3 thoughts on “What Bipolar Auditory And Visual Hallucinations Feel Like

  1. No experience here. My dad suffers depression and delusions. Believing he knows famous people, apparently when I was a kid he carried an axe in the back of his ute as he thought people were after him. I’m not sure what delusions he has nowadays as we don’t see him much and when we do he knows to keep them to himself. Would love to hear from people who experience those and from family of someone that has experienced them.


  2. I’ve had plenty of audio or visual hallucinations in my time…most of them unwelcome. I have anxiety, depression and ADHD.

    An example of an audio hallucination that I’ve had would be of a fire alarm sounding. Fire alarms cause me a great amount of anxiety, and the majority of the time that I hear the non existent fire alarm is when I’m falling asleep at night while my family is sleeping; when I’m the most worried about a fire breaking out. It starts off as distant, and I try to put it out of my mind because I know that it’s not real, but the more I try, the more it sounds and the louder and clearer it becomes. Over and over in my panicked mind until I can somehow magically think it away. The entire time, I know it’s not actually happening. If it were to happen, I would be able to recognize the difference between the real and the phantom one in my brain.

    A ringing telephone was also a very common one because I used to get very stressed out about talking on the phone. I don’t as much anymore.

    As far as visual goes, there’s been plenty of things out of the corner of my eye. Many times when I’m outside for a while, I think I see a bird flying in the sky, but when I look towards it, the sky is clear.

    My first night in the psych ward when I was 15, completely sober and extremely stressed out, there was some sort of a border along the top of the wall. I watched in the dark as whatever was on the border morphed into dinosaur shapes and moved back and forth along the border.

    There’s been plenty of times shapes have taken form in front of me from shadows as I’m a passenger in someone else’s car at night. Or the bark on the tree morphs into the shape of something, or someone’s face. Blankets in the dark suddenly have eyes, a nose, and a mouth…that kind of thing.

    The only time I welcome hallucinations is when I tap into my brain and use it to my advantage for art. I can sometimes put up an invisible wall that only I can see in front of me, I can see the way I need to draw my lines, I can visualize the way I need to move my hands…I can see the progress in the work of art that I’m trying to create in my head. I can see what I need to do without really seeing it.


    1. “Shapes have taken forms in front of me…”

      This is an important phenomenon I forgot to mention. Thanks for pointing it out – and, as with the others you and I both described, I’ve had several others tell me they’ve experienced the same in the same ways.

      For me these shapes tended to appear out of existing visual contrasts like patterns, shadows, and movement. For example, one of my most common hallucinations was to see the shadows of moving fan blades turn into something like foliage or leafy growth. I’ve also seen a number of patterns on things like wallpaper etc. sort of morph slowly like a kaleidoscope.

      I also like how you pointed out that sometimes these hallucinations can facilitate creativity. Visualizing in art is important and, with a final nod to your skill in knowing yourself, it’s awesome that you’re able to harness this skill to stay a step ahead of the work.

      Thanks for commenting – I can tell you’ve really experienced what I and others have. Please consider joining a discussion or adding a new topic in the forum or possibly writing a guest article for us about more of your experiences.



      Liked by 1 person

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