Schizophrenia is still very much a misunderstood mental illness. Many people still believe that schizophrenia is just another way of saying multiple personalities. Others can only recall the extreme cases of violence when they think of people with schizophrenia. When it comes to the cause, some believe that it is caused by trauma, that it is rare, that you can catch it like a cold, or that it’s caused by poor parenting. The list of myths and misrepresentations is long.

Starting on World Schizophrenia and Psychosis Day (Sunday, May 24, 2020) we’re holding a contest and asking YOU to help us bust these myths and stereotypes. 

Get creative, make it fun, and help us shine the light on schizophrenia and psychosis. Help us create a wave of change challenging some of the more common falsehoods about schizophrenia.

Every photo or video shared to help us bust a schizophrenia and/or psychosis myth or misunderstanding will be entered into a draw to win one (1) of two (2) Amazon gift cards valued at $150. Photos and videos must be shared or sent in before 11:59 PM on Tuesday, June 30, July 7, 2020.

A huge thank you to the Otsuka-Lundbeck Alliance for their support and sponsorship for this contest.

Some Common Schizophrenia Myths

The following is a list of some common myths and misunderstandings about schizophrenia and psychosis.

You can choose one of the following myths to bust, or provide your own.

  • A person doesn’t need to take medication for schizophrenia
  • All people with schizophrenia are dangerous
  • All people with schizophrenia hear voices
  • Antipsychotic medications are worse than the illness itself
  • Bad parenting causes schizophrenia
  • Every person with schizophrenia belongs in a mental hospital
  • Everyone with schizophrenia is paranoid
  • If a person is intelligent, they will understand they are ill and shouldn’t be bothered by hallucinations or delusions
  • If your parent has schizophrenia, you will get it too
  • Individuals with schizophrenia all have the same symptoms
  • It’s okay to call someone with schizophrenia “crazy,” “loony,” or “psycho”
  • Medications make people living with schizophrenia zombies
  • Once the hallucinations or delusions are controlled by medications, the person is completely fine and their life can return to normal
  • People get schizophrenia because of childhood trauma
  • People get schizophrenia because they grew up poor
  • People with an illness like schizophrenia don’t need social support or friends
  • People with mental illness are all talented artists or highly creative people, because of their mental illness
  • People with mental illness would rather be homeless than do what it takes to maintain a place to live
  • People with schizophrenia are always unpredictable and out of control
  • People with schizophrenia are crazy or psychotic
  • People with schizophrenia are lazy
  • People with schizophrenia are not smart
  • People with schizophrenia are strange and weird
  • People with schizophrenia can never hold down a job
  • People with schizophrenia can’t be good parents, employees, or neighbours
  • People with schizophrenia can’t get better
  • People with schizophrenia can’t learn new things
  • People with schizophrenia can’t make meaningful contributions to the world
  • People with schizophrenia can’t take care of themselves
  • Physicians don’t let patients have a say about which medications to take
  • Schizophrenia can’t be treated
  • Schizophrenia causes sudden mood swings
  • Schizophrenia develops suddenly
  • Schizophrenia is a character flaw
  • Schizophrenia is a multiple personality disorder
  • Schizophrenia is contagious (i.e. you can catch it by being in the same room, sharing a cup, or shaking hands)
  • Schizophrenia is downward-spiraling; people who have it will get sicker and sicker until they die
  • Schizophrenia is just a bad case of the nerves or a nervous breakdown; the person just needs some rest
  • Schizophrenia is uncommon (i.e. it can’t happen to me or someone I know)
  • The media (TV, newspaper, radio, internet, commercials) are the best sources of information about mental illness
  • There’s no point in getting help until the illness is really bad, full-blown, or someone gets hurt

Busting Schizophrenia Myths

“Hi, I’m Paul. People keep saying that schizophrenia is like having multiple personalities, but it’s not. Schizophrenia is completely different than multiple personality disorder. I have schizophrenia, sometimes I hear voices, or think something that isn’t true, like maybe I’m here to save the world or that someone is out to get me. It’s my brain telling me something isn’t always true. When I’m having a psychotic episode, it’s better to empathize with how I’m feeling rather than tell me something isn’t true. #BustAMythBC #SchizophreniaFacts #SmashStigma @BCSchizophrenia”

How to Submit An Entry

Step 1:             Choose a Myth

Choose one of the following myths to bust, or supply your own (see list below)


Step 2:             Bust The Myth

Use one of the two following submission methods to explain why the statement is a myth, what the fact/truth is, and how knowing the facts has helped you change your thinking and understanding about schizophrenia or psychosis.

