Hearing Voices Groups

Hearing Voices Groups are not rocket science. They are simply people with shared experiences coming together to support one another. They offer a safe haven where people who hear, see or sense things that other people don’t can feel accepted, valued and understood.

“I’d been living all these years in a strange isolated bubble, thinking I was unique, and then I realised there were all these other people just like me.” Ruth*

There are over 180 groups across the UK, including groups for young people, people in prison, women and people from BME communities. You can find Hearing Voices Groups across the world, in countries such as USA, Greece, Palestine, Japan, Australia and Denmark.

Core values

Purpose

Hearing Voices Groups are based firmly on an ethos of self help, mutual respect and empathy. They provide a safe space for people to share their experiences and support one another. They are peer support groups, involving social support and belonging, not therapy or treatment. However, groups do offer an opportunity for people to accept and live with their experiences in a way that helps them regain some power over their lives.

Respect

Hearing Voices Groups welcome the diversity of experiences and views of their members. Rather than seeing one belief system as more valid than another, all explanations for voice and visions are valued. There is no assumption of illness. Groups recognise that all members have expertise to contribute to the group, no one member is more important than another.

Flexibility

All Hearing Voices Groups are centred around the needs and aspirations of their members. Rather than being solely focused on voices and visions, group members are welcome to talk about any issue that is important to them.

Ownership

Hearing Voices Groups recognise the importance of being user-centred and are working towards being truly user-led. Each member has an important part to play in determining the direction of the group, keeping it healthy and upholding its ethos.

Confidentiality

All Hearing Voices Groups should be as confidential as possible, with members being fully aware of any limits to this. Wherever possible, what is discussed within the group should stay within the group.

Different types of groups

Whilst all groups in our network should hold to these basic values, our network includes a range of different types of groups. The differences include, but are not limited to:

Membership

The membership of most groups is purely made up of people with lived experience of voices, visions and other unusual sensory perceptions. Some groups have open sessions that welcome family members and/or supporters too. Some groups focus on a particular group (people from specific cultural groups, genders or ages, for example). Others are open to all.

Setting

Our network includes groups in a range of settings, including: independent community groups; voluntary sector organisations; mental health teams; inpatient units; secure mental health units; prisons.

Facilitation

Whilst some groups are 100% user-led, with all facilitators having personal experience of voice-hearing, others are facilitated by people a combination of personal and professional experience. In some settings, groups may be facilitated completely by people with professional, but not personal, experience. Whilst these groups are no less valuable than any other, we would always encourage them to find ways of more actively involving people with personal experience in their running and facilitation.

166 responses to “Hearing Voices Groups”

  1. Rachel Van Den Bergen

    Another thing that causes anxiety as well is the benefits system. On sickness benefit I
    got much more money than I did working but it means keeping a label as having an
    illness so it made me see my voices as a negative thing. Now because I am “better’ I am
    put on a humiliating work programme called Seetech where we are treated like children.
    People who have recovered or are recovering seem to get penalised. Also some of the voices are from past work places that caused me problems in the first place.

  2. heather

    I have been hearing voices in my head since I was a child. This is the first time I’m really talking about it and I’m not exactly sure y I hear them I know sometimes they are angry and sometimes they are happy. I almost always hear them I often have conversations with them. There are many of them and they all have different personalities. I guess I’m not really sure why i am leaving a comment but I think its just so I can tell someone.

    1. HVN

      Thanks for sharing, Heather. I hope you can find a way to opening up to others too. You’re not alone in this, and there’s support out there if you need it.

  3. Nobody To Everyone

    Strange how a good day can turn bad just by hearing the voice of someone specific – who was specifically vile to me – strangely its her voice but shrill like a cry or something. I’m lucky in that I survived numerous near death – pushing suicide – experiences courtesy of the voices, finished my final year of uni way back in 09 with my new “friends”, who made sure the exams were just that bit harder than they already were. Finally got – properly – employed & here I am. What to do when the voices found me when I had no-one & to this day I still have no-one. Am I recovered now? Why have I bothered to even write this here. I think its because of THAT voice. The other 3 – been there from the beginning – they’ll do anything to make sure what I hear people say who are around me, isn’t what – I hope – people around me are saying. So how is one to bring people into this empty life when any opportunity to do so is met with voices from me – voices from them. Did I mention everyone I knew no longer wants to know me. Do I hear anyone talking for real anymore or is it all made up in my head. I know the answer to these questions already, but to ask is only polite. Get help you say…looked for a group thing which sent me to another website, which then sent me back here…so I started writing. And before you know it, its finished.

    1. HVN

      Hi, that all sounds really confusing – and isolating. I’m sorry finding a group is proving confusing too. If you want to email us at nhvn@hotmail.co.uk we’ll try and find a group near you.

    2. Audrey Taylor

      First Person Plural is a dissociative forum you may like.
      Pottergate Clinic do initial free assessment for dissociative conditions.
      NHS funded clinic is called Clinic for Dissociative Studies. X

  4. Sharon

    Hi my names Sharon

    Im a nurse, i’ve been looking into these things for a while now. I have experienced hearing voices, seeing things, and sencing things on 3 different occasions. I’ve come to a conclusion recently that i think these things are part of our defence mecanisms. Its something within our brains, or soul ( whatever you prefer) that’s barried deep down that may get triggered during a stressful situation.

    I like this website, i do think there are many different ways of dealing with these experiences, but its very much individualized. The standard way may work for you but not for everyone.

    Based (i can only say for my experience, and i have read other ones) on what i think i know, i do believe there is a higher power at work, at least with some situations.

    I have been looking into some unusual things as well such as outer body experiences, paranormal things, phsycology, how the brain works, The bible, evolution, I read the book proof of heaven, God, ect….

