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Am I Schizoid? Please hear me out - am at a loss

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Am I Schizoid? Please hear me out - am at a loss

Postby ataloss123 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:11 pm

Okay so this is going to be a long post, potentially quite rambly as my head is all over the place at the minute. I understand there are a lot of questions like mine on this forum, and realistically my question is no more special than anyone else's but I'm being torn up inside at the minute so I needed to vent and air my situation to people in the know who may have experienced similar things to me, and can maybe provide guidance. I would be extremely grateful to anyone willing to read this and provide their opinion.

I'm a 19 year old female student in the UK studying medicine. I don't have many childhood memories but was abused by my father (who is now no longer a part of my life apart from sparse visits every few months) at the age of 3 or so, though I have literally no recollection of the incidents and don't really find myself emotionally tied to any memories of that time, during which my parents also split up.

I was raised therefore single-handedly by my mother, who has had various long term partners since, most of whom I have got along with and have been very normal. From what I remember of my childhood I was extremely happy. I was always pretty clever but also had an intense hunger for information and learning so I loved and excelled at school. I remember having lots of friends throughout my childhood and I was extremely sociable. My mum tells me she had her suspicions whilst that I had aspergers owing to the fact I definitely had deep interests in specific things, an accelerated grasp of language and numbers, and had some strange routines such as lining things up in size order and refusing to allow different textures of food to touch on my plate. I only remember some of this, and that which I do remember, I only remember faintly.

Anyways, we moved across the country when I was 11, and had very happy teenage years - I had some fallings out with friends (particularly girls) as is normal, and they all upset me very much - I was a people pleaser. Again, I continued to be social and loved being around people. I remember being extremely happy and content with myself during this time. During this period, my cat died, and I grieved like I had lost a dear friend; in fact I'm sure I went through the 5 distinct phases of grief. I was also extremely empathetic - I cried lots at my grandmother's funeral despite not having had a relationship with her, because I was overwhelmed by the emotion in the room. I hated upsetting people.

Fast forward to the age of 16, and things started to feel a little off. I found myself feeling detached, and this made me worry, but these moments were fleeting. I fell out massively with one of my closest friends over a boy, and I almost felt numb about it. The fact that I didnt care and didnt really cry when I had completely lost one of my closest friends worried me infinitely - I fell into a deep spiral of introspection where I felt like an awful person, perpetually numb and uncaring about life. Perhaps you would say just depression, but it was at this time I discovered Schizoid PD and convinced myself I had it. I didn't really care about anyone, but at the same time I didnt really want to be alone with my thoughts ever - I ruminated and became so low. I couldn't connect with people deeply and this bothered me so much as I had always experienced the world brightly and with an abundance of human relations. My grades slipped drastically and I was suddenly numb. A few months passed and these feelings dulled slowly - I returned to a functional normality and got on with my studies - eventually doing very well and progressing to medical school - though I was doing a lot better than in my negative spiral, I feel I never quite returned to the deeply empathetic and connected person that I was, and lost my ability to be interested or passionate about anything.

Feeling ok passed for sometime, until about 4 months ago. Coming up to my first medical exams, it was like the downward spiral I had when I was 16 came back, with 1000 times more force. For the last 4 months I have questioned everything about myself. I have no joy in anything, and am completely numb - my biggest fear is that I never was 'fixed' in the interim time - and as such am not attached to anyone - I'm terrified that if someone close to me died, I wouldn't care or react appropriately. I have a cat now, and imagining the cat passing away barely registers in my emotional radar - completely the opposite to myself 3 years or so ago. I feel as though I have no personality or sense of self - I am just existing. I have no drive to do anything, and enjoy very little - it is like I'm dissociated and completely emotionally isolated from the world - functional but not living. I avoid socialising in big groups, and much of how I feel internally definitely fits what I have read about schizoid PD - especially using a mask around people (which I'm now worried is all I have been doing for the last 3 years since I initially 'broke', just without realising it). I worry that I feel no real emotional attachment to anyone - this is my biggest hatred about how I feel.

However, there are a couple of things that don't fit. I dont enjoy socialising, but I also hate being alone still. I like having the quiet company of one or two people, and can't stand being by myself in my room as I get lost in a negative spiral of worry. I ring my mum every day, and cried and cried when she dropped me off at university again as I felt so 'not normal' and had no sense of self, personality or identity - I didnt know how I would cope in the social hub that is university. I know this doesnt sound schizoid, but it is the real lack of interpersonal attachment/ emotional connection to anyone/any activity/ the world that really bothers me. Even in the time where I felt 'ok' I wasnt really emotionally living, I worry. All in all I am just extremely confused/low/feeling there is no point in life as a whole without an emotional core - especially when I know what it was to life emotionally and I miss it OH so dearly...

