I've long wished I had a friend with SZ. I have some of them online and that is wonderful....but I just really wish I knew someone in person to be able to relate to. It's like being the only caucasian or
African American on an island. Worse even ....because people of different races are essentially the same inside...But between me and everyone I know, there is a huge gap. And NO one that I know has any comprehension of what it's like on this side of it. It's very lonely. It's frustrating.
So I told this to my case worker, and he told me there is a day program not far from here for mentally ill people and that there are people with SZ there--and high functioning ones like me. I got very excited at first, but then reality struck. If I can't make it through a church service---even on a recliner--how would I last for a whole day at a day program? Ed thinks i may be able to attend even part time for one or two groups a week....and that sounds marvelous; even though is know it will be excruciating. I haven't heard anything more about it since we spoke of it...but I am seeing him this week and will definitely bring it up to him again.
I was thinking, even if I went...and met some people and we became friends...even if attending the program got to be too much for me; I could still maintain the friendships I made. I don't know. Maybe it will be nothing like what I'm thinking...but I do think I have a pretty good idea of what it is like. I attended at day program when I was in the group home for a couple of years. Granted, I HATED it then....but that's because I was very sick and was up to my neck in denial. I couldn't believe or accept that I belonged there or that those people had anything in common with me. What a snob I was!! Actually denial like that is part of the illness, schizophrenia....so it was not pure snobbery. I think that every other person in that day program was struggling with the same feelings.
That day program we called "Hitler's Day Camp" ...It was run by a man...George. Quite a character this guy was. He was merciless. And his greatest pleasure was suspending people from the program. I don't know why he never suspended me...I never ever went to the meetings...and if I did, I would walk out, five minutes into them. I think, looking back that George was not as tough as he liked to pretend to be....that that was his method of maintaining order. I do recall seeing a twinkle in his eyes on occasion...but he took great pains to hide that speck of humanity. Anyway. I hated being there.
I wanted nothing to do with the people (they used to call us "clients" , now they call us consumers, which is the stupidest name imaginable....as though we were shopping and doing that for fun and entertainment!) But now, in my 'old age' after meeting all kind of SZ's online., I am looking forward to this chance to interact with others.
Well, it's off to church for me now...I haven't been there in weeks. Am going to attempt to make it through the service. Blessings.