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I'm curious what everyone's greatest fears are with this disorder - why would it be so bad to get it? Why do we seem to obsess about the disorder?

I'll give you what originally scared me about it; to kind of start it off. I'm not really that spooked about it anymore, as I've kind of adopted the mentality that if it comes then it's a challenge I'll have to face, but up until that time nothing I do will help (as, from what we know of the cause, nothing can be done about it - at least as far as I can tell). Really, it is the kind of "well, what can I do?" thought pattern that seems to help with me. But, the point is that it does help. Realizing that it would be something I would just face if it happened has given me a lot of relief - and sort of taken the need to control myself concerning the issue out of my hands.

What scared me about it mostly were a few things:

1) Fear of abandonment - of being totally on my own in the universe
2) Fear of rejection - of being left to my own devices and ignored by people - despised, pushed away, laughed at.
3) Loss of control - I could no longer control my own thoughts or my own mind, I would be totally lost within a foreign place with no hope.
4) Loss of success - My dreams, my aspirations, all of it - gone; with no hope of ever getting anything done in my life. It wouldn't be until I was an old man that I would come down from it.
5) Being trapped - Nothing I could do would help, I would be helpless.

These are just a few. Now, the interesting thing I noted a couple years ago when I first started coming out of the disorder (DP) was that each and every one one of these big fears actually existed long before the disorder - and I sort of "glued" them to schizophrenia. If any other disorder out there RESULTED in these effects, then I would fear that too - so, it wasn't really anything specific to the disorder that got me; it was having a disorder that gave me these effects that got me.

It struck me, then, that these issues are very deep within me; and I have since battled fears of abandonment, control issues with my environment, etc. These are all seperate issues, but they came together into one disorder.

Now, there is a cognitive therapist whose name is Albert Ellis that teaches a branch of CBT known as REBT - or the Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy; and it's very, very good for these sort of things. Like a lot of complex theories, it's kind of distilled for public consumption - and it gives a three piece theory that human emotional disorders are, largely, exacerbated not by what happens to us but our take on what happens to us - in other words, it's not the person that says "you're an idiot" that hurt our feelings - it's the fact that we have the irrational belief that someone must ALWAYS approve of us that hurt us. Their words, their actions and whatnot do not affect us - we affect us.

The same goes for anything else, really, it's not the THING, but my take on the THING. And, in this case, schizophrenia was frightening to me because I thought it meant absolute disaster. But, not true....

I don't HAVE to be healthy at all times to enjoy life, and I don't HAVE to be sane to positively affect people's lives - to make progress, etc. There are plenty of success stories out there (and, yes, there are plenty of horror stories), but with modern treatment and the like, the story is a lot better.

Anyway, I don't want to sound like I'm preaching a gospel here (and it probably does, so, I apologize), but if I can offer any help to those who are currently fearing this disorder I will - regardless of whether it makes me sound preachy; hopefully I'll help somebody.

My bet is this: in the act of writing down what scares you about the disorder, you might gain some interesting insight. It's only a guess, though.
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