    I think the voices, seeing things, sencing things, is not an illness it is part of being a Human being. Maybe we are evolving and we just don’t realize it. And society does’nt accept us.

  5. Tone

    My son is a voice hearer. Not long come out of hospital again. He also sees things and as always had the feeling of what he describes as insects crawling over his body . He hears bad voices telling him to harm himself and as tried several times to act on them. Had many diagnosis over the last 8 years from Bipolar to Schizophrenia. His voices never leave him but he is learning to cope with them with the help of his care team. He has 3 voices ,all female and has a name for each one. Doesn’t sleep for days some times and will leave tv and radio on throughout the night and uses ear phones most of the time to drown out the voices. He’s at the stage know where he will only talk to myself and his mother because he thinks that everyone else wants to harm him and he wont eat or drink off anyone but us because he thinks people are trying to poison him. Some times he says he smells things and it makes him vomit. Its all very real to him.

    1. HVN

      Hi Tone, that sounds really hard – for all of you. It sounds like your son is getting support – but i was wondering if you and your family are getting help too. Some areas have groups for carers/supporters that it can be helpful to link in with. Best of luck in supporting your son towards his recovery.

    2. Cynthia Hart

      I’m really interested in finding oout what’s happened since your post? How old was your son? Mine is 19 and also has the 3 female voices. I really need help understanding this.

  6. Nicole

    I have depression and pyschosis, I was diagnosed back in jan/12. After a pyschosis episode. It started off my neighbours of 9 years started to become noisy, banging doors, arguing to which you could slightly hear or so I could. I lived in a semi-detached house. I also occurred a few stressful triggers that year. My husband was having an operation on his back, work were unhelpful with allow leave off even though I suggested I would take my holidays. My little girl was due to start nursey in the September, to which I had only left her with grandparents for work and was unsure of safety and security in schools (stranger danger at I call it). Then we got news that my husbands company didn’t have any new construction site, in the north east, he would need to work down south from mon-fri And due to these facts then needed to change my working hours around school hours as I worked evenings as my daughter went to grandparents for an hour or two before my husband picked her up. But all needed to change to dayshifts which once again- work told me I had to compermise!! So they where leading upto when I started listen to my neighbour noting very noise and was aware they looked into our garden from the back room and they were often in their garden as they were there love. so if I put the washing in the garden in my jammies
    and only remembered afterwards, I would start thinking they seen me or when you could hear them they were saying things about like i’am a tramp for quickly nipping in the back garden, that I was’nt a good parent. I stopped sleeping, alway thinking my neighbours were listening to me and had listen devides. Then in dec 11, I didn’t sleep for four days, and day before christmas eve, spoke to my neighbours through the Walls, about my entire life, that i’am a good person, never been in trouble with law, or did drugs (until now!)or harm anyone. I was sure the male wanted to kill me and was going to, I explained how I may go to the police about him, or was it me did I need help. The next morning I let my husband have a lie in and was taking my daughter to softplay. When I left the house my neighbour came on the drive near me with a card and gift for my daughter (as before all this we were quite friendly) but she touched my shoulder asking if I was alright as I must of looked like death! When I got in the car, I was convince she had bugged me and they had done to the car. As they started talking too me. I arrived at softplay to be told you needed tickets as was Christmas eve, I felt arwful I couldn’t take my little girl in. And didn’t know weather to go home or to my mam and dads. As for the past few days my husband had told me to stop going on about the neighbour as you can always hear them argue lately and must of being going through bad patch ( in feb 12, they put there house up for sale). So I ended up at my parents and as soon as my mam opened the door she was asking if I was alright, and I broke down. She didn’t realise I was this bad until now. As I always have checked things with my husband and mam as have OCD too. She called Gary then the hospital and I got appointment that evening. But first things first I needed a bath in my eyes to debug me and my coat throw away. That evening I was given diespan to keep me calm. But I went and confronted my neighbours about everything afterwards. And they seemed okay and worried about me. All over the festive period, I was withdrawn, straight after christmas I seen a consultant and given perseridone. To which I had bad side effects blurred vision, shacking, feeling out of it and this brought on my depression, to which I have a lovely husband, daughter and family and a lot to live for but I did take an overdose to try end my life. so needed to come off that medication but in the process I became more despression and the pyschosis started again about my fears for family and past life. To which i got admitted to hospital and section under mental health acts 2 and 3. I tried to escape everynight whilst really bad and did understand why I was there. And only talked to myself and nurses. I just wanted my little family back, at first I wouldn’t allow my husband to see me as I thought I was there due to him. But it was all my know doing, loose wires in my head, voices etc. Eventually after 2 months and change in medication to 800mg of quatiaipine rushing around me keeping me sain again, I got relesed. I have been okay and normal since end June 12 phew and hope it continues. I see a nurse once a week and pyschologist fortnight and consultation as an when needed to reduce medication and discuss progress. Hope my honestly and events can help or relate to anyone who is in the situation I was, and know there is help for you and you can become better again if not a better verison of yourself. The early intervention team in the NHS have helped me a lot. I have now regained friendships and allow my little daughter carry out activities such as swimming and dancing, where before, I wanted to wrap her in bubble wrap to keep her safe from the world. Good luck!

    1. Wanting2be.old.self

      Thank you for sharing your experiences they are so similar to mine and reading this I feel like I’m not alone

    2. Jennifer

      I loved your story. That in which I also don’t feel alone.

  7. Anna

    I hear the voice, the rustling, the banging of objects of my father downstairs in the kitchen (as my room is on the second floor). Except when I hear this, it is usually when I go to bed, knowing that he is sleeping thus no one is down there. I feel frightened because I don’t know what to do and seeing your page and reading your articles helps. Thank-you. And these voices seem to be in my head, but I hear them as if they are coming form a distant space, as if I am staining to hear something far away.

