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Member Since 04 Feb 2020
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#629702 It's been awhile

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 07 April 2021 - 07:19 AM

Hi Findmywayhome,


I remember your posts:) You are hyper-analytical and introspective, as most people around here, and for most part, as far as I can remember, your observations were correct.


There is perhaps one thing that you may have not yet taken into account - I know it took me a while unitl I understood that - and that is the dynamics of illness/recovery, as there can be a pattern in the way you are processing things.


I am at a good place rn, but it has been a fierce struggle, since the end of 2016. I would go to therapy, get better, live my life for a while (a year and a half), and get worse again. Then the same thing again: 6 months therapy, get better, live my life (approximately a year and a half, haha), and get worse. And now, I am at the end of the thirds 6-month therapy, it helped a lot. However, the difference now, that I know what I am dealing with, is that I can expect to deal with some of it again. I think that my mind has a way of activelly "attacking"  the issues that need to be dealt with in therapy, and it can go on for approximately six months, but then it needs time to integrate all that, recuperate, and then it comes back with: hey, guess what, lol? here's the new topic/problem to deal with, lol!


But that is ok. I appreciate all that I have done for myself in the meantime, and I respect my struggle. I recognize how difficult it was, and I do not compare myself to some unattainable standard. I am setting the standard for myself.


Sure, this may not be the case with you, but perhaps it is worth considering how our inner capacities for recovery work, and if there are some intervals that you can recognize as stages in your recovery.


Good luck, and take care,


#629654 What I Am Thankful For.

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 02 April 2021 - 05:30 AM

I am thankful for/to myself, for being the only person I could rely on for as long as I lived, for keeping me safe, and sheltering my body and my mind when I was in great peril of losing it all. And I am thankful to myself - again - for being able to finally distinguish between learned behaviour and authentic feelings, to see things for what they really are and to act ccordingly, to cut ties with people who called themselves family and friends, but did not act as such. I am a really big fan of me, and if it wasn't for covid19, I would unironically throw a really big party to show my appreciation for myself.

#629344 Masturbation/Weed

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 12 March 2021 - 02:13 PM

Thomas, I respect your Christian beliefs.

Having said that, I would like to point out that it is not wise to give advice to people regarding their sexual behaviour based on religion, in particular since here are gathered people from all over the world, who may not share your beliefs.


In addition to that, condemning a particular conduct can only make someone feel worse about themselves.


Also, please note that DP and dissociation in some cases stem from a prolonged childhood sexual abuse, and in those cases, a severely negative image about one's self and one's body is already interiorized as a false core belief. Instilling a belief in someone that a perfectly normal thing such as masturbation is a sin could potentially be harmful.

#629314 statistic. (trigger)

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 11 March 2021 - 01:44 PM

@whataraindyday, you post also prompted me to think about how we see mental health issues among us here. I know that schizophrenia is often a very stigmatized mental illness, and it is probably not fun for someone with schizophrenia to read about our fears that we may have it...Also, why would someone with depersonalization and derealization disorder think that it’s worse than DPDR, if they never experienced it? I would say that depersonalization and derealization disorder is already a difficult and serious condition in itself, and I wish more people would understand how disruptive it is to a person's life...


My point is: whatever it is that you are dealing with, find out first what you are dealing with exactly, because only then you can plan your recovery. Don't let fears consume you. Let go of statistics.


Take care!smile.png


#629216 Not feeling body - Need Advice

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 06 March 2021 - 04:24 AM

Dear priyarahul,


I am sorry to hear that you didn't get the love that you deserved as a child. It is difficult to face it, even as an adult, and to grieve what we never had. But it can be worked through therapy, and there is a way to let go of that pain.


Now, I would like to emphasize that Dissociation absolutely does not mean that you have Dissociative identity disorder, and anyway you need to speak to a therapist in order to be diagnozed, otherwise it is just guessing. Dissociation is a broad term for a diagnostic group of disorders that are most often due to chronic traumatization in childhood. But it is important to say that dissociation does not have to be a disorder, as it is an ability and a mechanism that we all have. It becomes the disorder once an individual starts relying on this coping mechanism a lot, to the point of not being able to function well in their life.


