Living with schizophrenia: Perspectives of Turkish people with schizophrenia from two Patient Associations on how the illness affects their lives

Karancı, Ayşe Nuray
Kumpasoğlu, Güler Beril
Can, Demet
Cakir, Ekin
Karaaslan, Cemrenur
Semerci, Mine
Tuzun, Duygu
Background: Schizophrenia is a chronic mental illness affecting the social and occupational lives of the sufferers and posing a considerable burden on the patients and their families. Furthermore, negative societal reactions and the internalization of these attitudes exacerbate the difficulties encountered. This study examines the perspectives of Turkish people with schizophrenia on how they view the impact of the illness on their lives, the societal reactions and attitudes to schizophrenia and whether they agree with these reactions. Methods: Twenty-three adult participants, all members of two schizophrenia associations in Ankara, capital of Turkey, were recruited. Semistructured interviews were used to find out their perspectives on how the illness affected their lives, how the society reacts to them and their views on these reactions. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and thematic analysis was used to capture the general and the subthemes. Results: The findings suggest that causal attributions for the illness, the impact of illness on various life domains, challenges of living with the illness and finally stigmatization are general categories that capture the perspectives of the participants. Conclusion: People diagnosed with schizophrenia experience the impacts and burdens of their illness in various domains of their lives and negative societal reactions heighten these burdens. It seems important to consider the challenges faced by people with schizophrenia in living with their illness and the impacts of negative societal behaviors and attitudes in offering psychosocial interventions programs for supporting this group. Furthermore, combating negative societal attitudes also seems to be necessary.


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Citation Formats
A. N. Karancı et al., “Living with schizophrenia: Perspectives of Turkish people with schizophrenia from two Patient Associations on how the illness affects their lives,” INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SOCIAL PSYCHIATRY, pp. 98–106, 2019, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: