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I didn't know where to put this.  I'm depressed and I post a lot here, so this is where it's going.  Feel free to move it.

Tomorrow is the second half of my psychiatric eval and I really don't want to go.  I feel like I'm going in for the mental equivalent of a root canal.  We're going to talk about my psychotic tendencies and I don't want to.  I don't want to!  How nuts is this, I'm sitting here crying because I don't want to talk to the pdoc.  I want to just buck up and quit being a baby but I can't stop.  I'm terrified.  I'm embarrassed.  I'm so embarrassed by my psychotic stuff and I just.  Don't. Want.  To.  Talk.  About.  It.  I know I have to but I don't want to, yeah, I'm probably being a hypochondriac (I hope), be dxed schizo.  No offense to anyone who is, I just don't want to be one of you.  I'm sorry!  I wish I were more enlightened about it but I'm not.  My dad is crazy, like ready for the institution crazy, and I don't want to end up like that.  Who would love me, who would ever take me seriously again?  I'm just so worried because I do such weird things.  I think such weird things.  Sometimes people really don't know what to make of me.  It embarrasses me so much and I don't want it to get worse.  Disorganized thinking?  Yeah.  Apophenia?  Yes.  Apathy?  Yes.  Hallucinations?  Yes.  Paranoia?  Yes.  Difficulty articulating my thoughts?  Hell yeah.  And lately I've been getting spells where I feel numb.  Just, my head is empty.  I feel detached from emotion and have so much trouble thinking. 

I don't want to be this way.  I want to be normal. I don't know what I'd do if it got worse.  I dont' want to be crazy.  I'm just very afraid right now.  Thanks for reading.

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We're going to talk about my psychotic tendencies and I don't want to.  I don't want to!  How nuts is this, I'm sitting here crying because I don't want to talk to the pdoc.

Oh, sweetie, don't be so hard on yourself. Of course you don't want to talk to the pdoc about your psychotic stuff; who does? Anxiety about that sort of thing is totally completely normal. Having to explain your psychotic stuff is a suckfest. The only thing worse is having psychotic stuff that is inadequately treated. And you know that you must explain it to the pdoc to get adequate treatment.

So permit yourself to hate it, but do it anyway, because you must.

Maybe you could write some things down ahead of time, so the pdoc could read them and then ask you questions, if that would be easier. Or pretend you are speaking of someone else - try to get that clinical distance between yourself and your symptoms.

Do what you have to do to be totally honest about your symptoms, so you can get the best treatment. But feel free to hate the whole sucky process. Do something really nice for yourself when the session is over.

Best of luck to you, sweetie.

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hey Ella

hope it goes ok for you, it will probably be easier than you think. In your posting you sound like you are pretty damned unscrambled to me. You can put your thoughts and worries into a cohesive order. So what if you have a name put to a personal trait or series of traits? That doesn't make you BAD. That gives you a diagnosis to deal with, that's all. That can only help you.Try and put things in perspective. I don't suppose there is much that psychs have not heard before so really let it out! Be gentle with yourself. take care, Picklehead

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Maybe you could write some things down ahead of time, so the pdoc could read them and then ask you questions, if that would be easier. Or pretend you are speaking of someone else - try to get that clinical distance between yourself and your symptoms.

Ella -

I second this.  Getting some narrative about your symptoms down on paper ahead of time is a good idea because it lets you think about it and review it without pressure, and letting the pdoc read it saves you having to try to articulate it then and there, and frees the two of you to get down to business.  Remember, the object of the interview is not so the pdoc can nod his head and say, "Yep, you're doomed"

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I think you have a legitimate worry. Schizophrenia is a bad label to carry. The most important thing is getting the right meds. Make sure you mention any manic episodes if there have been any manic episodes. Emphasize mood problems too. Once you get on the right meds then argue the diagnosis to a more socially acceptable diagnosis.

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Thank you muchly for the moral support.  And suggestions.  I've actually gone through the boards and copy-&-pasted some relevant posts of mine into Word, in addition to notes I've jotted down, so I can just hand it over to him and say, "Here's what I'm talking about."  The less talking I have to do, the better. 

In your posting you sound like you are pretty damned unscrambled to me.
That is a compliment I can hold dearly to my heart!  Truly, that's a wonderful thing to hear, since I often wonder whether or not I sound coherent. 

Make sure you mention any manic episodes if there have been any manic episodes. Emphasize mood problems too.

Bipolar most likely, according to pdoc.  Funny thing, you can have all the symptoms of schizophrenia and still carry the label "bipolar" as long as the psychosis and mood symptoms are concurrent.  If there's a two week period in which psychosis is present without mood symptoms, you're schizoaffective.  And I can't recall with 100% accuracy (seriously) whether or not that's ever been the case.

Feeling a bit braver today, though I'm still highly emotional.  Yes, the important thing is deciphering the problem so it can be properly treated.  Bring it on, pdoc! ;)

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Hi Ella you're doing the best that you can remember that. Printing out parts of this discussion should be helpful for the doc. I think you'll be okay. it's alright to be emotional and reasonable to be worried about a new doc. I hope it all goes well for you.

Lilie

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And the verdict is: she's not psychotic. First of all, I feel like a MI snob for going on about how terrible a scz dx would be.  I really do feel bad about that.  I just want to say that it isn't so much the label (though I was a bit concerned about that aspect) as the progressive nature of the disease that had me worried.  It can do a lot of damage upstairs.  I really believe I would've come to accept a scz dx before long and might've even been publically outspoken about it. 

