have a hard time doing stuff, apathy is the better fit, which can be a symptom of many things: autism/aspergers being one of them.

Hope this helped somehow.
self dx. pdd-nos (level 1); covert narcissism w/ avoidant traits; social phobia; inertia.

INFP; dismissive/fearful-avoidant & highly sensitive person

"Life, a sexually transmitted, terminal disease."
"you built up a world of magic, because your real life is tragic"
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Re: Questions about avolition

Postby Bill4315 » Wed Oct 12, 2016 6:42 am

I hear you. It's been a problem for me all my life except for brief periods of time.
After 49 years I finally had to concede to myself that I MUST set smaller goals for myself, like showering twice a week instead of daily, brushing my teeth a couple of times per week and so forth.
My therapist was helpful in getting me to set small goals instead of none at all. My anti-depressant Doesn't help with my avolition but does improve my mood - a lot.
It sounds like you are way to hung up on being normal. i was for a long time but can finally accept it. Maybe you can help people out on sights like this, I can tell you are good at expressing yourself. Hope this helps.
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