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Phase II The Bright Side of Schizophrenia (A Series): Embrace Your Mind

Posted May 24 2009 11:49pm
Now that we have discussed the myths, stereotypes, and fears associated with having schizophrenia it is time to talk about the good things associated with the illness. I am doing a series called Phase II The Bright Side, I will discuss positive attributes related to schizophrenia. You can help me with this series by submitting a success story of mental illness (i.e. bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia) in a 500 word or less essay/article, and email it to, and in the subject bar label it Success Story. You do not have to attach your full name to the article, but make sure you give your first name and state. Also, please give a title to your essay/article or one will be provided. The success story will be posted on the website Embracing My Mind.

Schizophrenia and Related Disorders Alliance of America (SARDAA) stated: "Studies have indicated that 25 percent of those having schizophrenia recover completely, [and] 50 percent are improved over a 10-year period..."

Understand that recovery is possible. If you or a loved one are concerned about a person who has schizophrenia, remember the facts and know that they can get better. For instance, I probably already shared this information with you, but a little less than a couple of years ago I experienced some really bad symptoms of schizophrenia to the extent that my mother thought she would need to get some sort of guardianship over me. I was catatonic, not moving my limbs for hours at a time, I refused visitors (family), and I stopped eating, showering, and speaking.

The judge said I was incompetent, and sent me to the state hospital. After my family encouraged my attorney to persuade the judge to mandate medication compliance, and was approved, I slowly but surely got better with medication and time. I started talking again, seeing family, taking care of personal hygiene, and living again!

Embrace your mind by re-learning yourself after diagnosis. Prior to my nervous breakdown I was involved in several activities- church, school, work, and cross country. However, after my diagnosis I had to learn to take things slow for a little while until I could readjust to overcoming schizophrenia. I took a break from a lot of things and slowly rearranged them into my schedule. I took a class in school and attended a day treatment program for young adults where I learned more about my illness. I even started volunteering and dating again. Now I am volunteering regularly and enjoying a new social life. Everybody is different so what worked for one person may not work for another.

Believe that there is a future after diagnosis. There is no cure for schizophrenia, yet, but there is treatment that enables a person to function well and live life. Again, SARDAA stated that 25 percent recover completely, in order words they do not experience symptoms anymore with the support of medication. If you have a mental illness, with treatment you can overcome anything you set your mind to.

Thank you for considering to join Phase II The Bright Side series by submitting a 500word or less essay/article by email to To learn more about schizophrenia visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) or Schizophrenia Society of Novia Scotia (Canada). Check out my new forum at Embracing My Mind.
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