The group of dissociative disorders comprises separately defined disorders such as Depersonalization and Derealization Disorder, Dissociative Amnesia, Dissociative Fugue, and also those disorders that show some sort of identity confusion or identity alteration, such as OSDD and DID. All of these are considered disorders as long as they influence or impair the person's life considerably. They all can be treated and recovery is possible. So, on this spectrum, you may experience detachment from different things (such as being detached from your memories, or your emotions, or sensations in your body, etc.).


There is a Dissociative Experiences Scale (DES), a simple test that is not intended for diagnozing yourself (to get a dx for dissociation it takes some time, and someone who is very knowledgeable about trauma and dissociative disorders), but it is used for screening whether a client in therapy has dissociation in the broadest sense. Even if you score high on this test, it does not mean that the dissociation you are experiencing is a disorder. You may be currently experiencing PTSD, or be very stressed without any other diagnosis, so dissociation (not as a condition or a diagnosis, but as a coping mechanism) may be high.


So, my advice would be to seek help. Find a therapist who knows about those things.

Take care,


#629190 Does the letter of this man resonates with you in any way?

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 05 March 2021 - 04:23 AM

Not really, except for one thing, perhaps it is worth sharing.


When depersonalization is due to dissociation from trauma, which is my case, an individual is prone to believing that there are all-good and all-bad parts to themselves. It is a result of dissociating, detaching from certain bad experiences, but most of all from overwhelming emotions that a person at a young age has no capacity to process.


It can result in seeing everyone else as strictly good or bad, and therefore judging people harshly, out of a desperate attempt to live up to a set model of perfection, which usually just has to do with a thought (that basically belongs to a small child, and not an adult): "If I behave this way, they will see me as good, and they (parents, parental figure) will love me."

#629132 At war with my brain since 2012

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 03 March 2021 - 04:09 AM

Hey Thomas,


I think that, if you sensed that there was trauma behind your condition, you should explore the options for trauma therapy of DPDR/dissociation.

I can identify with a lot of what you said, except drugs, I didn't use them. But drugs have been known to act as a trigger for mental health problems, which does not mean necessarily that they caused it. Especially with trauma and dissociation, we repress a lot, from memories to emotions, and drugs can certainly bring forward some issues that were hidden.


I would say that you figured a lot of things out on your own. I know it is difficult to be open in therapy. What was crucial for me in embracing the radical honesty and radical acceptance in the approach to my therapy, was the seriousness of my condition at one point. I just thought to myself: is this shame and embarasasment that I feel about sharing my thoughts and feelings stronger than my wish to get better? Because I could not imagine getting out of that state on my own, without a professional help.


Thomas, and anyone else reading: when you feel tormented, seek help. But be informed and specific about the help that you look for. Not every therapist is the same. Find a person with recommendations, who knows a lot about the problems that you have, but also trust your own judgement, if that person feels like someone you can work with, and ultimatly trust in the long term.


Take care, and never give up fighting!


#628998 I dont know if I belong here

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 19 February 2021 - 05:51 PM

You don'thave to fit a certain profile to belong here, lol...stay as long as you feel it is in any way beneficial to you. It is confusing, and we all seem to have different things going on, but we often have one thing in common, and that is feeling somehow detached from our lives and our surrounding.

Take care,


#628984 There's something wrong with me...

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 18 February 2021 - 01:57 PM

It is good that you had everything checked, and I think you should believe the phychiatrist and his reassurance that you are not in that phase.

This is obviously not the first time you have this fear, but you dealt with it before, and you can do it again.


Try to remember the things that helped you the most last time, and if you have it in written somewhere, go back and read it - I do that sometimes, and it helps me, because sometimes DP can make us forget our own best advice.


Take care,


#628472 Just to share what happened today

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 20 January 2021 - 12:48 PM

You did well. You said "no" to the bullying, by taking yourself physically out of that car.

You have every right to protect yourself, and to set the boundaries the way it feels right to you.

#627856 i will try next week neuronavigated tms

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 22 December 2020 - 09:13 AM

Best of luck!smile.png

#627720 Question to the people running this website

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 15 December 2020 - 04:08 PM

Hi Cindy,


I can reply as a member of the DPSH mod team, consisted of volunteers who are also active members here. However, I do not speak on behalf of the whole team, I will only state my opinion.


It is true that we fight every day with dozens and sometimes hundreds of new registrations and posts that are actually advertisements. I believe that most members are not aware of this job that is done manually, day after day. So, yes, our antennas are up for every post that contains a price and looks like an You would not believe the number of people preying upon those who are vulnerable and desperate. Having said that, you are an old member, and in that sense, I have no reason to doubt your intentions, or the effort and time invested in the programme that you offer.


