Here’s an admission not everyone is comfortable making: I have been known to hear voices from time to time.
It usually happens when I am extremely episodic (manic or in a mixed mania state) and I don’t hear “command” voices telling me to do things.
I experience voices as maybe a Snippet of a sentence, usually in a voice of someone friendly to me. I never “hear” a full sentence and I never really know exactly what the voice is referring to or “trying to say.”
It’s usually very random like “…to the store to pick up…” and that’s all I will hear. It’s very like suddenly the person blinked into my room like magic mid sentence and then blinked out again. I can always identify who I thought I heard, but then that person is nowhere near me.
I kind of liken it to when phones used to be less reliable and sometimes other people’s conversations would bleed in and you would hear little sections of their sentences. It’s very much like that.
For me, it’s just an annoyance and something that tells me, like a thermometer, how sick I am. I know that I am in trouble if this starts happening to me. It’s pretty rare.
I can’t imagine how terrifying it must be for people who hear voices that tell them things about themselves or that tell them to do things. That would be really difficult. I know people who live with voices on a pretty regular basis though and they tell me that it is something that they learn to live with.
Regardless, the stigma surrounding this kind of thing is real. I recently saw a game for sale in the store that had a cover that looked like this:
The implication here is not good.
Hopefully, people can learn that voices are not like movies and people can live lives despite them.
First image artwork by me.
Second image photo taken in store by me.