  8. david w myles

    wow this is great all this time i was thinking i was alone but now i know iam not i just started going to this group meeting and it was the best thing i could have ever did wow it realy cool iam truley greatful for the group thanks so much iam from akron ohio

  9. Angela

    It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who thinks that hearing voices and having visions comes from a higher level and I believe from another dimension

    1. Chris

      Hi Angela I’m not sure if youl see this but if so would love to share thoughts, thanks.

  10. Rachel Van Den Bergen

    Does anyone else her voices in other part of their body. I hear music and voices in my bladder and at the top of my leg along with tactile sensation.

    1. HVN

      Hi Rachel. Everyone’s different, but I’ve met quite a few people who hear voices coming from their arms, stomach or another part of their body.

    2. Jo

      Hi Rachel,
      Many years ago experienced roaring similar to a lion from my stomach and have friend who’s experienced similar. Praying for sensible wisdoms including protections, directions, strengths, strengthenings and appropriate interceptions and corrections to stop such menacing, upsetting experiences. Personally felt I could not share this until had friend actually going through same or similar. Praying for beneficial support and not adverse mockeries, underminings. I have found not able to share and get sensible support hard going, although do understand, if never experienced such as this, how could anyone really emphasise! Praying to use these adverse experiences in beneficial, positive ways and for ongoing sensible consequences.

  11. Chloe

    I have a voice in my head and i don’t get professional help because the voice (Veronica) says that I will be taken away. I’m 14 years old and Veronica has told me to cut myself and attempt suicide and I’ve done both.
    Sites like this have showed me I’m not the only one and that I can get better.
    My friend ( Who has a Dad with Bi-Polar and a brother with major depression) thinks i either have Bi-Polar or Schitzophrenia.
    I don’t want anybody touching me and I can’t sleep and I’m so glad I can talk to peope. Thank you, you may just help me and sae my life because Veronica told me to commit suicide today because I’m such a freak and the only person with a voice but you have showed me I’m not so Thank you.
    Anc thank you everyone who has shared their stories you have been a big help. xxxxx

    From Chloe

    1. HVN

      Hi Chloe, It’s really good to hear that this site has helped you feel alone – and that it has helped you realise that Veronica isn’t always telling the truth. Most people think voice-hearing is really rare, but (as you’ve probably picked up from this site) it’s much more common than that – especially in young people. Hearing voices doesn’t mean you’re a freak or ‘mad’ – but if you’re hearing a voice that is saying really horrible things to you, and you’re self-harming and feeling suicidal, it’s really important that you find someone to talk to about this. Voices happen for all kinds of reasons, but talking to someone about it should help you work out what’s triggered these experiences and how you can find a way of dealing with them. Some people, especially when they’re struggling, see CAMHS (child and adolescent mental health services) or EIP (Early Intervention in Psychosis services) – but that doesn’t mean they are ‘mad’ – just that they need some extra support. Check out our Getting Help page for more ideas on where to turn. You might also want to speak to Voice Collective (http://www.voicecollective.co.uk) who specialise in supporting young people who hear voices.

  12. Keith Hansen

    I have heard voices for just a year or two. They have told me they are the devil and so on. It took hospital and pills and shock treatment for me to realize that they are aliens that have the ability to speak in our heads and tell us what to do and sometimes see. My voices keep telling me it’s going to get worse as time goes on. They have explained a number of things to me. They say they will never leave me alone and that they will be with me until my death.I could write a lot more about “them” the voices. I have 2 voices. They are saying I am in trouble writing this. So I will stop. It is good to know that you are all out there and that there is this website to go to for support. Thank you all. PHX USA

    1. HVN

      Hi Keith, that sounds really overwhelming. I hope that things weren’t too difficult after you posted on here. Sometimes people find that the voices they hear don’t like them trying to share their experiences or get support – so it’s sensible just to try it a little at a time. Just speak about as much as you feel comfortable with. I’m glad that it helps to know we’re out there and that you’re not alone in going through such scary experiences. Everyone’s voice-hearing is different, but I like to think that voices (whoever or whatever they are) don’t always have 100% of the knowledge or power that they claim – so I hope that the voices maybe don’t have the full truth when they’re telling you that things will get worse over time. Have you found that there are any places where the voices influence you less? Sometimes people are able to identify places or activities that give them a buffer from them.

  13. Chris

    I put a post up here which never actually got put onto the website for some reason, not sure why, but I suffer with voices in my head, destructive one and its ruined my life pretty much. I created a video which I would like people who suffer with voices to watch so you they can hear my story it can be found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QgjLTmgadsI

    Thanks Chris

    1. HVN

      Hi Chris, I’m sorry your last post didn’t get through (it wasn’t moderated or deleted by us, but may have been caught by our spam filter). Thanks for sharing your story with us.

      1. Chris

        I hope that my video will help others out there

  14. Rachel Van Den Bergen

    I often hear voices in my leg, and it is always my right leg with strange sensations and music. The voices coincide with when I menstruate. Does anyone else experience anything like this?

  15. justaguy

    I have discovered that if you can locate a deep cave or a deep mine, and if you can go deep inside there for 30 minutes or longer, the voices will leave you. Find a place that offers a cave tour, or a mine tour, where you can go deep inside for a length of time, the voice will leave.

    1. HVN

      Hi – it’s great that that works for you. Here are HVN we recognise that everyone’s different, though, so what works for one doesn’t work for everyone. I hope that some people find that this is useful to them too. Having extra tools in our toolbox to deal with experiences like these is so helpful. Thanks for sharing.

  16. Ronald

    my father who is a psychitrist says he secretly regrets what he does by treating people with mental illness.

