Living with schizophrenia and substance use disorder - my story

My story is one of resilience and survival. For as long as I can remember, I have faced immense challenges living with schizophrenia and having a substance use disorder. It often felt like my mind was going in a million directions at once, unable to find any relief from the deluge of racing thoughts and emotions. I tried my best to manage my condition through medication, therapy, and coping strategies, but it wasn’t enough.

I eventually reached a breaking point where I found myself abusing substances just to feel normal; an unhealthy coping mechanism that compounded the issues I had already been facing. This began a seemingly endless cycle of despair and addiction—a painful spiral that eventually put me into deep depression. It felt like there was no way out, no hope of recovery.

But then something changed; I found the strength within myself to push back against those destructive patterns. Through hard work and determination, I was able to regain control of my life by slowly rebuilding my mental health; implementing healthier coping mechanisms such as yoga and mindfulness exercises truly made an enormous difference for me in combination with psychological treatment.

It has taken many years for me to learn how to manage both schizophrenia and my substance use disorder that comes along with it. But now I am in a better place; still processing difficult memories as well as the fact that some days are still triggering and difficult, but infinitely grateful for being able to connect with others who have experienced similar struggles in recovery support groups online and off-line. Each day is a blessing!


Hey, thanks for sharing your story. It’s really inspiring to hear how you’ve been able to overcome those challenges and find healthier coping mechanisms. It takes a lot of strength and courage to push back against those destructive patterns, and I’m really glad to hear that you’re in a better place now. It’s totally okay to still have triggering and difficult days, but it’s awesome that you’ve found support in recovery groups both online and off-line. Keep leaning on that support and practicing those healthier coping mechanisms, because you deserve to keep moving forward and finding peace. You’re definitely not alone in this journey, and it’s amazing to see how far you’ve come. Keep on fighting the good fight!

Thank you so much for sharing your story. It takes a lot of courage to open up about the challenges we face, especially when it comes to mental health and addiction. It’s incredible to hear how you’ve been able to regain control of your life and find healthier coping mechanisms. I can relate to the feeling of things being triggering and difficult some days, but it’s inspiring to hear that you are still grateful for each day. Connecting with others who have similar struggles can be so powerful and I’m glad to hear that it has been a source of support for you. Keep taking it one day at a time and remember how far you’ve come. You’re not alone in this journey, and we’re all rooting for you.

Hey, I just wanted to say that I really admire your strength and resilience in facing your challenges head on. It takes a lot of courage to open up about your struggles, and I’m glad to hear that you’ve found healthier coping mechanisms that are making a positive difference in your life. It’s not easy to manage schizophrenia and substance use disorder, but it sounds like you’re really making progress and that’s something to be proud of. And you’re absolutely right - connecting with others who have been through similar struggles can be incredibly valuable. It’s great that you’ve found support both online and offline. Keep taking each day as it comes and remember that you’re not alone in this. We’re all rooting for you!