Wednesday, April 26, 2006

You may have read my previous posting about my interdisciplinary training program, but we got to have the experience of being in a wheel chair. In this class, we learn about different disabilities and we sometimes get to go through simulation experiences so we have a little bit of understanding what it would be like to have a disability.

Last week we learned what it would be like to have a mental disability (like schizophrenia). We got to go through the Hearing Voices Simulation. Basically, it was the “voices in my head” simulation. This is where we got to put on head phones and listen to a simulation of what some one that hears voices might hear on a regular basis. We weren't allowed to talk about what we were hearing with anyone at the time because hearing voices is a very personal thing. While we were listening to the voices we had to do some lovely cognitive tasks like reading an article and then answering some reading comprehension questions about it. We were suppose to put a bunch of toothpicks in a certain shape and then change it by only removing a certain number of toothpicks (personally I don't think I could have done that with or without voices, I'll leave the confusing puzzles to Jim). Then the person putting together the presentation gave us a psychiatric exam, which we all failed (mostly because the stupid voices kept drowning out everything else). Then we were suppose to socialize with the other IDT trainees while still hearing the head phones. We were still not allowed to talk about what our voices were saying, but now that I'm not hearing them anymore (at least not from the head set).

The voices were weird. There were a couple of people in the back ground that were whispering in a way that I couldn't understand what they were saying. There was some kind of heart beat sound in the beginning. Some lady started to tell me that I was the "one" and that everybody believed in me. Then this rude guy started to tell me that I smell like @#$# and that everybody was looking at me and knew what I did. That voice was a little psychotic. He kept swearing at me and yelling at me while the two that I couldn’t understand kept talking in the background, laughing at me.

It was kind of weird. I had a hard time talking to anyone because I couldn't hear them and I was a little distracted. I'm just glad the voices in my head did argue with the voices on the recorder. That would have been really disturbing.

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