I don’t know what is happening to me. A month or two ago I started to panic about being out of work. I obsessed about it 24/7 and could not sleep, relax of concentrate on anything not even a tv show. Nothing seemed real. I could not tolerate feeling that way any longer and went to the Dr who gave me olanzapine of 5mg a night. This has helped take some of the anxiety away, but sometimes still feel like I am not real. Also when I listen to the radio or watch tv I get irritated and angry when I hear people talking about their successful lives. Is this a mental health problem or am I just a nasty jealous individual?
I feel like I am losing all feeling of self worth. I can’t even look at myself in the mirror now. What makes things even worse is some serious paranoia. Every time I hear a helicopter flying nearby I think that the police are watching me. If I see a strange car parked out back I think that the police are monitoring me. I can’t seem to shake these thoughts away. I just don’t know what to do any more. I have been unemployed for nearly 4 years, rarely leave my room and have no friends. Can you tell me if I am truly sick or is this just a phase that will go away on it’s own? (From England)Feeling Unreal and Irritated, Angry with Paranoia
Feeling Unreal and Irritated, Angry with Paranoia
I am sorry you are having to cope with these difficult symptoms. The first half of what you’ve said sounds like it is an exaggerated but fairly normal range if you are actually out of a job — but from what you are saying this condition has gone on for four years and has become paralyzing. This, combined with the fact that you are feeling paranoid, monitored, and reclusive means that it is time to take action. This is not going to go away on its own.
You have taken the first step by writing to us here. I would recommend that you add to this courageous act a visit to a psychiatrist. He or she can give you more feedback on these symptoms and offer some ideas about options for treatment.