If you have read this far - I am extremely grateful. I feel so broken and like I monster, and I can't live like this - with no emotion or drive or motivation. Even going back to my 'ok' interim period feels like an unacceptable option as I'm now so self aware of what I have lost - I want to experience the world in a normal, healthy emotional way... Anyone with a similar experience or opinion with if I am schizoid or simply emotionally broken - any help would be appreciated beyond belief. As my username implies, I am at a loss, hopeless and needing help.. Thank you :!:
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Re: Am I Schizoid? Please hear me out - am at a loss

Postby naps » Mon Oct 15, 2018 1:17 pm

We can't diagnose here, and even if we were allowed to, the whose spectrum of asocial/social dysfunction disorders is kind of a blurry mess.

From what I understand, SPD is generally diagnosed based on how many of the diagnostic criteria (see sticky on top of main page) you meet. Having symptoms of other disorders can complicate things.

ataloss123 wrote:I don't have many childhood memories but was abused by my father (who is now no longer a part of my life apart from sparse visits every few months) at the age of 3 or so, though I have literally no recollection of the incidents and don't really find myself emotionally tied to any memories of that time, during which my parents also split up.


This is troubling. Have you ever seen a professional? There could be issues with PTSD. I would recommend talking to a psychiatrist or therapist.

I like having the quiet company of one or two people, and can't stand being by myself in my room as I get lost in a negative spiral of worry.


I'm not all that knowledgable about PTSD, but this sounds like it may point to something...

All in all I am just extremely confused/low/feeling there is no point in life as a whole without an emotional core - especially when I know what it was to life emotionally and I miss it OH so dearly...


I can relate to this. I was always introverted, but was still very social as a teen. As I entered my twenties, that started to become a problem. I began to socially withdraw exponentially. It felt natural. I never saw it as a problem because it was how I was most comfortable.

I think about many of my past social experiences fondly, but returning to that kind of lifestyle doesn't seem practical now. It's more of an idealization than anything else. Yet I can't shake the feeling that there's something specific blocking me from comfortably returning to the real world. It's like I'm clawing at a brick door instead of simply looking for the key in which to open it. Sometimes I think that key doesn't exist, sometimes I fear finding it.

How is your relationship with your mother these days?
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Re: Am I Schizoid? Please hear me out - am at a loss

Postby ataloss123 » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:11 am

Thanks naps, for your thoughts..

I guess I was just looking for anyone having gone through anything similar - I’m really just generally very unhappy at the minute and desperately pining to feel how I used to feel, pre age 16.
I’m currently seeing a psychotherapist through university but the sessions are sparse and I can’t really afford anything more..,

I’m not even sure I was introverted as a teenager - I had friends who I wanted to invite round to my house and wanted to be popular... and I was very emotionally attached to these friend (crying when they left town etc..) I’m sure that I used to be as normal as can be, and that is what hurts the most - I know exactly what is missing and how rich and rewarding it can be.

As for my relationship with my mother, it is a little strained... mainly because she is the only person to whom I have told absolutely everything, and she has seen me go through this, to varying degrees, since I was 16. She doesn’t think I’m schizoid, because I cried my eyes out when left at university and was a very emotional child, but I can tell that you constant calling her and not feeling any better is taking it’s toll on her.. I don’t want to just use her as a crutch whilst I feel this way -I get jealous of my brother and sister who seem to have organic, close relationships with her and whilst I’m close with her for sure, I feel like I’m only a drain on her at the minute where I desperately want to be a child she is proud of and close to without worrying about because of sad phone calls every day..
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Re: Am I Schizoid? Please hear me out - am at a loss

Postby Holodeck » Tue Oct 23, 2018 3:50 pm

Same sort of situation here. I was an emotional person up until the age of 25 (now 32). CBT with a psychologist helped me. Turned out for me that I had depression related issues (Bipolar technically) but due to the depression being so intense I wasn't feeling anything other than the high and low energy that bipolar causes. I'd get the lows but block them out with an impressive amount of denial
I wasn't truly inverted as a kid or a teen. I tried to be around others my age but it was hard due to parental situations. I would get overly attached to people and even though they weren't my "friends" so to speak, I'd get over the top about them moving or not seeing them again. I had major issues with an abandonment of anybody other than my parents back then that I didn't feel at all after my mid-twenties.