As someone who is dealing with DPDR caused by developmental trauma, I've noticed that you mention in your programme the role of trauma and the importance of finding the root cause for the onset of DP, and I completely agree with that. However, I personally would not recommend your programme to anyone dealing with trauma, as I am painfully aware of how demanding, long and personalized the trauma treatment has to be. I know that many people dealing with Depersonalization and derealization disorder, or other disorders on the dissociation spectrum, have had their patience tested when it comes to therapy, but I am still more inclined to recommend a therapist specialized in trauma treatment such as EMDR, Somatic experiencing or Sensorimotor therapy.


I have no doubt that your programme can be very helpful for some people, though, and I think that with this post, that does not look like an advertisement any more, lol smile.png, you will be able to reach in a more subtle way those who may be interested in such a model of health coaching.


Personally, I am very glad that you managed to overcome your own depersonalization, and I sincerely congratulate you on that.


Take care,


#627704 New on here have been reading comments a while

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 15 December 2020 - 04:48 AM

Hey Burglecuts,


Yes, I think I was fortunate in finding good therapists, as I had two by now.


The first one was a psychiatrist, and also a very good diagnostician whose approach is CBT. He dx me with Depersonalization and derealization disorder, and later with Dissociative amnesia, among other things (I also had GAD, depression at one point, and somatization), but that was even before I was aware of the fact that dissociative disorders stemming from early childhood are linked to trauma. We reached the root cause of my dissociation in therapy, but I was not able to move on, even though I had periods of being highly functional in my professional life, interchanging with periods of a very low functioning.


The second therapist I found recently is a psychologist, whose approach is REBT, but I found him by explicitly looking for an EMDR therapist. EMDR is one of few approaches (besides Somatic experiencing by Peter Levine, or somatic or Sensorimotor psychotherapy by Pat Ogden), that is efficient in treating trauma, but it is not solely used for that. I am very satisfied with how it goes.


In the meantime, I decided that dx, as helpful as it is at the moment one experiences all the weight of a condition that is unknown and scary, does not define us. The main thing I learned, both in CBT, and now in EMDR, and also from reading a lot of the latest research on dissociation (including DPDR) and trauma, is that I have been badly hurt in my formative years (think of betrayal of trust, or the loss of secure attachment, beside other things), and the result of that is a coping mechanism that has been blown out of proportion, and that mechanism is dissociation.


Now, I cannot know the type of problems you face, where they stem from, and what the right therapy would be for you, but I wholeheartedly recommend EMDR for people who had, as I did, problems with depression, anxiety, addictive or obsessive behavior (that in itself is actually soothing behavior, as an attempt to establish some sort of control in the situation one feels helpless or powerless or an attempt to distract oneself - well, I had more distraction than addiction, really, as I was a workaholic, and I never used any substances, no drugs, no alcohol), dissociative disorders, and particularly with some sort of somatization (such as inexplicable pains, tics etc.).


I also relied a lot on online communities, in particular when my anxiety and DP prevented me from reaching out to people irl.

I know it is very difficult to connect to anyone when you already feel disconnected from the closest people in your life. There is a number of posts in this forum that give very good advice as to how to stay grounded as much as it is possible, how to maintain some healthy habits, and how to endure the worst times that depersonalization and derealization can bring about...Hope you will find something to relate to.


Take care,


#627656 What is worse than, to have this disorder for 50 years?

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 13 December 2020 - 10:43 AM

oh yes..


#627504 some honest thoughts

Posted by AnnaGiulia on 08 December 2020 - 05:04 AM

Hey leminaseri, I admire your spirit, and I think you are reaching some important realizations. You are right, you could not have done anything back then when you were bullied and when your family treated you badly, because you were just a kid or a teen, and it is absolutely not your fault that you have to suffer now only because you already suffered before.


If there is one thing I learned about people who struggle with DP, is that we are some incredibly stubborn and creative people who just refuse to give up, even though DP is an incredibly difficult state to endure, and someone who has never been there cannot possibly understand what that means. It also gives you a unique perspective on life, just as you say. Everything becomes exposed in way, all the pretense and staged lives. When we are so acutely aware of it all, the least we can do is to be better people, starting with being better to ourselves. Stay strong:)