Schizoaffective Medication Doesn't Hinder My Creativity

August 8, 2019 Elizabeth Caudy

A lot of people say that taking schizoaffective medication hinders their creativity. For me, this hasn’t been the case. Taking psychiatric medication keeps me stable and helps me stay productive—and ensures that the art I make is good.

Why Schizoaffective Medication Doesn't Hurt My Creativity

Schizoaffective Mania Doesn’t Help Me Be Creative

Many people with schizoaffective disorder claim that they are most creative when they are manic. Again, this isn’t true for me. I may make a lot of art when I am manic, but it isn’t good art. "Good art" being art that reaches other people and isn’t just inside my head.

In the summer of 2006, I took a lot of bad pictures during a family vacation to Door County. I was very manic. In my schizoaffective mania, I thought the pictures were genius. Now, it is true that you have to take a lot of bad pictures to get one good one. I guess the point is not that I took bad pictures, but that, in my mania, I thought they were all good.

I think a lot of people fall into this trap during schizoaffective mania. Since they are feeling elated and grandiose, they think everything they make is great, when, actually, that might not be the case.

Medication for Schizoaffective Disorder Helps Me Be Creative

This is where medication comes in. Medication takes away the schizoaffective mania and the schizoaffective depression. It’s really hard to make art when you’re so depressed you can’t get out of bed.

As I said before, schizoaffective medication makes me creative because it stabilizes me. It helps with my mood and it also keeps me out of psychosis. During my first and only psychotic episode in 1998, it was impossible for me to do any creative work. I’m sure you can imagine (if you haven’t experienced it yourself) that it’s hard to do much of anything when you’re completely paranoid—when you think people are following you and you are hearing voices. The reason it’s hard to do much of anything is that you’re so scared you’re in survival mode. I would rather be on medication any day than feel that way.

Taking medication for schizoaffective disorder helps my quality of life and, in turn, helps me create my art. The medication makes me think rationally so that I can correctly discern whether the art I make is good or not. It helps me stay disciplined so that I have the right mindset and the patience to do the hard work of making art. Most importantly, it helps me be my best self, which helps me make my best art.

How does schizoaffective medication affect your creativity?

APA Reference
Caudy, E. (2019, August 8). Schizoaffective Medication Doesn't Hinder My Creativity, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 22 from

Author: Elizabeth Caudy

Elizabeth Caudy was born in 1979 to a writer and a photographer. She has been writing since she was five years old. She has a BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and an MFA in photography from Columbia College Chicago. She lives outside Chicago with her husband, Tom. Find Elizabeth on Google+ and on her personal blog.

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