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Hi. My story starts when I was twentyish. I made some new friends at work who were stoners and started smoking with them. Then one day I felt off. I felt like I was high but I wasn't. I felt like I was floating behind my body and watching myself go through life. Looking in the mirror I didn't recognize myself. Even seeing my face was hard because it was strange and distorted. It went on for weeks and I went to an eye doctor then a neurologist. I had CAT scan and MRI and they couldn't find anything wrong. She asked if I had anxiety and I told her yeah I had dealt with anxiety my whole life and she told me to see a mental health professional. At the time I had no insurance so I quit pursuing medical help. My gf had just kicked me out because surprise she had a husband that she technically never divorced who was addicted to meth and needed her help. I got my own place. We worked together and remained friends.
Then I started getting panic attacks where I was having racing thoughts and couldn't quiet my head and between that and feeling like I was living in a dream I decided to find a psychiatrist. My ex was helping me. Since I didn't have insurance we went to a state ran psych place and they told me I needed to be medicated but the doctor would want me to do an inpatient program so as to monitor me while on new meds to make sure there weren't any negative side effects. I agreed. I had no idea that I was signing myself into a state hospital where they would take my clothes and lock me up with a bunch of crazy people. It was a Thursday and they wouldn't let me leave until I saw the doctor. That didn't happen until Monday.
That Monday I saw the doctor and was so ready to get out of there that I told him I was fine and was just under stress and felt better. He asked if I thought the meds were making me feel better and I said no it was just the time away and I needed to get back to work. They let me leave.
Then I proceeded to float through life, going along with the flow, not really in control.
Fast forward to last year I'm 36 married and had a kid.
I started having panic attacks again wondering what I was doing, how I got married, what was I doing with a kid, how could I be a father. I was also having a real hard time accepting the reality of Trump as president. I felt like I was living in a movie and watching myself play my role with no control over my actions.
I started feeling suicidal and making plans of how I could kill myself and make it look like an accident so my family could get my life insurance. They would be better off with the money than being supported by a guy who sat at work every day spaced out wondering how he got the job and how much longer he could fake his way through it.
I met a girl, a wife of a friend of a friend, who was a mom and we started talking online a lot. We became good friends. I started having fantasies of running off with her and leaving my life behind as it was too stressful.
Then I finally told my wife what was going on and that I needed help and after a few counselors found my psychiatrist.
She met with me once and decided I was schizophrenic. She put me on antipsychotics and antianxiety meds.
Now I don't have hallucinations. I have racing thoughts and in my head I have several trains of thoughts at once and think in different voices. I think she chalked that up to hearing voices even though they are thoughts that I control. My therapist said it's normal that everyone has a council in their head and I was just hyper aware of it.
I continue to take my meds and joined schizophrenia forums. I tried talking to people to validate how I was feeling and experience the normalcy of someone else feeling the same way. But they all talked about voices. External voices. And visual hallucinations.
I was feeling better but still feeling fake and in a dream.
After researching schizophrenia non stop I came across depersonalization on Wikipedia. When I read it it was like a light going off in my head. For the first time there were description of my experiences and a word for it. I did more research and joined a forum for it on Facebook. I talked to people and they validated my experiences and talked of similar experiences.
I got excited and emailed my psychiatrist asking if she had heard of it and that I think my diagnosis is wrong. She flat out told me I need to go get a second opinion because she doesn't agree with me.
I've been weening myself off the antipsychotics and feeling better. My anxiety has lessened since I have been talking to people I can relate to.
But then every once in a while I see a post in the forums where someone is afraid they are turning schizophrenic. I see on the wiki page that schizophrenia has to be ruled out because it mimics symptoms.
I guess I'm just curious if anyone has had a similar experience. I'm currently looking for a new doctor for a second opinion. But I wanted to post here and get input.
I experience life in third person. Everything gets hazy and looks fake. I feel like my body is doing g and saying things automatically without my input. I feel like I've floated through life without making my own decisions. I get panic attacks when I realize I'm real and accountable for my actions. I think about life and existence as a burden most of the time. I fear I'm going to lose myself completely. I have trouble working and paying attention to anything g because I co stantly sink back behind my eyeballs and space out. It's like when you drive somewhere but do t remember the drive but it being your whole life.
Thoughts?
 

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Hello and welcome to the forum. :)

You do not sound like you have schizophrenia to me. The fact that you do not hear voices or have hallucinations. It can be common that people with DP/DR think that they have schizophrenia, but in most cases this is not usually so.

Based off the symptoms you listed, it does sound like what you're experiencing could be DP. Unfortunately most mental health professionals do not know much about DP. I wouldn't count on them to give you a diagnosis of "depersonalization". They like to label us as "depressed", "anxious", and I myself have been misdiagnosed as "schizophrenic". The fact of the matter is the vast majority of mental health 'experts' don't know what depersonalization is.

I was also having a real hard time accepting the reality of Trump as president. I felt like I was living in a movie and watching myself play my role with no control over my actions.
Wow yeah, I could see that, that is scary.

After researching schizophrenia non stop I came across depersonalization on Wikipedia. When I read it it was like a light going off in my head. For the first time there were description of my experiences and a word for it.
I had a similar experience

It's like when you drive somewhere but do t remember the drive but it being your whole life.
That is a terrific analogy. I relate 100%.

Again welcome to the forum, and good luck in your endeavors.
 
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