Hi. I wanted to ask a question about how to deal with a situation that seems to be ongoing or at least it seems like it is (possible I might be paranoid too). I recently have been hearing people [strangers] around me insult my appearance, specifically my body image. I am not unhealthy, but I am not extremely fit either. Many times it seems people have been calling me ugly behind my back, or even yelling at me across the street, calling me that. I try to not let this get to me, but it is becoming so frequent that it has been putting me in a “bluesy” almost depressive mood and I do not know what to do. I have to started to feel hopeless and my routine is going out of whack. I know I should love myself and in some ways I do, but I can only stay strong for so long before all I hear in my own head is that. I do not understand why people have to be so cruel, especially at my age. Can you give me some advice on how to dig myself out of this rut? I would greatly appreciate it. (age 21, from US)Tired of Being Insulted
Tired of Being Insulted
Thanks for writing in with this interesting question. How you should respond depends on whether these comments you are hearing are real or imagined. Although there certainly are rude people in the world, I find it unusual that you are hearing these comments as often as you describe and they are always about your body image. I’d suggest that you do a test by having someone you trust, such as a close friend or family member, walk with you as often as possible and see if they also hear the comments.
Auditory hallucinations can be linked to various things and diagnoses, both medical and psychological. I think it would be a good idea to schedule both a physical and psychiatric evaluation. Be sure to be completely honest about yourself such as recent medication changes, drug and alcohol use, sleep problems, and food intake so they can help you pinpoint the problem. I hope this resolves for you soon.
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts