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AnnaGiulia

Member Since 04 Feb 2020
Online Last Active Today, 10:35 AM
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Topics I've Started

DP-free for a month

07 May 2020 - 03:10 AM

Today is exactly one month that I am DP-free. DP was never my main problem, but it was the most acute. I felt as if I was not able to work on anything else while DPd, as I had no capacity to process things as I usually do. The other day my knowledge of another foreign language came back, only because I was able once again to put individual words into coherent narrative, as I was not losing my energy on just trying to cope and survive another day.
I read over and over the posts of people stating that they are staying away from the Forum, once they get better, or when they feel exhausted with reading about DP, and I honestly understand that. However, for me this Forum has only been beneficial, as it was a logical step in my recovery. I see it now as I saw it when I first logged in, as just one option in a multitude of options: embrace whatever works for you.
I did not come here first. I had three years before that, with DP on and off, to figure out what is wrong with me, to take therapy and meds, to go through stages of healing of at least some consequences of the trauma that made me this way. Not many people talk of trauma here, but I came to realize that most people I interacted with actually had some early attachment trauma in their life, that made them prone to perhaps dissociate more easily than other people.
The tone of this forum is set in a very rational way. It attracted me at once, as I ran scared from chats at other forums that I frequent, as I could not cope with the amount of trauma triggers. It does not mean that people with DPDR are not suffering. They do. Immensely. Just the nature of this state makes us detached from emotions, and it makes expressions of our suffering seem a bit detached, as well. I felt safe and at a precisely right distance here.
I had DP before, and I will have it again, I am almost certain about that. It does not scare me, though. Other times in life I got out of it on my own. This time I needed more support.
For people I know in rl, some close people, it means nothing when I say I am DP-free now. For a whole month. They absolutely cannot understand how precious it is and what does it mean to wake up one day and not feel completely out of one’s own mind, thoughts, body. Because they do not know what it means to be disconnected from life. So, the only people I can share that with are you.
I have a massive load of other stuff to deal with, so I cannot say, hey, wow, now I am DP-free and everything will be great now. My work on so many other issues has only just begun. But it is ok. I never expected to just miraculously step out of DP, and find everything else just where I left it. Basically, it subsided in me because now I am able to deal with other stuff.
Anyway, if you are struggling right now, know that DP can come and go. The experience of people with DP differs, and your recovery will probably be different than mine. If your DP has been with you for years, then you are a real-life hero, but no one will ever know the amount of will power and courage it takes for you to go through your days. I absolutely sympathize with you, and wish I could express my admiration for you in a better way than this. But you know what I mean.
I do not intend to stay away from this Forum, not only because I am certain I will be DPd again some time; I think it is a well needed self-help tool. To be able to say things knowing the others would understand without too much explanation, to vent, to get some feedback, was already huge for me.
Take care and see your around,
A.


Some Advice to Myself

18 February 2020 - 05:47 AM

This is some advice I wrote down for myself, some of it actually taken from posts in this Forum. Cheers! Anna

 

1.           Do not obsess about your symptoms. They are just manifestations of DP.

2.           Address the accompanying problems, in particular depression, anxiety or any other mental or physical health problem that you may have, which can be treated with therapy or medications. This includes resolving the trauma in trauma survivors, such as myself.

3.           Keep yourself healthy and mobile, as much as you can. Eat balanced diet, walk at least 30 minutes every day. It does not have to be a strenuous exercise.

4.           Make peace with your DP. As you would with any other medical condition that you have. Educate yourself about it, but again, do not obsess about it to the point that it becomes the only focus in your life.

5.           Do not isolate yourself. You need people, the exchange and communication. However, be perfectly honest with yourself who do you actually need, and which level of communication feels ok to you at any point.

6.           Forum is a good place to vent. Perhaps there are some other platforms, too, I just don’t have anything on my mind right now.