  17. Melanie

    I heard voices in my ears wispering voices calling me names and bruning in my eyes as if fire was getting rubbed across my eyes over and over and bad pain on the back of my neck what does this mean and why please help…

    1. HVN

      Hi Melanie. That sounds really painful and frightening. We meet quite a few people who hear voices as well as have body sensations. But, unfortunately, making sense of why it happens is such an individual thing it’s hard to say for sure. A good starting point can be speaking to someone (see Getting Help & Support) or try a Hearing Voices Group for some ideas). You also might want to check out some videos and information about experiences like these to see if anything resonates for you. Most importantly, you don’t need to go through this alone. If you can, find someone who will listen to you and will help you make sense of what you’re experiencing.

  18. CeCe Cat

    It’s so wonderful to find a site that doesn’t classify this phenomena as a mental illness. I saw Angels when I was very young and they’ve been with me ever since, at least I hung on to that thought as I went through many childhood traumas and abuse. As an adult, a few years ago, I went through a severly depressed episode and actually had a dissociative episode and lost several hours of time. When I “resurfaced”, I was in my bed and the Angels were behind the head of my bed, talking to each other. I couldn’t understand what they were saying, but I knew it was about me and they were concerned. This terrified me and I thought I was insane. I called a counselor who’d been recommended to me the next morning.
    I am wondering if anyone else has had an experience like this, involving Angels? I’ve been falling into another depression the last few weeks and in the last few days, I’ve been hearing voices. Not my Angels, I don’t think. Again, I can’t understand what’s being said, I just hear whispers right behind my right ear. This is all very confusing and frightening to me. Do others who experience this usually understand what’s being said? Or is it common to hear the voices but not the words?
    Thank you for giving us a place to come to for help!

    1. HVN

      Hi CeCe Cat, It’s great to hear that finding our site has been so helpful – we’re open to lots of different kinds of voice-hearing experiences here (and whatever interpretation the person themselves finds useful). I hope that others can connect with your experience (either on here, or if you join a Hearing Voices Group to get some support whilst things are difficult for you).

      The experience of not quite being able to hear what the voices say is something we hear quite a lot – of whispers or muttering, or sometimes just struggling to hang on to what was said after the voices stop speaking. Do you have someone you can speak to about this – the counsellor or someone else you trust? See our page on Getting Help & Support for some ideas. I hope things get easier for you soon and begin to make sense.

  19. Brigid Hurley

    I’m a diagnosed paranoia schizophrenia. You could say from just the research I have done that I’m a voice hearer, yes, they are very real. I feel like I have voices personalities, there are many negative and positive voices. They have avatar faces and body with backgrounds and names, such as, snickers and coke, ha, it’s silly, but true. I’m definitely, interested in the Voice Hearing Network and be a part of it in any way I possibly can. I take care of three large dogs, I clean, do laundry, write, art, poetry, photography, and cook homemade cakes, cookies and meals.
    I studied psychology and journalism at a university, undergraduate work then went online correspondence, as a graduate student in Ecology and Ecotherapy for the Ph.D. I didn’t finish, I was battling some pretty dark stuff. The symptoms of paranoia schizophrenia were showing up along with anxiety and panic. Here I am today. I would like to help others.

  20. Brigida

    Voices are very real, they have names, like mine Coke, my delusion has a name Snickers. The voices are voices with personalities, good, bad, and ugly, there is no discrimination. I have paranoia schizophrenia, and I’m battling the darkness. I think HVN would be very helpful for me.

  21. Jeff

    I truly wish that I had discovered this website several years ago when I was in a scary place in my life. I started off with feeling a distinct sensation of being “tapped on the shoulder” and being surprised when I would turn expecting someone and no one being there. Then I started experiencing visual, auditory, and touch or sensing some one close to me. I found it to start of as if to be some game luring me deeper in to another reality. I remember feeling like I was being entertained or distracted from things and I at one time thought a person or more around me and one living with me were playing a sick control game with me. Things then started becoming dark and terrifying at times. It became voices judging, intimidating, harassing, and keeping me from enjoying anything or even sleeping. Then I felt like I was tested in very sadistic mind games that were very real and unreal at the same time. I then felt a sudden shift to a voice that was most often very helpful and consoling but would often become displeased when I did not follow their instructions. At the same time and as time passed I remember being in a very bad situation in reality and feeling that the voice was taking care of me as a loving parent or a supportive influence. I awoke on one occasion to a white silhouette caressing my back and speaking softly telling me a story of who they were and it appeared to be a female. She paused as if to observe how I was going to react to this upon awakening and then proceeded to caress my back and continue with her story. I also had awakened to the feelings of being in a horror story and hearing family members screaming my name and other phrases. I experienced what appeared to be rapture at one time with people climbing on buildings and houses outside of apartment and racing to the sky as I heard the voices telling me of how some were going and others staying and hearing familiar voices saying things that were scary, strange, and involved in the theme of everything ending and me be trapped in my little apartment without hope. I remember the voice continuing to change as if someone new took over and being coached and supported and cared for. I remember the voice telling me goodbye and leaving and feeling that I was loosing my parent or best friend and feeling so lonely and empty. I remember not really experiencing more for a short period and then occasional revisits to a point that I find myself now. I am often encouraged, coached, and corrected for things I could have done differently. I have had coaching on improving my communication skills. I feel like I am being having tricks played upon me at time for their entertainment and sometimes for mine. I feel like I have a friend on many occasions and then sometimes hearing “I am not who you really have ever thought I was and I do not want to continue these conversations, I have not been your best friend” I still become annoyed when I feel that the voice or voices are overly intrusive and make doing work or enjoyable things more difficult, but I still feel like a child being abandoned when I hear my friend starting a conversation that appears to be goodbye again. I often wonder who I am hearing. I thought it was the devil in the past and I felt it might have been God or an angel and then at other times a spirit of someone. I feel that there was a lot more help than the negative side of things and I have never known if it was multiple voices, if they swapped out at times back then, and then as if someone good won out and has stayed by me to protect me from the negative and dark gaining a hold again. All I know is now after all of these years, at one time I wanted them to go away and never come back and I have been not so nice in talking back to them, but I feel that I would be so empty and alone if they never talked to me or responded to me again. Upon landing on the site I read descriptions of voices and other occurrences and it was as if I had written parts of the information. Nice to find you.

