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i'm going to see my therapist tomorrow for the first time since my psychiatrist's diagnosis. as i was thinking about how to describe what dp/dr is like for me, it seemed to me that i could best describe dp as a subconscious state. i saw my ego on a kind of battleground caught in a vertigo between the dizzying extremes of the superego and the id. paralyzing self-constraint on the one hand, and the wild furies of the unconscious on the other. battle wounds.

the idea that dp/dr is a subconscious state might be able to explain many of the psycho-perceptual effects that one finds so confusing, effects that make us feel as though our internal fears are confirmed by our very eyes. consider, for example, the symptoms of 'being in a trance,' of somtimes slurring your speech... it might even explain the unusual high degree of paranoia, the paranoia that multiplies in anxiety... we might be physiologically experiencing a highly vulnerable, half-sleep state.

parts of us literally shut down. that's how i feel at least. (or how i think i feel.)

'subconscious'... is it a bona-fide biolgical category? i don't know.

does this resonate with anyone?

j
 
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I understand what you're saying (but do bear in mind I might be the ONLY person who would, lol).....although you're not quite accurate. As a METAPHOR, I see what you mean, but the terms and concepts are a little confused.

Forget "subconscious" - nobody uses that word. The Unconscious is the deep harbor of all our repressed wishes, desires and urges - and we never really access it - sometimes in therapy or with work, an Unconscious Urge (or Drive, i.e., sexual or aggressive, those are your two choices) will find a way to surface and EXPRESS itself in a conscious thought or fantasy...but Unconscious "stays unconscious' - it's not somethign we go in and out of...but a separate type of thinking that is going on concurrently all the time.

(I'm sure you're the only one still reading, Jen, lol....)

Psychoanalysts might also use the term "Pre-Conscious" to mean some idea or thought that we can't quite recall, but that is REACHABLE...the old "what is the name of that darn song? It's right there on the tip of my tongue....what IS it?" - that's Pre-Conscious - the thought is IN there and close to being remembered, but not yet conscious.

DP is not an Unconscious experience per se. It's an ALTERED state of Consciousness - like a trance state. And what has been altered is probably the following:

The Central Ego (again, we're in psychoanalytic land here) is the Command Central for our conscious thought, our decision making, our linear logical mind. Then there is also "SELF" - that undefined "entity" that we all know we 'have' but there are no words to explain.

I THINK and REASON with my Ego, but there is also an awareness of ME doing it....that's Self.

IN DP states, the Ego is fine, working well, no problem (that's why we look and act normal to other people). What is "askew" is our relationship to Self. It is as if Self-reference has been SPLIT off from Ego.

But please trust me, unless your doctor is a psychoanalyt, NO WAY is he/she going to want to hear all this, lol. You do MUCH BETTER to just go in there and tell how you FEEL (dont' try to explain it all theoretically or the shrink will just tune you out after writing down "extremely obsessive and makes efforts to control other people with her intellectualization" LOL)

Take care,
Janine
 

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Janine,

What you say makes sense to me. Question: What is the route (if any) to reintegration (or integration for the first time, if one has actually never felt a self other than a tormentor who said she was ugly)?

Thanks.
 
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Oh, there's no way I can actually guide/direct you from just posts.

My personal "take" on anything like Body Dysmorphia is this (and not everyone would take this approach, so if you don't like it, just ignore me, lol). Rather than seeing it as a part of yourself "victimizing" you by making you believe you're ugly (or whatever the distortion is), I'd look for what you might get as a BENEFIT from that kind of horrible self-image. Does it, just for example, keep you OUT of love relationships? (i.e., "nobody would ever love me becasue I'm so hideous" etc.). Sometimes that kind of thinking can be used by the mind to keep you SAFE (from hurt, from rejection, from loss, etc.) Essentially, if we walk around thinking we're HORRIBLE for some reason, it sure keeps us from ever gettnig our hopes up too much (and hence, keeps us protected from future disappointment)

See my angle here? It MIGHT be helpful when working in your therapy to try to look at the lies you've told yourself NOT as if you've done it as a tormentor to be sadistic, but as if you've done in from a very MISguided but well-intentioned set of sneaky motives. That's pretty much the way the mind really works. We usually GET something out of our suffering...and we also usually want to avoid looking too deeply as to what that might be.

So I guess my point is never accept the OBVIOUS answer in all things mental - look for other agendas, motives, etc. within self's oddball efforts to protect itself from a scary world.

But there is no particular "approach" you need to use or anything - just keep talking, keep doing what you can to learn about yourself. And remind yourself that life IS scary and full of the unknown....we're not trying to get so healthy that we have NO fear, lol...just that we can trust ourselves to handle our own feelings.
 

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Thanks, Janine. I appreciate your taking the time to answer.

What's scary to me right now is that I am changing inside. It seems to be good, but sometimes I am afraid it's a delusion.

However, I have good people in my doctor and therapist, so I feel that I can reality test with them and not feel so rickety in my apparent "waking up" to the fact that I am not a monster.

Life is a hoot, isn't it?

Thanks, again.
 

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hey janine, i was wondering as to how you are now in the world. are you more or less happy and content with life? are you almost 100% recovered? can you describe some of what led you to your self again? would it be possible to describe how you are now, with your ego-self-thoughts-feeling functioning normally?
 
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