Schizophrenia in The Center Cannot Hold by Elyn Saks

1580 Words7 Pages

“This experience is much harder, and weirder, to describe than extreme fear or terror, most people know what it is like to be seriously afraid. If they haven’t felt it themselves, they’ve at least seen a movie, or read a book, or talked to a frightened friend – they can at least imagine it. But explaining what I’ve come to call ‘disorganization’ is a different challenge altogether. Consciousness gradually loses its coherence, one’s center gives away. The center cannot hold. The ‘me’ becomes a haze, and the solid center from which one experiences reality breaks up like a bad radio signal. (Saks, p. 13)” These words are the description of schizophrenia, written by a woman who was diagnosed with schizophrenia, Elyn Saks. Her
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(Saks, p. 3)” Another example of this “But nefarious things are going on. I’ve been cornered and the points are pointed. There’s an effort under way to kill me. (Saks, p. 141) Or that she was evil, “Food is evil. And anyway, I don’t deserve to have any. I am evil too, and food would only nourish me. Does it make sense to you to nourish evil? No it does not. (Saks, p. 79)” Another positive symptom is disordered thinking and speech. Saks displayed symptoms of loose association, “Fresh tasting lemon juice naturally. There’s a natural volcano. They put it in my head. It’s erupting. I’ve killed lots of people. I’ve killed children. There’s a flower on the bookshelf. I can see it booming. Have you killed anyone, Richard? (Saks, p. 141)” She displayed symptoms of clang, “They’re jumping around. I used to be good at the broad jump, because I’m tall. I fall. People put things in and then say it’s my fault. I used to be God, but I got demoted. (Saks, p. 3) Saks also displayed neologisms, heightened perceptions, hallucinations inappropriate affect, disorganized motor disturbances, and psychomotor symptoms. Elyn also displayed cognitive symptoms as well. Research has found that numerous individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia might not show any symptoms and others, like Saks, can lead normal and productive lives. (Park & Sung, 2013)I think what hit me the hardest when reading about her episodes, was that she could see that what she was doing was scaring her friends and the
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