Thursday, 10 January 2019

Positive and Negative Psychosis

Many people ask me regularly what psychosis really is because it is a genuinely difficult state of mind to pinpoint and identify.  Now I am no doctor of any kind but as I have been afflicted with bipolarity for almost 15 years now and gone through 3 psychotic episodes I want to try and shed some light on this subject.  

Psychosis is a state of mind where thought and emotions are distorted to such a degree that the person affected by it loses touch with their outer reality.  Now this a very general description which needs to be explored to be fully understood. Psychosis can occur in many different ways.  It can be a positive psychosis, hence associated with feelings of happiness and enlightenment, or it can be a negative psychosis erupting feelings of sadness, upset or anguish.  When I suffered from psychotic episodes they were very much negative and even to a degree violent.  I constantly kept on hearing voices of certain people wanting to bring harm to me and my close ones.  Now in this case I was only able to deal with these psychotic voices by letting them run through my head and hang on to the positive belief that indeed one day the voices would stop and I would get better.  Now it's easier to say all this than to actually practice it but it worked for me and I'm still alive here writing about it.  I even tried to stop my thoughts but naturally came to an agreement it was physically and mentally impossible.  As long as you hang to the positive feeling that one day you will feel better and overcome psychosis you will have fulfilled the motto of "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger".  The medication does work and a good doctor can help you.

Now with regards to the positive psychosis I believe it is a state of psychosis elevated by mania where the subject is in fact deliriously happy all the time and can be brainstorming wild ideas about business or socializing (or trying to socialize) persistently with anyone they can and the voices may tell them that they are close to a prophet or a god of sorts and that there is nothing they cannot achieve.  This may seem like an all powerful permanent adrenaline rush that everyone desires but it does not work out that way because it is not in touch with the external reality of these individuals.  Great harm can come by upsetting the wrong people or even to the individual who suffers from this type of psychosis because it is a sort of delusion of thinking that everyone will agree with you.  Yet there are some people with positive psychoses who are brilliant businessmen and women because they think of out of the box ideas but this does not mean it is easy to live with this condition.

I think the most important point to take out of all of this is to accept that you are bipolar and that you need to take medication to control it.   If you have past issues consider a therapist as well.   And for the love of all that is holy please don't take recreational drugs (marijuana included) or excessive alcohol to control your moods.  It doesn't help: It only makes you worse.  Then again there are people who live very healthy lifestyles and are able to control their moods so that they don't flip into psychosis but still it's a very small minority of people who can succeed with this type of routine.

Identifying someone who is in psychosis starts with the person who is afflicted by it to take a moment to step aside and agree that perhaps there is something wrong with them and that they should seek guidance from a psychiatrist.  A positive psychosis can quickly turn into a negative psychosis and bring harm to you and others around you.  If you know someone who you think is in psychosis but who do not seem to acknowledge that anything is wrong with them give them time to come to their realization.  This case may differ from person to person but a person can only receive help if they want to be helped.  Stay strong brothers and sisters!   

     

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