Is It Real? Doubt And Hearing Voices

On the bus earlier, there was a couple whispering a few rows behind me. It freaked me the fuck out. Why? It reminded me of the voices I hear. The cruel, whispering words that shake me to my core.

I often hear whispering when I’m depressed, they’re malicious and make me feel extremely vulnerable. I feel out of control, like there is nowhere safe for me to go, because the voices I can’t escape, as they’re all in my head. I’ve had voices where I can make out what they’re saying, others I can’t. The kind of things they say are vicious. They prey on my insecurities and might even tell me to hurt myself.

When I can’t make out what they’re saying, weirdly, it’s worse. The mumbling and whispering scares me because they could be saying anything. My imagination runs wild. The experience feels ethereal, other worldly and there is the constant fear that suddenly a word will jump out from through the mumbling. That word could be a shout or a scream, directed straight at me.

The latter is what it felt like on the bus. The couple that were whispering, I couldn’t make out what they were saying. Then comes the paranoia. Is it that couple that are whispering, really? Or is it my own mind tricking me. If I could’ve heard their conversation, it would have put my mind at rest. Only hearing snippets of words, a quiet chuckle here and there really made me feel on edge.

Since I’ve been more aware of what I hear (I was in denial for years) I often doubt the world around me. If I hear a strange tapping, a voice, a shout out of nowhere I can’t stop but think if it’s real or from inside my own mind. It definitely disrupts my day to day life. I have to think rationally about what’s happening. It’s a difficult process, but I’m learning to manage the thoughts that accompany hearing voices.

On the bus, I reminded myself that those voices can’t hurt me and I’m stronger than them. It turned out it was the couple behind me and not an episode of psychosis. When I got off the bus it was a huge relief, but I still felt insecure and vulnerable.

It’s important to talk about these experiences, and I will vent on twitter and to my partner or close friends. Hearing voices for me is an insular experience, I’m the only person that is experiencing these exact sounds and voices. No one else will. So I find it vital to open up about what it’s like in those moments. Find someone you trust, that’s non judgmental, that you can show vulnerability to. It will make a huge difference.

3 thoughts on “Is It Real? Doubt And Hearing Voices

  1. Wendy

    thank you for sharing this part of you, it gives me more of a sense of what it is like.
    I’ve only heard voices twice during a bipolar mixed mania episode, it was almost ethereal, and as if the people where just out of site. But they don’t show up often, I knew they were not real, or I was pretty sure. I can’t imagine what you must feel. Again, thank you for giving testimony to your experiences. best to you wendy


  2. Tomas Koster

    Thanks! I told my Psychologist today about 4 or 5 years ago I worked in Sales and did a lot of driving locally in Chicago. For a month I heard voices. Now they were more like thoughts. I heard them when
    it was silent. When driving they told me to drive into the back of a semi truck. Run into a concrete barrier, etc. But when I saw a customer it was as usual. As soon as I was alone they would almost taunt me. So
    I dealt with it, then after a month they went away. My psychologist told me that I may have Schizophrenic tendencies. I disagree as I see all the comments. These things are part of the BiPolar Disorder too. It’s only happened once to me, just that month. Very strange.


  3. Ubishere

    I have heard voices for about 20 years, although I have often wondered if I should have been diagnosed with Schizophrenia by the doctor I never have. I hear voices regularly but very rarely fell they get the better of me. When I get very stressed and feel low is when they can really start attacking particularly when a social situation feels threatening.

    My method in these circumstances is to fight back – I find fighting fire with fire works although it can take a long while and difficult to motivate yourself. Sometimes I wonder if these voices are coming from other people like myself and try talk to them as if they were angry children. At other times I may go full out angry and swear back at them.

    Today I heard a voice pop of nowhere saying “I have a feeling that this may not be a good idea” – this type of voice intrigues me and I would nearly always ask a question in my mind back like “what isn’t a good idea?”. Unfortunately after many years I don’t often get an answer or any reply that makes sense.


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