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I don't know about wonder drugs.

I have schizoaffective disorder and social anxiety. I am able to go out, work with people, socialize. For me, it took a number of different things and baby steps to get to this point. I take lexapro, which helps some. I approach things I want to avoid, which helps some, I do: deep breathing, visualization, Cbt, "as if" thinking, breaking things into smaller tasks, all help a little and it adds up.

 There is a book called The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook that I think is pretty good.

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1 hour ago, madmax15 said:

I was wondering if the right medication would help with it? Has anyone had experience with a wonder drug that fixed this? 

I don't think there is a 'wonder drug' out there that "fixes this" ... makes the SZ less or maybe disappear (?) ... wasn't totally sure what you were referring to.

But yes, I do think there are meds out there that could help.  It is hard to figure out meds that you might need, because everyone is different and their body reacts differently.  Has your pdoc given you any meds to try?

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There's totally light at the end of this tunnel. But the light isn't a med.

 

I have schizoaffective, with insidious onset starting about when I was twelve. By the time I was 19 my ability to have functional relationships was shot. I got med help around then, but struggled with finding the right med combo until about 26. Still, between 19 and 26 I had many good times (despite being in an unhealthy relationship), but being put on antidepressants at 26 was the thing that really made me stable. And I broke up with my long-time girlfriend (whose own issues had kept me very isolated.) SO I resolved to go out and make friends. Now, at 29, I run two social clubs, belong to two others (clubs relating to hobbies and art I do, respectively,) and have a wide social group as well as several very close friends. If I can pull this off, with all my MI issues (SZA, OCD, and c-PTSD) and general trauma-related disfunction, anybody can. It takes time. And finding the right med combo was just a piece of it. The majority of my relearning of social skills really blossomed because of what I was doing WHILE adjusting my meds. 

 

This is generally what I did:

*See a therapist. Work on mindfulness. 

*Find clubs relating to things you like or groups you're part of and GO TO THEM! You're going to feel socially awkward at first, maybe for a while. Learning to be socially adept is a skill you learn from copying people and trial-and-error. Focus on being an honest, good person. The people you'll want to befriend will pick up on this- if you put yourself in their path.

*Try new things. Having interests you are passionate about gives you things to connect with people about. Plus, it will just make you happier.

 

And the X factor is practice. Meds are hella important, but they won't help if you hide in your house. Socializing is scary, but it gets easier the more you do it. Like exercising. It might not even be that fun at first, you just gotta power through it.  

 

Sorry that's not exactly the answer I think you wanted. There's no med that will make you a social butterfly- but you can TOTALLY teach yourself to be one. 

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6 hours ago, madmax15 said:

It just sucks being socially awkward. I want to be more extroverted. 

I can empathize with you.  I am very socially awkward and would love to be more extroverted.  You aren't alone.

The main thing that is preventing me from becoming more extroverted, is my high level of anxiety and stress. 

24 minutes ago, Anna Least said:

*Find clubs relating to things you like or groups you're part of and GO TO THEM!

This is not as easy as you might think ... depression will prevent almost everyone from going out of the house (or from wherever), so you saying, "GO TO THEM" won't always work.  When I meet people it always will stress me out in one way or another to the point that I just can't handle it anymore (I know my limits when it comes to stress and what I can do or not).  And it isn't a matter of thinking that going to certain things/places will help and make someone happy or cheery or whatever.

26 minutes ago, Anna Least said:

*Try new things. Having interests you are passionate about gives you things to connect with people about. Plus, it will just make you happier.

Same here with the depression.  Depression can do a number on people, and when depressed, I am not interested in anything.  So things like what you are saying in your post above can be literally impossible for many people.

I'm glad it worked out for you though!

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melissa, I totally get where you are coming from. I'm not saying "just go out, NBD" I'm saying "Going out is hard, but it's the only way to not be socially awkward", which is true. Socializing is a learned skill. Meds make you motivated and alert enough to do it, but only experience is going to show you how to actually do it. It's like thinking you can learn to ride a bike by going on antidepressants. Meds will make you able to try, but they won't teach you the actual skills.

