I would like to tell my story. I am not sure why, but I don't know how much longer I can keep going.
I'm not sure exactly when the change came, but at a certain point I no longer had a contrast between my normal connection to reality and episodes of dp, but rather began to exist solely in a state of unreality. Everything I do is based on just assuming things are real, or pretending, or acting. I no longer know if I am alive, but rather am just going with that assumption.
About 12 years ago I started to have major depression and panic attacks, with occasional episodes of dp. Eventually the dp took over, and simultaneously I no longer was able to get any kind of deep sleep. For the past decade I just lay in bed at night until morning, without the feeling of having fallen asleep. My mind is awake the whole night. I have had sleep studies done where they have said I only enter stage one sleep, but I don't even feel like I enter that. I have tried over 20 kinds of medications. I have been hospitalized many times. I have tried CBT. Psychotherapy. Nothing has helped.
Now I am 34 years old and I haven't left my parents house on my own in over 4 years. I am only able to go out of the house accompanied by one of them, and they are now very old. Although I don't feel they are entirely real, they are my only connection to a previous sense of reality and I only feel somewhat comfortable to leave the house when I am with them. Sometimes I don't even safe to be left alone at home. I am constantly trying to distract myself, but nothing seems to work. I exercise strenuously for an hour or more, but it does not help much. I used to be a musician and a photographer, but I have lost all interest in those things because they don't feel real. I feel nothing. I used to enjoy reading, but my mind can't focus long enough to read more than a page at a time.
I have been constantly seeking some help and or/trying to help myself, but my condition just keeps getting worse with each passing year. I try medications, see a psychiatrist regularly, exercise, don't drink or do drugs, but it just seems I am imploding and fading from existence.
I constantly feel like I am a robot or a zombie and there is "nobody home" in my body. That I am on auto-pilot. I am in constant fear that I will just go wander off into traffic (that actually happened once) without knowing it, or harm myself without even having made that decision.
I have not been able to work, to socialize, to have a relationship, and I am now a guy in my mid-30s with no hope. Things no longer just feel like a dream, but I am convinced that they are, that everything is just ephemera and shadows and has no real substance. Almost like a Buddhist, but instead of a sense of enlightenment there is instead total and complete hell.
My apologies for this self-indulgent rant. It has always been a hope of mine to meet some people who are like myself, that have had there life completely altered and stolen and are somehow quietly trying to cope and make it to the next day.