May 11, 2005

I wonder if medicine studies is common in schizophrenia recovery

My best advice for a person with schizophrenia is to study medicine. But not as a job but as a way to learn to look after one's self. I did this sort of early on in my schizophrenia career. In my first hospitalisation in 1980, I was in a teaching hospital. I had grown up very near to this hospital, on the university campus, I was both raised at, studied at for one year and had worked at part-time for three years. I had of course wanted to go to the medical school when young and still solidly middle class. If the campus had had a law school or computer science program at the time my course choices would have been much different. I never did though complete medical courses.

But back to my story about that early hospitalisation. When I was allowed off ward privilges I wondered around the hospital corridors some days. The corridors were carpetted and had irregular tiled walls. The grey cement tiles were almost half a meter square and poked out in pyramids at points along the hall. The outside of the building consisted of grey concrete slabs with glass towers at numerous points. This was typical of the avant guard inspired architecture of the late 1960's in many Western countries. It was later considered oppressive and boring architecture. I though of this building as being like the Andromeda Strain movie set or the space ships in the Space 1999 TV show.

Anyways long story short there was a medical school library where I went and read early as a student; and now that I was ill but on the beginning of the long road to recovery I also read there. I still feel a strange ethereal essence when ever I read a medical journal or medical books although recently as I actually gain skills in first aid and first responder techniques I also have strange no longer ethereal feeling but instead a quick and bloddy mess essence comes from the titles of books about emergency medicine.

I wonder how many other fellow and sister consumers have learned medicine along their paths to recovery.

Posted by petert at May 11, 2005 12:24 AM


Hi Pete

I studied at medical school for 2 years but my final degree was in biochemistry. Later I did a masters in neuroscience. It has helped me understand a bit but also made me more able to question doctors as I know they don't know as much as they pretend to. I have become friends with my ex-psychiatrist indirectly through this. I think I am doing better than those I was in hospital and drop-ins with 10 years ago. I don' think it matters so much what you study so long as you try to keep mentally active.


Posted by: tinted at May 13, 2005 12:01 AM

I have severe Bipolar Disorder type I which is a Schizophrenia spectrum disorder. I wanted to go into clinical pathology, but I couldn't even stay stable long enough to graduate high school. I never thought about my interest in medicine and the help it has given me along the 'journey' until I came across this site while googling for medical information I need for my book. Somehow medicine creeps into everything I write even if it is a character doing an introspective psychological analysis. Medicine teaches to see where we are, our limitations, and what is possible. You know what they say about an 'Apple' a day...writing is my medicine--the Apple computer helps too.

Posted by: Joy Dodd at July 24, 2005 01:29 AM

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