I’m sure that I used to be as normal as can be, and that is what hurts the most - I know exactly what is missing and how rich and rewarding it can be.


That was the one thing that I hated the most. I couldn't have cared less about situations in general but not feeling the way I used to made me incredibly depressed. I blocked out the thought well but it was numbly heartbreaking to the point of making me extremely angry to think I couldn't act how I was when not much younger. I'm still not quite right in the head but miles from how I was after CBT and managing my mood disorder. I feel like if I don't get much better I can live with this level of emotion even though I'd prefer to get all the way there (though not wailing over things that I should get over in a more adult way :P)

As for my relationship with my mother, it is a little strained... mainly because she is the only person to whom I have told absolutely everything, and she has seen me go through this, to varying degrees, since I was 16. She doesn’t think I’m schizoid, because I cried my eyes out when left at university and was a very emotional child, but I can tell that you constant calling her and not feeling any better is taking it’s toll on her.


Same though I hate mine so it's not as big a deal to me to have a better relationship. She's physically and mentally abusive so in my case, I don't see it being a benefit. I can see why you'd want to regrow that bond with yours that you once had though. That has to be hard to deal with even if it's unemotional assuming you're numb to it now.

I hated upsetting people.


This was the main thing that made me know I was getting better. I went from "*Sigh oh well it happened. How annoying. I hope they don't bring it up and I have to deal with them being emotional at me." to "Ok, I need to be there for that person or I'll hate myself later." At first, I thought it was me "doing the right thing" but it went from people who went through situations like me making me say "huh" or finding it somewhat interesting to actually feeling for them and what they were going through whether happy or sad. Actually smiling or trying to hold back light tears...feeling is weird after years of not.

Fast forward to the age of 16, and things started to feel a little off. I found myself feeling detached, and this made me worry, but these moments were fleeting.


I remember breaking up with my closest friend of a decade after he had been treating me badly when I was 16. I started to cry a little because he cried but I don't know if I pushed it too hard to the side or blocked out the feels but I remember my dad asking how Matthew was and me flatly telling him we weren't friends anymore. He had this look of grief and disbelief on his face that we could possibly not be friends whilst obviously being concerned about how I was. It worried him to see me not act emotional about it. I remember him talking to my mom about it.

I fell into a deep spiral of introspection where I felt like an awful person, perpetually numb and uncaring about life. Perhaps you would say just depression, but it was at this time I discovered Schizoid PD and convinced myself I had it. I didn't really care about anyone, but at the same time I didnt really want to be alone with my thoughts ever - I ruminated and became so low. I couldn't connect with people deeply and this bothered me so much as I had always experienced the world brightly and with an abundance of human relations. My grades slipped drastically and I was suddenly numb. A few months passed and these feelings dulled slowly - I returned to a functional normality and got on with my studies - eventually doing very well and progressing to medical school - though I was doing a lot better than in my negative spiral, I feel I never quite returned to the deeply empathetic and connected person that I was, and lost my ability to be interested or passionate about anything.


My dad has bipolar and suffers intensely from it due to not taking meds properly so I refused to believe I had depression. It terrified me. I feel like SPD is a crutch people use to feel like that's all it is and that they don't have depression or possibly Aspergers. It being a personality disorder means the person acts within the guidelines but it doesn't mean that there's a specific personality disorder gene (though depression can be genetic) or some all-powerful robot tapped a person on the head to make them act that way. People go through experiences to make personalities (disorder or not). Yes, aspies come out initially with Aspergers but I believe they can have both especially if they have depression. There are differences.

Point is SPD and depression are identical if it's extreme depression. Extreme causes apathy which would block emotions. Like I said when I got my bipolar meds stable I started getting emotions back (though still a lighter version though I have a hefty amount of PSTD from my 20's to account for that).

I dont enjoy socialising, but I also hate being alone still.


This is a schizoid trait. I get overwhelmed by stimuli when talking to people. Even if I have my bipolar meds working I'm screwed from lack of focus. I strongly suggest green tea. It helps with anxiety and increasing dopamine (motivation and focus without being overstimulated), oxytocin (liking to be around others.) and (serotonin) good feelings.

After I found out about this I tested it with some folks I know who have similar issues and they all had good results into a month later. I even found one who was willing to do it without knowing what I was looking for and he too experienced the same results. Not saying it's a cure but helps manage it with myself and the others I know for sure.
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