November 16, 2007

Kristin Bell: A Chronicle of Living With Schizophrenia

Kristin Bell, a 34-year-old woman who suffers from schizophrenia, can be seen on the Internet chronicling her experiences with the illness. Ms. Bell's videos, which appear on YouTube, describe not only her personal experiences with the symptoms of schizophrenia, but also her efforts to educate the public about the illness in general. We've been impressed by how well she communicates in her videos (very clear and professional) and we think you will be too.

Ms. Bell, a self-described "professional student," has been in college for the past several years because of the difficulties she has as a result of schizophrenia. In addition to being a student, she seems to have at least one job, and according to one of her videos, also does volunteer work.

Recently, Ms. Bell has created a new video blog (vlog for short) called KristinOnMeds (she has two vlogs on YouTube). On KristinOnMeds, she describes in-detail her current experiences in living with schizophrenia. In her other vlog she discusses aspects of her life such as work, volunteering, school, etc. Ms. Bell also has a blog.

Ms. Bell developed her first symptoms of schizophrenia at the age of 15, and experienced her first psychotic breakdown at 16. Judging from the positive comments on YouTube, her willingness to share her experiences on the Internet is appreciated by many people.

The first part of a trio of videos Kristin Bell did on schizophrenia:

The second of the trio:

The Last of the Trio

Kristin Bell on YouTube: As User ichbinkeinberliner and on the new Channel KristinOnMeds

Kristin Bell's Website

We encourage other people suffering from schizophrenia to chronicle their experiences in blogs and via youtube videos. Please notify us if you'd like us to mention a chronicle of your story. Contact us at


What a lovely woman Kristin is. I encourage everyone to watch her videos.

Thanks Kristin! You are amazing!

Posted by: twinb1957 at November 17, 2007 10:39 AM

Hey , I think your video is great!

Posted by: karolina at November 17, 2007 12:07 PM

I have exchanged emails with her several times on youtube , there are several people with schizophrenia on the tube that have good vlogs

Posted by: Salty davis at November 17, 2007 04:26 PM

The videos are good.

Posted by: TJ at November 17, 2007 04:52 PM

i am suffering from schizophrenia since i was 14 years old,now i am 30 years old.i live in india,lucknow.

Posted by: abc at November 18, 2007 10:29 PM

Hi Everyone! Thank you for the nice comments! I appreciate it! Feel free to visit me any time on youtube or at my blog site! If I can help you out in any way, just let me know. I'll do what I can! :)

Posted by: Kristin Bell at November 19, 2007 07:52 PM

"I think you are very brave to make these videos and it is wonderful to see you and to hear you speak." My son is diagnosed as sufferring from schizophrenia, and after 19 odd years, I see he still has difficuly accepting this, and constantly goes through the 'revovling door' of being on medication, and then coming off abruptly." "Coming off abruptly means he suffers neuroleptic shock, and this can often seem like a psychotic relapse, when in fact it may be abrupt drug withdrawal symproms, rather like DT's from abrupt alchohol withdrawal, or the symptoms from abrupt heroin withdrawal etc." I live alone and am unable to have him live with me, so he is now homeless, and has been for the last seven years. It tears my heart apart. He is in hospital again at the moment, and as I sit and listen to his ramblings, I hear words of his 'truth' come out, such as last night, him saying 'my life doesn't work for me, my housing doesn't work for me, nobody cares, it is a question of compassion', and, 'I feel so pyschotic mum', but he tells me how much he loves me, and I know he does, as I love him. What a shame it is not enough. I feel very sad, very often. Please keep well lovely lady.

Posted by: Sue Calvo at November 20, 2007 02:04 AM

I have uploaded several videos on youtube regarding this subject. Please look up the username devito666 in youtube.

thank you.

Posted by: Alexander at November 20, 2007 06:20 AM

Kristin's videos are really worth watching. They contain loads of information, and are also incredibly intimate. You feel as if you are sitting having a coffee and a chat with her! She is also very friendly and helpful to other YouTube users.

Posted by: Janine at November 20, 2007 12:04 PM

Kristin has inspired me for the past year and continues to give me hope! Thanks Kristin for your courage and determination to educate us all, in addition to sharing her very personal experiences with us. Thanks Kristin, I love you!

Posted by: Caroline at November 21, 2007 05:21 AM

In case you did not get this
on your other sight,

Here is a poem tribute
to all schizophrenics out

I too am diagnosed with this.

Hang in there you all.
I’ve been trying for months to hold this job down so dear
My boss has been flexing for me to stay here.

Between the headaches, and stomach, and rape feelings decay
I try to get my work down, man, another hard day.

Still the night before I go to bed by 10pm, hoping to get 8 hours sleep in.
Reality sets in and pain and noise commence, oh no it 4am and still I haven’t rest.

I go to work on 4 hours sleep, I’m late again and I feel like a creep.
The boss is away so she won’t know; I try to make up the hours as the day goes.

During the day I have pain in my chest, not enough to quit but enough for unrest.
Then my head starts hurting like a migraine gone haywire
My passion, my goals, falling away, I’m on fire.

The next hour is okay, just some voices in my head. I submit a candidate for a job
Maybe this one would stick.

He does and our client is happy indeed but sends us the paperwork we need to fill in.
At that moment I’m doubled over at my desk, I know this is due but I can’t move.

The clock ticks and tocks and time goes by. I manage the paperwork but sometimes
Ask why?

Should people suffer pain shooting through the roof?
When this happens, on paperwork I do goof.