7.           You are still the person that you were before DP hit. Even if you do not really recognize yourself as that person. But the things that you did before, that you liked, that you once invested emotionally in, can still serve you as guidelines. You did not become a Martian and a whole different person just because of DP. Also, no one can actually see your DP.

8.           Ground yourself when you feel like a balloon tied by a string to this world. I often felt irritated by this advice, as it always felt so easy when they write it down, but so hard when you are actually dealing with it. It does not have to be much work though: just one or two simple things that you know would make you feel more connected. Whatever works for you.

9.           The whole world is still here, with all its possibilities. You can be whoever you want to be. Outline yourself, make a rough description. When you are already there, make a list of things that you actually do on a daily basis, or that you could do, with the level of strength and abilities that you currently feel capable of applying. In addition to this, perhaps you can even stretch as far as to determine some goals for yourself, and break them into steps. Things that would make you feel good about yourself at this point. And there you are, managing your life with DP.

 


Slide Show memories

10 February 2020 - 12:35 PM

Do you ever experience something of a slide show of random images from your life in your mind? I am not sure it is part of DP, I never encountered such description, but for all that I know it might be. For me it happens from time to time, often in the afternoon or evening. Just like with these old slide projectors, I can almost hear them clicking. I do realize that these are sequences of images that have some kind of a narrative line that binds them, but I do not seem to grasp it, because they are quite random, some are from actual memories of mine and from different times in life, and some are from other sources such a movies or media. I never understood what it is about, and when it starts, I have to let it do its thing, and wait until it passes...


AnnaGuilia's Introduction

04 February 2020 - 12:58 PM

Hi everyone, I am also a new member, so just hoped to introduce myself and my experience with DP/DR.

 

My name is Anna, I just turned 44.

 

End of 2016, I had a major episode of what was immediately diagnosed to be DP/DR disorder, accompanied by generalized anxiety disorder, depression, somatization disorder. World looked like a scenography, I felt like an automaton, and I could not produce any emotional connection to either objects or people around me.

 

It took me half a year of CBT and Zoloft to get really well. I did some of my biggest professional projects immediately as I recovered, but I guess it was my old way of coping using my workaholic skills.

 

Year and a half in, approaching the end of 2018, I started having panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder's symptoms came back, but no depression, and no explicit signs of DP/DR. I was diagnosed with dissociative amnesia instead. I was put again on Zoloft, but this time the focus of therapy was on great chunks of time I was missing from my childhood before the age of ten.

 

At the beginning of 2019, I finally faced the memories of a repetitive childhood trauma that caused my DP/DR, as well as dissociative amnesia and everything else. I though that once I realized where the unbearable feelings were coming from, I would be healed, just as the last time. But this time, to face the trauma meant that my whole world, everything I knew and everything I believed in came falling down in tiny pieces.

 

I do not know whether this happened to some of you, but after facing the roots of my trauma that produced my disorders, I did not know who I am any more, and it felt very different to my initial experience of depersonalization. This time it felt as if different parts of me are holding different memories, emotions and even abilities, that I cannot access simultaneously. My therapist said that these feelings and memories that I experienced as if they belonged to other "parts" of me, were actually sheltered for a long time by dissociative amnesia capsule, and so they now seemed foreign and distant to me. He did not even suggest that it may perhaps belong to the DID or OSDD spectrum, and I know better than to give myself a diagnose.

 

However, that was more than half a year ago, and the feelings of having different sets of emotions and memories within me, that change from time to time, depending on a situation I am in, still persist.

 

I suffer a lot from this "not knowing who I am" feeling, but I keep myself intellectually busy all the time. I read and write a lot. I only find it hard to socialize with people who are not my closest friends, as I do not know what to expect from myself when I turn to a gathering. I was always so busy and productive, so many people looked up to me and took professional advice from me. I still want to be able to talk to people about this hard but still incredible journey I am on, but I can hardly ever find anyone who would even begin to understand what I am facing right now.

 

Anyway, thanks for being there, and stay strong!

 

Best, Anna