Citation: Oblivion. "My Psychotic Episode: An Experience with Olanzapine (exp41305)". Erowid.org. Mar 6, 2007. erowid.org/exp/41305
I have been using 10mg Olanzapine a day following a psychotic episode brought on by a few bad acid and ecstasy trips that happened over a year ago now. Since then, I have been slowly working towards reintegrating myself back into normal life, and it has to be said that the Olanzapine has helped a lot.
It all started after a few bad acid trips, but, not wanting to be disparaged from something that a lot of other people seem to consider a great and mind opening thing, decided to persist with hallucinogenic drugs - something which, looking back, was probably not the wisest idea.
I started becoming very intense around everyone I met, not yet in an intolerable way, but in a 'you need to chill out man' sort of way. My ego was also getting a bit out of hand, but that was of little concern - what was of concern was that I was becoming increasingly incapable of handling relaxed situations.
After a while I could no longer handle taking ecstacy any more, without feeling that the entire club knew who I was. I could no longer function on weed, speed made me tired and I was starting to require alcohol every day just to keep the paranoia at bay. The only drugs that didn't give me a sense of nuclear paranoia were cocaine and valium, both of which I had a feeling it would be a bad idea to get into a habit of taking considering my mental state at the time.
But then it got worse. I decided to take mushrooms one night with a few friends, thinking the worst was over - oh no. When I got back to the flat I had this terrible feeling of dread, that no amount of alcohol would make go away, so I decided to go to bed instead. I suddenly heard a loud voice, which I knew was in my head, saying to me 'TONIGHT, YOU ARE GOING TO DIE'. Naturally, I was quite disappointed - I had always forseen living quite a bit past 20, but then it continued, '...AND YOU'RE GOING TO HELL'.
That was it, I had to leave the flat and seriously rethink my life. While I was having this heavy discussion with myself, one of my friends called to see what this was up to. Taking this as a sign, I decided to go round and visit them. When I got back to the flat, my crazy flatmates had kicked a hole in one of the doors in the flat and done something unspeakable in the kitchen - not something you wanna have to deal with with a head full of mushrooms.
The same thing happened again when I took mushrooms a couple of weeks later - a demon from hell was gonna come and kill me and take me to the dark side. This time it didn't concern me so much and I just went down stairs where people were drinking tea.
After that I (finally) decided trippy drugs were not for me and that stopping drinking for a few days would 'totally sort me out'. Unfortunately, this was not the case - I had to quit my job at a call centre because all the calls were freaking me out, we got evicted from the flat because we were refusing to pay rent because the place was such a mess, I was getting no work done at uni and I could not focus on anything.
We moved to a new flat, but by this time I could not walk down the street without the feeling my presence could be felt within a two mile radius. I did training for new bar that was opening up, but got fired on the opening night before the place had actually opened - the manager did not give me a reason. By this time I was convinced that my life was in serious danger - totally irrelevant experiences from my past kept flashing before my eyes and alcohol was becoming a total necessity rather than a luxury.
This continued until towards the end of 2003 when I was starting to believe that the world was going to end at new year 2004, that I was on a mission from God and that a demon was trying to suck out my soul to stop me - listening to myself, I decided that people who think like this generally require help. I figured that whatever psychiatrist I saw would be God in human form and that (s)he would tell me what to do.
Nothing happened at new year 2004, except that my level of paranoia had grown so great that the majority of my friends no longer wanted to talk to me. I spent new years day in my room scrawling on an old envelope and couldn't talk to my family. It was probably the worst day I will ever have in my life.
I saw the psychiatrist a few days later and he told me I was suffering from a 'drug induced psychosis' and prescribed me some risperidone. Almost immediately, I felt my thoughts actually starting to reconnect again, but risperidone causes horrible muscle tension so the psychiatrist changed my prescription to Olanzapine instead.
Olanzapine as a drug has no noticeable effects, apart from the fact that it makes me really hungry (I've gained about 15-20lbs since I started taking it, although I also no longer take ecstacy every week) and really tired, but not in a valium sort of way, more in a 'I can't keep my eyes open' sort of way. However, when I forget to take it, I notice myself drifting back to my alternative reality again, which just ain't fun.
15 months after starting the Olanzapine, I can interact with the real world to a much greater extent, I am doing an art course (one good thing about a psychotic episode is that it does brilliant things for my creativity), although I do still like to have the music playing a bit louder and faster than the rest of the room do, so to speak.
Overall, I gotta say that when it comes to 'mind opening' drugs, even though a lot of my friends still take them, the advice has to be 'stay away from the flipside'. I am finding refinding my sanity to be a far more satisfying and rewarding experience than any psychoactive.
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