I am dedicated and hoping this will pass
How long will this happen? How long will this last?

My colleagues are concerned and like me a lot
But even they can’t save my job when my efficiency is in the pot.

Thank goodness the day ends and I can go home and see
The best part of my life happening to me.

My husband, his kids, our dogs and our life
This part of my day makes me forget about my strife.

Accept once home I’m really tired out
I can’t stay up one ounce longer or I will surely pout.

Why is crying so bad, I do not know
I’d rather my family sees me when I glow

They don’t need to know the obstacles I go through
I’m already hurting, they don’t have to too.

When my youngest asks to play, on days I feel bad
I have to tell her no and then we both feel bad.

But she’s getting to know how serious this is
And having a great attitude about it really helps me.

I wish I could snap my fingers and be like anyone else
Have a chance at a real life full of NORMAL strife.

But God seems to think I can serve in some way
I just want out of this agreement some days.

Posted by: Brenda again at November 28, 2007 08:11 PM

I must be chatty tongiht.

I went 1 year without meds and wrote these poems, but
the pain/voices/noises/ crickets, sirons, etc. got
the best of me and i'm trying to go back on medication.

I wrote a book in november full of 50 poems who tell
a story of my losing my job.
and venting about that, reflecting about that, and plainly describing it in metaphorical terms which rhymed.

That poem I sent, was one of many. I feel privledged god
gave me the ability to write it.

I know ,, sometimes it hurts
so bad, emotionally, people don't look at you the same if
they know, I felt I lost credibility and reliability etc..

Posted by: Brenda again at November 28, 2007 08:38 PM

This one is for moms and dad,
This one is for boyfriends/girlfriends

this on is for husbands and wives.

I understand. My husband can't even tell his mom and dad my diagnoses. He just says I'm sick most days.

He's awfully embarrassed, and so were we when we were diagnosed. Keeping this in the
closet and dealing out best.
Is not a fun test.

Here is a poem for all of you
who are confused what to do.

I hope it helps. I have been this way for 10 years but have been able to make some kind of money for 9 of them. It got exceedingly bad when I got married. NOt sure why.

Here's the poem.

We are all the same
No matter if we are healthy or have illness

We all work off of what makes us tick
This can be done with everyone, everyone has a wick

Schizophrenics have these wicks removed and often brood
Anyone would grieve when their dreams was taken from them
You are not special because you are not diaganosed
You are just saved from many mental tests, and in my case
Physical test.

So how to we close the gap between normal people and “Schizophrenic”

We have to realize first we are all not that different and given the same
Input as a schizophrenic is given, we would act the same.

We need to cut them some slack and love til it hurts.
They do, you have no idea how much slack they cut for you

So give them the respect they are closer to Jesus
Loving you no matter how you attack, loving you no matter how they react
It hurts so bad to lose respect of others
It’s a grieving process until the next obstacle comes.

It’s like learning lifes lessons in 10 years instead of a 100
This fast growing process gives the schizophrenic a feeling of being
Better than another. If they let it. They shouldn’t though.

Just because we have been tested in morals, just because we have been tested in coral
Just because we have been tested with pain, does not mean we are better than our fellow man.

We need to stay focused and just go with the flow
We need to stay focused and let our families know.

That we love them very much and without them we are nothing
We’re trying out best with what been given by god.

We would not do this on purpose just to laze around.
We have ambition and that hurts us the most.

Everytime we start a job, a hobby, or more
Pain or voices attack and we need help we emplore

How can we work when we’re filled with such emotion
Guilt for past wrongs, regrets of what was said, wanting to take back

So cut us some slack because we sure do.
We love you and are glad you stick to us like glue.

Posted by: Brenda again at December 1, 2007 07:38 PM

We did not ask for this.
And it has taken my goals.

Think how that must feel even
if you think how can this be?

We are not trying on purpose
to lose our jobs.

I tried for 6 months to work with voices and pain.

I could not hold the job even
though my boss was great.

We are still good friends.

It does not make up for it as I was engrained growing up that is where the respect is at, that is where my character is at. Without making something of myself I am nothing.

That's how we feel and I guess some go into depression.

We all would. You would.

We are trying our best.
This is not like anything
we've ever encountered before.

It takes a while to get used
to the idea that you have to
go with the flow.

Most of us are goal oriented and that just does not compute.

Not fun. Hope this helps understand us.

Feel free to write me and ask questions. Though I can only answer as to what I've been through.

Posted by: Brenda again at December 1, 2007 07:42 PM

Tistening to an angel,a tale of a curse.
Touching the core of heart,melting all burden
A teacher of lord explains a true life poetry,
Taught me a puzzle,relieve my pain and for others.
She is an angel for those who left alone
oh dear angel,u r not alone.

Posted by: Kasim Abu Ghalib at January 6, 2008 06:40 AM

I have a brother, 26, who has struggled with schizophrenia for 5 years. During the last year and a half, he has diligently worked hard to try to find the correct combo of meds. He is now finally at a point where he lives alone, has a part time job, and is doing well-however, he has recently expressed to me his voices are proving to be too much for him to handle. I want to help so bad and am hoping that someone on this blog might know-what are some coping strategies I can suggest to him for how to deal with hearing his demeaning, derogatory voices? He knows they will never go away completely...but wants at least a little relief. He has been on the same combo of meds for about a year now. Any advice is appreciated :)

Posted by: Shannon at January 10, 2008 07:37 PM

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