    1. HVN

      Thank you for sharing, Jeff

  22. Cheryl

    I wonder if voices I hear are just a part of me-that might be going through a bad time, like a signal for me to know that something is wrong. I don’t always hear voices, I sometimes go through periods of years and even forget what voices are like. I have learned to change my attitude instead of letting the old cliche and how it can be when you hear voices(rough) to a positive attitude that voices can be Positive and try daily to tell that I love them, it has helped! And if at times it does get bad I remember I don’t want to respond a negative with a negative but keep my ” I’m good”. Learning this has helped , Good luck to all and love those voices!

  23. pauline

    is there a support group in north Yorkshire area I hear voices they are my dead parents they are very abusive

  24. Rachael

    I forgot how helpful it is to read about other people’s experiences with voice hearing. I’ve suffered from this for several years now after a traumatic experience. When they first began I was out on numerous medications and they still never stopped and I slipped further into an isolated depression, I removed myself from society because I thought I was crazy. Most of the voices sounded negative, almost mad at me for being depressed about my situation. I heard one voice that has repeated a few times when I’ve come into contact with a new person I want to start a friendship or relationship with. “Be careful!” She has said. The first time I was so angry for her to interfere with the person I was getting to know however that person actually in light was a very bad person and physically harmed me only after a few weeks. After I heard her one more time say the same thing when I was thinking of going over to a neighbors house. I listened this time and stayed away, and I have no regrets. So sometimes they are helpful. Most of the time I hear them when I start having odd thoughts that give me anxiety. I hate having the house completely quiet. I sleep with a pillow over my head to try and block them because they are pretty loud when I try to sleep. Most of the time I hear the same things like “what do you want from us” but I can’t really put my finger on what is being said. I wish it was more clear like the woman’s voice whowas warning me. Most of the time it’s so muffles I can’t make out the words. This is the first time I’ve been able to leave a comment on a forum like this and it feels like such a relief to write this down and get it out of my head. I’m 33 weeks pregnant and I don’t want to discuss this with anyone because of the stigmas related to it. I think I’m going to start journaling more about it and maybe find a way to start coping with this. It’s helpful but also annoying and I just wish they would be quiet sometimes, especially when I’m already having anxiety, bcecause then I just feel insane.

    1. Jennifer

      Hi Rachel. I hope you’re okay and bump. Sometimes the voices are from your mind.

  25. Rachel Van Den Bergen

    Some of the voices that I hear from past work places and from places where I have lived. They swear. They are spiteful voices. I am a writer and artist and this helps me to cope with the voices. I found that indoor gardening coped with the stress and anxiety around them. I also read books.

  26. Squinting

    It feels like we are all in some twisted lab experiment testing the limits of the human mind and body.

  27. Thompson

    I understand how you all feel,i went into hospital in 2015 to replace my knee and shine bone,and had a titanium plate put in my leg,i was in there for 12 days,i have never suffered from any mental health problems but after 3 days i started hearing voices,at first I thought it was a government programme with Emfs,as I am a security officer and am very suspicious but I then started hearing strange music it got louder and louder then I heard people talking,like they were on a surveillance Opperation,after that I started to see people dressed in black they looked like men and women,and i was being touched it left the hospital after 12 days 28 months later in worked out how to stop the harassment,the vitamin b complex and weetabix has stopped it in its tracks,i’v been taking these two every morning for 3weeks the vitaminB puts a mucous on the nuoral pathways of the brain i’my sure how the weetabix works,it just does.

  28. Movimento vozes

    Dear Sirs

    I would like to know if there is any kind of permission internationally , given to groups in foreigner countries, to disregard the rules of confidentiality in hearing voices groups.

    I’m looking forward to hearing from you
    Sincerely

    Milton

    1. HVN

      Hi Milton, I’m not sure I understand your question. All groups should respect the principle of confidentially, as far as we’re aware, however, most groups have limitations to this (e.g. when someone is in immediate danger) – but this should be made clear to all members so they can decide what they feel comfortable sharing or keeping private. For information relating to international groups, you might want to contact Intervoice (www.intervoiceonline.org) or the national network of the country involved. Each network is an autonomous organisation, so whilst we all tend to hold to similar values the way in which it is enacted varies.

  29. Marie Miss

    I am so relieved to know I’m not alone. I look forward to more reading and leaving comments I’ve had similar experiences. Thank you.

  30. Real

    I believe that the biblical term for the voices might be Legion. From what I understand is the spiritual representation of the army of fallen angels on Earth. Going back further from the bible, aliens or an alien spirit, similar to the a white mist that has a hold of humanity and sometimes presents itself as God, in the same way that the Satan is said to try to trick humanity into believing he was God/Jesus.

    I have been hearing voices since 2011, I have experienced a few different voices, before then I had seen what seemed to be an Angel, I had visions of aliens, I had a visit from the white mist and then seen both black and white smoke like entities. This all connected to what we are experiencing. Its real.

    They have enlightened me on my spiritual history which has been amazing, but at the same time they have been hostile and abusive. Some of it stems from experiences that I have had in my past from abusive people, which they mimic and use against me, sometimes that tell me that its a test.

