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Meet JJ! (they/them)

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JJ is thirty-two years old and is a well-known music producer and lives in an inner city apartment that is decked out with turntables, speakers and an eclectic collection of records. JJ loves the vibrancy of the city, appreciates the diverse culture and enjoys soaking up the arts scene and going to gigs and the theatre.  

JJ started hearing voices and experiencing visions around the age of 13. JJ hears a number of voices – some caring and protective, others critical and mean. Every now and again, JJ also hears people humming which they believes reflects their musical creativity. When JJ is extremely distressed they see visions of zombies and people that have hurt them in the past. When this happens JJ finds that using a combination of taking medication, using grounding and sensory techniques such as stomping and holding an ice pack, or doing a hard gym session, help to bring back a sense of calm and safety.   

JJ’s passion and talent for music not only provides an outlet for creative expression, but also is the most effective way to manage their voices and visions. JJ wears headphones when out and about, particularly when in crowded spaces and on public transport as this is when the voices are typically more intrusive and loud. This helps JJ to feel more in control of the voices and provides them with an increased sense of choice to engage or not engage with the voices. 

JJ also has a passion for vintage cars and has recently bought a blue Volkswagen Beetle! JJ often takes their friend for a spin and has been enjoying going on road trips to the countryside to have a break from the city, breathe the fresh air and spend time in nature. JJ finds that in this space the voices and visions are reduced and they can use the time to relax and reflect. 

JJ has also been seeing a therapist to work on identifying triggers, early warning signs and develop a toolkit of helpful coping strategies. JJ has found this helpful to feel more in control of the voices and visions and maintain wellness.