 

I'm not saying meds aren't important, by any means. They saved my life. But based on what he has said in this thread, OP is stable med-wise. He's concerned about being "socially awkward." That's something you fix with practice. If OP also has social anxiety and depression, well that's different. But so far that's not what he's said. 

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@madmax15 Also, the negative symptoms (they are described in this link) are harder to treat

https://www.livingwithschizophreniauk.org/advice-sheets/negative-symptoms-understanding/

 

Can you explain your social issue a little more? 

Like Anna says, if you are uncomfortable or awkward, practice helps.

But, like melissa said, if you are depressed or have other symptoms you may need to get those under control first.

I don't think I will ever be the life of the party, but I can take part in conversations

As far as I know there is no "extrovert" pill.

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57 minutes ago, Anna Least said:

But based on what he has said in this thread, OP is stable med-wise.

What did OP say to give the impression he is stable med-wise?  He is looking for a med to help him get out more.  Reading that, it seems to me that he isn't quite stable because he needs a med to help him.  If he was stabilized he wouldn't be looking for another med.

Also written by the OP (in bold) below:

12 hours ago, madmax15 said:

Ok I have schizophrenia. I have problems getting out and socializing. I was wondering if the right medication would help with it? Has anyone had experience with a wonder drug that fixed this? 

Like I was saying, he is looking for a bed to help him. 

---------------

12 hours ago, madmax15 said:

Has anyone had experience with a wonder drug that fixed this? 

Reading his entire first post, I am thinking he wants to "help it," and is why he is looking for a wonder drug to help give him a boost (med suggestions) so he will want to go out and start to socialize.

Also written by OP:

11 hours ago, madmax15 said:

I mean if it's part of the schizophrenia shouldn't the medication help with it?! That's what I meant

I agree with this ... medication might help with things.

 

But we can agree to disagree if needed.

I don't want this thread to be derailed.

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I think we're disagreeing over how to ready the few things OP has said. 

12 hours ago, madmax15 said:

Ok I have schizophrenia. I have problems getting out and socializing. I was wondering if the right medication would help with it? Has anyone had experience with a wonder drug that fixed this? 

Here it seems like he's asking if problems socializing can be fixed with medication. He could mean either lack of social skills or social anxiety at this point.

Then he says:

10 hours ago, madmax15 said:

I'm on Seroquel XR and I'm fine on that. 

It just sucks being socially awkward. I want to be more extroverted. 

Here it seems like he's talking about social skills, which are learnable. And this was the point I chimed in with my advice, when it seemed like he was talking about social skills, not social anxiety.

 

You can read his posts either way.

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As a former moderator has said, negative symptoms are a bitch. If you have negative symptoms, then they are very hard to treat. Meds can help, but as yet they have not found a med that fully treats it. Some of the newer antipsychotics are designed especially to help with negative symptoms and they do but to varying degrees and no med completely takes care of negative symptoms for all people. It's a tough nut to crack.

Doctors often treat negative symptoms with an antidepressant and therapy in addition to the main antipsychotic. I will say it once again that you could benefit from therapy (not just group therapy but individual therapy too) that focuses on developing social skills.

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I agree with confused. It's like a depressed person asking if medication make him be able to swim. The answer is no, of course not, but medication can get a depressed person out of bed and perhaps interested in swimming. Still he has to learn to swim and that takes effort.

So medication might make you less likely to isolate and have a desire to be around other people, but it will not fix deficits in social skills. That you have to learn and that takes effort.

Once again, you have to work on social skills in therapy.

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6 minutes ago, madmax15 said:

What IF the problem with socializing comes from paranoia and not trusting people. If the medication took it away... Get what I'm trying to say? 

I do think that finding a med to help you over the hump of getting outside or not would be helpful.  But it won't do all the work for you.

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@madmax15 that was what I was asking when I wanted more of an explanation. 

If the paranoia is part of psychosis (people use the term differently), yes treating the paranoia with medication could help you return to how you socialize without it.

but, if you have a worldview that the world is a dangerous place and people can't be trusted, without psychosis, meds won't change that. You would need therapy, which jt has said repeatedly, to learn how to trust, along with other skills.

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