    I’m about to take it further…

    they have spoken to me through other people, through people that they have driven mad. The ones that you see in the street, that people ignore and seem crazy. Like us, they are not crazy. They are under their influence. Only, they either cannot handle whats been chosen for them, or they are being tortured. Maybe that all a part of the dimensional experience. Heaven and hell are not in some other place, but are here in another realm on Earth. These realms are dimensional and timeless. Each experience of visitations or seeing spirits, which the medical world call delusions are actually indications of our spiritual journey, or what I see as a mathematical equation/calculation of who we are and what our purpose is on this planet.

    I hope I’ve helped in some way, although what I’ve written seems a bit “out there”, this seems to be my truth of my experience so far

  31. Allen Price

    Hello

    i am 46 years old and have a diagnosis of bipolar and in the last two week also Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder.

    I have veeb very ill lately and under my local home treatment and and I told one of th eteam that I hear a male voice which wants me to harm myself and dettach from people that care about me. I have heard the voice since I was 5 or 6 and have got through most of life self medication with alcoholo and drugs since the age of 10/11.

    I was then admitted to hospital for 5 weeks and the consultant psychiatrist told me the voice was me talking to myself, and I had to be quite rude as this is an external voice commnading me to do things and I have 30+ lived experience of it and they are now looking at long term psychological therapy.

    He doesnt like me talking about him and he makes me harm myself biting punching slapping cutting and if he is really annoyed he commands that i walk in front of cars.

    I am really scared and my family are really trying to understand but on top me being suicidal they are findings this all to comprehend. I suppose I am too as I never wanted tp share this as I felt guilty and ashamed, and he has such power and control over me I told the consultant psychiatrist my voice has way more power than she could ever have over.

    I am scared by posting this as he has been vocal today just simply repeating the word dead over and over but i think that because I hve been around positive people.

    I tried your forum but couldnt work out what i need to do and it keep saying O had to pay $20?

    Allen

    1. HVN

      Hi Allen, that sounds like so much for you – and your family – to make sense of and manage. It sounds good that your consultant is now recommending therapy – especially if you meet someone you feel like you can talk with. Those feelings of guilt and shame are common, in my experience (as is hearing a voice that feels so powerful and controlling). Having told the home treatment team about the voice you hear sounds like a really huge step … especially as the voice has been a secret for so many years. It’s natural if things feel even more upside down right now whilst the dust settles and you work out what support is out there to help you find your feet again. There is an article by Rufus May on changing the power balance with your voices that may be useful at some point (although as things feel so difficult I’d maybe suggest talking it through with a supportive person rather than doing it on your own). It’s also worth looking at some coping strategies for when things are overwhelming. This is a youth site, but I like the strategies they have anyway: http://www.voicecollective.co.uk/coping/overwhelmed/

      I’m not sure why the forum did that, but will have a look at it.

  32. Dright

    I “hear” voices but they aren’t audible and instead i know they are imagined. I have conversations with them and I have a bad one I always feel paranoid about every little thing I am doing and if I am doing it wrong according to these voices, or i have a constant feeling that something bad is going to happen, and I cant feel the same way about certain things I love anymore because these voices keep giving me these bad ideas and i keep thinking they are changing the way i view the things I like. It feels like they play a part in my daily life but I cant find anything online that says whats wrong with me or what mental condition its called so it makes me feel lonely and confused. I am not sure if because i cant literally hear the voices it makes me not have a mental condition. I cant talk about these voices to anyone in real life so i feel like i can only do it online. I am tired of thinking all the time.

    1. HVN

      Hi Dright. Hearing non-audible voice is something I’ve heard more about in recent years. Quite a few people have talked about them in training courses and other conversations – having a sense of a presence that doesn’t speak out loud, but that communicates. Some people talk about knowing what the voice says, without hearing it. Others talk about the voice being more thought-like (but still feeling very separate from their own thoughts). We’re unique, so it’s not surprising that there are lots of different experiences that come under the umbrella of ‘hearing voices’. Voices aren’t linked to one diagnosis – lots of people have these experiences, including those who don’t have a mental health diagnosis at all. It sounds like you’re really wanting to understand what you’re struggling with, though, so it might be really helpful for you to talk with someone about it to try and make sense of things (even though I know you’ve said you can’t talk to anyone right now). Check out our Getting Help & Support page – perhaps it’ll have some ideas that you think are realistic. Even if it’s calling a helpline as a first step.

  33. Kimberly

    I hear voices in my head even see things i came close to committing suicide i started hearing them in 2016 the voices led to anger later suicide my life has been nothing but hell never happy like i used to be never feel free rushed to the behavior health center 2 time my wheight started going up lost hair everything started going down hill i pray every night god would save me from this it’s not something easy to cope with

    1. HVN

      Hi Kimberly, thanks for sharing a bit of what you’re going through – it sounds like you’ve been through a lot in the last couple of years. I’m wondering whether anything else was going on in your life when the voices came – or whether it all happened out of the blue. Whatever triggered the voices, finding ways of coping isn’t easy … like you say. Yet somehow, despite how tough it is, you’re keeping going. There are different coping strategies and bits of information I can recommend (check out our Free Downloads and Videos pages for some ideas). However, sometimes the most useful thing is to have other people to talk with who get how hard it is – and are willing to stand beside you. For some people, a Hearing Voices Group can be that kind of place. For others, it’s a faith group, friend, family or someone else. I’ve seen people come back from very difficult places, so I know it’s possible – yet having people who accept you wherever you’re at can be really powerful.

  34. scott stewart

    My voices introduced something called Adam Secant many years ago, which was a computer (program) that swapped words. So when I was thinking out loud (talking) to my voices, I would say one thing, but I would be told they heard something different. For example, I might say “I really like you” but the person I was talking to (I was told) would hear “I really hate you”. After a couple of years, Adam Secant disappeared from conversation, but my voices continue to claim that they swap words, in order to manipulate other voices by making them hear the wrong thing. SO while I am trying to negotiate and be reasonable, the people I was ‘talking’ to are being tricked into thinking I was being nasty, insulting, and unreasonable.

