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Heavy on my chest tonight...


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Could my friend be nuts? He said he believed he was being gangstalked? What can I say besides it sounds absolutely bizzare first of all and hard to believe. He was offended and upset after I suppose my reaction wasnt understanding at all, but he was so sad the last time I seen him, I feel bad and like im wrong? What can I do.

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Have you noticed a pattern of outlandish and dramatic things happening to him? If it happens all the time it could be tall tales. The question of how to respond though remains a mystery to me. Presume that your friend at least believes what they are saying, then you can imagine why they would be hurt when you respond like you don’t believe them.

 

Regardless of if he is or isn’t lying maybe diving down the rabbit hole of internet advice on how to cope with having close friends or family who are pathological liars could yield some helpful ideas.

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I had to google gangstalking. The information I found does indicate that gangstalking is a symptom of mental illness, specifically schizophrenia:

 

In the pre-internet era, people with severe undiagnosed or undertreated schizophrenia usually withdrew from society and had no voice in their communities — they certainly didn’t communicate at length with others in the same situation.

 

But that changed with the internet.

 

Now, people with delusions could share their personal experiences on blogs and internet forums. With time and luck, they found each other and built internet-based communities to interact with each other.

 

In the quest to explain their paranoia, the newly-organized group of interneters-with-delusions began constructing a collective narrative that eventually bloomed into a full-legged conspiracy theory, or at least a cluster of semi-legged conspiracy theories.

 

https://medium.com/bigger-picture/gangstalking-a-new-type-of-internet-conspiracy-cult-ab0a4fc7b85c

 

If you care about your friend you have to be less reactive. He's most likely struggling with something, and upsetting him will just make things worse.

 

I do understand your strong feelings. When I was in my early 20s, I came into contact with two people who were schizophrenic, and the experiences were upsetting to me. It actually made me angry to see their mental illness. As I've gotten older and wiser, I see that my reactions were fear-based and unnecessary. It would have been better for everyone if I had been more sympathetic. Those people never hurt me, or anyone.

 

In the article I referenced above, there is a video where a schizophrenic woman is being interviewed. She gives some insight into what it's like to have this mental illness, and some advice on how to handle someone who has it. She suggests not challenging the delusions when you notice them.

 

It might help you to search for firsthand accounts by people who struggle with this mental illness. The first one that comes to mind is Bethany Yeiser's, but I know there are others:

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5581912/

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I know that when I first met him, he had a gf whose family was threatening him and saying they would put a hit out on him. They didnt want him with their daughter. I think he has allowed the wrong people in his life as to some of the people in my opinion messed with his head. He is very different know and he has shared that he thinks developed PTSD to some extent and if occurrences I guess trigger him, he then can become to me as I said more bizarre. He has said he thinks so black and white that its all or nothing. From his mother he has ADHD as the only mental disorder from a doctor. He just thinks no one is good anymore. And overanalyzes many things and there have been times I have thought he is schizophrenic. He swears he doesnt see or hear things that aren't there. Could it be trauma based and between his mental health or is it common for people to be like this with schizophrenia?

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Psychotic episodes, replete with (paranoid) delusions are present in many situations from primary thought disorders, to substance abuse to manic episodes to a variety of neuropsychiatric issues. He needs to see a physician.

Could it be trauma based and between his mental health or is it common for people to be like this with schizophrenia?
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I know that when I first met him, he had a gf whose family was threatening him and saying they would put a hit out on him. They didnt want him with their daughter. I think he has allowed the wrong people in his life as to some of the people in my opinion messed with his head. He is very different know and he has shared that he thinks developed PTSD to some extent and if occurrences I guess trigger him, he then can become to me as I said more bizarre. He has said he thinks so black and white that its all or nothing. From his mother he has ADHD as the only mental disorder from a doctor. He just thinks no one is good anymore. And overanalyzes many things and there have been times I have thought he is schizophrenic. He swears he doesnt see or hear things that aren't there. Could it be trauma based and between his mental health or is it common for people to be like this with schizophrenia?

 

His mother may not have disclosed to you the full extent of his mental disorders, as it is really nobody's business but theirs.

 

Alternatively, it is possible for a mentally disordered person deceive a psychology professional. Having a mental illness doesn't mean you are completely without mental faculty. Mentally ill people are often aware that something is wrong with their thought processes, and it is common for them to try to hide it.

 

In the interview I referenced above, the schizophrenic woman deliberately mislead her therapist about her symptoms, resulting in a misdiagnosis of Bipolar. She eventually did get honest with her therapist, but only after she decided to do so. As a result of her honesty, she received the correct diagnosis, and received effective treatment.

 

I don't know enough about psychology to be able to tell you what is common with regard to trauma and/or schizophrenia. All I can suggest is that you be sympathetic to his distress. It's what friends do for each other.

 

Avoid prying into his personal life. It is ok to be concerned, but your friend and his family are not answerable to you. Questioning his mother and/or him about his mental state and/or whether he has hallucinations is disrespectful and frankly not your place.

 

If you are worried that he is going to harm himself or somebody else, notify the authorities. Unless you are a professional, the only support you can really provide is sympathy. If you are uncomfortable around him, consider distancing yourself and possibly ending the friendship.

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His mother may not have disclosed to you the full extent of his mental disorders, as it is really nobody's business but theirs.

 

Alternatively, it is possible for a mentally disordered person deceive a psychology professional. Having a mental illness doesn't mean you are completely without mental faculty. Mentally ill people are often aware that something is wrong with their thought processes, and it is common for them to try to hide it.

 

In the interview I referenced above, the schizophrenic woman deliberately mislead her therapist about her symptoms, resulting in a misdiagnosis of Bipolar. She eventually did get honest with her therapist, but only after she decided to do so. As a result of her honesty, she received the correct diagnosis, and received effective treatment.

 

I don't know enough about psychology to be able to tell you what is common with regard to trauma and/or schizophrenia. All I can suggest is that you be sympathetic to his distress. It's what friends do for each other.

 

Avoid prying into his personal life. It is ok to be concerned, but your friend and his family are not answerable to you. Questioning his mother and/or him about his mental state and/or whether he has hallucinations is disrespectful and frankly not your place.

 

If you are worried that he is going to harm himself or somebody else, notify the authorities. Unless you are a professional, the only support you can really provide is sympathy. If you are uncomfortable around him, consider distancing yourself and possibly ending the friendship.

 

Great advice!

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