Is My Friend Sick with a Certain Disorder?

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

My friend had a break down recently. He tried to take his own life, this was done horrifically. In the process, he killed his long owned fish. Specifically said “pain is not real”. Blamed his actions on ‘aliens’. Said he snapped out of it can came back to reality, thus driving himself to the emergency room. I’ve caught him arguing with himself. He has spurts of anger. He’s highly responsible as well and hygienic. Now he acts as if nothing happened. What do you think?

A. Attempting suicide is very serious. Thankfully, he was not successful.

His symptoms included blaming his actions on “aliens,” anger outbursts, arguing with himself, all of which are indicative of a break with reality. By definition, a break with reality is a psychosis. Episodes of psychosis are associated with disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and several others. Having one episode of psychosis does not mean that another one is imminent, nor does it mean that a mental health disorder is currently present. Medical problems can cause psychosis. So can illicit drug use.

You stated that your friend behaves as though “nothing happened.” It may be that he does not recall the details of what happened. It may also be that he simply does not want to talk about it. It was likely a difficult time, one which he may not want to relive.

It’s difficult to know what may be wrong. It’s difficult, especially over the Internet, to provide a diagnosis. Encourage your friend to engage in psychological treatment and hopefully, such an episode will never again happen. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 12 Oct 2012

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2012). Is My Friend Sick with a Certain Disorder?. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 31, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/10/12/is-my-friend-sick-with-a-certain-disorder/

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