    At one point in time, while my voices were organising for this swapping or substitution to occur, they were calling it ‘antonym substitution’, meaning that they were replacing key words in what I was communicating (to voices) with their opposite.

    In addition to this, right from the start, my voices use “code words” when they speak to each other if I can over hear them. Obviously, I cannot overhear them, so if they are pretending that I can, they employ “code words”. One of the first ones was instead of saying “nation” they said “planets”, so if someone was going to visit the US from Oz, they would say they were going to “another planet”. Another common one they used was swapping “love” for “hate”, so they would say “you love Pam don’t you scott?” and mean “you hate Pam don’t you scott?”. Another code word was “committing suicide” which meant I think having sex. Another code word is “dead”. My voices would say “Scott, Pam is dead” and I think they substituted “dead” for “happy”, so they were saying “Scott, Pam is happy”.

  35. Missy

    So I heard voices very badly almost two years ago after using drugs for a short period of time. I was on meds and then have not been on them for almost a year. Suddenly I started hearing a whisper of a boy again saying, grandpa the stakeout is over. Cancel the stakeout. I found my meds and have been taking them the last few days for auditory halleucinations. To me recovery would be this never happening again. I used to hear 10 or more voices years ago. They were mean, would tell me to do things, narrated my life and argued with each other. Now it’s just one voice saying grandpa the stakeout is over. Cancel the stakeout. Doesn’t mean anything to me. The whisper was getting annoying. It has always been external for me. But not at all as terrifying as it was two years ago when I had used drugs. I dont use drugs or even drink. Haven’t in almost 2 years. I dont identify as an addict and I feel like this is punishment. The whispers were annoying. I just want to know this will go away and it is not permanent. I want to know that I am healing. I need some hope. I know i have turned around 95 percent from what I experienced two years ago in my psychotic break. But I just need hope. What I was hearing doesn’t make sense and I just want it to go away and to not have to be on a medication. If you have some hope to share please do. I am ashamed that I dabbled with drugs and I can’t forgive myself til I am recovered. I just need hope.

    1. HVN

      Hi Missy, i’m sorry to hear that you’ve begun to hear a whisper again – even though, as you say, it’s so much less overwhelming than when you were struggling a couple of years ago. I could imagine that hearing voices again after a long period of silence is really disheartening. Is there anyone you can talk with about this – to try and understand what (if anything) has triggered this particular experience (which sounds different to other ones you’ve had).

      From what you say, I get the impression that you really carry a lot of guilt about using drugs and hold a really high bar for self-forgiveness (only forgiving yourself when you’re recovered). Seeing your current experiences as punishment sounds hard too. I wonder whether it’d be helpful talking about your feelings about that difficult time (for example to a counsellor). Some people describe how those intense experiences, like psychosis, can leave people feeling traumatised. Especially when they’re so frightening. But, often, we don’t talk about it once it’s over because we just want to forget it and move on. If now isn’t the right time for you to do this, that’s fine – but it’s maybe something to consider in the future.

      In terms of hope, all I can say is that people do find a way through experiences like this. Sometimes they stop hearing voices altogether, and other times they find the voices easier to deal with. Whatever happens – having other people to talk to about what’s going on, including people who are going through similar experiences themselves, could be really useful.

  36. Nicola

    Hi i’m nicola actually not my real name. I just read about the 19 person about their story. Whom can hear voices too. You see i can relate to them too. You see i remember a lot about my childhood but mostly differnt to what my siblings remember. Sometime i would ask my mom about persons the two of us visited whom lives near a beach but my mom says that it was just dream. And sometimes while i was growing up i notice my sister would show fear in her eyes and call our parents every time i ask who is hell girl they kept mentioning. Or. Everytime i hear sounds like flapping of wings knocking on the windows on evenings. You may think this creepy ordinary for people who hears voices i dont know. This is the firstime im telling this i always act normal or try my best. But inside im shattering to peices. Because how many times i try telling the people arround me it like its just ordinary its like nothing. I never told any body but the voices call me devil. I have memories where people keep shouting and calling me devil and blaming me for something that ive done wrong or memories where men harm me or those disgusting hatefull memories. Or where i cant control my self trying to tel a friend to run because i could hear a voice of devil its self. Nightmares that i keep telling my self not reall but a part of me knew its reall. But it seems my family doesnt know. So ijust kept my mouth shut because i knew they’ll just tell me its not reall that it just dream. I keep wishing that somebody could save and tell me the truth. But how can they. Because maymbe it’not real and its just in my head. I tried telling a mental doctor but i feel i cant trust her or any body. So dont tell much and decided i cant speak any of this with anybody.

    1. HVN

      Hi Nicola, thanks for sharing a bit of what you’re going through – even though I’m guessing that posting about it was very hard to do. What you describe sounds so confusing, disorientating and painful. It’s one thing to have those horrible nightmares and voices calling you horrible things … but adds even more confusion when you’re not sure what is, and isn’t real (and others remember things differently to you). I could imagine, in your shoes, having no firm tether to connect with. I could imagine feeling lost and very alone. Whilst I don’t know what is, and isn’t, real – it sounds like it would be really helpful for you to find someone who won’t minimise or dismiss what you’re saying and will be willing to hear you. That might be someone from a Hearing Voices Group, but it could also be a counsellor or someone else. Not trusting people sounds wise, given that everything is so confusing right now. But I hope you can trust someone enough to open up a little to them. Whatever the truth of the situation, your reality matters – and how you feel matters.

