Like a bad Acid Trip.
What is DP/DR like for you?
Posted 17 August 2018 - 12:30 AM
My DP is constant. I've been depersonalized for almost 9 months and I haven't "snapped out of it" even for one second over those months. Every minute of every day I am painfully aware of my detachment. I have a bunch of symptoms but I feel the need to note that I've also been diagnosed with CPTSD/PTSD (CPTSD from childhood and PTSD from a series of car accidents that caused my DP), so it's hard to say what is caused by the trauma or strictly due to the DP itself.
- Someone else said this, and I'm just quoting it here because I felt it was eloquently put: "One metaphor for one aspect is a transparent, or translucent, barrier between me and the world. I can see through it, and I can remember what life was like on the other side, but I can't penetrate it." - dalailama15
- I often feel like an outsider watching the rest of the world be engaged and present in their lives while I am constantly aware of the fact that I'm unable to embody that type of presence in mine.
- I struggle with time quite a lot. I'm never able to discern how much time has passed, sometimes it passes very quickly and other times it drags on. I also feel like things that happened two or three days ago happened weeks ago.
- Along with issues with time, my memory is pretty bad (not that it was great before DP). I struggle to remember what I did a few days ago as the days seem to blend in to one another (I attribute this to the fact that my mind-state never changes so no matter where I am or what I'm doing everything feels exactly the same).
- I have absolutely no emotions. I don't feel happiness, love, or excitement but I also don't experience anger or sadness or grief. I look at my family, boyfriend and friends and I no longer feel that emotional connection. I am able to cry, but I experience this intellectually. In the past, I would be sad or angry and as a result I would cry. Now, when I'm in therapy and I start crying, I only deduce that I must be sad because there are tears on my cheeks. I feel absolutely no connection to the tears and no relief after I'm done crying. I can feel anxiety/guilt/dread but I attribute this to my next symptom.
- Intrusive/Obsessive thoughts. I often get very fixated on an intrusive thought and can spend an entire day anxious because I'm circling around and around the thought. I believe this happens because I'm extremely detached from my emotions so I have a hard time knowing how I feel about things/people/events and therefore have a hard time trusting myself. This makes me question everything and never really reach a conclusion. My therapist believes these thoughts are a way for my mind to attempt to gain some semblance of control over a situation that is ultimately out of my hands and over my head. Rationalization doesn't work and the only thing I can really do to aid this is distract myself as best as I can.
- Racing heart-rate from time to time. Ever since the onset of my DP, I've noticed my heart rate is much higher than I believe it was beforehand. (Note that I never paid much attention to my heart-rate before DP as I could never feel it or see it thumping in my chest as I can now.)
- Lack of imagination. In the book, "The Body Keeps the Score" by Bessel van der Kolk, he discusses how trauma impacts a survivor's ability to imagine a different future for themselves outside of their currently reality (often in reference to their PTSD). I mention this book because my DP was due to trauma and van der Kolk provided a lot of insight into what I am dealing with/going through. I can no longer daydream. I have absolutely no imagination, and I used to be a very avid daydreamer- when I was driving, when I was spacing out in class, when I would go for walks, etc.
- A complete and total disinterest in life in general. Things don't mean anything to me anymore. The hobbies I used to have no longer bring me pleasure. I have a hard time setting goals or focusing on the future because I just don't care about anything. I have no access to feelings like ambition, determination or drive. When I accomplish tasks, I no longer have a sense of pride about them. I used to be a chronic over-achiever. I graduated college with honors all while working 2 jobs. I was constantly on top of to-do lists and a pretty productive person overall. Now, it's hard for me to see a point in doing anything. Everything feels like it requires so much effort and because I don't get any personal satisfaction from anything, I do much less.
- A complete inability to be fully present, ever. No matter what I'm doing, my mind is always going. I'm constantly trapped in my internal world, worrying about my detachment or anxiety or intrusive thoughts. I often feel like I'm only 50% "there" when I'm talking to someone or completing a task. The other half of me is stuck in this internal dialogue with myself, constantly checking to see if my emotions have come back or thinking of something else to worry about.
- At the beginning of my DP, I had a total loss of my sense of self. I questioned who I was and convinced myself I was a horrible person. I couldn't tell you what I liked or disliked because I no longer had access to the emotions that would guide me to those preferences. I felt like I lost touch with all of my core beliefs and questioned life itself. Which leads me to my next point.
- A completely new look on life and death. I used to be terrified of dying. Before the DP, if you asked me if I had the chance to be immortal if I'd take it, I might have genuinely considered it. I loved being alive. I loved living. I loved life itself. After the DP, I realized there might be something much worse than death... living the rest of my life feeling essentially like a hybrid between a zombie and a robot, emotionally speaking. Most days, I would be completely fine being told I only had x amount of days left to live. I've contemplated suicide many times- more from a curious standpoint than from a place of desperation. I no longer fear death. In fact, I can't imagine many things worse than DP and I can't imagine death as being anything other than a wonderful release from what feels like a living nightmare, a personal hell if you will. To quote something I saw on Twitter once, "I'm not saying I look forward to death, but when she does come for me, do not be surprised if you hear a sigh of relief."
