I am afraid that people will see me talking to imaginary people. I often speak very animatedly to imaginary people that no one else can see. I wave my arms and nod my head. My mouth moves as if it was speaking. I am dead silent when I talk to imaginary people. To someone on the outside it looks as if I am acting crazy. How do you define crazy. Do you see me as a crazy person, psychotic even? I was at Starbucks a few weeks ago, somewhere between 5 AM and 6:30 AM, I was fighting myself hard to not talk to imaginary people. My mouth was closed, yet my mouth still spoke. If you were looking at me, then you would have seen me moving my mouth, lips shut, it would have been an odd sight I think to others to see a man visibly distraught and chewing. Of course I wasn’t chewing at all, I was just fighting hard to be normal, to look like a man sitting quietly in contemplative thought. I don’t know what anybody thought because how do you ask? Do you say, excuse me sir, did you notice me over by the fireplace acting kind of weird? If they say yes, do you mean, “oh, don’t worry sir, it’s just my mental illness”? Bet that would be awkward for everybody and if they said, “no I didn’t notice you until you asked”, wow, that would be even more awkward, because if they didn’t think you were weird before, they do now. That’s part of my mental illness, assuming that everybody notices me and that they feel that I’m crazy. I mean cmon, who would be comfortable in a room full of strangers while talking to imaginary people silently. I do my talking quietly, unfortunately for others, their talking is done out loud. Those poor unfortunates who speak out loud have an even harder time than me fitting in with the general public. I can’t imagine the pain of those who talk out loud, my silent talking is painful enough and sometimes I get caught by the public talking silently, I notice people staring sometimes. Am I crazy, no, I am suffering from a brain disorder called Bipolar disorder. I just want to be normal. That means having and enjoying peace and quiet without imaginary people intruding upon my conscious thoughts. I would like to be looked at only when someone finds an undefinable quality in me that they find attractive to themselves. I want to be physically active and have a 20 to 30 hour a week job and have more than one friend (I have a best friend now, but I believe that people should have several people to call upon for fun and in misfortune). For ordinary I would settle for a slightly messy house and car instead of the trash heaps of garbage that I live in now. I would like to be able to shower every other day, every day might be too much to ask for. I would love to have clean and fresh smelling clothes every day, except maybe weekends. It would be awesome to have an 50 gallon aquarium like I did as a kid and have the motivation to care for it. Be pretty neat to have a girlfriend (never had one), girls were attracted to me when I was a teen and in my early to mid-twenties before I became overweight thanks to Depakote, a mental health med. I have now been overweight almost as long as I was a healthy weight. Gee, there’s lots of ways that I would define normal. I can only describe normalcy for me, not for you. A good start would be to stop talking to imaginary people. A final note, there’s talking to yourself and talking to imaginary people. Everybody talks to themselves including me, it’s just that I talk to imaginary people more than I talk to myself. If all I ever did was to talk to myself I would be normal.
Nathaniel D. Homier
Bipolar with paranoid delusions and obsessive-compulsive disorder and is on the autism spectrum and is also Deaf/Hard of Hearing.