Does This Sound Like Psychosis?

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Hi. When I was around 6 years old I started believing that there were people outside my window watching me and that there were cameras in my walls and teddies. I believed I was always being watched and monitored. Later, when I started being on the computer more in my teens, I remember my computer was tapped. I was always careful about what I would say or do because they were watching me and, in my teen years, assessing me. I knew they were watching me because I had latent powers that would one day be very significant.

Then, when I was around 17, this TV show we’d sometimes watch became very alive and real. It had powers programmed into it to attack my mind and give me powers that would also hurt me. Once I heard a demon speak to me because my piano playing was hurting him. Then I believed that I was being targeted by demons, that my powers made them afraid and they wanted to take me out. I’d see them in my dreams and I could feel them when I was awake sometimes. I’d also have constant thoughts flash across my mind of me healing people so I believed one of my powers was to be a healer. I could also walk into buildings and tell what the people were like, the owners especially like, if they were good people or if they were into dark arts or something.

I’d get upset with people for not realizing the nightmare I was living because of the demons targeting me and that I was some kind of chosen one. I thought people should be able to see this on their own or they weren’t worthy of being told so I never did tell anyone this. This went on for about 4-5 years until it just sort of went away and was replaced with some serious lack of motivation, emotionlessness, just not caring about anything anymore. I’ve had varying degrees of that since then. Does what I mentioned before that sound like psychosis to you?

A. You have described a number of symptoms that are characteristic of psychosis including ideas of reference (e.g. incorrectly interpreting events as having a particular meaning for you), grandiosity, odd beliefs and magical thinking, paranoid ideation, and behaving in odd or eccentric ways.

Those symptoms have diminished, but a new set of symptoms have emerged. These include feeling emotionless and lacking motivation. This new set of symptoms may be indicative of depression, side effects of medication, an adjustment to a life event, or a health problem.

Given your earlier symptoms, a diagnosis of schizophrenia would need to be investigated. However, the symptoms of psychosis are now gone and thus a diagnosis of schizophrenia may not be appropriate.

My recommendation is to seek a psychiatric evaluation from a mental health professional. The evaluator will collect an extensive psychosocial history which can determine what, if any, diagnosis is appropriate. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Mar 2014

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2014). Does This Sound Like Psychosis?. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 28, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2014/03/06/does-this-sound-like-psychosis/

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