- A loss of appetite, for the most part. This comes in waves but usually I have trouble eating anything until around dinnertime. I used to eat 3 meals a day and snack in between, but ever since the DP I've had appetite issues. At the onset of my DP, I dropped about 10 pounds in two weeks because I couldn't eat any solid food- my anxiety was so high I would get nauseous if I attempted to eat anything.
- Anxiety. I used to think I was an anxious person before the DP and I truly laugh at that thought now. I've spent weeks on end with my stomach in knots and my thoughts racing in circles. I often feel a sense of impending doom, as if something horrible is going to happen at any moment... even when I logically know everything is fine and I am safe. It's gotten to the point where I'm anxious about my anxiety, and I worry about when it will hit me or come back around.
- Sleep problems. In the beginning of my DP, I was having trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. I used to fall asleep relatively quickly, but since the DP it can take me almost an hour to fall asleep at times. I almost never feel genuinely tired. Even late at night I have to make the decision to lie down and attempt to fall asleep- my body doesn't give me cues like heavy eyes or yawning to let me know I'm tired. I can't nap during the day and the only time I'm able to doze is when I'm in the car, but only for about 10-15 minutes at most. I sleep better now than I did in the beginning, usually around 10 hours a night if I'm lucky, but I wake up anywhere from 4-8 times during the night and through the morning.
- Vivid dreams. I can always remember at least 2 of my dreams in the morning, although usually I remember many more. There have been nights where I've remembered 4 or 5 dreams that I had, and I can remember the dreams days, weeks or months later. I don't usually have nightmares, but I often have unpleasant dreams- about people or things I'd rather not be dreaming about. Like I mentioned, the dreams stay with me which can be anxiety inducing or unsettling at times.
I don't have trouble recognizing myself in the mirror, or looking down at my body parts and feeling as if they belong to someone else. While I feel like I'm in "autopilot mode", I don't feel as if someone else is controlling my speech or actions. I also don't suffer from derealization at all that I know of. Things look, more or less, the same to me as they always have. No 2D surroundings or distortions that I can tell.
Posted 28 August 2018 - 08:48 PM
>blanking out when ive been doing anything (blank out randomly while out of the house, studying, walking home, walking from the bus stop, to the bus stop, in the midst of conversation, with friends, watching or reading things[i have to re-watch or re-read it multiple times to actually understand what it is i'm reading, but i love reading so i deal with it], literally anything else) and going on autopilot(giving a reaction but not remembering hearing, seeing, or saying anything)
absolutely terrible memory (thinking ive done something(ie. assignments, something someone told me to do, something i wanted to do, showering, daily things)
heart palpitations (not sure if this is connected to it but i think it is)
not feeling anything at all, feeling very disconnected from my body(such as right now as i type it doesnt look like its my own hands)
not recognising myself(i force myself in an effort to look at myself in the mirror, and when i'm aware of how i dont recognise myself i freak out, but i mostly just feel the alienation from my body but i dont like looking at myself)
not recognising those around me(ive pushed a s/o away out of nowhere, ill physically uncomfortable when i remember i dont recognise anyone)
right before i (non intentional)disconnect emotionally ive noticed that i get blinded almost from blood pressure n hurt/anger and lash out somehow or way
i constantly lose my train of thought when speaking, to combat this ive gotten in the habit of writing down things i want to remember
i first self harmed in 9th grade but i stopped it since it didnt help my overwhelming emotion that would come all at once, since then the most i do is punching but i think it helps me especially since it reminds me my hands are attached to me becuase of the pain
i have a personality thats my "autopilot" but i'm not going to say i have two personalities, maybe just two modes
- Mere-Observer likes this
Posted 07 September 2018 - 10:45 PM
Can’t connect with others
People look very lifeless and ugly
Sense of disconnection from society
Posted 14 February 2019 - 07:43 PM
Hello I know it sounds weird but i saw your comment back in 2012 and i just wanted to talk to cause i am experiencing this feeling a lot .
My DP often makes me question reality..It often gives me the frightening sense that im not part of reality at all..That i am completely delusional and that the world around me and people around me are all made up by my mind...Even as i am typing this i am questioning is this website even real (my DP has kicked in a little) Kinda scarey to be honest!
Does this make sense to anyone else?
Ive had to learn to just ignore these thoughts and tell myself im part of the real world even if DP tries to tell me im not!
Posted 30 September 2019 - 02:30 PM
Posted 07 October 2019 - 07:43 PM
When I speak I feel like my voice is coming from somewhere far away. I just don't even feel like I am human. People seems far away. My face goes blank and I stare into space a lot. My mind is constantly busy and I zone out a lot. I get weird physical sensations on top of that. My eyes blur and go out of focus, my hearing is bad, I get tingling in my face and my body feels numb like I am standing outside of it. I am somewhere between being highly sensitive and feeling totally numb all the time. It can be hard to relate to other people because they seem so alive and vibrant where I feel dead inside and disengaged from the world.
I have had these symptoms in some form for almost 12 years now. They were miss diagnosed as PTSD and I am only recently beginning to learn about DP/DR.
Posted 29 April 2020 - 11:10 PM
Posted 30 April 2020 - 02:20 AM
I was diagnosed about 6 months ago now and began medication 5 monthd ago. I have had very small episodes before but around october had a breakdown which caused some severe dp/dr to start that i was in and out of emergency for. I could tell if i was awake or dreaming and nothing felt real. Since medication its gotten better but it still is there constantly
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