  37. Victoria

    I moved into a very stressful living situation while coping with an already stressful situation at work, and within a month I first took medical leave for one week due to unspecified problems. I told my boss I thought I was having seizures. I was sensitive to noise and movement and light and it felt like I was blanking out every now and then. During the one week of leave I started hearing conversations in my head. This had happened before about three years earlier. I could hear past and current doctors talking to me, and could hear coworkers starting to talk to me like we were in on microchip network. I believed all of it, and I started impulsively driving around the state and staying in hotels. A man who I didn’t know in my group therapy had made an allusion to my past school and I thought hinted that the government was trying to hire me. This is exactly what happened three years ago. I even went out and bought a whole new wardrobe last time it happened. During that time I could beeps in my head, some were positive such as “that’s a good shirt” and some were sympathetic, like a tone in the side of my head that was like a cooing sound if I had a sad thought. That last tone stayed in my head for months, I would hear it while driving and thinking.
    During this recent episode I became convinced that I had a microchip implanted inside and that the same had happened to numerous people I knew, and that is how we were communicating. It took several weeks for me to conclude that this could have happened when I had Lasik surgery in 2004, since retinal implants do exist. I became very paranoid, walked into a convenience store and thought everyone was starting at me threateningly and called to have a policeman escort me to a parking lot across the street. I then felt that people were pulling up in their cars surrounding me, and at one point I thought I saw a remote control gun in the car next to me. The voice in my head commanded me on how to quickly drive away without it going off. The voice also told me to go back over to the convenience store, walk in, take a photo of a man behind the drink coolers and then one of the cashier. The cashier later approached me as I sat in my car and asked why I had taken a photo. He was a very large, threatening looking redneck sort of man. I finally got on 95 and believed that someone had planted a snake in my car. I thought there was a camera in the car and I felt something brush against my leg, and the voice told me to get out. I stopped by the side of the road, dashed out of the car, started walking down the highway, came back, and opened the car door and I thought I really did see a small black snake tumble out. Odd thing, a cop finally arrived and said when he walked over he saw two small grass snakes by the side of the road. We searched the car and concluded that it had gotten out. I got back in the car but got freaked out again about a snake and left the car by the road at a rest stop on 95. I went into the rest stop and sat there about three hours, paranoid that people were coming in to look at me. I was absolutely certain that the man from the convenience store followed up up there; I saw him walk into the rest stop. During all this time, the government was trying to train me how to communicate with the microchip. If I sounded immature they would reprimand me, I had to keep it very businesslike. Finally I took a sip of water from a fountain and could taste the same poison I had ingested two weeks early from a local Bojangles. I spit the water out and washed my mouth out in the bathroom and instantly had physiological effects, to the point where I finally called 911. I felt a pain in my stomach as well. I was very frightened, terrified, I thought the voices were also testing out my resolve by telling me things like my father was in the hospital and my mother was sitting alone in a corridor staring at the wall because of this. When I went into the ER I actually told them that I thought my father had died. Someone kept telling me a time of death in my head. Needless to say, they admitted me for anxiety and confusion. I stayed twelve days and still felt all the voices and commands in my head. In the hospital I thought they were trying to poison me, and that people from my past had convened to harm me. I’m trying to shorten this up a bit…but long story short now I am on Latuda and I don’t hear a thing.
    If anyone knows anything about retinal implants please let me know. The doctor was an MIT grad, so I still think it’s possible. My other psychiatrist has repeated things that I have said in the privacy of my parents’ house, and it seems like sometimes he has seen places I have been to, without me telling him.

    1. HVN

      Hi – wow, that sounds like such an overwhelming and frightening experience. Trying to untangle it and work out what parts were ‘real’ (shared reality) and which parts where part of your personal reality (not shared by others) sounds hard … especially when it sounds like the voices stopped when you began the medication. Whilst it sounds a lot easier to not be hearing those voices, I can also imagine that it’s left you with lots of questions. It’s a bit like having lived through something massive and then working out how to go forwards. I don’t know anything about implants, but it does sound like you feel really vulnerable and open at the moment. If you can, you might want to check whether there’s a hearing voices group near you (even though you don’t hear voices anymore – you’d still be welcome). This is a lot to sort through, and having people to talk it through with can help. It sounds like you’re from the US (you mentioned 911). Have you looked at Hearing Voices USA? They have a list of groups (and run some online groups too for those who can’t meet up in person).

  38. Tristian Monroe

    My name is tristian. I’ve been hearing voices since I was a kid. I’m 21 now and they are still with me. I can bring myself to explain what they say or sound like. But they freak me out and I stare off into nothing until they stop. I’ve been to mental hospitals before but never wanted to tell the doctors about them because I was scared. I don’t talk to anyone about them because I’m afaird that people with look at me different none of my family or closest friends know or my girlfriend. My girlfriends pregnant and I’m worried that or son or daughter might end up with this condition as well. I guess I’m asking for advice please help…

    1. HVN

      Hi Tristain, thanks for sharing. The stigma surrounding voice-hearing can be huge. I’m sorry to hear that the fear of people looking at you differently stops you telling those closest to you (or even the doctors when you’re in hospital). Have you met anyone else who hears voices? If you can, you could try going to a Hearing Voices Group (one that is confidential so you wouldn’t risk other people knowing). If not, then it might help to read about others who hear voices and what they’re like. Our personal experiences section has some stories, as does the book Living with Voices: 50 Stories of Recovery. Some people say that connecting with other people who hear voices can help them feel less bad about their own experiences. In terms of whether your son or daughter may grow up to hear voices – it’s hard to say. Whilst some people talk about genetics as one of the many reasons people begin to hear voices – the truth is far less clear-cut. This article from Richard Bentall (a psychologist) talks more about genetics. Reading this might help reassure you a litte: http://theconversation.com/there-are-no-schizophrenia-genes-heres-why-57294. Whatever happens, hearing voices doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Many people who hear voices are not distressed by their experience, some even find it a positive part of their life. Whether your child hears voices or not, it’s possible that your own experience of having something you feel unable to share with others will help you support them through their own struggles.

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