But I'll never get that opportunity because that's not what I've got.  It's funny because the pdoc put it in such a complimentary light that I actually felt good about my dx...and now I just feel kinda silly.  I'm the victim of an overactive imagination.  I was so worried about turning into my dad that some of my symptoms might actually have been, well, psychosomatic.  Some of them, he said, are consistent with temporal lobe epilepsy and so I have to have an EEG and MRI to rule it out (or any other neuro thingys).

What I have definitely got is Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder.  And according to pdoc, OCPDed people tend to be highly creative and have vivid imaginations.  And are, of course, obsessive!  We're, er, pretty good at creating our own realities, unwittingly, er, er, and, well, at least the pdoc was very respectful (he's an anxiety disorders specialist) and has talked me out of, at least for the time being, thinking that my CFIDS is a somatoform disorder.  Well, anyway.  I have a "rich inner life"  :) If only I could make money off of that sucker.

Thanks again.  And, thanks, Lilie and Debbie Jo for chiming in with your good thoughts.

Forgot to add: We didn't get around to talking about the bipolar yet because I can't be on meds when I have the EEG.  So I've got to go back to talk mood disorders and meds.  Still umedicated for the time being  ;)

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Cerberus,

Basically a diagnosis of schizophrenia will follow one around everywhere. A  diagnosis goes on records etc. With a diagnosis of schizophrenia one will have a harder time getting jobs, one will be forced to lie friends etc. The word does get out. If a diagnosis of schizophrenia can be avoided it is best avoided. In the US one is uninsurable after the diagnosis. The important thing is treatment.  The meds for psychotic depression are basically the same as for schizophrenia so if there is a choice one takes the psychotic depression diagnosis. Treatment is rehabilative for schizophrenia so if Ella were diagnosed as schizophrenic the goal would be to teach her how to keep a clean apartment etc. With a diagnosis of schizophrenia the general level of medical care is poorer as what is the point of providing good treatment or at least this is the unspoken assumption.

Finally there really are no clear biologcial borders to schizophrenia. The term seems definite and the liablities which come to with the term are definite but biologically what schizophrena is is unclear.

Going with a psychotic depression diagnosis rather than schizophrenia is in no way similiar to saying I will pretend I have a broken arm even though the leg hurts.

Sorry Ella for getting off track. I am very happy you avoided the psychotic label.

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Cerberus, having a degree in education, I'm happy to assist in illustrating your thesis.  However, I decline intellectual inclusion in this debate, maintaining a position of neutrality relative to blah blah blah blah blah...  I think you guys are taking this subject just a wee bit too seriously, but I luve ya anyway!  Tension-diffusing diversion:  :::cheek smooch:::  (Hey, it always works for Snoopy  ;) )

  Ella,

Keep that chin up, girl!!

BTW, I'm from Pittsburgh, too!!

Yes!  Another prospective attendee of our W. PA meet-up to-be-held-sometime-in-the-future-when-Ella-and-Elizabeth-have-more-$.  This just goes to prove Neil Gaiman's assertion that Pittsburgh is a very odd place  :) Must be something in the water...

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Neil Gaiman thinks our water is bad???  Hmmmm...I think so too.  Ha ha ha

Yay!  Another PAer!

I'm glad to know you're okay, Ella.  I'm also an OCDer...not as bad I used to be.  Maybe that's a lie.  Who knows?

Anyway, just thought I'd pop on in and say hi!  Right now, I'm on the verge of something.  I don't know.  I was up all damn night.  Slept a few hours again.  And now my cats are getting on my nerves again.  I should be cleaning this place up, but I'm still at that point where I just don't give a flying fuck.  Good news!  Some guy from DuBois and I have been talking online and there's a pretty good chance that we might start dating.  I'm not usually into locals, but he sounds pretty damn cool.  I'm still all scared to actually let this guy into my life because I know I'm a wacko!  Plus all the dark horror stories of my past still lurk in my life.  Gotta take things real slow.  That's what I keep reminding myself.  And since I have that stupid tendency to rush things because of BPD, I've got to hold back, if you know what I mean. 

Well, I didn't mean to take over your thread, there Ella.

Elizabeth 

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NG said Pittsburgh is "a very odd place", which, coming from him, must make us something like the east coast version of Twin Peaks (which I always thought would be a cool place to live, so that's Ok).

I'm still all scared to actually let this guy into my life because I know I'm a wacko!
Nah, you aren't wacko.  But maybe it is OCD...Pdoc says O-Cness causes people to view themselves in a wildly unrealistic and condemnatory way.  Faults seem more obvious than they really are, or people imagine faults that don't actually exist. 

We're probably much too hard on ourselves.  (If only I could get myself to believe it!)

I'm still all scared to actually let this guy into my life because I know I'm a wacko!  Plus all the dark horror stories of my past still lurk in my life.  Gotta take things real slow.  That's what I keep reminding myself.  And since I have that stupid tendency to rush things because of BPD, I've got to hold back, if you know what I mean.

I hope everything works out for the two of you!  And, if it doesn't, then I'm sure it's because there's someone even better out there for you. 

I have a tendency to jump in head first, too.  I get attached too quickly, my imagination starts projecting all these hopes and dreams onto the poor shmuck who had the misfortune of finding me interesting  ;) And then a switch is flipped and the devaluation process begins...  That is rough.  I hope you're able to keep the BPD tendencies under your thumb. 

:::Hugs:::

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