A questionnaire comprising 30 open-ended questions was sent to 450 people with chronic hallucinations of hearing voices who had responded to a request on television. Of the 254 replies, 186 could be used for analysis. It was doubtful whether 13 of these respondents were experiencing true hallucinations. Of the remaining 173 subjects, 115 reported an inability to cope with the voices. Ninety-seven respondents were in psychiatric care, and copers were significantly less often in psychiatric care (24%) than non-copers (49%). Four coping strategies were apparent: distraction, ignoring the voices, selective listening to them, and setting limits on their influence.