Saturday, September 16, 2006

Well, not for Joan D'Arc, it wasn't...

Can hearing voices in your head be a good thing?: "Can hearing voices in your head be a good thing?

Psychologists have launched a study to find out why some people who hear voices in their head consider it a positive experience while others find it distressing.

The University of Manchester investigation – announced on World Hearing Voices Day (Thursday, 14th September) – comes after Dutch researchers found that many healthy members of the population there regularly hear voices.

Although hearing voices has traditionally been viewed as 'abnormal' and a symptom of mental illness, the Dutch findings suggest it is more widespread than previously thought, estimating that about 4% of the population could be affected.

Researcher Aylish Campbell said: 'We know that many members of the general population hear voices but have never felt the need to access mental health services; some experts even claim that more people hear voices and don't seek psychiatric help than those who do."

I think you'd have to be crazy to seek psychiatric help for voices in your head. They'd have to be pretty damn loud and hateful before it's worth taking anti-psychotics to shut them up.

For myself, "hearing voices" is routine. I am, after all, Multiple. But I treat the voices in my head the same way as I treat the ones outside - if they make sense, I pay attention; if they don't, I say progressively cleverly rude things until they retreat in disarray.

Oh, yeah, and I forgot. I AM one of those voices. We are all very egalitarian here...

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