Be creative! Sing a song, write a poem, share a story, paint a picture. Wear the colour purple if you would like, purple is the colour for schizophrenia awareness.

Photo Submission:

  1. Take a photo of you holding up a piece of paper with “#SchizophreniaFacts” OR “#BustAMythBC”
  2. In the accompanying text explain:
    • the myth you are busting
    • what are the facts or truth behind the myth
    • how knowing the facts has helped you change your mind and understanding about schizophrenia or psychosis

Video Submission:

  1. Record a short video with you holding up a piece of paper with ‘#SchizophreniaFacts” OR “#BustAMythBC”
  2. In the video, state the myth you are busting, explain the facts or truth behind the myth, and tell us how knowing the facts has helped you change your mind and understanding about schizophrenia or psychosis.

Submissions will be used by BC Schizophrenia Society to help increase awareness about schizophrenia. They will be shared by BC Schizophrenia Society through their social media channels, online, or via print. All submissions will be used to raise awareness of schizophrenia, BCSS, and the programs and services it runs.

Step 3:   Post Your Submission

Post the image or video on your own social media and tag BC Schizophrenia Society

  • Facebook @BCSchizophreniaSociety
  • Instagram: @BCSchizophrenia
  • Twitter: @BCSchizophrenia

Use the following hashtags

  • #schizophreniafacts
  • #BustAMythBC
  • #SmashStigma

You can also email info@bcss.org with your submission if you’d like to remain anonymous or don’t have a social media account.


Example Submissions

Example of a Video Submission:

Then share the video on your Instagram story, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc, with the following hashtags: “#BustAMythBC #SchizophreniaFacts #SmashStigma” and don’t forget to tag @BCSchizophrenia


Example a Photo Submission:

Then share the photo on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter explaining the myth you are busting and the facts in writing. It doesn’t have to be long.

“My name is Jean and I work for the BC Schizophrenia Society. The myth I’m choosing to bust is that: “Schizophrenia is rare.” It’s not! It is very common, approximately 1 in 100 people have schizophrenia. That’s twice more common than Alzheimer’s, five times more common than MS, and 60x more common than MS. And every time I’ve told someone that I work for the BC Schizophrenia Society, someone tells me about a friend or loved one who has schizophrenia, and then they want to know more. #BustAMyth BC  #SchizophreniaFacts #SmashStigma @BCSchizophrenia”


Official Rules & Regulations

Contest (“Contest”) sponsored by the Otsuka-Lundbeck Alliance (“Sponsor”) and administered by BC Schizophrenia Society (“Administrator”). Contest begins on Sunday, May 24, 2020 at 12:00 AM PDT and ends on Tuesday, June 30, 2020 at 11:59 PM PDT.

No purchase necessary to enter or win.

Only a submission to #BustAMythBC (tagging BC Schizophrenia Society and using the #BustAMythBC) via your social media account


an email submission to info@bcss.org is required. By participating, entrants agree to be bound by these Official Rules and the decisions of the Administrator. Void where prohibited by law.

The contest is open to legal residents of Canada who have reached the age of majority in their respective province or territory of residence at the time of entry. Employees or contractors of the Sponsor or Administrator and immediate family members of, and any persons domiciled with any such employees or contractors, are not eligible to enter.

Winners will be chosen at random. The odds of winning will depend on the number of entries received. The winner will be sent an email and will have forty-eight hours to respond. If no response is received within forty-eight hours, another winner will be chosen. The winning entry will be verified and a list of winners will be announced via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are in no way associated with this contest. If applicable, social media posts (such as but not limited to Facebook posts, tweets, and Instagram posts) must be PUBLIC to be eligible. If you sign up for newsletters as entries, you must confirm your subscription for those entries to count. A reply to the winning email is required within 48 hours before a new winner is chosen.

Residents of Canada will be required to enter a skill-testing question to claim their prize.

Administrators and Sponsors reserve the right to publish the winner’s first name and last initial.

There will be two random draws conducted for one (1) of two (2) Amazon Gift Card valued at $150.

Images included in the giveaway post may not depict the exact prize and are for illustrative purposes only.

Please contact BC Schizophrenia Society at info@bcss.org for any questions.


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